We all know that with the month of January comes a start to a new year. What you may not know, however, is that January is Thyroid Awareness Month! While you may be unfamiliar with the thyroid and its function in the body, the team here at Integrative Cardiology Center of Long Island wants to bring awareness to it. Our functional medicine doctor wants to share the importance of monitoring thyroid health, and what you can do to improve it.
What Does Your Thyroid Do?
The thyroid is a gland found in your throat that is part of the endocrine system. It produces and releases hormones that help in regulating your metabolism. The hormones produced by the thyroid can:
- Affect the pace of your heartbeat.
- Affect the deepness of your breath.
- Determine your body’s natural temperature.
- Control your cholesterol levels.
Common Issues of The Thyroid
Did you know that over 12% of people will experience thyroid-related issues at some point in their lives? Since it is Thyroid Awareness Month, our functional medicine doctor wants to bring attention to some of the most common ones to help ensure that you stay safe and informed:
- Hypothyroidism: This condition can cause feelings of depression in addition to weight gain. This condition occurs as a result of the immune system attacking the thyroid, causing issues with hormone production.
- Hyperthyroidism: When the thyroid begins to produce too many hormones, it is known as hyperthyroidism. As a result, those who suffer from this condition can experience increased heart rates and extreme weight loss.
- Nodules: Nodules are growths found on the thyroid gland. At times they can be cancerous and lead to too much hormone production.
- Goiters: A goiter occurs when the thyroid gland begins to swell. Goiters can lead to the protrusion in the neck, causing a notable bulge and fits of coughing.
Maintaining a Healthy Thyroid:
As with any part of the body, it is important to maintain the overall health of the thyroid. An imbalance of hormones that can result from a malfunctioning thyroid can lead to many other problems within the body. To keep your thyroid healthy, we recommend that you follow the below advice:
- Increase Dietary Fiber: This will help improve your digestion, meaning the thyroid won’t have to work as hard to maintain a healthy metabolism.
- Eat Nutritious Foods: Including a hearty mix of fruits, vegetables, nuts, and whole-grains in your diet can help ensure that you are hitting all of your nutritional benchmarks and improve your overall health.
- Limit Your Saturated Fats: Saturated fats can lead to increased levels of cholesterol and some forms of cancer. To avoid this, try substituting saturated fats or monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats found naturally in nuts and legumes.
The Integrative Cardiology Center Of Long Island- An Expert Functional Medicine Doctor
The team here at Integrative Cardiology Center of Long Island prides itself on providing holistic forms of treatment to benefit each patient. Thyroid Awareness Month is the perfect time to book an appointment and make sure your thyroid is functioning properly. Our functional medicine doctor will work with you to correct any issues in your diet and lifestyle that are contributing to your thyroid problems!