Hashimoto’s disease is an autoimmune disorder that causes the immune system to attack the thyroid, causing low-thyroid function. The condition for an under-producing thyroid is called hypothyroidism.

The symptoms of Hashimoto’s disease can mimic that of depression.

According to the Mayo Clinic, Hashimoto’s does not display obvious symptoms, except for maybe some swelling in the front of the neck. Hashimoto’s causes damage to the thyroid slowly, eventually exhibiting signs of low thyroid function. But even then, the symptoms of Hashimoto’s and depression are so similar that many doctors will unfortunately be quick to misdiagnose.

Hypothyroid symptoms include:

  • fatigue
  • sluggishness
  • weight gain
  • muscle aches
  • trouble concentrating
  • lack of motivation
  • hair loss
  • brittle nails
  • constipation
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Local Cherokee County man, Rick Meeder, discussed with Fox 5 Atlanta about his journey to discovering his Hashimoto’s disease. Rick assumed his recent divorce was to blame for his symptoms, but as time passed, he still wasn’t feeling well. He visited his doctor about the chronic symptoms. His doctor ordered a blood test and discovered that his thyroid hormone levels were low. The conventional medical procedure is to prescribe a lifetime synthetic hormone therapy, and that is what happened. Meeder felt better for a while, but years later, despite his continued use of the synthetic hormone, he was once again struggling with his symptoms.

It wasn’t until he sought a preventative medicine professional did he really start to feel better. Angel Nofzinger, a nurse practitioner with Preventive Medicine in Sandy Springs, provided a more in-depth evaluation of his whole body health - and found that Meeder, in fact, had Hashimoto’s disease. She also discovered that Meeder had certain food sensitivities that affected his body’s ability to respond to the hormone therapy. Nofzinger says many patients with Hashimoto's are sensitive to certain foods.

Like in Meeder’s case, the key to treating Hashimoto’s disease is an individualized lifestyle with specific recommendations based on the patient’s needs. Because of this clinical approach, Meeder is finally feeling like himself again.

Many people who have Hashimoto’s disease and autoimmune disorders have found relief from their condition by way of these customized treatments found in preventative care and functional medicine. These models provide comprehensive evaluations that identify deficiencies, explain the reasons why the individuals are feeling their symptoms, and steps they can take to renew their health. If you are experiencing multiple symptoms like the ones above and haven’t found any relief, you may find success with these alternative treatments.

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