By Dr Rajneesh Kour
Ayurvedic Treatment for Thyroid Conditions – What you need to know:
Ayurveda believes that almost all the conditions in a human body are either due to an imbalance of the doshas, stress, improper lifestyle, not eating according to your body type(dosha). All these reasons are enough to accumulate toxins in the body and these toxins are the actual root cause of the diseases.
Ayurveda focuses not only on the symptoms of any disease, rather it goes into the root cause of that particular diseases, to get rid of it.
Thyroid conditions are surprisingly prevalent and all too often stress related. Holistic Ayurvedic treatments for thyroid conditions have proven to be effective in many cases as they are aimed to get to the root cause of the problem.
An ayurvedic approach towards a disease focuses on balancing the body (doshas), suggesting proper diet according to the body type, lifestyle improvement and ultimately detoxifying the body from the diseases causing toxins
The two most common forms of thyroid conditions are hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism. Both conditions are caused by a malfunctioning thyroid gland. The thyroid gland is responsible for producing energy throughout the body. Its functions affect almost all organs within the body with the exception of the brain, spleen, ovaries, testes and the thyroid gland itself. The two principal energy producing hormones that the thyroid gland generates are known as T3 (Triiodothyronine) and T4 (Thyroxine).
Causes of thyroid conditions:
Today’s modern world can have a severe impact on the function of the thyroid gland. Stress, in particular, is known to cause thyroid problems. When we are stressed, the adrenal glands pump Cortisol into the body. The function is meant to cope with moments of extreme danger but all too often Cortisol is pumped into the system when it is not required. This can build up a type of tissue resistance to normal thyroid signals.
Naturally, when the thyroid gland does not function as it should, problems will emerge throughout the body. The thyroid gland will produce either too many (hyperthyroidism) or too few hormones (hypothyroidism).
Hypothyroidism and its symptoms
Hypothyroidism is due to decreased functioning of the thyroid gland. T4 level decreases and TSH level increases in the body.
Hypothyroidism affects approximately between 3.8 and 4.6% of the population. It is mostly caused by a lack of iodine in the diet.
Symptoms associated with hypothyroidism will normally develop over time. They include the following
- General fatigue
- Low blood pressure
- Reactive Hypoglycemia
- Unexplained weight gain
- Dry skin
- A puffy face
- General muscle weakness
- Increased cholesterol levels
- Stiffness and general muscle soreness
- Swelling of the joints and associated soreness
When these symptoms persistently hang around, it may be time to consult your physician. When left untreated hypothyroidism can lead to an enlarged heart, heart failure and an accumulation of fluid around the lungs.
Statistics show that hypothyroidism in women occurs at higher rates than men.
Hyperthyroidism/Grave’s disease and its symptoms
Approximately 1% of the population suffers from hyperthyroidism.
Hyperthyroidism is an excess secretion of thyroid hormones in the body. It includes many conditions such as GRAVE’S diseases, Goitre and Thyroiditis. In Ayurveda, hyperthyroidism is a condition due to increased PITTA in the body. Due to this increased pitta the digestive fire also increases, further imbalancing the metabolism of the body.
Mild cases of hyperthyroidism display few symptoms. As the condition worsens, the following symptoms become apparent.
- Excessive sweating and intolerance to heat
- Fatigue, lethargy and general tiredness
- Reduced ability to concentrate
- Increased bowel movements
- Brittle hair
- Weight loss
- Disturbed sleeping patterns
- Increased heart rate and palpitations
- Feelings of anxiety and nervousness
On rare occasions, hyperthyroidism weight gain may occur. Generally, this can be put down to one of these factors -:
- An increased appetite caused by the body burning energy at faster than usual levels, causing the body to consume more calories than it is burning. Maintaining a healthy diet and an exercise program can help combat this.
- The commencement of hyperthyroidism treatment which is aimed at returning the body to its natural state will see the body produce less thyroid hormone than previously. Some weight gain during hyperthyroidism treatment can be expected, however, if there is concern about the amount of weight gain, a doctor should be consulted.
Hashimoto’s Disease and Grave’s Disease
Hashimoto’s disease is an autoimmune disease that can be responsible for causing Hypothyroidism. Grave’s disease is also an autoimmune disorder. Its symptoms are closely related to those of hyperthyroidism.
Ayurvedic treatment for Thyroid Conditions
If you are seeking hypothyroidism natural treatment options then Ayurvedic remedies are well worth considering. ‘
The Ayurvedic line of treatment for Thyroid conditions mainly includes rebalancing the doshas in the body and eliminating the diseases causing toxins or ama.
An Ayurvedic Wellness plan for the condition includes various herbs like Kanchnar guggul, Shatavari, Arogyavardhini Vati, Chitrakadi Vati etc. (as prescribed by the Ayurvedic consultant), followed by a treatment and detoxification plan.
It also includes a diet plan to balance the digestion and metabolism as well as lifestyle changes including Pranayam, yoga, meditation etc.
The treatment is a holistic and supportive one. The aim of Ayurveda treatment for thyroid disease, in general, is to correct the Dosha imbalance. This correction will help to restore the proper functions of the thyroid gland.
The use of Ayurveda medicines has the aim of restoring the Dosha balance and to facilitate proper thyroid function. All Ayurvedic types of thyroid medications must be taken under the supervision of an experienced Ayurvedic doctor.
While there is a high prevalence of thyroid conditions, they are treatable. Everybody’s individual circumstance is different and treatments will differ according to individual circumstances. Ayurvedic techniques are designed to get to the root cause of all problems.
If you suspect that you do have a thyroid condition you should consult an Ayurvedic Doctor