Doctors May Say, "It's just in your head", But The Truth Is It Could Just Be Your Thyroid!

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What are some common thyroid symptoms?

If you're feeling tired most of the time… and energy drinks DON'T WORK!

If you're struggling with weight… and diet & exercise DON'T WORK!

If you have trouble sleeping... and sleeping aids DON'T WORK!

If your hair is thinning / dry… and expensive shampoos DON'T WORK!

If you're anxious or depressed… and prescription drugs DON'T WORK!

If your skin seems to be aging… and boutique skin creams DON'T WORK!



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Fatigue, anxiety, weight gain, mood swings, depression and now… HAIR LOSS! It was just part of being a stressed out, overworked, single mother of two high-energy, high maintenance teenage girls. At least, that's what Karen thought.

After suffering in silence for several years, she decided to make an appointment with her doctor. She hated going to the doctor. Most of all, she dreaded the first question she knew he'd be asking. "Trouble sleeping, Karen? So, what's been going on in your life?" She knew he really didn't care, and she'd have to quickly outline her crazy life, which would only create more stress.

Between making sure her girls "really" did all of their homework, getting them to school… to cheer practice… to soccer games… to assorted events with their friends… and still working 40 hours plus at a high-pressure job – she rarely had any time for herself.

Besides feeling rundown and tired just about every day, Karen was very concerned about the weight she'd been gaining – and her hair. The weight gain she attributed to her CRAZY schedule and fast food meals on the run. However, she had always been proud of her long, thick, wavy brown hair. Over the last couple of years, however, she had become alarmed over the amount of hair she was noticing in her brush.

Just as she was about to ask her doctor about her other symptoms, he was scribbling out a couple of prescriptions, and halfway out the door told her, "If these don't work, come back in two weeks."

He wrote her one prescription for sleeping pills, plus another prescription for stress called Alprazolam, better known as Xanax. The entire appointment lasted maybe five minutes and solved nothing. It wasn't until several years later that Karen, after deciding to take matters into her own hands, discovered that the real culprit behind her mounting health problems was her thyroid – and most importantly – a lack of iodine in her body.

When was the last time you thought about your thyroid… or iodine for that matter? Like Karen, most people attribute WEIGHT GAIN, FATIGUE, HAIR LOSS and DEPRESSION to stress in today's world. As a result, we SPEND:

That's because your thyroid is letting you down! And the answer may very well be as SIMPLE as adding iodine to your diet!




Okay, exactly what is the thyroid?

Briefly, the thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland located in the front of the neck. If you're a guy (though it's women who suffer from the majority of thyroid issues), it's about where the necktie knot would be positioned. The Thyroid has a big job – it's responsible for cranking out several important hormones, aptly called thyroid hormones. Thyroid hormones are literally the power brokers of the body, influencing metabolism, moods, growth and development, body temperature and much more. In fact, during infancy and childhood, adequate thyroid hormone is crucial for brain development. 1

and don't even know it!

The thyroid is like the troublemaker who starts a fight, but ducks out before throwing a punch – and rarely gets the blame. And so it goes for our little troublemaker – the thyroid. When we gain weight – we buy the latest diet pills or shakes on the market. When we can't sleep – we're off to the doctor to get a prescription for sleeping pills. When our hair is looking dry and seems to be thinning – we're spending hundreds of dollars on the latest, new shampoo on the market. We blame everything else – including ourselves – without turning our attention to the true culprit of these physical problems… the thyroid.

A staggering 13 million Americans 2 (and that's a very conservative estimate) have thyroids that, like an older car out of warranty, are constantly showing signs of wear and tear. And women, who endure the brunt of thyroid problems, are five to eight times more likely to suffer from thyroid dysfunction and iodine deficiency than men. 3

The thyroid is perhaps the most ignored, under-diagnosed and misdiagnosed medical problem in the world. Yet, the thyroid should immediately be the NUMBER ONE SUSPECT for everything from postpartum depression to weight gain… from anxiety to hair loss. 4 There's really no end to the amount of havoc this butterfly-shaped, hormone-regulating gland can reek on our bodies.

Is your thyroid in the 'fast lane'… or working at a 'snail's pace'?

Hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid).
Simply put, when the body produces more thyroid hormones than you need, it's called hyperthyroidism – more commonly known as an "overactive thyroid." If you've got a "hyper" thyroid, you may be experiencing some – if not all – of the following symptoms: 5

  • Weight loss, even if you eat the same or more food
  • Eating more than usual
  • Rapid or irregular heartbeat or pounding of your heart
  • Anxiety
  • Irritability
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Trembling in your hands and fingers
  • Increased sweating
  • Increased sensitivity to heat
  • Muscle weakness
  • More frequent bowel movements
  • Less frequent menstrual periods with lighter than normal menstrual flow

Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid).
On the other hand, hypothyroidism is by far the most widespread thyroid disorder among women. Known as an underactive thyroid, it means your thyroid has gone into a "slow down" mode and may be enlarging in an effort to produce enough hormones. Many women report feeling lethargic and chronically tired even before any other symptoms begin to surface. Some of the most common symptoms of hypothyroidism include:

  • Weight gain, even though you are not eating more food
  • Increased sensitivity to cold
  • Constipation
  • Muscle weakness
  • Joint or muscle pain
  • Depression
  • Fatigue (feeling very tired)
  • Pale dry skin
  • A puffy face
  • A hoarse voice
  • Excessive menstrual bleeding

Hopefully, by now you're starting to tally up your symptoms. Maybe you've been too hard on yourself. Maybe your weight gain and lack of energy ISN'T due to a lack of will power or stress after all. Cut yourself some slack, and start considering your THYROID!

It's just wrong! You're doing everything possible to lose weight! You're watching what you eat… spending a ridiculous amount of money on diet shakes, low-fat packaged meals and diet pills… you're exercising when you can... and you're still gaining weight. The truth is… your thyroid may be sabotaging all of your efforts. It's your thyroid's job to regulate your metabolism – and it could very well be out of whack – and RUNNING VERY LOW ON IODINE! And speaking of metabolism, here are some mind numbing facts. Your metabolism is determined by measuring the amount of oxygen used by the body over a specific amount of time. This is called the basal metabolic rate (BMR). In a number of studies, patients whose thyroid glands were not working properly were found to have low BMRs. When you eliminate all of the technical jargon and get right down to the "nitty gritty," having a healthy, functioning thyroid is key to maintaining your weight. 6

Why Even Doctors' Thyroid Tests Are a Confusing MESS!

Even when you finally get a doctor to REALLY LISTEN long enough to order thyroid testing – the results can be all over the map. There are vast testing ranges of what constitutes "normal" and plenty of disagreement among doctors about how to interrupt them. In many cases, just as we read in Karen's story, many women are simply sent home with a prescription for anti-depressants or sleeping pills (or both), while the real cause of all of your problems goes unaddressed. Currently, there is a raging controversy brewing in the medical community as to the reliance of today's "gold standard" for thyroid testing called the TSH Test. Again, while doctors almost universally depend on this test to make the correct diagnosis, there is widespread disagreement as to what constitutes the "normal range." There's simply no telling how many people are left out in the cold suffering from a myriad of classic thyroid symptoms (caused by iodine deficiency) because they're test results came back within the "normal" range. 7

Oprah Reveals Her Thyroid Nightmare.

Oprah Winfrey, one of the nation's most beloved public figures, documented her struggles with her thyroid in the January 2009 cover story of "Oprah." The following is an excerpt from her story. 8

"It happened slowly. In February 2007, at 53, I started to have some health issues. At first I was unable to sleep for days. My legs started swelling. My weight started creeping up, first 5 pounds, and then 10 pounds. I was lethargic and irritable. My internal clock seemed totally out of whack. I began having rushing heart palpitations every time I worked out. Okay, I've never loved daily exercise, but this was different. I actually developed a fear of working out. I was scared that I would pass out. Or worse. I felt as if I didn't know my own body anymore.

After many trips to various doctors, I received a diagnosis. I had hyperthyroidism (an overactive thyroid that can speed up metabolism and cause weight loss—but of course didn't make me lose a single pound) and then gradually started moving into hypothyroidism (a sluggish metabolism that can cause fatigue and weight gain). My doctor prescribed medication and warned me that I must "learn to embrace hunger" or I would immediately gain weight. Believe me, no part of me was prepared to embrace hunger.

It seemed as if the struggle I'd had with weight my entire adult life was now officially over. I felt completely defeated. I thought, "I give up. I give up. Fat wins." All these years I'd had only myself to blame for lack of willpower. Now I had an official, documented excuse.

The thyroid diagnosis felt like some kind of prison sentence. I was so frustrated that I started eating whatever I wanted—and that's never good. My drug of choice is food. I use food for the same reasons an addict uses drugs: to comfort, to soothe, to ease stress.

I switched doctors and still gained weight. At one point I was on three medications: one for heart palpitations, another for high blood pressure, another to moderate my thyroid. Who knew this tiny butterfly gland at the base of the throat had so much power?"

Oprah finally got her thyroid under control, while helping to educate people about how a small, butterfly gland can RUIN YOUR LIFE! And how your thyroid CANNOT work efficiently without the proper levels of IODINE!

Let's focus on the ONE ingredient that can STOP your weight gain… EASE your anxiety… HELP you sleep… THICKEN your hair and RESTORE your smooth skin by keeping your thyroid functioning properly – IODINE!

Iodine is the fuel your thyroid requires to operate efficiently.

For some elements, such as Vitamin D, all it takes is a little sunshine and presto – the body starts making Vitamin D. Unfortunately, our body cannot manufacture one drop of iodine on its own. On the contrary, we are solely reliant on outside dietary sources for the iodine in our diets – which helps to fuel the production of the all-important thyroid hormones. A few of the foods rich in iodine are fish from the ocean, iodized table salt and a number of dairy products – even ice cream contains iodine. 9

How the Thyroid is affected by an iodine deficiency.

Iodine is critical to proper thyroid function. As we mentioned, it is the key element needed for the production of thyroid hormones, along with regulating our metabolism. When the thyroid lacks iodine, it works overtime to keep up with our body's demand for hormones. It works so hard, in fact, that it begins to enlarge as iodine levels fall, leading to hypothyroidism.

Despite the importance of iodine, most people have NO CLUE they're not getting enough in their diets – or that the body IS NOT processing it properly (more about that shortly). As a result, we spend countless millions on diet pills, shakes and dangerous surgeries… and millions more on anti-depressants; energy drinks, hair and skin care products. And while some of these products may serve a purpose, people are shocked to learn that one inexpensive supplement formulated strictly for thyroid support could be just what the doctor should have ordered, if they weren't so anxious to simply write a prescription for one symptom at a time.

Here are a few common symptoms of iodine deficiency… do any apply to you?

Goiter: For reasons we'll discuss in a minute, goiters are making a comeback in the U.S. As we've discussed, the body is constantly pumping out thyroid hormones, which requires a steady stream of iodine to fuel this important organ. If your body lacks iodine, the thyroid gland generally enlarges in an attempt to keep up the pace. A goiter is nothing more than an enlarged thyroid.

Iodine deficiency is the most common cause of thyroid enlargement and goiters in the world. Unchecked, nodules can develop in the thyroid and people with a large goiter may experience severe symptoms, including choking, especially when lying down, and difficulty swallowing and breathing.

Pregnancy-related problems: Severe iodine deficiency among pregnant women has been linked to miscarriages, stillbirth, preterm delivery, and congenital abnormalities in their babies. Congenital hypothyroidism due to iodine deficiency is the most common preventable cause of mental retardation in the world. In fact, even mild iodine deficiency during pregnancy may be a contributing factor to low intelligence in children. 10

If iodine is available in salt, saltwater fish, eggs and dairy products – then why aren't we automatically getting enough in our diets?

On the surface, solving any potential iodine deficiency SHOULD be as simple as eating a normal, healthy diet. After all, iodine is relatively plentiful in a number of foods we eat, including saltwater fish and iodized salt. However, as our thyroid invariably starts slowing down with age (usually after 40), it simply isn't able to assimilate iodine as efficiently as it once did… and that's when iodine supplements can make all the difference in the world.

In addition to our thyroids slowing down and working less efficiently with age, the relentless exposures to toxins in the environment can actually FORCE iodine out of our system. For example, fluorides so prevalent in our drinking water and toothpastes can actually cause the body to leach out iodine from the body. 11

In addition to our thyroids slowing down and working less efficiently with age, the relentless exposures to toxins in the environment can actually FORCE iodine out of our system. Other known reasons for iodine deficiency are modern farming techniques that have depleted our once fertile soils, and the consumption of processed foods that can actually block the uptake of iodine in the body.

Lack of iodine in our diets directly linked to underactive thyroid and weight gain.

Ironically, another reason for the resurgence in thyroid cases due to iodine deficiency is our constant striving for better health. In today's exercise, organic-driven, heath conscious society, low sodium diets are commonplace – and SALT has become a dirty, four letter word! However, after analyzing six years of health data for nearly 800 people, researchers from Spain found (not surprisingly) that those folks with the lowest levels of iodine also had the highest BMI (body mass index), and were more likely to become overweight during the six years of the study. 12

As SALT consumption goes down… thyroid issues RISE!

As a rule, MOST people believe that low sodium diets are healthier, but there are conflicting opinions on the subject. One thing is for sure, people are more aware about their salt consumption than ever before, even at restaurants. And eateries are responding by offering a wide selection of lower sodium menu items. 13 As a result, salt consumption (a significant source of iodine) in the U.S. has dropped by 50 percent from 1971 to 2001. And while this figure seems to have stabilized, the net result is a substantial decrease in iodine consumption. Is it any wonder so many people are complaining of thyroid issues, such as weight gain, anxiety, depression, skin and hair problems, lack of sleep, low energy levels and many more problems?

The longest living people in the world consume large amounts of iodine in their diets.

In 2006, Japan remained #1 in terms of life expectancy, with women living on average to the ripe old age of 86. Okinawa, for example, is home of the longest-living people in the world with 47 centenarians per 100,000 people. The U.S., by contrast, boasts only 10 folks over the 100-year old mark per 100,000 in population. Experts say their diet is a major contributing factor to their robust health, consisting of loads of leafy vegetables rich in vitamins and minerals, as well as iodine-rich food, such as seaweed and seafood. In fact, people in Okinawa ingest up to 13,000 mcg of iodine daily, well above the American average of just 150 mcg. 14

What foods contain iodine?

Fish (such as cod and tuna), seaweed, shrimp, and other seafood, which are generally rich in iodine.

Dairy Products (such as milk, yogurt, and cheese) and products made from grains, including breads and cereals, are also good sources of iodine in American diets.

Fruits & Vegetables also contain some iodine, although the amount depends on the iodine in the soil where the crops were grown… and what types of fertilizers were used.

Iodized Salt, which is readily available in the U.S. and many other countries. On the other hand, processed foods, such as canned soups, almost never contain iodized salt. 15 But as mentioned earlier, just because you're consuming iodine – doesn't mean your body is assimilating it properly.

An underperforming thyroid due to lack of iodine can make pregnancy weight IMPOSSIBLE to shed.

No matter how many exercise programs you try, how many crazy diets you've tried, that extra bulge that showed up with your baby just refuses to budge. A large number of women experience the frustration of difficult-to-lose "baby weight," especially after their second or third child. 16 Despite doing everything possible to shed those unwanted pregnancy pounds, NOTHING SEEMS TO WORK. The reason? Your child scarfed up most of your iodine supply during your pregnancy. Since iodine is key to brain function, this was nature's way of ensuring proper development of your baby's brain and nervous system… though it left you with a dwindling supply of iodine. That's why pregnant women are told to increase their iodine consumption to 250 micrograms a day, though an estimated seven percent of American women fail to do so.

That's why the thyroid gland enlarges slightly in healthy women during pregnancy, as it works overtime to produce enough hormones for both mother and child – with the child getting the lion's share. The real issues occur after the second and third child, when any remaining iodine reserves have been depleted and mom is left with an underperforming thyroid and extra weight due to Hypothyroidism that, as we've outlined, is often undiagnosed.

Your thyroid produces 4 different hormones… and that requires iodine in your body.

While you're busy going about your daily routine, your thyroid is also busy cranking out four different types of hormones. The most important of these for your overall health are called T3 and T4. As we've discussed, you need to ingest enough iodine to fuel the production of these hormones, or an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) could result leading to a host of health problems – not to mention weight gain. 17

A growing number of enlightened doctors are looking toward supplementation instead of automatically writing a prescription. One of the most positively reviewed, all-natural supplements on the market over the last couple of years is a product called Thyroid Max.

Thyroid Max Answers Need for Quality, Natural Product that provides the proper amount of dietary, pharmaceutical grade iodine to your diet.

Unfortunately, Thyroid Max isn't available in any stores. It was formulated for people interested in taking more responsibility for their own health, without relying strictly on today's pharmaceutical-driven medical system.

Thyroid Max is a robust, high quality supplement made from antioxidant-rich seaweed harvested from pristine waters in the South Pacific expressly for this product. Thyroid Max is perfect for people who want to regain control of their health without lining the pockets of big drug companies, or doctors more interested in the number of patients they can squeeze in per day than actually taking the time to listen. Thyroid Max provides the ideal blend of iodine and iodide required for proper thyroid function. Yes, there are other products on retail shelves, but they are much too watered down to truly offer noticeable thyroid benefits.

Instead of spending a fortune on diets, hair loss products, skin creams, anxiety & depression drugs and sleeping pills… take your health into your own hands by addressing your underperforming thyroid with...

Thyroid Max.

Thyroid Max is formulated to the highest standards and uses the exact ingredients recommended by the Women's Health Institute of Sedona.

If you've been frustrated by the weight gain, feelings of anxiety and depression, sudden hair loss and forever being tired, you could either take a mountain of prescription drugs – which often have their own horrible side effects – or you can try a bottle of Thyroid Max. When you're taking Thyroid Max, you no longer have to worry or wonder if you're getting enough iodine in your diet! That's why Thyroid Max is the smartest supplement you can take for your thyroid.

Iodine not only fuels your Thyroid, it also plays a role throughout your body, from brain function… to your eyes… and much more!

Every Thyroid Max easy-to-swallow capsule contains a full five mg of iodine, along with 7.5 mg of iodide to create the ideal formulation for boosting a stalled thyroid. These ingredients work in tandem to wake up your thyroid on a cellular level. Thyroid Max also contains Selenium, known for its unique ability to activate your important T3 hormone.

YOU HAVE A CHOICE: You can continue to feeling tired… struggling with your weight… wishing you had thicker hair and smoother skin… wishing you didn't have to take antidepressants to feel better…

Or you can take matters into your own hands by trying Thyroid Max.

Imagine feeling like yourself again… full of energy… happy… at your ideal weight and buying the cute, form-fitting clothes you used to LOVE wearing. That's why people are choosing Thyroid Max. Just take Thyroid Max daily as you would a vitamin, and let Thyroid Max go to work – making you feel great without having to guzzle multiple cups of coffee and energy drinks just to stay awake during the day.

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Currently taking prescription thyroid drugs? Please read the following.

For those of you currently being prescribed thyroid hormones, using Thyroid Max could reduce the amount of prescription drugs you may need to take. Above all, please consult your physician before starting Thyroid Max.

Still not convinced?

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"The thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland that sits low on the front of the neck. Your thyroid lies below your Adam's apple, along the front of the windpipe. The thyroid has two side lobes, connected by a bridge (isthmus) in the middle. When the thyroid is its normal size, you can't feel it. Brownish-red in color, the thyroid is rich with blood vessels. Nerves important for voice quality also pass through the thyroid. The thyroid secretes several hormones, collectively called thyroid hormones. The main hormone is thyroxine, also called T4. Thyroid hormones act throughout the body, influencing metabolism, growth and development, and body temperature. During infancy and childhood, adequate thyroid hormone is crucial for brain development."

Summary: "At least 13 million Americans suffer from thyroid disorders, and in more than 80% of cases, the problem is an underactive thyroid gland — hypothyroidism. The condition is more common in women, and the rate rises with age, reaching 20% in women over 65. The interest for mental health is that thyroid deficiency may be associated with cognitive and emotional disturbances, and thyroid hormones may be useful in the treatment of depression. Sitting at the base of the throat, the thyroid gland produces hormones that regulate basal metabolic rate, the speed at which our bodies burn food for energy. The thyroid gets its directions from the hypothalamus, at the base of the brain, by way of the pituitary gland. On a signal from the hypothalamus, the pituitary sends thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) into the bloodstream. It travels to the thyroid gland and causes the release of thyroxine (T4), which is partly converted into triiodothyronine (T3). Through a feedback mechanism, the hypothalamus determines when levels of T4 and T3 are low and alerts the pituitary to supply more TSH. The symptoms of hypothyroidism are variable and sometimes hard to pin down. They may include fatigue, sluggishness, cold intolerance, weight gain, constipation, muscle or joint pain, thin and brittle hair or fingernails, reduced sexual drive, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and a slow heart rate. Patients may also have problems with concentration and memory." Prepared by the editors of Harvard Health Publications in consultation with Jeffery R. Garber, M.D., Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School; Chief of Endocrinology, Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates; Physician, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center; Associate Physician, Brigham and Women's Hospital. 49 pages. (2009)

"Iodine is an essential trace element and an integral component of thyroid hormones. Thyroid hormones are required for normal growth and development of tissues and maturation of our bodies. Iodine deficiency is the most common preventable cause of mental retardation in the world; obtaining iodine through the food supply is therefore paramount."

Summary: Women are five to eight times more likely to have thyroid dysfunction than men, but most don't know they have it. Women often overlook their symptoms or mistake them for symptoms of other conditions. For example, women are at particularly high risk for developing thyroid disorders following childbirth. Symptoms such as fatigue and depression are common during this period, but these are also symptoms of thyroid disease. The ATA estimates that more than half of thyroid conditions remain undiagnosed.

Listing of symptoms of hyperthyroidism, and the differences between hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism.

Listing of symptoms hypothyroidism, and the differences between hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism.

What is the relationship between thyroid and weight? "It has been appreciated for a very long time that there is a complex relationship between thyroid disease, body weight and metabolism. Thyroid hormone regulates metabolism in both animals and humans. Metabolism is determined by measuring the amount of oxygen used by the body over a specific amount of time. If the measurement is made at rest, it is known as the basal metabolic rate (BMR). Indeed, measurement of the BMR was one of the earliest tests used to assess a patient's thyroid status. Patients whose thyroid glands were not working were found to have low BMRs, and those with overactive thyroid glands had high BMRs. Later studies linked these observations with measurements of thyroid hormone levels and showed that low thyroid hormone levels were associated with low BMRs and high thyroid hormone levels were associated with BMRs. Most physicians no longer use BMR due to the complexity in doing the test and because the BMR is subject to many other influences other than the thyroid state."

"Right now, a battle is waging in the endocrinology community regarding the so-called "reference range" for the Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH) test. The importance of this controversy cannot be underestimated. The majority of practitioners -- including endocrinologists, the physicians who specialize in thyroid disease -- rely solely on the TSH test as the primary test, the supposed "gold standard" in fact, for diagnosing and managing most thyroid conditions." "There is ongoing controversy about whether reliance on the TSH test -- to the exclusion of clinical symptoms and other tests such as Free T4, Free T3, and antibodies tests -- is medically sound. That is a controversy that is unlikely to be decided for years. The situation today, however, is that the majority of physicians do rely almost exclusively on the TSH test to detect thyroid disease, and monitor the effectiveness of treatment. Surprisingly, however, while the medical community does rely on the TSH test, there is complete disagreement within the community as to what constitutes the "normal range."
What is a Reference Range? "Reference range is a critical component, and the validity of the entire TSH test as diagnostic tool depends on it. A TSH reference range is obtained by taking a large group of people in the population, measuring their TSH levels, and calculating a mean value. Supposedly, these people should be free of thyroid disease, so that the level represents the mean TSH of a typical thyroid disease-free person in the population. The reference range is what determines whether or not thyroid disease is even diagnosed at all, much less treated, and when it is diagnosed, how it is treated."
"Currently, at most laboratories in the U.S., the reference range for TSH tests is approximately 0.5 to 5.0. Depending on the lab, you may seem some variations, i.e., 0.4 to 5.5, or 0.6 to 5.7, etc., but generally, 0.5 to 5.0 is considered typical of many labs.
Typically, doctors interpret levels below 0.5 as indicative of hyperthyroidism (an overactive thyroid), and levels above 5.0 as indicative of hypothyroidism (an underactive thyroid.)"

Four years ago, when Oprah managed to get down to a trim and fit 160 pounds, she thought she'd hit on a foolproof formula for permanent weight loss. Then life—in the form of a thyroid problem and a killer schedule—intervened. Last year she was back up to the 200-pound mark and knew something had to change.

"Iodine is an element that is needed for the production of thyroid hormone. The body does not make iodine, so it is an essential part of your diet. Iodine is found in various foods (see Table 1 below). If you do not have enough iodine in your body, you cannot make enough thyroid hormone. Thus, iodine deficiency can lead to enlargement of the thyroid (goiter – see Goiter brochure), hypothyroidism (see Hypothyroidism brochure) and to mental retardation in infants and children whose mothers were iodine deficient during pregnancy."

"Iodine is an element that is needed for the production of thyroid hormone. The body does not make iodine, so it is an essential part of your diet. Iodine is found in various foods (see Table 1 below). If you do not have enough iodine in your body, you cannot make enough thyroid hormone. Thus, iodine deficiency can lead to enlargement of the thyroid, hypothyroidism (see Hypothyroidism brochure) and to mental retardation in infants and children whose mothers were iodine deficient during pregnancy."

12. KI HOOPER Hooper and McDonald, "The PBDEs: An Emerging Environmental Challenge and Another Reason for Breast-Milk Monitoring Programs," ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH PERSPECTIVES Vol. 108, No. 5 (May 2000), pgs. 387-392.)

Source: Servicio de Endocrinología y Nutrición, Hospital Regional Universitario Carlos Haya, Málaga, Spain.

Different studies, mostly cross-sectional, have found an association between low levels of thyroid hormones, even within the normal range, and a greater body mass index. The aim of this study was to determine the association between thyroid function and the risk for obesity.

In this population-based prospective study, measurements were made of anthropometric parameters, thyroid hormone function and urinary iodine in a cohort of the Pizarra Study (n = 937), and repeated 6 years later (n = 784). At the second point, measurements were also made of leptin and adiponectin.

Among the persons who were not obese at the start of the study, the odds ratio (OR) of becoming obese for those in the fourth quartile (Q(4)) for free triiodothyronine (FT3) (versus those in Q(1)) was 2·94 (1·46-5·90) (P = 0·005). The OR of becoming obese in persons in Q(4) of FT4 (versus those in Q(1)) was 3·06 (1·23-7·43) (P = 0·01). Those persons in Q(4) of weight gain had a higher FT3 at the 6-year follow-up than those whose weight gain was in Q(1) (P < 0·001). Leptin correlated with thyrotropin (β = 0·58, P = 0·001) and the FT4 (β = -1·12, P = 0·005). Adiponectin correlated with FT3 (r = -0·24, P < 0·001). The urinary iodine correlated negatively with both the BMI (β = -0·08, P = 0·01) and the increase in weight (β = -0·08, P = 0·04).

The changes in the thyroid hormones could be the consequence, rather than the cause, of the increase in weight. The same pathophysiological mechanisms that induce obesity might also be modifying the thyroid hormone pattern. © 2011 The Authors. European Journal of Clinical Investigation © 2011 Stichting European Society for Clinical Investigation Journal Foundation.

Summary: "One of the main roles for the mineral iodine is to help manufacture thyroid hormones. And once upon a time in America - especially in the Great Lakes region - there were many cases of goiter, an enlarged thyroid gland caused by iodine deficiency. The iodine/goiter story had a happy ending, however, when manufacturers began adding iodine to salt ("iodized salt"). After that, goiters in the U.S. mostly disappeared. But the iodine story turns out to have an epilogue. A new epidemic of iodine deficiency has occurred. And it's bringing a lot more than goiters with it."

Dietary Patterns and Longevity
Expanding the Blue Zones, Lawrence J. Appel, MD, MPH


How does pregnancy normally affect thyroid function?
"Two pregnancy-related hormones-human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) and estrogen-cause increased thyroid hormone levels in the blood. Made by the placenta, hCG is similar to TSH and mildly stimulates the thyroid to produce more thyroid hormone. Increased estrogen produces higher levels of thyroid-binding globulin, a protein that transports thyroid hormone in the blood. These normal hormonal changes can sometimes make thyroid function tests during pregnancy difficult to interpret."

"Thyroid hormone is critical to normal development of the baby's brain and nervous system. During the first trimester, the fetus depends on the mother's supply of thyroid hormone, which it gets through the placenta. At 10 to 12 weeks, the baby's thyroid begins to function on its own. The baby gets its supply of iodine, which the thyroid gland uses to make thyroid hormone, through the mother's diet. Women need more iodine when they are pregnant-about 250 micrograms (µg) a day. In the United States, about 7 percent of pregnant women may not get enough iodine in their diet or through prenatal vitamins.1 Choosing iodized salt-salt supplemented with iodine-over plain salt is one way to ensure adequate intake. The thyroid gland enlarges slightly in healthy women during pregnancy, but not enough to be detected by a physical exam. A noticeably enlarged gland can be a sign of thyroid disease and should be evaluated. Higher levels of thyroid hormone in the blood, increased thyroid size, and other symptoms common to both pregnancy and thyroid disorders-such as fatigue-can make thyroid problems hard to diagnose in pregnancy."

17. Treatment of goitrous hypothyroidism with iodized oil supplementation in an area of iodine deficiency."
Exp Clin Endocrinol Diabetes. 1996;104(5):387-91. Azizi F, Kimiagar M, Ghazi A, Nafarabadi M, Behjati J, Esfahanian F.
Source: Endocrine Research Center, Shaheed Beheshti, University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, I.R. Iran.
Synopsis: "It is concluded that iodized oil injection is an effective and convenient treatment for goitrous hypothyroid youngsters in iodine deficient areas."