The thyroid is a tiny gland in your neck that can cause issues much bigger than its size. When thyroid dysfunctions and turns into an underactive or sluggish thyroid, that can cause further illnesses. And this particular issue is a lot more common in women than in men.
An imbalanced thyroid can cause many complications, and the symptoms can be seen throughout the body, making diagnosis slightly difficult. So let’s check out some common symptoms of a sluggish thyroid that will help you recognize the issue on time.
10 Symptoms Of A Sluggish Thyroid
1. Depression And Other Mood Disorders
An underactive thyroid can cause a multitude of mood swings. You might be experiencing happiness, sadness, anxiety, anger, depression, all in a matter of minutes. The lack of thyroid hormone affects serotonin levels in your brain, which can cause depression and other mood disorders.
A sluggish thyroid can make you feel fuzzy and confused all day, like you’re going through a brain fog. In such cases, you tend to forget the most basic stuff you need to do, you cannot do anything that takes concentration, and get lost in thought most of the time.
3. High Cholesterol
The LDL cholesterol levels go out of your control. Even with the right diet, exercise, and medical treatment, the levels will skyrocket. With misdiagnosis or lack of treatment, this can lead to cardiac disorders.
4. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
You might feel a tingling and numb sensation in your hand. This is due to a pressure on the median nerve of your wrist. Pregnancy, obesity, and other illnesses can also cause this. So carpal tunnel syndrome can indicate thyroid dysfunction when combined with other symptoms.
5. Weight Gain Or Inability To Lose Weight
No matter how much you diet or exercise, you will gain weight. And you’ll find it hard to lose those extra pounds. This is a very common symptom of a sluggish thyroid, which alters your hormonal balance and makes you lazy.
6. Digestive Issues
You’ll feel constipated and find your body struggling to digest your normal diet. The lowered thyroid hormone affects your digestive system as well, making it impossible to eat anything heavy.
Do you feel tired all the time and lack the energy to do any of your daily activities despite getting enough sleep? This is one of the most prominent signs of a sluggish thyroid. Reduced levels of the thyroid hormone due to a sluggish thyroid can cause fatigue throughout the day.
8. Disrupted Menstrual Cycle
Your menstrual cycle goes for a toss. You might get your periods too early or too late, a lot more frequently, and for a longer duration. You might also experience severe cramps and flow, all thanks to the underactive thyroid.
9. Dry And Itchy Skin
A sluggish thyroid does not produce sufficient thyroid hormone. Consequently, your body stops sweating due to dehydration and your skin becomes flaky, dry, and itchy.
10. Hair Fall And Dry Hair
Hair fall is one of the first signs of any kind of hormonal imbalance. Having to manage with just reducing levels of thyroid hormone, your hair becomes dry and falls off way too easily.
Along with these, you might feel extremely sensitive to cold and fall sick easily, have a comparatively slower heart rate, and your thyroid might start swelling. These symptoms are good indications of your need to visit a doctor as soon as possible.
7 Natural Remedies For A Sluggish Thyroid
While severe cases require medical care, most thyroid issues can be dealt with using natural remedies and lifestyle changes. Apart from taking medication, here’s what you can do:
1. Reduce Stress
This one is tough but is a trick you need to learn. Excess stress is the cause of most hormonal issues and this includes thyroid problems as well. Take up exercises that help calm you down, meditate, and practice breathing exercises.
2. Avoid Gluten
Gluten is a common cause of allergies, which can cause a disorder called “leaky gut” and inflammation in the thyroid. It can also cause autoimmune attacks on the thyroid, thus disrupting its function.
3. Reduce Carbs And Eat Healthy Fats
Excess carbs and increase estrogen levels in women, which plays around with the thyroid function. Instead of this, use products with healthy fats, such as nuts; avocados; coconut milk and oil; olive oil; and flax, chia, and hemp seeds, which contain selenium. But make sure that you follow a moderate diet with these as well as excess selenium won’t do you good.
4. Say No To Processed Foods
In order to reduce carbs, you’ll inevitably have to avoid processed foods completely. Excess carbs in flour and added sugar can imbalance the thyroid function. As much as possible, cook healthy food for yourself, eat lots of fruits and veggies, and go organic. Since nutrient deficiencies also play a role in causing a sluggish thyroid, follow a balanced diet full of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients.
5. Balance Your Iodine Levels
Make sure that your body is not low on iodine; you can go for iodine supplements based on your doctor’s recommendation. Also, preferably, use sea salt instead of the regular table salt as the former contains more minerals that could support thyroid function. You can also go for seaweed such as kelp, arame, and wakame, all of which are rich in iodine.
6. Use Probiotics
Healthy gut bacteria are a must for healthy thyroid functioning. So consume probiotics every day. Along with this, you can also eat sauerkraut, yogurt, kombucha, or kefir. All of these will keep your bacteria healthy.
7. Live An Active Life
Get enough of vitamin D out in the sun, exercise regularly, eat a lot of healthy food, avoid junk, and keep yourself from making any stressful lifestyle choices. A healthy life gives you a good immune system that keeps you away from just about all diseases.