Gaviscon/Ranitadine and Levothyroxine


I've been suffering from gastritis which has been very painful and my doctor has recently changed my medication to help control my stomach acid levels to Ranitadine which he said I can take with Gaviscon. I gather there is a potential for the Gaviscon to interfere with the absorbtion of my Levothyroxine. Has anyone got any advice on the best timing for taking this combination of medication to avoid interfering with the Levothyroxine absorbtion? My GP instructed me to take the Ranitadine at night.


33 Replies

  • Sorry not able to help with taking your potions - although I am sure Gaviscon will affect absorption. Have just had a read through your post and thread of 3 months ago and can see that you have a very low T3. Am wondering if you were able to do anything about this ? ....

    I only mention this as mostly hypo people suffer with low acid which can present with similar symptoms to high acid. Every cell in the body - trillions and trillions of them - needs T3 - so when low there is not enough T3 to go around - and so things begin to go wrong - usually in our weakest bits.

    I believe lots of people on this forum have tried and succeeded with more natural products to help their digestion.

  • Lowering stomach acid can also affect B12 absorbtion which would correlate with low t3. Have you been tested for h pylori?

    I had low stomach acid and found that taking digestive enzymes with meals, soluble vit c, kefir (lots and lots of beneficial bacteria including those that digest lactose) was a good help. There are also very helpful amino acids available. L -glutamine is very soothing for digestive tract, so is glycine (jelly) and n-acetyl-cysteine which is harsher (must be eaten with meals) as it will destroy h-pylori's protective coating.

    I also eat salad with cider vinegar dressing. Many people have cider vinegar as a drink to help. I love the kefir as it is replacing bad bacteria with good bacteria.

  • Yes I recently was tested for H Pylori, the result was negative but as I'd recently been taking proton pump inhibitors (ended up with violent diarrhoea hence the change to the Ranitidine) I gather there is a potential for that test result to be inaccurate. Doctor has now referred me for an endoscopy.

  • I would mention that you have thyroid disease and therefore could be prone to low stomach acid and ask the doctor to measure your acid levels during the endoscopy to ensure you get the correct treatment.

  • Sorry, I posted my responsein the wrong place.

  • If you can watch this wonderful doctor explain the whole thyroid system, he explains issues of digestion and acid.

    It's a video I'll never tire of watching as it reminds me of all the different things we need to check in our body

  • Thanks for Dr Bradshook! Super!

  • Oh my god Ranitadine is a dreadful drug. Especially not good for Hypothyroid.

  • Sandybeach1964, can you please explain why?

  • Because like was mentioned earlier as Hypo patients we have low stomach acid not high. Plus side effects include blood immunoglobulin e (immune response) and eosinophil (white blood cell) count increases, diarrhea, kidney infections, insomnia, gastritis, migraines and cognitive problems, according to the eHealth Me website.

  • Hi Marz, my B12 is scraping the bottom of the range too. I spoke to my GP about the prospect of getting some T3 but she wouldn't go there and has upped my Levothyroxine to 125mg instead. I'm a very strict vegetarian so I've started to try including some nutritional yeast into my diet to boost my B12. Am feeling tired, sick and achy generally but particularly my feet. :-/

  • Your B12 is needed at around 1000 - so the only viable thing for you to do is have injections. You buy them from a website in Germany and find someone to inject you if you do not want to do it yourself. B12 deficiency is a neurological condition and is linked to brain shrinkage too. The range starts at 500 in Japan - hence they have a lower rate of Alzheimers and Dementia in the population than in the UK. I would also add your own T3.

  • I am vegan - nutritional yeast isn't enough to raise your B12 if it is already too low - even with added B12 (tried it for a couple of years). Try sublingual methylcobalamin 5000iu per day. I get the Jarrow ones from Amazon - if you use the TUK link you can make some money for them when you buy.

  • Don't beg your doc for T3, get it from Greece, I'll pm you if no one else already has. From my own experience you have to up your T4 pretty high before you start to get adequate T3 being generated - then super high T4 might cause other problems. I had to go to 150 mcg of Levo before I got adequate T3 to make me feel normal.

  • Thanks for all the helpful responses guys, what I can't get my head around though is that initially when I had the first episode of 'gastritis ' I took protien pump inhibitors for a month and it completely went away but when I stopped taking them after a week or so the 'gastritis ' (if that's what it is) returned; this makes me think that in my case it sounds like too much acid not too little in my stomach? My dose was then increased which is when I had the diarrhea. Confused and don't really know what to do for the best.

  • Why not try the natural way - Betaine and HCL - before meals seems to work for many. You need to wean yourself off the PPI's as they are very addictive - take it slowly and introduce the natural products. PPI's are intended as a short 8 week course in most cases - as detailed in the PIL - I have read from others.

    There are home tests to check for low or high acid. Although you have possibly suppressed yours now. B12 deficiency is known to cause digestive problems - so maybe that is an area you should research.

    Scroll down the page to find the signs and symptoms which includes the gastro-intestinal ones. Acid Reflux or GERD is included. So as I have previously mentioned your low B12 needs attention and not just with Brewers Yeast.

  • I would do a little experiment... come off the medication for high acid for a while, and try the bicarb test. Drink a glass of water with a spoonful of bicarb in it, and see how long it takes you to burb. If it takes a long time, you have low acid. Sorry, I can't be more precise than that, but I have never tried it myself. But lots of people here have, so hopefully, someone else will explain it better - or start a new thread asking how it works.

    That will give you a better idea of whether you have high or low acid. If you have low acid, you would be better off with betain and pepsin, or apple cider vinager. If you have high acid, and need some form of medication to lower it, make sure you leave six hours between your levo and the medication, on either side. And keep a close eye on your nutrients : vit D, vit B12, folate and ferritin. :)

  • I agree with greygoose . I did this test, you need to take half level teaspoon of Bicarbonate of soda in half a cup of water first thing in the morning. Do this on empty stomach, if you don't have big burp ( little efforts don't count) within 4 minutes it is a good indicator of low acid. Do this 3 mornings in a row. x

  • Thank you, Mango, I couldn't remember the details! I shall take note! :)

  • My pleasure greygoose have a lovely day x

  • Hi, PPi's lower your stomach acid, they should not be used for more than 8 weeks. I was treated exactly like you and ended up in even more pain and discomfort , with embarrassing burping all the time. You more than likely have low acid even though Doctors keep prescribing acid lowering c..p! Do yourself a big favour stop that prescribed rubbish today! Low stomach acid can lead to H Pylori ( I have had the T shirt), and stomach ulcers ( another T shirt). It as taken a few months but finally I am winning on this awful complaint. I have been Gluten Free for 10 months, I take pre and pro biotics daily, Aloe Vera ( Holland & Barrett do lovely one with Cranberry check for the penny and half price sales and stock up). Also Amazons Apple Cider Vinegar with the mother. Mix 1 tablespoon with half cup water ( preferably spring water if fluoride in your water supply?) drink through a straw to safe guard your tooth enamel. Sip this mixture with your meal, I have found this the best way to help, you can drink it before meal too, or when in discomfort. I hardly have to take this now. I have recently added Kyolic Garlic 1000 to my supplements. I found that pork and red meat used to cause the worst pain. I eat mainly chicken now but can tolerate some red meats. Also avoid cold drinks during your meal. I do not eat after 6pm and breakfast 14 hours after. I have actually lost 2 stones with this new regime and that was a BIG BONUS for me. I add Waitrose's 'A dash of Sicilian lemon' to some of my drinking water, it's gorgeous and in the baking section( it's not made from concentrate either), this is so refreshing especially in this heat.

    This sounds like a lot but I had an ulcer to sort out and H Pylori was eradicated with anti biotics, I would start with the pre and pro biotics and DEFINITELY the vinegar.

    Gut health is so important ( most of our immune system is there), since improving this I am feeling better on the whole and have more good days with my Hashimotos. If you decide to take Betaine make sure that you do not have stomach ulcers please, it shouldn't be used if you do... Best Wishes to you x

  • You get a rebound effect with PPIs, which is why it is so hard to get off them.

  • It's absolutely vital that you address the B12 deficiency as a priority. I cannot understand why your doc thought adding more Levo would help your B12, that's just wrong!!!!

    I'm more than a little dubious about brewer's yeast as a source of b12.

    Quote from Boots website: 'It's a nutritional myth that Brewer's yeast is a rich source of vitamin B12 - it isn't. In nature, Brewer's yeast naturally grows alongside bacteria which can make B12, but the purified forms of yeast found in supplement pills are B12 free.'

    Please go with Marz' advice and ask to have B12 injections.

    A multi-mineral mix in soluble form will help right now, as you're going to struggle with digesting much on your current meds. I take it whenever I'm run down with some soluble vitamin C.

  • Have just posted above similarly :-)

  • I like your link to B12 deficiency.

    Here's a link to the multi mineral mix that gives me a boost when I'm run-down.

  • Thank you for the link - am a great fan of Dr Myhill and have read her book - Sustainable Medicine. Someone has borrowed it and I cannot remember who :-)

  • Thanks, wow, the book you've read looks great. I'll buy it. (I already have the one on chronic fatigue, which has been a lifesaver.)

    Interestingly enough, I used the Mineral Mix last night as I'd become pretty dehydrated in the heat and I always find that it works really well and very quickly. Sports electrolyte tablets (which are more portable) are good too, but are quite ££.

    This is such a great forum for helping each other out!

  • Wow! Lots of information there guys. Thank you. :-)

  • Hi Karen, I just want to say I totally agree with all the advice you've been given. Like you I had acid reflux and was referred to a gastroenterologist who put me on Omeprezole. I had to go off them for two weeks in order to have a gastroenteroscopy (sorry not sure if that's how you spell it) and the doctor said I actually didn't have high stomach acid. He didn't actually connect the dots and figure out that LOW stomach acid (which mimics high stomach acid in some ways) is an typical symptom of hypothyroidism. Luckily for me I was off the Omeprezole and so I just stayed off. I also take Betain with Pepsin tablets with meat and apple cider vinegar with it's mother (available from Amazon) and now I don't have any problems except when I eat gluten (yesterday in bed with a headache all day because I inadvertently ate some).

    So you could do the above, find out what your food intolerances are (if any), go gluten free and think about self medicating with T3. If you go down that route, as I have, please post your latest blood results and let the members her advise you if they think its a good idea based on your results - and how to make the transfer. You need to lower your levothyroxine and make up the difference with T3 - but T3 is three times as strong so you need to do some maths!!! You also need to start low and slow. I was taking 75 mcg levothyroxine and I now take 50 mcg levothyroxine and 12 1/2 T3 (a half a tablet of the 25mcg Greek T3).

    I am feeling a whole lot better now. I also take B12 lozenges (Jarrow) which I also get at Amazon (recommended by this website), D with K2, and folate.

    Wishing you the best of luck on this journey!! But I heartily agree that you need to get off the PPIs.


    We need very good levels of magnesium, as well as vitamin D for thyroid hormones to work well, so yet another reason to avoid

    I agree totally with all the advice re LOW stomach acid.

  • This link is to Dr Myhill's page about low stomach acid

    Has someone mentioned that taking PPIs such as Omeprazole for too long can cause low B12 as you need acid to absorb vits and minerals?

  • I'm so grateful for all your help. Thank you. X

  • To be at its most effective Levothyroxine should always be taken first thing in the morning at least half an hour prior to eating and drinking tea/coffee etc. I obtained this information from a senior nurse at The Royal Marsden who deals with thyroid problems.

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