Thyroid – what is thyroid and why is it important for us?

10th May 2016 - 3 minutes read

I would like to share with you something that is maybe not very familiar to you, yet so very relevant. Everyone of you has one, and if not functioning properly can be a cause of many health concerns. Any idea yet?

Have you been experiencing symptoms such as:
weight gain
tiredness
dry or falling hair
brittle nails
constipation
dry skin
anxiety
depression
memory problems
insomnia
infertility
excess sweating
acne

If yes, then this is definitely for you to learn more about.

This week I am going to introduce you to THYROID. What thyroid is, and why is it so important for us?

Thyroid is a small butterfly-shaped gland located in the neck just behind the Adam’s apple. The thyroid gland is producing hormones that not only directly affect our metabolism but influence the functionality of every cell in our body. The thyroid hormones directly acts on the brain, cardiovascular system, digestive and liver function, bone and red blood cell metabolism just to name a few.

The thyroid produces mainly an inactive form of hormone called T4 (thyroxine). T4 is actually a pre-hormone which is useless unless converted into an active form that’s usable by our cells. This activated form of the thyroid hormone is called T3 (triiodothyronine). The secretion of thyroid hormones is very tightly regulated by our brain. Hypothalamus (control centre of our brain) releases thyroxin releasing hormone (TRH) which stimulates another gland called the pituitary gland (at the bottom of the hypothalamus) to release thyroxin stimulation hormone (TSH). TSH then acts on the thyroid to secrete (T4), which has to be converted to T3 (mainly in the gut and liver) before reaching our cells.

Thyroid and thyroid hormones are not only influenced by our brain, but also by other glands such as our adrenals, pancreas or ovaries, as well as our liver and digestive system. As you can see the thyroid hormone physiology is very complex. The production, conversion, transport to a cell and uptake by a cell is very well orchestrated procedure and error in any of these steps can cause thyroid malfunction.

 

Next week I am going to be telling you about what happens if your thyroid starts playing up.

Meanwhile if you have any questions about your symptoms or would like to discuss any of your health concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me.