One of the most common causes for unexplained weight gain or weight loss is when the thyroid gland is off balance. The thyroid regulates metabolism, making it an integral component in maintaining a healthy weight. When it is off balance, either overactive or underactive, weight fluctuations are common, along with other symptoms. It is important to understand the signs and symptoms of thyroid problems so that you can seek medical assistance to regain thyroid balance – if necessary.
Hyperthyroidism vs Hypothyroidism
There are two main malfunctions that are linked to the thyroid: hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism. Hyperthyroidism refers to an overactive thyroid, usually caused by disorders that stimulate over-production of the thyroid hormone. On the other end of the spectrum, hypothyroidism occurs when the thyroid is underactive, not producing enough thyroid hormone. Both can have serious impacts on your health and well-being.
Weight Loss and Other Symptoms of Hyperthyroidism
An overactive thyroid revs up the metabolism, causing a variety of symptoms that can alert you to the problem. It is similar to taking too much of a stimulant such as caffeine or other drugs. As it speeds up the metabolism, weight loss is one of the most noticeable signs, along with:
- Abnormal swelling in the front of the neck (goiter)
Hyperthyroidism can lead to serious health problems such as cardiac arrhythmia, angina, heart palpitations and even heart failure.
Weight Gain and Other Symptoms of Hypothyroidism
An underactive thyroid or hypothyroidism causes the body systems to slow down instead of speed up. If you have hypothyroidism, you may experience weight gain even when you are eating a balanced diet and getting enough exercise. In addition, you may notice other symptoms, including:
- Hair loss
- Weakness or low energy
- Brittle nails
- Feeling cold, especially in the hands and feet
- Muscle aches or joint pain
If not diagnosed and treated, other serious complications can occur, such as thickening skin, swelling, depression and heart failure. In women, who are more likely to suffer from hypothyroidism, it can also cause heavy menstrual periods, infertility, miscarriage and birth defects.
Both hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism can lead to critical health complications, even coma or death. If you or anyone you know has experienced unexplained weight gain or weight loss, along with any of these other symptoms, it is important to have diagnostic testing done to confirm or rule out a thyroid disorder. There are effective treatments available that can normalize the thyroid function and help eliminate the health risks of both of these serious conditions.
About Maturo Medical Weight and Wellness: Located in Tempe, Arziona, Maturo Medical is known for their professional hormone treatments and skill in treating hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism. For more information, visit: maturomedical.org today!