A Secret Therapy that you can use to treat Hashimoto's Naturally
As someone with Hashimoto's, I probably don't need to tell you that there aren't many official medications or therapies available to treat your condition.
That's why this topic is so exciting.
Testosterone is a hormone that both men and women produce and it plays an important role in regulating MANY different aspects of your health.
One of the most important aspects that it regulates, or at least plays a role in regulating, is your immune system (1).
And your immune system is one of the main drivers of Hashimoto's thyroiditis because it is an autoimmune disease!
This means that using testosterone, in the right way, can help improve immune function and may even be able to help treat Hashimoto's naturally.
In this article, you will learn...
- The link between Hashimoto's and low testosterone
- Why women tend to have more problems with autoimmune diseases compared to men
- How testosterone can help your thyroid and your body
- Additional benefits of using testosterone, including weight loss
- And how to get testosterone
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The link between low testosterone and Hashimoto's Thyroiditis
When most people think of testosterone they think of men who use testosterone for bodybuilding.
And while testosterone is the predominant sex hormone in men, women still HAVE and NEED testosterone just as much as men do.
I would argue that testosterone plays at LEAST as important of a role in regulating your mood and overall health as estrogen and progesterone.
I'm not as concerned about testosterone levels in men, but they do provide us some interesting information that is valuable for women with Hashimoto's.
You see, men tend to have a much higher level of testosterone compared to women.
Men also tend to have a much LOWER incidence of autoimmune disease (2) compared to women.
The rate at which men experience autoimmune diseases, such as Hashimoto's thyroiditis, is about one tenth of the rate that women experience these conditions.
And one explanation for this difference is that men tend to have much higher levels of testosterone compared to women.
Testosterone is said to act as a "protective" mechanism against autoimmune disease, including Hashimoto's.
Wouldn't it be nice, then, if we could give this protective mechanism to women by using testosterone as a THERAPY?
It turns out that we can!
Testosterone can be used as a prescription medication and, if used correctly, can have a positive impact on managing Hashimoto's.
I'm not talking about using testosterone in women who have NORMAL testosterone levels, we wouldn't want to do this.
Instead, I'm talking about using testosterone in women with LOW testosterone levels who ALSO have Hashimoto's thyroiditis.
My experience suggests that most women who have hormone problems have an issue with testosterone levels.
They either have HIGH testosterone and tend to fall on the PCOS spectrum.
Or they have LOW testosterone and they tend to fall on the thyroid/Hashimoto's spectrum.
In both conditions, testosterone plays a major role in either causing the conditions or adding fuel to the flame to enable it to continue.
I've found that there is very little crossover between women and testosterone problems.
For instance, it's unlikely for you to have PCOS and Hashimoto's (though it can happen).
And this is most likely because of the impact that different levels of testosterone have on your immune system and other hormone systems.
Testosterone is NOT harmful if used correctly and safely
Bioidentical testosterone can be used in women with Hashimoto's to help TREAT Hashimoto's in a more natural way.
When I talk about using testosterone I am merely talking about replacing the low levels in your body up to a more natural and healthy level.
And you can do this by taking bioidentical testosterone cream.
This cream contains the exact same hormone that your own body would be producing naturally but is not able to right now for a variety of reasons.
By replacing this lost level you are using testosterone in a SAFE and EFFECTIVE way.
The wrong way to use testosterone would be to use testosterone in the doses designed for men and/or using testosterone which is not bioidentical.
This is where doctors and patients get confused.
Both men and women can use testosterone, but the testosterone that women need is usually about one tenth as much as what men need in terms of dose.
How to Easily Test your Testosterone Levels
Before you run out and try to get testosterone, you need to make sure that you test to see if you actually need it.
I stated previously that MOST women with Hashimoto's have low testosterone.
If you have Hashimoto's thyroiditis and you are reading this, then there is a very high probability that your testosterone level is low.
But, it's always good to check.
How do you do this?
It's actually VERY easy to check your testosterone level (much easier than your thyroid).
All you need are two blood tests:
- Free Testosterone
- And Total Testosterone
As a woman with Hashimoto's, you want your testosterone level to be in the top 50% of the reference range.
I tend to try and push those testosterone levels up into the top 25% of the reference range as I feel that's even better.
But if you aren't able to get up there, for whatever reason, you can still get results as long as you are in the top half.
I find that most women with Hashimoto's have a testosterone level which is in the bottom 25% of the reference range with some women having levels that fall BELOW the standard range.
It's safe to use testosterone if your levels are "normal" but "low normal" and fall within that 25% range.
If your levels are higher than that then you wouldn't want to use testosterone levels unless you want some of the additional benefits that testosterone provides which is what we are going to talk about next.
Additional Benefits of using Testosterone:
Women with Hashimoto's tend to have more symptoms than just those associated with their thyroid.
Symptoms like decreased sex drive, the inability to lose weight, and the inability to build muscle mass are real problems that you may be facing as you read this.
And, let me be the first to tell you that these symptoms are probably NOT caused by your thyroid but instead caused by your TESTOSTERONE level.
Treating your thyroid may help improve them slightly but they probably won't resolve completely until you treat the main issue (which is the low testosterone).
Here are 4 main additional benefits you may get while using testosterone:
#1. Testosterone helps your body build lean muscle mass.
Testosterone is one of the main hormones in your body which directly has an impact on your ability to build muscle mass.
Women with low testosterone often find that they have a VERY hard time building muscle mass even when going to the gym and lifting weights.
This is a problem because if you can't build muscle mass then your metabolism will always be lower than what it could be and this means it will be harder to lose weight.
#2. Testosterone can help you lose extra weight.
Testosterone is also a somewhat powerful weight loss therapy.
It can help you lose weight by improving your metabolism through muscle mass but it also has an impact on your energy levels.
The more energy you have the more active you will be and the more lean muscle mass that you have on your body the higher your metabolism will be.
Low testosterone is definitely a contributor to weight loss resistance in women with Hashimoto's.
Don't expect weight loss miracles when using testosterone but it's not uncommon to find that your weight comes off a lot easier when using it (3).
#3. Testosterone can help improve your sex drive.
Do you feel that your sex drive is either non-existent or much lower than it used to be?
Low testosterone may be to blame!
Low sex drive doesn't seem to concern some women but it has a huge impact on your quality of life, your relationships, and your mood.
A normal sex drive is also an indication that your sex hormones, including testosterone estrogen and progesterone, are where they should be.
Testosterone can help bring that urge and even improve pleasure during intercourse.
Of course, low thyroid also plays a role but I find that testosterone tends to be a bigger culprit when low sex drive is a symptom.
#4. Using Testosterone can improve your mood and reduce depression and irritability
Last, but not least, testosterone therapy has a very positive impact on mood.
Using testosterone can reduce irritability levels and even treat depression.
Do you feel like you are more irritable then you have been in the past?
This is a symptom and something that shouldn't be ignored.
It's often one of the first signs of low testosterone.
Depressive symptoms can be caused by your thyroid and/or testosterone levels but I find that women who use testosterone have a much "lighter" or "happier" mood.
How do you get Testosterone?
Testosterone is a prescription medication which means that you will need to get it from your current doctor.
As you probably already know, endocrinologists tend to be difficult to work with and are probably NOT your best bet if you are trying to get testosterone therapy.
Instead, you will probably find better luck in going to a doctor who specialized in bioidentical hormones.
These doctors are much more knowledgable about therapies, such as testosterone therapy in women.
In addition, you may also find help from these types of doctors:
- Doctors who specialize in integrative medicine
- Doctors who specialize in functional medicine
- Doctors who specialize in anti-aging medicine
Doctors that are NOT likely to help you include:
- Conventional family practice doctors or primary care physicians
- Pretty much any standard doctor unless they specifically state that they specialize in the areas listed above
Why is it so hard to get doctors to treat and manage your hormones?
The short answer is that they don't learn it in medical school or residency which means it's up to them to learn it on their own.
And many doctors don't understand their value or benefit so they don't take the time.
Testosterone is an amazing and effective therapy that can be used to naturally treat and manage Hashimoto's thyroiditis.
Not only is it safe and effective, it also has many additional benefits that may be able to solve some persistent symptoms that you are experiencing that may not go away with other thyroid treatments.
I've personally used testosterone on many women with Hashimoto's with GREAT success.
Now I want to hear from you:
Have you used testosterone to treat Hashimoto's?
Are you currently using it now?
Are you planning on asking your doctor for it?
Do you know if your testosterone levels are low?
Leave your questions or comments below to keep the conversation going!
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