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Thread: Hypothyroidism?

  1. #1
    Black's Avatar
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    Hypothyroidism?

    Been feeling really terrible the last year or so, slowly getting worse over time. I've been extremely tired, regardless of how much sleep I get. I'm physically tired/weak as well. Sluggish. Brain fog. Don't sleep well. irritable (more so due to the tiredness). I'm sure there's more.

    I've actually had the symptoms for awhile, they're just much more debilitating now. Also, I am recovering from iron-deficiency anemia. I know iron has a big role with the thyroid. But I'm not sure which can cause which. I think I read low iron can cause hypothyroidism, which makes sense. Not sure if hypothyroidism can contribute to an iron deficiency.

    Trying to figure out where it came from because I had also been eating vegan for the last 1.5 years. I've since added meats of all kinds (grass-fed beef, chicken and wild caught fish), as well as eggs. That may have helped a little, but I still feel terrible.

    So now I'm looking into thyroid. I'm going in for BW next week (gonna try and move it up sooner) and going to test TSH, FT3 and FT4, as well as, serum iron, ferritin, TIBC, UIBC. What else is worth testing in the thyroid department? Or anything else?

    I know TSH is a poor indicator, but here are my TSH levels over the last few years.

    6/13 -
    TSH 4.440
    10/13 -
    TSH 3.170
    07/14 -
    TSH 2.860
    Thyroxine (T4) 4.3 (4.5-12.0)
    1/15 -
    TSH 5.060
    07/15 -
    TSH 2.760
    12/15 -
    TSH 3.740
    03/14 -
    TSH 4.260

    A year or two ago, I ran some T3 during a cycle/blast. I had read that taking synthetic T3 or T4 can inhibit natural production, but then I also read that it was unlikely. I used 25mcg for two weeks, and then 50mcg for the last 6 weeks. Could this have possibly caused any issues? I was having mild symptoms before this as well.

    I actually felt GREAT when I was taking the T3. Pretty much the opposite of above. More awake/alert, clear minded, peaceful, etc. Which is what is making me look at the thyroid now.

    Lots of stuff. Any input/experiences would be great.
    Last edited by Black; 05-23-2016 at 06:14 PM.

  2. #2
    hammerheart's Avatar
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    Circulating serum iron regulates the enzymes (deiodinase) converting T4 to T3. When low in this essential nutrient, the system slows metabolism in order to spare the available poor of Iron. But it can also happen the way other, ie low thyroid -> low Iron.

    You need a proper thyroid panel (TSH, FT4/3) to discern what's going on.

    Exogenous thyroid hormone will OBVIOUSLY reduce endogenous thyroid output due to negative feedback at the hypothalamus/pituitary. It is usually reversible, over the course of weeks.


    Care to post bloodwork regarding your "iron deficiency anaemia"? I'm interested.


    Another cause of low iron is chronic inflammation.

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the reply Bizzaro. Here is the first set of labs I ran when I knew something was going on. I'm going to post just the flags to save space for now. Let me know if you would like to see anything else.


    11/20/2015
    MCV - 75 (79-97) Low
    MCH - 23.0 (26.6-33.0) Low
    MCHC - 30.6 (31.5-35.7) Low
    RDW - 17.3 (12.3-15.4) High


    Creatinine, Serum - 1.44 (0.76-1.27)

    Iron, serum - 16 (40-155)



    On 12/4/2015, ran a more in depth iron panel,w/ some vitamins

    Vitamin B-12 - 385 (211-946)

    TIBC - 425 (250-450)
    UIBC - 388 (150-375)
    Iron - 37 (40-155)
    Iron Saturation - 9 (15-55)
    Ferritin - 7 (30-400)

    Vitamin D Hydroxy - 26.5 (30.0-100.0)

    TSH - 2.760 (0.450-4.500)
    T4, Free (Direct) - 1.19 (0.82-1.77)


    So I started eating eggs after this bloodwork, and fish a few times. Here is the next panel, not in depth because my insurance has been messing up. But I figured if there was an improvement, I'd see it here first.

    3/14/2016

    MCV - 78 (79-97)
    MCH - 24.2 (26.6-33.0)
    MCHC - 31.2 (31.5-35.7)
    RDW - 18.8 (12.3-15.4)

    Iron, serum - 34 (38-169)


    So eggs didn't help as much as I hoped, so shortly after this bloodwork, I started to add meats of all kinds back in.

    This next bloodwork I get will tell me if that has helped any. I'm desperate to find out what's going on.

    Also, what can cause chronic inflammation?

  4. #4
    hammerheart's Avatar
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    Your serum Iron is abysmally low. Coupled with a low ferritin this is highly suggestive of frank iron deficiency. Vegan diet unfortunately is becoming more and more of a common cause.


    Eggs are good for overall nutrition, but not enough for meeting recommended intake. Best bio-available Iron is in the form of heme from meat. You might consider supplementing. Go for 100% of RDA (10-15mg) daily, monday to friday , from Iron fumarate or gluconate. These are both cheap and effective. Avoid megadosing.

    Fish will also help your thyroid due to Iodine content, but beware of heavy polluted species like tuna and King mackerel.

    Be sure to include FRESH food high in folate. This is too an important nutrient which is either lost or destroyed by cooking.


    Overall you don't like you have a "primary" problem with your thyroid, I'd focus on nutrition instead.



    Also, what can cause chronic inflammation?

    Chronic disease and.. modern age. But it doesn't appear to your problem.

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    just to add- try using iodised salt in your cooking, and also a high carb diet has been implicated in chronic inflammation.

    ....And welcome Bizarro- i like your style.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bizzarro View Post
    Your serum Iron is abysmally low. Coupled with a low ferritin this is highly suggestive of frank iron deficiency. Vegan diet unfortunately is becoming more and more of a common cause.

    Eggs are good for overall nutrition, but not enough for meeting recommended intake. Best bio-available Iron is in the form of heme from meat. You might consider supplementing. Go for 100% of RDA (10-15mg) daily, monday to friday , from Iron fumarate or gluconate. These are both cheap and effective. Avoid megadosing.

    Fish will also help your thyroid due to Iodine content, but beware of heavy polluted species like tuna and King mackerel.

    Be sure to include FRESH food high in folate. This is too an important nutrient which is either lost or destroyed by cooking.


    Overall you don't like you have a "primary" problem with your thyroid, I'd focus on nutrition instead.






    Chronic disease and.. modern age. But it doesn't appear to your problem.
    This was my first guess as well, due to the timing of when I started to feel bad. I've been eating meat for the last month or a little more. Grass-fed beef, chicken, and wild salmon, plus a little white fish as well. Feel like I'm making some progress, but still feel bad. Is this something that may take some time to build back up?

    I've been taking an iron supplement OTC. It contains Iron (Ferrous Sulfate), Magnesium, Chloride, Sulfate (FeSO4) and Boron. I take one serving a day, which is 22mg. However, I just noticed on the back, it says its vegan. Does that mean its from non-heme sources of iron? Also, about heme and non-heme. I read that humans don't generally absorb non-heme (plant) iron well. But I think I read something about non-heme iron being absorbed better if its taken with heme (meat) iron.

    I've also been taking some adaptogenic herbs to help with any adrenal fatigue I've caused myself. Ashwanghanda (sp?), licorice root and selenium. This was all started recently.

    I try to eat as much vegetation as possible, opting for raw when able to. My folate tested at 14.8ng/ml (range - >3.0ng/ml)

    I have been doing as much research on what foods should be best for me. I've come up with eating the following combinations of foods:

    Meats - Beef, Chicken and Fish
    Legumes - Lentils and Beans (sparingly)
    Fruits - Mostly tart fruits (berries) and moderate amounts of others (bananas, melon, etc.)
    Vegetables - All, but mostly focusing on dark, leafy green (Kale, Spinach, Chard, Bok-Choy, Cabbage, etc.)
    Root vegetables/Tubers - I used to think potatoes were grains, but I've read otherwise. I don't eat a bunch, but I need to add some more sweet potatoes, for variety and another source of beneficial carbs.
    Seeds - Chia, Hemp, Flax (I'd like to add some pumpkin seeds as well)
    Nuts - Sparingly. Almonds, Pecans, Walnuts, etc. No peanuts.
    Oils - I cook with Olive Oil and Coconut Oil
    Misc. - Avocado. I never know where to put it. Most say its a fruit, but either way, I eat a good amount of this a day.

    Avoid:
    Grains - I think sprouted grains might be ok, but with all the issues I'm seeing, it sounds like its best to stay away. I never thought grains bothered me until I went vegan and was eating a bunch of them. Now that I've cut them out, I feel like I'm noticing a difference.
    Dairy - I eat eggs and don't consider that dairy really. Never been a milk fan, but I used to eat cheese, cottage cheese and yogurt. I don't think I do very well with dairy anyway.
    Sugar - This is a no brainer. But I don't eat foods with added sugar (processed). Fruits and honey I eat, but very little.
    Caffeine - When I thought I might be experiencing some adrenal/thyroid issues, I cut out caffeine. So no more pre-workout (which is terrible anyway) and no more coffee (that was a little tougher). But I think I'm on the right track here. When I start to watch how much coffee/energy drinks people drink, its crazy. WAY over caffeinated.

    I started to really pay attention to how I feel after I eat something. So I've been trying. Going in today to run a new set of iron labs, along with some vitamins and a little thyroid (TSH, FT3 and FT4) just to be sure. Gonna start there and then depending on the results, if needed, come up with another set of labs to look at. I don't know.

    Thanks for the information bizzaro. Very informative.
    Last edited by Black; 05-24-2016 at 09:19 AM.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Simon1972 View Post
    just to add- try using iodised salt in your cooking, and also a high carb diet has been implicated in chronic inflammation.

    ....And welcome Bizarro- i like your style.
    I came across adding salt when I was researching thyroid/adrenal issues. Stupid question, but is sea salt consider iodized salt?

    And I think I'm more on the low carb end. I'd be surprised if I get over 200g a day. Once I cut out grains, my carbs dropped quite a bit.

    Thanks for the input Simon.

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    [QUOTE=Black;7180688]I came across adding salt when I was researching thyroid/adrenal issues. Stupid question, but is sea salt consider iodized salt?/QUOTE]


    Yes.
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    Read this: Iron and hypothyroidism - Stop The Thyroid Madness

    Your doc prescribed iron supplements? And have you had bloodwork after the iron supp?

    There is plenty of iron in green leaf vegetables, but you need to eat enough and of course your body needs to be able to absorb it.

    You need to post the complete bloodwork, just the flagged items its incomplete, do you have free T3 and free T4 values?

  10. #10
    hammerheart's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Black View Post
    Is this something that may take some time to build back up?

    I've been taking an iron supplement OTC. It contains Iron (Ferrous Sulfate), Magnesium, Chloride, Sulfate (FeSO4) and Boron. I take one serving a day, which is 22mg. However, I just noticed on the back, it says its vegan. Does that mean its from non-heme sources of iron? Also, about heme and non-heme. I read that humans don't generally absorb non-heme (plant) iron well. But I think I read something about non-heme iron being absorbed better if its taken with heme (meat) iron.

    This was my first guess as well, due to the timing of when I started to feel bad. I've been eating meat for the last month or a little more. Grass-fed beef, chicken, and wild salmon, plus a little white fish as well. Feel like I'm making some progress, but still feel bad. Is this something that may take some time to build back up?

    As a standard rule, sulfate salts have lower oral bioavailability than organic salts. If your stools turn... black (sorry), know is from the Iron. Same applyes to oxides (MgO, Zn O, etc).

    Iron stores might take more than a year to replete. Ferritin is an index of Iron stores and yours is very low. Hence, supplementation is the way I'd recommend for faster recovery; bloods will tell whether what your taking is effective or not.

    Iron supplements are mostly in the non-heme form. If the labels says it's vegan it likely refers to the gelatin capsule..

    Try to add ascorbic acid (Vit. C) to your meals. It boosts absorption by preventing phytate in food from binding the metal molecule. It is a simple as a sprinkle of lemon juice. And while sprouting grain enhances nutrient availability by reducing phytates, seeds, greens and legumes are still a major source.

    I started to really pay attention to how I feel after I eat something.
    Don't overdo it. Talking about stress/Adrenal "fatigue", the brain just doesn't like too much of "thoughtful" approach to food. Always enjoy your meals.


    I came across adding salt when I was researching thyroid/adrenal issues. Stupid question, but is sea salt consider iodized salt?

    And I think I'm more on the low carb end. I'd be surprised if I get over 200g a day. Once I cut out grains, my carbs dropped quite a bit.

    Sea salt is sourced from marine environment, on its own has trace/negligible amounts of Iodine. Iodized salt has potassium Iodide added to the mixture, regardless of origin.


    Remember that us humans ultimately burn glucose as fuel. Low blood glucose is the most powerful trigger for adrenal stress hormones. Too low of a carb intake in the long run will negatively affect health as much as diets high in refined sugars, but this is IMHO. Individual physiology might also play a role. Perhaps not everyone is suited for low carb.
    Last edited by hammerheart; 05-25-2016 at 01:09 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bizzarro View Post
    If your stools turn... black

    There's some humor there......



    ps: Great stuff Bizzarro
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    I was hyperthyroid and when it was fixed, I gained 70 much needed pounds in about 2 years. I could never gain weight before that. My mood and energy also completely changed. It's definitely worth looking into

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    Hyperthyroidism is a different beast, though. Did you underwent surgery? Is it of autoimmune origin (Grave's disease) ?

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    Quote Originally Posted by bizzarro View Post
    Hyperthyroidism is a different beast, though. Did you underwent surgery? Is it of autoimmune origin (Grave's disease) ?
    I'm pretty sure you're replying to me (sorry I don't know since there aren't any quotes). So I'll reply lol, I took a radioactive iodine pill and it killed a growth that had been in my thyroid. Then after about 9-10 months I became hypothyroid and needed to take medication.

    I started suffering from severe migraines out of nowhere when I was about 13, and it happened maybe twice a year always during the same time of day. Debilitating migraines, where nothing in the world helped and I had to lay down on the floor in excruciating pain. I know people who say they have migraines and yet they're walking around doing things while having one. I had to literally become immobile, and I had to focus on my breathing pattern in order to try and erase my thoughts and just become one with my breath lol so that I could try and distract my mind until it was over. It was awful.

    After I fixed my thyroid I never had another migraine again!

    Also, I just remembered, but around the same time I would randomly have irregular heartbeats, such as I would wake up in the morning and breathe in just the right(wrong) way so that every third beat of my heart it would feel like there were two beats at once... Bump, bump, bump, bumpBUMP, bump, bump... My heart would beat like that for the rest of the entire day. Very strange. This happened a few times a year, also. This never happened again after I fixed my thyroid, either.
    Last edited by LeeSin1; 06-02-2016 at 08:39 PM.

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    Oh, that double heartbeat is very common in hyperthyroidism. On the other end, myself, as hypothyroid, I felt like my heart was missing. Had bradycardia all the time. My temp readings were as low as 35 C (77 F).

    Glad is all over now, for the both of us.

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