Do you feel too young to be fatigued, moody and suffering from achiness? Thyroid problems are becoming more and more prevalent in people reaching their 30’s and 40’s. The most common thyroid disorders are underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) and overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism). The following is an overview of how these thyroid conditions can present in your 30’s and 40’s.
Underactive Thyroid – Hypothyroidism:
- Fatigue and low energy levels
- Weight gain or difficulty losing weight
- Cold intolerance
- Dry skin and hair
- Depression or mood changes
- Muscle aches and weakness
- Elevated cholesterol levels
- Menstrual irregularities or heavy periods
- Memory and concentration difficulties
Overactive Thyroid – Hyperthyroidism:
- Unexplained weight loss or increased appetite
- Rapid or irregular heartbeat (palpitations)
- Anxiety, irritability, or nervousness
- Heat intolerance and excessive sweating
- Tremors or shaky hands
- Increased bowel movements or diarrhea
- Difficulty sleeping or insomnia
- Fatigue or muscle weakness
- Eye problems, such as bulging eyes or vision changes (in Graves’ disease, a common cause of hyperthyroidism)
- Menstrual irregularities or light periods
It’s worth noting that thyroid problems can sometimes be challenging to diagnose as the symptoms can overlap with other conditions, and you may experience a combination of symptoms. To make it even more difficult to diagnose, some people may have thyroid dysfunction, where their thyroid hormone levels are within the reference range, but they experience symptoms suggestive of thyroid imbalance.
If you suspect a thyroid issue, it’s essential to consult an integrative physician. We will perform a comprehensive evaluation. This may include blood tests to measure thyroid hormone levels (such as TSH, T4, and T3) and assess your symptoms and medical history. Based on the findings, they can provide an accurate diagnosis and recommend appropriate treatment or further investigations if needed.
There are holistic remedies that may be beneficial in conjunction with an integrative physician’s treatment of thyroid issues and in general support overall well-being as follows:
- Focus on a well-balanced diet rich in nutrient-dense foods, including fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats.
- Consider incorporating foods that support thyroid health, such as iodine-rich foods (seaweed, seafood), selenium-rich foods (Brazil nuts, sardines), and foods high in vitamin D (fatty fish, fortified dairy).
- Limit processed foods, refined sugars, and excessive caffeine, as they can interfere with thyroid function.
- Some people find benefits from gluten-free or dairy-free diets, as certain individuals with hypothyroidism may have sensitivities to these food groups.
- Some herbs are believed to support thyroid health, but scientific evidence is limited. Examples include ashwagandha, guggul, and bladderwrack.
- Consult with your doctor before starting any herbal supplements, as they may interact with medications or have contraindications.
- Engage in regular physical activity, such as walking, jogging, cycling, or strength training, to support metabolism and overall health.
- Chronic stress can impact thyroid function. Engage in stress-reducing activities such as yoga, meditation, deep breathing exercises, or mindfulness practices.
- Prioritize adequate sleep.
- Establish a regular sleep schedule to support overall well-being.
- Practices like acupuncture, acupressure, and traditional Chinese medicine may offer supportive benefits.
It’s important to note that holistic remedies should not replace prescribed medication or medical advice. Remember that everyone’s experience with thyroid issues can vary, so it’s important to seek advice from one of our integrative physicians in Minneapolis for a proper evaluation and guidance specific to your situation. If you are suffering from thyroid problems (no matter your age), contact our office to schedule your initial consultation.