Understanding Thyroid Problems in Women: Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment Options

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If you’re like many women over 40, you may have been diagnosed with a thyroid problem. Even if you haven’t received a diagnosis from a medical doctor, you may be concerned that your thyroid is a little sluggish … even malfunctioning.

Many women that come into my clinic have already been prescribed some sort of thyroid medication to deal with a thyroid issue. At one point, I looked at a sample of patients over a few months and approximately one-third of the patients were taking thyroid medication.

I’m not a medical doctor and will not interfere with the relationship you have with your prescribing physician. What I will share is my professional philosophy as a natural medicine practitioner.

Medication to Suppress Symptoms

Medication is designed to interrupt signals that your body is sending. That typically requires a pretty powerful chemical compound. Our body is designed to self-regulate.  

When our body’s natural signaling process is disturbed, there are side effects and consequences … intended and unintended.

If you have been on medication for more than 6 months, I encourage you to go back to your medical doctor and ask if the medication is still necessary … and if there are alternatives. Any medication or supplement should be taken short-term to buy you some time to figure out what’s really going on.

Signs and Symptoms of Thyroid Problems

The thyroid can be thought of as the “canary in the coal mine.” If your thyroid is malfunctioning, it is a sign that your body is under some form of stress.

Your thyroid doesn’t just malfunction.

One in a million might have a thyroid that truly malfunctions. One out of three women in a certain age range all with a malfunctioning thyroid is highly unlikely and should require a deeper look.

Thyroid gland

The thyroid gland is small but mighty. This tiny butterfly-shaped gland located at the base of the neck plays a significant role in regulating metabolism, body temperature, and energy levels. The thyroid produces hormones that affect almost every cell in the body.

When the thyroid gland is not functioning properly, it causes a variety of symptoms, including weight gain, fatigue, depression, and hair loss. If you find yourself dealing with thinning hair, it could be “Long COVID.” But it also could be related to your thyroid.

And it could be a combination of issues.

Residual toxicity from a viral infection of some sort may be affecting your thyroid. What you really need is some help clearing toxicity.

Diagnosing Thyroid Problems

One way to check if your thyroid is functioning properly is by using the basal body temperature method. Take your temperature first thing in the morning before getting out of bed for a few days in a row. If your temperature is consistently below 97.8°F, it may be an indication of an underactive thyroid.

In this video, I share the story of how I resolved my thyroid problems. I included a clip with a bit more information about the basal body temperature diagnosis technique.


Fortunately, there are some natural remedies that we can use to help support the thyroid. In my case, it became clear that I was deficient in iodine.

If you’re having other symptoms (like bloating after meals) that often points to small intestinal bacterial overgrowth … often referred to as SIBO. Iodine is a mineral that impacts many body functions and systems.

Iodine is an essential mineral that the thyroid gland needs to function properly. Selenium is another mineral that is really helpful to support your thyroid. If you’re not getting enough iodine or selenium, it can affect your thyroid and lead to various symptoms.

CAUTION: You don’t want to supplement with iodine unless you really need it. Minerals exist in our bodies in a harmonious balance that should not be interrupted unless we know there is a deficiency.

Seafood is a good source of iodine, but it’s important to choose seafood that’s low in mercury and other toxins. An even better option is seaweed, kelp, or other natural iodine-rich food sources.

Iodine Food Sources for Thyroid Problems

I often recommend supplementing with high-quality marine collagen. Food sources of iodine are the best way to supplement. It’s the way our body is designed to get nutrients.

So remember … if you’re experiencing symptoms, it’s important to avoid supplementing with iodine (or any other nutrient) unless you’ve confirmed that you need it. The exception is enhancing your food sources of micronutrients … including the type and quality of foods you’re regularly consuming.

Thyroid Issues Due to Toxicity

The most likely cause of thyroid problems is a build-up of toxicity. It’s important to address the toxicity in a way that doesn’t deplete minerals or create unintentional disturbance in your body.

You can start by eliminating toxins from your environment and diet. Choose organic foods whenever possible and avoid exposure to chemicals and pollutants. Additionally, certain foods can be beneficial for thyroid health, such as selenium-rich foods like brazil nuts, and zinc-rich foods like oysters and pumpkin seeds.

It’s much better to get the micronutrients your body needs naturally. Your body will take what it needs and discard the rest.

Can Stress Cause Thyroid Problems?

Yoga to Reduce Stress

Stress can also impact the health of your thyroid. Chronic stress can lead to imbalances in cortisol, a hormone that affects the thyroid. Make sure to prioritize self-care and stress-management techniques, such as yoga, meditation, or deep breathing exercises.

In conclusion, thyroid health is an essential aspect of overall wellness. If you’re experiencing symptoms related to your thyroid … or other thyroid-related problems, it’s important to address the root cause rather than simply masking the symptoms with medication. By making lifestyle changes, addressing toxicity, and incorporating natural supplements, you can support the health of your thyroid and improve your overall well-being.

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About the author 

Dr. Gala

Dr. Gala Gorman is a licensed Acupuncturist, Naturopath, and Author who offers practical advice and programs for people who are experiencing health issues resulting from chronic stress. She helps women relieve their symptoms, restore their energy, and reclaim their "Super Woman" status.

Dr. Gala advocates for getting to the root cause of the health issue and treating it naturally. She focuses on helping people learn to be their own health advocates. In her latest book, "What's Your Kryptonite?" she encourages readers to become their own PCP - Primary Care Person!

She uses advanced techniques that "reverse the clock" on aging.

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