The statistics tell us that over one million patients in the United States alone have undergone radioactive destruction of their thyroid gland due to hyperthyroid (Graves’) disease.1
This means you have a 0% chance to save your thyroid if you follow the conventional route and do radiation therapy.
Your doctor has most likely told you that you have 3 options:
- Anti-thyroid medication for life (or you risk symptoms returning)
- Radioactive iodine to destroy the thyroid
- Surgical removal of the thyroid
Wow, none of these sound good to me.
Most of my patients tell me stories about how sad, shocked, and confused they felt when their doctor laid out these options.
If you’re anything like them, I know you don’t want to make the wrong decision but something has to be done. You can’t live this way for the rest of your life.
But, what if I told you that Graves’ disease isn’t a thyroid problem…
And that by choosing one of those options, it wouldn’t be fixing the root cause of your disease.
If I’ve gotten your attention, keep reading, you may be surprised at what you discover…
Graves’ disease is a disease of the immune system, NOT the thyroid gland.
Yes, you read that correctly…
No, I’m not crazy or confused.
Here’s the burning question: why do most doctors focus treatments on destroying the thyroid?
My guess is that they don’t know the difference between treating the symptoms and treating the cause.
Too often the “focus” on thyroid disease is to get numbers “in range” on bloodwork. Once TSH is “in range”, many doctors believe their work is done, even if this means that to get the numbers in range they must burn or cut out your thyroid and you get to live the rest of your life on synthetic thyroid hormones.
That doesn’t sound like healing to me.
Now, I’m not saying that lab tests aren’t important but lab tests don’t tell the whole story.
The point I’m trying to make is that people are more than their blood work and disease doesn’t care about your blood work and can trick your blood work, making things look better or worse than they really are.
This is why the focus must be on treating the patient (not the lab work), by finding out the causes (why does this person have this disease?) …
Graves’ Disease Treatments Are Focused on the Wrong Part of the Body
As I said before, the cause of Graves’ disease is NOT a sick thyroid.
The cause of Graves’ is a sick immune system that mistakenly attacks the thyroid gland.
This is a huge difference.
Therefore, the primary focus needs to be on treating (balancing) the immune system.
Once the immune system is balanced, it will no longer perceive the thyroid as a threat and the attack will stop.
But let’s go a little deeper…
There are many reasons why the immune system attacks the thyroid gland.
Such things as poor diet, stress, traumatic/emotional injury, toxin exposure, lack of nutrients, poor sleeping habits, hormonal imbalances, and infections can all trigger an immune and inflammatory response.
If these things are left unchecked/untreated, the result is chronic inflammation, chronic overstimulation and confusion of the immune system, and the perfect setting for developing an autoimmune disease such as Graves’.
Your Thyroid Isn’t the Problem (Here’s What Is)
In normal thyroid function, the pituitary gland secretes thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) which tells the thyroid gland to release thyroid hormones (T3 & T4).
Thyroid hormones then tell the pituitary to shut down the production of TSH. This stops the thyroid gland from producing any more hormones (until the time the body needs them again). It is this feedback loop that keeps the production of TSH and thyroid hormones in balance.
However, when autoimmunity is turned on (from any of the causes listed above), autoimmune B cells make antibodies against TSH-receptors. This means that the antibodies are able to stimulate thyroid hormone production all by themselves!
So, now what happens…
The antibodies continue to produce thyroid hormones with no signal to stop.
This leads to the build-up of too much thyroid hormone in the body which then leads to Graves’ symptoms.
It becomes clear at this point that it is NOT the thyroid gland, it’s the antibodies (immune system) that are the true offenders in this disease.
As such, the immune system MUST be the focus of treatment.
If we think of this in terms of a tree…
The immune system is the root (cause) and the thyroid symptoms are the branch (effect).
In order to benefit the whole tree, the roots must be taken care of. In other words, you wouldn’t water the branches of the tree and expect it to grow. This doesn’t make sense.
In the same way, it doesn’t make sense to treat the branches (thyroid symptoms) of Graves’ disease and expect to get better.
How to Treat The Real Cause of Graves’ Disease
Now that you’ve uncovered the true culprit in Graves’ disease, you can begin to focus on the correct treatment plan.
This starts with calming down inflammation and putting out the fire in the immune system.
With my patients, we typically follow these six steps to turning off the inflammation…
- Autoimmune Paleo Diet – healing inflammation starts with the foods we eat
- Anti-inflammatory/Immune boosting nutrients – Vitamin D3, Vitamin C, Probiotics, Essential Fatty Acids
- OAT test – test for causes of inflammation
- DUTCH Hormone/Adrenal Test – test for causes of inflammation
- Comprehensive Stool Analysis – test for causes of inflammation
- Supplementation based on test results – once causes are found, personalized supplementation and recommendations will be added to address these causes
As you get the inflammatory response under control, the immune system will no longer be overstimulated and confused and it will stop attacking the thyroid. This will mean less Graves’ disease symptoms and the proper environment in the body where healing can take place.
Understanding the cause of disease leads to the path of wellness.
What All Graves’ Disease Patients Need to Know…
Despite what you’re told, you must know, your thyroid is just fine. If you actually think about how the body works, the problem is with your immune system, not your thyroid.
Remember, if you destroy your thyroid gland using one of the conventional treatment options, you cannot get it back. Please factor that into your treatment decisions.
There are typically 6 steps most Graves’ patients need to do to reverse their disease. I help people do this every single week and I’d love to support you too.
As someone who’s seen over and over how Graves’ disease (and conventional treatment options) can ruin lives, I’m passionate about helping others overcome this illness.
If you’re ready to get more support treating the real cause of Graves’ disease (and saving your thyroid) please book a FREE 15-minute “Graves’ Disease Troubleshooting” session with me where I’ll help you with the #1 problem you are currently struggling with and give you specific recommendations to take back control of your immune system.
I look forward to working with you.