Dr. Taggart has been practicing in Kirkland for the last 20 years using metabolic testing and advanced neurological therapies to help his patients restore their health. He decided he would dedicate himself to the field of chiropractic and natural medicine after the amazing changes he noticed with his own health as a result of care as a young man.
Dr. Taggart believes very strongly in the natural ability of the body to heal itself. He uses standard diagnostic methods in conjunction with Applied Kinesiology (muscle testing) to determine causes. He utilizes adjustments, specific rehabilitative exercises, neurological brain based therapies, nutritional counseling and mind-body techniques to restore health and function.
CureJoy talked to Dr. Taggart on the critical role of the thyroid gland in maintaining the right health balance and why diagnosing and treating it early is essential to lead a healthy life.
Q: How important is the role of the Thyroid gland in maintaining the right hormonal balance?
Optimal thyroid function is critical for your overall health because every cell in your body needs thyroid hormones to function. The thyroid gland along with the rest of your hormonal system all work together to balance your body chemistry.
Q: What are the main triggers that affect Thyroid function? Are unhealthy lifestyle habits aggravating these triggers?
A Poor diet that contains processed foods, high sugar content, lacks nutrient dense fruits and vegetables puts your thyroid health at risk and your overall health as well because your thyroid and all the systems of the body need vitamins and minerals to function properly. The thyroid specifically needs adequate protein, selenium, iodine and B vitamin to make thyroid hormones.
Q: Are there indicators from the body one should look out for to diagnose thyroid imbalances early?
Since the thyroid is so important for health, when it’s not working properly there are a lot of symptoms that a person can experience. The most common are fatigue, thinning hair, feeling cold when other people aren’t, constipation, depression, chronic joint pain and an inability to lose weight even on a low calorie diet are classic low thyroid symptoms.
Q: What are the types of Thyroid imbalances and how does it impact your health and lifestyle?
Thyroid imbalance and be divided into two main categories, hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism. Hypothyroidism is much more common. Hypothyroidism can further be separated into auto-immune thyroid and non–auto-immune. Research shows that 80-90 percent of all hypothyroidism is caused by an auto-immune disorder called Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.
In this disorder you immune system has become dysregulated to the point that it is attacking your thyroid gland and possibly other tissues as well. The only approach that will improve this condition is to address the immune system. Thyroid replacement therapy does not address the immune system and will not be an effective single approach to this condition. (In a future article titled. “Thyroid disease, what do you do when the medications don’t work?”) I will talk a lot more about Hashimoto’s.
The non-auto-immune thyroid condition is best handled by looking at the entire endocrine system and preforming the appropriate tests to determine what mechanisms are creating poor thyroid function.
Q: What should a person do if they suspect or already have a thyroid problem?
The most important thing to do is to find the proper natural medicine doctor who is an expert in thyroid dysfunction and make sure you run all the necessary tests to look at your entire metabolic function. Medical doctors can only offer you thyroid medications this approach may be appropriate in some cases but in most cases it fails to find the cause of why your thyroid metabolism isn’t working properly.
It is also important to know that thyroid problems are one of the most underdiagnosed and mismanaged endocrine disorders. This occurs because not enough testing is done, outdated thyroid lab ranges are used and a general fact that most doctors have not kept up on the most current research on thyroid dysfunction.
Q: What tests should be run to get a true picture of your thyroid health?
The minimum tests that should be run are:
- TSH, Free T3, T3 uptake, Thyroid antibody tests
- (TPO and TPG). In addition a Comprehensive Metabolic Profile
- Hepatic panel including Cholesterol and Triglycerides
- Complete WBC count with differential
- Iron and ferritin levels
- Vit D level
- Homocystein level
- Uric acid
Q: What if my current doctor is not cooperative in my investigation of my thyroid problems or symptoms?
If your doctor is not willing to be an advocate for you, despite the non-resolution of your symptoms then you need to find a more qualified doctor who is an expert in thyroid dysfunction and is using the latest researched based approaches. This gives you the best opportunity to reverse your symptoms and improve your thyroid health.
Q: In general what can a person do to improve their thyroid health?
Every health conditions will improve to a point with a better diet. Eat organic meats and dairy, more fruits and vegetables, increased good fats from fish and nuts. Eliminate processed food, decrease grain consumption. Consider going Gluten free, research shows a connection between gluten sensitivity and Hashimoto’s.