Thyroid UK
82,697 members97,733 posts

Thai NDT vs Thyro Gold

There is so much experience (expertise, really) here that I feel this is the right place to ask:

Would there be any reason to switch from Thai NDT to Thyro Gold?

The reason I'm asking is that the inactive ingredients (fillers and binders) in Thai NDT brands are not listed (apparently, there is no legal requirement for manufacturers to do so), and that also means that they can change any time without patients finding out...except the hard way.

Thyro Gold, on the other hand, seems very pure, with very few fillers, no known allergens, and basically just thyroid powder and Forskolii (sp?) coleus, said to enhance the efficacy of the product.

I am not willing to pay the ridiculous prices that Belgian pharmacies charge for NDT, be it Armour or Erfa (plus, they don't seem to work that well any more). I have tried Thiroyd, but it seems pretty weak to me (maybe I just need to take more of it). Some say Thyroid-S is better...I just don't like the very long list of inactive ingredients of Thyroid-S, including, but not limited to, aluminium (a heavy metal), and I also don't like the fact that it could be reformulated any time...

It seems Thyro Gold is pretty potent, although sold as an OTC, and that John C. Lowe really wanted to create a really good product.

I don't know if anyone here has made the switch, but what I basically wanted to know is: would there be any advantage to switching from Thai NDT to Thyro Gold (with regard to purity, consistency, supply....)?

16 Replies

I don't think anyone can dispute that Dr. Lowe's product is pure but it is what is called a 'whole glandular', not a concentrated extract, which is what all prescription  NDT products are including the Thai thyroid products.  There is another whole glandular with a good track record... Nutri-Meds which doesn't contain the other additives.

The only negative is that there is no exact correlation to the extract vs whole glandular when it comes to dosing.  I think that if you go to Dr. Lowe's webpage and check the Q&A page, he gives suggestions for dosing his product.  I think his suggestions would be applicable to using the Nutri-Meds product as well.  Some hypo sufferers do just fine on whole glandulars. 


Thanks, interesting! I also read somewhere that Thyro Gold turns out to be pretty expensive in the end...? It's true that Thai NDT is very cost effective compared to most US prescription brands which may not even work as well after Belgium, the price of Armour Thyroid has tripled and, at the same time, its efficacy has decreased about as much...! :-(

There is one thing I have been wondering about Nutri-Meds products. Lately, I have been trying to order its adrenal cortex which has been getting glowing reviews. I only found one intra-community supplier, in the UK. They told me that the Nutri-Meds brand is no longer available, but has been replaced with another brand, that true...? I'd love to order some Nutri-Meds adrenal cortex (and possibly also thyroid), but does that mean I have to order it from the I guess it has not been discontinued at all after all...?



It is ridiculous that things like the official specifications of Thyroid USP (the powder that goes into north American desiccated thyroid products) are not available to us. There is a Chinese site that has posted images of some of the monograph - possibly a few years old - of which the below is the start:

» Thyroid is the cleaned, dried; and powdered thyroid gland previously deprived of connective tissue and fat It is obtained from domesticated animals that are used for food by humans.

On hydrolysis it yields not less than 90.0 percent and not more than 110.0 percent each of the labeled amounts of levothyroxine and liothyronine, calculated on the dried basis. It is free from iodine in inorganic or any form of combination other than that peculiar to the thyroid gland. It may contain a suitable diluent such as Lactose, Sodium Chloride, Starch, Sucrose, or Dextrose

From that, I see nothing to suggest any extraction process. Just clean, dry and powder.

The rest of what is visible goes on about processes for determining its potency - not how to prepare the powder.

So I don't really understand what you mean by a 'whole glandular', not a concentrated extract. Surely even the least processed product will have had connective tissue and fat removed? (Don't want the product to go rancid.) And water.


I have no idea what you are talking about.  The NDT manufacturers (prescription required) call their products extracts and the amounts of T 4 and T 3 are monitored and standardized.  The whole glandular isn't supposed to contain any T 3 and so... is able to label itself as a food supplement, available OTC (over the counter) rather than by prescription.  I am only using the descriptive terms commonly used by the manufacturers themselves use to describe their products.  I am not a chemist or a bio-chemist. 



Part 1. Use of Armour Thyroid

A. Armour Thyroid contains both thyroxine (T4) and tri-iodothyronine (T3) extracted from the

thyroid gland of pigs. One grain, about 60 mg, of desiccated pig thyroid extract contains about

38mcg of T4 and 9mcg of T3, a ratio of around 4 to 1.


A: Our products are categorized by the FDA as whole-food dietary supplements, not drugs, either prescription or over the counter. We value our designation, and are therefore unable to make claims, medical or otherwise, for our products, and cannot address medical questions, nor make comparisons with medical products.

Our porcine and bovine thyroid capsules and tablets contain 130 mg of raw desiccated thyroid glandular, made from either pork or beef. It is important not to directly compare this amount with the milligrams of other thyroid products, which may differ in quality, or to prescription drugs, which can be either desiccated extracts or synthetics. To compare taking a whole food to an extract is like eating an orange compared to taking a Vitamin C tablet. We believe that everything that is good for you cannot necessarily be quantified in an extract.


How do they manage to combine these two things:

1) Not containing any T3.

2) Consisting of raw desiccated thyroid glandular.

How do they get rid of the T3?

I certainly don't understand.

Funnily enough, a short time ago we had a poster claiming that the Over-The-Counter supplements contain no thyroxine - that their value lies in them being a source of triiodothyronine only (T3).

The OTC status appears to be based not on any actuality just whether claims are made that the products do contain some thyroid hormone.

There is also the issue that if the manufacturers make no claims for thyroid hormone content of the OTC products, do they even check? Is there any reason at all to expect consistency from capsule to capsule, from bottle to bottle, from batch to batch and over the years.


helvella... what do you want from me. :)  I am only sharing the public information about the two products... whole glandulars and USP Thyroid extracts. 

In the US, products are checked to make sure they provide  whatever it is that they claim their products have in them.  Otherwise, the FDA can shut 'em down.  And heaven help a company if there are public complaints about their products.  The wrath of the FDA will fall on them, full force.

Most reputable companies have their own labs and perform their own tests to insure the integrity of their products.  And it isn't just for purposes of public relations; it is a matter of survival and public confidence.  If a company gets a bad reputation. they won't be around for long.  People are free to 'vote' with their pocketbooks.  Capitalism and free market at it's finest.

In some ways, I almost trust supplements more than prescription drugs.  Just google FDA Recalls and see how many prescription drugs/batches have been recalled by the FDA, sometimes dozens per month. 

Not that the supplement industry doesn't have their 'bad actors'.  They do but it is usually because there isn't enough primary ingredient being in their products... not unsafe ones.  Regardless, folks won't appreciate feeling like they have been ripped off.  Sticking with reputable brands and not necessarily going by price and avoiding buying cheaper,  'off-brands', usually means that you will get a decent product. 


I am just trying to understand the first sentence of your first response on this thread.

Having read through a number of FDA recalls over the years, I am aware of some recalls of prescribable medicines.

I am fairly confidant that Dr Lowe made considerable efforts to ensure that the product he brought to market does have consistent thyroid hormone content - though was unable to say how much in public.


In my first sentence I merely mentioned that there is a distinction between prescription thyroid meds and glandular, over the counter, thyroid meds and folks who are contemplating using the over the counter products should be aware that they are much weaker than the prescription meds.

Here is a more in-depth look at the various thyroid medications, prescription as well as over the counter meds.


You have stated that glandulars aren't supposed to contain T3 ...which is perhaps not what you wanted to say? Disclosing precise amounts is the key. The original poster might find this helpful re.amounts of T3, T4 etc:

Working out as expensive or not will depend on how much you need to use. Trial and error I suppose...


Hi CatrichThe Paul Jones Blog is fantastic. Thanks for posting the link. I took some Thyro Gold last year and stopped because I was getting 'hyper' type symptoms. Looks like I was taking far too much. May go back to it and start on a lower dose. 

1 like

This paper is somewhat old:

Ann Pharmacother. 1992 Apr;26(4):492-4.

Evaluation of two over-the-counter natural thyroid hormone preparations in human volunteers.

Csako G1, Corso DM, Kestner J, Bokser AD, Kennedy PE, Pucino F.

Author information

    1Clinical Pathology Department, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892.



To determine the pharmacologic activity of over-the-counter (OTC) thyroid preparations.


In vitro analysis and a prospective, crossover study in vivo.


Tertiary care center.


Two healthy adult volunteers.


Three OTC preparations (Thyrotrophin PMG [bovine thyroid PMG extract], Thyro Forte [thyroid lymphogland concentrate with synergistic complex], and Thyro Complex [thyroid lyophilized gland concentrate with synergistic complex]) were analyzed in vitro. Volunteers were administered two times the manufacturer's maximum recommended daily dose of either Thyrotrophin PMG or Thyro Forte for one week, washed out for four to five weeks, and crossed over to receive the opposite tablet preparation for an additional week.


The triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4) contents of OTC preparations were measured by HPLC. Vital signs, serum total and free T4, total T3, thyroid stimulating hormone, thyroxine binding globulin, thyroglobulin, and general chemistry tests (including glucose and cholesterol) were monitored before, during, and between administration of the products.


HPLC analysis of the three OTC preparations showed no T4 but did show possible T3 in two of these products. We found no definite clinical or laboratory evidence of thyroid hormone excess with either product.


Healthcare professionals should advise against the use of these scientifically unsound and relatively expensive OTC thyroid preparations, of which the therapeutic efficacy is unknown.

PMID:    1576386    [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

This obviously only applied to the products mentioned at that time. Other OTC products have definitively been shown to contain significant amounts of thyroid hormone.

1 like

Yes, your final paragraph is crucial Helvella: it is very important that people don't get confused over what OTC products are useful  - almost certainly because they contain thyroid hormones- and are supported with some strong anecdotal evidence ( though of course 'science' doesn't recognise non-experimental evidence).

Thyrotrophin in the study makes no secret of the fact that it has T4 removed so that's hardly a discovery. And ''possibly contains T3'' is a pretty poor scientific conclusion. The paper seems to be about telling people not to use anything that isn't prescribed...'cos they may not work and they can be quite pricey.  And just two subjects.  Fairly weak science me thinks.


I believe there is a list of contents of the three Thai products on the TPA site,according to Helvella taken from STTM site. 

1 like

I take two 300 mg capsules of Thyrogold daily, because it doesn`t have any dubious fillers in it.  I was on 200mcg starch free thyroxine.   I am very sensitive to the things they put in  NDT. I feel more alive since I have been taking Thyrogold


Interesting! According to anecdotic evidence, one 300 mg capsule equals +/- 3 grains of prescription NDT.


It's impossible to know how much t3 t4 is in thyrogold as all we have is the Paul Jones blog, claiming to have conversed with Tami and concluding that in a 300mg tgold cap, there is 100mcg t4 and 25 mcg t3. That's a ratio of 4/1.

The thyroid gland is said to naturally produce 80% t4 and 20% t3. Again that's a 4/1 ratio.

Personally I can tell you that before any treatment, my t4/t3 were in the ratio of 4/1 according to bloods. After taking thyrogold, both t4 and t3 increased and stayed thereabouts in the 4/1 ratio.

Whilst that does suggest a 4/1 ratio of thyrogold, it doesn't prove it, nor does it give any indication of the mcg amounts of thyroid hormones in tgold.

From personal experience thyrogold is 'strong '. I take 150- 225mg a day.

At times I have taken tgold and prescription ndt. My experience is that ndt alone is less effective for me. Thyrogold alone is easy to go hyper (both symptomsand bloods ). I used a combination to get near optimal, thyrogold morning, and ndt at night.

Now I only obtain thyrogold and taking it at night gives me cardiac symptoms. Whereas ndt at night may have, but not as noticeably.

This is after calculating t4 t3 amounts in the tgold using the Paul Jones amounts, and equalizing to ndt equivalent.

Anecdotally I would say that eg 20mcgt4/5mcgt3 in thyrogold is stronger than than the same in ndt (nature throid ). I could be imagining it. If it's true then three possible reasons. .

1 the coleus forskolin in thyrogold synergies the hormone content.

2 the coleus forskolin in thyrogold does not synergise, but does cause cardiac symptoms in me

3 thyrogold has more thyroid hormones than predicted from the Paul Jones information

Thyrogold really works but as always the only way to know is to try it methodically.


You may also like...