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Hashimoto's Disease: What You Need to Know

Are you having ongoing thyroid issues?  Maybe you're feeling fatigued and unwell? Maybe your thyroid medication is  going up and down every other month and you can't figure out why that is.

Perhaps you recently got diagnosed with Hashimoto's thyroiditis and you want to know what this disease actually is.  In this article, we cover what is  with Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, how does it happen and what's actually underneath this disease known as Hashimoto's thyroiditis.


So if you want to know what to do when you have Hashimoto's Disease, keep reading. 

So what is Hashimoto's thyroiditis? Well, first of all, thyroiditis is inflammation in the thyroid gland.  This happens when the thyroid gland becomes irritated or inflamed for one reason or another.  Hashimoto's thyroiditis happens to be the most common form of this health condition, this thyroiditis.  It is caused by your immune system attacking the thyroid tissue.  When it does that, it causes irritation and this immune action against your own thyroid is referred to as an autoimmune disease.

First thing in answering this question, what is Hashimoto's Thyroiditis is, it's an autoimmune disease.  Autoimmune disease occurs when the body's immune system makes a mistake.

How Does Hashimoto's Thyroiditis Start? 

That's right. It makes a mistake, which begins by the immune system making antibodies.  These antibodies are going to attack the cells or tissue of the thyroid gland.  Why would your immune system do this? Now, of course your immune system is unconscious or have its own thoughts.   So it's not thinking that it actually made a mistake.  The exact reasons behind how and why this happens aren't clearly understood.  However, it's thought to be tied in with something known as molecular mimicry.

The principle behind molecular mimicry is that the immune system makes a mistake when it's trying to basically make an antibody against a molecule that is foreign or different from self.  The idea is that there's a bacteria or viral proteins that have a similar molecular structure to the proteins of the thyroid tissue.  Not just any thyroid tissue, but the specific molecular structure of the tissue the antibody attacks. 
So when the immune system is trying to make and antibody against a foreign invader, like a virus or bacteria, it makes a mistake. The mistake happens because the protein on that virus or bacteria looks very similar to the protein on the thyroid tissue.  It may only be a couple amino acid difference in those two molecules.  When it makes that mistake, once that happens, those immune cell making those antibodies divide and proliferates.  Now you have Hashimoto's thyroiditis, and once that process begins is not very easy to unwind that process.  

That doesn't mean it's impossible, and there are ways to calm that down and reduce that autoimmune activity.   It just takes the right approach and persistence.

Now, back to our story on what is Hashimoto's thyroiditis.


What is Hashimoto's Thyroiditis

So because your immune system is having this ongoing attack on the thyroid tissue, the immune cells and inflammation interferes with thyroid hormone  production.

That thyroid gland then can't produce enough thyroid hormone to provide for the whole body, to keep the metabolism going and do all the things that the thyroid hormone does for your bodies.

As a result, people with Hashimoto's thyroiditis end up with an under active thyroid, also known as hypothyroidism.  In some cases, initially there may be an increased activity in the thyroid.  That is known as Graves Disease and it's hyperthyroidism.  This type is usually temporary and usually flips into the hypo state within a few months or possibly even a few years.

Whether it's  hypo or hyper, usually people will take medicine to regulate these high and low levels of thyroid activity.  Now, it's also possible to have Hashimoto's or auto antibodies against your thyroid and not have abnormal thyroid output.

Once your immune system begins to make these auto antibodies against the thyroid tissue, your day to day thyroid output can vary up and down.  This will depending on what's going on with those antibodies.  So that the symptoms that you're having when you have Hashimoto's thyroiditis from one day to the next may not be very predictable. 

So what are Hashimoto's disease symptoms? That's what we're gonna look at in another article. 

That should give you a better understanding of what is Hashimoto's disease.  If you have questions about the content in this article, please ask it in the comment section below.

If you want a customized plan on how to treat your Hashimoto's disease, click in the link below to get started. 

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