Understanding The Adrenal-Thyroid Connection

Understanding The Adrenal-Thyroid Connection

Are you exhausted, even after 8 hours sleep? Do you suffer from brain fog? Do you feel cold all the time or have difficulty losing weight? If this sounds like you, you may be suffering from a thyroid deficiency, or hypothyroidism.

What’s important to understand is that in most cases, the malfunctioning thyroid gland isn’t the actual cause of the problem.  Other areas of the body are usually responsible for issues with the thyroid, and in many  cases it’s the weakened adrenal glands that lead to the development of thyroid conditions. This is important to understand, because when the adrenal glands are causing the thyroid gland to malfunction, if a healthcare professional aims their treatment solely at the thyroid gland and ignores the underlying problem with the adrenals, there is little chance of restoring optimal long term thyroid health.

The adrenal glands sit on top of the kidney’s, and among other things, they modulate our stress response and energy levels.

Many hypothyroid symptoms are so similar to adrenal fatigue that the two are often confused or misdiagnosed. Many people experience a combination of symptoms and signs suggestive of an underactive thyroid gland and/or adrenal dysfunction. Some of the most common symptoms include: fatigue, weight gain, depression, sensitivity to cold, muscle or joint aches, brain fog, poor memory, brittle hair and nails, shortness of breath, thinning hair, PMS, low libido and infertility.

If low-thyroid people with these symptoms are put onto the thyroid hormone drug, they sometimes respond negatively. These people may have coexistent, but hidden, low adrenal levels. If they take thyroid hormone by itself, the resultant increased metabolism may accelerate the low adrenal problem.

In summary, hypothyroidism can be a debilitating condition, and when combined with adrenal fatigue it can make you feel even worse. But the good news is that in most cases, people will respond nicely to a comprehensive natural treatment protocol and can restore their health back to normal again.

By Jo Coates

B.Nat; Adv.Dip.Naturopathy; Adv.Dip.Bowen Therapy, Cert. Hema; M.A.N.T.A.

Naturopathic Medicine Practitioner 

Jo Coates is a highly experienced Naturopath who takes a comprehensive approach to patient care and treats a wide variety of health concerns. She has a special interest in the treatment of fatigue, adrenal issue, thyroid conditions, children’s health, mental health, gastrointestinal problems, weight management and Specialises in Haematology Screening.


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