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Natural Awakenings Washington DC Metro

Natural Support for Thyroid Disease

May 01, 2016 11:32AM
by Andrea Beaman
Millions of people struggling with thyroid disease take prescription medications that offer relief of symptoms, but come with a slew of side effects.

Medications for hypothyroid and Hashimoto’s disease can lead to rapid or irregular heartbeat, muscle weakness, irritability, tremors, impaired fertility, shortness of breath, nervousness, sleeplessness, hair loss and decreased bone density. Medications for hyperthyroid and Graves’ disease can cause skin rash, itching, abnormal hair loss, vomiting, swelling, joint and muscle pain, dizziness, drowsiness, decreased white blood cells, decreased platelets and unusual bleeding.

Herbal medicine is much gentler on the body than pharmaceutical drugs and has been around for thousands of years. Many time-tested remedies can help ease suffering and pain without negative side effects, as well as heal the body on a nutritive level. Here are possible plant remedies for thyroid conditions:

 Eleutherococus – this root is an “adaptogen”, a substance that strengthens the body and increases our ability to handle stress. It doesn’t directly affect the thyroid gland, but it helps boost immunity, increase energy and alleviate the chronic fatigue and adrenal exhaustion that often comes with thyroid conditions.

Ashwaganda – this herb acts on the reproductive and nervous system and has sedative and immune-strengthening properties. For those feeling stressed-out or suffering from insomnia and reproductive issues, ashwaganda is a good herb to include in your thyroid-healing regime.

Black Walnut Hull – this is a traditional remedy for treating goiter and hypothyroidism. This herb is also useful for those suffering with bacterial overgrowth, candida, leaky-gut and bloating that often presents with thyroid disease.

Bugleweed (Lycopus) – according to herbalist, Matthew Wood, “Lycopus was discovered to be an excellent remedy for hyperthyroidism and hyperadrenalism. It reduces the output of thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) from the pituitary, turning down the setting on the thyroid level.” For those feeling hyper, suffering with extreme nervousness or heart-pounding thyroid storms, put this herb to work on calming your system.

Melissa (Lemon Balm) –“In the Middle Ages, people used this herb to reduce stress and anxiety, promote restful sleep, improve appetite, lower fever and ease the pain and discomfort of indigestion,” according to Michael Balick in the 21st Century Herbal. Lemon balm is antiviral. Many people suffering with thyroid disorders often complain of cold sores, and viral infections like Epstein Barr. Lemon Balm directly inhibits viral replication.

Bladderwrack – According to herbalist and noted expert on sea vegatables Ryan Drum, “much of the iodine in bladderwrack presents as di-iodotyrosine, an immediate precursor of the thyroid hormones, thyroxine and tri-iodothyronine. This makes it the sea vegetable of choice for treating thyroid disorders by providing the immediate precursors for T4 and T3.”

These herbs, combined with a thyroid-healing diet, can help shift the body into healing and out of suffering. When using plants of any kind, it’s best to work with a knowledgeable practitioner to get the right plan for the patient’s specific condition.

Andrea Beaman, HHC, AADP, is a holistic health and thyroid expert. She is a nationally recognized TV Host, holistic health counselor and author and named in the Top 100 Most Influential People in Health & Wellness. For more information, visit


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