The Effects Of An Overactive Metabolism On Heart Health

2012-09-13 | |
Last updated: 2012-09-13

For the hundreds of millions of people who are overweight or obese and must struggle to lose weight, the idea of a metabolism in overdrive might easily be viewed as nothing less than a blessing. Certainly, a more rapid metabolism is highly beneficial in keeping off weight and allowing a person to eat without counting calories. Unfortunately, an unnaturally fast metabolism such as that experienced as a result of an overactive thyroid gland can pose serious health problems.

Because the thyroid gland produces hormones, the consequences of a thyroid gland in overdrive or Hyperthyroidism, are felt over the entire body. These hormones affect the rate at which almost every human cell functions. Amongst the many negative health effects that result from too much thyroid hormone being produced, the most severe health effects are those experienced by the heart.

What Is The Thyroid Gland?

The thyroid is one of the largest hormone producing glands in the body. It is located below the voice box at the front of the neck wrapping part way around the wind pipe. The thyroid gland produces several hormones that perform a number of functions in the body including controlling the rate at which the body uses energy. The hormones also control how fast the body produces many of the proteins that it requires. Additionally, thyroid hormones govern the sensitivity of body tissues to other hormones.

Hyperthyroidism occurs when the rate at which the thyroid produces these hormones is elevated. The result is high levels of thyroid hormones in the blood and throughout the tissues of the body.

How Many People Are Affected By Hyperthyroidism?

Hyperthyroidism is a fairly common condition that affects as much as 1% of the US and Canadian populations and as much as 2% of the UK population. Women are 5 to 10 times more likely to develop the condition than men. Many cases of hyperthyroidism develop in middle age and the elderly suffer the disorder 50% more often than those who are younger. The most common reason that the condition develops is due to the autoimmune disorder called Graves disease. However, a number of different health problems can also lead to Hyperthyroidism and the resulting heart problems.

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Category: Disease Information, Disease Prevention, Health Risks, Medical Research, Medical Treatment

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