“I’ve put on weight”

“I can’t lose the weight around my belly.”

It is a vicious cycle.  A low thyroid function will allow you to put on the belly fat, and the belly fat in turn will encourages low thyroid hormone

Oh my gosh, what chance do I have, I hear you ask???

You have a great opportunity to stop the cycle and here’s how………  but first, I need to explain a couple of things and will keep it as simple as possible, because really, you just want to lose the belly fat, right?

The big player here is Oestrogen.  To make it slightly more complicated, Oestrogen is sub-divided into three types.

E1, E2 and E3.  Well, I guess that was simple enough.

The one that’s causing the problem with the belly fat is E1 (Oestrone).  Fat cells make this stuff by a process called aromatase.   The more fat, the more making of E1.  This is great for menopause (after periods stop in a woman), but if you aren’t there yet, it is not good because you should already making plenty of E2 (Oestrodial) from your ovaries during your monthly cycle.

In this one scenario, two different things happen that stop the thyroid hormone from working

  1. The E1 can bind to the thyroid receptors – therefore blocking thyroid hormone
  2. The belly fat also produces Thyroid-binding globulin – a carrier protein that takes the thyroid hormone around the body, however excess amounts will bind to free thyroid hormones and prevent them from being active

So not only do you ‘feel fat,’ but you feel sluggish because thyroid receptors not able to accept thyroid hormone and you have lost your ‘mojo.’  Add to this scenario you are now producing more Oestrogen because of the production of E1 via the belly fat and the normal amounts of E2 via the ovaries and we are start to move into the subject about Oestrogen dominance.

Oh, my brain is starting to hurt…………

From Oestrogen dominance more things affect the thyroid function

  1. Inactive thyroid hormone, Thyroxine T4 can’t change into the active from Triiodothyronine T3 – which is the hormone you want plenty of!
  2. The production of Reverse T3, (rT3) goes up. Reverse T3 is a mirror image of the active T3 hormone and binds to the same receptor.  It stops that in its’ tracks and makes it inactive.

Normally some Reverse T3 is good, it is the natural way that Thyroid hormone self regulates.  Incidentally this goes way up during stress, so that is why stress kills the thyroid function.

To make it more interesting, it is not just your body that makes these oestrogens, but the environment – man made that is – that is also throwing extra Oestrogens at you on a daily basis and these are called Xeno-Oestrogens. Without being too technical, they are Pesticides, Plastics,  Petroleum products & synthetic hormones (OCP & HRT)

Where is this stuff found? Well, pretty well everywhere and in your food, so while you are living you are being exposed in one form or another, which is not really what you want to hear.

What can you do about it?  Find out where your Oestrogens are.  I strongly recommend a salivary female hormone test for every woman.  The hormones free float in the saliva and are not bound by carrier proteins as in the blood.  It is a simple ‘goobie’ test in one little vial when you get up in the morning and you are done.  It is best to do it on Day 21 for women still having periods and it doesn’t matter what day for women not having periods.

Belly Fat, Oestrogen & Thyroid Hormone Link

A saliva test is a simple and easy way to test your Oestrogens

How do you go about getting the test?  Phone or email me, and I can have one at your doorstep within about three working days.  I use Nutripath Labs.  You can have the test results be available about a week after getting back to the lab.  The rest it easy too, an initial consultation can be over the phone or skype and if you are in Perth, then face to face is always preferable.


  1. Sanesco NCAP Technical Guide (2014) Sanesco International Inc, Asheveille, NC 28804
  2. Suzy Cohen RPh 2014Thyroid Healthy (1st Ed) Dear Pharmacist Inc, USA,
  3. David Brownstein MD 2014 Overcoming Thyroid Disorders (3rdEd) Medical Alternative Press, West Bloomfield, MI 48323
  4. Igor Tabrizian Dr Lecture Notes in Nutritional Medicine, Lecture 5, Introductory Course, NRS Publications Educations Series


Beth Klenner
Beth Klenner
Beth Klenner is a fully qualified Naturopath and owner of Naturally Thyroid with a passion to help people identify and address probable causes for their low functioning Thyroid condition.
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