The Thyroid Gland and Thyroid Hormone
The thyroid gland is a butterfly shaped gland that is located over the trachea (wind pipe) just below the larynx (voice box). The thyroid gland plays a very important role in most all the metabolic processes of the body. The thyroid gland with its thyroid hormone is responsible for regulating metabolism.
How Thyroid Hormone is Made
The hypothalamus, often referred to as the body’s “thermostat” is responsible for making sure the thyroid blood levels are normal. When the hypothalamus notices the thyroid blood levels decreasing it releases TRH (thyroid releasing hormone). The TRH then signals the pituitary gland to release TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone). TSH stimulates the thyroid gland to begin producing thyroid hormone.
When the body’s levels of thyroid hormone become normal and the body is functioning normally the pituitary gland will cease its release of TSH and the process stops until the hypothalamus notices the thyroid hormone levels decreasing again.
Hypothyroidism is caused by insufficient production or absorption of thyroid hormone that causes abnormally low blood thyroid hormone levels. This problem with the thyroid gland is usually brought about as a result of iodine insufficiency, a tumor, a damaged thyroid gland, or vitamin deficiencies. This type of hypothyroidism is called “primary hypothyroidism”.
Hypothyroidism can also be a result of the pituitary gland and/or hypothalamus failing to function properly. This type of hypothyroidism is called “secondary hypothyroidism”.
Low thyroid hormone levels may not only make you feel old, they can propel you into the conditions and diseases associated with aging. Low levels of T4 can be responsible for weight gain, since T4 plays a role in controlling the body’s metabolism. The changes that are brought about as a result of the aging process such as changes in the fat to muscle ratio and the shrinkage of organs can also be caused by a lack of thyroid hormone. A decrease in the amount of lean body mass can in turn interfere with the activity of an enzyme that converts thyroxine (T4) into triodothyronine (T3). T3 is about 5 times more potent than T4.
Adequate levels of thyroid hormone are needed to regulate blood sugar, so a deficiency of thyroid hormone can lead to mature-onset diabetes. Low levels of thyroid hormone can also greatly increase the risk of cardiovascular disease due to an increase in the levels of cholesterol and triglycerides and may cause high blood pressure. Also, iodine is essential to the proper functioning of the thyroid gland, several studies that have been done have shown a correlation between low iodine levels and an increased risk of cancer.
Hypothyroidism is a fairly common problem. About 1 in 10 women and 1 in 20 men over the age of 50 will develop some symptoms of hypothyroidism. Thyroid hormone production decreases as we age, however the usual age related decrease in thyroid hormone production is not considered true hypothyroidism. Hypothyroidism is diagnosed when the thyroid hormone level drops below what is considered “normal for age”.
The general opinion of many in the medical community has been that the drop that occurs in hormone levels is a normal part of the aging process and replacement is not necessary. Although some of their aging patients are having clear symptoms of insufficient thyroid hormone levels, some physicians refuse to place these ailing patients on thyroid medication because they consider their ailing condition a normal part of the aging process. These patients are missing out on thyroid replacement therapy that should alleviate or improve most, if not all their symptoms. Thankfully this negative opinion is slowly changing.
In the older population hypothyroidism is one of the most overlooked conditions.
HGH and its Effects on the Thyroid Gland
Dr. Ronald Klatz states “Human growth hormone exerts its actions either directly or indirectly through its intermediary insulin growth factors to every organ system of the body, ……..almost nothing escapes its magical touch.”
Jens Sandahl Christiansen of the Aarthus Kommunehospital of Denmark stated in a report “untreated HGH deficient adults have been shown to have increased cardiovascular mortality, reduced exercise capacity, reduced muscle strength, subnormal glomerular filtration rate and renal plasma flow, defective sweat secretion and defective thermoregulation, reduced energy expenditure and basal metabolic rate, abnormal thyroid hormone metabolism, reduced myocardial function and clinical signs of premature atherosclerosis. Body composition has been found abnormal with increased fat mass, decreased lean body mass, decreased muscle fat ratio, visceral obesity, reduced extracellular fluid volume, and reduced bone mineral content
Improving the body’s release of and use of HGH is known to help to improve the function of other organs in the body and help to stabilize other hormones in the body, this includes the thyroid gland and thyroid hormone. Many patients who undergo successful HGH therapy see improvements in their hypothyroidism condition. This includes a decrease in their need for thyroid medications.
Patients with hypothyroidism should consult their private doctor before beginning any HGH therapy.
Anyone with hypothyroidism should see improvements with HGH therapy, however their doctor will need to monitor their thyroid levels to determine their need for continued thyroid medication as the HGH therapy improves their thyroid gland’s function.
When a patient with hypothyroidism begins taking one of my HGH products I always tell them to pay close attention to their body. They should have their thyroid levels checked before beginning therapy with my product, and they should continue to monitor their thyroid levels as the therapy progresses. The reason for this is because the product should improve the function of the thyroid gland, and as the function of the thyroid gland improves, its release of thyroid hormone should also improve and so the need for thyroid medication should decrease. The thyroid levels should be checked after the first 3-4 weeks of therapy with my product, even sooner if the patient notices any significant changes. The patient’s private physician will decide if and when the thyroid medication should be decreased or stopped.
Lisa Wells, RN