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Glucose deficency and Thyroid

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  • #16
    I've been hypothyroid for over 10 years. No hashi's or AI, just high TSH. I quit taking my Synthroid last summer after losing a ton of weight and getting seriously Primal. I was good for about 6 months, but my TSH was climbing. When I stopped in May, my TSH was .55, in Aug it was 2.5, in Jan it was 4.0.

    I restarted taking Sythroid in January, but also started taking kelp, krill oil, and brazil nuts. By mid-March, my TSH was down to .55 again, so I stopped the Synthroid on March 15th. I'm scheduled for TSH labs in 2 weeks, so I'll be able to tell if the iodine and selenium made a difference.

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    • #17
      I think if you are already hypothyroid you need to treat it with real medicine. Carbohydrates aren't medicine for hypothyroid.
      Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by Neckhammer View Post
        Good links. I don't really know were the "low carb makes you hypothyroid" crap started. Its just a new myth that won't go away.
        There is something called Euthyroid Sick Syndrome, also called Non-Thyroidal Illness Syndrome.

        "Starvation, and more precisely carbohydrate deprivation, appears to rapidly inhibit deiodination of T4 to T3 by Type 1 iodothyronine-deiodinase (ID-1) in the liver, thus inhibiting generation of T3, and preventing metabolism of reverse T3 (10). Consequently there is a drop in serum T3 and elevation of reverse T3. Since starvation induces a decrease in basal metabolic rate (11), it has been argued, teleologically, that this decrease in thyroid hormone represents an adaptive response by the body to spare calories and protein by inducing hypothyroidism." The Non-Thyroidal Illness Syndrome – Thyroid Disease Manager

        "Composition of the diet rather than reduction in the total calorie intake seems to determine the occurrence of decreased T3 generation in peripheral tissues during food deprivation. The dietary content of carbohydrate appears to be the key ingredient since as little as 50 g glucose reverses toward normal the fast-induced changes in T3 and rT3.52 Replacement of dietary carbohydrate with fat results in changes typical of starvation.39,53 Refeeding of protein may partially improve the rate of T3 generation, but the protein may be acting as a source of glucose through gluconeogenesis.54" Effects of the Environment, Chemicals and Drugs on Thyroid Function – Thyroid Disease Manager

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        • #19
          ^ make sense, as carbohydrate availability is a far more reliable indicator of starvation than fatty acid availability, given that body fat is metabolised during starvation.

          Even so, all low-calorie diets suppress thyroid function. There's an obvious reason why.
          F 5 ft 3. HW: 196 lbs. Primal SW (May 2011): 182 lbs (42% BF)... W June '12: 160 lbs (29% BF) (UK size 12, US size 8). GW: ~24% BF - have ditched the scales til I fit into a pair of UK size 10 bootcut jeans. Currently aligning towards 'The Perfect Health Diet' having swapped some fat for potatoes.

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          • #20
            If you're medicated, your TSH should be about 1.0 or slightly below. If you're as high as 2.0 or higher, you're undermedicated. How often are you checked? My endo does bloodwork every 4 months. The reason you're having symptoms is probably because you need to increase your meds.

            Make sure your doctor checks your T3 level because if you're T3 is too low, it will impede weight loss. I have Hashimoto's, and after 6 years on only T4 (Levoxyl), I started having conversion problems, and now I also take T3 (Cytomel). It's the T3 level that's critical to your functioning.

            As for weight loss, consider this. I, too, have lost a significant amount of weight on low carb (200 lbs over past few years). But after the first 80 lbs, I "stalled' until I lowered calories. I had to lower them again after 150 lbs. We tend to eat similar amounts, not realizing that our smaller bodies require much less food. Now I'm eating less than I ever imagined I would to maintain my 143lbs, but I'm not hungry, and my weight is stable--so that's the amount my body requires. Alas, my 'head' would like to feed me a lot more:-)

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            • #21
              Originally posted by ivelosttheweight View Post
              I had juvenile RA that went into remission in my earlier twenties but I still have the swelling, inflammation and signs of arthritis (on xrays) along with elevated SED and CRP. But it hasn't been degenerating or damaging my joints (didn't much when I was young either) according to xrays or worsening or having any other auto-immune effect that I know of.

              My rheumatologist said she's often sees this often with JRA patients as they grow older.
              I have the same thing - my doctor calls it non-erosive Rheumatoid arthritis. I am greatly improved with a strict elimination of nightshades (still require some drugs though).
              Last edited by jammies; 04-15-2012, 04:45 PM.
              Using low lectin/nightshade free primal to control autoimmune arthritis. (And lost 50 lbs along the way )

              http://www.krispin.com/lectin.html

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              • #22
                You could raise your carbs up to 100 grams or so a couple days a week and maintain your low carb ways the rest of the time. I would use sweet potatoes, squash, and some fruit to do it. White rice is considered a safe starch, but it did cause weight gain for me when I introduced it.

                Also, in your case I would make sure to get foods that provide rare nutrients:

                1. Brazil nuts - great source of selenium - important for thyroid.
                2. Liver - amazing superfood with piles of vitamins
                3. Sea vegetables - natural source of iodine.
                4. Bone marrow and bone stocks.
                5. Oysters for zinc.

                Good luck
                Using low lectin/nightshade free primal to control autoimmune arthritis. (And lost 50 lbs along the way )

                http://www.krispin.com/lectin.html

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by jammies View Post
                  You could raise your carbs up to 100 grams or so a couple days a week and maintain your low carb ways the rest of the time. I would use sweet potatoes, squash, and some fruit to do it. White rice is considered a safe starch, but it did cause weight gain for me when I introduced it.

                  Also, in your case I would make sure to get foods that provide rare nutrients:

                  1. Brazil nuts - great source of selenium - important for thyroid.
                  2. Liver - amazing superfood with piles of vitamins
                  3. Sea vegetables - natural source of iodine.
                  4. Bone marrow and bone stocks.
                  5. Oysters for zinc.

                  Good luck
                  Thanks, I'm going to try most of this. I'm allergic to oysters but will aim for more foods with zinc. Not fond of liver but may try and find a way to eat it and work it in knowing it's good for me. Good to know on the rice. I think I will aim for sweet potatoes, starchier squash, perhaps peas and lima beans, and fruit.

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by ivelosttheweight View Post
                    Thanks, I'm going to try most of this. I'm allergic to oysters but will aim for more foods with zinc. Not fond of liver but may try and find a way to eat it and work it in knowing it's good for me. Good to know on the rice. I think I will aim for sweet potatoes, starchier squash, perhaps peas and lima beans, and fruit.
                    Sweet potatoes are a good way to go. And don't be afraid of other fruits besides berries.

                    Grind up liver very fine and mix it into meatballs or meatloaf. That's a good way to "hide" it in your food and still get the nutrients.

                    If your TSH is 2.5, you'll still be symptomatic. That's too high. You may want to talk to your doc about upping your dose slightly. Dosing is related to bodyweight, too, so remember that gaining or losing weight will likely mean you need to change your dose. Having your doc do a full panel is a good idea. I asked for one last time and we discovered that while my TSH was ok, my T3 and T4 were on the low end of the range, which is why I was losing hair and energy.

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                    • #25
                      Just a minor update. Doctor is out of the office but I got the office to give me some of my results. Note I do get these tests regularly anyway and am monitored, but we're looking to see if I need adjustments to my medication again in light of my plateau/symptoms and what I suspect may be glucose deficiency (which I can fix through eating).

                      TSH: 3.59 (a little high)
                      T4: 1.4 (in range I think)
                      Total T3: 75 (low) - not sure if they tested free T3/rT3 tho sigh
                      TPO: 37 - high which means I have Hashi's. I've always been high here.

                      I was more looking for the T3 numbers but not sure they tested it as I believe I've been undereating my carbs and was hoping this would be an indicator of this, but hard to tell based on the limited numbers. I will get my own copy of the results, but need to wait for the doctor to review them first.

                      So this week, I did up the carbs and lower the fat on my workout days (a mini carb-refeed) and didn't gain weight and may have lost a pound or two, not sure yet (I officially weigh weekly). A little hunger but no other side effects. If anything, I found I had less fatigue during and after my workout (weights). I ended up with a 15 hour fast due to fasting for bloodwork and felt terrible that day (hypoglycemia?) with fatigue, headache, confusion, etc. I've never had hypoglycemia before so not sure if that is what I was experiencing. I believe it's related to being too low carb (25-30 net carbs) for too long and my suspected glucose deficiency.

                      Regardless what the doctor recommends (probably adjusting my thyroid medication dose), I am going to up the carbs, possibly keep doing the mini carb-refeeds on my workout days, and look at many of the other suggestions you've made here to start incorporating them into my eating and routine.

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                      • #26
                        Are you drinking a LOT of "low carb" beer? I assume you're referring to stuff like MGD and Michelob Ultra? Frankly, I'd cut it all out. Mainstream low alcohol beers from Miller/Coors/Bud, etc are full of crap that doesn't belong in beer. If you're consuming on a daily basis, that may be your problem. Excess nuts could be a problem as well as excess fructose intake from fruit.

                        Atkins done properly is pretty similar to Paleo, at least at maintenance levels. I hit a bad plateau many years ago when I lost a ton of weight on Atkins. Eliminating nuts and backing off from my insane amount of exercise solved my particular problem.

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by Catharsis View Post
                          Are you drinking a LOT of "low carb" beer? I assume you're referring to stuff like MGD and Michelob Ultra? Frankly, I'd cut it all out. Mainstream low alcohol beers from Miller/Coors/Bud, etc are full of crap that doesn't belong in beer. If you're consuming on a daily basis, that may be your problem. Excess nuts could be a problem as well as excess fructose intake from fruit.

                          Atkins done properly is pretty similar to Paleo, at least at maintenance levels. I hit a bad plateau many years ago when I lost a ton of weight on Atkins. Eliminating nuts and backing off from my insane amount of exercise solved my particular problem.
                          I don't actually, I might have an Ultra once a month or so, if that. Not alot of fruit or nuts either except for almonds that I just added a bit more lately (almond milk and my pre-workout snack). I cut out most nuts about a year ago and that broke a stall I was in. The almonds (as opposed to mixed nuts) have never stalled me along my way, but I never have more than 1 oz per day a couple times a week tops. Fruits are only 4 oz. berries 2x a week, but I am going to add apples in on my workout days (one small apple tops).

                          I do drink a glass of wine once a week (pinot grigio) but not every week but that's it for alcohol.

                          I just upped my exercise (adding weights "lift heavy things") about a month ago which is when I noticed an increase in fatigue and thyroid symptoms that makes me suspect glucose deficiency. I don't overexercise I don't think, walking 1 mile 2-3x a week, and 2 weight days with rest days between. I'm overall more active than I was before I lost the 175 lbs, walking faster and more, taking the stairs, out and doing things etc.

                          I suspect I've hit a spot in my journey that I can now handle and need more carbs to lose the remaining body fat%. My T3 seems a bit low and my LDL was higher than previous on my cholesterol screen a few weeks ago that hint at this, plus how I'm feeling physically (fatigue, dry skin, cold).

                          Just wondering if anyone else has any thoughts on this as I haven't run into many folks that have lost a large amount weight low carb with thyroid issues like I have. Dr. Jaminet talks about this the most, from what I've been able to find, and encourages a much higher carb level than other low carb diets. Like most of my journey, it's going to be a "try it and see" thing, I think, which I'm going to work on by adding more carbs a week at a time, especially around my workouts.

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                          • #28
                            If you're medicated, your TSH should be about 1.0 or slightly below. If you're as high as 2.0 or higher, you're undermedicated. How often are you checked? My endo does bloodwork every 4 months. The reason you're having symptoms is probably because you need to increase your meds.

                            Make sure your doctor checks your T3 level because if you're T3 is too low, it will impede weight loss. I have Hashimoto's, and after 6 years on only T4 (Levoxyl), I started having conversion problems, and now I also take T3 (Cytomel). It's the T3 level that's critical to your functioning.

                            As for weight loss, consider this. I, too, have lost a significant amount of weight on low carb (200 lbs over past few years). But after the first 80 lbs, I "stalled' until I lowered calories. I had to lower them again after 150 lbs. We tend to eat similar amounts, not realizing that our smaller bodies require much less food. Now I'm eating less than I ever imagined I would to maintain my 143lbs, but I'm not hungry, and my weight is stable--so that's the amount my body requires. Alas, my 'head' would like to feed me a lot more:-)
                            good info thanks!
                            I'm too stubborn to give up so I keep on trying.

                            You're never going to get to the top of the stairs if you don't walk up them.

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                            • #29
                              With your latest TSH and T3 numbers, you can forget about anything you eat or drink helping you with weight loss! You are seriously undermedicated, and until your thyroid hormone levels are optimized, you will continue to have problems.

                              Anyone who is hypothyroid needs to be regularly checked--my own 'changes' in hormone level happened suddenly and without any change in my WOE. I have Hashimoto's, and my endo says that the progression of the disease is unpredictable--which is why it's critical to be regularly checked.

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by emmie View Post
                                I have Hashimoto's, and my endo says that the progression of the disease is unpredictable--which is why it's critical to be regularly checked.
                                I might throw in weight loss takes a back seat with this. Get your gut healed and autoimmune condition under control. Find a doctor who is willing to work with you on that rather than just managing your dose. Otherwise you just find yourself with the more and more destruction of your thyroid. Functional medicine practitioners and other holistic providers would be my go to.
                                Last edited by Neckhammer; 04-22-2012, 08:50 AM.

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