VAIL - Vail Vitality Center's popular Lunch & Learn series continues Wednesday with a lecture from Dr. Heidi Archer on "The Importance of the Thyroid Gland."The thyroid gland is a two-inch long gland in the neck that has an important job: producing the thyroid hormones that regulate the body's metabolic function (the body's use of energy). "All of the hormones in your body work together, so levels of one hormone affect all of your other hormones, including thyroid hormone levels," Archer said. "At Vail Vitality Center we can test your current hormone levels for any imbalances and help you bring your hormones back into harmony." A sluggish thyroid, or hypothyroidism, is the most common type of thyroid imbalance. It occurs when the thyroid gland is under-active and may cause symptoms including:• General fatigue - waking up exhausted no matter how much sleep you get.• Hair loss.• Weight gain (both fluid and fat) despite working out more and eating less.• Puffiness in the face and/or swelling of the ankles.• Low body temperature - ice cold hands or feet.• Digestive problems (constipation, irritable bowel).• Brain fog.• Dry skin.• Muscle pain and longer recovery time.• Elevated cholesterol.• Increased risk of coronary heart disease, according to a recent article in The Journal of the American Medical Association (Sept. 2010).During this Lunch & Learn session DArcher will discuss the types and potential causes of thyroid imbalance, as well as available tests and possible treatment options.Archer is a regenerative medicine specialist at Vail Vitality Center at Vail Mountain Lodge. She is AMA board certified in physical medicine and rehabilitation, anti-aging, regenerative and functional medicine. Her practice focuses on preventative/regenerative medicine, anti-aging and hormone therapy for the patient or athlete, with expertise in diagnosis and treatment of pain from injury, illness or disabling conditions.Lunch & Learn sessions take place on select Wednesdays throughout the summer and are led by the medical professionals and industry experts at Vail Vitality Center at Vail Mountain Lodge. This affordable, ongoing program is designed to address some of the most common health concerns, enabling attendees to take the first steps toward a better understanding of personal wellness. Each Lunch & Learn session features a different topic, and all sessions include lunch from Terra Bistro.An upcoming Lunch & Learn sessions includes "Digestion: The Key to Health" on Aug. 15 with Dr. Lisa Muncy (Noon to 1:30 p.m.). Cost for Vail Vitality Center's new Lunch & Learn program is $40 per session; pre-registration is required. Lunch & Learn sessions include a topic-based lecture delivered by one or more staff professionals, lunch from Terra Bistro (vegetarian/vegan option available) and - for some sessions - a hands-on fitness experience. For information and pre-registration, contact Vail Vitality Center at 970-476-7721.