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could my hypo - thyroid pose a major problem with weight-loss?

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  • could my hypo - thyroid pose a major problem with weight-loss?

    Hi I'm pretty new around here. I just stumbled in a few days ago and have been doing a lot of reading. A month ago someone suggested I read a book called "Wheat Belly" and I found it very convincing so I began removing wheat and grains from my diet. Looking for more recipes I searched the web and found myself at this site. After reading many of the articles and trying some of the recipes I have come to believe that this is really where I belong.

    I have lost about 5 lbs trying the" wheat belly" diet and enjoyed many of the recipes. But I think the use of artificial sugar just makes me crave it more and more. When I make up some of the almond flour chocolate chip cookies I will accidentally eat the whole batch. I think I have a problem.

    I have journeyed through many diet disasters through the years and am tired of doing the diet dance ( lose 5 lbs gain back 10, lose 5 lbs gain back 10) and am ready for a lifestyle change. After trying so many times to count calories, carbs, or points, I usually go crazy and ravage the potato chip isle at the local grocer, struggling for weeks to get back on track. From what I have read, a paleo diet sounds different and I am eager to give it a try.

    I am looking to lose at least 50 lbs but I do have a few things that may slow me down. I am 50 years old and being peri-menopausal could slow things down for me. I also have a hypo- thyroid condition (which is kinda like driving with the "E" break on) and I am wondering if that will be one of my biggest hurdles.

    Right now I try to walk for 30 minutes each day. I tried running last year but seriously injured my foot and have not been able to even walk for a long time. But I am up and going now, just not very fast. I may try going to the pool and try sprinting in the water and will dig out my weights.

    So here goes.....starting tomorrow morning....its good-by wheat belly and hello paleo
    An ex junk food addict - still fighting the fight. Sometimes I'm winning, sometimes I'm losing - but I'm still fighting

  • #2
    Hi Sandie! I've got hypothyroidism myself. I'm hoping to lose at least 15 pounds, but mostly I want to become stronger for work purposes and maybe personal reasons too. How's the change been going for you so far? Occasionally I miss my former life of pasta and breads, but I've found that it's getting better with time. I think my body likes me a little more since I've cut that stuff out.
    Don't let nobody try and take your soul. You're the original . --Switchfoot- The Original

    GW: 135 SW: 156.8 CW: 156.8

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    • #3
      Are you on any meds for your hypothyroidism? I have the same thing and take Synthroid. My weightloss was great with paleo. Last year I thought I knew more than my doctor and quit taking my Synthroid. My TSH went up, T4 went down and weight loss stopped. Got it all back together and weightloss started. So, yes, if you have untreated hypothyroidism, it will definitely impact your metabolism and weightloss efforts.

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      • #4
        I am, but it's over the counter stuff. I don't want to take synthroid, it didn't really do me any good when I took it. My osteopath's nurse told me that what I was taking was working because I'm in normal range.
        Don't let nobody try and take your soul. You're the original . --Switchfoot- The Original

        GW: 135 SW: 156.8 CW: 156.8

        Comment


        • #5
          Stop The Thyroid Madness

          Originally posted by Alessandra View Post
          I am, but it's over the counter stuff. I don't want to take synthroid, it didn't really do me any good when I took it. My osteopath's nurse told me that what I was taking was working because I'm in normal range.
          Hiya !

          I've got Hashimotos - I just wanted to recommend the website Stop The Thyroid Madness - I think you'll find the information very interesting - including why some people can be taking levthyroxine and have their numbers in the normal range and yet still not be well !

          I take natural thyroid - and in a LARGE dose - 240mg a day - because I have doctor who prescribes on symptoms, not just bloodwork. I've lost 30 kilos (about 70 pounds) and am still losing, but if your thyroid's not right, you'll find it very hard.

          The STTM people have a list of thyroid friendly doctors - just get in touch with them on their Forum and they'll hook you up with one in your area

          All The Best !
          Molly

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          • #6
            If you have hypothyroidism and are not treating it or are not treating it optimally, losing weight will be difficult at best and impossible at worst. Also, the longer you go un/under treated the more damage your body will experience and longer it will take for your body to heal.

            I believe I lived with hypothyroid for 10 years before it was diagnosed. I spent also spent another 8+ years undertreated. My end result-- 60+ lb weight gain, bone on bone osteoarthritis, osteopenia, sex hormone dysfunction, low ferritin , low vitamin D, a diagnosis of fibromyalgia, and being put on a boat load of pills to manage "symptoms".

            You say, "I don't want to take synthroid, it didn't really do me any good when I took it." What makes you think this? Do you have recent test results you can share?

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            • #7
              I took synthroid for 2 years while I was in the Army. My weight stayed the same during those 2 years. It was frustrating because, at the time, I thought I was eating healthy. Exercise was not by choice, it was 5 times a week, usually running. Now, I knew back then that running 2-6 miles a day 5 days a week back then wasn't doing me any good, so I would work out during my lunch break at the gym.

              I know the main reason why I put on weight when I first moved here to Amarillo was because I was eating out all the time and not taking care of my body. At that time, I wasn't on any treatment. As a matter of fact, I lost weight without any treatment to my thyroid. I stopped taking medication because it was making me tired and I didn't want to do anything. I'm not a fan of taking stuff that makes me feel worse.

              I'll have to call the doctor's office and get the numbers from the nurse. Actually, I think I might have the letter they sent me. I'll post it after work. I'll also take a look at the STTM site recommended. I'm all for learning more about this. My mom's had it for a long time. I know part of my problem is the fact that because I know she takes so many medications for her problems, I'm pretty much anti doing that myself. I take vitamins, fish oil, and a few other things, but that's it.
              Don't let nobody try and take your soul. You're the original . --Switchfoot- The Original

              GW: 135 SW: 156.8 CW: 156.8

              Comment


              • #8
                I'll get in a quick note before you post your numbers Optimal range for TSH is between 1 and 2. Most people feel better at or just below 1.

                That STTM site is a bit like Mark's Daily Apple for Thyroidies you dive in and surface after about a fortnight, furiously angry with conventional wisdom, but with the knowledge you need to take control of your own health.

                There is a link between Thyroid issues and gluten as well - 30% of people with Coeliacs have Hashimotos and 30% of people with Hashimotos have Coeliacs. I know the key for me was dropping gluten !! I was able to take my medication down by about a third.

                I'm on such a high dose because it took a year to find a Doctor prepared to do a thyroid test (despite the fact I have a 4 inch scar on my neck from the op I had when I was 15....), after I had my first child...

                ...I got "You're fat !" "You're depressed !" "You're depressed because you're fat !" I kid you not ! By the time I got a hold of a competent Physician, my thyroid gland had all but been destroyed and so I will be on a complete replacement dose of thyroid hormones for the rest of my life. Its far more expensive to get the natural thyroid, but well worth it as the Levthyroxine (T4) just didn't do anything for me....

                You're actually quite lucky being in the USA as there are tests and whatnot you can order yourself - STTM has a buyers group with a couple of testing labs - here in Oz you need a good Doctor

                You can also try "Why Do I Still Have Thyroid Symptoms? When My Lab Tests Are Normal: A Revolutionary Breakthrough In Understanding Hashimoto's Disease and Hypothyroidism" by Dr. Datis Kharrazian.

                I'd start with the STTM site and then go to the book - its quite technical and not as user-friendly as the STTM site (IMHO). You don't have to get all the supplements that he recommends - although I have to say I am taking some Indian (Ayurvedic) herbs that he recommends and have noticed a massive difference in my energy levels as well as my immune system. He (interestingly) advocates a food approach very close to the Paleo diet...

                Between the herbs, the medication and the Paleo approach I am getting better and better !

                All The Best !
                Molly
                Last edited by Mollybee; 03-12-2012, 03:38 AM. Reason: Adjust smiley :)

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                • #9
                  Thanks again for the sites to check out. I'm trying to learn as much as I can. I've been in the dark for so long about this. I figure it's sort of like what happens wtih me and music though. I find someone I like, then I check out their webpage only to find out there's so much more out there. So far, Primal has really been helping me straighten up with Gluten-Free and other such things
                  Don't let nobody try and take your soul. You're the original . --Switchfoot- The Original

                  GW: 135 SW: 156.8 CW: 156.8

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I went through a serious mourning period when I found out gluten and thyroid disease are linked. I'm over it now, but honestly, weight loss with hypothyroidism is slow, even with paleo/primal.

                    That said, my cholesterol is the best it's ever been, as are my sleep, my energy levels, and overall vitality. So while paleo hasn't been the magic ticket to weight loss (though to be fair, I have lost 10 pounds -- just stuck there for the last few months), it has been the ticket to health. It also seems to be reversing the trend of doctors prescribing me more and more synthroid. I'm now at a lower dose, plus liothyroxine.

                    What I gather is that people with hypothyroidism have to be even more strict than your typical paleo person. It sucks, but there you have it.

                    Good luck!
                    Steph
                    My Primal Meanderings

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                    • #11
                      Oh man was that pasta hard to ditch! I was raised on pasta, pasta, and more pasta! Honestly, subbing out certain vegetables like spaghetti squash have been helpful. Plus, it is one less thing I have to worry about on my grocery list. Keeps me from the inner aisles of the grocery store. I don't miss bread as much because as a child I wasn't a big fan of it. Jason's Deli, when we do go, is more than willing to serve up the sandwich without the bread or just wrap it in lettuce. I've had some strange looks here and there, but I find most places are okay without the bread. I will cave from time to time, but not as much. I find I get to enjoy my meals out more because I'm not stuffed with bread before the main meal gets there!

                      I just wish I could sort of usher my mom along some more. She's still fighting me, but I think she'll find it benefits her in the end. She's been hypothyroid probably since I was at least 8 or 9, maybe even longer. So, while I'm taking the journey to learn more, she's learning with me.
                      Don't let nobody try and take your soul. You're the original . --Switchfoot- The Original

                      GW: 135 SW: 156.8 CW: 156.8

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I had a total thyroidectomy four years ago. My blood levels of thyroid from levothyroxine are pretty good, I just had everything (including T3) checked several weeks ago. My weight fluctuated quite a bit (mostly up!) since the surgery, but it took a while to figure out my optimal dose. Weight loss was sloooooooow and miserable on a low-fat, whole-grain, calorie-restricted diet. Weight loss has been quick and effortless on primal eating. Hopefully you will have similar results! As long as you keep your thyroid levels well-regulated, it shouldn't be much of a hindrance. It only causes a problem if it's not being treated properly.

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                        • #13
                          I have been following PB now for about a month and doing fine. Weight loss is slow and steady but at least it is steady. I find that I do have to be pretty strict and have more than a few bumps in the road. I have been very cold and tired lately so am booking an appointment to get my thyroid re-checked -- just in case. I am currently taking 90 mg of dessicated thyroid ( natural). I started out 15 years ago with a doctor who insisted that I was merely depressed and should stay on anti-depressants even while I got worse and worse. He only agreed to do blood tests when I said I would go to a naturopath. When the test revealed I was hypo-thyroid he proscribed synthroid. My numbers kept going up and down and up and down, never stabilizing. I had wanted to try something else but he would not proscribe anything else. I moved and changed doctors. My new doctor was willing to let me try the natural thyroid and it worked so well for me. My levels stopped bouncing all over the place and I finally started to feel better -- just didn't lose any weight But I was following the SAD diet at that time. I switched to a vegetarian diet for a few years. But that didn't help with any weight loss and messed up my thyroid for a bit. I soon discovered that Soy was detrimental to thyroid function and now that I threw it away I am better. My new doctor actually recommended I try a low carb diet --- After a month on PB I am finally starting to lose some weight and feeling very hopeful. I think it really helps to have a good doctor who will work with you.
                          An ex junk food addict - still fighting the fight. Sometimes I'm winning, sometimes I'm losing - but I'm still fighting

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                          • #14
                            I hope you guys who think you have various diseases have been diagnosed by a doctor, not self-diagnosed by Doctor Google and unqualified guesses. If that's the case, I would go with your Doctor's advice. They're not completely stupid, believe it or not.


                            Regarding the dieting, the best way to loose weight is to cut your calorie intake down. Remember that the paleo diet is not a weight loss diet. It's a lifestyle diet. Your weight is controlled by how many calories you eat, whether that's paleo or not. If the paleo diet was a weight loss diet, everyone who is on it would be in a constant state of permanent weight-loss, which obviously does not happen.

                            I believe paleo eating is healthy, but if you want to loose weight, you have to cut calories. This is best done by calculating your BMR with one of the various online calculators, this is a good one:

                            Estimated Calorie Requirements

                            Aim for 300 calories under what you're using. 500 if you're a man.

                            Then sit down with an Excel spreadsheet or calculator and plan out your day's diet. Stick to it strictly with no nonsense "carb ups", "refeeds" or "cheat days". You may have to re-adjust once you've lost a significant amount of weight, as your calorie requirements go down with your weight.

                            If you don't want to do that, or don't believe it will work, then go ahead and try all the quick fix fad diets. Try cutting fats. Try cutting carbs, whatever. When you fail to get the results you want, come back to this and try cutting calories.
                            Last edited by captaineight; 03-13-2012, 06:52 PM.

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                            • #15
                              Hypothyroidism (and mine's been diagnosed with multiple bloodtests as well as a family history) makes weight loss extremely difficult, even when it's medicated, even when you count calories. I can starve myself on a conventional 1200 calorie diet and gain weight. I know, because I have. Multiple times.

                              And then, because you are in starvation mode, and you aren't seeing any results for your days of grumbling stomachs and hypoglycemic headaches, you bounce back and eat like crazy. I have also done this. Multiple times.

                              That said, it is easier to go at a calorie deficit when eating paleo. This morning I had to skip breakfast, and it was no big. I ate a very simple lunch of soup, and a small dinner. I probably ate right around 1200 calories, and I feel fine. I could not have done this when I was eating bread, whole grains, and pasta. Or I could, but my quality of life would be diminished, and people would be begging my cranky self to go eat a goddamn sandwich.

                              Another very good reason for people with hypothyroidism to eat paleo -- or at the very least, gluten free -- is the theory that autoimmune disease is caused and exacerbated by intestinal permeability brought on by (dunh dunh dunh!) consuming gluten. Theory? Yes! Absolutely we should keep in mind that it is still a theory. But it's the one that makes sense, and it's the ONLY explanation I've ever found in science to explain why my thyroid suddenly went kaput.

                              So, my tl;dr response. In part, I agree with you that calorie control is important, especially for hypos. But grain-fed calories versus paleo-fed calories are two completely different animals, and I say that coming from ten years of experience on every diet imaginable, and then some.
                              Last edited by onalark; 03-13-2012, 11:36 PM.
                              Steph
                              My Primal Meanderings

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