Why your Thyroid Medication may not be Working for You!

Why Your Thyroid Medication May Not be Working for You!

Are you taking Synthroid or Tirosint (levothyroxine)? Levothyroxine is the thyroid hormone T4. Did you know that the most active thyroid hormone in your body is T3. T3 is converted from T4 in the liver, kidneys and muscles. This conversion requires an enzyme called 

5’deiodinase, and the nutrients selenium, zinc, copper, vitamins A, B2, B3, B6,and C. If you are not converting your natural T4 or T4 medication to T3 you may not be getting enough circulating thyroid hormone. Factors that reduce conversion and will interfere with the efficacy of your thyroid medication include:

  • Stress
  • Environmental toxins (plastics and heavy metals)
  • Inadequate protein intake
  • High carbohydrate diet
  • Elevated cortisol 
  • Chronic illness
  • Decreased kidney or liver function
  • Inflammation
  • Medications (Birth control pills, Propanolol, Premarin….) 
  • Nutrient deficiencies
    • Iodine (high in Seaweed)
    • Iron (high red meat, mushrooms, kale)
    • Selenium (high in brazil nuts)
    • Zinc (high in shellfish)
    • Vitamins A, B2, B6, B12

Dr.E finds her patients feel much better one a T4/T3 combination treatment or a Natural thyroid alternative such as Nature-Throid or WP Thyroid. Ask your doctor to test your Free T3 levels, thehealthy range is 3.0-3.4ng/L and deficiency below 2.4ng/L. If you suspect your thyroid medication is not working for you ask Dr.Escobedo to evaluate your labs. 

Healthy Snack Ideas for Kids

Choose snacks that are free of artificial food colorings, dyes, sweeteners, ones that are not genetically modified, and are low in sugar. The best snacks are tasty, balanced, and accessible. Balanced snacks are ones that combine fruit and or vegetables with proteins, fiber and fats. Such as apples and cheese, nuts and fruit, veggies and hummus. Choose whole fruit over fruit juice. Soda is not an acceptable snack for kids, ever. 

  • Fruit kebabs. Buy some kebab skewers and create colorful strawberry, pineapple, grape, kiwi, and apple kebabs which kids can grab and go.  Kids have fun making them, as well.
  • Frozen grapes. They have the consistency of mini-popsicles, yet no added sugar and plenty of flavonoids.
  • Ants on a log. Take celery sticks and smear them with almond butter and sprinkle with a line of raisins or dried cranberries.
  • Raw nuts & dried fruit: almonds, pecans, walnuts, cashews with unsweetened dried apricots, peaches, mangos, dates, or apples. Nuts, especially walnuts, are rich in omega-3 fatty acids.
  • Seeds. Seeds are a rich source of vitamin E and some, like pumpkin seeds, have omega-3 fatty acids. Roast seeds yourself for extra crunch and less refined salt. 200F for approx. 7 minutes.
  • Veggies and dip. There is no excuse for not having fresh vegetables on hand.  Buy pre-chopped, pre-washed, bagged veggies if necessary.  Any trans-fat free dip is fine. Children need high quality fat for neurological development, and fat helps you absorb many nutrients from vegetables. Carrots and hummus are a delicious combination. Hummus is available in most grocery stores and is rich in protein, or try carrots dipped in nut butter or a tablespoon of fresh avocado.
  • Rainbow melons. Slice honeydew, cantaloupe, and watermelon to make a candy-colored natural treat.
  • Nut butter (almond & hazelnut butters) on pears or apples.
  • Apple or pear slices with cheese.
  • Root fries.  Slice yams, sweet potatoes, rutabagas, beets, parsnips into wedges, place them in a glass baking dish, mix with extra virgin olive or a few dollops of coconut oil, spice with salt, pepper, rosemary, dill, etc. and bake at 375F for 45 minutes, or until crisp but not burnt.
  • Mix a bowlful of seasonal berries, including blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries.  Whip up some heavy whipping cream, add a splash of vanilla and 100% maple syrup.  Serve a bowl of berries with a scoop of the homemade whip cream for a delightful treat.
  • Roll ups. Layer thinly sliced turkey breast (ideally nitrate free), spinach leaves, mayonnaise (ideally soybean oil free) on a sprouted grain or whole grain tortilla.  Roll up and slice into tasty disks.  Roll ups also work with tuna salad, refried beans, and spreads such as hummus.
  • Fruit leathers. A much wiser choice than the exceedingly popular fruit snacks and fruit roll-ups without the added sugar.  Available in bulk quantities at Costco. Beware the “fruit juice” sweetened fruit snacks, if you read the label you will see that there is still a lot of sugar in these—another misleading marketing tool.
  • A spoonful of avocado, goat cheese, or cottage cheese with salt & pepper or just plain.
  • Brown rice cakes with nut butter and banana slices onto.
  • Whole plain greek yogurt with fresh squeezed lime. Even makes a good substitute for sour cream.
  • Raw energy balls
  • Leftovers.

For more healthy recipe ideas see The Whole Life Nutrition website. 

5 things you can do to survive the cold & flu season

Cold and flu season is approaching, but don’t fret, there are lots of natural ways to stay healthy this year. The sooner you nip that sniffle in the butt the better. Here are 5 simple things you an the family can do to prevent the cold and flu season getting the best of you!

1. Sleep! Ever notice how after a long weekend of debauchery with your friends you get sick. The reason for this is we use sleep to for repair.  When we deprive ourselves of that vital restorative time, our immune system can get tired and we fall sick easily.  If you feel yourself starting to get sick the best thing you can do is go to bed early and get a good 8-10hrs of sleep.  

2.  Garlic. Garlic is nature’s anti-biotic, anti-fungal, and immune booster! But make note: to get the most of garlic’s natural healing properties you need to prepare it properly.  Chop up about 2 cloves of garlic, let sit for 5 minutes, this activates the allicin or medicinal constituent in garlic, then enjoy it raw or mostly raw. I like to sprinkle the raw garlic on a piece of toast with olive oil and salt.  Enjoy this immune boosting garlic bread, when you first feel a cold or flu coming on to prevent it from taking hold. Or once you are sick have up to 4-5 cloves per day, but don’t over do it if you are on blood thinners like warfarin.  

3.  Vitamin C.  Vitamin C has been shown to shorten the duration and severity of cold and flu symptoms.  It has also been shown to boost the immune system to so you have a fighting chance! It’s good to take a maintenance dose of vitamin C throughout the cold and flu season, about 500-1000mg per day for an adult. Or 1000-2000mg if you need a boost while you’re sick.  Chose a vitamin C derived from a whole food source, with an equal amount of citrus bioflavonoids to citric acid, and one without a bunch of fillers and binders.    

4. Echinacea. Echinacea is an immune booster and has been shown to be especially helpful in prevention of upper respiratory tract infections (ie. Bronchitis).  You will benefit most from echinacea if you use it as soon as you feel that tickle in your throat or upon the first sign of impending flu doom!  Echinacea comes in three popular forms: E. purpurea, E. angustifolia, and E. pallida.  When choosing your liquid tincture of echinacea chose one with a mix of E. purpura whole plant, and E. angustifolia and E. pallida root for the best immune boosting effects. Echinacea is best taken short term (12 days or less) and at the onset symptoms.  

5. Avoid sugar. Sugar suppresses the immune system and will not serve you if you are trying to fight off the cold and flu.  This includes ingredients in many cold and flu medications on the market. Read ingredients and be picky about what you choose to nourish your body with.  

Good health to you and your family this season! 

Is Your Thyroid Slowing you Down?

Your thyroid is one of the largest glands in your body, and is located just over your windpipe at the base of your throat. The thyroid produces thyroid hormone T3 and T4, these hormones increase the metabolic activity of your cells. The function of your thyroid includes:

  • Boosts metabolic activity of cells causing fat and carbohydrates to be burned for energy.
  • Decreases body weight.
  • Decreases cholesterol and triglycerides preventing atherosclerosis.
  • Increases basal body temperature and blood flow so you feel warm.
  • Helps secrete digestive enzymes so you can break down your food and assimilate nutrients properly.
  • Helps your muscles to contract and relax normally.

As you can see having a healthy balanced thyroid is an important part of good health and managing a healthy weight.  Subclinical hypothyroid is chronically under diagnosed in the traditional medical system. The best way to know if your thyroid is working at its best, is to to have a full thyroid workup: Total T3 and T4, free T3 and T4, TSH, reverse T3, and TPOs all checked my your healthcare provider.  The problem is most doctors will only check your TSH, which doesn’t give us a complete picture of your thyroid health.  The following quiz can give you some clues to find out if your thyroid is slowing you down (click NEXT to start): 

How is your Thyroid?

To begin the quiz, click the Next button below.

Choose the most relevant answers that apply to you currently.

Cold hands and feet?
Dry hair and brittle nails?
Aversion to cold?
Dry skin?
Feeling tired most of the day?
Difficulty losing weight or gains weight easily?
Loss of the outer one-third of eyebrows?
Constipation or bowel movements less than once per day?
Low mood or depression?
Taking antidepressants don't seem to improve your mood?
Family history or low thyroid?

How is your Thyroid?

To begin the quiz, click the Next button below.

Choose the most relevant answers that apply to you currently.

Cold hands and feet?
Dry hair and brittle nails?
Aversion to cold?
Dry skin?
Feeling tired most of the day?
Difficulty losing weight or gains weight easily?
Loss of the outer one-third of eyebrows?
Constipation or bowel movements less than once per day?
Low mood or depression?
Taking antidepressants don't seem to improve your mood?
Family history or low thyroid?

You can also try this home test:

Take your axillary (armpit) temperature three mornings in a row before getting out of bed or doing anything. Menstruating women take your temperature on day 3,4, and 5 of your menstrual cycle.  Men and postmenopausal women can take your basal body temperature anytime of the month. A basal body temperature between 97.6-98.6F is normal, below 97.6F could indicate low thyroid function. 

Healthy foods for your thyroid:

  • Red meat, spinach, mushrooms, and sea vegetables provides the body with iron which is needed to convert the amino acid phenylalanine to tyrosine a building block for thyroid hormones.  Sea vegetables, organic yogurt, grass fed cow’s milk, and eggs are an excellent source of iodine, the thyroid uses iodine to build thyroid hormone.
  • A targeted supplement protocol designed by your Naturopathic Doctor can significantly improve your thyroid and help maintain a healthy metabolism.

Feel the Strength of Balanced Hormones

Seamless menopause & menstrual cycles, balanced thyroid & blood sugar. Feel energized and empowered with balanced hormones.

Find out if your hormones are balanced:

How is your Progesterone? Quiz

Find out if your progesterone is our of balance. Progesterone is an important hormone in regulating your menstrual cycle, maintaining pregnancy, balancing your mood, and promoting a healthy night's sleep.

To begin the quiz, click on the Next button below.

Do you have difficulty sleeping?

Are you anxious or nervous?

Are you irritable or easily agitated?

Have you ever been diagnosed with Endometriosis or have pain with intercourse?

Tender swollen breast before menstrual period?

Irritable and more emotional before menstrual period?

Heavy menstrual periods?

Do you experience painful menstrual cramps?

Abdominal bloating before menstrual period?

History of miscarrages?


Blood clots during menstrual period?

Polycystic ovaries, fibroid and/or fibrocystic breasts?

Irregular menstruation?


How is your Estrogen? (Part 2) Quiz

To begin the quiz, click the Next button below.

Find out if your estrogen is high, or high relative to your progesterone levels. Choose the answers that best describe you currently.

Heavy menstrual bleeding?
Weight gain around hips and thighs?
Uterine fibroids?

Feeling irritable and sad?
Mood swings?
Painful menstrual cramps?
Breast swelling and tenderness?
Water retention?
Depression, low mood, weepy and more emotional before menstrual period?


How is your Estrogen? (Part 1) Quiz

Chose the most relevant answer for you currently. Begin the quiz by clicking the Next button below.

1) Hot flashes and night sweats?
2) Poor memory and forgetfullness?
3) Dribbling of urine with coughing or sneezing?
4) Dry irritated eyes?
5) Low mood and/or depression?
6) Thin wrinkles around eyes and lips?
7) Decreased breast firmness?
8) How is your sex drive?

9) Irregular menstrual cycles?

10) Light menstrual flow?
11) Painful intercourse due to vaginal dryness?
12) Easily broken bones?
13) Do you have osteoporosis or osteopenia?

How is your Thyroid?

To begin the quiz, click the Next button below.

Choose the most relevant answers that apply to you currently.

Cold hands and feet?
Dry hair and brittle nails?
Aversion to cold?
Dry skin?
Feeling tired most of the day?
Difficulty losing weight or gains weight easily?
Loss of the outer one-third of eyebrows?
Constipation or bowel movements less than once per day?
Low mood or depression?
Taking antidepressants don't seem to improve your mood?
Family history or low thyroid?


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Discover the Freedom of Healthy Digestion

The digestive tract is central to optimal health, find out how vital you can feel with healthy digestion.

When you think of your digestive tract you probably think of all the tubes that move food from your mouth to the toilet.  Your liver, gallbladder, and pancreas all play important roles in production, and storage of digestive enzymes, bile, and elimination of toxins from your blood into your stool.  Did you ever consider your skin a part of your digestive tract?! Your digestive tract is just an extension of your skin, a barrier between the outside world and your delicate insides.  Your digestive tract sanitizes and selectively absorbs nutrients from your food. A large amount of your immune system is in your digestive tract interacting with millions of bacteria.  Not only does your digestion absorb all the nutrients that become the building blocks for everything in the human body, but it stores a large amount of serotonin! Serotonin is your happy hormone. As you can see having a healthy digestive tract is central to having healthy skin, immune system, a balance mood, and a healthy body.

Common symptoms and conditions related to an unhealthy digestion:


Healing the Gut: Three important steps to healthy digestion.

  1. Remove: remove underlying inflammatory factors
    1. Problem foods
    2. Parasitic infection
    3. Candida overgrowth
    4. Stress and disordered eating habits
    5. Drugs/medications
  2. Heal the gut lining
    1. Anti-oxidants
    2. Soothing herbs (Aloe vera)
    3. Healing nutrients (Glutamine)
  3. Restore:
    1. Healthy stomach acid levels
    2. Healthy flora (Probiotics)
    3. Digestive enzymes/bile production

Dr.Escobedo has lots of success identifying the underlying cause of digestive complaints using specialties testing such as:

  • Food sensitivities testing: discover exactly what foods are causing inflammation in your digestive tract.
  • Comprehensive Stool Analysis: this test allows us uncover exactly what your flora is doing; good bacteria, commensal bacteria, parasitic infections or yeast overgrowth. And how well you are digesting your food.
  • Specialty testing along with an in depth history of your condition allows us to get your digestion back to health quickly and effectively.

If you suspect your digestion need improvement book your free 15 minute phone consult with Dr. Escobedo today!