• Dr. Lena Fernandez

The Association Between Leaky Gut and Hashimoto Thyroiditis

Updated: Mar 24


Image: Alpha Stock Images - http://alphastockimages.com/


Did you know Hashimoto thyroiditis is a common condition affecting millions of people in America, which is often misdiagnosed for fibromyalgia and other conditions? Let's start first by describing Hashimoto thyroiditis.


Thyroiditis is a term that describes thyroid irritation. Simply put, Hashimoto thyroiditis is an autoimmune disease, which occurs when your body (mainly the gut) makes antibodies (toxins) that attack the cells in your thyroid. Eventually, due to severe compromise, the thyroid gland becomes scarred and exhausted making the gland feel firm and rubbery. In return, the thyroid can't make enough of the thyroid hormones to lose weight, increase energy, and improve healthy aging.

Many individuals with Hashimoto have an under-active thyroid gland or hypothyroidism. However, you don't have to have low thyroid to carry an auto-immune condition like Hashimoto. Most likely you or someone you know is currently taking thyroid medication to keep thyroid hormone levels normal, which may somewhat improve thyroid hormones. However, medications do not reverse Hashimoto, a condition that begins in the gut. In fact, studies show that Synthroid (levothyroxine), a specific medication that treats thyroid hormone deficiencies or hypothyroidism is the number one drug written by physicians in the United States.

Research shows an estimated 20 million Americans are currently living with thyroid disease. Up to 60 percent of those with thyroid disease are unaware of their condition.

Hashimoto's thyroiditis is more common if you are:

  • A woman - Women are about 8 times more likely to have the disease. Hashimoto thyroiditis can begin during pregnancy. This condition may get better in some women during pregnancy but it can return after the delivery.

  • Middle aged - Common cases are between ages 40 and 60, but I've witnessed it in much younger individuals.

  • Having other auto-immune diseases - Rheumatoid arthritis and type 1 diabetes increases the risk for Hashimoto thyroiditis.

  • Having a family member with this type of condition (hereditary) - The disease may run in families but research has not found the gene carrier between family members.

You should seek medical assistance if you are experiencing these common symptoms of Hashimoto's thyroiditis:

  • Goiter - Enlargement of the thyroid gland, non-cancerous bulge on the neck. This can cause problems such as throat pain or trouble with swallowing, breathing, or speaking.

  • Underachieve thyroid (sluggish thyroid or low metabolism) - It is common to experience the following symptoms when your thyroid doesn't make enough thyroid hormones:

• Tiredness

• Muscle weakness and joint pain

• Constipation

• Weight gain

• Sensitive to cold

• Depression

• Anxiety

• Hair and skin changes

You may also experience overactive thyroid, when the thyroid is attacked by antibodies. It may at first make more thyroid hormones, called thyroid storm or Hashitoxicosis. This may not happen to everyone but when it does you are most likely to have the following symptoms:

  • Sensitive to heat

  • Fast heart rate

  • Sweating

  • Weight loss

  • Tremors

  • Anxiety

  • Irritability

  • Trouble falling or staying asleep

The best way to treat Hashimoto's thyroiditis is by getting to the underlying cause of the disease. Also, it's important to investigate food sensitivities, food sources that are potentially causing inflammation inside your body.

According to the Environmental Exposures and Autoimmune Thyroid Disease, environmental toxicity such as lead, mercury and cadmium are common thyroid hormone disruptors. They do so by interfering with iodine uptake and trigger autoimmune disease.

The best thing you can do right now whether you’re currently diagnosed with Hashimoto or living with underactive thyroid is to AVOID gluten completely and its sister derivatives, especially:

  • Wheat

  • Rye

  • Barley

  • Spelt

  • Amaranth

  • Oats

  • Rice

  • Kamut

  • Food delayed sensitivities detected by a blood sample

Lastly, if you're looking to learn more about the association between leaky gut and Hashimoto thyroiditis then I highly encourage you to watch my recent video HERE where I discussed the step-by-step plan to reverse Hashimoto naturally by treating the root cause.

CLICK HERE TO WATCH VIDEO


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