Thyroid UK
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Levothyroxine causing alcohol intolerance. Does switching to NDT help with that?

I used to love a beer or a nice glass of wine. I have hashimoto's so beer is no longer an option due to my wheat/gluten intolerance. Nowaways, whatever I drink whether its cider, wine or even a rum, I find I am in flare-up/pain mode for 2-3 weeks afterwards. It's got to the point where I've all but decided to stop drinking altogether. I'm miserable for my illness and would love to be able to console myself once a week with a nice bottle of red. I'm on 125 mcg Levothyroxine a day. Has anyone found that switching from Levo to NDT alleviates alcohol intolerance?

19 Replies
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I doubt it's the levo. More likely to be the hypothyroidism.

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I've only been on Levo for a year. Could drink fine before then.

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Well, l was on levo for about 5 years, and l could drink alcohol, no problem.

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Lucky you!

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Nope, sorry. I can't drink much alcohol at all on NDT. A glass at most.

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Thanks Jazz. So you pretty much gave up?

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Yep. It's just not worth feeling so awful.

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That's really where I'm at right now. But it is so depressing. Thanks for taking the time to respond.

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Did you get prescribed NDT or are you sourcing it yourself?

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Isn't it? And people don't understand, I find. Hey ho... ::)

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hypoash Have a read of this blog post on The Gluten Doctors glutendoctors.blogspot.co.u...

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Hi Susie, thanks for the link. I had read something similar before I think. My nutritionist had advised me to avoid anything involving yeast so I defaulted to rum but I overdid it one night and ended up feeling rotten for about 3 weeks afterwards. What I'm finding difficult is how so many of my long-standing friendships are based around drinks.

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If you had to give up drink for the benefit of your health, would you lose those friendships?

This is an American site (I think) but has some familiar names and might be worth looking through urbantastebud.com/gluten-fr...

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If you can drive to the gathering you can't drink.

In my circle of friends there are people who never drink for a variety of reasons and people who don't drink intermittently. So to avoid questions from others who don't know them that well they tend to drive if meeting up.

BTW there are gluten free beers but that won't solve the yeast problem.

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Hi Bluebug, the issue isn't so much about avoiding gluten since I've been doing that for some time now. It's just more that I find I cannot tolerate alcohol since I began taking the Levo. I get aches & pains all over, similar to an autoimmune flare-up and it takes days and weeks to get back to feeling relatively normal again. I had read similar tales of people finding the same as me with Levo/alcohol and I really wanted to try and find out whether those who've replaced the Levo with NDT have found they could tolerate alcohol easier on NDT.

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I stopped drinking because I got hangovers that lasted for days. It is not the levo its the illness.

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That's the same for me however I'm convinced it's the Levo. I've only been on levy for a year but, like most, I was ill for a long time before I was diagnosed. I never had the same intolerance to alcohol before Levo.

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Alcohol intolerance is definitely a symptom of hypothyroid. I've experienced it myself on all the major types of hormone replacement.

But I've also found that all these symptoms ebb and flow. Since I've started to improve on NDT, I get a lot more different niggling specific symptoms. Whereas before I was medicated it was just enormous weakness and not many specific symptoms. I don't know whether it's that I was too tired to notice before, or that they really are brand new symptoms.

I do a lot of searching now for better non-alcoholic drinks. I brew a couple of different fermented drinks myself, and enjoy squeezed grapefruit, fresh lemonade and iced tea, etc. I judge bars and restaurants on whether they do the same. Also, when out with friends I half pretend I am drinking (or taking other drugs), and no one really noticed I've only had a drop. Although I do notice in myself and others, you lose a few friends when you get sick. That's one of the worst things about it :(

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That's really interesting, thanks for taking the time to respond. I can definitely relate to how feeling massively unwell means it's difficult to pick out specific symptoms & possible causes. I am typing this from my doctor's waiting room, I've just found out lactose free levo is a possibility so I am asking to have my prescription changed. Always learning. This forum is a massive help! Thanks again.

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