How to Boost Thyroid Function Naturally

Natural Ways to Boost Thyroid Function with diet and supplements

I was recently diagnosed with Hashimotos Thyroiditis, an autoimmune condition where the body attacks the thyroid. (The picture above is a “happy thyroid” stuffed cushion from my doctor).

I suspected that I had thyroid problems for years and finally found a doctor who specializes in the autoimmune version of the disease (which presents much differently than traditional thyroid problems). Unlike basic hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism, Hashimotos patients can waver between having an overactive thyroid and having an under-active one.

I was diagnosed through a series of blood tests and a thyroid ultrasound. I have several nodules on my thyroid which will be monitored to make sure they don’t get any bigger.

I’ve made some health changes since finding out about Hashimotos and while I am also taking a low-dose thyroid medication (temporarily) I’ve also made some diet and lifestyle changes that were really helpful even before I started the medication and I wanted to share these.

I’m not a doctor and I don’t play one on the internet. This post is sharing my personal experience for information purposes only and should not be taken as medical advice.

No Iodine

One change I made immediately once I found out about my Hashimotos was to stop taking iodine. Iodine can be helpful for those with regular hypothyroidism but it can be fuel on a fire for those with autoimmune thyroid problems. Chris Kresser explains why:

“Because increased iodine intake, especially in supplement form, can increase the autoimmune attack on the thyroid. Iodine reduces the activity of an enzyme called thyroid peroxidase (TPO). TPO is required for proper thyroid hormone production.

On the other hand, restricting intake of iodine can reverse hypothyroidism. In one study, 78% of patients with Hashimoto’s regained normal thyroid function with iodine restriction alone.”

As I talked about in this past post, there is some evidence that iodine may not be as harmful in the presence of enough selenium. Since there is still a lot of evidence on the negative effects of iodine with Hashimotos, I’m still avoiding it and consuming selenium rich foods.

Some research suggests that simply lowering iodine alone may help put autoimmune thyroid problems in to remission.

Autoimmune Diet

I was already eating a healthy diet before finding out about Hashimotos: I avoid grains, vegetable oils, soy, sugar and all processed foods.

I found that some additional dietary changes were incredibly helpful in reducing my thyroid symptoms:

  • I removed other foods that can be inflammatory, including nightshades (tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, etc), eggs, nuts and seeds,  dairy, natural sweeteners, and the obvious ones like grains and soy. Gluten and soy are completely out for me now since they can both make Hashimotos much worse.
  • I focus on eating quality meats and fish, lots of green leafy vegetables cooked in coconut oil, some fruits (mainly berries) and bone broth at every meal (for the minerals and the gelatin.
  • I consume at LEAST 4 tablespoons of coconut oil per day. Coconut oil can be helpful to the thyroid because of its high content of medium chain fatty acids and lauric acid. (I didn’t gain weight doing this and actually lost weight)
  • I make sure that even with the additional dietary restrictions, I’m consuming enough carbs from starchy vegetables and fruit as a really low-carb diet can be hard on the thyroid.

Supplements

I believe it is best to get nutrients from food whenever possible, but I had depleted levels of some nutrients and needed specific supplements to help improve my levels. Diet changes and adding these supplements made a tremendous difference in reducing my symptoms (skin issues, fatigue, etc) and I notice when I don’t take it. Here’s what worked for me:

  • Glutathione each morning (I use this one) under my tongue. Glutathione is a strong antioxidant that helps balance hormones and boost the immune system . I definitely notice a difference when I don’t take it.
  • Vitamin D – Even though I spend a lot of time in the sun during the summer and take Vitamin D during the winter, I was deficient in Vitamin D. This is relatively common with thyroid problems and I’m using a Vitamin D Serum to help bring my levels up. Vitamin D is also necessary to help transport thyroid hormone in to cells.
  • Vitamin C – My cortisol was high at night, indicating adrenal stress so I added a quality Vitamin C with each meal since Vitamin C is helpful in reducing adrenal stress.
  • Probiotics- I was already consuming probiotic rich foods and taking a probiotic supplement, I started consuming even more probiotics as gut health is important for dealing with any autoimmune disease. I take these now daily.

Lifestyle

I was already trying to do these things but I made them an absolute priority once I found out about my thyroid condition:

  • Sleeping by 10 PM every night – In all honesty, this still doesn’t happen all the time with kids, but I’m definitely trying.
  • Active relaxation – Making a point to do things that are relaxing and stress-reducing to me.
  • Rebounding – I talked before about this, but I spend a few minutes a day jumping on a mini-trampoline to get my blood flowing and increase lymph drainage.
  • Exercise – I’m also making exercise a priority, but concentrating on low-impact exercise like walking and weight training rather than extended cardio.

These are factors that have been incredibly helpful to me in reducing the symptoms of my Hashimotos autoimmune disease. It was such a long road to get a diagnosis and I saw several doctors before finally getting answers.

These changes made a big difference for me even before I started taking the thyroid medication, and many of these factors are helpful to those with autoimmune disease.

Have you tried any of these things to help boost your thyroid? What other changes have you made that has helped? Share below!

Tips to help boost thyroid function naturally with diet and supplements like coconut oil and vitamin D-even helpful with autoimmune thyroid disease.

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Reader Comments

  1. Katie,

    I love your blog and appreciate all of the work you put into it. I also have Hashimotos and am struggling with it. I have one question for you regarding coconut oil and your stance on no iodine. If I am remembering this correctly, way back when I started using Tropical Traditions Gold Label Coconut Oil it seemed to me that one of the benefits Tropical Traditions espoused as to why their product was / is do much more nutritious than others is that in lab breakdown it was revealed that theirs was much higher in iodine than other brands.

    Not trying to be a bee in your bonnet over this, but honestly interested in your opinion about this.

    Thanks again for all the work you do for the benefit of all of us.

    Affectionately,

    Kelly

    • From what I’ve seen, it is still low enough to be safe (lower than seafood would be, and many people with hashis can still consume seafood) but great point. I will look in to this more 🙂

      • Hi Katie,

        I love your emails and info. Do you have anything to offer naturally food wise of or supplemental wise that will increase T3 levels. I need to increase my T-3.
        The normal range is 80-200 and mine is 82. I do NOT have a Thyroid. It was removed 4 yrs ago. I believe I still have my parathyroid. I’ve been on Synthroid thyroid replacement medicine all this time however a couple months ago I gave Armour thyroid a try but after one week I was a mess and had to get right back on the Synthroid. I’m fully aware that your are not a doctor but because you’re so very knowledgeable in health I thought I would ask you if you know what foods or supplements would help me get my t3 up.

        Just in case you want to know where my T4 is the ranges for T4 are 0.7 – 1.5. My test results say I’m at 1.0 So my range is okay for my T4. It’s just my T3 that’s low.

        Thank you,
        Tricia

        • I read somewhere that with T4 in the upper part of the range and T3 in the lower it is an indication that the liver is not converting it properly. Perhaps a liver cleanse is in order? I am not a doctor, so this is just info I am passing along. I cannot get the VA to even measure my T4/T3 levels. They also refuse to measure my Oxidized LDL or even look into why some profess that to be the arterial scarring issue. Maybe next decade they will advance to the point of even having a homeopath or naturopath on their staff.

          • I’m a veteran too and it would be nice if the VA would try some different approaches to health problems besides just throwing more medication at us. Like most people I enjoy getting a massage but sometimes they’re not affordable and it would be nice if the VA would offer that as well. The benefits of massage have been shown time and time again to be beneficial for mental health as well as overall health.

    • I also have Hashimotos and have found out that flouride that is in our water is not good for us. And in our tooth paste.

      Robin

      • I also found this to be true so I’ve used Toms natural floride free for years… Also Toms deodorant 🙂

      • I switched to Neem Toothpaste as it contains neither fluoride nor carrageenan. Available on Amazon.

    • This article is informative, however, I would point out that other tissue in the body must have a good supply of Iodine and particularly gonads; ovaries and testes; and breast tissue. The bigger the breasts the greater supply of Iodine is needed. Iodine also helps the body fight the many cancers that form throughout our lives, it causes apoptosis that is suicide of cancer cells.
      I also have Hashimotos but as a vegetarian get low levels of Iodine and therefore I supplement occasionally with Iodine. If I don’t I notice I get very tender breasts and lymph nodes under my arms; this resolves once I’ve taken the Iodine. It is a fine balancing act because if I take too much I become hypothyroid, yes.
      Adrenal glands need Vitamin C in fairly large doses but actually they also need Vitamin E and Vitamin B particularly B5 and magnesium too. These should all be taken to support the adrenal glands. Herbs such as Ashwagandha are adaptogenic and support the good health of adrenal glands too. If there is a sex hormone imbalance it is likely you need to supplement with Pregnenolone.
      Once I had done this I was, for the very first time in YEARS, able to get a good nights sleep. The reason for waking is due to imbalance of Cortisol and the resulting Hypoglycaemia.
      There is no magic pill and all this takes time to kick in but then suddenly you will realise how much better you are feeling. Despite my door bell ringing I used to jump out of my skin when I opened it and someone was there! Giving them a fright too!!

      • I also wonder about natural sources of iodine like kelp. Dh has hashimoto’s and I’m hypothyroid but haven’t been tested yet to know whether I have it. I’m fairly sure I have auto-immune symptoms and was diagnosed with what looked like it could be lupus many years ago. I’ve been mostly gluten free for years and now dh is too. But we were taking kelp capsules and don’t know now whether to take them or not. One of the raw thyroid supplements on the Internet by Natural Sources has kelp in it. It would be a less expensive option for us than what we’re taking now, which is Standard Process supplements for thyroid. We also test as having adrenal fatigue when we do the Ragland test. Dh’s blood pressure drops around 30 points when he stands up, which is kinda scary. We don’t currently go to an integrative physician and haven’t had blood tests done in a while. I appreciate all the information you give on this condition and other health issues.

  2. Sorry to hear your diagnosis – but thanks for all the info the supplement info is great – definitely want to boost my vitamin c intake to help my adrenals! Such a good post as always!

  3. I gave up grains, sugar, soy, and dairy in January, and have yet to see any changes. Giving up dairy, interestingly, made it much easier to stay off the sugar and grains. I have no desire for those, at all, now. (I guess that, in itself, *is* a big change!) The thought of giving up eggs and nightshades, too, makes me cringe & weep! I’d love to see a few days of your menus to see what you’re eating.

    • i’ve never given up dairy (though i don’t consume much – yogurt, some cheese, and organic creamer in my daily cuppa) but have found that when i reduce or eliminate wheat-based grains, my sugar cravings go away, nearly completely (and i would say i normally have a big sweet tooth) so that might be what you’re experiencing, though if you’re consuming a lot of milk sugar, it could be having the same effect, as i believe that reducing either one (sugars or simple carbs which the body converts to sugar anyway) reduces cravings for the other. i haven’t any plans to give up eggs but do limit nightshades, as well.

      • You sound like you have a yeast infection; causing sugar cravings. You must treat the yeast infection – you may not realise you have one and there is no good 100% test. Use an anti candida diet and supplements and possibly a product called Lufenuron. I have used Lufenuron for several years now and feel I am finally ontop of my yeast infection but take it once a year now just to make sure I stay on top.
        Yeast plays havoc with both the adrenal glands and the thyroid and you must treat the yeast to get on top of low functioning thyroid and adrenal glands or low hormones. There is plenty of info out there to help you.

    • I agree! I would love to see your typical menu. What do you eat for breatkfast??

  4. Good luck with these big changes, Katie! Thanks for sharing. Tell us more about the gut health connection to the immune system. I added a probiotic to my daily supplements after a chronic winter cold.

  5. Thank you for this very helpful post. My daughter is rebounding as I write this. 🙂

    If you don’t mind sharing–what were your symptoms? How is the autoimmune version different?

    Also curious why you take a vitamin D serum instead of a pill?

    To continued healing,
    Julie

    • I actually felt swelling in my thyroid and had symptoms like a skin rash, fatigue, trouble waking up in the morning, et

      • Oh gosh, everyday I wake up I am already exhaustedddr

  6. Hi!
    Have you heard about this page: http://www.stopthethyroidmadness.com/. My friend with Hashimotos got hyper on synthetic medication, but tolerates the natural one much better… That, among other things, is on this page… It also encourages people to medicate according to their symptoms, in stead of their lab results. I think it’s really interesteing!

    Do you know anything about why you get this disease? I thought you were kind of safe(r) when you eat natural foods and limit chemicals. But, when I heard you got it, that made me think again. I know there are more Hashimotos now than before, and connected that to the western way of life, but it seems wrong when I read about you, since you’re so dedicated. Is it just that its more often diagnosed? Do you know?

    I’m from Sweden, so I apologize if my english is a little off…

    • It is estimated that 1 in 12 people have an autoimmune disease now. There are many theories (increased EMFs in the air, lack of good sleep, toxin exposure, etc). I think that mine is largely due to: family history of it and horrible diet in high school (along with a lot of stress). The good news is that now that I know the problem I am seeing dramatic improvements.

      • YES, have heard of and been to the website Stop The Thyroid Madness, excellent source of information for anyone with thyroid issues. My question is this….how do you find a doctor that actually prescribes to your symptoms and NOT according to the lab results??? Am having a devil of a time finding one. How did you find your doctor Katie?

        • A referral from a friend, but I had to fly cross country to meet him the first time. It is tough. I’m working on finding resources to help others find good doctors near them

        • I had this issue, also. Look up “functional medicine” doctors. They are typically the kind that do this. Not always covered on insurance, and read the philosophy of their office on their website, but this is the type of dr you are looking for. (I didn’t know they even existed until a few months ago.)

        • Look up your nearest integrative Doctor

      • I want to add some possible risk factors that are needed to be checked:
        exposure to low level radioactive iodine (I-131)
        harmful ingredients in makeup product
        birth control pills
        this may explain why women are mainly suffering from this condition

    • Some people find difficulty with animal products such as Natural Desiccated Thyroid as it increases the auto-immunity. However, I have Hashimotos and take NDT with great success. I do though also need (synthetic) additional T3. You have to find the best treatment for you by trying different ones. Some people swear by synthetic T4 and that is fine if it works for you.

      This disorder is a complex one and many Drs do not fully understand the issues. The only way to get the best treatment besides finding a sympathetic Dr is to Educate yourself. Education Education Education….and there is no excuse not to these days as we have a world library on our home computers with enough information to sink the Titanic.

  7. I suspect I might have thyroid issues too. It’s surprising though that you have five kids, cause autoimmune thyroid issues I heard can cause great difficulty in conceiving… Not in your case I guess! 🙂

    • I have Graves disease, which is also (as I understand it) an autoimmune issue causing hyperactive thyroid. I have very similar symptoms as Katie, and I got pregnant while my hormones were all out of whack, too. After the birth, my thyroid went completely crazy and I’m trying to get my symptoms back under control. I also have shakiness, fatigue, skin issues & rashes, hair issues, enlarged thyroid gland, etc. Fun times. But thanks, Katie, for the info on supplements! I’ll start adding vitamin C and glutathione. There’s conflicting info on iodine, and I noticed an increase in my thyroid size when I was supplementing with it so I avoid it like the plague. I, too, am deficient in almost all vitamins & minerals. Very interesting.

  8. I am really interested in all this stuff. And I have been reading a lot about natural yeast, (that they used before they came out with the powdered yeast as we know it today) They say that the natural yeast due to the length of time it must sit to actually make the bread rise, that it ends up breaking down the phytic acid. Do you have any information on this?

    • It does reduce it, but for many people with autoimmune disease, any gluten exposure will cause a problem

  9. You’ve had a pretty clean diet for a couple years now and still having problems. Doesn’t give me hope at all lol.

    • But I saw dramatic improvement in only a month of an autoimmune diet and can now tolerate some of those foods in small amounts. It isn’t forever 🙂 Best of luck and don’t lose hope!

      • Great to know! I’ve been on gaps since January but looks like I’ll try a diet that is more strick, I love my eggs and butter

  10. Thank you this has been very helpful. I already have cut soy, red meat, most milk products, and other things as well. I work out for 1 hour a day but I still see no difference. I have been trying the red raspberry tea leaf.

    • There is red meat and then there is red meat. Free range, grass fed beef or buffalo has high levels of omega 3 compared to farmed beef that are fed an unnatural diet of GMO corn, animal parts, growth hormones, antibiotics and restricted exercise. Fortunately here in Kentucky there is lots of grass and thus fairly easy access to “good” red meat vs “bad” red meat from one’s supermarket. We get ours from St. Catherine’s farms.

  11. No eggs? What do you eat for breakfast?….more dinner?
    ugh. I’ve battled with low thyroid for 20 years and have found the paleo diet alone to help tremendously. I can’t imagine giving up my salsa on eggs in the morning though….thanks for all your info. I really enjoy your suggestions.

    • Like my “red meat” comment above, there are “healthy eggs” from organic, free range, no corn, roosting chickens and there are “unhealthy eggs” from unhealthy chickens raised in cages too small to even stretch, fed GMO corn, pumped with antibiotics, etc. Eggs were probably one of the first proteins available to early man that they didn’t have to chase off the predators to obtain.

  12. There may be a connection with too high consumption of muscle meat with too little or no grain in the diet prior to diagnosis.

  13. Thanks for posting this! I too have Hashimoto’s and have been desperate to come off synthroid but have been told you can’t cure it naturally. I firmly believe God provided us with the means to heal our bodies through proper nutrition which is how I stumbled onto your site. The meal restrictions you mention sound daunting (especially considering I am a picky eater already) and don’t leave much left to eat. However, if it works I am willing to try. I was just wondering if you are familiar with nascent iodine? I have been told it is critical for improving thyroid function- even for Hashimoto. Have you heard anything about it?

    • I’ve heard of it and used it before my diagnosis but was told by my doc in no uncertain terms to avoid it completely.

      • I think everyone is slightly different and whilst some may not tolerate certain things others can. It is a case of trial and error….frustrating as that is for us. when you’re ill you don’t feel you have the energy for trial and error. In the case of long term thyroid problems you take little steps in your journey to better health…in my case this has taken several years….I promise it is worth it. You can feel better, don’t give up.

        Whilst I can tell people what I do it may not be appropriate or necessary for them to follow that regime exactly for them to feel well. The point of sharing is that someone may find something you do is helpful but other stuff you do is not.

        I for example can tolerate small amounts of dairy, grains and eggs whilst I know others cannot.

        One thing that has been a major help has been Vitamin B12 – injections in my case. Most low thyroid hormone people have low B12 and it must be replaced; whilst we need very minute amounts we must have it. Sublingual is ok if you can’t get injections.

        So far as SOY is concerned besides being goitrogenic; slows thyroid function; it is a poison to humans unless fermented. If you offer it to animals most won’t touch it!
        I don’t rule anything out unless I try it and KNOW it doesn’t suit ME.

  14. Hi Kate!
    Thank you so much for sharing all of this. My son just turned six and has been a type one diabetic since he was eight months old. We took him in for blood testing this last fall and he has the start of Hashimotos. We increased his vitamin D, he is now taking a probiotic, and we eat grain free, dairy free, sugar free. We go in for more testing this week. You have no idea how much your posts have helped me understand Hashimotos and what will help it. I look forward to more! Thanks again!

  15. I also have Hashimoto’s. I’ve known since last november. In all my research i do…i can’t seem to find out what are the differences between anti-tg and anti-tpo. I notice most people have high anti-tpo. mine is anti-tg of 320 and only 14 anti-tpo. do you know anything about this? have you been able to lower your antibodies? also, i’m curious why you are on a low dose med only temporarily? i haven’t got any medicine yet. i am trying to lower my antibodies as much as i can.
    My hair is a big problem for me…so i’m thinking maybe desiccated hormone would help.

    • What is the benefit of trying to lower antibodies before administering medication? Surely you can do both simultaneously?

  16. Thanks for posting this. I was just diagnosed with Hashimotos a few weeks ago. I have been slightly discouraged bc I already eat super clean (mostly paleo) and can’t think of life without eggs, nuts, tomatoes, peppers, etc… Part of me wonders if dietary changes are really enough to heal the thyroid. Please keep posting about your journey. I really enjoy the resources you link to.

  17. Hi Katie! I’ve been reading here for a while but had yet to comment. I too have hashimotos and was diagnosed two years ago. Since then I went into complete remission by eliminating the top offenders on my allergy test. I took out gluten, dairy, nutritional yeast, and seafood. 6 months ago when preparing to get pregnant again I started taking cod liver oil daily. Went back in for a thyroid workup and my hashimotos antibodies were off the charts high! I’ve learned that for my body, regular sea food simply isn’t an option. Also, even though I was taking cod liver oil daily my vitamin D was still ridiculously low too. I will probably have to supplement all my life, even in summer. So what I’m wondering is, do you know what your top offenders are? It may help to be tested! I love gaps and autoimmune paleo but sometimes I think they can make your life miserable, lol! I would have never guessed my body had such an inflammatory response to sea food. It fuels my autoimmunity. Maybe yours is something as simple as dairy (I’ve known many who found dairy to be their worst offender and now test completely negative for hashimotos). Anyways, best of luck to you!

    • What “testing” did you do for food sensitivities like seafood?

    • How were you tested to find out your top offenders? Im assuming its more a sensitivity than an allergy?

      • My doc did an IGE and IGG allergy test. My seafood allergy was not an intollerance though, it was a true allergy. More specifically shellfish, though all fish oils seem to influence my TPO ab as well. Best of luck!

    • Allergies come about when the adrenal gland function is compromised. I have never been an allergic type of person through my life. However, due to a failure by Drs to diagnose low thyroid function for at least 30years, my adrenals were struggling too. I had several occasions when I ate foods I had previously eaten without any problems, but they caused me to attend the emergency department due to overwhelming allergic reactions.

      Once i found an educated Dr, I got treatment t=for both thyroid and adrenal glands….I no longer get those reactions when eating those and other foods. Indeed I am back to how I was, with no allergic reactions to anything anymore.

      The adrenal glands are often ignored but should be treated for at least two weeks before taking thyroid meds. If you already take thyroid meds but have not treated your adrenals then reduce the amount of thyroid meds or stop completely whilst for two weeks you start adrenal support, then increase thyroid meds gently, (as tolerated). Sometimes you don’t need as much thyroid medication after adrenal glands are supported and what you do take is making more difference. Adrenal glands should not be overlooked.

      One reason thyroid sufferers get chronic inflammation is due to imbalance in cortisol levels. Cortisol in a natural anti-inflammatory. Cortisol is also a necessary stress hormone and you will suffer appropriate symptoms when adrenals are dysfunctional. So you may get previously unknown allergies and inflammatory disorders such as arthritis. You may also find you can’t tolerate stressful situations any longer.

      Support your adrenals…there is plenty of information out there.

  18. I was diagnosed with the same almost 2 years ago. I made lots of dietary changes like you have and have completely turned the numbers around. You should look into olive leaf in higher doses to help your immune system respond properly. It can lower high TSH levels very easily. Also maybe get checked for an MTHFR mutation. It interferes with your body’s ability to methylate nutrients properly. That could be why you notice such a difference from the glutathione. N-Acetyl-Cysteine is also a precursor to glutathione production and also much more bioavailable than traditional glutathione pills. Although I do see that you are using a sublingual tablet which is much better absorbed than most! Just know that it can be accomplished! You are on the right track to letting your body heal itself! I appreciate all of your helpful advice and just want to add a little something from my own experience!

  19. thanks for your advices, I’ve Hashimoto thyroid symptoms with hypothyroid – I take only eltroxin tablets – this is the first time to know about diet and life style – I think you mentioned diet for hyperthyroid – So, if you please give us a diet for hypo? Thank you

  20. Katie,

    What “type” of doctor finally gave you correct diagnosis? I know I have Hasimoto but my doctor is telling me to take the wait and see approach and rescan and test every 6 months. Thyroid issues are a big issue in my family and I already have two sisters with Hashimoto. Did you see and Endocrinologist?

    Thanks for any help.

    Kathryn

    • I saw an endocrinologist, but a functional medicine doctor was finally able to diagnose it through a blood test and ultra-sound.

    • What is his reasoning for waiting? This could be harmful in the longterm. You need treatment if you are suffering symptoms then I cannot see his reasoning for waiting?

  21. Hi Katie,

    I just love all that you do. Thank you for sharing and your time you invest.

    I also am a member of the Hashi world and am looking for the right doc to go to. We just found out Sat. morning, my son, (9 yrs old) also has a thyroid disorder (high TSH). We are going for more blood work today (only the T4 though ) His un-natural doc would not do any more tests. UGH~ I was wondering if you would recommend your doc (we are in Ohio)? Maybe we could do a long distance protocol?? I just don’t want him to be on meds for the rest of his life. We are also getting my daughter’s blood tests today too since it’s looking like it could run in families, (she’s 7). I was wondering what tests or things should actually be done. Any suggestions?

    Thanks for any light you can shine/shed!
    Blessings to you 🙂

    • My doc is in Arizona but I’m working on trying to get resources for those who live in other states to be able to access good docs…

      • Hi Kate, I have a doc reference. Austin, TX Homeopathic Endo. Ron Manzanero. http://aimmd.com/

      • I to have a thyroid problem. I have read something about if you ever had a head injury you could be pron to having a thyroid problem. This is all new to me. I lost wight with mine and hair lost. Still trying to find the right doctor in Phoenix As. Hi Kate I live in Arizona please give me the name of your doctor I am trying to find one who takes my insurance.

      • Can you please state who your thyroid doc is? I, too, and trying to find a good one in Phoenix who takes insurance. Thank you!

  22. Hi Katie,
    I have a question, I started taking Cod liver oil, and mine has 2000 Vitamin D already. Do you think that would be enough, or is it more advisable to take also the Vit D serum? Also, about the rebounder, it has a warning label saying the material can emit things that can be hazardous to reproductive health? I think it should be placed outside the house so it wont emit those toxins in the air…Also what’s the difference between cod liver oil and fermented cod liver oil?
    Thanks a lot for being an inspiration! I always find time to read your articles and I am happy with the changes I am observing in my health.

  23. Hello! It was encouraging to read this post! I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s two years ago and was then put on iodine,dessicated thyroid and a plethera of supplements.. what was a mild case turned into a full blown nightmirror as the iodine pushed my Hashi numbers through the roof! I have ntt been tested lately but feel like it is in remission. I no longer take anything, just try to stick to an autoimmune diet and excercise with some of the supplements you said you also take. I was wondering, in my research I found the cruciferous veggies ( kale, broccoli ,spinach , cabbage..ect) also strawberries, inhibit thyroid function.. Have you felt a difference when you consume these foods? I go back and forth because they are all great for our bodies, but don’t want to do further damage and kick the Hashimotos back up again.

      • Per a seminar I attended by Chris Kresser, cruciferous vegetables are goitrogens and do affect Hashimotos. He said to avoid eating them raw. Steaming helps, but boiling is actually the best way to eat them.

        • I’ve heard his stance on that. He is correct with regular hypothyroid but hashimotos is another animal that isn’t affected in the same way. My doc (Alan Christianson) is considered one of the world’s leading experts on Hashimotos…

  24. I find this post very interesting as I have been suspecting thyroid issues in myself for quite some time. But all my tests have shown that the thyroid isn’t a problem and when I asked my doctor about testing for thyroid antibodies I was told that they wouldn’t do it unless my thyroid tests were abnormal. I have widely fluctuating energy levels, from very low to really high, I have times when my throat feels “full” and it’s harder to swallow, then it’s back to normal. This past week and a half I have been very itchy with no rash. These are just a few symptoms that are bothering me. I’ve given up on standard doctors and am visiting a naturopath soon. Am I going crazy or do these symptoms sound similar to what you’ve been going through? I’d love to know.

    • Your not crazy. I’ve been dealing with thyroid- perimenapause symptoms for a while but the odd feeling in my throat that comes and goes really scared me. My triggers are lack of sleep, gluten, dairy, sugar and soy. I’m on a mission to figure this out and reclaim my life. Good luck.

  25. Wow, Already limited diet (WAPF/ paleo, some rice on occasion) tried to take out all grains, eggs, minimal fruit for a couple weeks and it seemed to stress my adrenals. What are we (peops with thyroid issues) going to eat? Be looking forward to some of your inventive recipes. Know of any good resources? I knew deep down that eggs are probably my down fall. How to make coconut flour goods without them?

  26. Thanks for this! Does this also apply for Graves’ disease? I’ve been dealing with that and they last said my labs were normal but I’ve still been having heart symptoms… SVT’s and PVC so they have me on a beta blocker…but I just am not sure of that for a long term solution… Have you heard of good results for this naturally? My docs are really against herbs and want to send me to electrophysiology … Not so excited about that. Will definitely follow your progress with this! Would love any feedback!

    • Grave’s often turns into Hashimotos as the thyroid output starts to fail in time; both disorders are pretty horrid of course. Years ago Grave’s was treated with large amounts of Iodine and for the same reason Hashimoto sufferers don’t tolerate Iodine well, since it causes low thyroid output. You could try larger doses of suitable Iodine. Dr Brownstein has a good book on the subject.

  27. Thank you for your blog! It has been very helpful to me, and I love it! I also have thyroid problems, so this post was great for me. I will pray for healing of your thyroid.

  28. Hi Katie! Thanks so much for sharing all of this additional information on Hashimoto’s! I have it as well and have been seeking a more natural approach to balancing it. I had always been told to add iodine as well, but now reading on your site as well as many other places it seems like it is not the thing for autoimmune thyroid – I know this many be a silly question, but what about iodized salt? I don’t use a lot of salt…just a little when cooking certain things, but had always used an iodized version to help my body get enough for my thyroid. Also, have you had any experience with trouble re-balancing your thyroid after child birth? Since giving birth 20 months ago, my T4 runs high with medication, but my TSH also is a little too high and when they add more medication it pushes my T4 too high and I feel “hyper.” I’m having a very difficult time finding information on this situation. Thanks so much!!

    • I avoid even iodized salt and have felt better with this. I do see dips after pregnancy and now I know why!

    • Stacy, many people have trouble converting from storage hormone T4 into active hormone T3. You may be encountering this. Or, you could be converting T4 into the inactive Reverse T3, the mirror image of T3. Reverse T3 blocks your cell’s thyroid receptors, causing T3 to pool in the blood, but not able to have much effect. It is your body’s way of putting on the brakes when you have inflammation, allergies, anemia, illness, adrenal fatigue, etc. You can read more about this on stopthethyroidmadness.com. There you will find an online tool to calculate your Free T3 to Reverse T3 ratio. You must test FT3 and RT3 in early a.m., w/o taking any thyroid meds prior. There is a Yahoo group dedicated to Reverse T3 issues, but you must have labs showing you have the problem to join that group.

      Could you be anemic? An iron panel (Ferritin, serum iron, TIBC and Saturation) would help you determine this (see above web site for interpretation advice). I once read that iron is important in 90+ thyroid processes/chemical reactions (Durant-Peatfield I think). Adrenal fatigue can also cause RT3 problems, so you may wish to check into that. It seems chronic in our fast-paced, toxin-laced society today.

      I wish you the best.

    • Salt is a natural product, however, industrialisation bought about the potential for producing a cheap product such as Sodium Chloride – known as table salt. With the help of marketing this became popular and over took the use of natural salt, though it has NO nutrients in it. Further sodium Chloride alone is not good for the human body as it causes disruption to the fluid balance and electrolytes.

      In some areas there was a rise in the number of goitres observed in the population and a decision was made to add Iodine to both salt and white bread. In time white bread Iodine has been changed to the cheaper Bromine. The Iodine in salt is not an iodine that our body can easily use but a cheaper industrial version.

      Salt MUST be natural and un processed – rock salt or sea salt with nothing added or taken away, will provide you with minerals too and is a healthy food product to use; it doesn’t cause the problems with fluid and electrolyte imbalance and indeed adds to the pantry of minerals our body needs.

      Avoid unnatural Iodinated and Brominated products as well as fluoride products (filter your water and avoid fluoridated toothpaste, etc.,) as they are goitrogenic and block the thyroid receptors on our cells, so prevent the cells taking up thyroid hormone.

      All life on earth originated from the sea, some then developed an ability to breath oxygen and became land animals and some then developed into human beings, birds, mammals, insects and others remained in the sea, some can survive in both the sea and the land.

      The interesting things is that even the most primitive form of life all those thousands of years ago had thyroid cells; they didn’t have pituitary or hypothalamus cells. The thyroid is the most ancient of the endocrine glands and this demonstrates how important it is to life…. we all know it is very important as we struggle with low thyroid hormone. As a result of our heritage we have blood which is similar in make up to sea water….sea salt a product of sea water is an excellent source of food for all humans and should not be avoided.

      Those with illness when told to avoid salt the reference is to the bland and dangerous so called table salt or industrialized Sodium chloride that has been successfully marketed over the years and is the only salt known to some people; it is the one to avoid.

      As Kaydee says you need T3 rather than T4. T4 is the only hormone which can be converted to rT3 and rT3 is a neutral hormone, that is the body cannot use it. The body can use T4 but it is a very weak hormone and needs mostly to be converted to T3. Reverse T3 or rT3, is seen to be raised in bears during hibernation; like bears in primitive life our human ancestors were low in food during winter months and their rT3 raised during winter month, to enable them to get through those months. Some humans today still suffer markedly from the body going to hibernation, it is referred to as SAD syndrome; this is the thyroid hormone T4 reverting to rT3 in preparation of long nights, no sunlight, starvation and hibernation throughout the winter.

      If you take T3 only treatment for your thyroid dysfunction you will be able to remove the rT3 from your body and will start to feel more normal again. And always support your adrenal glands – and check your iron panel; too high or too low iron is problematic for the thyroid hormone getting into the body’s cells. It is a heavy metal after all.

      Best of luck.

  29. Thanks for the great information! Learning lots from your site and experience. Wondering how much of the Probiotic you take, it looks like it comes in a packet. 15 to a box, is that right? Thanks for any input!!

  30. Hi Katie–

    Thanks for sharing your experiences.

    I’ve had hypothyroid for almost 4 years and am levothyroxine (synthetic T4) for it. I find that T4 alone does not address all of my symptoms. My mood is usually pretty low and my skin is dry, nails are brittle, etc.

    I have tried adding liothyroxine (T3) to my regimen but for some reason it caused some serious digestive problems (constipation) even though it improved my mood.

    What are in your opinion good alternatives to T3? I’ve heard natural T3 is good.

    Thank you!

    • I take a natural blend of t3 and t4 called wp- throid and it has helped a lot

    • Support your adrenal glands, and consider ding a gastric cleanse; plenty of information out there. Also check the likelihood of having a yeast infection as this will always cause problems with your digestion and your thyroid and to be honest pretty much everything else in the long term.

      You may need to use additional digestive supplements such as HCL (with Betaine), and pancreatic supplements including bile salts. It may be that your Liver and gallbladder are congested too. You should look into a Liver cleanse and Colonic irrigation too.

      If you feel well on T4 only then don’t use additional T3 or maybe use Natural Desiccated Thyroid hormone instead or even T3 alone. Sometimes when symptoms persist it can be due to low adrenal output too so supporting the adrenal glands is important.

      Constipation is more harmful than we think, in that old waste products can be reabsorbed into the blood stream. further, if you eat sugars you will be forming alcohol in your gut and that too is absorbed into the blood stream. If you eat meat you will have putrid rotting meat in your gut giving off toxins and absorbed into the blood stream. If you eat meat you will be coating your gut with fat, this stops the villi in the gut working properly and prevents good absorption of nutrients.

      Further, it is likely too that yeast will flourish. In the right environment yeast is harmless and simply lives in harmony with us in our gut. In the wrong environment and when good bacteria in our gut are in low numbers; after antibiotics; the yeast actually changes form to become invasive. It grows roots which burrow through the gut wall and then become systemic around the rest of the body where they should not be. Some Drs strongly believe yeast is responsible for some cancers and commonly yeast overgrowth is found in those with cancer.

      Hippocrates said that all disease originates from the gut – well not in those exact words!! Tehe…..but indeed if your gut isn’t functioning well then over time the body becomes diseased. The gut needs and converts around 20% of thyroid gland output of T4 to T3 to enable its good function.

  31. just to make sure – you take both the thyroid medication and natural thyroid?

    Thank you.

  32. I have hashimoto’s thyroid too. I found out when I was 10, I think (I’m 21 now) and have been on medication for hyperthyroidism ever since. Never heard of treating my disease without the hormones, and too bad I’ve read about it only now that I’m about to go live outside of my country for a year. But I don’t think it is that easy to get a less invasive treatment like yours here in Brazil :/

    • Hypothyroidism*

  33. I have had Hashimoto’s for years and I have been reading an awesome book on it by Isabella Wentz called The Root Cause. I highly recommend it!!! I work for a hormone testing lab so I am able to monitor my T3 and T4 and all the other lovely hormones and my boss highly raves about Wentz. Good luck in your journey to optimal health. I love your blog tremendously!

    • I’ve read all the books out there… and her book by far is the best one yet! And she is a pharmacist. Her books is like all the books wrapped in one 😉 It is easy to understand and thorough… I wish I read this book First!!

  34. Hi Katie! Glad to hear your doing better. So proud of you and anyone who takes the steps to get their health back naturally. You mentioned rebounding. I’m very interested in rebounding but have been overwhelmed with picking a good one. Some say cheap is fine, it isn’t rocket science. Others say yu can do more damage with cheap ones than good. What’s your opinion? I truly value it! Thanks!

  35. From reading these comments, it seems that I have a problem. I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism (finally) last year, and have been on Levothyroxine since, the dosage adjusted twice. Additionally, for Palmer Plantar Pustular Psoriasis, I drink liquid iodine in my morning coffee along with a zinc capsule, which prevents psoriasis breakouts – but now I wonder what the iodine could be doing to my thyroid. What could be the alternative to the iodine therapy? It took me 2 years to discover a combination that works better than anything dermatologists have prescribed.

    • If something works for you then believe in yourself. Were you diagnosed hypothyroid after taking iodine for a while? It may be that you can take the Iodine but in lower dose? Find what works for you.

  36. Hi Katie, I enjoy your blogs so much. You have a lot of interesting info to share. Do you know what i can do to help my Hyperthyroidism naturally? I was diagnosed with Graves Disease in January. I had been feeling horrible for years. I am not happy I have this but so happy I finally know what is wrong. I started to eat better and am now exercising. I also take vitamin D because i was so deficient.. Hoping you have some more good tips to help me.

  37. Katie I am a Thyroid patient too (had cancer, so I no longer have a thyroid). Anyhow, I would love to know what dr you see. I have yet to find one I like or feel isn’t pushing synthyroid and TSH levels only at me!! And I have been to some here and some in Nashville. Can you email me that if it’s too personal to list? Thanks!

    • It is important to educate yourself about TSh and thyroid issues so you can argue with good information to support you.

      TSH as we all know isn’t a thyroid hormone it is a pituitary gland hormone. The pituitary attracts and converts T4 in a way that no other cells, tissue or organ in the body does. This unique tissue in the pituitary ensures that it will have a plentiful supply of thyroid hormone and is the last organ in the body to suffer from low thyroid hormone levels.

      What does that mean for us? It means that the TSH levels will not change despite the rest of the cells, tissues and organs around the body being thyroid hormone deficient….So you need to know this and know it well. Educate yourself about how the pituitary gland gets thyroid hormone and how the rest of the body does too…..then you can present your Dr with evidence.

      The TSH blood test is no good at diagnosing or treating hypothyroidism and should be outlawed. You can test thyroid hormones by collecting 24hours of urine. The lab will then measure the metabolites of thyroid hormone; the waste products of thyroid hormone used by the body. This test gives a much more accurate picture of how your body is using thyroid hormone. If your body isn’t using thyroid hormone for whatever reason you will be hypothyroid and the TSH may not show this.

      Do the urine test (Dr Broda Barnes first used this), and get as much information about it so you can show your Dr that too!

      Best of luck.

      • Hi Sally,
        You seem to know a lot about these topics! My blood results showed a slightly elevated TSH (4.69 on the most recent one), but all other numbers come back in the ‘normal’ ranges, including a check for auto-immune, etc. This was a few years ago. I have a very organic and vegetarian lifestyle/diet and have been eating an excellent pro-biotic superfood and other raw/fermented living food supplements. I’ve added liquid vegan D when not getting sunshine, whole foods organic C formula, occasionally adding in herbal formulas for adrenal support, etc. My main symptoms just in the past few years seem to sometimes be better but I feel I am missing something and looking for a way to naturally lower the TSH, which I think will help with my few symptoms (hair loss and fatigue). Much appreciated!

  38. Do you have any amalgam fillings in your teeth?

  39. Hi Katie,
    I was diagnosed with hashimoto’s back in 2009 and went ‘all out’ to figure out why I got it and
    what to do! Of course had leaky gut as well and was allergic to basically everything except ‘plants and animals’. I was first put on synthroid which was terrible (I gained 15 pounds) I found
    an integrated practitioner and was put on armor thyroid (desiccated pig thyroid) Three years ago, I realized I was gluten intolerant as well (since hypothyroidism and gluten intolerance pretty much go hand in hand) and have been truly gluten free (I don’t eat anything that even mimics gluten – no gluten free bread, etc) This whole time I was also drinking bone broth every morning, taking coconut oil in my coffee, adaptocrin for my adrenals, digestive enzymes, probiotics plus kefir and homemade sauerkraut. Miraculously at the same time I went gluten free, the ‘hashimoto’s part of my hypothyroidism didn’t present (the high antibody number) and I have just regular hypothyroidism. I truly believe that if I hadn’t taken even the armor, I could have healed my thyroid with diet alone (it just takes a while). Now after about 6 years of taking armor I think my thyroid may be ‘dead and gone’. There is always hope and as I continue with a ‘traditional food’ approach I still anticipate my doctor telling me he is going to reduce the amount of armor I need bc it is indeed healing!

    • I so agree with you! I believe I should have tried a better diet, and other approaches instead of meds first. My practitioner actually waited several months… then gave me a small dose … .25 of the generic. I was fine for the first six months until I became pregnant, then all my nightmares started. I’m not referring to my child of course ;)… Then when I was switched a year or so after tthe pregnancy to Synthroid, (as I was having palpitations and my TSH went up to 6 or so)… then its been awful since. Weight gain with the synthroid… hair loss.. major… palpitations, anxiety, tremoring… I could not raise it like they wanted. I was forced to raise it during my pregnancy and in the hospital ER 6 times getting my heart checked… Finally, I could not take the anxiety and chest pains any more… I went to find a doctor that would prescribe Armour… but I guess the T3 did not agree with me because I ended up walking out of work and going straight to the doctors and was given a Zanax!

      I stopped all meds because my new doctor said go back on the Synthroid… and I couldn’t… I felt AWESOME! Until I fell 10 feet! Brain injury.. .and I don’t know now what was from the brain injury, and what was from stopping my meds!!! But since then its been hell trying to get a med I can tolerate, and raise it. I alternate during the week between .25 and .37… cutting pills…

      But honestly… I don’t think I needed them in the first place… There were so many things I could have done!! But I didn’t know better. I listened to my doctor. Now… I need the meds I guess? Your thyroid gets sluggish from the meds taking over I guess.

      • Wow, sorry about the brain injury, make the thyroid issues seem minor!

        Yes, I think your body says…”We don’t need to make thyroid anymore, she keeps giving it to us everyday!” and then it basically puts its feet up and kick’s back thinking it’s job is over. I would love to hear if anyone had success in weaning off after 5-6 years without falling on their face mentally or physically! 😀

  40. Hey Katie!
    Love your blog, and thyroid issues have become so prevalent, i think it’s important to recognize the CAUSE of theses issues. Since thyroid hormones NEED iodine to exist..I’m perplexed…and keep researching this subject as it has affected several family members. Here is a great post, be sure to read part 2 as well. Good luck!
    http://perfecthealthdiet.com/2011/05/iodine-and-hashimotos-thyroiditis-part-i/

  41. Hi Katie,
    This is a great post! I was diagnosed with hyperthyroid 2 years ago and healed it naturally in 9 months through supplementation, lifestyle changes and acupuncture.

    In my research, I kept seeing the zinc/copper imbalance theory come up. After seeing how low my copper was from a blood test and then supplementing in small doses, my thyroid went back to proper function. I just want to encourage everyone with a thyroid issue to explore with a supportive practitioner and remember each body is different. It’s important to find the path that works for you! Thanks for sharing your info.

  42. Wow I’m so glad I found this post via Twitter. I am hypothyroid (due to having a complete thyroidectomy) and all the tips you recommended have proven to be good for straight up hypos. I found that focusing on veggies, lean proteins and starchy complex carbs has really helped. I am not gluten free but almost there not by design but because my system is learning to gravitate towards those foods.

  43. I use Gaia Adrenal Health for my adrenal fatigue due to stress. I really feel much better taking it. Hope it helps you on your wellness journey.

    • Add Magnesium for adrenal stress. If nothing else take magnesium. Hypothyroidism seems to cause an imbalance of calcium and magnesium; calcium too much and magnesium too little. Magnesium is a calming mineral used by every cell in the body but also essential to good bone health, brain function, adrenal gland function and heart function too. Low magnesium can cause atrial fibrillation.
      Vitamins necessary for adrenal support include Vitamin B’s particularly B5 and Vitamin C and E.

  44. I, too have hashim. & have low thyroid function. My question is, what kind of smoothies do you make? Do you put the coconut oil in them? Also how did you find a good Dr like that? I have trouble finding one! Thanks

    • Yes do. Just experiment, make them up yourself until you find good recipes you like.

  45. I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s four years ago and like many of you, I found some improvement in drastically modifying my diet and lifestyle. I have taken supplements for over 25 years and have always tried to eat more consciously, and I have had excellent health overall. To find myself having this was pretty disappointing — until I read about the connection between perimenopause / menopause and thyroid disorders. At only 48, I am post menopausal, and what got me through it, and the thyroid issues, was the dietary changes (no sugar, grains or dairy) and Armour Thyroid, which is dessicated thyroid gland. Low doses of Armour have revolutionized my life.
    I hated taking it at first (being on maintenance medicine was not something I wanted) but it made such a dramatic difference that now I feel grateful to have access to it. After two years of crashing fatigue, I finally felt like ME again!

    • Hi Cathy….

      What relationship between menopause and thyroid disorders? Do you have a source where I could read up on this pls? Thanks.

      • Hi Carol,

        It’s been several years since I was immersed in the research, so unfortunately I cannot recall exact sources. I had done a tremendous amount of internet searching and book reading on perimenopause, and in the course of the reading found multiple references to the possibility that thyroid issues and menopause can be interrelated. Of course, like many things, there are just as many sources that have the opposite opinion, but for me it seemed to make a lot of sense, and the blood work confirmed it. Thus armed, I was able to further refine what I needed to do to have a more gentle experience of perimenopause. I would have loved to have solved my thyroid issues naturally, but frankly, after 2 years of what felt like no sleep I was desperate to just feel normal again! I had been doing everything right, yet still feel unwell. So, with heavy heart and feeling quite hypocritical, I tried the Armour Thyroid. Within 2 weeks I was a new person. Since that time, I have remained on it, at the lowest dose possible, with periodic adjustments. I view it as only one weapon in my arsenal of tools that lead to glowing mental, emotional and physical health. I’m not perfect, but I’m learning more each week how to keep cleaning up my lifestyle and eating. I’m grateful to Katie and the many people here who offer wisdom and advice as well!

        I wish I could offer more sources, but the two below are at least a start:

        http://chriskresser.com/basics-of-immune-balancing-for-hashimotos/
        http://www.theperimenopauseblog.com/35-symptoms-of-perimenopause-hypothyroidism/

      • The reason why almost 10times more women suffer thyroid dysfunction than men is due to puberty and menses, childbirth and menopause. These have significant impact on our body and thyroid gland.

        All of us, men included can suffer from hypothyroidism and particularly in old age and other times for example my uncle was born with low thyroid output, as my nan was an untreated hypothyroid. Surgical procedures and other stressors can also cause thyroid dysfunction.

        During menopause women are also older and life is likely to have thrown many challenges at us too; impacting on our thyroid and adrenal glands. The adrenal glands particularly, will be battered and beaten and their dysfunction and thyroid dysfunction go hand in hand. You almost don’t get one without the other.

        Many, including some Drs it seems, think that our ovaries produce the sex hormones and of course they do; however, what many don’t realise is that our adrenals also produce sex hormones, all of them, the same ones produced by our ovaries. Post menopause you are not left without hormones. If you suffer from symptoms of hormone imbalance it is due to poor adrenal output.

        Post menopause women should still be producing sex hormones (via the adrenal glands<) but since their ovaries are no longer functioning they cannot get pregnant. Those women who sail through menopause likely have healthy adrenal glands (and therefore thyroid too,).

        Taking additional hormones such as HRT and even natural progesterone etc., can be detrimental to adrenal and thyroid glands. Properly support your adrenal glands through life; forever. This can be done with good nutrition and specific vitamins and minerals and some herbal supplements.

        If you notice you specifically have hormone imbalance then also take pregnenolone with your adrenal support supplements, (do not take with DHEA). Pregnenolone is produced by the adrenal glands from cholesterol – (one of the many reasons for not taking statin drugs) – pregnenolone is then converted to various adrenal hormones, including adrenaline and cortisol but also all of the sex hormones.

        Doing this enables your adrenals to support you through the menopause; balancing the sex hormones. Often one of the three oestrogen's is dominant and or testosterone, pregnenolone the precursor of all the sex hormones will then be converted by the adrenal glands into whichever hormone is deficient.

        Giving specific single external sex hormones is likely to cause further imbalance and doesn't support the adrenal glands in the long term; but actually stresses them. The adrenals do so much; if you had them surgically removed you'd be dead by the end of the week! they are essential to life look after them; undoing so you will also support your thyroid function too.

  46. Katie,
    You mentioned it’s temporary, so there’s a solution for this problem? Something you may actually see go away permanently?

    • Yes… for the sake of the blog, I am monitoring blood levels and ultrasound frequently to see how things are affecting them. I’ve seen improvements in both since starting the new health changes

  47. Hi katie, i am 24 yrs old and have not been diagnosed but have been wondering if i have thyroid symptoms. For the past year my hair has thinned drastically and is terribly dry and lifeless. I also have recurrent yeast infections, gum disease ( even though i have always brushed and flossed) mood swings, fatigue, lethargy, worse short term memory, and difficulty concentrating/retaining info while studying. I know you are not a doctor, i am just wondering if yoi know if any of these symptoms can be thyroid related. Thanks!

    • Yes they are. They are also due to fungal/yeast infection. Its important to sort out the yeast infection before doing anything else; you may find thyroid function improves once yeast is sorted.

      Simultaneous to sorting the yeast, support the adrenal glands….and think about and educate yourself about thyroid issues. Also look at your diet – including avoiding sugars a well as treating yeast.

      Once these things are done you will be knowledgeable and better able to argue(if necessary,) and get diagnosis and the right treatment for thyroid dysfunction if it persists.

  48. Hi Katie
    Glutathione- I’ve been hearing more about this. You said you put it under your tongue. Do you wait till it dissolves or something?

    • It is a liposomal form so I just keep it there for 30 seconds or so and swallow

  49. Hi Katie,

    Thanks for this blog. I actually do not have a thyroid (removed in 2001 due to Hashimoto’s and some cancerous nodules found on us). I also have a pituitary gland tumor (as well as my brother). During the pregnancy and since the delivery of my son 16 monts ago, we have not been able to get things leveled out. Do you know of any resources that address nutrition and thyroid function in regard to not having a thyroid? Would the same types of dietary changes you’ve been doing apply to those of us who have had our thyroid removed?

    Best Regards,
    Tracy St. Romain

    • The same changes should be helpful if you are on medication and you’d also definitely want to focus on healthy fats

    • Check out the book Root cause.

  50. I’ve had graves for 8 yrs. Bn in remission 3 other times. But happy to report that this last time I went on AIP and within a couple wks the symptoms subsided. Very excited that I can control symptoms with diet. Bn way to many times that I’ve bn hyper or hypo from medications, just miserable.
    So I can happily report that I am medication free and symptom free. Fingers crossed that one day all of us are healthy with healthy guts:)

    • Hi Tammy!
      What is AIP? I am currently on Tapazole for Graves, tapering my dose down and hoping to be off medication soon. I am looking to learn about a more natural way to treat the overactive thyroid and avoid possibly having the Radioactive Iodine treatment in the future. So great to see someone can relate! Thanks!

  51. I have a sister with hyperthyroidism, but who is also allergic to coconut. Is there anything else that is as good for you as coconut oil, and can also benefit your thyroid?

  52. I have always used tropical traditions gold coconut oil but recently found this dme coconut. Please take a look and let me know what you think. Thank you Tanya. Alpha’s Organic Virgin Coconut Oil is certified fair-trade and is hand-pressed directly from fresh coconuts in the Solomon Islands by island natives on their own family farms. The DME™ process

  53. Thank you for this article and your others! Ever since I got diagnosed with hypothyroidism 3 years ago I’ve read lots of health info trying to see what I can do to get my thyroid working properly, my goal is to come completely off my synthroid. I find your website has a lot of great info that I haven’t seen before or have seen very little of.

    Im wanting/hoping to try to get rid of my hypothyroidism by cleansing. I just started a couple months ago. I was diagnosed when my first son was about 5 months, I then went straight from breastfeeding to being pregnant again and have recently stopped breastfeeding my second so I can now cleanse.

    If the cleansing and eating healthy dont work I have 2 other options. 1 is see this lady that is a NAET practitioner. Haven’t gone through all your articles so not sure if you know of NAET? Its a type of accupressure that has been used for allergies, sensitivities, hormones, emotions ect. I started seeing this lady a few months after my diagnosis and she has helped me a lot!!! It was great because I could do these treatments when pregnant and breastfeeding. She has helped me with energy and my eczema that I got around my diagnosis time. She said she can usually help people come completely off their medication in approx. 7-10 treatments. I just wanted to try cleansing first and I’m trying to be cheap 🙂 She did accupunture for years and says NAET usually works better (depending on what’s being treated). She’s so good at telling what my body mostly needs help with at the time.

    If that doesn’t work grounding/earthing is supposed to help, I believe so that you can completely come off medication. That’s why you’re supposed to have your thyroid monitored if you’re going to start grounding and you have thyroid issues. Although it appears to not be a cure but a natural treatment in that if you stop grounding it comes back. I’ve been wanting to get the other health benefits of grounding but wanted to try curing my thyroid problems instead of treating it. My friend told me her mom got rid of hypothyroidism by taking supplements and doing accupunture.

    Best of luck getting rid of it! Im sure it was quite discouraging getting the diagnosis when you already have such a healthy lifestyle. Please update us on more things you learn or what has helped! I enjoyed reading the other comments here as well.

  54. I too have hashi’s, diagnosed by ultrasound, not blood work, my nodules have shrunk in 15 years. I had many of the same symptoms as you describe having. Have not tried limiting iodine, but have tried many other remedies without any relief. Best results have been with weights, and quick bursts of exercise. Including my mini tramp at this point, with your suggestion. Will report my progress, as I am trying out many of your suggestions. Been a battle for many many years for me. Would like more info on reducing iodine intake. Sounds like you have cut out almost everything. Not sure what’s left besides protein and leafies. Thank you for your blog I’m enjoying your coffee creamer recipe in the mornings.

  55. I was diagnosed with hashimotos over thirty years ago. I am vegan and am wondering why you stopped eating nuts and seeds thank you.

  56. Thank you so much for sharing your insights on Hashimoto’s. I also have Hashi’s and am wondering about the consumption of seafood, as well as seaweed. I realize that those with extreme symptoms cannot tolerate iodine in either of these forms. But is it considered safe for some people with Hashimoto’s to eat a little seaweed and seafood (salmon, for instance) as well as to take Salmon oil supplements (I take New Chapter WholeMega) ? Overall, I feel that my body craves the nutrients I get from eating fish. Thank you!

  57. Hey Katie,
    I am so sorry to hear that you have this new health challenge to deal with. I have an under active, not HT Auto Immune. But I am interested that you have not mentioned pulling coffee from your diet. I know you love your daily Bulletproof(?) beverage. 🙂 Nearly everything I read mentions giving coffee the flick.
    All the best for your health and your family’s.

    Meg – Australia
    ps looking forward to the Thyroid Sessions.

  58. For those of you who drink bone broth, do you make your own? Or buy it at the store? If you buy it at the store, which brand do you buy?

  59. Love your site, thank you. I have Hashimoto’s as well, and am treating everything holistically. No meds. There has been considerable improvement in my lab work and symptoms over the course of the past 18 months using just supplements. I take enzymes, magnesium, bugleweed, Melissa, Lemon Balm, adrenal support, antioxidants, and oils are great in general for the thyroid, calms everything down. I see an anthroposophical doctor in Chicago. (MD’s that try the holistic approach first, if that doesn’t work, then they try western med.) As Sara above mentioned, I would also love to see a couple days of your menus. Much gratitude & appreciation of your work!

  60. Hi Katie, thyroid autoimmune disease connected with broken barrier between your thyroid and the rest of your body. In addition to what you do you need to strengthen this barrier back, through repairing cell membranes. One of the most powerful herbs to do that is Ginkgo biloba. I really recommend you to include it to your supplements list. It’s hard to find pure Ginkgo biloba supplement though as it’s pricey so manufacturers try to blend it with something else. That’s why it’s always better to have your own tree in the backyard 🙂 The most potent G. biloba leaves of healthy trees older than 7 years.
    Hope that can help.

  61. Hi! I just found your blog and I am learning so much! May I ask if you would recommend removing foods that don’t show up as an allergen on a test? I have hoshimotos and I am breasfeeding my 5th child who is one. Thank you!

    • I did. My allergy test showed I was allergic to eggs but I definitely notice a huge difference when I avoid dairy too

  62. From my understanding, caffeine can exhaust the thyroid and kidneys, especially in women.
    Any take on this idea?

  63. I have been monitoring my thyroid using basil temperature under my left armpit each morning. It should read 97.8 to be normal and mine was 96.5 before I started using natural products to raise it (now 97,5). I have read that a lack of Vitamin D can interfere with thyroid improvement, so adding this (or getting lots of sunshine) can really help. I also use a supplement from Young Living called Thyromin, which is taken at night, but with Hashimoto’s it is recommended that it be taken in the morning. It also boosts adrenal glands. Myrtle essential oil is also a help to the Thyroid.
    Of course, you may have already mentioned that chlorine is a killer for the thryoid (so use a water filter for showers) and so is traveling in airports/airplanes due to all the electromagnetic interference. I take extra Thyromin whenever I am going to be traveling to “feed” or support my thyroid. This is a fascinating topic. Thanks for sharing.

    • The thing about low thyroid hormone; whatever the cause; is that all cells and tissues are affected, sometimes some more than others and the associated symptoms prevail.

      Once the body is slowed down by low levels of thyroid hormone the cells cannot perform their normal functions well. The body then decides on which of its functions it will continue and which it cannot afford to continue, so in your case maybe the manufacture of vitamin D is low on the body’s to do list.

      The reason many who suffer hypothyroidism see raised cholesterol is due to the bodes failure to do its job and use up cholesterol and also due to the liver cells being unable to perform their function properly too. Sunshine can only be converted by the body if adequate amounts of cholesterol is available the body can use it! (Another reason for not taking statin drugs)

      For those who suffer rising cholesterol, it is highly likely this is due to liver failure due to low thyroid hormone. Replace the thyroid hormone and liver failure resolves and cholesterol levels fall. Ta dah.

  64. hi katie, i was wondering what your thoughts are on TH1 TH2 dominance? I recently did a test…I drank about 2 cups of Echinaciea Tea for 7 days and on the 8th day huge flare up. I get terrible pain all over my body. so crap! after 7 days i’m doing much better…Anyways…this may indicate that i am TH1 dominant. I honestly think it’s best i don’t best around with my immune system..and just try to keep it balanced.

    • Echinacea in tea made my symptoms flare too! I was just trying to find something to sip to relieve my throat pain and wow! It was the worst!

  65. Thanks a lot for your advices about Gluten free diet – it was first time to hear about it, so I read much more about it and started diet- I felt better – Thanks again deeply.

  66. Oh My! I started reading the posts and didn’t realize there were so many! I would just like to thank you for your awesome blog.

    I was diagnosed 6 months prior to having my third child, who is now 10. But only with a thyroid issue (hypo)…. it was during that pregnancy that I went to an endocronologist and was diagnosed with Hashis. I could write a book on my journey. I’d just like to stress a few things after reading some of these posts.

    Most importantly, everyone is individual. The symptoms go well beyond your regular dry skin, constipation, foggy mind, etc…. What works for one, may not work for another. All the mediciations may effect each person differently. And what one person needs another person may not. It all depends on many things, and what other issues may be going on in that persons body. Certain symptoms are common and more frequent… i.e., low iron, low vitamin D, etc.

    So many things come into play… addrenals, food sensitivities/allergies, etc… I have been sick sick sick… for years. I CANNOT find a doctor willing to help me figure out MY puzzle. I have tried every thyroid medication on the market.. most recently Tyorsint… the liquid T4 only med, supposedly comes with less fillers, etc. Most cause problems with my heart, (racing, palps, and no… it is not just an adjustment which is normal… it does not go away, but gets worse, as I’ve raised and lowered my meds tons of times over the years… at least I TRIED to raise meds… and others may make me feel like I am 100 years old with arthritis… EVERYONE may require different meds as well.

    Becoming desparate there was a time I was on the computer all hours reading threads (patients/mostly women) know more than the doctors !!! I’ve read EVERY good thyroid book out there and followed all the facebook pages/blogs, etc… And YES… someone mentioned ISABELLA’S BOOK.. .and that is by far the best one I have read yet!! And she was simply a pharmacist!!! It is about finding YOUR OWN root cause.

    Gluten free is a must for hashis patients. Cruciferous vegetables should be AVOIDED as well… however they can be eaten minimally and MUST BE COOKED…

    I have been to 9 endocronologists since 2008. I am seeing a 10th next month after taking a long break. I have been to hormone specialists (yes, addrenals are important, and I have never met a doctor that addressed that)…. biochemists, chiropractors (are quite knowledgable)… but the Endos, who should be able to help me, have the LEAST patience for my reactions to the meds. They just want to give you a med… usually Synthroid (I won’t even go there! haha but I can tell you I haven’t been teh same since, and that’s when my major problems started)….

    I wanted to go to every doctor in every book I read, but then even heard stories from people on blogs that flew out to those states only to be disappointed. Some people are easy to treat! God Bless them… but some are not. I am at the point…51, that I may have to come to accept there is nothing I can do… but I can take the best care of myself and do the things that are possible through good diet, exercise, etc… And this blog has been very helpful in that…

    Thank you!!!

  67. I recently came across Irish moss touted as a super food, supreme at healing the gut, good for thyroid function, etc. As these are two topics you spend a lot of time on, I was wondering if you have tried Irish moss and if so what your experience was with it. I read more and there was lots of conflicting views on its being beneficial or not as it is the plant from which carageenan is derived.

  68. Thank you Katie and for all who have shared. Like Angela, I feel I could write a book on this. I recently gave a list of items to help those suffering with Hashimotos to a friend. Here is my advice, hope this helps some. Best of health to you all.

    1. Stop drinking water with flouride. Invest in your drinking water.
    2. No raw green juicing! A good recipe is beets, carrots, celery, apple and ginger
    3. Read about goitrogens and night shade vegetables and limit yourself to those you love…but cook them.
    4. Find a doctor that can help your body as a whole, not in parts. You will find one here: http://www.functionalmedicine.org
    5. Buy and read Dr. Mark Hyman’s books. He has great advice and recipes.
    6. Limit the toxic overload on your body by eating organic, using natural products ( http://www.annmariegianni.com and http://www.pacificaperfume.com/ )
    7. Sweat. Exercise, sauna, eating hot food. Whatever it takes, you need to sweat.
    8. Meditate. 10-15 minutes a day. Quiet your Self and relax.
    9. Laugh. Laughing is a great release pushing good hormones through your body while reducing stress hormones .
    10. Keep a journal to track your progress, moods, etc. 

    Only you have control of your body, and in the words of the great Dr. Seuss via the Lorax, “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot,
    Nothing is going to get better. It’s not.”

    • love that quote krissy! so true 🙂

  69. Hello Katie, I do have a question for you, with stopping all sugars does that mean you also stopped drinking Kombucha? I have not had grains nor sugar in a very long time but in Nov or Dec 2013 I started making my own Water Kefir and Kombucha for the probiotics. I was wondering if it is safe to drink with thyroid issues? I recently bought some probiotics.. (not the kind you are getting)… not sure what is going on there but my stomach is not happy with them… so bloated and I put on 5lb in two days. Have you heard of anyone else reporting issues like this with some probiotics? I searched looking for answers but found none.

    I love your site and all the helpful info. I get on your site and rabbit trail all through and then it is like where did I see that. I also share many many of your posts with friends and family. Thanks for all you do here!!

    • Some people can have a severe reaction to probiotics, especially if there is an issue like SIBO going on. I still drink fermented drinks but make sure they are strongly fermented so most of the sugar is gone. I’ve had good results with BioKult and the brand I listed here.

      • Hello, I wanted to share this with you, I ran into my natural path doc over the weekend and she said what is happening is that the toxins that are bing released in my system from the probiotics are basically attacking my thyroid and that is why I had such rapid weight gain. I have stopped the probiotics for now and I go to see her today for more tests.

        On another note, I bought some Glutathione. I did not expect the immediate good response I got from it. I calmed down. My body must have really needed it. I do so much for my immune system as it is, something must really be out of whack. I had not even heard of Glutathione until your post here, so Thank you very much!! Ever Learning Ever growing.

  70. Katie,
    I just bought a vitamin D serum with sunflower seed oil and I just saw the one you use has
    Olive oil and wanted to know if I should not use the serum with sunflower seed oil? What are your thoughts?

  71. I love this site and especially these comments that are always helpful. I am not taking any prescriptons at this point and have drastically improved my thyroid function with the follwoing steps. I wish you all good health!
    1. Stop drinking water with flouride. Invest in your drinking water.
    2. No raw green juicing! A good recipe is beets, carrots, celery, apple and ginger
    3. Read about goitrogens and night shade vegetables and limit yourself to those you love…but cook them.
    4. Find a doctor that can help your body as a whole, not in parts. You will find one here: http://www.functionalmedicine.org
    5. Buy and read Dr. Mark Hyman’s books. He has great advice and recipes.
    6. Limit the toxic overload on your body by eating organic, using natural products ( http://www.annmariegianni.com and http://www.pacificaperfume.com/ )
    7. Sweat. Exercise, sauna, eating hot food. Whatever it takes, you need to sweat.
    8. Meditate. 10-15 minutes a day. Quiet your Self and relax.
    9. Laugh. Laughing is a great release pushing good hormones through your body while reducing stress hormones .
    10. Keep a journal to track your progress, moods, etc.
    Only you have control of your body, and in the words of the great Dr. Seuss via the Lorax, “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot,
    Nothing is going to get better. It’s not.”

  72. Thanks for this blog. I wanted to know since you’ve made these above changes, have you gone back to your dr to get blood tests drawn to see if there was an improvement since your last labs? I’d like to know for myself. I have a low thyroid condition that is due to autoimmune issues. Thanks…

    Ronnie

  73. Just wondering if you use MCT oil. It is more powerful than coconut oil. Thanks so much!

  74. Thanks so much for this post, I was first diagnosed with HT about 8 years ago and now since having baby #3 I’m having more difficulty controlling it. The reason I’m posting though is because my baby girl (turning 1 next week) had blood work done due to a measles scare (wasn’t measles), but her TSH came back as elevated, though the T4 was still within normal range. As you can guess I am very worried about this. I was wondering if in your search for information have you heard of a baby developing HT (not born without a thyroid as I know that this is different entirely)?

    • Yes. It can happen and is more of a possibility if mom has it as well. I’ve been worried about this in mine too and am definitely planning to watch them carefully. I am working on seeing if there is a way I can put my doc in touch with readers so we can ask these kinds of questions!

  75. Hi Katie,
    Do you take Glutathione, Maca and Astaxanthan all at the same time? I am trying to choose what to take and it seems the Glut/Astax are both strong antioxidants and Glut/maca both balance hormones. Then you mentioned Spirulina too as a good antioxidant in another post. Supplements are so expensive so I am trying to choose wisely.
    Thanks,
    Naomi

    • I’d stick with Glutathione (before food in am) and Asntaxanthin (lunch time) if I hd to choose.

  76. Thank-you thank-you thank-you thank-you!

  77. Hi Katie, great interview on second opinion , the thyroid sessions.
    I have hashi and nodules on thyroid. Last yr is tarted juicing and making my own saurerkraut , but this week I just heard that cabbage, spinach and kale is not good for thyroid function. I’m confused can you help.?

    • t is not good for regular hypothyroidism but is considered ok for Hashimotos 🙂

      • Thank you, im so relieved, even though I was ready to give it up. Im ready to do whatever it takes to feel better and get my life back.

  78. Hi! I am wondering if any of you with Hashimoto’s have had internal shakiness??

    • Rachael, yes I experience a sort of shakiness every so often. It sort of feels like maybe heart palpitations or anxiety but it comes on when I am completely relaxed and chillin’ out. I’ve checked my pulse but it feels normal. Seems to last about 2-3 minutes and then will be gone.

      I’ve talked to my doc about it but he has no clue if it’s not occurring at that exact moment in the office. I’ve had EKG’s, chest xrays, an Echocardiogram and worn a 24 hour holter monitor but everything came back as normal. It does occur less often now though, every month or so whereas previously it was happening every few days.

  79. I have had blood work done three separate times. Each time there are levels out of whack, but my doctor does not want to do anything because it might through more levels out of whack. According to my research on my blood levels I have hypothyroidism. What should I do? I have a lot of the symptoms of hypothyroidism also such as being tired all the time even though I get the recommended hours of sleep, thinning hair, memory problems, I have a hard time losing weight and I gain it faster than I lose. I also had very heavy and long menstrual cycles until I had a partial hysterectomy. Is there anything I can do or request that will help my doctors see that I have a problem? Is there anything I can do to help myself? I feel so lost in all of this!

  80. I have thyroid disease as almost every female in my family (aunts, cousins, etc.). I have Hashimotos and am always trying to read the latest research as well as hear others’ experiences like in the blog post and do everything I can to take care of my thyroid. It takes dedication and we must pay attention to our symptoms and stay on top of it. But many with it are feeling better. Do not lose hope! I wrote about it recently as well (http://www.thehealthminded.com/2014/05/nine-ways-to-improve-your-thyroid-health.html) and always enjoy connecting with others over it. Thanks so much for your great post and the very best of luck to everyone here in feeling better.

  81. I have hashimtos and leaky gut. I take Raw thyroid (not synthroid), feremented cod liver oil, probiotics, and L Glutamine. I recently removed gluten, and grains from my diet. I was vegeatarian for years and started adding a bit of meat back into my diet. Do you think I should not eat any eggs? I used to eat oatmeal for breakfast every meal but now I have been doing avocado, or a shake or eggs. Please let me know what your feeling is on this. Thanks so much!

  82. Hi, are you still using Bio Kult as your Pb of choice or have you switched to this brand? Thanks

  83. I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Hypothyroidism almost 10 years ago. I have been taking 200mcg of synthroid everyday for almost a year and my levels were still dangerous, like 24+ it has been a nightmare chasing around a 3, 5 & 6 year old when you have almost zero energy to take care of yourself.
    For the last few months I have been using clove essential oil topically over my thyroid gland four times a day. I went in to have my levels tested and I was slightly “over medicated”! They reduced my meds for the first time ever! I went in again a month after that to be rechecked, again my meds were reduced!
    I have been so amazed at the difference in my hypothyroidism and would love to hear if anyone else has a topical eo remedy that has worked for them!
    I buy the majority of my eo’s from MRH but do love the blends from doTerra. Thank you for all of your amazing recipes! Definitely my go to site for natural recipes!

    • Wow, thanks for sharing your story, and thanks for reading!

  84. Katie, do you think this Upgraded glutathione product is safe during pregnancy and breastfeeding?

  85. Hello Katie! So…just to be certain that I have this correct….I should NOT be consuming much of my Himalayan Pink Salt with a diagnosis of Hashimoto’s? Thank you!!

    • I still eat Himalayan to taste, but I refrain from using iodized salt on anything.

  86. Hi Katie,

    I am trying to heal my body and thyroid naturally after YEARS of suffering; I love your site and the resources have been SO helpful to me, but I do have a question. When I looked up the Glutathione using the link above, the ingredients include:
    Polysorbate 80 (emulsifier from sugar alcohol and vegetable oil)
    I thought sugar and vegetable oils are not okay in any form??

    • Those are natural forms that are just designed to get it in to the blood stream through liposomal delivery. When I’ve asked, they are non-GMO and organic, but I”ll verify that again.

  87. I wish someone, anyone, had openly stated how bloody awful the Bulletproof glutathione tastes. It did clear and calm my brain, but overall it was too much for my body and I can’t take it. Bulletproof seems very professional and their products will probably work wonders for many people, but I just want to put it out there that it is definitely not for everyone.

    • Heck yes! I think it tastes like wet dog combined with fresh vomit. It starts off tasting pretty awful (but tolerable) develops into horrendous the longer you keep it in your mouth, and you cannot get rid of the flavor after! I took it once and could not go on. I did feel better after taking it, but you are right… it’s not for everyone!

  88. from what I understand is also not advisable to eat rice, beans, lentils, chickpeas, cassava, cashews and walnuts. Is that right?

  89. Thank you so much for all of your experiences with Hashi’s. I am 21 years old and though I dont have a lot of symptoms of Hashi’s the one that is concerning me is infertility (we I have). My doc put me on an iodine plus selenium and zinc supplement. Is this okay? I don’t feel worse on it, I may even feel like I have more energy. Also, have you tried any of the do terra multi’s or any of their oils to heal your thyroid??

    • I was diagnosed with Hashimotos 10 years ago and my levels have continually gotten worse over that time. I have found amazing relief using Clove Essential oil 3-4 times a day topically. My medication has been dropped now, 4 times since I started using it. That is after a continual rise over the last 10 years. It’s been amazing for me and even my doc is pleasantly surprised. It’s been a wonderful experience for me so far. I’m hoping to get off my meds at some point but that may take a while since my case is so very severe. I hope this is helpful. Good luck!

      • Thank you for sharing this information with us, Kristin! Just out of curiosity, where do you apply the oil?

      • Thank you!! I have been putting lemongrass and frankincense on my thyroid and just ordered clove and sage 🙂 what is your website for other recipes?

  90. I am starting to think I have an auto immune disease, maybe thyroid related. Can not get rid of flat warts all over my body, melasma covering my face, horrible pain in feet and ankles, swelling in ankles, occasional numbness or tingling in my arm and hand, fatigue, etc. I have been doing research and this is what it is leading to.

  91. Dear Katie,

    I come to your blog all the time for sound, healthy lifestyle guidance. I’m amazed and grateful for the work and dedication you put forth in sharing your journey and knowledge. God bless you!

    I have a wonderful obstetritian who tries to choose the least invasive and most natural approaches in her care. I am 8 1/2 weeks pregnant, and am supplementing with progesterone, and liothyronine for T3. She tested my T4 as normal and my T3 as low. My husband and I always choose natural routes and I’ve never really taken any medications through my life before now, but I don’t want to risk experimenting with correcting my thyroid naturally while pregnant at this point if it could harm the baby (we have two children in Heaven through miscarriage because of hormonal deficiencies). But once Baby is born, I’ll go off the liothyronine.

    Do you know of any adverse effects from taking this medication, and do you think your thyroid-related dietary/lifestyle changes could help in the case of low T3 only?

    • Check out the site Hypothyroidmom….there is a lot of information about pregnancy and thyroid since the author also suffered numerous miscarriages due to low thyroid hormone.

  92. Hi Katie- I have been reading your blog for years. Thank you for everything you do. I was diagnosed last month with Hashimoto’s. I am 29 y/o female. 5’4 and 98 lbs. I’m pretty convinced that 4 failed attempts at artificial insemination triggered the disease. My hair is falling out, I have bad acne, weight loss (?!), fatigue, zero sex drive, thinning eyebrows, etc. My endo said I am not a candidate for any drugs. I was actually glad to hear that since I am so scared of synthetic hormones now. To the point…I am doing the AIP and am trying to change my lifestyle/cope with stress. But the acne causes severe stress for me. I want to get away from chemical topicals (Proactiv) but am scared if I go natural it will get worse. Any advice you may have? Or anyone else reading this have tips? Hoping that with AIP and professional help I can beat this. I am pretty desperate. Thank you SO much for reading this.

    • Support your adrenals and in doing so also use pregnenolone. Its likely your acne is due to testosterone dominance. Supporting your adrenals and additional pregnenolone will enable the dominance to be levelled and your hormones to get in balance again. This should then help resolve the acne and other adrenal symptoms you’re experiencing.

      Whilst adrenals are supported educate yourself about thyroid issues. Supporting your adrenals will help support your thyroid too. Missing/ thinning eyebrows are a classic sign of hypothyroidism; called the Queen Anne sign – apparently she had missing eyebrows. This is in medical textbooks from years ago.

  93. Hi Katie. Im just watching your interview with Neely. I am starting AIP on Monday. Just weaning off coffee so I dont get migraines. Anyway, I wondered what your opinion is on natural (porcine) thyroid when you have Hashis? Ive read similar issues as with the iodine. Im currently on SRT3 but can not lose weight. Have low cortisol and PCOS too. Just wondering if porcine may be better but a bit scared about the things ive read. Thanks in advance for your opinion xx

  94. I love your website, so informative!! I have been dealing with thyroid issues for YEARS. I have tried and tried to figure it out and do it naturally but yesterday I just got new results back – 7.89 TSH. 0.9 Free T4, 1.0 T3 Total and 6.4 T4. Anyway, if I recall, I was originally diagnosed with autoimmune. I have been gluten free for the past 5 years or so and so my last TPO showed up normal but am wondering if it still might be autoimmune related. Do you have any other tests to suggest? I live in on a small island and the docs here don’t seem to think outside the box, at least not that I’ve found so far.

    • An ultrasound confirmed my diagnosis, but you could always try an autoimmune protocol and see if you feel different.

  95. Please, I am dying to know.. how do you get hashimotos/hypothyroidism diagnosed? My mother was on the pill everyday for 8 years before she had me, my brother is autistic.. I’m pretty sure the bad gut environment affected us. (She also died of cancer quite young) As you guys know, doctors are useless with autoimmune conditions… so where do I turn? For example the last time I went for my reactive hypoglycemia, she told me I don’t have it, but I read you can have it without it showing up in the blood.

    I’m constantly made out to be a hypochondriac by these GP’s, when in reality I have a very weak immune system, and have always thought I will have a still birth or die young like my mother. Is it a holistic coach that diagnoses this? Or do I go to private health care? A physician the gp can refer me to??

  96. I have a few symptoms and low thyroid. I do have sleep issues which may be in the adrenal arena, but I also have pain due to hip and back issues from a some past injury and hypermobile joints. I go to bed too late…sometimes trying to get hips and back more alignment to minimize wake time. I definitely have anxiety about going to bed and being uncomfortable (even though I am 85% better)…so That stress can play a factor. A naturopath mentioned the adrenalin issue…but the test was MORE money…and I thought at this time a waste. My biggest issue (sorry to be blunt) is constipation. I have had it all my life to some level. I had actually stopped eating beef and most grains/gluten after things worsened all of a sudden after menopause. Not much worked except for extreme stuff and then I was back to square NONE. Doctors said my only recourse might be partial colon removal (it is longer than most). I also had hair loss and thin nails. I opted for a food sensitivity test (150 items…callled a MRT test). I found I was sensitive to a number of items I was eating multiple times a day…that I would NEVER have suspected (beef, dairy, tomatoes, spinach, potatoes, olive/olive oil, sulfites ( big one), mustard, basil, pistachios, pecans…to name a few. I noticed a difference in two weeks. It took months though and I found lettuce and other things were also an issue (elimination/reintroduction diet). After the holidays, i find myself back where I started. My system is still not as uncomfortable, but my digestion is now a slow crawl. I am eliminating one thing for days, one at a time, and hoping for some idea of what happened. I am wondering if my thyroid was not having to work as hard and my system was better for it with out all the inflammation, but now it is not meeting demand again and that is why I am here again. I eat so healthy you would not believe it. I even make my own Almond milk, which after I use the soaked nuts I have, I will be eliminating as well. I am losing weight and i fear muscle. I am having a hard time balancing my blood sugar with out enough carb/protein balance. I either drop energy after eating or have a load of energy…but end up hungry every half hour. Nuts are my go to, but I am reading about issues with them. With everything I cannot eat…i am not getting enough already. I use a nutribullet and with that and removing seniti e food my hair is growing back. I still use the generic rogaine though…as I am afraid for it to fall out. I was using it before though and it was not growing/well or staying until my additional diet changes. I think my thyroid swings low and high regularly. It seemed to be regulating…i was even comfy warm and turning DOWN the heat for months. With my, now, reoccurring symptoms I have since found I am revisiting a North Pole chill the past few days, and unless I am imagining it…my hair growth seems thinner. Only time will tell on the latter. I do use probiotics…although the last time (before this one) that I tried them i passed tar for over a month (even after going off them). I did not know, and no one told me, to start slow. I use fermented probiotic coconut water (goodbelly), i eat firefly raw probiotic sauerkraut, and I take an enzyme (dr’s Best) that has one probiotic in it. I recently bought coconut kefir but have not tried it yet. I ramped up slowly with the pill, and then added in the sauerkraut…but not sure if cabbage is hard for me to digest. Cruciferous veggies are…but the probiotics are supposed to help with that! I am so frustrated!!! I just signed up for a seminar on the thyroid by a Dr. Werner Marksfield at NW Health (I am in Wa state). He is into natural proactive therapy and provides insights in his free seminar. A half price consult (if attending the seminar) with blood test for 6 things included in the consult. I am thinking about the consult…

    I know this is a lot of info and probably TMI, but I am looking for help and wonder if anyone has similar issues like mine. Doctors seem baffled by the issues I have…and I am feeling alone in this! Thanks and so sorry for the TMI!! 🙂

    • Wow, do we have alot in common, Tamiz!!! I have so many of these exact issues. Thank you for taking the time to be so specific in your post.

    • Julie – you are welcome! Posting this is weird, at the moment, because your reply has not yet been posted. Lol. I wish I could pass on my email so we could talk more in detail, and maybe provide some support or even new ideas for what IS working to help! If my email address can be passed on to Julie, I would appreciate it site moderator! Julie if you are not comfortable with this you do not need to take any action. Finding someone with similar issues was enough to make me not feel completely alone! Blessings!

  97. Have hypo. Synthroid for ten years. Now I also have high high cholesterol and hypertension. Changing to holistic. Sure how I’m making the right choice. I do have to wait a bit for results but I’m very nervous. Is there a way I could improve my hypertension while I wait? Also she doesn’t prescribe thyroid hormone. Will continue to see endo for med. Should I combine with synthroid or go ahead and ask for armour/naturethroid whileI do what the holistic says? Thanks for any info as I’m very nervous.

  98. Katie,

    I have Hyperthyroidism and my mother went to the Corn Crib (a health-foods store) and was suggested by a woman with the same disease to use Black Walnut powder capsules. My question is, after using the capsules for so long with no effect, are they a good benefit towards my thyroid or just for riddance of parasites only?

    P.S. — I am grateful for discovering this video and your website. It’s like having another wise grandmother who knows her stuff! 😉

    • I haven’t seen any evidence of them directly benefiting the thyroid. Thanks for reading 🙂

  99. I suspect that I have a thyroid condition, and I have recently had my bloodwork done (returning soon to get results). I notice that some have suggested certain food choices to mitigate symptoms. There have been so much praise for coconut oil/water/etc….but for me, whenever I consume coconut oil, those annoying palpitations start. Other foods that present those dreaded palps are; broccoli, brussel sprouts, fermented products (except yogurt/kefir, which I consume) and to a lesser degree: cabbage. I have also noticed that I can’t tolerate dark chocolate and green tea as much as I used to.

    My question is could a person have multiple types of thyroid disorders: hyper + hypo + graves/hashimoto’s, etc…..?

  100. In response to lee, hashimotos causes fluctuations between hyper and hypo symptoms but in the end when the thyroid is destroyed you stay hypo.

    My question to readers is at what tsh level are most people put on drugs? I seem to remain around the same level just outside of normal range 4.3 last time and have been told some people go years and years at this low level stage with mild but identifiable symptoms. Opinion also varies as to what the normal range is.

  101. After researching, I’m thinking about using ashwagandha (Indian ginseng) for thyroid health. Are you familiar with this?

  102. I just found out I have Hashimoto’s disease and your blog posts have been the most comprehensive and easy to read resource. I was wondering if there is any specific further testing that you recommend? I will be having allergy test done in 6 months when we test my blood again. Anything else?

  103. Does your body not need some iodine to survive?

  104. Hi Katie!
    Thank you for this great advice! I was diagnosed with hashimotos last year and was put on levothyroxine. I also found out that I was pregnant at the same time. Pregnancy went well with a dosage adjustment. Delivery was great and then my thyroid went wacky. I am 6 months postpartum now and had hyper thyroid after the baby and about a month ago went hypo thyroid and began getting serious muscle aches all over. Neck, shoulders, upper arms, hips, gluts, and legs. I have recently made adjustments to my diet (gluten free, clean eating, Brazil nuts, etc) and have upped my supplements. I am definitely going to try some of the ones you mentioned. I have seen several endos and even rheumatologists and so far conflicting answers. I was wondering if you or anyone have ever heard of these symptoms from hashimotos??? Any advice?

  105. I am a fellow Hashimoto’s girl – diagnosed 25 years ago. I have made many of the diet changes you have made, and am now on the Autoimmune Protocol diet. I know you are not a doctor, but I am wondering what you know about taking supplements while pregnant or trying to conceive. I am trying to get pregnant now and have heard that infertility is a common problem among women with Hashimoto’s. I want to take any supplements that might help, but don’t want to over do it. Any tips?

  106. Hi there! I am doing some research and came across this blog. Thank you for sharing! I have recently been tested, and then I insisted on testing the thyroid antibodies, which is where there was a elevation. It was not high, but there. The doc did not diagnose me with hashimoto’s, but that is what I have been reading having elevated levels is indicative of. I also have a nodule on my thyroid, but had all of this tested after going off of MANY foods for 6 weeks. Dairy, (already off gluten), caffeine, nightshades, peanuts, corn, etc. I am frustrated as I feel I have to do the digging while the doc. leaves me empty handed. She just said to do what I”ve been doing….. sigh.

  107. I was diagnosed in my mid 20s and after 15 years, still so much to learn. At the time, I didn’t even know I had a thyroid let alone understand its role in my health-amazing how much of life can be affected by this gland when it’s under attack! I was lucky in that I was treated first by Dr. Mercola. He put me on Armour, but it’s never as simple as taking a pill. It wasn’t until a few years later that I was actually tested for Hashimoto’s. Lesson learned: you always have to be your best advocate, even when working with great doctors. I have learned that I feel best on WP Thyroid-a natural desiccated thyroid medication with only two fillers. I’ve been on compounded Low Dose Naltrexone (LDN) for nearly a year now and it has helped bring my TPO antibodies down from 400 (after going gluten free) to 120. I started out at 1600, so I believe this is a step in the right direction. I’m learning so much from the Magnesium Advocacy Group on facebook and know they are hesitant to supplement with vitamin D without proper testing, believing that magnesium deficiency (and other mineral imbalances) is actually at the root of most diseases. They have a wealth of information-a lot to digest!

    Thanks for all you do, Katie! Especially knowing how difficult thinking can be with this disease, I appreciate everything you have shared, making navigating resources and research so much easier.

    • I’ve read that I ought to cut out the “goitregens” – broccoli, cabbage, brussel sprouts – which I hate to do b/c they are good for other things. I did read that if cooked the impact is lower. What do you suggest with regard to this class of foods? Thanks.

  108. Hi. I ave been taking Monolaurin (made from coconut) for the past 2 years since a diagnosis of Epstein Barr; I also take 1000mg of Vit C, B-12, Vit D & Calcium daily. Also on Asthma maintenance drugs. I’ve suspected that I have hypothyroidism because of fatigue, weight control (I average 1200-1400 cal daily), and other common symptoms (I was put on Synthroid temporarily as a teen decades ago) – But I’ve been sent for multiple basic Thyroid tests and have come back at the bottom of the normal range. My average temperature ranges 97.3-97.8.

    I’m certainly at the point where I want to self-treat and will incorporate many of your suggestions – question is with the Monolaurin, do I need to add Coconut Oil and how much?

    One last question, I used to have a sensitivity to Coconut and my sister, who has similar symptoms, is highly allergic to coconut – is there a practical and effective substitute?

    Thanks so much for your help and helpful information.

  109. My TSH is low and all the rest seems to be in normal ranges. It says my brain makes TRH which tells my Pituitary to make TSH. How do I start from scratch and test if the part of my brain that makes the TRH is working or test my Pituitary? Thank you.

    • I am 53 years old and I have the same situation as you, I have low TSH per blood test hence I would love to read any information or experience from anybody with the same condition. Thank u so much.

  110. Love reading your blog! I’m transitioning to GF diet, and limiting caffeine, sugar, etc. Can you do a post on what a weekly meal plan looks like for you? Thanks!

  111. Hi there,
    Thank you so much for your posts! It’s great to read someone else’s opinions on the subject of Hashimotos! I was diagnosed nearly 3 years ago but have suffered from hypothyroid for many years before. I have been told by my endo that there’s nothing I can do to stop the destruction of my thyroid gland and that I just have to “ride it out” the trouble is I have been riding it out for nearly 20 years, swinging, sometimes violently between hypo and hyper and I’m sick of it to be honest! My question is this…Could I not just take a lot of immunostimulants to increase the attack so I can get to the end of this horrible journey? It seems logical that if I cant stop the attack the next best thing would be to speed it up so it’s over, instead of living with the constant ups and downs of it? What’s your opinion on this? I’d love to hear what you think?

  112. Hi Katie,

    I would really appreciate your input on my current situation as I have read as much information as I can, found a functional medicine doctor, and am still having issues.

    I was diagnosed with Hashimotos a couple of months ago. I have been grain free, very low sugar, and consume natural meats/grass fed beef, vegetables, berries, and only get carbs form healthy sources. I also take lots of natural vitamin C, vitamin D, zinc, desiccated liver, krill oil, Bio-kult probiotics alternated with soil-based probiotics, sometimes black mineral powder, and Vital Proteins collagen powder. I start my day with protein then slowly add in more healthy carbs as the day progresses.

    My doctor also said that I have adrenal issues that need to be resolved before I can begin any type of thyroid medication (I took a very low dose, 16.25 mg of Nature-Throid, for a week and it made me sick every day, most likely due to my adrenal issues),so I take 5 mg of cortisol in the morning and 2.5 mg in the afternoon.

    I still have a lot of issues with feeling sick everyday, especially in the afternoon and evenings. Most evenings I feel sick all over, my muscles ache, and I get nauseous about 7:30-8:00 every evening. I am supposed to start LDN soon and I have high hopes for that, but I am miserable every day.

    Any input or suggestions you might have would be greatly appreciated!

  113. Hi Katie
    I had a lump in my neck on the right hand side, the Dr carried out various tests including an aspiration, to no avail, they then performed half a removal of my right side thyroid on examination they found in the lump, cancer luckly it was contained inside the lump. So now I am left with half a thyroid and on lethothyroxine at 225 ml tablets. I feel very lethargic infact I fell asleep this morning on the couch after quite a good nights sleep, my moods are all over the place. I can not seem to shift my weight. I am also suffering from Depression.

    If you can give me any advise, I would be so grateful.
    Jayne

  114. Have been reading, combing, and recommending your site for a while. Absolutely love your topics and back-up research and education.

    That said I was hoping you may have some suggestions to gift me;
    I’m currently dealing with a highly hypothyroid condition (and what I believe to be an additional cortisol level/ratio issue)… at this point its not been determined if I’m dealing with Hashimoto’s… started to experience issues July-August 2015.

    My doctor(s) are not moving as quickly as I am or as quickly as I would like them to…

    Since September I’ve been dealing with moderate-severe symptoms i.e: extreme/rapid and entirely resistant weight gain (35 lbs in 3-4 months)..
    In terms of skin, I’ve been dealing with rough dry patches on arms legs back and sections of my face. insect-bite-esque bumps that itch are not exactly attractive looking, and general redness and extra sensitivity. My skin has grown pale as well.
    The chronic/constant physical/mental fatigue is abominable [which i have already been trying to manage from previous PCOS/PMDD], mentally foggy, abnormally ditzy, etc…
    I do have blood testing lined up, but i always prefer to treat myself, and this series of ailments n their source is new to me…
    Any suggestions for topical applications for the skin issues? I do have a decent cabinet of C.P. T.G. essential oils. As well as fractionated coconut (keep it around to dilute topically with EO’s on skin), extra virgin coconut (use to dilute topically with those oils on body as well, but more importantly to bring to a melt each morning to oil pull with 2 drops lemon EO), and some other resources.

    For the fatigue, my most effective resource so far has been African Bush Mango liquid supplement- helps with both physical energy and mental acuity- but Ive been having problems waking and actually getting up.. Like big problems. Its as if my body is so exhausted it wont move, even after anything from 6-12 hours of sleep.
    The weight thing is terrible but the ultimate solution to that would be just to regulate my thyroid…

    Any and ALL recommendations, suggestions, or knowledge you may have to share would be so appreciated.

  115. I also have hashimotos. It makes me sad, because I love food (and there is so much junk food around me). How do I take off the blinders and see through the mask of “junk food will satisfy your cravings”?

  116. How about fish broth? Not tried yet but have been on beef broth for about 6 weeks and feel great from that. Non oily fish heads are best. The thyroid is in the fish head and gives you the goodness. They need to be simmered for 4 hours. I’ve also just started on Sauerkraut 5 days ago with organic cayenne pepper, carraway seeds, garlic. 6 week fermentation. Great benefits to your bowls I think. I’m on a very strict diet of meat and veg, herbs spices, do eat cheese. No refined oil. Ive not got thyroid problems but I am type 1 diabetic.

  117. Hey, thank you for sharing such a useful information with us.
    My mother(47years,pure vegetarian) is suffering from hypothyroidism. What diet should she prefer to improve her harmone level? Please suggest me. Her TSH level is 0.27 ulU/ml.

  118. very interesting article. i am a nurse but I try to find natural methods to heal when at all possible. last yr my TSH was 3 in May. This yr it was 4 in feb. My vit D was also low. After researching I realize now that the suddden increase in TSH was prob due to the decrease vit D during the winter months. However I have had symptoms of hypothyroid for yrs. Lots of hairloss etc. After reading your article and others on Vit C I am now trying high dose. Yesterday I was up to 100,000 mg without problem. Except a little loose stool this AM. I will try the 100,000 again today. I read that your body takes what it needs and the excess causes lose stoll. You need to titrate your dosage based on this. I also picked up an iron suppliment and started eating brazil nuts for the selenium. I have been eating plant based since jan 2015 . Also I make my own kombucha. I recently read kombucha and other fermented foods helped levels of glutathione as it is a by product of fermentation. So I hope with these changes I will see some results. thank you

  119. Hi

    I am hypothyroid b/c my thyroid was removed. Do i still need to follow an autoimmune diet?
    I know there is a new vitamin on the market called thyvita @ thyvita.com. it suppose to have all the vitamins we need to survive.

    thank you for your information

  120. Hi Katie

    Is good to see there are optimistic hashimoto’s patients. I’ve tried everything…gluten free, etc, etc…but my a-tpo never stop to rise 🙂 . I’ m above 13000 in serum blood tests.
    However, as I said, your positivity is very good to read.
    Great Blog.