Investigate genetic and environmental influences as viewed through your eyes.

Your Eyes Truly are the Windows to Gaining Knowledge & Preventative Care of Your Health

To Use On Select Assessments/Packages

Questions or Comments Welcome


Subscribe to our newsletter
 Product Specials

The Thyroid Gland  by Spence Masson

Are you among the 1/3 percent of the women experiencing these symptoms?

You might have a problem with your Thyroid Gland: VIEW SYMPTOMS NOW

Thyroid problems are serious and widespread - it's estimated 1 to 1.5 billion people are at risk for thyroid problems in North America.

The thyroid gland produces 2 main hormones, T4 & T3, in a 4:1 ratio (4 times as much T4). T4 is the "storage" form. It circulates in the blood and is converted into T3 (the active form) as needed. The enzyme that catalyzes the T4 to T3 conversion depends on selenium. So selenium deficiency can lead to thyroid problems.

The glands that work with the thyroid in the release of T4 and T3 are the hypothalamus and the pituitary gland, and the liver is where T4 is converted to T3. What we see in most thyroid disorders is that the thyroid gland itself is not affected, there's something else going on with one of the other glands or enzymes involved in T4 / T3 process.

Iodine is essential because it's a major component of thyroid hormone. Iodine is chemically related to fluorine, chlorine and bromine. All of these atoms chemically react with iodine and disrupt it, causing loss of iodine. This is one of the reasons chlorinated water is a big problem. Some municipalities are now using bromine but that's no better, because bromine is an even worse iodine disruptor than chlorine.

There are several drugs that depress iodine, mainly aspirin and other blood thinners, also corticosteroid drugs (used with a lot of arthritis patients for pain relief). Note that cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, cabbage) are mild iodine disruptors. But it doesn't mean you should avoid these. More on this later.

Radioactivity causes destruction of the thyroid gland. Radioactive iodine is a very big problem. Isotope iodine-131 is released by various atomic plants around the USA, and also shows up in milk and dairy products. Some experts feel that regular exposure to iodine like this is the reason for the prevalence of thyroid problems today.

Natural healers consider iodine to come in two forms, chemical and organic. The chemical form is found in table salt and commercial bread (iodine is used as a dough-conditioning agent). Iodine is also used as a sterilizer in dairy equipment, compounding the problem of iodine showing up in dairy products. Chemical iodine overstimulates the thyroid. This may be why some people get hyper after drinking milk or eating lots of cheese.

Organic iodine is the preferential form. You should saturate your body with it, especially if you live in an area where iodine pollution is prevalent. The best source of organic iodine is seaweeds (kelp, spirulina, etc.). Black Walnut is the only land plant with a significant amount of iodine.

Good NSP products to use as a source of iodine are:
KC-X, TS-II, Kelp, Spirulina, and Black Walnut
Kelp is particularly good, since it contains molecules used to make the T4 hormone. Therefore kelp is very valuable to build up the thyroid. Note that goiter is due to low iodine, therefore use Kelp, KC-X or TS-II for these cases.

Other nutrients essential to proper thyroid functioning:
Zinc, copper, manganese, vitamin B6, L-tyrosine (an amino acid)

The major function of the thyroid gland is to emulsify and burn fats to create energy. Thus it helps to keep the body warm. Therefore low body temperature, or feeling cold, or cold hands, feet or limbs are all indicators of low thyroid function. Another symptom is frequent fatigue or variable energy levels throughout the day. A third symptom or indicator is dry skin and skin problems. Fats and oils are essential for healthy skin, and dry skin can be an indicator that the body is not metabolizing fats and oils (a function of the thyroid) properly. Another indicator of low thyroid functioning is the inability to lose weight.

To help feed the thyroid, herbs should be the first choice, instead of the chemical types of iodine as mentioned earlier.

If the metabolic function is not impaired, the next thing to ask is whether or not the pituitary gland is working properly. Herbs to consider would be Spirulina, Bee Pollen, and Chinese Mineral-Chi Tonic. Also, Three is an excellent thyroid formula. That's because it has Alfalfa (helps the pituitary gland), Kelp (for the thyroid itself) and Dandelion (for the liver).

This is indicated by rapid T4 to T3 conversion. Patients have nervous energy, rapid heart beat, can have rapid weight loss, appear very skinny, and the eyes begin to bulge. Symptoms include, nervousness, irritability, difficulty sleeping, bulging eyes, unblinking stare, unexplained weight loss, goiter, rapid heartbeat, increased sweating, heat intolerance, scant menstrual periods, frequent bowel movements, warm moist palms, fine tremor of fingers. Avoid taking iodine.  

The standard medical treatment is to kill the thyroid gland and then put people on thyroid medication for the rest of their lives. The natural healing approach would involve the following: Avoid taking iodine, both the chemical and organic types. That means avoiding kelp and seaweeds, commercial bread, and dairy products.

Add the following NSP herbs to help:
IF-C is very good to reduce inflammation and irritation of the thyroid. HS-C and Licorice root are recommended - they are adaptogens for the adrenals. In cases of hyperthyroidism, the adrenals are often weak or exhausted and always racing to catch up to the thyroid.

Super Oil or other essential fatty acid supplements. And also make sure to eat cruciferous vegetables; these were mentioned earlier and are very good for the immune system, and at the same time have naturally-occurring chemicals (in the raw state) that have a mild thyroid-inhibiting effect. Also beans (for example soybeans) are good to include in the diet because their isoflavones have a mild thyroid-inhibiting effect. Other herbs that inhibit the thyroid and that would be useful for hyperactive thyroid are Lemon balm, Bugle weed, Rosemary (to a lesser extent) and Mother wort (to calm the heart).

HASHIMOTO'S DISEASE (an autoimmune thyroid disorder)
With this disease, use herbs to balance out the thyroid: Siberian ginseng, Saw palmetto, Black cohosh, APS II and Gotu Kola. Both Black Cohosh and APS II have salicins, which is why they are chosen. (Note: NSP Canada does not carry APS II, but Triple Relief also has salicins from white willow bark)

One symptom of low thyroid function is the inability to lose weight. Try KC-X and Kelp . If your client still not losing weight, then the thyroid is probably ok and you need to look at the liver next. Chickweed is excellent as it helps to emulsify fats. Note also that a hysterectomy impairs the ability to burn fats because the reproductive tissues and hormones have some fat burning capability.
The T4 to T3 conversion is inhibited by high insulin levels. High insulin occurs with Type II diabetes. One way to help is to avoid eating too many simple carbos.

Self Thyroid Test


Plan to take the test first thing in the morning after you wake up, because it’s important to measure the temperature after you have had adequate rest.


1.       Before going to sleep, if you are not using a digital thermometer shake down a regular thermometer to below the 95- degree mark and place it by your bed.


2.       Immediately upon waking, place the thermometer in your armpit (if using a regular thermometer keep it there for a full 10 minutes)


3.    Hold your elbow close to your side to keep the thermometer in place.

        Read and record the temperature and date.


Repeat the test for at least three mornings preferably at the same time of day


A reading between 97.8 – 98.2 F   or 36.6 – 36.8C is normal.


 Readings below 97.8 may indicate hypothyroidism.


Vitamin D3 is essential for the manufacture of thyroid hormone and due to our low exposure to sunlight in Canada we tend to see higher rates of low thyroid.

Return to My Nutrients

Back to Article List

Back to Main Site