Your thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland in your neck, just above your collarbone. It is one of your endocrine glands, which make hormones. The thyroid helps set your metabolism–how your body gets energy from the foods you eat. According to the National Institute of Health, millions of people in the U.S. have thyroid diseases. Most of them are women. If you have a thyroid disease, your body uses energy more slowly or quickly than it should. A thyroid gland that is not active enough, called hypothyroidism, is far more common. It can make you gain weight, feel fatigued and have difficulty dealing with cold temperatures. If your thyroid is too active, it makes more thyroid hormones than your body needs. That condition is hyperthyroidism. Too much thyroid hormone can make you lose weight, speed up your heart rate and make you very sensitive to heat.
Do you have thyroid disease? Answer these questions and check your score below.
have thick or brittle fingernails?
have dry skin or frequently irritated eyes?
have a hoarse voice?
have thinning hair, hair loss, or coarse hair?
have thinning of the outer third of your eyebrows?
have cold hands and feet?
have excess fatigue?
have irregularities in your menstral cycle?
have a low sex drive?
have severe menopausal or PMS symptoms?
have frequently swollen hands and feet?
have blood pressure or heart-rate problems?
have high cholesterol?
have trouble remembering or concentrating?
have changes in weight for no apparent reason?
have depression, moodiness, anxiety, or irritability?
have muscle fatigue, pain, or weakness?
have a diagnosed autoimmune disease?
have a history of radiation treatments?
have a history of exposure to toxins?
have a family history of thyroid problems?
If you answered “yes” to fewer than two questions, your thyroid is probably healthy.
If you answered “yes” to 2 to 4 questions, you�re at mild risk for thyroid problems.
If you answered “yes” to 4 or more questions, you have a significant risk of thyroid problems.
Sources: Mark Hyman, MD, and Mary Shomon
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