Sometimes it seems appropriate to amend Murphy's Law to "Everything that can go wrong, will go wrong—and it's probably your thyroid's fault." It may be small, but that butterfly-shaped gland at the base of your throat has a pretty lofty to-do list—like regulating your appetite, energy levels, and even your body temperature. When it's working correctly, we barely even notice it (unless you're the hypochondriac writer of this article), but when it starts to malfunction, the symptoms are varied and hard to ignore.
But before we dive right into all the different things thyroid symptoms can affect, a refresher course is in order: The thyroid is the largest endocrine gland in the body and produces two types of hormones—T3 and T4—that control the rate at which your body burns energy and responds to stress hormones, says R. Mack Harrell, MD, past president of the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists. (Balance your hormones and lose up to 15 pounds in just 3 weeks with this plan!) There are a few ways that this gland can malfunction—two of which are hyperthyroidism (excessive hormone production) and hypothyroidism (low hormone production).
Click through the slideshow for 9 surprising things that your thyroid can affect.
This article was originally published by our partners at Prevention.