Natural medicine doctor and hormone guru, Lara Briden says the thyroid is our canary in the coal mine. If your thyroid is struggling—other tissues are struggling too. So, it’s worthwhile having a conversation about your thyroid especially if weight gain has been troubling you and you have low mood, constipation or high cholesterol – all signs your thyroid may not be functioning well.
What Might Thyroid Function Indicate?
What greatly affects the thyroid is:
- Iodine deficiency
- Plastics, pesticides and PCBs (and tons of other chemicals)
- Mercury (from fish and teeth)
- Gluten (as in autoimmune thyroiditis)
- Neck trauma
- Emotional issues linked to communication and your ability to understand and speak your inner truth.
The Benefits of a Canary in the Coal Mine
I prefer to view all symptoms as messages from our higher self that, if we listen to and learn from, will guide us to optimal health and wellbeing.
So it helps to know what the thyroid might be telling you:
Are you Eating Well?
Are you Avoiding Plastics?
Are you using glass containers, avoiding plastics where possible and buying organic? If not, consider buying some pyrex glass storage containers and shopping at The Source for bulk foods.
Are you Avoiding Heavy Metals?
Are you aware of heavy metal sources and how to avoid them? Tinned tuna is high and should be limited to once or twice a week. Your teeth are also a source of mercury so see your dentist about getting them removed, safely!
Are you stressed?
If you’re in peri-menopause, you are by definition, stressed! Menopause is an endocrine challenge so you can pretty much guarantee that your body is working really hard. Excess stress will cause a competition between your stress hormones and the other steroidal hormones in the body including thyroid hormones. So the question isn’t really “are you stressed?” but “are you resting enough?” See if you can give yourself permission to rest more.
Are you Eating Grains?
Are you eating wheat, oats, corn, and even legumes? Too much of these foods (which are hard for the body to digest) can lead to gut inflammation and an over activated immune system. Hashimoto’s is an early warning that all is not well in your gut and that you are potentially reacting to these substances.
If you do eat grains (I recommend keeping them to a minimum) then they do need to be prepared properly. Listen to this podcast to find out why grains are difficult to digest and how to prepare them using soaking, sprouting and fermenting like our ancestors did: Should We Eat Grains podcast with Sally Fallon Morrell and Hilda Labrada Gore.
Do you have Neck Trauma?
Whiplash and head injuries can affect the brain stem and the pituitary gland. Remember the Will Smith movie, Concussion? The footballer’s head injuries were linked to dementia and other brain disorders. Check out the trailer.
This could happen to you too if you’ve had a car accident or sports injury. It’s worth getting checked out by an Osteopath or Chiropractor or someone similar if you suspect your neck is out of alignment.
Are you Expressing Yourself?
A balanced throat chakra helps to set us free from the fear of judgement or need for approval from others. Energetic healing practices and the help of a therapist or coach can help you to learn to express yourself, your desires and your boundaries. It takes time but its a truly rewarding and liberating process.
If you’re struggling with menopausal symptoms and you can relate to any of the above then looking after your thyroid health will make a big difference to your wellbeing. In my opinion the biggest lesson in midlife is to learn to rest and take better care of ourself.
Brenda Rogers is the founder of Quintessence Health and creator of the Passage to Power Programs, Retreats and Seminars. She combines the wisdom of Earth medicine, women’s mysteries and a career in the personal development industry to empower women to navigate the menopausal transition being radiant, alive and well. She also supports the wellness and transformation of men in their transition through midlife.
To request your invitation to the upcoming Awaken Deep Calm Retreat email firstname.lastname@example.org.
To attend Brenda’s free webinars, check out Eventbrite.
To watch recordings and other enlightening videos, head to YouTube.