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Most people know about the thyroid, but few may understand what it actually does. Even within the realm of medicine, the endocrine system, of which the thyroid is a part, remains one of the more mysterious parts of the body. As the system that manages the body’s growth, reproduction, energy production and ability to repair itself, it is imperative that both the thyroid and the endocrine system as a whole function at maximum potential.
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It is estimated that around 20 million Americans have some type of thyroid disease, and as many as 60% of those who have it may not realize it. Because the endocrine system is still not well understood and thyroid problems can easily masquerade as other health issues within the body, it can be difficult to get an accurate diagnosis.
The best thing you can do if you have any concerns about your health is to be your own best advocate, educate yourself on the subject, and use that information in conjunction with your doctor’s (or several doctors’) opinions. Here, we’ll discuss some of the functions of the thyroid, factors that contribute to thyroid problems, and how C60 Purple Power can support thyroid health.
About the Thyroid
The thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland in your neck, resting below the Adam’s apple. The thyroid is considered to be the “master gland” of the endocrine system and produces several hormones, with triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4) being the most critical to health. T3 is the biologically viable (most usable) form; therefore, it is critical that when the body produces T4, it can convert it to T3 at the proper rate. It is important to note that the production of T4 and T3 is directly related to the synthesis of TSH (thyroid-stimulating hormone). TSH is made in the pituitary gland, which increases or decreases levels of TSH based on how much T4 and T3 are being made in the thyroid. Therefore, if the body has elevated TSH levels, it may mean the thyroid is having a hard time making T3/T4 (possibly indicating hypothyroidism). If T3/T4 levels are too high, there may be a lack of TSH production (a possible sign of hyperthyroidism).
Thyroid hormones affect the brain, gastrointestinal tract, cardiovascular system, bone metabolism, gallbladder, liver function, digestion, menstrual cycle, and body temperature regulation.
“Most organs or cells in the body actually have receptors for the thyroid hormone,” explains research scientist and The C60 Show co-host Ken Swartz. “That’s why it affects so many of the different organs because it’s like the master gland, and it sends out little messages to all the different parts of the body.”
Given that our endocrine system is responsible for growth, reproduction, energy, and repair, and the thyroid is the “master gland” of this complex and interdependent system, an under-functioning thyroid can have profound implications for the whole body.
Common Thyroid Conditions and Their Symptoms
Thyroid conditions fall into two broad categories: hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid) and hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid). Hypothyroidism tends to occur much more frequently in the U.S., although hyperthyroid conditions are on the rise.
Symptoms of hypothyroid conditions may include:
- Weight gain
- Dry skin
- Hair loss
- Slow heart rate
- Sensitivity to cold
- More prolonged or heavier menstrual periods
Conversely, hyperthyroid conditions may present as:
- Weight loss
- Increased appetite
- Fast heart rate
- Anxiety and nervousness
- Shaky hands
- Sensitivity to heat
- Frequent bowel movements or diarrhea
- Muscle weakness
- Thin skin and brittle hair
- Shorter or lighter periods
It’s important to remember that these are general lists, and there may be exceptions. For example, a person might have hypothyroidism and still maintain low body weight.
When there is the possibility of a thyroid problem, initially, doctors tend to test TSH levels (because, as mentioned above, excess TSH may mean low T3/T4 and vice versa). However, simply testing for TSH does not always reveal the entire picture. For example, the body may be producing enough T4 but is having difficulty converting it to the usable form of T3 (the small intestines secrete intestinal sulfatase to make this conversion), and TSH levels may not reflect this distinction.
While hyper- and hypothyroid conditions refer to T3 and T4 production levels, and these are often tested by checking TSH levels, it’s worth mentioning that some thyroid abnormalities are rooted in autoimmune disease, which incurs a different type of testing. For example, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, considered the most common autoimmune disorder in the U.S., is due to antibodies in the immune system that mistakenly attack the thyroid gland, resulting in hypothyroidism. An example of a hyperthyroid autoimmune condition slowly on the rise is Grave’s disease. To understand if a thyroid condition is connected to an autoimmune response, it’s advisable that doctors test for both GAD and TPO antibodies. This can help determine both the source and type of thyroid condition with greater accuracy.
Thyroid Conditions: Contributing Factors
Quite a number of things can cause or aggravate thyroid imbalance. Some better-known causes include iodine and other nutritional deficiencies or sensitivities. Both iodine and selenium are needed for the conversion of T4 to T3, in addition to the production of intestinal sulfatase in the gut. It’s wise to note that fluoride and chloride (commonly found in toothpaste and drinking water) bind to iodine receptors in the body, confusing it into thinking it has the proper molecule for conversion when in fact, it does not.
“Fluoride is in the same chemical family as iodine, so the body can take fluoride and try to make T3, but it’s not going to work,” explains Swartz. Therefore it’s helpful to make sure your body is getting enough iodine and selenium, but it’s also advisable to limit exposure to fluoride and chloride by filtering water and using a non-fluoride toothpaste.
It’s also important to avoid any foods that cause allergies or adverse reactions, as continuing to eat them only further encourages an autoimmune response down the line. Those with hypothyroid conditions may find it especially helpful to avoid both gluten and dairy. If casein, a dairy protein, and gliadin, a protein component of gluten, traverse the gut barrier (leaky gut syndrome) and move into the bloodstream, the immune system views them as foreign invaders and reacts with an army of antibodies sent to destroy them. The same antibodies that go after both casein and gliadin also attack thyroid tissue.
Often signs of adrenal dysfunction will go hand in hand with thyroid issues. “If you have adrenal dysfunction, you really can’t separate the thyroid from the adrenal glands. They’re closely connected,” cautions Sierra Samuel, health coach and co-host of The C60 Show. If you feel you need to be tested for adrenal health, it’s wise to test thyroid hormone levels as well.
Other factors to consider in tandem with thyroid health include exposure to heavy metals such as lead and mercury, viruses such as Epstein Barr (which can mimic autoimmune conditions if it is hiding in a gland or organ), chronic stress, systemic inflammation, oxidative stress (free radicals), and hormone imbalance.
Exposure to toxins in plastics includes endocrine disruptors, an example of which are xenoestrogens. These harmful forms of estrogen bind to receptor sites in the body, blocking the use of beneficial estrogen, causing estrogen dominance and other hormone imbalances which have been linked to problems with the thyroid.
In addition, the glyphosates present in herbicides and pesticides (whether they’re in your food or on your lawn) destroy vital intestinal flora. “Those thyroid hormones can’t convert (T4 to T3) if you don’t have those good bacteria lining the gut to help it convert it,” explains Samuel. Antibiotics and synthetic steroids administered to the livestock used for meat and dairy also decimate gut bacteria and confuse hormonal signals within the body when consumed by humans.
C60 and Thyroid Health
C60 works as a superior antioxidant, neutralizing reactive oxidative species (ROS, aka free radicals) and managing oxidative stress.1 Because an excess of ROS causes damage to cells and DNA, oxidative stress is at the root of a myriad of health concerns. The good news is that addressing ROS by supporting antioxidant production can promote health across all systems in the body.
Our bodies are exposed to free radicals daily, from the skincare products we use to air emissions. The body, therefore, devotes a lot of time and energy just to the management of oxidative stress. This means a great deal of its resources goes to producing antioxidants to fight ROS. When the body can’t consume or produce enough antioxidants to fight the number of free radicals, cellular damage is incurred, and essential physical processes suffer. This includes a lag in energy (ATP) and hormone production.
C60 Purple Power’s antioxidant effects relieve the oxidative burden on the body by addressing ROS itself, rather than relying on the body to do it alone. When cells can return to their proper function, mitochondria are able to produce both ATP (adenosine triphosphate) and pregnenolone at beneficial levels. This means cellular energy is promoted, and pregnenolone, the precursor to hormone production, can support hormone levels across the body, including healthy thyroid and pituitary function.
C60 also promotes the production of stem cells. It supports the elimination of senescent cells, which no longer function but still take up vital energy, signaling to the body that replacement cells must be made. These stem cells can then be used by all the different systems, such as tissue repair in glands like the thyroid.
Inflammation is often a symptom of thyroid conditions, especially those that are linked to an autoimmune disorder. Most unwanted forms of inflammation happen as a result of oxidative stress; C60 Purple Power’s antioxidant capabilities neutralize ROS and promote a healthy inflammatory response, managing autoimmune “flare-ups.”2
In addition to its own antioxidant effects, C60 supports the production of antioxidants superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase, glutathione, and CoQ10. Taking a good multivitamin each day along with C60 Purple Power supports overall health. Vitamins, minerals, and probiotics deliver key nutrients, which work side by side with antioxidants to support both the endocrine system and the whole body in health and balance.
“I love C60 Purple Power. It has been such a miracle for me. I’m regaining my life, I’m learning new things…Every day I’m getting stronger and stronger. My thyroid is at optimal levels, whereas before it was barely functioning. I’ve been working so hard to overcome my ailments, and C60 has been the key factor in making everything better for me.” – Erica F.
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The information herein and C60 Purple Power products are not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure disease. Please consult a healthcare professional before starting any new diet or exercise regimen.
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