It happened again this week.
I saw a patient who is 48 and came to me a few months ago because she felt flat sensually and sexually. Let’s call her Daphne.
As part of our work together, I found she had a Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH) of 3.1 and a low free T3. In other words, her thyroid needed some tweaking in the direction that provides more energy, better metabolism and dovetails better with adrenal and ovarian function.
She had been on the same dose of thyroid medication (Synthroid) for 25 years. No changes. Ever.
I added a quarter grain of Naturethroid, or 16.25 mg. Simple change with profound results: Her sensuality perked up. Daphne felt more receptive to sex with her husband. She had more energy, for sex but also for living life more fully. She lost a lingering 5 pounds. This all happened in 6 weeks. She came back into the office with a new spring in her step: “I ran up the stairs yesterday, and then realized I haven’t run up the stairs in more than ten years!”
BUT. Her primary care doctor was incensed.
The mainstream doc told my patient, “I can’t support you going up on your thyroid hormones just because you need an easy way to lose weight.”
Excuse me? Is this mic not on? What’s wrong with mainstream medicine that they are so quick to write off patients as seeking a weight-loss quick-fix when really they just want to feel like themselves again?
Now this is a woman who knew she had thyroid problems. Other women, such as celebrity Gena Lee Nolin, star of Baywatch, don’t know that this is the reason for their weight gain, hair loss and lack of zest. Are you hands and feet cold? Do you have low sex drive? Are your nails brittle? Have you lost hair on the outer third of your eyebrows?
Has this poor treatment happened to you? Or have been dismissed or shamed for wanting to feel better in some other context? Please share your story with me in the comments section.
Let’s band together and stop mainstream medicine from equating a simple request to optimize thyroid into, in their eyes, a shameful search for excuses not to “exercise more and eat less.” Please.
Even celebrities are not immune to the paternalistic (and frankly, misogynistic) way that conventional medicine views this particular cry for help: celebrity Gena Lee Nolin had many years of struggle with baby weight (and having to fit into that tiny red Baywatch bathing suit before millions of TV viewers) and crushing fatigue before getting her thyroid sorted out. She was prescribed antidepressants and other poisons she didn’t need.