Wayne Joseph’s Blog

Running with the Big Dog

Maximimize Metabolism with a Healthy Thyroid

Maximize Metabolism with a Healthy Thyroid So how much do you know about the thyroid gland? Some people have never even heard of it. Thyroid health should definitely be on your radar because its primary function is to release hormones that control your metabolic rate. In other words, a healthy thyroid helps your body utilize energy quickly for cellular activities. And that’s what keeps your body – right down to the individual cells – in motion, using energy efficiently throughout the day (and night) to function properly and stay in good health. The Basics The thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland located in the front part of the neck, just below the voice box (larynx). Thyroid activity is stimulated by the pituitary gland, which secretes thyroid stimulating hormone(TSH) to signal the production of thyroxine in the thyroid. There are two main thyroid hormones consisting of two aromatic rings of tyrosine linked together with the addition of iodine at select places: T3 (triiodothyronine) and T4 (tetraiodothyronine). When these hormones are insufficiently produced due to thyroid dysfunction, a condition known as hypothyroidism can occur.When assessing for thyroid function, many doctors will first test TSH levels. As discussed, elevated TSH can be indicative of primary hypothyroidism. Most resources cite 0.4-4.0 mlU/L as normal range. However, many patients express symptoms of hypothyroidism with TSH higher than 2.5 mlU/L. This diagnosis is often referred to as subclinical hypothyroidism. Even in these less severe cases, hypothyroidism can cause many classic symptoms including weight gain, sensitivity to cold, constipation, menstrual problems, fatigue, edema, and dry skin, hair, and nails. Depression is also common in these patients, and many report forgetfulness and difficulty concentrating on Nutritional Factors.

When analyzing thyroid function, three nutrients of concern are iodine, selenium, and the amino acid tyrosine. Remember, thyroxine is synthesized from tyrosine bound to iodine molecules. Selenium acts as a co-factor for enzymes known as deiodinases. These enzymes are the catalysts in the reactions involved in thyroid production and conversion. Patients concerned with thyroid health should work with their doctor to carefully monitor their intake of all three of these essential nutrients.

The most common example of nutrient deficiency causing thyroid disease is iodine deficiency. Prior to the introduction of iodized salt in the 1920s, iodine deficiency was common in the Great Lakes and Appalachian regions of the United States. This region was referred to as the “Goiter Belt” at that time due to the characteristic enlarged thyroid (goiter) seen in people with iodine deficiency.

It is estimated that nearly 40 percent of the world’s population is at risk for iodine deficiency, and outside of the United States, this remains the leading cause of impaired thyroid activity and mental retardation. Even here in the U.S., despite the prevalent use of iodized salt in our food supply, undiagnosed iodine deficiency remains a cause of hypothyroidism. While the first National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES I), conducted from 1971-1974, found that 2.6 percent of U.S. citizens suffered from iodine deficiency, NHANES III [conducted from 1988-1994] saw that percentage rise considerably, up to 11.7 percent suffering from deficiency.

If you find yourself expressing symptoms of low thyroid activity, talk to your doctor, who may run tests to check your TSH and T3/T4 levels. And keep in mind that while less common than hypothyroidism, you can also experience hyperthyroidism: an overactive thyroid that releases too much hormones instead of too little. Symptoms of hyperthyroidism can include weight loss, increased appetite, nervousness, restlessness, weakness, itching, nausea and vomiting, among other unpleasantries.

June 18, 2011 Posted by | Health and Fitness | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Nahale’s Lifestyle Changes Nets 140 pound weight loss

Charles Nahale

One of the biggest health issue facing Americans today is that of obesity.  Many of us are blessed with abundance and it is easy to overindulge and our busy schedules allow us to make excuses not to exercise.

As we age our metabolism slows and added pounds begin to stick to our bodies as we get larger and larger.

For Charlie Nahale the mixture of added job responsibilities and family demands coupled with his love for food began to show within a few years as he went from 235 pounds to 350 pounds.

“My health issues began many years ago when I gave up sports and began coaching,” Nahale said.  “My huge appetite continued, but my exercise regiment diminished.”

Nahale grew up in Kona, on a coffee farm in Captain Cook, the eldest of seven children.

“Growing up on a farm with a large family required a lot of cooperation and shared responsibilities,” he said.

The Nahale family grew coffee and bananas and raised cows, pigs, rabbits, ducks and chickens to supplement their income.

“It took a lot of negotiating and help from my brothers and sisters to free up some time for me so that I could play sports,” Nahale said.

During his youth Nahale played on the Parks & Recreation Pirates Basketball team and in high school play junior varsity basketball for Coach George Yoshida.

“I ran track and did the high jump, shot put, discus and the long distance relay races,” he said.

By 9th grade Nahale began lifting weights so that he could play football and ended up on the Wildcat team for all four years.

“In 1971, during my senior year, we (Konawaena) won our first Big Island Interscholastic Federation Football Championship,” he said.

Nahale continued his education by enrolling at Hawaii Community College in the Police Science Program.

“I wanted to become a Police Officer for two years so that I could qualify for a Fish and Game Warden position and make that my career,” Nahale said.

Throughout his early career Nahale stayed active and in great shape as he participated in a variety of sports programs and even played a few years of Semi-Pro Football.

In 1981 his dream came through as he accepted a position with the State Department of Conservation Enforcement Division as a Conservation Officer.

“I gave up playing sports and dedicated my time to coaching my sons, baseball and basketball teams,” Nahale said.

In 1984 Nahale was approached by members in the community asking for help in reorganizing the Kona Marlins Pop Warner Football Association.  With the help of several key members of the community they managed to get the Marlins Pop Warner football team off and running.

Nahale served as the President of the Kona Marlins Association until he was elected Vice President of the Big Island Pop Warner Conference in 1989 and the following year found himself as League President which he continues to serve in today.

Nahale retired as a Conservation Officer in 2008 and found that his years of excess and lack of exercise had led to him tipping the scales at 450 pounds with the diagnoses of borderline high blood pressure, morbid obesity and arthritis in his right hip.

“I had tried many weight loss programs and I seemed to gain back the weight I lost and then some,” he said.  “Being a musician and coming from a large family I am constantly surrounded by an abundance of delicious food.  I felt helpless, without the willpower to stick to a diet.”

Nahale ‘s weight became a burden and he had pain in his back and in his legs.

“I couldn’t walk much without resting and getting off my feet,” he said.  “I was limited in places I could go because of my size so I decided that I needed to get surgical help to address my weight and health issues.”

Nahale opted to get a gastric bypass and had three-fourths of his stomach removed.

“I had the procedure done this past May and have lost over 140 pounds as I continue to lose weight,” he said.  “My blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar levels have returned to normal and I plan to have a hip replacement surgery in a few months so that I can return to some form of physical exercise in my quest for a healthier and more fulfilling life.”

For Nahale life had gotten so busy that he was sidetracked from staying active and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.  There are many people just like Charlie Nahale who feel helpless and trapped with health and weight issues.

“Life gets so busy and everyday zips by as we are working and have bills to pay, with family needs to tend to,” Nahale said.  “I chose Medical Intervention because of my failed attempts to lose my weight on my own and my increasing health issues.”

Nahale recognized that he had a serious health issue and did something to help conquer his growing fears.

“My health is getting back on track and I feel great and thankful each and every day,” he said.  “I hope to inspire others who are faced with these same issues to seek medical help or speak to someone who has gone through the same trials.”

January 24, 2011 Posted by | Health and Fitness | , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Sitting Less & Moving More Leads to Longer Life

Movement is key to Longevity

Study finds that sitting less may lead to Longevity

A study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology suggests people who spend more time sitting (specifically, more than six hours a day) during leisure time have an increased risk of premature death compared to those who sit for three hours or less, and the results are independent of exercise

When you sit for prolonged periods of time, usually with little or no movement, it negatively affects circulation, metabolism, resting blood pressure and cholesterol, among other things. And more time sitting, especially in front of the TV, computer, etc., often contributes to excessive snacking -all too often the unhealthy variety – which can lead to obesity and weight-related disorders such as diabetes.

Sit less and move more is a great message to store in your memory bank and recall on a daily basis. Anytime you start to feel stuck to your chair, peel yourself away and add a little motion (and a few years) to your life. Talk to your doctor about the health dangers associated with prolonged sitting (especially its impact on the spine and posture) and how you can sit less and live longer.

 So all you runners, walkers and joggers, just keep doing it and exceed the average American Life Span.  Don’t forget to add a healthy diet to the mix. 

October 15, 2010 Posted by | Health and Fitness | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Small Weight Increases can affect Feet

Even Small Increases in Weight Can Take Toll on Feet: NJ Podiatrist

    Even small amounts of excess weight — common in a country where two-thirds of adults and one-third of kids are overweight or obese — can take a toll on feet. “Overweight people are going to get increased swelling especially with the heat, arthritic changes because of the joints. Obesity causes a lot of ailments,” says Dr. Scott Warren of the Academy Podiatry Associates in Mount Ephraim, NJ.

   The bottom line, according to Warrren, “. . . If people went out and walked for 30 minutes a few times a week and ate better, they would be better off. Obesity leads to other things. It puts stress on the body. From a biomechanical standpoint, it’s our metabolism. People who are sedentary can’t lose weight because their metabolism doesn’t stay up.”

July 8, 2010 Posted by | Health and Fitness | , , , , | Leave a comment