Triggers for Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis and Hypothyroidism

In the video titled “Triggers for Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis and Hypothyroidism,” Dr. Martin Rutherford, a certified functional medicine practitioner and chiropractor, discusses the potential triggers for these conditions. Stress and emotional trauma are mentioned as common triggers, and the relationship between stress and the thyroid is explored. The video also touches on the lack of agreement on laboratory criteria for diagnosing Hashimoto’s, the increasing number of females being diagnosed with the condition, and the impact of stress on the immune system and intestinal barrier integrity. Treatment options and the importance of addressing the root causes of the problem are also discussed. Overall, this video provides valuable information on the triggers for Hashimoto’s and hypothyroidism, shedding light on the complex nature of these conditions and offering potential solutions for individuals seeking relief.

Triggers for Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis and Hypothyroidism


Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and hypothyroidism are conditions that are becoming increasingly prevalent in our society. These conditions can have a significant impact on an individual’s quality of life and overall health. In recent years, there has been a growing body of research suggesting that stress and emotional trauma may play a role in triggering or exacerbating these thyroid disorders. In this article, we will delve into the complexity of Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, explore the relationship between stress and the thyroid, discuss the impact of stress on the immune system, and explore potential alternative treatments for managing chronic stress in individuals with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and hypothyroidism.

The Complexity of Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis

Hashimoto’s thyroiditis is a complex condition with various theories on its causes. While there is still much to be discovered, current research suggests that viruses, chronic stress hormones, and gluten may all contribute to the development of this autoimmune thyroid disorder. Hashimoto’s is characterized by the immune system mistakenly attacking the thyroid gland, leading to inflammation and a decrease in thyroid hormone production. This can result in symptoms such as fatigue, weight gain, cold intolerance, and depression.

Stress and Emotional Trauma as Triggers

One potential trigger for Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and hypothyroidism is chronic stress. When you experience stress, your body releases stress hormones such as cortisol, which can have a profound impact on your immune system. Chronic stress can lead to an imbalance in the immune system, increasing the risk of autoimmune conditions like Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. Emotional trauma, such as childhood abuse or the loss of a loved one, can also contribute to chronic stress and trigger or worsen Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.

Triggers for Hashimotos Thyroiditis and Hypothyroidism

The Relationship Between Stress and the Thyroid

Stress can disrupt the delicate balance of the thyroid gland. When stress hormones are released, they can suppress thyroid hormone production, leading to hypothyroidism. Additionally, stress can also lead to an autoimmune response in the thyroid, further exacerbating the symptoms of Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. The connection between stress and the thyroid is a complex one, and more research is needed to fully understand the mechanisms at play.

Diagnosing Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis

Diagnosing Hashimoto’s thyroiditis can be challenging due to the lack of uniform agreement on laboratory criteria. Different research groups and medical institutions may have different criteria for diagnosing Hashimoto’s. However, the Mayo Clinic criteria is often used as a reference. Typically, a diagnosis is made based on the presence of elevated thyroid peroxidase and thyroid globulin antibodies, along with characteristic symptoms and physical examination findings.

Gender and Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis

Statistics vary, but an increasing number of females are being diagnosed with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis compared to males. It is believed that hormonal factors may play a role in this gender discrepancy. However, the exact reasons for this gender difference are still not fully understood and require further investigation.

Triggers for Hashimotos Thyroiditis and Hypothyroidism

The Impact of Stress on the Immune System

Chronic stress has a significant impact on the immune system. Prolonged stress can lead to dysregulation of the immune response, impairing the body’s ability to fight off infections and increasing the risk of developing autoimmune disorders such as Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. Chronic stress can also affect the integrity of the intestinal barrier, leading to increased permeability and potentially triggering an inflammatory response.

Childhood Trauma and Chronic Stress

Childhood trauma, such as abuse or the loss of a parent, can have long-lasting effects on an individual’s health. Studies have shown that individuals who have experienced childhood trauma are more likely to develop chronic stress later in life. This chronic stress can contribute to the development of various health issues, including Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.

Surgery-Induced Chronic Stress

Surgeries, especially major procedures, can be a significant source of chronic stress for individuals. The stress response triggered by surgery can lead to an increase in cortisol levels, which can potentially worsen or trigger Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. Managing stress before and after surgery is crucial in minimizing the impact on the immune system and overall health.

Triggers for Hashimotos Thyroiditis and Hypothyroidism

The Link Between Stress and Hypothyroidism

There is evidence to suggest that stress can also contribute to the development of hypothyroidism. Chronic stress can disrupt the delicate balance of thyroid hormone production, leading to low levels of thyroid hormones. Additionally, the relationship between stress and Hashimoto’s thyroiditis means that individuals with this condition are more susceptible to developing hypothyroidism as the disease progresses.

The Prevalence of Stress in Society

Stress has become a prevalent issue in our society, with many individuals reporting high levels of chronic stress. The demands of modern life, including work pressures, financial concerns, and personal relationships, can all contribute to high-stress levels. Prolonged periods of stress can have detrimental effects on both physical and mental health, increasing the risk of developing various health conditions.

Stress and Hashimoto’s Disease

The connection between stress and Hashimoto’s disease is strong, particularly in females. Stress can trigger or worsen Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, leading to a cascade of symptoms and potentially worsening the overall health of individuals with this condition. Addressing chronic stress is crucial in managing Hashimoto’s disease effectively.

Triggers for Hashimotos Thyroiditis and Hypothyroidism

The Role of Emotional Trauma

Emotional trauma, such as the loss of a loved one or experiences of abuse, can have a profound impact on an individual’s health. Emotional trauma activates the fear center in the brain, leading to chronic stress. This chronic stress can trigger or exacerbate Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, contributing to the development of symptoms and complications.

Treating Chronic Stress in Alternative Medicine

Traditional approaches to managing stress often involve medications and conventional talk therapy. However, alternative medicine offers potential non-drug approaches to address chronic stress and its effects on the brain. Functional neurology, in particular, focuses on identifying and treating the root causes of chronic stress and imbalances in the brain’s functioning.

Functional Neurology as a Non-Drug Approach

Functional neurology offers a holistic approach to managing chronic stress and its impact on the brain. This branch of medicine focuses on rehabilitating the brain through various techniques and exercises. Treatment plans are highly individualized, taking into consideration each patient’s specific needs and triggers for the stress response.

Individualized Treatment and Identifying Triggers

Functional neurology aims to identify and address the specific triggers for chronic stress in each individual. This may involve evaluating past traumas, lifestyle factors, and personal circumstances. By identifying and addressing these triggers, functional neurology can effectively reduce chronic stress and its impact on the immune system and overall health.

Use of Adaptogenic Herbs

Adaptogenic herbs have been used for centuries to help the body adapt to stress and promote overall well-being. These herbs, such as theanine, ashwagandha, and holy basil, can help calm the stress response and promote a sense of calm and relaxation. Incorporating adaptogenic herbs into a treatment plan for Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and chronic stress can provide additional support for individuals struggling with these conditions.

Supplements to Calm the Stress Response

In addition to adaptogenic herbs, certain supplements can help calm the stress response and support overall well-being. GABA and phenibut are commonly used supplements that have been shown to have a calming effect on the brain and nervous system. These supplements can be used in conjunction with other treatment modalities to help manage chronic stress in individuals with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.

Addressing the Root Causes with Functional Neurology and Functional Medicine

Functional neurology and functional medicine take a comprehensive approach to managing chronic stress and its effects on the body. These disciplines aim to address the root causes of chronic stress, including identifying and treating imbalances in the brain and other systems of the body. By addressing the underlying causes of stress, functional neurology and functional medicine can provide long-term relief and improve overall health outcomes.

Frontal Lobe Exercises

Frontal lobe exercises are a crucial component of functional neurology in managing chronic stress. The frontal lobe of the brain is responsible for executive functions such as decision-making, problem-solving, and emotional regulation. By engaging in exercises that specifically target the frontal lobe, individuals can strengthen the brain’s ability to handle stress and regulate emotions effectively.

Referrals to Mental Health Professionals

In some cases, individuals may require additional support from mental health professionals. Referrals to psychiatrists, hypnotherapists, or psychologists may be made to address specific mental health concerns and provide additional tools and strategies for managing chronic stress. By incorporating a multidisciplinary approach, individuals can receive comprehensive care and support in managing their Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and chronic stress.

Long-Term Effectiveness of the Approach

The approach of addressing chronic stress through functional neurology and functional medicine has shown long-term effectiveness in managing Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and hypothyroidism. By identifying and treating the root causes of stress, individuals can experience improved symptom management, reduced inflammation, and enhanced overall well-being. This approach focuses on empowering individuals to take an active role in their health and provides sustainable solutions for managing chronic stress.

The Breakthrough in Addressing Neurological Aspects

The field of functional neurology has made significant breakthroughs in understanding the neurological aspects of chronic stress and how it affects the body. By studying the brain and its intricate connections, functional neurologists can develop targeted treatment plans that address the neurological imbalances contributing to chronic stress and Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.

The Connection Between Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Hashimoto’s

Recent research has revealed a connection between Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Some practitioners now refer to IBS as “irritable brain syndrome” due to its close association with chronic stress and neuroendocrine imbalances. This link further emphasizes the need to address chronic stress in individuals with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis to manage symptoms and promote overall gut health.

Resources for Further Information

For individuals seeking more information on chronic stress, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, and hypothyroidism, there are various resources available. The Power Health Talk website offers articles, broadcasts, and series on these topics, providing valuable insights and strategies for managing chronic stress and its impact on thyroid health. Additionally, consulting with a functional medicine practitioner or chiropractic neurologist can provide personalized guidance and support tailored to individual needs.

In conclusion, chronic stress and emotional trauma can act as triggers for Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and hypothyroidism. Understanding the complex relationship between stress, the immune system, and the thyroid is crucial in managing these conditions effectively. By embracing a comprehensive approach that includes functional neurology, functional medicine, adaptogenic herbs, and supplements, individuals with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and hypothyroidism can find relief and improve their overall well-being. With the right tools and support, it is possible to address the root causes of chronic stress and take control of one’s health.

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