Thyroid issues discussion with Vancouver Naturopath, Dr. Nicholas Jensen of Divine Elements
Mark: Hi, it’s Mark Bossert at Top Local Lead Generation. We’re here with Naturopath Dr. Nicholas Jensen from Vancouver, BC. He’s the owner and runs a clinic called Divine Elements. How’re you doing today Dr. Nicholas?
Dr. Nicholas: I’m doing great Mark, how are you doing?
Mark: I’m good. So we’re going to talk about thyroid – which is a pretty common thing and whether using Synthroid or more natural alternatives are better. So what’s the deal?
Dr. Nicholas: Yeah, so the reality is thyroid is a very, very common problem and typically we’re seeing more hypothyroid issues that are showing up. So what does hypothyroid look like? It’s typically unexplained weight gain, constipation, dry hair and skin, nails that are brittle, hair loss is quite common, that depressed mood and low energy, these are just to name a few. There’s definitely other signs and symptoms of thyroid decline, but those are definitely more common ones.
So the story behind Synthroid is interesting. It’s actually the number one most prescribed medication according to the 2013 report and what does that mean? That means 22.6 million prescriptions are being given out every month. So the reality is that Synthroid is actually ever prescribed once TSH, which is Thyroid Stimulating Hormone, goes above an elevated range which is technically described as hypothyroid. So Synthroid being that it is so commonly prescribed, is actually only just in its form of T4 which is an inactive form of thyroid hormone. So the reality is that so many people are experiencing these symptoms and may be kind of flying under the radar, not actually outside of the actual range, so the number we’re seeing of prescriptions don’t actually include the other people who are still dealing with these problems.
So we ask people in the clinic, how are you doing with the Synthroid, is it working for you? We get two responses typically. One is that, I’ve been on it for 5-10 years and I don’t really know why I’m on it, I don’t know what it’s doing, I don’t feel any different. Number two is, yes I’ve definitely gained benefit from Synthroid, however symptom A,B,C, D are still showing up in my life.
So the great news is there’s a natural solution for, instead of using Synthroid; Synthroid being a pharmaceutical counterpart to desiccated thyroid or also known as Amour Thyroid. What this is is a natural glandular extract of hormone. Desiccated thyroid is actually taken from a pig source, from the thyroid gland. Where Synthroid, the pharmaceutical form, is just in the form of the T4, this is inactive thyroid hormone. Desiccated thyroid is the thyroid glands and also contains 80% T4 and the remainder is in the active form of T3. So usually when people who are on Synthroid aren’t gaining the benefits it’s because their inactive form of thyroid is not converting properly into T3, the active form for the majority of people. Also interesting to note is that desiccated thyroid or Amour Thyroid, they kinda go by the same name, except that desiccated thyroid is a compounded form is actually, historically the treatment of choice. So this was on the scene, well before Synthroid was, which is quite interesting that now it’s Naturopathic Doctors or Functional Medicine Practitioners, who are actually prescribing desiccated thyroid which was always a treatment of choice. The results were always great. It’s just that it wasn’t necessarily backed by a large pharmaceutical company. That’s a whole other topic obviously!
So one study I looked at showed a population of 70 individuals and of those 70, 49% preferred desiccated thyroid and of those 49% also reported a much improved weight loss as well because with Synthroid they’re not typically getting those results; 19% of that particular population preferred Synthroid and 23% had no preference. So in that small population size, we’re seeing this increase in numbers in favour or preferring desiccated thyroid.
So in our practice, whenever we see people come in with a prescription of Synthroid, we are always recommending its counterpart in the form of the natural thyroid hormone called Desiccated Thyroid, as it continues to clinically outperform Synthroid. So it’s important obviously, that whenever you’re working with hormones, whether it’s Synthroid or Desiccated, that you’re getting a professional to address you as an individual and what works for the blanket of people doesn’t necessarily work specifically enough for you. So in saying that desiccated thyroid and Synthroid are both prescribed medications so you do actually need to see a health care practitioner in order for it to be prescribed.
So, there’s lots to talk about thyroid and I’m excited to dive into more of the causes behind thyroid imbalance and the connection to some of the other glands which we will definitely be doing in upcoming episodes. But hopefully that gives you a good sense of the main differences between desiccated thyroid and Synthroid and looking for an option to use the natural hormone counterpart.
Mark: Great. So we’ve been talking about thyroid issues with Dr. Nicholas Jensen. He’s a Naturopath in Vancouver. His clinic is called Divine Elements. You can reach him at www.divineelements.ca or give him a call 604-568-3735. Thanks
Dr. Nicholas: Thanks so much Mark. Have a great day.
Mark: You too.