Why this story?
The Pituitary and the Thyroid play a pivotal role in keeping us healthy, happy and disease free. However most of us are unaware of their importance. When there is a thyroid dysfunction, all that people worry about are their TSH levels. But there is more to thyroid than just the TSH.
There are signalling molecules also called as hormones made by the Hypothalamus, the Pituitary the Thyroid and other endocrine glands. Then there are certain cofactors that are necessary for the synthesis, transport and conversion of the hormones to active form. Nutrition plays a pivotal role as does the environment. It is not just about TSH.
Looking at TSH levels and deciding if one has a thyroid issue is the equivalent of looking at a person who is running and assuming that he is doing so because he is scared, frightened and being chased by a wild animal!
This is my attempt to convey to a larger audience, the workings of the Thyroid in a story form. My children are home-schooled and this is how I make science interesting for them. Moreover it gives them sufficient grasp on the topic in a manner that it is etched in their memory for ever.
As I started writing this, I did realize as to how challenging it can be; to don the writer's cap and attempt to be one- when all along I have been a narrater and a story teller. I do hope that you will find this story easy to understand.
This story would be presented in three parts
Part 1- The Happy Family. Will help you understand as to how the Pituitary and the Thyroid work and the different players who support them. This is a scenario when everything is going on well.
Part 2: When the Family seems Sad (Hypothyroidism)
Under what circumstances would Das uncle - the Thyroid gland, stop waking up the kids. How would that upset Guru ajju, and how does this affect the family.
You will also be given to understand as to how an external influence (Doctor), who tries to wake up the kids with his calls (Synthetic Thyroid Hormone) would negatively impact the body. We will also explore, as to how this family crisis can be addressed
Part 3: When there is misunderstanding in the Family.
Here we will discuss Autoimmune disorders- that is when, 'the very family members' who have been supporting Das all along, turn against him. We will understand the impact it would have on the body and also ways and means to clear the misunderstanding.
Get acquainted with the Characters:
Family: Prehealing Family, spread across the globe and includes everyone on this beautiful planet. This family also represents the Human Body, the plants, animals, insects, minerals- in short the Earth and every aspect of Nature is a part of this family.
1. Grandfather- Guru is the Pituitary gland
2. His Son, Das is the Thyroid Gland
3. Guru Ajju is a man of few words. He talks to Das only when it is necessary for him to stimulate Das: Guru Ajju talking to Das - Thyroid Stimulating Hormone
4. Das has a big family with 100 trillion cute babies - Cells of the Human Body
5. Das (Thyroid) wakes up every baby of his (Cells), by calling out to them (Hormone) - Thyroid Hormone
6. The kids are looked after by family members- The Environment
7. Active kids are busy moving around and playing - Cellular Activity
8. These free and active kids who are jumping and playing around create energy, some of which can cause damage. e.g playing football in the living room. This excessive energy that can also cause damage - Free Radicals
9. They need to be given attention otherwise they can cause damage.- Free Radical Damage
10. Very active Kids need to be given attention; their acitivity needs to be supervised, just like Free Radicals need to be given an Electron
11. When kids are given the attention they require, the kids are happy. The family members and caretakers who give attention to the kids are just like- Antioxidants. which give electrons to free radicals.
12.By giving electrons to free radicals, the antioxidants in our bodies, ensure that the activities of the cells ( kids) does not cause harm to the body.
13. We all know and many have experienced the consequences of leaving a group of small kids unattended, especially when they are hyper, filled with a lot of energy and have access to a lot of stimulants. They can inadvertently cause damage : Pain, Inflammation, DNA damage and Cancer
14. Let us call the caretakers who give attention the kids as Aunty oxidants.(Antioxidants)
15. When the kids are well looked after, the activity in the family is well monitored and the energy is very positive. This is a happy family and a Healthy body
Do take time some time to get acquainted with the characters and also the technical term that each character stands for. It will help you understand the story better.
Just in case you want to revise, re-read and understand the characters better- Here is a quick recap....:
Extra energy that can cause damage: Free Radicals
Attention given by caretaker: Antioxidants
The damaging Free Radicals in our body that we are scared about are the byproducts of cellular activity. It is but natural, that when kids get very active, there are bound to be issues. It is the energy, which if not controlled will cause the issue. The child does not intend to do harm.
So what the caretaker needs to do is to provide them an environment of attention. (Just as for the free radical it is the antioxidant that gives the much needed electron.)
The activities of a child or a cell can have a negative impact when they are not given the attention and support they deserve.
In chemical terms, the act of wanting an electron desperately makes the chemical an oxidizing agent. On the other hand those chemicals that freely give away an electron when requested are Antioxidants. It is not that they are ANTI ( Against) , but it is just that they give away freely, that gives them the name AntiOxidant.
Some examples of Antioxidants are
1. Vitamin C
2. Vitamin E
3. Carotenes from Carrots, Betacyanins from Beet Root, Lycopene from Tomatoes
These antioxidants play a pivotal role in protecting us from the damage that can be caused by the activity of free radicals that are naturally formed when trillions of cells in our body get busy making us alive !
For now understanding these terms would suffice
Oxidizing agents (Free Radicals), Electrons, and Antioxidants