The thyroid produces thyroxine, a hormone that controls the body's metabolism speed.
If hyperthyroidism occurs, that is, exaggerated thyroid function, all metabolism is accelerated: the heart beats faster, the body temperature is higher than normal; The person loses weight because it spends more energy.
This situation favors the development of heart and vascular diseases, as blood starts to circulate with greater pressure.
Goiter may occur, that is, a “chat” caused by the overgrowth of the thyroid. Exophthalmos may also appear, that is, the eyes are bulging.
If the thyroid works less or produces less thyroxine than normal, hypothyroidism, and the body also changes: metabolism slows down, some regions of the body become swollen, the heart beats more slowly, the blood circulates more slowly, the person spends less energy, becoming more prone to obesity, the responses physical and mental slows down. Here, too, goiter can occur.
When hypothyroidism occurs in childhood, it can cause physical and mental retardation. One of the possible causes of this disease is the lack (or insufficiency) of iodine in the diet, as iodine is an element present in the composition of thyroxine. In most countries as well as Brazil, there are laws that oblige cooking salt manufacturers to add iodine to this product. This ensures that most people consume the required amount of iodine daily.