The thyroid gland may become either overactive (hyperthyroidism) or underactive (hypothyroidism). Regardless of the case, it keeps this butterfly-shaped gland situated in your neck from doing its roles which come aplenty.
Just like other glands in the body, the thyroid produces and secretes hormones — chemicals that regulate and control the various actions of the cells and organs. The following are some of the most important duties carried out by this gland:
- Skeletal and cardiac muscle activity regulation
- Bone repair
- Transportation of electrolytes to where they’re needed
- Regulation of growth and development
- Control of sex drive
- Regulation of the menstrual cycle
- Synthesis of protein by the cells
- Conversion of food into fuel the body may use for energy
- Production of hormones that regulate metabolism
- Regulation of brain functioning
- Conversion of the antioxidant beta-carotene into vitamin A
With the sheer number of roles it needs to carry out 24 hours a day and 7 days a week, it’s apparent that keeping the thyroid gland in optimal state is of utmost importance. Otherwise, a host of health problems is sure to surface. Such is brought about by the gland’s too much or too little production and secretion of hormones necessary for the fulfillment of the several different duties mentioned above.
Springing into action right away is imperative in case a problem with the thyroid gland is encountered. This helps prevent hormonal imbalance that can have a negative impact on your health as assorted of bodily functions are affected.
There are certain herbs that are known to help keep your thyroid gland in superb form, and some of the best ones can be found below. Many of them can be easily purchased at today’s health food stores. Prior to taking herbs, it’s highly recommended to let your doctor know about your plan so that you may be guided accordingly. This is especially true if you have a medical condition or currently taking prescription drugs that may interact with these herbs.
- Flaxseeds – Some of the most accessible solutions for thyroid problems are flaxseeds. You may have heard that they are good for the digestive tract as they are packed with fiber that wards off constipation and helps reduce your risk of having colon cancer. Taking a teaspoon of flaxseeds a day can help maintain a healthy thyroid gland.
- Licorice – Opt for this herb if you have an underactive thyroid because it helps get rid of fatigue — one of the symptoms of hypothyroidism. Also, licorice is known to help reduce your chances of having thyroid cancer.
- Evening primrose oil – This one is commonly mentioned when PMS and the symptoms of menopause are tackled. However, evening primrose oil is beneficial, too, for those with underactive thyroid. It also helps manage some of the symptoms associated with the problem, including heavy menstruation and hair loss.
- Ginger – It’s no secret that ginger is good for indigestion and joint pain. But did you know that it is also excellent for your thyroid? Whether added to dishes or taken as tea, ginger supplies some of the minerals that the thyroid gland needs for proper functioning: potassium, magnesium and zinc.
- Bladderwhack – This herb is ideal for someone whose thyroid gland is underactive. What makes this herb beneficial for hypothyroidism is its good iodine content, a mineral so important for thyroid health. The intake of bladderwhack supplies the gland with sufficient amounts of iodine necessary for is proper functioning.
- Nettle – Just like bladderwhack, this herb also supplies the thyroid with iodine. Taking it in tea form is the most convenient way to help deal with either hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism.
- Echinacea – Known to boost the immune system, echinacea is also beneficial for individuals with overactive thyroid. It is the root of the herb that is known to have a favorable impact on the gland. Instead of buying Echinacea supplements which do not contain the root part, it’s a better idea to purchase echinacea root and steep it in boiling water to come up with a thyroid-friendly beverage.