Understanding The Endocrine System – Parathyroid

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The parathyroid glands are four tiny glands, located in the neck, that control the body's calcium levels. Each gland is about the size of a grain of rice (weighs approximately 30 milligrams and is 3-4 millimeters in diameter). The parathyroids produce a hormone called parathyroid hormone (PTH). PTH raises the blood calcium level by:

  • Breaking down the bone (where most of the body's calcium is stored) and causing calcium release
  • Increasing the body's ability to absorb calcium from food
  • Increasing the kidney's ability to hold on to calcium that would otherwise be lost in the urine

Normal parathyroid glands work like the thermostat in your home to keep blood calcium levels in a very tightly controlled range. When the blood calcium level is too low, PTH is released to bring the calcium level back up to normal. When the calcium level is normal or gets a little too high, normal parathyroids will stop releasing PTH. Proper calcium balance is crucial to the normal functioning of the heart, nervous system, kidneys, and bones.

Basic Responsibilities:

  • Calcium absorption and utilization
  • Connective tissue maintenance

Symptoms of Parathyroid Weakness:

  • HYPO-Parathyroid:

    • Muscle aches or cramps
    • Tingling, burning, or numbness in the fingertips, toes, and lips
    • Muscle spasms, especially around the mouth
    • Patchy hair loss
    • Dry skin
    • Brittle nails
    • Fatigue
    • Depression
    • Anxiety
       
  • HYPER-Parathyroid:

    • Kidney stones due to increased calcium
    • Bone spurs
    • Arthritis
    • Frequent urination
    • Abdominal (stomach) pain
    • Nausea and vomiting
    • Confusion and personality changes
    • Impaired memory
    • Constipation

Lifestyle Factors:

  • Exercise is important for metabolism and body temperature as well.  If you have low thyroid function, it is even more crucial to make exercise part of your daily life.
  • Avoid toxins.  Radiation, chemotherapy, x-rays, heavy metals, nuclear fallout, and all man-made chemicals damage the thyroid gland.  The thyroid protects us and is often the gland to suffer when toxicity is an issue.
  • High estrogen causes thyroid imbalance so avoid hormones in meat/dairy products, soy products, and synthetic estrogens found in make-up, plastics, herbicides, and pesticides.
  • Remove mercury or "silver" fillings.  Heavy metals leak down into the thyroid and cause damage
  • Avoid tap water.  Chlorine and fluoride are very dangerous to thyroid function.  Question any dentist who still believes fluoride is good for your teeth.
  • Get grounded, get outside barefoot, connect to the earth, connect to God and heal your thyroid!

Nutrition Factors:

  • Avoid all soy (estrogenic and damaging to thyroid function)
  • Avoid grains and complex sugars.  Grains especially, such as those with gluten, are hard to digest and can lead to auto-immune conditions such as Hashimoto's
  • Mineral-rich foods heal the thyroid such as seaweeds, sea vegetables, nuts and seeds
  • Healthy fats such as coconut, avocado, olives are also beneficial

Herbs & Supplements for the Parathyroid:

Learn About Other Glands in the Endocrine System:

 

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