You may have heard recording artist Kelly Clarkson recently lost a significant amount of weight and looks great. Serial dieters, and those of us who may have 5-10 pounds we;d like to rid ourselves of, are attracted to these stories like bees to honey.
In this instance, looking at what Clarkson has done is worth examining. She had an under active thyroid, one of the major causes of internal metabolic problems in the US, and perhaps everywhere. In fact, thyroid medication is the #1 prescription medication in the United States, with statin medications a close second.
What I like about Clarkson’s approach is that she didn’t crash diet; she adopted more consistent, healthier ways of eating. This solution is not a quick fix. It’s a lasting approach that will give anyone the best results.
A Holistic View of the Thyroid
The thyroid gland sits in your throat. Being in this position, it is known as the Great Communicator. It is one part of a larger hormonal system that relies on stability with regard to food, rest, exercise and emotions. When thyroid function is diminished, you can have symptoms like tiredness, thinning hair, thin lips and low energy. When it is overactive, another sign of lifestyle imbalance, you can be overactive, have trouble sleeping, and feel generally nervous or excitable.
What Throws Things Off
As noted, the thyroid is just one part of your hormonal, or endocrine system. The glands included in this intricate system are: pineal, pituitary, pancreas, ovaries, , testes, thyroid, parathyroid, hypothalamus and adrenals.
Solutions - It Starts with Food
When I work with someone who has a thyroid imbalance, for most, the first place I look is their food. Like Clarkson, making a commitment to eat fresh organic, non-GMO and pesticide free foods is critical. Sadly, with restaurant eating and eating on the go so prevalent today, this is new territory for many. It takes a change in lifestyle, and a return to the kitchen. But the results are worth it. Thyroid disorder is one of many autoimmune disorders, and each puts stress on the immune system. Healing it through a consistent healthy diet pays off in how you feel and how you can prevent susceptibility to disease.
The Adrenals - Another Key Factor
Adrenals are 2 little glands, part of the endocrine system, that sit on top of your kidneys. These are the glands that secrete cortisol, aldosterone and epinephrine hormones. These are stress hormones and are intended for accelerated energy in an emergency. If your lifestyle is a series of mini-emergencies, day ofter day, you will eventually deplete your adrenals leading to adrenal exhaustion. This condition is often expressed by the thyroid - the Great Communicator.
Healing Your Body
In our quick fix society, medications may stabilize your thyroid, but as seen with Kelly Clarkson and countless others, a change in lifestyle may even eliminate the need for medication.
Identify the area of your life that needs the most attention - is it your food, your stress levels, or your sleep?
Become educated. Learn what simple whole foods are. Buy or grow and prepare your food at home. Eat foods in season. Eat at the table. Eat enough but not too much. You can find answers to all of these challenges in my book Food Becomes You - Simple Steps for Lifelong Wellness
Look carefully at your lifestyle, and your reaction to it. Are you irritable, on edge, exhausted or feeling defeated? If so, start simply. Download a short meditation app and listen to it daily. Practice deep breathing several times each day. Get out in Nature. Have fun. If you are a novice to meditation, listen to my recording Stress Management ! Meditation & Affirmations.
Deep sleep is essential for weight management and overall health. If you have trouble sleeping, look at your lifestyle and see if you are working to the point of exhaustion. Make a plan for getting to bed with enough time to sleep 6-8 hours. Give your body a minimum of a 10 hour fast from eating. Look at lifespan.com or DrWeil.com for suggestions on getting better sleep.
More than anything, I hope this information reinforces my belief that your body can heal. We are all resilient beings and when treated well, each and every day, we can get better. Thyroid imbalance is your body’s way of telling you something in your lifestyle is not serving you. When you stop and examine how you are living, the clues will unfold.
I invite you to visit my programs page where you can see how I might support you. Start with a complimentary consultation just to talk about your challenges and your goals.