Sunday, November 21, 2010

Pancreatitis & the Endocrine System

endocrine system and pancreatitisThe pancreas is part of the endocrine system. A few years back I notice I had an enlarged thyroid. At some point I was reading up on it and realized that both the thyroid and pancreas were part of the endocrine system.

The way I initially suspected I was having troubles with my pancreas was because each time my daughter would do reflexology on my feet my pancreas was sore. This was the case for several years before going to a doctor about it. In fact, the soreness on the bottom of my foot lead me to learn more about the pancreas and why it might be sore. This is why I was able to tell the doctors I thought I was having problems with my pancreas when I went into the emergency hospital.
endocrine system and pancreas
Later, when trying to figure out if there was anything I could do about my enlarged thyroid I discovered its relation to the pancreas via the endocrine system.

When I massage my feet (or when my daughter does it for me) there are areas which are usually sore - the pancreas and the pituitary are always on the list. When I had the flu over the past couple weeks my thymus was so sore that area of my foot was achy when walking on it.

So one of the questions I consider when trying to improve or maintain the condition of my pancreas is how it interacts to and is affected by the overall health and well-being of the endocrine system.

If my thymus or thyroid is weakened will this negatively impact my pancreas. Logic would lead me to believe the answer is 'yes'. The reasoning being that the interaction of the whole affects the whole so if other parts of the endocrine system are weak the result will be a weaker pancreas. This matters because it could affect the overall health and function of my pancreas and therefore affect my overall longevity.

systemic enzymes and pancreasYesterday, I went to the health food store. I was out of Wobenzym N and needed more. Wobenzym N is an anti-inflammatory systemic enzyme which seems to be a benefit to my system. When my pancreas is inflamed I like to take three Wobenzym N tablets. This seems to result in a decrease of inflammation in the pancreas region.

Bound and determined to find the bottle on my own - even though it was no longer in the same section as previously - I scoured the shelves. I noticed a bottle called 'Thyroid Balance' which claimed to be for healthy thyroid function. Intrigued, I pancreas and thyroidpicked up the bottle and the side which stated the over-the-counter capsules 'help to regulate healthy metabolism and to counteract such things as 'thinning hair, poor circulation' and 'mood swings' all of which I experience. Wow! All these symptoms could be related to my thyroid which in turn could be affecting my pancreas. I touched my swollen thyroid gland only to notice it was barely there anymore. Hmmm. I thought to myself the Wobenzym N must have shrunken it. Good!

While my thyroid gland is still swollen it is not nearly as swollen as it was before. So I bought the bottle of capsules to see what sort of affect it might have on my system - hoping for a positive affect.

The bottle says to take 4 capsules with breakfast. I did this. A little later my pancreas felt uncomfortable and swollen, as it does now. I had recently eaten breakfast so I don't know if it is because I ate a little more than I should have or if my pancreas doesn't prefer the thyroid capsules.

pancreatitis and alimentary systemI will take the capsules again in hopes of seeing if it is beneficial. I do think it impacted my mood positively, but if it impacts my pancreas negatively than the capsules would not be something I would continue to take.

I suggested to Sophie that she take them as well to see if it helps balance her hormone. This evening she said that she thinks the thyroid capsules might have helped her mood because although she has been a little grumpy over the past couple days she was not grumpy today. She's going to keep testing it out.

If she might tend to have a weakened endocrine system then it would be better to be proactive to help her protect from the negative side effects such a weakened system might cause to her body.

Noteworthy: I think my eye sight has improved since taking the thyroid capsules this morning - meaning, things don't seem to be quite as blurring. Just thought it was worth making note of...

By the way, my thymus does not usually (like never) hurt on my foot when doing reflexology. The sensitivity in this area seems to be a direct result of having the flu.

Another note: While the thymus has endocrine function, it is not considered to be an endocrine gland. Nonetheless, when I had the flu my pancreas was not doing as well. Perhaps the weakened state of the thymus affected the pancreas as a result of its direct endocrine function.

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