If you're one of the millions of American women suffering from PMS, irregular periods, difficulty getting pregnant, low sex drive, postpartum depression, menopausal symptoms, or many other hormonal problems, what you may not realize is that thyroid disease could be the culprit. The Thyroid Hormone Breakthrough is a holistic guide to identifying and overcoming the connection between hormonal problems and the thyroid, which goes undiagnosed in more than 30 million women in the U.S. alone. It will help you identify and diagnose thyroid problems and offer strategies to cope with the effects that thyroid conditions can have on everything from puberty to menopause, including ways to avoid the pitfalls of decreased sex drive.
With information on diet and exercise, conventional and alternative therapies, and lifestyle changes that will benefit overall health, plus a risk and symptom checklist and a detailed resource section, The Thyroid Hormone Breakthrough is the most comprehensive thyroid hormone book on the market.
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November 07, 2006
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Excerpt from The Thyroid Hormone Breakthrough by Mary J. Shomon
About the Thyroid and Thyroid Disease
The reasonable man adapts himself to the world;
the unreasonable one persists in trying to
adapt the world to himself.
Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.
--George Bernard Shaw
The normal thyroid is a small gland weighing about an ounce that sits behind the Adam's apple in the lower part of the neck, in front of the windpipe.
It derives its name from the Greek word thyreoeides, meaning "shield-shaped." In fact, it looks like a bowtie or butterfly, with the two "wings," or lobes, of the gland connected in the middle by the isthmus.
The thyroid, like other glands, is a discrete soft body made up of a large number of vessels that produce, store, and release--or secrete--some substance. Some glands secrete their products outside the body, some inside. Those that secrete hormones and metabolic substances on the inside of the body are known as endocrine glands. The endocrine glands include the thyroid, the parathyroids, the adrenal gland, the pancreas, the pituitary gland, the pineal gland, the gonads (ovaries and testes), and the thymus.
Doctors who specialize in treating patients with endocrine problems--disorders of the endocrine glands--are called endocrinologists.
Hormones are internal secretions carried in the blood to various organs. The thyroid's main purpose is to produce, store, and release two key hormones: triiodothyronine, also called T3; and thyroxine, or T4. The numbers 3 and 4 refer to the number of iodine molecules attached to each hormone.