Thyroid disorders are very common, it is estimated 1 in 20 people in the UK experience thyroid problems. This figure is likely to be higher in reality as many people are unaware they have thyroid issues.
Thyroid disorders fall into 2 categories: Hyperthyroidism and Hypothyroidism. In this article we will be exploring the natural treatments with Chinese Medicine for thyroid disorder.
Hyperthyroidism = Overactive thyroid gland that produces too much thyroid hormones
Hypothyroidism = Underactive thyroid gland does not produce enough hormones
Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) considers both hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism as Yin and Yang imbalances
Thyroid Disorder in Chinese Medicine is related organs and meridian of Liver, Stomach, Spleen and Kidney.
Causes & Symptoms of thyroid disorder
In western medicine, most cases of under active thyroid are caused either by your immune system attacking the thyroid gland and damaging it, or by damage to the thyroid caused by surgery or other treatments. Overactive thyroid is believed to be caused by Graves’ disease, Thyroid nodules.
Causes of thyroid disorder: Chinese Medicine perspective
Hyperthyroidism ( Overactive thyroid )
Cause: Internal excessive heat, or heat interrupting digestion
Symptoms: Tiredness, feeling cold, weight gain, poor concentration, high blood pressure, rapid heartbeat, moist skin, increased sweating, tremor, nervousness, increased appetite with weight loss, frequent bowel movements.
Hypothyroidism ( Underactive thyroid )
Cause: Yang deficiency, or Yang deficiency accompanied with excessive coldness
Symptoms:Tiredness, feeling cold, weight gain, poor concentration, hoarse voice, slowed speech, puffy face, drooping eyelids, constipation, weight gain, dry hair and skin, and depression.
Chinese Medicine View of Thyroid
According to TCM philosophy the majority of illnesses arise from imbalances in the underlying energies that regulate our body mind and spirit. When in balance our life force – our Qi – flows freely and strongly through our body along pathways known as Meridians. If the flow of this Qi is weak or the meridians become blocked, certain organs will not get the nourishment they need to function appropriately. This results in illness.
Yin and Yang are two energies that work together in opposition to maintain balance, like a scale. If either Yin or Yang becomes dominant, the other one becomes weaker, and there will be problems of deficiency and or excess. This is what happens when there is a thyroid imbalance. Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal treatments treat the root cause of the disorder – the imbalance between Yin and Yang – and in doing so help the thyroid gland to effectively regulate the production of hormones.
Natural Thyroid Treatment
Acupuncture for Thyroid
Acupuncture aims to re-balance the body by stimulating the flow of Qi balancing the levels of Yin and Yang and enabling the free movement of Blood – and therefore hormones – around the body. Acupuncture has been shown to regulate hormones and to help address thyroid conditions.
An acupuncturist will primarily needle points on the lower arms, lower legs, back, and abdomen. As the Meridian system flows throughout your body – including along your throat which is where your thyroid gland is located – acupuncture treatment in these areas will help to unblock stuck energy and to stimulate your thyroid gland to function appropriately.
Chinese Herbs for Thyroid
Chinese herbal medicine has a long track record of helping people to restore the correct functioning of their thyroid glands. Traditional Chinese medicine uses natural and safe herbs to help to rebalance the body’s natural energy. There are a number of herbs that are very effective at helping people with thyroid disorders:
Herbs for Overactive Thyroid
Liver detoxing Remedy
GinSen’s Liver detoxing Remedy supplements work on getting to the root cause of Liver imbalance. Liver detox Remedy are expertly formulated supplements that can be incorporated in your daily routine. They help with detoxing heat, smooth Liver Qi, cooling internal heat and hormonise internal body system, helping vital Qi movement .
Dandelion (Pu Gong Ying)
Natural Dandelion or Pu Gong Ying by GinSen is a high grade botanical extract which offers natural antibacterial and antiviral properties along with promoting natural detox. It works by eliminating toxic heat from the body.
Herbs for Underactive Thyroid
Gui Zi Di Huang Tang
Gui Zi Di Huang Tang are herbal blend supplements designed to balance deficiencies in the Kidney. These are multi functional supplements to balance hormones, they can also be used for symptoms arising from the Kidney deficiencies.
Astragalus (Huang Qi)
Astragalus herb (Huang Qi) has been used for centuries in traditional Chinese medicine. This powerful herb can be added to your daily routine to boost Qi and Yang , promote warmth Yang energy flow, balance Spleen and Kidney Yang energy
Diet and Lifestyle advice to support thyroid function
- Avoid eating and drinking frozen or very cold temperature foods straight from the fridge as this can damage your Spleen.
- Refrain from eating salad and raw food in winter.
- Try including more warming foods into your diet such as pepper, onion, ginger tea and lamb
- Eat healthy , keeping balance food between protein and vegetable
- Get plenty of sunshine, at least 30 minutes a day.
- Rest- are you getting enough sleep? Your thyroid gland benefits from rest and relaxation. Make sure that your room is dark and switch off night lights.
- It is great to include some exercise into your daily routine – but not too much. We don’t want to exhaust your body even more. If your body feels very tired the next day, this is a sign you did too much exercise the previous day. Try to focus on building up your strength.
- It is important to keep moving as this will help to move your Qi around your body and it also helps to prevent stagnation. Tai Chi and yoga can also help to lower our stress levels which can contribute to a healthier thyroid function.
Looking Deeper into Chinese Medicine
Hyperthyroidism condition is interpreted in TCM as the result of Excess Yang and Liver Heat.
An excess of Yang energy can no longer be regulated by Yin. If this is not treated the Yang energy starts to get out of control, eventually creating a deficiency of Yin. As a result of this imbalance the body’s overall Qi energy becomes weakened.
This excess Yang energy overstokes the energy of the Liver which goes into overdrive -creating blockages along the meridian system. TCM practitioners view blockages as being related to stagnation of Qi, or blood, or phlegm. In this case, phlegm stagnation is impeding the flow to and from the thyroid gland.
- Liver heat causes symptoms like: redness of the skin, itchiness, irritability, hunger and high metabolism, and a quickened pulse.
- Weakness of Qi and Yin causes: trouble breathing, trouble sleeping, sweating, and dryness of the eyes and mouth.
- Phlegm stagnation is considered the reason for the swelling of the thyroid gland itself.
This is interpreted In TCM as the result of Yang deficiency, and or excessive body fluid or water retention , slow down body metabolism. Relative organs and meridian are Stomach, Spleen and Kidney. Mainly symptoms are : fatigue, hand and feet coldness, low back pain, body weight gain
The Yang energy present body organs function and activity, keeping body organs and meridian warm and easily Vital Qi flow, rotation in supporting body maintaining needs, cleaning body unwanted toxicity, protecting body environment healthy. When Yang deficiency, the body organs and meridian loss power of Yang energy, the function and activity will slow down, in the meanwhile , It also accumulated toxicity of body fluid and water retention, gas and coldness, damage body internal healthy, blocked energy flow.
TCM theory interprets hypothyroidism as the result of the following: long term or chronic highly stress, improper diet, poor constitution and overwork in physical or mental. This condition is the result of damage to the Stomach, Spleen and Kidney Yang deficiency, toxicity blocked energy flow, which related to thyroid gland.
This problem may be exacerbated by a poor constitution and overworking – both of which can overstrain and weaken further the Spleen, Stomach and Kidneys and explains the water retention which is characteristic of this condition.
Common Clinic patterns :
Stomach and Spleen Yang deficiency: Sugar craving, hungary easily, bloating and gas, fatigue, stomach easily fullness, abdominal pain or discomfort, unexplained tiredness.
Spleen and Kidney Yang deficiency: Sugar craving, fatigue, body heaviness, water retention, bloating and gas, weight gain, low back pain, joint stiffness, low back pain, low part of body sensitive of coldness ( cold feet).
For more information about how Chinese Medicine can help you book your free consultation or treatment today.
* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. We can’t guarantee the treatment result, as the symptoms of conditions are unpredictable and vary greatly from person to person. The treatment length and recovery time also varies for individual. Please visit our clinics website: GinSen where a specialists will discuss your care and provide a consultation, and the treatment will be designed to meet your individual needs.