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Is It Safe To Use Triphala For Constipation?

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Posted on Tue, 23 Dec 2014
Question: Hello. First can you tell me if Triphala is safe to use for constipation? Second, would you recommend Nature's Dessicated Thyroid for Hypothyroidism? What lifestyle or dietary changes would you recommend to boost thyroid health? Thanks XXXXXXX
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Answered by Dr. Dr.Albana Sejdini (5 hours later)
Brief Answer:
Following answers to your queries...

Detailed Answer:
Hi XXXXXXX

I have gone through your medical history carefully and understood your concerns. Before answering to your queries, please let me tell you that when you want to use something, you should look inside its ingredients and what benefits you get from them.

1. Specifically, Triphala is a combination of 3 powdered XXXXXXX herbs including:

- Amalaki = XXXXXXX gooseberry known for mild laxative properties and to strengthen immunity

- Haritaki = rich in chemicals with great laxative function apart rejuvinating properties

- Bibhitaki = rich in chemical that help digestion and ease bowel movements.

Altogether, these 3 powdered plants can be used to ease bowel movements when having constipation.

2. Nature's desiccated thyroid is a combination of hormones, normally produced by thyroid gland. It is used when thyroid does not produce these hormones on its own, including hypothyroidism.

Before advising on NDT, I need to know if the diagnosis is hypothyroidism is truly determined. Thyroid function test and antibodies can be used as determinative parameters.

As NDT is a combination of hormones, doctors would evaluate the current health problems of the patients before prescribing it. It contains T3 and T4 in various doses, which is not really necessary as long as our body can convert t4 to t3 according to peripheral needs.

3. With regards to lifestyle/dietary changes to boost thyroid health, I'd suggest as following:
- avoid foods that can interfere with thyroid function (including those of brassica family=cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, etc.). gluten rich foods, soy, etc.
- eat more foods that contain the ingredients to boost thyroid health: zinc, vit.B group, selenium, iron, etc.
- the way you eat foods matters: eating sit and slowing by enjoying foods can also help
- positive thinking, stress relieving techniques, exercise, etc. can also help

Hope it answered to your queries!
Dr.Albana

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Dr.Albana Sejdini (6 hours later)
Thanks Dr Albana Sejdini

Your information is good. I need to find another doctor who will authorise T3 and T4 tests and give their estimation. I don't know if lab tests can determine whether body can convert T4 into T3. Is there a test for this?

As I mentioned my TSH has twice recorded levels close to 4.0 which seems to me a clear indication that there is a problem.

What is the range for TSH which YOU as a practitioner, would consider indicates HEALTHY thyroid function?

Also how much does pollution and environmental toxicity affect thyroid? I moved one year ago from a rural town to the city, inner city, where the air is polluted. Also does air conditioning affect thyroid function?

Thanks. Hope you can answer these questions
XXXXXXX
doctor
Answered by Dr. Dr.Albana Sejdini (5 hours later)
Brief Answer:
Following answers to your follow up queries...

Detailed Answer:
Hi back XXXXXXX

Thank you for your follow up queries. I will try my best to answer your questions:

1. The doctor specialized in endocrine/metabolic diseases is called "Endocrinologist". He/she can follow up with your thyroid problems. You family doctor can also authorize to run specific tests to evaluate your thyroid function after evaluating your actual clinical symptoms.

2. From what you describing, you have already done thyroid function test which is the golden standard to understand the function of your thyroid.

Normal range for TSH varies from 0.4 to 4.0 mIU/L. However, different laboratories have different reference ranges, that's why I need to have the full reports and compare the results with reference range of your lab for a better judgement.

3. You are reporting that your TSH level has been close to 4.0 which is considered normal level and a healthy thyroid function. Usually, abnormal levels are considered especially those beyond 10 mIU/L and highly suggestive for hypothyroidism.

So, once again, if your TSH level is almost 4.0, it is not a cause for concern and not a clear indication for any thyroid problem.

Unless, you have been suffering of thyroiditis or/and have been taking thyroid medications previously. In such case, there is a different discussion to make.

4. When you run thyroid function test, it includes measuring of 3 hormones:
- TSH = produced from pituitary gland that can stimulate thyroid gland
- T4 = the hormone produced by thyroid
- T3 = the potent thyroid hormone which is obtained in the peripheral cells due to conversion of T4.

So, by analyzing the level of T3, we can realize if the thyroid hormone is well-functioning even in the periphery.

Please bare in mind that medications you take and other diseases or conditions you might have, can also affect the tests results.

5. Environmental pollution does influence not only thyroid function, but, all body organs and cells too. However, studies are inconclusive regarding the mechanisms of damages specifically for thyroid.

However, some of the research as indicating possible inflammation of thyroid gland (thyroiditis) associated with low thyroid function when exposed to heavy metals especially for long periods.

Unborn babies are more susceptible to such exposure as they are under development.

6. With regards to air-conditioning, it does not affect thyroid function (no such mechanism exist). However, the truth is that research have concluded that patients might have thyroid problems for many years, but, they are not symptomatic due to changes in lifestyle.

For example, there are patients with increased thyroid function (e.g. Grave's disease), they cannot tolerate hot (especially during summer). The use of air-conditioning is alleviating their symptoms.

Hope it answered to your queries!
Dr.Albana

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Answered by
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Dr. Dr.Albana Sejdini

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :2006

Answered : 7212 Questions

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Is It Safe To Use Triphala For Constipation?

Brief Answer: Following answers to your queries... Detailed Answer: Hi XXXXXXX I have gone through your medical history carefully and understood your concerns. Before answering to your queries, please let me tell you that when you want to use something, you should look inside its ingredients and what benefits you get from them. 1. Specifically, Triphala is a combination of 3 powdered XXXXXXX herbs including: - Amalaki = XXXXXXX gooseberry known for mild laxative properties and to strengthen immunity - Haritaki = rich in chemicals with great laxative function apart rejuvinating properties - Bibhitaki = rich in chemical that help digestion and ease bowel movements. Altogether, these 3 powdered plants can be used to ease bowel movements when having constipation. 2. Nature's desiccated thyroid is a combination of hormones, normally produced by thyroid gland. It is used when thyroid does not produce these hormones on its own, including hypothyroidism. Before advising on NDT, I need to know if the diagnosis is hypothyroidism is truly determined. Thyroid function test and antibodies can be used as determinative parameters. As NDT is a combination of hormones, doctors would evaluate the current health problems of the patients before prescribing it. It contains T3 and T4 in various doses, which is not really necessary as long as our body can convert t4 to t3 according to peripheral needs. 3. With regards to lifestyle/dietary changes to boost thyroid health, I'd suggest as following: - avoid foods that can interfere with thyroid function (including those of brassica family=cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, etc.). gluten rich foods, soy, etc. - eat more foods that contain the ingredients to boost thyroid health: zinc, vit.B group, selenium, iron, etc. - the way you eat foods matters: eating sit and slowing by enjoying foods can also help - positive thinking, stress relieving techniques, exercise, etc. can also help Hope it answered to your queries! Dr.Albana