Mucin and how to get rid of it

I am on T3 for 2 years now (self-medicating - but doctors I go to know about that) and my life drastically improved on it. In fact all of my hypo symptoms are long gone and my life completely changed for the better. But although I lost weight since on it and water retention is less severe, on some parts of my body mucin was still present and I still wasn't able to pinch my skin. Recently I was diagnosed with insulin resistance and put on Metformin. Unlike T3 which I adore, Metformin is not an easy drug, in fact I had lot of problems getting on the dose I was supposed to. However, I noticed that some of my mucin is gone since I am on it (I also take diuretics every 4 or 5 days). Some of my skin is now possible to pinch. What are your experiences? Can mucin and water retention also be connected with insulin resistance and not only to hypothyroidism? Thank you.

36 Replies

  • This is very interesting question and I would like to know the answer to it as well. Why is mucin the last thing that lingers even when we finally feel great?

  • The mucin on my arms, went, this year after having been on Ndt for about 5 years. I was found to have an enlarged heart which last year has shrunk a little. The endo said it was due to operator error. I had another scan begore Christmas and am due to see cardiologist for results in a few weeks.... I am convinced my heart will have shrunk as the mucin has gone from arms and face. If it has, i will be shouting loudly about it.....

    i was dx with diabetes t2 last year, but have just given up with the metformin. Instead i am monitoring blood and eating low carb.... The results dont seem any worse than with metformin.

    Am busy putting 2 and 2 together and i think the high bs leading to insulin resistance is to do with the odd liver results i get, which is linked to hypothyroidism.... My liver always looks like i am a heavy dtinker, but the truth is i rarely drink alcohol as i dont much like it. Not got it completely clear yet.... But thinking.... :-)

    Xx g

  • Thank you. So you haven't noticed any improvement while you were on Metformin? I am wondering about it myself, I just recently started taking it and in the beginning I was feeling really bad but now it looks to me that my mucin is less severe, however I can't be sure is this connected with Metformin or not.

  • Hi there 

    I was put on standard met last year and I refused to take it after a month because of the digestive side effects. Recently they suggested I try it again and have put me on slow release met which is much better although not perfect. If it's the side effects you don't like then why not ask your GP for slow release version? 

  • Hi. I don't have any more of stomach problems with Metformin. I got used to it. I am just more concern now does it work at all. Because I can't notice any difference anymore.

  • If you've been taking it for 6 months and it doesn't appear to be doing anything then I'd suggest going back to GP and asking about it. I'm giving it six months and will then review!

  • Yes, I suppose I'll do that.

  • What is Ndt please?

  • Natural dessicated thyroid..... Pigs thyroid usually. Its in tablet form and is what was used for years before the invention of synthetic levothyroxine.

    You might know it as Armour, but that is just one. Of the brands.

  • Thanks

  • Some things that may help with diabetes..

    benfotiamine ... an extended form of B 1 which helps with sugar metabolism and with diabetic neuropathy. 300 - 600 mgs per day in divided doses.

    chromium picolinate - a mineral that helps with the permeability of cells to glucose... not more that 200 - 400 mcgs (mcgs NOT mgs) If you take a multi-vitamin, ck the ingredients for chromium so you don't take too much.

    berberine - this is an herb that some diabetic sufferers swear by. I have no personal experience with it but reading the results some are having with it, it is impressive.

    cinnamon - always use the spice in a hot drink (tea) or use a commercial cinnamon extract. There is something in cinnamon not good for us if taken in large quantities but is okay if heated.

    "The undesirable compounds that cinnamon contains are eliminated when mixed in hot water. Therefore, drinking cinnamon tea or adding cinnamon to ground coffee before brewing are other great options.

    The suggested dose is ¼ to ½ teaspoon (or the supplement equivalent) twice a day."

    exercise - helps move glucose into the cells.

    A balanced diet... carbs/proteins/fats... good information can be had by reading book such as 'Entering the Zone' by Dr. Barry Sears. If food is properly balanced, you will avoid sugar spikes and make the diabetes much easier to manage.


    My hubby was dx some 6 - 7 yrs ago. I put him on all of the above except the berberine. At the time, metformin did nothing for his A1C or blood glucose numbers. He had to move to a high-dollar diabetic medication (Janumet). After about 9 mos on the rx, diet modification, modest weight loss and supplements, he is now prescription free and his A1C is 6. (down from A1C of 12.5) and blood glucose averages 95 - 105 fasting in am (down from 400).

    As always, do your own research/homework and decide what is best for you.

    ps. Just using natural supplements/alternatives for a month or so after discovering his high 400+ bg reading, we managed to drop the numbers to the mid-200s but opted for prescriptions for fear the still high glucose could effect nerves, kidneys and eyesight.

  • Thank you so much Phoenix23002. I really appreciate this. Is your husband only on supplements now and no drugs? I was thinking of stopping Metformin and instead trying with supplements. Didn't know exactly what I should take, so thanks for explaining. I think I will make a whole new list for my next order from iHerb and do it. Thanks.

  • You are most welcome. The chromium picolinate is very inexpensive. I like Nature's Way brand or Vitacost's store brand. The Vitacost caps are tiny things, easy to take. Also Vitacost's benfotiamine... 150 mg caps, 2 per day, one am/one pm. He also takes CoEnzyme Q10 (Swansons' 100 mg Ubiquinol) and Vitacost's 500 mg caps of B 12 .. 2 per day, 1 am/1 pm.

    That month or six weeks we worked so hard to get his numbers down, I prepared and watched every mouthful of food that he ate and made sure everything was balanced with protein per the Zone book. no sugar spikes. Once we went to the doctor, the doc said he had never had a patient whose blood glucose was under control so quickly.

    Hubby was weaned off the expensive diabetic meds.. 5 per week, then every other day, then 3 times per week then twice per week, and his numbers stayed down so we finally did away with the meds altogether. He took his blood glucose levels in am before breakfast and in the evening before dinner. This was while he was still taking the supplements.

    I would suggest staying on your metformin at first while adding the supplements and follow your blood glucose closely.... maybe 3 times per day at first. I don't know how much metformin you are taking but maybe cut down to one per day every other day IF YOUR NUMBERS STAY LEVEL and so forth. I don't think the supplements will work optimally if you don't eat balanced and healthy. Just my opinion.

    Do research the berberine. It seems to really help with diabetes but some folks get heart palps with it and others, it helps with their blood pressure. Crazy Since hubby has CHF, I don't dare risk him taking berberine but it may work just fine for the majority of folks who have a healthy heart.

  • Thank you. I am completely new to this thing, I don't even have the meter yet! Which one can you recommend and where is the best place to get it? I take 1500 mg of Metformin per day divided in 3 doses. When I gather all supplements I will lower Metformin as you suggested and if all goes well I'll try to stop with it and stay only on them. I don't like Metformin anyway, it's constantly causing me all sorts of problems. I really appreciate you help.

  • It is hard to believe that your doctor put you on this much medication and didn't show you how to take your blood glucose readings or make sure that you had a meter. Suppose your blood glucose drops way, way down? How would you know? This is the one my hubby used when first dx.

    Now he uses FreeStyle Lite but that is calibrated for the US market so don't use that one. My sis uses one that she bought at Wal Mart and likes very much because the test strips are cheaper. The meter doesn't cost much... it is the strips.

    When you order from Amazon UK or pick up a meter and test strips at Wal Mart (y'all have WalMarts?) see about picking up that book... Entering the Zone by Dr. Barry Sears. I honestly believe that avoiding sugar spikes from eating unbalanced is half the battle. :) Any questions, just holler.

  • One other thing.. do NOT decrease or stop your meds until you get that meter and start recording your blood glucose readings. I purchased one of those inexpensive monthly calendar books and recorded hubby's readings each day along with his dosage of meds. In fact we still do that but now just once per day in the am before breakfast.

  • Thank you so much. I'll get the meter today. My doctor (went to the private one) didn't mention anything about it, she just told me I should check my blood sugar every 3 or 4 weeks at the lab. Doctors... they are all the same. Thanks again x

  • And I already have one more question, I hope you don't mind :) Did your husband ever had problems with his vision due to sugar? Thanks.

  • Funny you should mention that. As I said, when we first discovered hubby's sugar was thru the roof (400+), he/we tried to use just supplements to lower his bg. I noticed him squinting (he wears glasses) and not being able to read things on the tv etc. during that month. That was one of the reasons I threw in the towel and we went to the doctor for diabetic meds. I feared the high bg was damaging his nerves and eyes. The numbers just weren't dropping fast enough tho we had gotten down to the mid-200s.

    The b 12, chromium and benfotiamine can help with bg (blood glucose) utilization/metabolism and the b 12 is protective of the nerves. His eyes are fine now but I continue to give him these supplements just as insurance.

    If it is any comfort, metformin is one of the older diabetic meds, thus a long track record. All diabetic meds are horrors but metformin is probably the most benign. But it can still upset one's tummy big time.

  • One other comment, miriamm.... often when one's thyroid dosage/protocol isn't optimal, there can be an inverse relationship between blood sugar, cholesterol and even blood pressure and being hypo. Some find that when their thyroid/iron/B12/D3 is finally optimal (not normal.. rather optimal), their sugar and other numbers resolve.

    So, get serious about this. Maybe pick up a blood pressure cuff and a good thermometer when you purchase your blood glucose meter. When you take your blood glucose, take your blood pressure and body temp and write it down so your can track what is going on. Also write down how you are feeling that day and what meds you are taking and when. It is your health, your body, your life. Take control and read/research/learn all you can.

  • Thank you so much once again. In past few months, in fact when I think of it it started last summer, I don't see very well. I think it is connected with my blood sugar and I'm afraid will it be reversible. You are right, I have to change lots of things in my life, diet for example, because although I am on bp meds and more or less taking care what I eat I still don't do this really seriously as I should. Thing is I was untreated for hypothyroidism for years, this was not my fault, I was very sick but nobody knew what is wrong with me because my results were always more or less "normal". I basically saved myself first with NDT and later with T3 and I was so happy that I am well again. I think I wanted to finally enjoy life instead of thinking about my health all the time when this new thing with blood sugar hit me. I have to discipline myself once again to get out from this new problem although I do understand that all those things are obviously connected.

  • hmmmm.. You say you are on bp meds? Wouldn't be statins like Lipitor would it? One of the side effects of Lipitor (cholesterol meds) is diabetes. The side effects of most all bp meds are horrendous.

    I don't know if there are any 'dots to connect' here but... if you were undiagnosed and hypo for years, that could have been one element to your heart problems.

    Some heart medications can interfere with hormones, stomach acid, muscle wasting etc. I am not even implying that you should get off your heart medications but maybe take another look at the meds and see if blood tests indicate that you still need them or need as much now that you have your thyroid under control? Always work with your doc when adjusting meds, especially heart meds.

    I am still bowled over by your doc putting you on 1500 mgs of metformin. As bad as hubby's sugar was, his doc put him on 500 mg once per day with instructions to increase to 2 - 500 mgs per day if the one per day didn't start to drop his bg numbers within a week or ten days. When the two per day didn't do it, that is when his doc put him on the Janumet and boy, that med did the trick.

  • Sorry I meant bs meds not bp. But this only shows how bad I can see, yesterday when I was writing you everything was a blur, today is somehow better but not much. I was taking blood pressure meds but it was years ago when I still didn't know that I have thyroid problems and it was just for a few months since it turned that I am allergic to angiotensin 2 receptor blockers. Since on T3 my bp is fine although I stopped checking it regularly which is, I know, a mistake.

    So you think that this dose of Metformin I was put on is too high? What is Janument and since the supplement does you husband stopped completely with it? Thank you so much for helping me, since talking to you I really decided to do some changes in my life.

  • miriamm, I don't know your blood glucose numbers (sugar and A1C). I am not a medical professional. I do know that Ken's (hubby) numbers were sky high but his doc only started him off on the 500 mg of metformin with instructions to raise to two 500 mg daily if he didn't improve on the one per day. When that didn't work, his doc put him on the Janumet... a diabetic medication. That being said, I am sure different doctors approach dosing in their own way but..... you may find that the 1500 mg of Metformin is just right for you. But it may be too much. How will you know except by checking your blood glucose readings?

    It wouldn't be appropriate for me to dispute the amt of meds your doc prescribed but I do fault him/her for not educating you about how important it is for you to track your blood glucose readings along with taking these meds, especially when first starting this protocol. Not I nor your doc nor you have the faintest idea how you will react to these meds. Tracking your readings is the only way to know for sure and to be able to adjust accordingly.

    The Janumet is very expensive. It was costing us about $ 250.00 per month and that was with insurance. But Ken's numbers started dropping within days. He was still taking the supplements and eating 'Zone'.

    To sum it all up, the supplements and diet changes worked pretty well but not fast enough to avoid blood sugar damage in my opinion. The Janumet dropped his numbers pretty fast but the Janumet has a lot more side effects than the metformin and it is very pricey.

    After about 8 - 9 mons, Ken accidentally skipped one or two days of dosing the Janumet but his blood glucose numbers stayed down. hmmmm... that was interesting. That is when we started to experiment and tried dropping two days of Janumet, then taking the Janumet every other day, then twice per week. When his numbers stayed down on the twice per week, we dropped the Janumet altogether and his numbers have stayed down all these years. The doctor does labs and checks his A1C every six months and these too have remained within normal range.

    Miriamm, I am not trying to scare you. You seem to be a smart lady, ready to take charge of your health. So educate yourself and be your own best advocate. I think most doctors are well-meaning but some.... well... we won't go One more thing. Ken's doctor had him coming in every six weeks or so for lab work when he first started treating Ken's diabetes. Then every three months and now every six months. You can track your daily blood sugar readings but you can't track your A1C numbers. Only lab work reveals that number. Also ck out a low glycemic diet. Keeping blood sugar on an even keel and avoiding blood sugar spikes is a good thing.

  • Thanks. My blood sugar was not that high but insulin on glucose tolerance test went sky-high. So I was diagnosed with insulin resistance. I suppose this thing always finishes in diabetes if left untreated. I ordered meter so I guess soon I'll be able to see what is going on with me on this dose of Metformin and when I add supplements will I be able to lower it or one day even stop with it.

  • Sounds like a great plan, my friend. If you have insulin resistance (what some call being pre-diabetic) there is real hope that you can turn this thing around and maybe be able to control it with diet and supplements. Keep me posted, okay? Take care... :)

  • I will. Thank you so much for all your help :)

  • My feeling is that you are not on enough t3. Also, if you have hashimotos, thyroid meds are not enough to help many feel well or do well, because the body is in a chronically inflamed state.

    inflammation causes the body to not be able to use its own insulin..type 2. Hypothyroidism causes a false high reading on the A1c test also.

  • At the moment I am on 100 mcg of T3. For a while I was taking more but with no change. No, I don't have hashimotos but I do have chronic infection with cytomegalovirus. Can this be considered as inflammation?

  • i think any illness can cause inflammation, but it may be that you need more t3, even more than you were on before, and cut back if you get hyper symptoms. Myxedema as far as i can tell, is only caused by hypothyroid/low metabolic rate. I have read of people on Dr Lowes protocol dosing as high as 300 mcgs t3.

    Why are you hypothyroid?

  • I don't know why I am hypothyroid, I just am. I obviously have a lot of health issues. When I took more of T3 than 100 mcg I was feeling slightly nervous but I still stayed for a while on the higher dose to see will something happen about mucin and water retention but it didn't. I feel good on 100 mcg.

  • i wish i knew what else to advise, oh..sugar is very inflammatory, maybe you have some food sensitivities too? Very common.

  • I have lost some of my mucin on thyroid s (sourced myself) I have only been on it for 6 months but I don't look as puffy and might tight skin has gone it actually moves now, I have been on water tablets and I didn't find much difference, I was on t3 for 5 months and felt better but mucin never went as I did adrenal saliva test and I have high cortisol, but I'm sure my blood sugar goes low from time to time. I have had full range of bloods on a few occasions and blood sugar never comes up as anything wrong unless they haven't tested for it, any idea what it would say on my results form?? What is metformin ?

  • Metformin is medication used to enhance use of insulin. When you have insulin resistance (or pre diabetes), your sugar doesn't have to be too high, mine in just on the high end of what is supposed to be "normal" range. But my insulin is high which means that my body is not using it to lower glucose. Untreated insulin resistance always leads to diabetes 2. I am on only T3 for a few years and I am slim now as I was before I got sick and I really feel good but I still have mucin and terrible water retention which I can control somehow with water pills but it is exhausting because I feel so weak every time after I take diuretics and lately I sometimes even have to do that every other day. For a while my water retention stopped on Metformin and somehow mucin looked less severe so I thought this is it, I am finally going to get rid of this things forever, but then it all started again. When I tried to lower my cortisol with phosphatidylserine a year ago my water retention became even more severe so I had to stop with it.

  • How do I know if I'm insulin resistant, I do have a blood test kit, what should my levels be and do I need to fast, I'm waiting for my appointment to come through for the endocrinologist I've been asking about 8 times to be referred over the last 2 years and I have had to fix my health myself up to now. I sourced my own thyroid s as Levo was making me swell with mucin and t3 didn't work as I have high cortisol, I only found that out because I sent away and paid for the saliva test. So don't have a lot of faith in these doctors at the minute 

  • I did a fasting glucose and insulin test, than they gave me a drink full of sugar and took blood on glucose and insulin again after and hour and then one more time again after an hour. My glucose was on the high end of reference range but my insulin was high all the time. That's how I was diagnosed on insulin resistance.

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