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Fixing the Root Cause of Thyroid Issues

by Dr. Doug Cutler

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A simple blood test will let you know if you have thyroid issues, but patients have asked why they still have symptoms if their test came back “normal.” A naturopathic doctor (ND) realizes it is misleading to only order a thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) blood test. Here are a few tips for addressing the root cause of thyroid issues.

Take the Proper Medication
NDs are trained to look at many factors of your general health to determine the root cause of your health concerns. Along with blood tests for TSH, T4 and T3, NDs will look at immune disorders, digestive issues, vitamin deficiencies, blood sugar, emotional imbalances and circulation issues. They often will prescribe natural T3/T4 combination thyroid medications (WP Thyroid, Armour Thyroid or Nature-Throid).

Look at Adrenal Function
The HPTA axis involving the hypothalamic, pituitary, thyroid and adrenal glands is often overlooked by conventional medicine but plays a pivotal role in overall health, which can easily be threatened by emotional stressors. The adrenal glands, being interconnected to our thyroid gland, are affected by cortisol being released by stress or other causes, such as toxic exposures and other autoimmune factors, stimulants, dietary factors and more. Symptoms of adrenal gland dysfunction are chronic fatigue, dizziness, shaking hands, anxiety, nausea and inflammation to name a few.

Although life always provides stressors, it’s how we handle them that makes a positive or negative effect on our health. Consistent exercise, utilizing stress outlets and eating an organic, non-inflammatory diet—while supplementing for nutritional needs—helps patients achieve optimal health.

Eliminate Food Sensitivities
Having a food sensitivity panel done can show what foods you may react to. Even healthy foods, such as fruits and vegetables, could be detrimental, as they can cause inflammatory responses that may lead to thyroid dysfunction and other autoimmune conditions.

In addition, certain high-fiber foods and supplements can affect thyroid medication absorption, so it’s important to see your ND, who will look at all factors.

To regain optimal thyroid health, one must explore and address the underlying cause. In addition, gastrointestinal health, emotional stressors, certain pathogens, nutritional deficiencies, environmental toxicant burden and lifestyle habits need to be explored and addressed.

NDs are trained to look at many factors of your general health to determine the root cause of your health concerns.

Dr. Doug Cutler is a Licensed Naturopathic Physician and practices at Cutler Integrative Medicine, 31350 Telegraph Rd, Suite 102, Bingham Farms, MI. For more information call 248-663-0165 or visit his website:

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