Treating Hyperthyroidism with Herbs

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△Hyperthyroidism patients usually show various symptoms caused by excessive internal heat and yin deficiency due to the heat. imageⓒAdobeStock_Peakstock

The formulas should be able to reduce excessive heat and nourish yin.

By Winston Lee L. Ac, Ph.D., KMD

Hyperthyroidism is like your thyroid hitting the gas pedal too hard, leading to a body in overdrive. Often rooted in an overactive thyroid gland. Traditional treatment roads typically lead to medications, such as Methimazole, aimed at dialing back the thyroid’s activity. But the landscape is changing, with growing interest in holistic paths like herbal remedies. This shift recognizes the real-life struggles of patients who often juggle side effects and search for more balanced solutions.

Last August, a high school boy visited with his mother. He was diagnosed with hyperthyroidism with allergic reactions on his skin and nose. Also, he had trouble sleeping and felt tired, and he was losing weight, had trouble concentrating when studying, and had significant hair loss. It was a typical case of hyperthyroidism. He was diagnosed last year and has been taking medication prescribed by his PCP since then, but in the past month, his symptoms have become more severe due to increased academic stress.

His metabolism was supposed to go up only when you’re excited or exercising, but it’s too high, as always. This was why he had trouble sleeping and concentrating. Due to heat and anger, the body’s water is easily drained and consumed, causing allergies on the skin and nose and hair loss due to lack of blood supply at the roots.

The basic treatment for those symptoms should be to reduce the heat and anger through herbal formula. At the same time, you need to replenish the total water deficiency by supplying the blood.

The prescription was as follows. I added Shu Di Huang, Mai Men Dong, 20 grams per unit to ensure sufficient blood circulation, and Gan Cao, 15 grams to relieve muscle tension. Ban Xia and Huo Ma Ren were added at 10-12 grams to clear excess phlegm and heat. Ren Shen added a relatively small amount of 5 grams to replenish qi.

The patient took herbal medicine for two weeks in early August, and when I checked in with him by phone a week later, he said his overall symptoms had already improved by more than 30%. When he returned in early September, his overall symptoms had improved by 50%. So, I adjusted the prescription slightly and gave him the herbs again. The student and her mother were very happy because he was sleeping better and feeling less tired, which allowed him to concentrate better on her schoolwork, which was the most important thing for him.