Hypothyroidism and Infertility - Discussing the Connection
What is the link between hypothyroidism and infertility?
An underactive thyroid is known as hypothyroidism in the medical world. It is a condition in which the thyroid gland does not produce sufficient amounts of essential hormones.
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A note about Hypothyroidism and Infertility - Discussing the Connection
In natural health and healing, we believe in holistic health and healing, as we realize that different parts of the human body are highly interlinked, often beyond Man's understanding. We also believe that the body has the ability to heal itself of any disease, even supposedly incurable diseases.
In order to do so, the body needs the support of some basic dietary and lifestyle good health habits, such as a full body detox and a proper understanding and application of nutrition. No matter how remote or unrelated a health condition may seem, these fundamental health steps will greatly magnify the effects and benefits of any of our health-promoting efforts, including the use of specific natural health remedies.
For women, it could mean the link to fertility. The lower levels of thyroid hormones that some women produce, not only interferes with their ovulation cycle, but is at the root of their impaired fertility as well.
For women, it is essential to treat hypothyroidism in their effort to experience fertility, and in order to treat the underlying cause (autoimmune or pituitary disorders), it is imperative to find out what it is.
Located in the neck just under the Adam's apple, the thyroid gland is responsible for secreting particular hormones - thyroxine (stimulates metabolism) and triodothyronine (iodine containing hormone) into the body. They aid in the regulation of bodily function and are necessary for good health. Without their production, a greater number of weeks pass between menstrual cycles, and there are also longer and heavier periods, creating instability for fertile conditions; the hypothyroidism and infertility connection thus comes in.
The symptoms of this condition develop slowly and resemble those of other illnesses; they are also different from one woman to another. Initial symptoms might include sluggishness and fatigue. For this reason, the condition is often ignored or misdiagnosed.
With slowed metabolism, people experience an increased sensitivity to cold, pain, stiffness and / or swelling in the joints, weight gain for no apparent reason (no increased eating or change in routine), various muscle aches, cramps, tenderness or puffiness in the face, as well as depression.
Thus, as you can see, besides the hypothyroidism and infertility link, the former is linked to many other health ailments, too.
Hypothyroidism can be passed on through the family. Approximately 1 in 3,000 newborns are born every year in the US with a defective thyroid or none at all. Some women develop the condition during their pregnancy or shortly thereafter. If not treated, the disorder can jeopardize the health of mother and baby alike.
So what are some ways to treat a sluggish thyroid in order to prevent the hypothyroidism and infertility connection from taking root?
Medical treatment includes synthetic thyroid hormone (most popular). This usually consists of taking one pill every day to regulate hormone levels and speed up the metabolism. It has proven effective in lowering LDL cholesterol (which tends to rise with the disorder) and has even helped reverse some of the weight gain.
On the flip side, it is often trial and error that results in the perfect dosage, because the disorder does affect women differently. Too much of the synthetic hormone can produce symptoms of hyperthyroidism, causing everything to race throughout the body, and can adversely affect many other organs (heart) as well as the eyesight. This takes careful monitoring.
Indeed, one must be careful in using this type of treatment for hypothyroidism and infertility.
There are also some medications or supplements that hinder the body's ability to absorb the synthetic thyroid hormones. These include soy products, high-fiber diets, supplements such as iron, calcium and cholestyramine (used to lower cholesterol), or a compound found in antacids called aluminum hydroxide.
To beat hypothyroidism and infertility, a holistic approach helps.
Consume a well balanced diet including foods like fish, skinless chicken and whole grains, while avoiding members of the cabbage family, all processed foods, or foods made with white flour or sugar. Herbs that may be helpful include ginger, black cohosh, cayenne, nettle, mugwort and bayberry. Flaxseed oil can help increase hormone production.
Having read about the hypothyroidism and infertility connection, you can learn more about these conditions by reading the other related articles and pages on this website.
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