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  1. #1
    Heidi's Avatar
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    Increased TSH Level

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    I was spring cleaning and came across my blood work results from last year. I noticed that my TSH level was at 2.54. Compared that with my blood work results from 3 years earlier, and my TSH was at 2.04.

    2.54 is still within the normal range, but should I be concerned about the 0.5 increase within 3 years? Maybe something to bring to the doctor's attention during my next physical?
    I'm retraining and strengthening my taste buds, one primal meal at a time.

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    Pebbles67's Avatar
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    Mine went up from 1.07 to 2.20 in one year, but my Dr. was not concerned. I had to force her to order the whole thyroid panel. Get it tested, it couldn't hurt and may give you useful information.

    I wanted mine tested due to a long list of hypothyroid symptoms I was experiencing. It turns out that my thyroid is fine. My problems arose from being VLC for too long, which can turn down thyroid function to a dangerous point for some people.

  3. #3
    Heidi's Avatar
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    Guess it can't hurt to ask the doc next time if she'll run some more tests. It's pretty hard to get her to take concerns like that seriously, though. Wish I had a better health insurance with more doctors to choose from in my area.

    That's interesting about the VLC. Didn't know it could mess with the thyroid. Not like I have to worry about that. Staying in near the 100g carb range is enough of a feat for me.
    I'm retraining and strengthening my taste buds, one primal meal at a time.

  4. #4
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    From: Physiology of the Hypothalamic-Pituitary Thyroidal System – Thyroid Disease Manager
    "TSH secretion in humans is pulsatile... The maximal serum TSH is reached between 21:00 and 02:00 hours and the difference between the afternoon nadir and peak TSH concentrations is 1 to 3 mU/L..."

    With this information, the .50 difference in your TSH is within the normal range for daily fluctuation. The more important questions are,
    1. Are you having symptoms of low thyroid functions?
    2. Is your vitamin D level optimal?
    3. Is your ferritin level optimal?
    4. Are you getting 200mcg selenium/day?
    5. Are you eating VLC (<50 grams/day)?
    6. Have you had free T4, free T3, antibodies (TPOab, TgAb), reverse T3 tested?

  5. #5
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    Just a followup to the previous response and some further information about TSH values fluctuating:

    Serum TSH variability in normal individual... [W V Med J. 2004 Jul-Aug] - PubMed - NCBI

    Early morning fasting serum TSH levels were compared to late morning non-fasting serum TSH levels in the same patients on the same day. The late morning non-fasting TSH tests declined in 97 of 100 subjects by an average of 26.39% when compared to early morning, fasting, TSH test results.
    That 26% reduction really stood out to me.

    I had my TSH tested a little over a year ago (early morning, fasted) at ~ 7.7 uIU/mL and I was classified as subclinical hypothyroid. At the time I was about 6 months into my primal diet, eating far lower carb levels than I ever had in my life -- about 50g/day probably. I had also switched from iodized salt to non-iodized sea salt a few months before the blood test.

    After the test I did some research and decided to raise my carb level up a bit, and add back in the iodized salt. About 3 months after my initial test I was re-tested late morning after eating breakfast. This time I was at 5.4 uIU/mL.

    I continued eating a moderate carb diet and continued consuming iodized salt. About 1 year after the original test I was tested again (late morning, after breakfast) and my level was 3.1 uIU/mL.

    I don't know how much of my reduction in TSH is due to time of day it was tested (likely explains the difference between the first two readings), or how much can be attributed to diet (carbs & iodized salt).

    A fluctuation from 2.04->2.54 wouldn't be surprising over a period of a couple hours, not to mention three years. If your levels continue to go up, I'd consider a LC diet to be one possible suspect (assuming you're eating lower carb than you used to pre-primal).

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    jakeb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Big L View Post
    Just a followup to the previous response and some further information about TSH values fluctuating:

    Serum TSH variability in normal individual... [W V Med J. 2004 Jul-Aug] - PubMed - NCBI



    That 26% reduction really stood out to me.

    I had my TSH tested a little over a year ago (early morning, fasted) at ~ 7.7 uIU/mL and I was classified as subclinical hypothyroid. At the time I was about 6 months into my primal diet, eating far lower carb levels than I ever had in my life -- about 50g/day probably. I had also switched from iodized salt to non-iodized sea salt a few months before the blood test.

    After the test I did some research and decided to raise my carb level up a bit, and add back in the iodized salt. About 3 months after my initial test I was re-tested late morning after eating breakfast. This time I was at 5.4 uIU/mL.

    I continued eating a moderate carb diet and continued consuming iodized salt. About 1 year after the original test I was tested again (late morning, after breakfast) and my level was 3.1 uIU/mL.

    I don't know how much of my reduction in TSH is due to time of day it was tested (likely explains the difference between the first two readings), or how much can be attributed to diet (carbs & iodized salt).

    A fluctuation from 2.04->2.54 wouldn't be surprising over a period of a couple hours, not to mention three years. If your levels continue to go up, I'd consider a LC diet to be one possible suspect (assuming you're eating lower carb than you used to pre-primal).
    Could you expand a bit on how you raised your carb level?

    I just got a test back with TSH at about 6.1. Going to get the whole panel in six weeks, but figured I'd first get on track with more seafood, Vit D, and other bits that are often suggested to bring TSH to a normal range. I'm definitely very low carb though ...

  7. #7
    Urban Forager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jakeb View Post
    Could you expand a bit on how you raised your carb level?

    I just got a test back with TSH at about 6.1. Going to get the whole panel in six weeks, but figured I'd first get on track with more seafood, Vit D, and other bits that are often suggested to bring TSH to a normal range. I'm definitely very low carb though ...
    You could just add in some fruit and sweet potatoes. Are you taking Selenium? It's vital for thyroid function.
    Life is death. We all take turns. It's sacred to eat during our turn and be eaten when our turn is over. RichMahogany.

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