– The Thyroid Link
You complain to your doctor that you suffer from chronic widespread pain and abnormal tenderness. After much testing and no improvement from treatment, you are “fibromyalgia” for which there is no known cause or effective treatment. You try various treatments, which may include antidepressants, and painkillers. Helpful therapies are massage, chiropractic care and nutritional supplements, but they do not cure fibromyalgia.
Fibromyalgia researchers say they don’t know the cause of fibromyalgia, have never gotten a patient well, and have nothing but pharmaceutical medications to offer, but the late Doctor John Lowe from the American Academy of Pain Management and Director of Research of the Fibromyalgia Research Foundation said that the symptoms of hypothyroidism and fibromyalgia are similar, and he found that treating fibromyalgia using targeted thyroid hormones enabled fibromyalgia sufferers to recover.
The symptoms that fibromyalgia and low thyroid function share are: fatigue, hair loss, weight gain, dryness of hair, skin and eyes, excess muscle tension and slower reflexes.
The four most common causes of low thyroid function are nutritional deficiencies caused by poor diet, poor physical fitness, and some medication. Some patients also have deficiencies or imbalances of other hormones, such as cortisol, estrogen, and progesterone. Doctor Lowe describes this phenomenon in his book The Metabolic Treatment of Fibromyalgia.
Diagnosis of thyroid problems can only be done by medical doctors, but sometimes the standard test for thyroid function, the Thyroid Stimulating Hormone test or TSH, does not always reveal poor thyroid function. If you have fibromyalgia, it may be worth asking your doctor to have a full thyroid hormone profile done to reveal underlying problems.
Essential nutrients for normal thyroid function are zinc, iodine and selenium. Foods that include these nutrients are meat, seafood, seaweeds brazil nuts, mushrooms, brown rice and sunflower seeds.
Rather than accepting that you have a chronic and untreatable condition with no known cause, it is well worth the effort to find a reasonable explanation for your pain. Conditions like this do not strike for no reason – they always have an underlying cause. There is a vast amount of literature about fibromyalgia causes in the form of books and online forums and well worth a look.