Struggling with hypothyroidism!


I've recently been diagnosed, well, sort of - they want to retest in 3 months and I can't cope with the way I feel for another 3 months! I'm going to see my GP on Friday.

I'm finding life really difficult. Weight gain isn't my main issue - it's the depression, aches and pains and the brain fog which are getting me down. And I'm so so tired! I feel like a puppet that's had it's strings cut! I'm sure you'll all know that one.

On top of that I have a stressful job and a new manager who has taken a dislike to me. (Probably because I'm not at my best!) That's really not helping.

I'm also vegetarian and I've read that soy is a big no-no for hypothyroidism. That's leaves me with Quorn (I'm in the UK) and I'm really puzzled by reading that I have to now limit my intake of green veggies - I love them! I'm also sensitive to dairy (Lord this is reading really grim, folks!) and now see I'm best off going gluten free.

Has anybody any suggestions to help please?

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23 Replies

  • Most green veg (if cooked) are not goitrogenic enough to upset you. I'm vegan and I still eat cabbage, cauliflower and broccoli, and lentils and many beans etc. Don't touch soy though - always made me feel ill and much of it is GM (although perhaps not in the EU). Don't eat Quorn either - never liked it.

  • Thanks so much for getting back to me - you've given me hope! Can I ask what the problem is with Quorn? (Is there something in it I shouldn't have?) Glad to meet someone who is vegan on here. I'm almost other than a few eggs from my own pet (rescue) hens. I'm delighted beans and lentils etc are ok. There's so much info on the net - I've got confused so it's good to 'talk' to someone in the Uk like me. Thank you!

  • I don't think there's a problem with it, I've just never liked it and I don't eat stuff I don't like. There was once a rumour that it wasn't very good for you as it was made from cereal waste products (from fungus grown on) with added synthetic vitamins - vegetarian junk food, in other words. I don't eat any fake meat. I'm not sensitive to dairy, so I have eaten cheese - not very vegan ;-)

  • Thanks Angel - much appreciated!

  • Agree... soy is a no-no , and Quorn has egg in it so it's not vegan :)

  • I haven't eaten Quorn since before I was vegan, but I'm slightly allergic to eggs so perhaps that's why I never liked it.

  • Hi I was diagnosed end of April and had all your symptoms. Crying, feeling beyond fatigued etc and thought I would never think straight again but after approx 3 weeks on levo my partner commented I hadn't cried that night and I realised I was slowly feeling better. Still tired but by about 8 pm rather than 8 am. My fog is lifting slowly and I am more like myself. Like you what to eat is still a mystery but hang in and hopefully the worst symptons will recede. Stress isn't your friend so can you think of some things to help that, I am now having a massage every week to soothe me. Good luck

  • Thanks Mellis - you have given me a light at the end of the tunnel! I like the way you worded it; 'feeling tired beyond belief' you really have to experience it to understand! The massage sounds like a good idea. I'll have to work on de-stressing. I was off work ill the other weekend and I'm now thinking going by the symptoms I had, I had a bad dip in thyroxine as I'd had the worst day ever at work the day before. I couldn't get my head up off the pillow, crippled with joint and muscle pains, my brain just would not work and my digestion crashed!

    Thanks for your help!

  • Tell them you can't wait 3 months, you want to try levothyroxine now, you will lose your job. It would be useful to get a copy of your blood test results and post them here.

    I wouldn't worry about what you eat except possibly for soy. I think diet is greatly overstated. There are 1.351 billion (as of 2002) people in China, most of them eat soy products, just because links are found in research it doesn't mean it is having a detrimental effect on most people in the real world. In the short term it's probably better that you have sufficient nutrition. You can experiment with diet later. Looking on the bright side if your thyoid gland is on the way out you will need thyroid hormone and it won't matter whether any food product has an effect on your thyroid as it will be kaput anyway!

  • Thanks jimh11. I get your point - and I'll avoid Soy just to be on the safe side!

  • firstly what are your results of any tests done inc reference ranges

    2nd its highly likely your ferritin and folate are dangerously low so start supplementing with iron tablets plus a 500mg vitamin c tablet now at lunchtime and a really good multivitamin before going to bed

    being veggie will have seriously compromised your iron status even without hypothyroid

    yes you need to avioid soy and also totally avoid any form of aluminium or non stick coated cookware

    check with your water supplier as to what they treat your water supply with .... aluminium and flouride most likely

    do not for the moment worry about gluten as well

    quorn is soy surely

  • Hi reallyfedup

    Soya comes from the soya bean pods, part of the the pea family.

    Quorn is made from the soil mould Fusarium venenatum. It's grown in continually oxygenated water in sterile fermentation tanks, with glucose added as a food for the fungus, plus vitamins and minerals to improve it's food value. Mycoprotein is then extracted and heat-treated, dried and mixed with egg albumen, as a binder. ;-)

  • Soy/soya are very high in aluminium content

    Aluminium depletes the body of many vital nutrients and also has a go at the thyroid

  • About the very high aluminium content, do you know why that is reallyfedup? Is it anything to do with the soil in which it is grown I.e can the level vary? And as it's part of the pea family, is it the same for peas too?

  • I honestly do not know

    All I know is what the homeopath who recognised and treated me when i was poisoned by the simple use of aluminium pans

    These days they sneak aluminium into more and more foods and i know that anything inc many breads that contain soya cause me trouble because i am allergic to aluminium in any form

  • I'm sorry about your allergy.

    I've done a quick search and it seems that it's soy products rather than the soy beans themselves which have the aluminium:

    "Soy products contain high levels of aluminum, leached from the aluminum tanks in which they are acid washed and processed at high temperatures". So I'm fortunate then, that I naturally am not attracted to soy products - I'll be thankful for small mercies lol!

  • Amen to that Hypnoteq! I had no idea about that - that's scary!

  • And thanks to reallyfedup prompting me to look it up :-)

  • Really don't think it's a good idea to randomly supplement without seeing test results first. As a vegetarian folate could actually be high. As someone who doesn't eat many animal products B12 could be very low. Iron you definitely shouldn't supplement without knowing your levels. So agree get copies of results done so far, and make sure they include the usual suspects FBC, B12, folate, ferritin, vit D, calcium etc. But don't start supplementing until you know where you stand.

    H x

  • Thanks Hampster1!

  • I haven't eaten meat for about 44 yrs. I tend not to bother with soy products as I find it doesn't generally improve the taste or texture of say, a vegetable lasagne or whatever. I do eat Quorn products now and again though just for added interest, and don't experience any obvious adverse effects. (I didn't have any adverse effects when I ate soy either, just didn't find it advantageous to use).

    If you ensure you eat the goitrogenic vegetables in the cooked state, you are likely to find things are more than fine with them, I would say. The dark green veg in particular are nutrient-dense and are a must in any diet, but particularly if you have a limited vegetarian or vegan diet (or pescetarian diet in my case) and your health is also compromised with hypothyroidism.

    3 months is too long to wait if you aren't feeling well.

  • Thanks Hypnoteq - spent all afternoon asleep - good job its my day off work!

    I'm definitely going to tell my GP I can't cope feeling like this - never felt so awful.

  • Insist on tests for





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