Dr. David Brownstein, M.D., is a board-certified family physician and one of the nation’s foremost practitioners of holistic medicine. He is editor of Dr. David Brownstein’s Natural Way to Health newsletter. Dr. Brownstein has lectured internationally to physicians and others about his success with natural hormones and nutritional therapies in his practice. His books include Drugs That Don’t Work and Natural Therapies That Do!; Iodine: Why You Need It, Why You Can’t Live Without It; Salt Your Way To Health; The Miracle of Natural Hormones; Overcoming Arthritis, Overcoming Thyroid Disorders; The Guide to a Gluten-Free Diet; and The Guide to Healthy Eating. He is the medical director of the Center for Holistic Medicine in West Bloomfield, Mich., where he lives with his wife, Allison, and their teenage daughters, Hailey and Jessica.

Dr. David Brownstein, M.D.

Secrets of Your Body Temperature

Wednesday, 07 Aug 2013 09:32 AM

By Dr. Brownstein

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Question: I have taken my temperature (under arm) for six days and the temperatures were: 94.8, 95.8, 96.8, 96.5, 94.9, and 93.3. What do those readings indicate?

Dr. Brownstein's Answer:

Taking your temperature first thing in the morning when you get up gives you what is known as a basal body temperature. The basal body temperature test was popularized by Dr. Broda Barnes in the 1970s.

A normal basal body temperature, under the arm, is between 97.8 and 98.2 degrees Fahrenheit. If you take the basal body temperature orally or on the forehead, add a degree to those numbers.

A low basal body temperature — below 97.8 degrees Fahrenheit — can be a sign that the thyroid is under-functioning. However, a low temperature can also indicate other things, such as low adrenal function.

I use basal body temperature and blood tests to identify, monitor, and treat thyroid and adrenal problems.

Because your temperatures are so low, I suggest that you seek out a healthcare provider
knowledgeable about both basal body temperature tests and hypothyroidism. Once you have your hormonal system balanced, the basal body temperature should return to the normal range.

I have written about the basal body temperature test in my book, Overcoming Thyroid Disorders.

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