The thyroid gland is a precision piece of equipment, and when it starts to run into problems we shouldnt assume that treatment will be quick or easy. However, by using B vitamins, three in particular, the treatment of thyroid problems can be at least natural. Not so much easy as A-B-C, but easy as B-B-B.
The conventional treatment given by physicians for thyroid problems is a course of synthetic thyroid hormones. This treatment can be often very hit-and-miss, with constant monitoring needed as to how synthetic thyroid levels are affecting the condition. If the condition remains unaffected by treatment, then a lifetime could be spent on what is effectively a drug, no matter how natural it is designed to be. A less synthetic method of treating thyroid health problems is by using a natural thyroid hormone, such as an extract from cows. It has to be pointed out that the utmost care is always taken to ensure thyroid extracts from cows are kept free from contamination. Even so: Yuk. Plus, there is always the fear of virus contamination and no bovine hormones are 100% risk-free. In both cases it is hoped that changing the thyroid hormone levels will treat the causes of the thyroid problem, rather than just temporarily relieve the symptoms.
As mentioned previously(http://blog.mitamins.com/?p=197), thyroid problems are linked to immune system disorders; in fact, some thyroid diseases, such as Hashimotos disease, are simply a type of immune disorder. It is this connection that makes B vitamins not only an excellent way to treat the symptoms of thyroid problems, but also the root of the problem too.
Introducing the B vitamins
The B vitamins were once thought to be one compound, like Vitamin C or D, and were collectively called Vitamin B. This is because they were often found together in the same foods, and have similar chemical structures. Now, the term Vitamin B has fallen out of usage, and most people call the B vitamins by their individual name. There are three main B vitamins that help provide immune system support, and can therefore be used in the treatment of thyroid problems(http://www.mitamins.com/disease/Thyroid-Support.html). In ascending numerical order:
1 Vitamin B6: also known as pyridoxine. Vitamin B6 is important in keeping the lymphoid glands healthy. Lymphoid glands produce white blood cells, which are responsible for fighting infection and protecting the body from harmful germs and bacteria. So far, so good for Vitamin B6 being helpful in the treatment of thyroid problems. Vitamin B6 is also responsible for protein metabolism and cellular growth, all of which are important for the growth of a healthy the immune system; and healthy immune system means a thyroid without a problem.
2 Vitamin B9: more commonly known as Folic Acid. Folic acid in the diet or as a supplement catalyzes the production of T-cells, which increase immunity. It is known that the number of T-cells in the body decreases with age. The incidence of thyroid problems, particularly hypothyroidism, also increases with age (by age 60, one in five women will suffer from a thyroid deficiency). A coincidence? More likely folic acid can strengthen the immune system and be helpful in the treatment of thyroid problems.
3 Vitamin B12: or cobalamine. Vitamin B12 is responsible for the synthesis of S-adenosylmethionine (SAMe), a compound that has a strong effect on the bodys immune system. Cobalamine is also called an anti-stress(http://www.mitamins.com/disease/Stress.html) vitamin because it enhances the activity of the immune system, which helps body to fight stress. SAMe also helps in the treatment of hypothyroidism by stimulating the thyroid gland. Cobalamine helps in removing neurological disorders such as loss of memory, dementia, and numbness. Vitamin B12 is helpful in slowing down the damage caused to the thyroid gland by autoimmune disorders like Hashimotos disease, a kind of hyperthyroidism.
And the Rest
The three vitamins B6, B9, and B12 all have clear benefits in immune support and therefore the treatment of thyroid disease. However, many doctors advise against taking large quantities of individual B vitamins, as it may lead to deficiencies in the others. B vitamins are generally found together in nature, so it is always best to take them together when supplementing your diet in the treatment of thyroid problems. Most dietary supplements or natural remedies using a B vitamin should include it as a vitamin B-complex, with a balanced dose of all the B vitamins. That way, you can keep your nutrient levels balanced while still effectively treating your thyroid problem.