What Distinguishes Hypothyroidism From Hyperthyroidism?

Thyroid disease affects approximately 9% of the Filipino population and is more prevalent among women.

The thyroid gland, located in the neck, is responsible for producing hormones essential for proper brain function and metabolism. In the Philippines, thyroid disease affects approximately 9% of the population, with a higher prevalence in adult women. Research from the American Thyroid Association suggests that as many as 20 million Americans have a thyroid condition, and up to 20% of them are unaware of their condition. Studies conducted in the Philippines also revealed that 8.53% of the population had some form of thyroid dysfunction, with a majority of affected individuals being females over 48 years old. Additionally, Filipinos with thyroid dysfunction were found to have a higher prevalence of goiter.

The Function of the Thyroid Gland

The thyroid gland is responsible for producing hormones essential for brain activities, metabolism, heartbeat regulation, and body temperature. Neglecting an unhealthy thyroid can cause complications that affect other vital body functions, which may result in serious health problems.

Symptoms of an Unhealthy Thyroid

Symptoms of an abnormal thyroid gland vary, and the condition may manifest differently in each person. Some common indications of an unhealthy thyroid gland include feeling consistently tired despite having enough sleep, sudden feelings of anxiety, and changes in bowel movements. Other symptoms include excessive hair loss, sudden weight gain, irregular periods, infertility, and mental fatigue.

Causes and Types of Thyroid Disease

Thyroid disease is caused by two primary factors: hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism. These two conditions result in an imbalance of hormones produced by the thyroid gland. The symptoms of each condition can vary greatly, and may depend on a variety of factors.

Thyroid disease is classified into two primary categories: hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism. Each condition has its own unique symptoms that can vary greatly from person to person. Some common symptoms of hypothyroidism may include weight gain, fatigue, and depression, while symptoms of hyperthyroidism may include weight loss, anxiety, and difficulty sleeping. A chart of common symptoms is provided below for reference.

Hypothyroidism may be caused by an existing medical condition such as thyroiditis, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, iodine deficiency, and postpartum thyroiditis. Meanwhile, hyperthyroidism can also be the result of other illnesses such as Grave’s disease, thyroiditis, excessive iodine intake, and overactive nodules within the thyroid. If you are suffering from hypothyroidism, it may be because you lack iodine in your diet, which is essential for the production of thyroid hormones. To address this, you should consume foods rich in iodine like seafood and seaweed. Conversely, those with hyperthyroidism should increase their intake of cruciferous foods like broccoli, kale, and cauliflower, which can help reduce the production of thyroid hormones.