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Old 12-03-2008, 08:32 AM   #1
Leah VanHoose
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Thyroid disease and Alopecia

Apparently my body has decided attacking itself is the thing to do. After loosing all of the hair on my entire body I am still at a loss as to why this is happening to me.

Last year my hair started falling out, in clumps. I noticed this around July. I finally went to my Dr. in October. He by sight told me I had Alopecia, ran some blood tests, ultrasound of my thyroid, sent me to a dermatologist. Derm said, by sight, I had Alopecia and proceeded to inject steroids in to my head. That only happened once, hair is NOT that important to me to go through that monthly!!! Results came back and nothing was followed up on.

Little history. I trained for and ran my first Marathon January of last year. Feb I had my tubes tied and went off of Depo-provera(injectable birth control) after 14 yrs of use. July stared crossfit(same time I noticed hair loss)

Present. Bald as a freakin bat, autoimmune thyroid disorder. I am currently going to a naturopath in conjunction with a nurse practioner who have actually followed up on my test results(thyroid disorder showed last year!)

I guess what I am asking is: Do you think my autoimmune problems(Alopecia is also an autoimmune disorder) could have been brought on by inflamation from endurance training and or the intensity of crossfit?

Any comments or ideas to help bring my body back to balance would be great. i am now on a gluten free diet an going to go on the zone once I can get my **** straight and commit to it
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Old 12-03-2008, 10:32 AM   #2
Ben Kaminski
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Re: Thyroid disease and Alopecia

Autoimmune diseases can lie dormant in your genes for years, until they are triggered to manifest, usually by stress in some form. Once triggered they may or may not ever go dormant again, my guess is that they usually remain for life.

Probiotics and other natural immunoregulators can help or hurt - they can help by regulating the immune system, bringing it into a strong balanced state. On the other hand, the default action of your immune system is to attack your body, so how strong do you want it to be? On the other hand pharmaceutical immunosuppressants have their own bad effects, and personally I avoid them.

It is possible that the stress of physical activity, possibly coupled with other stressors, could have triggered the onset of this immune system malfunction. On the other hand, it could be other stressors completely and coincidental to your increased physical activity.

Good luck!
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Old 12-03-2008, 10:47 AM   #3
Tirzah Harper
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Re: Thyroid disease and Alopecia

Well, in my own personal experience, starting to really get into CrossFit was too much stress for me. It kicked me over the edge (after a couple years of personal stress) with that added metcon physical stress into having adrenal issues. I was a tense wreck.

I took a few months off to do hybrid programming and Starting Strength, but even that was too much to really recover - any little extra and I was back feeling the adrenal fatigue again.

I've taken two months off totally so far, just doing one ballet class a week and yoga occasionally, and I'm finally starting to miss exercise A LOT, to the point where I'm adding in stuff here and there during my day. So far so good, and I'm hoping to be able to make a CF comeback in the spring.

So...that's not thyroid issues, but it is a case of CF being the straw that broke the camel's back. Hope it helps.
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Old 12-03-2008, 01:04 PM   #4
Leah VanHoose
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Re: Thyroid disease and Alopecia

Thanks for the info guys. Luckily my only symptoms are being as bald as my avatar! I actually feel better physically than I have ever felt in my life. This is why I think i am having such a hard time with all of this. I feel Healthy, I should look healthy. I can't tell you how many people have asked me how my cancer treatments are going!! I'm just going to keep up nutrionally sound as best i can and see what happens.
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Old 12-03-2008, 02:42 PM   #5
Marco Pineda
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Re: Thyroid disease and Alopecia

Slightly different experience. I developed Graves disease (wfs) or hyperthyroidism 10 years ago just before I got married. It followed after being very badly sick. My brother, who had the same thing actually diagnosed me. My doctor confirmed it and I was on methimazole for three or four years.

Although the doctor(s) doubts a connection, my remission seems to coincide with my periods of high intensity workout. I can't say "Crossfit cured my Graves" because I have only been doing it since June. But I did start training hard in one way or another about 4 or 5 years ago and my symptoms have returned only once so far.

Maybe I'm just part of the lucky 50% of Graves sufferers that goes into remission, my brother had to get radioiodine treatment. I think the working out has helped my endocrine system stay sane. FWIW.

Good luck
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Old 12-03-2008, 03:41 PM   #6
Alicia Michel
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Re: Thyroid disease and Alopecia

Hey Leah, Garrett Smith on PM forums (http://www.performancemenu.com/forum/index.php WFS) may have some good suggestions. He's a Naturopathic Physician. I think he posts here as well but not as often?
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Old 12-04-2008, 12:55 PM   #7
Leah VanHoose
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Re: Thyroid disease and Alopecia

Thanks Alicia. Another great site.
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