Earlier this month, we reviewed the complex network of glands and organs that comprises the endocrine system. Key components of the endocrine system are the glands that produce and release hormones, the hormones that regulate various physiological processes, and the organs and tissues that hormones target.
Doctor Morse uses the power of herbs to assist the body in its detoxification efforts. His herbal formulas are expertly crafted to enhance the function of cells in weakened tissues, organs and glands. Just as whole, living foods have synergistic actions and benefits for the body, so do herbs. When blended into formulas, the therapeutic constituents in individual herbs become amplified, creating a combined synergistic action that empowers the body to cleanse itself intuitively. This is the basis of Doctor Morse’s methodology for structuring personalized herbal protocols based on specific imbalances.
Our herbal protocols journey continues this month as we focus on common glandular weaknesses specific to each endocrine gland.
Weakness – What do we mean?
When we refer to “weakness” in the body, we are referring to abnormal functions or imbalances in the body’s organs, glands, tissues and cells. This weakness can stem from genetic factors, lymph stagnation, poor elimination, and/or acidosis. It is a signal from the body that an imbalance is present, and that an organ, gland, or system is out of sorts and needs support. While dysfunction in one system can adversely affect another, it can also be said that positive effects on one system can positively affect another.
Keep these “signals” of weakness in mind as you read through the protocol suggestions for the endocrine system. Without a doubt, you will recognize that one weakness often overlaps the roles of multiple endocrine glands, which reminds us just how important it is to always support the endocrine system as part of a detoxification or maintenance herbal protocol.
A Note About the Pituitary and Its Effects on Other Glands
The pituitary gland is the “master gland” of the endocrine system that releases a variety of hormones that influence the organ systems and functions of the body. Some of the most common endocrine gland weaknesses are affected in part by pituitary function. Lymphatic stagnation, poor blood circulation, and inadequate cellular waste elimination all create an acidic environment that can impair gland function, further exacerbating genetic gland weakness. As we build protocols for endocrine glands weaknesses, consider that the pituitary gland may also be weak and lymphatically congested. It is not a gland that we race to stimulate in an herbal protocol. Therefore, we emphasize focus on “draining the brain,” enhancing lymph and blood circulation in the head, and expelling mucus from the sinuses to open avenues for improved pituitary function.
Endocrine Systems Protocols
The protocols below will address common weaknesses in the endocrine system, focusing on how these weaknesses can impact individual glands. As we move along, we will identify the intimate connection between each gland and the hormone and nervous system communication network. Remember, one gland affects another, one body system affects another; this is the beauty of synergy and balance!
Formula Favorites for Endocrine System Protocols
Before we get into formulas and protocols, we’d like to take a moment to encourage you to talk to your doctor before beginning any endocrine system protocol, especially since many endocrine system responses can be the symptoms of some greater issue.
The following protocols have been designed by Doctor Morse and used to support many folks on their healing journey. However, they are only recommendations and should be taken into account alongside recommendations from a doctor.
This may be repetitive, but always remember that a successful detoxification protocol starts with a strong foundation. Be self-aware and be attentive to what you bring into your body. Our foundational formulas are designed to support any herbal protocol: a GI formula, a Kidneys & Bladder formula, a Lymphatic System formula and a formula to support a component of the endocrine system, such as the Endocrine Daily formula.
Don’t forget the importance of appropriate food choices and proper food combining!
Thyroid weakness presents in a variety of ways, but how is this weakness revealing itself in your body? Perhaps you are sensitive to colder temperatures, experience fluctuations in your body weight, or feel tired and deal with gloomy moods at times. A combination of any of these physiological signals could suggest thyroid function impairment. Maybe your experiences are completely opposite – you are a bundle of nervous energy and irritable, you deal with mood swings, and you are sensitive to heat. This may suggest a thyroid weakness that leans towards overactivity. Why? The thyroid produces hormones that regulate the body’s metabolic rate, growth and development. It has a role in controlling heart rate, muscle and digestive function, brain development, and bone maintenance. Here is an herbal protocol to support the thyroid in these ways.
Weakness in the parathyroids may affect your mood and the integrity of your connective tissues. These glands are important in regulating the amount of calcium, phosphorus and magnesium in the bones and blood through Parathyroid Hormone (PTH). These four tiny glands sit on the back of the thyroid gland. Weakness in the thyroid gland may also lead to weakness in the parathyroid glands, but not always. Many of the complaints between the thyroid and parathyroid are connected. An herbal protocol for parathyroids weakness will include herbal formulas that support the endocrine system in its entirety, with an added focus on musculoskeletal support and optimal mineral utilization through the adrenal glands.
Adrenal Glands Weakness*
The adrenal glands produce several hormones, some of the most notable being cortisol (a glucocorticoid), adrenaline, and aldosterone (a mineralocorticoid). Effects of adrenal hormone imbalances can be experienced as stress responses, blood sugar and blood pressure abnormalities, and as impacts to metabolism. Doctor Morse frequently references the importance of the adrenals, and we can see why! Supporting the adrenals is an essential component of a detoxification protocol for cleansing and strengthening the body, and we support these glands by way of the neuroendocrine connection.
Pineal Gland Weakness*
The pineal gland is a very tiny gland, but it has big impacts on your routine. The Pineal gland receives information about the light-dark cycle from the environment because it is stimulated by light. The pineal produces and secretes the hormone melatonin, and it is referred to as “third eye” because of its primary function of letting in light and darkness.
The highest levels of melatonin are released when there is darkness, and production is decreased when you are exposed to light. So, put down your computer or cell phone when you are trying to sleep! This gland is important in regulating your patterns of sleep and waking.
Supporting the pineal gland in its functions is achieved through diet and herbal assistance. The Adrenal Support formula is recommended because the release of cortisol may affect the sleep-wake cycle. Healthy cortisol levels are generally lower before sleep and higher before waking. We also recommend the Happy Caps formula because it supports the endocrine and nervous systems, which is beneficial to your overall well-being in the process of cleansing and restoring balance to your body and routine.
The pancreas is an amazing organ because it functions as an endocrine and exocrine gland. It produces and secretes hormones as part of its endocrine system function, and it produces and secretes digestive enzymes, ions and water as an exocrine gland, supporting the digestive process.
A major role of the pancreas in the endocrine system (along with our adrenal glands) is its functions related to blood sugar regulation. Blood sugars are alternatively known as blood glucose. Our blood glucose levels are affected by more than just what we eat. Components of a personal lifestyle, like activity levels, daily eating patterns, and other body weaknesses impact blood glucose levels. Here are a few key points to remember about elevated or low blood glucose levels.
Elevated blood glucose levels:
- Elevated blood glucose levels signal the pancreas to release insulin.
- Insulin is a hormone that helps get glucose into the cells to be used for energy.
Low blood glucose levels:
- Dysfunction in the liver, kidneys and hormones can lead to a drop in blood glucose levels.
- The pancreas must stimulate the liver to release stored glucose to increase blood glucose levels.
Whether your blood glucose levels are high or low, it still reflects a weakness in the pancreas. Key organs to focus on would be the pancreas, adrenals and the liver.
Note: If you are taking medication(s) to regulate your blood sugars, it is best practice to continue open communication with your prescriber regarding your intentions to adjust your diet and incorporate herbal supplements in your routine. Do not abruptly stop any medications being prescribed. Your prescriber will assist you with properly titrating dosing as you work to naturally reinforce balance in your body’s systems.
*FDA warning: This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.