Over at Primal Docs, some DC is blogging about hair loss and hypothyroidism again.... [groan]
Most of these "professionals" only know what they've read -- they've never dealt with hypothyroidism in themselves, and what they've done with their patients is PURE MAINSTREAM BS most of the time. They may THINK they're on the cutting edge because they're testing for ANTIBODIES (OOOOH!) ... but it's just the same ol' same ol' from where i sit.
I've come to look at hypothyroidism in a similar way to how Wooo looks at obesity -- the "experts" have the causation completely backward. Though it seems that low thyroid output may cause certain irregularities of function, i found often that the irregularity itself causes a slowdown in production or conversion. Both the horse AND the cart influence how your buggy-ride progresses.
A long time ago, i looked critically at the list of hypothyroidism symptoms, and concluded that many of them are nothing more or less than micronutrient deficiencies. I started by doing a LOT of reading, then began adding in supplements one at a time to see how they would affect my health and well-being -- and i paid a LOT of attention to nutritional conflicts-of-interest and co-dependencies, so that i could rely on what i found. If i saw that one didn't work as expected, i read some more to see if the actual CHEMICAL in the bottle was the right kind to use, or if time-of-day or diet made a difference with it. I really worked at the details. When i seemed to have found a magic bullet, i withdrew and reintroduced it a few times, just to be sure.
And you know what i found in this specific case? Iron deficiency. The naturopaths, chinese-medicine practitioners and chiropractic internists have the whole blogosphere scared of this critical mineral. What i consistently hear, though, is that a healthy system adjusts its absorption depending on need, not how much is ingested. If there IS a case of overload and over-storage, you'd better start looking around for something ELSE wrong. Iron "overload" isn't caused by eating a lot of meat -- it's NORMAL for the body to not absorb what it doesn't need. Overload means there's a problem with inhibiting absorption when it's not appropriate.
23andMe looks at the genes for hereditary hemochromatosis. There's a good discussion there, too, about the low odds of suffering from the disease EVEN IF YOU HAVE THE WRONG SNPs. I'll bet the farm that the true cause of hemochromatosis -- what sets it off -- hasn't properly been determined yet. "Scientists don't fully understand how the body controls iron levels, so it has been difficult to understand how changes in the HFE gene cause HH." ...but that doesn't stop people from speculating, does it?
In my case, i take my iron supplement in the middle of the day, separated by hours from supplements other than vitaminC, every other day when i haven't eaten any liver for awhile. On the days i don't take it, or eat liver or oysters, i take a copper supplement -- the two minerals need to be in balance, as do iodine and selenium. I can tell when i have NOT taken enough iron -- i pull more hair out of my brush when i clean it! The "clutter" in my hairbrush is DIRECTLY associated with my iron SUPPLEMENT intake! I obviously do not absorb it from food the way i should.
We can learn a lot from reading online, but it's a two-edged sword! Much of what we find has been blindly copied from other sources -- in fact, some of the ORIGINAL sources are almost impossible to track down. My practice is to try to find rational sources who disagree to some extent so i see both sides of the situation, then i compare those views to my personal experience. Physicians/nurses in practice rank much higher with me than theoreticians, "independent researchers" and those with "plans" to sell! But if MY EXPERIENCE doesn't jibe with others' hypotheses, i don't care how lauded their "authority" or "expert status" is! If phenomena aren't seen in the real world, laboratory results are irrelevant.