The thyroid is a tiny, butterfly-shaped gland which rests in the middle of the throat. But while it is tiny, its importance to the body is enormous. Thyroid hormones help regulate energy levels and the body’s metabolism and also affect such important functions as a woman’s menstrual cycle and fertility, the strength and development of bones, the transportation of electrolytes throughout the body and countless other functions that keep the body on an even keel. That is why any imbalance in the thyroid hormones – whether that be due to levels that are too low or too high – can wreak such havoc in the body and cause some any health issues. While there are a number of prescription medications that are designed to help address this imbalance, there are also natural options available for thyroid treatment, such as those that are listed below.
While the name of this herb is comical, its effects on the body are serious. It is a great natural treatment option for those whose thyroid is underactive due to its high amounts of iodine. Iodine helps to stimulate thyroid function so regular use of this herb can help beef up a sluggish thyroid gland. (1)
The high fiber content of flaxseed make it a common choice to improve digestive health, but it can be helpful for an underactive thyroid as well. This is because of active compounds like lignans which can have a positive, stimulating effect upon the hormones. (2)
While this herb is best-known for its immune-boosting properties, it can also have the effect of calming down a thyroid gland that is overactive. If being used for this purpose, however, the root is the most effective part of the plant, so read the labels carefully before purchasing an echinacea supplement. (3)
Nettle is one of those rare herbs which appears to be helpful for both overactive and underactive thyroid glands! It is known as an excellent thyroid tonic and this is probably due to the fact that it is rich in many minerals that can positively affect thyroid health. (4)
Evening primrose oil
Evening primrose oil is probably most widely used for women’s health and fertility issues, but it can be equally useful at balancing the thyroid hormones, too. This is likely due to the presence of GLA, a fatty acid similar in structure to the Omega 3 fatty acids found in foods like fatty fish and some nuts. (5)
The takeaway here is that whether a person has an underactive or overactive thyroid, there are herbs to choose from that can help treat the condition naturally and without having to resort to prescription medications to keep the hormones in balance. Be sure to consult with an herbal practitioner or naturopath before beginning any course of treatment to make sure the particular herbs are appropriate and at the healthy dose.
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