January gives you the wonderful opportunity to start fresh and take an in-depth look at what you most want to change about yourself. If one of your priorities is your health, use World Thyroid Month as the perfect springboard to learn more about your thyroid. This includes learning about the importance of thyroid testing, and how focuses like thyroid awareness month can help you create a healthy future. If you’re ready to learn more, keep reading!
What is the thyroid, and what does it do?
As you may already know, the thyroid is a small organ shaped like a butterfly in your lower neck. Most people don’t even know it’s there until there is a problem. The main job of your thyroid gland is to produce hormones that are then spread throughout the body. Those hormones are fuel for our body and are required for many vital processes. So, thyroid health is critically linked to full-body health.
Thyroid problems, which we’ll discuss next, are often reported in aging adults. But keeping your thyroid healthy should be a lifelong goal, even in your younger years! This is part of the reason World Thyroid Month exists — to spread awareness about thyroid health and its role in long-term life.
Are thyroid problems common?
Unfortunately, thyroid disorders are very common in the UK. Approximately 1 in 20 people report a thyroid disorder at some point in their lives. Many thyroid health problems go undiagnosed because many of the symptoms of thyroid problems are easy to mistake as aging.
What are common thyroid problem symptoms?
- Feeling cold even in warmer weather
- Having excessively dry skin
- Hair thinning
As you can see, these common thyroid symptoms are easy to assume as being part of natural aging. These symptoms can sometimes seem as though they are opposites of each other, too. This is because hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism, two of the most common thyroid disorders, have opposite symptoms.
How can I protect my thyroid?
There are several ways for you to protect your thyroid health in the short term and long term. The good news is that these are simple to add to your daily life, and they’ll make a real difference! As with any health change, the simple things can make as much of a difference as the big changes — if not more so.
Consider thyroid testing
This is first for a reason. It does give the best and most accurate thyroid health results. As you already know, thyroid health impacts the entire body. So, thyroid awareness month is the perfect opportunity to learn about and consider thyroid testing. Testing is the more accurate way to manage your thyroid health and diagnose a potential health problem earlier. Testing monitors TSH levels and lets you know if there is a reason to contact your GP about further testing.
Adapt to a thyroid diet
You can pamper your thyroid by eating a thyroid diet. There is no set diet to treat a thyroid disorder. But you can do your part to help keep your body strong through a varied diet. You can also consider vitamin D supplements and eating proper amounts of calcium, iron, and zinc. These are connected to healthy TSH levels. These can’t prevent a problem from developing, but they greatly support a healthy thyroid.
Keep your GP up to date on your health
Since thyroid health symptoms can often be mistaken for other typical aging health problems, including menopause and genetic factors, keep your GP in the loop. If you notice a change in temperature regulation or excessive hair shedding, book an appointment with your physician. Also, document any changes like this in a journal so you can look back and know when they started, and if they have worsened or bettered over time.
World Thyroid Month is all about positive thyroid changes
Celebrating your thyroid health starts with getting the right information about your thyroid’s goals and what your thyroid needs for top health. With that, you can understand why thyroid health matters so much, giving you the fuel to determine what you can do daily and long-term for your future.
Making small, positive changes to how you prioritise your thyroid will only bring good things to your life. Even if it’s not something that you might have thought about before today, it’s never too late to start creating a healthy future for your thyroid. Lean on Test Your Intolerance for all your health testing needs.