Recently I read this article http://www.nature.com/mp/journal/v7/n2/full/4000963a.html, which really got me thinking about the role the thyroid has in maintaining our mental health.
"In humans, neuroendocrine challenge studies in hypothyroid patients have shown a reduced 5-HT responsiveness that is reversible with thyroid replacement therapy. In adult animals with experimentally-induced hypothyroid states, increased 5-HT turnover in the brainstem is consistently reported while decreased cortical 5-HT concentrations and 5-HT2A receptor density are less frequently observed. In the majority of studies, the effects of thyroid hormone administration in animals with experimentally-induced hypothyroid states include an increase in cortical 5-HT concentrations and a desensitization of autoinhibitory 5-HT1A receptors in the raphe area, resulting in disinhibition of cortical and hippocampal 5-HT release. Furthermore, there is some indication that thyroid hormones may increase cortical 5-HT2 receptor sensitivity."
So how common do you think hypothyroidism is? What do you think is the most prevalent cause? In what percentage of cases do you think low thyroid function is the cause of depression?
I think that the incidence of hypothyroidism is far greater than has been captured by the medical/scientific community. There are a great many people whose lab numbers are considered "normal" by endocrinologists, yet who have very clear symptoms of hypo (and whose other lab numbers really should cause DRs to suspect hypo). It is a sad situation for those folks with "mysterious" and debilitating physical and psychological symptoms who could be easily helped with a little thyroid replacement medication.
I'm starting to suspect that a great deal of hypo may be caused by damage of the thyroid gland resulting from chronic gluten exposure.
At least 13 million Americans suffer from thyroid disorders, and in more than 80% of cases, the problem is an underactive thyroid gland — hypothyroidism. The condition is more common in women, and the rate rises with age, reaching 20% in women over 65. The interest for mental health is that thyroid deficiency may be associated with cognitive and emotional disturbances, and thyroid hormones may be useful in the treatment of depression. for more this is the link were I found this answer.http://www.health.harvard.edu/fhg/updates/Thyroid-deficiency-and-mental-health.shtml
Autoimmune thyroid disease (Hashimotos thyroiditis) is the most common cause in Western countries, iodine deficiency worldwide. It's debatable whether being on the low end of normal is a common feature of relatively low iodine intake, and whether that's worse for paleos not eating iodised salt and eating a lot of goitrogens e.g. cruciferous vegetables. I read a case study of a Chinese women in the US who ate large amounts of Pak Choi every day and developed hypothyroid coma, but that was an extreme case!
In the large majority of depression cases there are other reasons, and thyroid function tests come back normal (though it's true this classes the whole normal range as the same and could mask a protective effect of being in the upper part of normal).
I have Overactive thyroid, I have not meet any one with it yet but I have meet more people with Hypothyroidism. My Doctor explain to me that the reason I have it was related to my 4 pregnancies, it was very hard to my doctors to even come out with a diagnosis because of the fact that mine bunch up in down so every time the test it it would come up normal or just a little hyper. The resold on tested my blood count for a week every other day time that had better detail information on it. While I was going thru all that I felt like I was losing my mind , I was sooo depress and had loss a crazy amount of wait. Before I was advise to see an endocrinologist my doctor at the time give me a kind of Prozac which almost kill me, it made more depress to the point of suicidal thoughts. That was only a week of taking the anty depression medication. I change doctors and my new doctor was wise enough to send to and endocrinologist. She safe my life. Now I take to medications one for my heart palpitations and the other for my hyperthyroidism. My family and I are on the paleo and we like it, I hope that this would keep my girls from catching any of this things . and maybe one day I can get off my meds.
Early paleo and low serotonin 7 Answers