Meet the Thyroid// Thyroid School, Issue 1

Ah, the thyroid. Such a little gland with such a big impact on our bodies! The thyroid sits at the base of the neck and produces thyroid hormones that play a crucial role in the regulation of metabolism (plus several other metabolic processes… don’t worry, we’ll get there!). Thyroid hormones are involved in every single cell in the body. For as important as it is, the thyroid sure can be temperamental, huh?

So why is thyroid disease so common?

I’m so glad you asked!

Let’s begin with a basic overview of the thyroid to understand how it works so that we can further dissect why it became dysregulated in the first place.

Meet Your Thyroid— the queen bee of your bod.

(Pssst…“sciency” stuff ahead… beware!)

She is small, but she sure is mighty— and if you have thyroid issues you know this first hand. The little thyroid of yours is busy doing a lot, including masterminding your metabolism, regulating your sleep/wake cycle, puppeteering your sex hormones, controlling your heart rate and muscle contractions, regulating your menstrual cycle, body temperature, and even your immune system. With this lofty list, it’s easy to see why “just having hypothyroidism” isn’t just having hypothyroidism!

Fun fact: thyroid hormone is the ONLY hormone directly involved in EVERY. SINGLE CELL. It’s a pretty big deal, eh?


The thyroid gland sits on the base of the neck in front of the trachea and is shaped like a butterfly. It produces hormones that are necessary to the body to maintain metabolism and support normal hormonal fluctuations.  Thyroid hormones include: thyroxine (T4), triiodothyronine (T3), T2, T1, and Reverse T3.  


The thyroid takes iodine that we get from foods and combines it with an amino acid, tyrosine, to make thyroid hormones.  These hormones control our metabolism, growth, repair, and general development in the body.

Next post covers: THE starting point of thyroid hormone production (spoiler: it’s NOT the thyroid!)

Until next time,


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Disclaimer: Please note that “Thyroid School” emails from Chews Food Wisely, LLC (and Nicole Fennell, RD) are not intended to create any physician-patient relationship or supplant any in-person medical consultation or examination. Always seek the advice of a trained health professional with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition and before seeking any treatment. Proper medical attention should always be sought for specific ailments. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking medical treatment due to information obtained in “Thyroid School” emails. Any information received from these emails is not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure. These emails, websites, and social media accounts are for information purposes only. The information in these emails, websites, and social media accounts are not intended to replace proper medical care.