11Jan/18

Thick Neck or Goiter?

I am constantly watching videos and searching the internet to learn new things.  I am always struck by the number of people I notice who have a goiter.  For those of you that don’t know what a goiter is, it is a swollen thyroid.  The gland swells in an effort to capture iodine to make thyroid hormones.  We are so iodine deficient not only in the United States but all around the world that its becoming epidemic.  When I see it, I sigh and wish that I could offer some help because if they don’t have issues now – they are coming.

So what’s the big deal about having a goiter?  To most medical doctors – nothing.  My own gynecologist who found my goiter mentioned it to me casually but then never suggested that I should do something about it.  Had I addressed the issue I doubt I would have gotten thyroid cancer nor would my children have lifelong thyroid issues.  But we are here now and I try to help as many as will listen.

So what does a goiter look like?  Here are some examples.

This is relatively large but there are some more extreme in 3rd world countries.

They can look like this – a thickened neckline.

Milder left lobe only goiter.

Milder forms of goiter I caught on a video I watched.  This is the time to catch it before damage to the gland occurs.

 

 

 

 

 

What are the reasons why we develop a goiter?

Iodine deficiency 
I’ve already hinted above that iodine is a reason.  The thyroid needs it to create hormones.  The T4 hormone contains iodine.  The number 4 in that hormone name represents 4 iodine molecules.

Selenium deficiency
Selenium is needed in the thyroid hormone creation process to create thyroid peroxidase (TPO).  When this gets out of balance we can see an autoimmune condition occur called Hashimotos.

Hashimotos
Hashimotos is an autoimmune condition where the body creates antibodies called TPO Ab and Tg Ab to attack the gland and kill it off. The body is confused and views it as an invader that needs to be removed.  The Iodine protocol has been shown to assist in the reduction and even elimination of this condition.

Nodules & Tumors 
This can be cancerous or benign which if left untreated can turn into a cancerous condition such as papillary thyroid cancer.  It did in my case and I wouldn’t wish my experience on anyone.

Pregnancy
During pregnancy the baby will take what it needs to grow and develop.  Iodine is critical for the development of the neurological system as well as the thyroid gland.  The mother’s thyroid gland produces hormone for the baby for the first 2 trimesters.  When the mother is already low and the baby demands more the body sends out the signal of a goiter to show that a crisis is coming.

The Iodine protocol is important for not only goiter issues but the entire body.  If the thyroid shows signs of deficiency then the rest of the body is as well.  Women who are low in iodine are at a higher risk of polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) and breast cancer.  Men can also get breast cancer as well as prostate cancer.  Fibromyalgia has been helped with iodine supplement too since the muscles house a high volume of iodine.

I believe iodine is one of the most critical nutrients needed to maintain optimum body health.  Don’t wait until a problem appears.  Your body is sending you warnings.  Listen!

 

28Dec/17

Dogs Need Iodine?

I am a ‘dog mom’.  I have 2 dogs that are raw fed and holistically cared for.  I have a PooChin (poodle / Japanese chin mix) and a ShiChi (Shih Tuz / Chihuahua mix).  They are both 14 lbs.  Their lifestyle has kept them both healthy and neither have required frequent visits to the vet.  We visit every 3 years for the rabies vaccine.  About 2 years ago my PooChin – Snickerdoodles (aka Snickers) started to get a cyst on his tail.  It started out small and slowly grew larger and had a weird white ball under the skin with fluid around it.  I asked the Vet about it on one of his visits and she decided to biopsy it to see what it was.  She told me that it was nothing and that some dogs just seemed more prone to them.  After the biopsy it seemed to just melt away and he was free of lumps for a few months.

Then in September he went in for his rabies vaccination (every 3 years by law here) and a month or less later he had a large cyst forming again on his side over his rib cage.  Then he started to get more bumps.  He had 2 more smaller bumps in the back hindquarter of his leg.  He’s had lumps form at the site of the injection which I treated with topical solutions but this one was nowhere near the injection site.  Then I remembered a lecture that Dr Flechas gave where he discussed cysts being related to iodine deficiency.  I decided to add 1 drop of 5% solution Lugol’s iodine to my dogs water bowl.  My two dogs share a ceramic bowl that is about 2 cups.  So I cannot determine just how much he was receiving.  Each morning I would give them fresh water and add another drop of Lugol’s to the bowl.

Two weeks after starting to supplement, the lump on his side began to shrink.  After 3 weeks the cyst was completely gone.  Of the two on the hindquarter – one remains.  The other is much smaller.  I will continue to supplement with iodine and monitor his progress.

I began to think about my other dog, Gizmo, and if he seemed to have any benefits.  Gizmo is prone to skin issues.  He gets crusty patches on his underbelly.  He would lick his paws constantly.  We tried adding foods, removing foods and even getting medicated shampoos.  His skin has been much better and I cannot find any scaly patches on his belly.

 

I don’t know why I am so surprised by the progress my dogs have made.  I know personally the benefits that iodine can bring to healing the body.  After all it is what I used to heal from papillary thyroid cancer.  Because it is so much a part of my regular day I forget about the amazing power this nutrient has.

To your health….naturally!

14Dec/17

Zinc is Not Just for Immunity

 

If you are in a store that sells nutritional supplements, odds are you will find zinc lozenges.  These are used when you are fighting a cold to help boost the immune system but zinc is so much more.  There are many critical body functions that depend on adequate levels.

Immunity – Zinc increases T Cell growth and enhances differentiation into white blood cells.  It is important in creating proper gene transcription.  It has been shown to be needed in the process of apoptosis (programmed cell death) for viruses, bacteria and even cancer cells.

Thyroid – Zinc is critical for the conversion of Free T4 to Free T3 (active metabolic hormone).  When there are inadequate amounts of zinc in the body, it will be more apt to convert FT4 into RT3 (Reverse T3) which actually “negates” FT3.   This creates lower levels of energy and oxygen being delivered to the cells of the body.  These two hormones compete for the same receptor.  Despite this negative issue, RT3 has a beneficial function.  It is a defense mechanism to protect the body in the event of an over production of FT3.  But if you are already struggling to have enough FT3 you would not want this hormone to be increased unnecessarily.

Allergies – When zinc levels are low in the body it will release an increased amount of histamine.  High histamine will result in sneezing, runny eyes and itching.  Histamine is part of all allergic reactions.

Hair Loss – One of the first things that is looked at by physicians is thyroid levels.  If low, the patient will be given thyroid hormones.  However, this often does not correct the problem.  Low levels of zinc, as stated above, are needed for hormone conversion and are also important in proper adrenal function where sex hormones are released.  Stress can deplete zinc levels in the body.

Leaky Gut / Skin – Zinc is critical in wound healing by supporting the formation of collagen.  Collagen is also important in restoring the lining of the gut wall when leaky gut is an issue.  Leaky gut is a condition where the cell wall becomes permeable in the gut wall allowing proteins to leak directly into the blood stream.   Collagen is also required for skin integrity.  Proper levels will restore “plumpness” thus lessening the appearance of lines and wrinkles.   Since we know that stress lessens zinc, perhaps this is the reason why we see aging in the face when an individual experiences a stressful life.

Fertility – Fertilization of the female egg requires rapid movement of the sperm to the egg along with the ability to permeate the cell wall.  Zinc plays a role in overall quality and quantity of the sperm count.

Diabetes / Blood Sugar – Zinc is highly concentrated in the islet cells of the pancreas where insulin is produced.   It has the potential of promoting healthy insulin production which helps to maintain natural blood sugar control.   Zinc can bind to insulin receptors and activates insulin signaling pathways.  This will result in more glucose uptake into the cells and a lowering of glucose in the blood.   A deficiency in zinc can result in poor ?-cell function and a higher incidence of insulin resistance.

As you can see, zinc is important for overall health.  It is seldom discussed as a needed nutrient, but could be instrumental in combating many common health maladies of the day.  Zinc can be found in grass fed beef, pastured chicken, cashews, garbanzo beans and pumpkin seeds (to name a few) but you may also require supplementing  as well.

Dr Flechas on Zinc & Prostate Cancer

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