Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Iodine and Low Thyroid

This same person also said, "I already use Sea Kelp which has helped with the thyroid symptoms immensely."  I have had low thyroid partly because I can not absorb many types of iodine. My doctor told me that the iodine in iodized salt is a type that is very stable and stores well, but many people can not absorb it. I couldn't. There are several other iodine compounds. You can be test to see if you absorb that type of compound. One of the best sources of iodine is Sea Kelp. Many people can absorb it well and their goiter goes away.

Can you test "normal" and still be sick?

A person who has been ill for a long time with fatigue, muscle and joint pain, throbbing pains in neck, groin and armpits, weight gain, bloating, dry skin etc asked to have their level of thyroid and cortisone tested.  All was in the "normal" range.  I tested  low but "normal" for many years. My doctor explained that most tests don't give the whole picture. For instance, my thyroid hormone levels were low but within the normal range, still I exhibited all the symptoms of low thyroid. How could that be? He explained to me that all the test measures is what thyroid hormones are in our blood stream. The test does not measure if those hormones get into my cells as they should, or if they do what they are supposed to do in my body.  I could have a resistance to a hormone and need a higher level than expected to be "normal".  My doctor uses tests, but looks at all the symptoms. When the symptoms indicate a possibility, we test that hypothesis.  I might try a B12 shot, or a different medication, or diet. If it helps, then that probably is my problem even it the tests do not clearly show it. Keeping a health journal has been a big help in identify symptoms and helping determining what is the matter.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Avoiding Parkinson's and Dementia

A woman wrote in with a question I thought others might also have.

First she said that she had neurasthenia. Since I had never heard of that ailment I looked it up and found:

Friday, October 24, 2014

I just can't walk that far around the lake. What do I do?

Last Saturday my husband and I drove up to a mountain lake. Since I knew I couldn't walk very far, I had checked online about the trail. It said that the trail was a "great way for seniors and handicapped to enjoy the outdoors".  It also said that "the lake is circled by a boardwalk" and would require about 30 minutes to walk around the lake. It sounded like something I could do. I could walk some and ride in the wheelchair the rest of the way. We call it going for a "walk and roll".  It looked like all would be well, but we didn't know for sure. Later we found out we were wrong.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Low Adrenal Function and Menopause

If your adrenal glands are not up to the stress of Menopause, it will be more difficult. Normally the adrenal glands produce some estrogen which helps to cushion the severity of the menopausal symptoms. Also, the hormones normally produced by the adrenal glands help the body deal with stress and change. At this time hormones are sputtering and levels are dropping. They are certainly not staying level. This requires very constant and careful monitoring of your hydrocortisone and fludrocort. You will need to be aware of the symptoms of both high and low adrenal levels (see Hydrocortisone and Addison's Disease and Fludrocort and Addison's Disease). Menopause started for me in my early 40's and lasted until I was 57. It was a rough time, and I'm glad it is over. I feel so much better now! Here are some suggestions I have to make this time easier if you have low adrenal function:

Hydrocortisone and Addison's Disease

I am putting in the symptoms of too much and too little hydrocortisone when it is used to treat Addison's Disease. It is important to know which medicine is too low or high to be able to adjust it. Look at the whole group of symptoms. For instance "low energy" can be caused by many things, but if you have most of the symptoms of low Hydrocortisone, then you can be pretty confident that is the problem. Make notes in your health journal and talk to your doctor about adjusting your medications.

Symptoms of Too Little Hydrocortisone

Monday, October 20, 2014

Florinef and Addison's Disease

A woman wrote in saying that she having trouble with her Florinef medication. She complained of side effects -- gaining weight, feeling bloated, puffy in the face, hands shaking, chest beating hard, sweating, thirsty, low sodium levels, potassium high, craves salt. She says that Florinef is salt tablets and thinks is is causing her symptoms. She also states that she is starting menopause.

I think several things are happening here. First look at my post on Learning to Use My Medicine

Fludrocortisone (or Fludrocort or Floroinef- brand name) is NOT a salt pill. It is a synthetic adrenal hormone. It is used to replace one of the major adrenal hormones, aldosterone. Most people with Addison's Disease need to take Fludrocort (1 pill .1mg) daily. Aldosterone controls mineral balances in our bodies, mainly the salt and potassium balance. Aldosterone therefore regulates your blood pressure and water retention levels in your body. It also regulates nerve impulses. Most people have to take potassium pills when they take Fludrocort since Fludrocort causes the body to retain salt and dump potassium.

Symptoms of Too Little Aldosterone or Fludrocort