Hypothyroidism and Armour

Hi All,

I haven't been on here for a while I have just basically been getting on with things but I have a question to ask and hope someone will be able to shed some light.

I have been taking 1.5 grains of Armour daily for 7 months, before that I was on 150mcg levo and felt reasonably well but was told that i was over medicated and they reduced it to 125mcg, I was concerned about being reduced as I had been on this dosage before and did not feel reasonably well, so I asked my consultant if I could try armour (which I fund myself) and have been on it for 7 months but I am not feeling my best on it, although the brain fog has lifted (yippee) I have other symptoms that I am struggling with and only seem to have had since being on Armour, I am suffering constipation, I get hot and perspire (mostly when am in bed but around 4am and when I get up in morning) through the day I may get 1-2 bouts of over heating, I am more tired through the day and have noticed that I am sleeping heavy, I sometimes wake up with my fingers on one or both hands tingling, I have gained more weight, I used to have palpitations but they seem to have subsided, these other symptoms I have had on any dose of meds are, swollen ankles, especially at night, bloatedness and my hair has thinned so much over the last couple of years.

I don't get to see my consultant for another 4 months but she gave me a form to have a blood test done in case I get into trouble (her words) I think she may have been referring to thyroid storm.

I would like to know what else I can take to support these symptoms ie vitamins, minerals and what blood tests should I be asking for to make sure that I am not suffering with any deficiency's.

Thank you for reading.

Kind Regards


13 Replies

  • Chris, I think you may be undermedicated. 1.5 grains is roughly equivalent to 112.5-150mcg T4. Manufacturers claim the biochemical equivalence at the higher dose but this may be too safe to avoid people over medicating and members often think the equivalence is nearer the lower figure. Ideally your thyroid bloods would have been tested to check levels 6-8 weeks after you started Armour. You can order private TSH, FT4 and FT3 from Blue Horizon and Genova via thyroiduk.org.uk/tuk/testin...

    Brain fog improving and palpitations decreasing may be due to the beneficial effects of T3 in Armour. Overheating can be an unwelcome effect of too much T3. Tingling in hands can be due to carpal tunnel effects common when undertreated or may be due to B12 deficiency. Weight gain, fatigue and constipation can also be due to undertreatment but as you've always been bloated suggests possible gut issues. Drinking plenty of water can reduce constipation but gluten-free diet is often the best way to deal with constipation and bloating.

    YourTSH 0.34 isn't too low so you could increase your Armour by half a grain and see whether the symptoms improve or worsen. If the latter, particularly the overheating, it may be that the proportions of T4:T3 are not quite right for you and you might consider going back to 1 or 1.5 grains and adding 25-50mcg T4. You can source additional Armour &/or Levothyroxine if you need to supplement your prescription. PM me if you need links.

    Ask your GP to test zinc, ferritin, vitamin D, B12 and folate. How much, or whether you need to supplement at all, depends on your results. Low zinc can sometimes cause hair loss, although it is more likely you are undertreated for thyroid, and low ferritin, vitD, B12 and folate can cause musculoskeletal pain, fatigue and low mood. Hypothyroid patients are often low in vits/minerals due to low stomach acid reducing absorption from nutrients. You can raise stomach acid by taking Betaine Pepsin or a couple of tsp of raw apple cider vinegar in fruit juice or honey sweetened water before meals.

    You can start taking 2-3,000mg vitamin C. It aids immune system and general wellbeing and can have a loosening effect on the bowels. Magnesium taken to tolerance ie until you get loose bowels, is good taken at night and can help restful sleep.


  • Hi clutter,

    Thank you for replying to my post. The info you have given is excellent, so glad you replied. I always wanted to try armour as it had such good feed back, I too thought I was under medicated with T4 and over with T 3, your suggestion of combined armour and t4 was what I was actually thinking that may benefit me better. It's such a minefield of trial and error to get a balance that your happy with.

    I will go and see GP and request for blood tests for ferritin, b12, zinc etc cos I think I need to get them done in case there is a deficiency. I will defo try the raw Apple cider, can I buy that in supermarkets, health shops? Or the beating pepsin.

    I think I just need to get myself educated properly on what I should be doing for myself.

    Am I best going to a health shop for vits/minerals or are supermarkets just as effective.

    I will have a look now at them links. Thanks clutter I will let you know how I get on once I get doc to do my bloods :)

    *betaine pepsin*


  • Chris, ask your GP to do TSH, FT4 and FT3 too, while you're having blood drawn. Make sure s/he knows a refusal will offend :)

    Betaine Pepsin can be bought in chemists. Raw apple cider vinegar (I omitted 'vinegar' from my post which I've edited) can be bought in health food stores and online. Look for a brand which has the 'mother' in it like ostlerscidermill.co.uk/

    I use supermarket brand vitC, B complex, zinc and magnesium but most people recommend magnesium citrate (online) which is better absorbed. I buy vitD and B12 from Amazon via the TUK affiliate link thyroiduk.org.uk/tuk/go_sho...

  • Clutter, I will ask doc to do the thyroid test but am sure when my doc has requested them the lab never done the others bcos the tsh was in range. I know if my consultant asks she gets but not seeing her for another 4 months. I will ask doc though to test all thyroid and b12, zinc etc.

    Thanks for the suggestions where to buy the vits/minerals and cider vinegar.

    Am going to get myself organised to get these things done, me needs to look after me cos the health profs only do half the job!

    I will keep you posted :)


  • Chris, if your GP won't/can't get FT3 tested it may be worth doing a private test using the link I posted above.

  • Will do Clutter! Hopefully the lab will do them and save me the expense but if needs must then that's what I got to do.

  • Hi Clutter, just letting you know, that I went to see my doc today and she has is testing me for the tests you mentioned, apart from thyroid tests as she is leaving that for my consultant to do.

    Just got to get my ass to the clinic to have bloods done, do that Thursday on way to work. :)


  • Chris, post the results with lab ref ranges in a new question and we'll interpret them for you.

    If you can afford private thyroid testing I still think it worth doing. Your endo appt is quite a way off.

  • Clutter, i will look into private testing for thyroid and when ALL tests have come back and the lab ref ranges I will put it up as a new question.

    Thanks Clutter :)


  • It sounds like you're undermedicated

  • I was thinking the same Aurealis, good job we got this forum to turn to when we need some advice, so many helpful people on here, it's a fab site. :)


  • Some people with Hashimotos get worse on Armour and all ndt..i did.

  • Sorry to hear that Faith! Are you taking levothyroxine?

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