Healing Hypothyroid with diet?? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 24 Old 11-05-2006, 01:27 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Has anyone tried treating their hypothyroid disease with foods?

I recently went off of my synthroid (8 days ago) as per my doctors request to see what my levels did. I am STILL gaining weight (up over 20 lbs now in 4 months) and I'm feeling ickier by the day. I really don't want to go back on the synthroid and I found a few websites that suggested diet can help with hypothyroid.

I printed the articles out and forgot to save them, so I'll type out some main points.

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One good reason to consider this approach (foods) is the fact htat whatever caused the underactive thyroid is likely to also cause other problems in the body
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80% of the body's T3 is actually produced outside of the thyroid gland, primarily in the liver, by chemical midification of T4
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Because thyroid hormoned govern medabolic rate in all body cells, hypothyroidism can affect all body functions and can manifest in a variety of symptoms
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Because certain foods impair thyroid function, we suggest that you consume only small amounts of these foods until your thyroid is normalized. Cabbage, brussel sprouts, broccoli, kale, cauliflower, maize, turnips, sweet potatoes, lima beans, bamboo shoots, mustard greens, onions, peanuts, pinenuts, walnuts, almonds, sorghum, cassava, millet, grapefruit and apples
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Other foods that should be limited include those foods rich in saturated fats (beef, lamb, pork, dairy, organ meats); trans fatty acid-containing, partially hydrogenated vegetable oils (found in margarine and most processed foods); and refined carbohydrates (table sugar, candy, cookies, crackers, muffins, bagels, cakes, pasta, most cereals and breads)
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Eat mostly whole, unrefined foods the way nature provides them. For example, eat baked potatoes rather than french-fries. Assure adequate protein intake. Eat liberal amounts of vegetables, legumes, fruits, nuts, seeds, fish and eggs. Consume smaller amounts of lean meats, poultry, dairy products, whole grains, whole grain breads and pastas. Cold water fish such as mackerel, salmon and sardines should be consumed at least several times per week. Larger fish such as tuna and swordfish as well as shellfish and sea vegetables, often are contaminated with high levels of mercury which can suppress thyroid function. Limit these foods as well as fresh water fish which are often contaminated with thyroid-suppressing PCB's.
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A high quality vitamin is needed for someone suffering from hypothyroidism
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Selenium is one of the most important minerals for hypothyroid sufferers. It is an important part of the T3/T3 conversion process.
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Any deciciency in the amino acid L-tyrosine can interfere with the healthy function of your thyroid
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Coconut oil can help thyroid function and boost your metablism which can help with the weight problems that so many hypothyroid patients encounter. The oil can be used in cooking, or taken by the spoonfull as a supplement. An organic, extra-virgin oil is recommended
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#2 of 24 Old 11-05-2006, 02:05 PM
 
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a friend wasn't having any luck losing weight with the meds. she stayed on teh meds but also went on an insulin-resistant diet, with some success the most success was when she went on a super-low carbs diet for a week, biut i wouldn't recommend that -- can't imagine how folks sustain it
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#3 of 24 Old 11-05-2006, 04:44 PM
 
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check out ithyroid.com. i looked up what foods were high in the supplements she suggested (ie, brazil nuts for selenium and dulse for iodine) and added those to my diet. just an idea........
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#4 of 24 Old 11-05-2006, 04:58 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by nicolena View Post
check out ithyroid.com. i looked up what foods were high in the supplements she suggested (ie, brazil nuts for selenium and dulse for iodine) and added those to my diet. just an idea........

what is dulse?
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#5 of 24 Old 11-05-2006, 07:22 PM
 
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dulse is seaweed. i get it in the mini asian section of my health food store. wholefoods has it too. it comes in a bag, and it's pretty salty and oceany tasting. my girls and i eat it plain, but you can add it to soaked beans or stock, add it to stirfrys or salads, or toast it like you might kale.
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#6 of 24 Old 11-05-2006, 07:41 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by nicolena View Post
dulse is seaweed. i get it in the mini asian section of my health food store. wholefoods has it too. it comes in a bag, and it's pretty salty and oceany tasting. my girls and i eat it plain, but you can add it to soaked beans or stock, add it to stirfrys or salads, or toast it like you might kale.
we dont' hav a wholefoods store and our health food store is very limited. Kept powder we be the same thing pretty much wouldn't it be?
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#7 of 24 Old 11-05-2006, 07:58 PM
 
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similiar enough, i'd guess--higher iodine, which would be what you want (tho i read too high could be dangerous--but that was a pretty mainstream source--less trustworthy in my opinion). kelp away!
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#8 of 24 Old 11-06-2006, 12:58 AM
 
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I'm really interested in this thread, and hoping for other suggestions. I'll put in my 2-cents that taking an iodine supplement (I take Iodoral, they're pills with 12.5mg iodine) has helped me--my body temp has come up noticeably (but not back to normal), my hair stopped falling out (I had a baby 6 mos ago, and when my normal post-baby hair loss started to become really non-normal, I tried this), my weird dry skin got somewhat better. The lady running the company where I bought the Iodoral (online) recommended taking 3g sodium ascorbate (a form of vit C) daily to avoid an uncommon side effect--I forgot what, but I already take SA daily so I didn't pay a lot of attention.

Also, babygrant, it sounds like you've probably read that some folks have better results on armour, or another bio-identical. ... baby crying, bye.
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#9 of 24 Old 11-06-2006, 01:02 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Yeah, I've read all about armour thyroid. If I need to go back on the meds, I will go on armour instead of a synthetic. I'm hoping that I can minimize the symptoms with diet though.

Making a trip to the HFS tommorow and will stock up on some things.
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#10 of 24 Old 11-06-2006, 01:21 AM
 
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May I ask what you're stocking up on (if it's related to this--not trying to pry into your whole shopping list)? ...
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#11 of 24 Old 11-06-2006, 01:25 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by TanyaLopez View Post
May I ask what you're stocking up on (if it's related to this--not trying to pry into your whole shopping list)? ...
Not a problem. I'm going to buy some selenium. Some high quality multivitamins, coconut oil, possibly some l-tyrosine. Going to also stock up on a bunch of whole grains (quinoa, brown rice, oats, etc).
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#12 of 24 Old 11-06-2006, 01:34 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Oh and some kelp powder
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#13 of 24 Old 11-06-2006, 01:41 AM
 
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A multi-vitamin/mineral I ran across and liked (~6-8 months ago, so I don't remember all the reasons) was one recommended in an article somewhere in the thyroid.about.com website, Fatigued to Fantastic. It's a powder, with a separate b-complex as a pill. Gotta say, the flavor isn't great, but it's acceptable. Let me see if I can find the article/reasoning.... nope, guess not. I saw it at my local whole foods, but also online (where it's obviously cheaper). You can find the ingredients online, too, and see whether it fits the bill for what you're looking for.

I'm going to sub to the thread, I'm really interested in what other responses you get. And I hope you find some things that help you feel better.
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#14 of 24 Old 11-06-2006, 01:44 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Unfortunately I can't afford much so I'm hoping that I can find a good quality multivitamin since I know that most specific vitamins tend to be quite pricey! I already have B complex vitamins at home, so I could start taking one of those too.

I know some vitamins and minerals the body will just get rid of if there is excess, but which ones can somene overdose from??
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#15 of 24 Old 11-06-2006, 02:14 AM
 
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I buy my vitamins (mostly) on iherb.com. They have this stuff (a 30-day supply) for $32.47, and it has 200mcg selenium, 525mg l-tyrosine and a bunch of other amino acids, plus the usual assortment of vitamins/minerals. I wanted to provide specifics so you can compare buying individually vs. together.

I think the vitamins that are most of concern for overdose are fat-soluable, A and D are the ones that come to mind. But my reading says you can take pretty high levels (compared to what's in most multis) and still be okay. I think some of the minerals can cause problems in high dosages, but I really don't understand how the body uses minerals--an area of further research for me, in between all the usual stuff of day-to-day living. And some of the time it seems you can take them in relatively high dosages but if they are in combination with others, they are in balance and the body is fine with it. But it seems pretty complex, and I'm just at the beginning of learning about it. Sorry that wasn't more helpful.
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#16 of 24 Old 11-06-2006, 02:17 AM
 
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I'm very interested in this thread. I found out I was hypothyroid last year and had been for years. I just thought I was getting older and had lots of little kids! So I take Armour Thyroid now, but I really want to heal my thyroid if possible. I tried very hard to find an alternative to thyroid hormone, but I was not able to. But I don't want to give up! Someone recently suggested zinc and selenium. Anyone know about those and how much you should take? And what about flax seeds? I have been told to use those as well. And how much coconut oil are you supposed to take?

Thanks!
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#17 of 24 Old 11-06-2006, 11:49 AM - Thread Starter
 
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My paper I printed out says:

selenium - up to 200 mcg per day (just make sure you check the selenium content of your multivitamin first to see how much excess you need)

it also says there are many herbs that can he helpfull in supporting thyroid function. They include, but are not limited to: bayberry, black cohash, goldenseal, Siberian ginseng, astragalus, saw palmetto berry, triphala, lungwort, ashwagandha, guggul, skullcap and maca.

As for the coconut oil I have no idea. It just says you can cook with it or take it by the spoonfull as a supplement so my guess would be 1 tbsp???
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#18 of 24 Old 11-06-2006, 11:53 AM
 
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Where did you get the list of herbs? I had never considered herbs for tihs, but that makes sense, because I don't know about herbs for anything else either. I'm asking about the source cause I'd love to read about dosages.

And I don't know anything about coconut oil.

Thanks!
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#19 of 24 Old 11-06-2006, 01:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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DUH, I found the link at the bottom of the page I printed. lol I thought I had lost the websites.

Here is the link:
http://www.associatedcontent.com/pop...t_type_id=3101
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#20 of 24 Old 12-20-2006, 02:04 PM
 
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Has anyone looked in-depth at the supplement list on ithyroid.com? I'm looking at it now... I'm not "officially" hypothyroid, but my TSH went from 1.06 a year and a half ago to 3.3 now, and although my doc isn't using the new AACE normal range of 0.3-3.0, she did recommend I see an endo. So I've got an appointment now but I'm looking into my other options as well.
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#21 of 24 Old 12-20-2006, 08:30 PM
 
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TL-I wish my TSH was that low! I've been on a grain of Armour for almost 10 years, but since my level is 5.0, and the range on the test is .5-5.5, I'm 'normal'.: Heaven forbid you look at symptoms that are still occuring, but anyhoo-here's what I've learned...

If you're considering tyrosine, DO IT! It's the best thing! I was taking adderall which helped with the brain fog from being hypo (yeah, give me speed instead of adjustng my armour. Smart! again-: ) Anyhow, had to lay off the adderall when I got pg last Jan and the tyrosine helps nearly as much!

Coconut oil is excellent, esp when used to make fried taters. mmmmmmm.
I take a tbsp a day unless I cook w/ it, not a fan of the taste except in cooking. Cuts cravings and curbs appetite, if you take 1/2 hour before you eat...

Iodoral is a life saver...second that. Saturated fats (animal, etc.) help you absorb minerals.

A & D are only toxic if taken separately and if you take the synthetic forms.
Cod liver oil-not my fave-but it makes a huge, huge difference in energy levels. Amazingly so. I take 4 tablespoons-yes tablespoons-in a glass of oj every am-stir it up and chug it down and you don't taste it.

Check to see if you ahve a food intolerance that is causes general inflammation in your bod-dairy, wheat, nuts, soy esp-it's a huge goitregen-anything you crave is suspect. Go off it for two weeks, then try it. I did that w/ milk and I was sick for two days.

Thats all I know..and I can prove it...

I didn't know about selenium-it's a cancer fighter too. Good to know.
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#22 of 24 Old 12-20-2006, 08:33 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you Laurel!
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#23 of 24 Old 12-20-2006, 10:31 PM
 
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Laurel, I can't write much, but in Nov2002 the normal range was tightened to 0.3-3.0. You can go to the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists website to find it, do a search for something like TSH diagnosis. Your doc should accept that, it's supposed to be used from now on. My doc didn't realize the new limits, and even when I tried to explain, didn't get it. I need to give the office a hard copy of the AACE statement.

Will read more later, I need to get my daughter to bed. But thanks for responding!
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#24 of 24 Old 01-03-2007, 12:54 AM
 
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Got a question for y'all. I posted the same in The Thyroid Thread but wanted to ask here as well.

Does anyone have experience with the suggestions on ithyroid.com? Either positive or negative.

The hypothesis put forth by John, the guy who created the site, is based on his personal experiences and his research into the relationship between nutrition and thyroid function. He thinks that mineral deficiencies, either lack of intake or inability to use the minerals that are there, eventually starves the thyroid of the raw materials it needs (my paraphrasing). And that short-term vitamin/mineral supplements (lots of supplements, he has a rather detailed list) can restore those deficiencies and improve thyroid function. There’s a lot of information, specific suggestions and tons of research cited, but it’s still basically a do-it-yourself process. As symptoms changes, vitamin and mineral supplements need to be adjusted and he doesn’t discuss long-term sustainability but it seems clear that that needs to be evaluated on an individual basis to figure out how to prevent the specific deficiencies that developed in the first place.

I'm leaning toward trying this approach. I've been doing reading on minerals and how to balance them and understand when to stop--although he has what seem like good suggestions on starting, it's really a self-monitoring process to figure out what type of re-balancing is needed and when to taper off, cause I wouldn't want to be taking that many pills forever. And the thing that causes me some concern is that vitamins and minerals in these dosages are essentially drugs, and if I think I have the potential to make real, positive changes in my health, then it's also possible to make real, negative changes.

I just saw an endocrinologist last week who asked for more bloodwork, but I think the change in TSH over the past year plus my symptoms will be enough regardless of the results, I think she was looking for more info to help her see it as more clear-cut. She was really nice, a genuinely caring person, but I don't think I am well-suited for that approach (but obviously, if I need drugs, I do, cause I don't want to feel this way forever). There was no discussion of why a person would make antibodies to themselves, and obviously nothing about why this seems to be getting more prevalent over time.

Gotta run, and I think I'm starting to ramble. Thoughts?
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