“But My Doctor Says My Thyroid is Normal”

16171384_sEvery week people arrive at the clinic wondering if their thyroid is working properly.

Often, these patients have had a conventional thyroid test and have been told by their medical doctor that everything is fine. They arrive at our office unconvinced, however, because when they look up the list of symptoms of low thyroid function, they seem to have them all.

When we test further, we often find that the thyroid really isn’t working optimally. Why is that? Why does the story differ from your MD’s office to ours?

The discrepancy arises because of the difference in what is tested, and when.

  • Conventional medicine measures one thing: TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone). Your medical doctor uses that number as a way of assessing how well the thyroid is doing it’s job. If that test is normal, your MD won’t test any further. You’ll be told your thyroid is not the problem. End of story.
  • Naturopathic doctors measure more initially. Like your MD, we test TSH, but we also look at T4 (the inactive form of thyroid hormone), T3 (the active form) and TPO (a thyroid antibody).

Why? Because some people can have normal TSH levels, but still have thyroid issues which are only revealed by looking at the other numbers. Those people get the “all clear” on the first test, and their MD doesn’t look any further.

Why the difference in testing? It’s a difference in philosophy. Your MD is really trying to determine if your thyroid is diseased. As ND’s, we want to know if it’s working optimally, and those are not the same thing.

Curious about your thyroid? You can book an appointment online, or call the clinic at 705-444-5331.

A Healing Journey to Grail Springs

Grail-SpringsThe road to healing can be a bumpy one. Getting there frequently requires us to make many difficult lifestyle changes. We need to give up our addictions to sugar, coffee or booze. We need to move our bodies, and eat more vegetables. We may need to go through the often painful process of detoxification of the body and mind. And we need to rest and recharge.

All of this can seem impossible to tackle in our day-to-day routine.

I had the fortunate experience of stumbling upon a local treasure that helps people do just that – Grail Springs Spa, in beautiful Bancroft, about three hours north east of Collingwood.

At Grail Springs you are lovingly and gently guided on your road to healing. Set on a beautiful mineral lake in the Kawarthas, this magical place truly recharges the body and soul. Packages include all food, which is vegetarian and organic, and there is no sugar, gluten, dairy, alcohol or coffee.

There are yoga classes everyday, along with meditation, inspirational talks, films and forest hikes. Guests stay in beautiful rooms with the comfiest sheets you have ever felt, and enjoy the most healing and detoxifying spa treatments I have experienced.Grail Springs

I was there for three nights and it felt like I was gone for a week. I can home fully nourished, fully detoxified and fully rested.

I already have a relationship with healthy eating and exercise, so I knew how well I would feel after this experience. For others who are not as far down the path, this lovely spa takes care of all the details. You simply show up at the table, show up at the classes and show up at your treatments. You allow them to hold your hand through the first part of the journey – the really bumpy part. Once you get through it and realize how well you feel, it becomes much easier to incorporate the difficult changes into your day-to-day life.

Thanks, Grail Springs!

What We’re Having for Lunch

We recently had a Ruben, a fourth year naturopathic student, in the clinic, so we’ve got an extra name on the roster for our behind-the-scenes lunch coverage. 🙂  -Tara

Shelby:

  • “Big colourful salad” – kale, spinach, red lettuce, red pepper, broc, sunflower sprouts, sunflower seeds.  Topped with “Gil’s dressing”. (vegan, gluten-free)
  • Grilled veggies and azuki beans with sea salt and Indian spices. (vegan, gluten-free)

Kendra:

  • Roasted root vegetables, beets and turkey (gluten-free, dairy-free)

Ruben:

  • Homemade hummus and carrots.  Roasted potato and leftover roast beef. (gluten-free, dairy-free)

Tara:

  • Lentil, feta cheese and sun-dried tomato salad with short grain brown rice. Topped with roasted seeds and avocado.  Served over a bed of greens. (gluten-free, vegetarian)

 

Chelation for Reducing Heart Attack Risk

For years, naturopathic doctors have touted the benefits of chelation for a wide range of conditions including coronary artery disease, diabetes, kidney disease, heart disease, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, and neurological disorders like Parkinson’s.

Most of those years have been an uphill battle, with the treatment, which has been in use for decades, being marginalized and dismissed.

Recently, a 10-year, $31-million clinical trial found that chelation therapy does indeed help heart attack patients slightly reduce their risk of serious heart problems, possibly on par or better than statin drugs like Lipitor. Good news!

Statin/Cholesterol Resources:
http://chriskresser.com/the-truth-about-statin-drugs
http://www.businessweek.com/stories/2008-01-16/do-cholesterol-drugs-do-any-good

Chelation Study Coverage:
www.latimes.com/news/science/la-sci-chelation-heart-attacks-20130327,0,5208499.story
http://healthland.time.com/2012/11/05/chelation-for-heart-disease-study-shows-promise-but-experts-are-divided/