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I hope you enjoy these articles from my syndicated column, “Dear Pharmacist.” If you’d like to receive newly released articles in your inbox for FREE, be sure to sign up for the newsletter!

Your Tongue Tells a Story

Dear Pharmacist,
Sometimes my tongue gets bald, red patches, or thick yellowish coatings on it. I can’t figure out why this happens, or what it means. My tongue looks nasty. Suzy, I don’t know who else to ask since it’s very embarrassing. My doctor says that it’s nothing to worry about. Do you agree? – A.P., Ocala, Florida
 

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Confession From A Pharmacist: Some Medications Scare Me

Dear Pharmacist,
I just became a pharmacist and started reading your syndicated column. Your emphasis is usually centered around the benefits of vitamins, minerals or alternative treatments, as compared to prescription medications. Why don’t you recommend more of our gold standard pharmaceuticals which are FDA approved, unlike nutritional supplements? –JK, Gainesville, Florida
 

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Pain Relief for Tendonitis, Sprains and Strains

Dear Pharmacist,
After years of hiking without many problems, I began experiencing pain near my ankle and heel. My doctor diagnosed “Achilles tendonitis” and prescribed medicine which did reduce pain and swelling. I’m still worried I’ll not be able to hike again. What natural remedies keep this at bay? – J.S. Boulder, CO
 

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Dear Suzy,
I’m very tired and weak without my thyroid medicine. Now, I’m concerned about the thyroid shortage and worried that there will not be medication for me. What else can I do? M.K., Gainesville, Florida
Answer: There will always be thyroid medication, don’t worry. While this is all getting sorted out by the manufacturers and the FDA, let me assure you that it’s possible to create more thyroid hormone naturally. You can also make your cells more sensitive to circulating thyroid hormone.
The active version of thyroid hormone is called T3 and it makes you feel “awake.” The inactive hormone is called T4. In order for you to feel well, have energy and burn carbs and fat, your body must be able to convert T4 to T3. It’s pretty easy to do. Low thyroid (T3) can cause depression, weight gain, brittle nails, cold sensations and thinning hair.
Low thyroid (T3) will trigger your brain to produce some TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone) which shouts at your thyroid gland, “Make more T3, we don’t have enough!” When the gland makes some more T3, the TSH hushes up. It’s a complex feedback loop, but that’s the gist. With that in mind, here’s some more advice that can help you regain healthy thyroid levels:
Iron: You need sufficient levels of iron to make thyroid hormone and to get it into your cells where it works. Women with a heavy monthly flow often run short on iron. You can measure iron stores (called “ferritin”) with a simple blood test.
Trace Minerals: They help you convert T4 to T3 and include zinc, selenium and chromium. These minerals double as antioxidants which means that they do good housekeeping on your cells and protect the thyroid gland from destructive free radicals. It’s an inexpensive fix, take “chelated” minerals or drink green food supplements that contain marine-derived compounds.
Iodine: Another trace mineral that is absolutely critical in making thyroid hormone and also in protecting against breast cancer. It’s shocking but white bread often contains bromine which can cause iodine deficiency and interferes with thyroid functioning. So iodine is helpful to your thyroid, bromine is not.
Ashwagandha: In animal studies, this herb stimulates more T3 production. Additionally, it nourishes tired, stressed adrenal glands. This causes your stress hormone cortisol to come down, and it may help you lose belly fat.
Guggul: You get a lot of bang for your buck with guggul because it helps you make more T3, it can lower cholesterol/triglycerides and it may relieve joint pain and osteoarthritis.
Insulin: When serum insulin is high, thyroid hormone can’t work well. You can bring insulin levels down by exercising and taking various supplements.
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13 hours ago

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The following foods and medications may interfere with your medicine, specifically T4 absorption... #Thyroid Healthy ... See MoreSee Less

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Sam ran down stairs and bought me this beauty. Don't think me weird, but I can look at one flower for an hour and be happy doing it! What do you like to stare at? ... See MoreSee Less

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