At age 25, I was diagnosed with stage two papillary thyroid cancer. It was a pretty crushing blow; I’m not going to kid you. It was actually the third time I’d been diagnosed with cancer in my life. At age 17 I was diagnosed with skin cancer. At age 19 I came out of remission and was diagnosed again with skin cancer. At age 25, it was my thyroid and it had to be taken out. Two days ago, my thyroid was removed. It was completely removed and I was told I would have to take medication for the rest of my life.
Taking a pill every morning seemed a small price to pay for beating cancer for the third time. I was also told that I would have to start taking vitamins and supplements to keep my body strong and functioning. Again, this was small potatoes to having been diagnosed and living with thyroid cancer!
So, in addition to synthroid (a hormone used to imitate the function of the thyroid), I will be taking vitamin D supplements daily. This will be rounded out by calcium, vitamin E, zinc, and iodine. Of course, any healthy diet should be complimented by a good multivitamin or supplements, but it is even more essential when faced with the removal of a vital organ like the thyroid.
Your thyroid is responsible for regulating a lot of things in your body, mainly iodine, calcium, and of course your metabolism. With the removal of the organ that creates the hormone to regulate these, it is vital that strong vitamins and supplements be used to help your body cope with the transition.
Vitamin D and calcium are essential in maintaining and/or improving bone health after the removal of the thyroid and should be taken in concert with a good multi-vitamin. Personally, the small chewable kid’s vitamins are the perfect way to make me take vitamins. They’re so tasty!
Even as a survivor, I know how easy it is to sit on the couch and eat potato chips instead of going to the gym to run on the treadmill. I know that it’s easy to say “I feel good today so I don’t need to take my multi-vitamin this morning.” But don’t fall into that trap. It’s your only body and you need to treat it well.
Prevention of course, is the key to a lot of sicknesses. Some, of course, you can’t prevent, like thyroid cancer, but you can try to stay as healthy as possible. Exercise, eat well, and take vitamins and supplements to keep up your body’s natural balance of hormones.
I’m 25 and have survived cancer three times. I feel like I can take on the world! I can do anything! I’m Clark Kent! But even Superman should take his vitamins.