Simply said . . .
Hypothyroidism is a problem with your thyroid gland. And defines a state of sluggish thyroid function and metabolism.
Hashimoto's is a problem with your immune function. And defines an autoimmune disease process which can result in symptoms of Hypothyroidism.
Both ending with the same devastating product.
Someone very, very dear to me posted a letter from the prospective of Hashimoto's disease that really touched my heart. So I decided to write this blog.
As we know, the thyroid gland is a small butterfly-shaped gland found in the lower part of the neck that plays a primary role in regulating your metabolism and energy. Two reactions of a body in distress are:
Hyperthyroidism - is an overactive thyroid function that produces "too many" hormones. This affects about 1.2 percent of the U.S. population with symptoms of heart palpitations, sweating, anxiety, weight loss, heat intolerance and muscle weakness.
Hypothyroidism - is an under-active thyroid function that produces "too few"
hormones. This affects 1 in 7 adults with symptoms of weight gain, fatigue, constipation, dry skin and hair, hair loss, puffiness or swelling in the face, depression and cold intolerance.
Hashimoto's is also known as "CHRONIC LYMPHOCYTIC THYROIDITIS," an autoimmune disorder in which antibodies are directed to attack the thyroid gland leading to chronic inflammation. So what would make antibodies attack this gland and other organs????
Well . . . after 10 years of researching the mechanics of the human body, I believe there is a root cause to any thyroid issue. You see, the lectins we consume in our diet everyday can specifically trigger thyroid cells to "talk to" immune cells and attract them to the thyroid gland. Lectins send miscommunication to the thyroid and other organs, messing up the signaling process of the body. This is considered one of the early steps to the autoimmune destruction of the thyroid.
Now don't get me wrong . . . lectins are high in nutritional value . . . "IF" our body and immune system is functioning properly. BUT if not . . . which is where most Americans that eat a Western diet are . . . lectins will now cause havoc to our body. This causing Leaky Gut, etc. (Read "The Good, The Bad and The Ugly" by Mindy Lee for more information on this devastating process.) Lectin activity might be a good explanation of why Hashimoto's occurs after having a long term or recurrent infection. You see, lectins block mucosa, which is the natural barrier and protector against bacteria and viruses not only in the intestines, but also in the throat. This creates a prolonged state of inflammation which can reprogram the immune system and lead to autoimmune conditions.
So what can fix this problem? In simple terms . . . NAC (N-Acetyl Cysteine). Nac helps to reduce thyroid antibodies, supports detoxification pathways (which are usually impaired in Hashimoto's) and supports gut function. People with Hashimoto's have impaired ability to clear toxins out of the body caused by leaky gut and lectins.
When taking NAC orally, it turns into an antioxidant which supports liver function and helps clear the liver of heavy medals and toxins. I won't get scientific on you, but NAC helps to reduce oxidative stress (free radicals) by neutralizing the hydrogen peroxide in the body which causes damage to the thyroid gland. Oxidative stress is involved with Hashimoto's.
Now . . . NAC is a precursor to the antioxidant "Glutathione" and protects against oxidative stress. A depletion of glutathione levels has been implicated with higher levels of thyroid antibodies and Hashimoto's.
Simply said . . . the lower the glutathione . . . the higher the anibodies . . . and the higher the levels of TSH, suggesting hypothyroidism. And as a precursor to glutathione, NAC can help to optimize glutathione levels and reduce thyroid antibodies.
So get your NAC on today. If you like more information on the thyroid or any illness, please feel free to go to our contact page.