What Is Hashimoto’s Disease?

by Dr. Edward Group DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM Published on , Last Updated on

A woman is holding her throat. Hashimoto’s Disease occurs when the immune system deviates from its normal function.The prevalence of thyroid disorders in America has reached epidemic proportions and it’s only getting worse. Hashimoto’s disease, also known as lymphocytic thyroiditis or autoimmune thyroiditis, is the most common thyroid disease. It’s characterized by chronic inflammation of the thyroid gland, reducing the gland’s normal function. Reduced thyroid function is called hypothyroidism and is often associated with weight gain, lethargy, and inadequate growth in children.

What Causes Hashimoto’s Disease?

Hashimoto’s occurs when the immune system deviates from its normal function and begins to attack healthy cells in the thyroid as if they were foreign invaders. The immune system attacks the thyroid by producing antibodies, slowly deteriorating the gland’s ability to produce thyroid hormones. The aggregation of white blood cells, or lymphocytes, propels the process behind Hashimoto’s disease. [1] [2]

Over 20 million people are estimated to have Hashimoto’s disease. Compared with men, women are 7-9x more likely to be diagnosed with the disorder. It seems that estrogen dominance in women reduces iodine absorption in the thyroid, possibly contributing to the increased risk in the female population. [3] Genetic predispositions are often key factors in Hashimoto’s disease, and scientists have recently discovered five different genes that are integral to this disorder. [4]

Signs and Symptoms of Hashimoto’s Disease

As the disease progresses, the thyroid gland may enlarge, giving the appearance of a swollen neck. Known as goiter, it’s commonly associated with hypothyroidism, a symptom related to Hashimoto’s disease. An underactive thyroid associated with Hashimoto’s disease usually results in:

  • Fatigue
  • Listlessness
  • Weight gain
  • Sluggish metabolism
  • Lethargy
  • Cold intolerance
  • Paleness and puffiness in the face
  • Joint and muscular aches
  • Constipation
  • Dry, brittle, thinning hair
  • Irregular periods
  • Depression
  • Shallow/slowed heart rate
  • Difficulty conceiving

With many of these symptoms, it isn’t uncommon that some patients are diagnosed with depression before they are diagnosed with Hashimoto’s disease. For some individuals, Hashimoto’s disease may present little to no symptoms, making it harder for doctors to diagnose or treat crucial thyroid issues.

Have you ever experienced difficulty with your thyroid? What were some of the things you did to contribute toward your health? Leave a comment and share your experience!

References (4)
  1. Katja Zaletel and Simona Gaberscek.Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis: From Genes to the Disease. Current Genomics. December 2011; 12(8):574-588.
  2. Dimitry A. Chistiakov. Immunogenetics of Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. Journal of Autoimmune Diseases. 2005, 2:1.
  3. Cutolo M, Capellino S, Sulli A, Serioli B, Secchi ME, Villaggio B, Straub RH. Estrogens and autoimmune diseases. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences. 2006 November;1089:538-47.
  4. Eric M. Jacobson, Ph.D. and Yaron Tomer, M.D. The CD40, CTLA-4, Thyroglubulin, TSH Receptor, and PTPN22 Gene Quintet and Its Contribution to Thyroid Autoimmunity: Back to the Future.J Autoimmun. 2007; 28(2-3): 85–98 - FACP

†Results may vary. Information and statements made are for education purposes and are not intended to replace the advice of your doctor. Global Healing Center does not dispense medical advice, prescribe, or diagnose illness. The views and nutritional advice expressed by Global Healing Center are not intended to be a substitute for conventional medical service. If you have a severe medical condition or health concern, see your physician.

  • Lili

    I would of like to see how is treated this so important for all of us that believe can have this disease since i think this is what i have i went to doctor and says my thyroid levels are fine and sent me over the psychiatric but i dont feel depressed in any way i just need my doctor to believe i have this symptoms that i hate and to tell me how to fix it instead of telling me my results are fine and since they are fine im crazy and need to take antidepressants…. So frustating…

  • What symptoms are you having? Any chance it’s not your thyroid at all but something else? You may want to seek a second opinion if this doctor isn’t helping you get at what you want gotten at.

  • renee d

    Lili if the doctor checked only your TSH he did not do a complete exam
    of your levels. Demand further testing or find another doctor who will be more thorough.

  • bee

    So, do you find that your product can treat thyroid problem of the Hashimoto kind?

  • Nope.

  • Ame

    1- Even while on Synthroid for Hypo, can Detoxadine help at all? With fatigue, metabolism, depression, etc?

    2- It was discovered a couple of years ago that my 14 yo daughter has thyroid antibodies. She is currently on meds for anxiety/depression and high cholesterol :(. She also has an extremely low metabolism. Could Detoxadine help her?

    Many thanks Dr Group, for all you do!!

  • Thanks for reaching out. Really depends what’s at the root of these problems. If an iodine deficiency is involved, Detoxadine is a fantastic source of nascent iodine and can help lick that problem. If she’s getting plenty of iodine but these problems have other sources, those will have to be addressed separately.

  • sara

    Hi, I was diagnosed with Hashimotos several years ago. However, my thyroid was in normal range. I eat very healthy-mostly gluten free and exercise but I cannot lose weight. I’m about 30 pounds overweight. I purchased the Detoxiadine a week ago. The dosages seem quite higher than what is recommended. Can you explain this? Also, I have read that Selenium is very important along side of Iodine. Can you comment on this as well? Thank you!

  • It’s usually advised that people with Hashimoto’s talk to their doctor before adding supplemental iodine to their diet, you may want to do that before moving forward.

  • Hey Bee, thanks for reaching out. We don’t have a product for treating Hashimoto’s. In fact, that’s a condition with a lot of individual things to consider and it’s best to consult your healthcare provider about the best course of action for you and your personal situation.

  • stonegrower

    I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis earlier this year. Since then I have had extensive blood work done several times. Doctors I found are clueless of how to help you. I had developed a goiter, lost weight, rapid heart rate, lose of hair, extreme fatigue, depressed, painful thumb joints, not able to sleep, hot flashes every hour. It was ugly. Then I started taking Pregnenolone 50mg and DHEA 25 mg daily. All symptoms vanished in 2 weeks except for the joint pain. Then I did Global Healing’s colon and liver cleanse. The liver cleanse at the end with the olive oil made me so sick moving the toxins, it was difficult but the cleanses were worth it. I avoid gluten and soy at all cost, and try to eat very clean along wth supplements to support the thyroid. My blood work keeps getting better, and I am due for another along with an ultrasound for nodules on the thyroid in a month. It has been a very slow process, but I feel better than I did earlier this year. I still have a goiter – it is smaller and I still get fatigue easily. It’s been a learning process.

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