Thyroid UK

Weight Gain

Hi, I was diagnosed 2001 under active thyroid, I was 51 years old and 7 stone, I had always been thin, since then I have progressively gained weight, I have never had a lot of interest in food so was surprised to see the weight pile on, (mainly around the middle) it is now 2017 and I am about 13 stone size 24, I now have Emphysema so exercise is very difficult, catch 22 I need to exercise but the breathing condition won't let me, any thoughts.

4 Replies

Do you have any other symptoms, do you smoke? Don't worry, not lecturing as I do too, just wondering lol.

You could try anti-inflammatory diet that may or may not help with inflammation in your lungs - primarily gluten free but also sugar etc. It has helped my nan considerably who has emphysema and she hasn't succumbed to it as quickly as some. Many people with autoimmune issues such as hypothyroidism, like myself, often feel better when GF free anyway and has reduced my antibodies so may help other issues also.

How is your digestive system. I had no real interest in food most of my life either as never gave me any energy and always made me feel less energetic but since going gluten free, I am hungry quite a lot and have lost a lot of weight at the same time. Smoking will decrease your appetite.

My mum also doesn't eat enough either and has always made her put weight on - I think some determine this as "starvation mode" - which will make you store more especially if under 1000 calories a day. Also bear in mind that it's harder to keep weight off the older you get and many healthy people put weight on around the middle.

If you don't eat enough, it is also likely that you have various deficiencies, have you had these tested, if not, might be worth doing - vit b12, folate, ferritin, vit d etc etc.

It useful if you can copies of your latest blood tests and post them on here so people can see if anything pops out. They would be able to see if you are under-medicated thyroid wise which would slow your metabolism and increase weight a little. (although I don't think more than a stone)

It may be worth talking to someone about exercise that might suit you, I know my nan always kept going for walks as this can be just as healthy as more full-on exercise. She also did things like yoga and light exercise for short periods of time but it's best probably to talk to an exercise expert lol!

Anyway, just a few thoughts :-D


Do you have any copies of recent blood test with ranges, you may be undermedicated, or not optimally medicated. If you don't have any go to your dr surgery and ask for a print out. You are entitled to these but they may charge a small amount for printing. Mine has never charged but some do. Once you get them make a new post and put your blood results on it with your medication and dosage.


Weight-gain is one of the principal symptoms of low thyroid. And, as others have said, it sounds like you are a) under-medicated and/or b) not eating enough.

A low calorie diet has a negative effect on conversion of T4 (levo) to T3. It is low T3 that causes weight-gain. So, if you don't eat enough, you will put on more weight.

And, if your T3 is not optimal, exercise will also have a negative effect, because it uses up your T3 at an alarming rate. And you will have difficulty replacing it, as you are hypo, and you will put on more weight. Exercise won't make you lose weight, anyway. So, just gentle walking, swimming or yoga, until your T3 is optimal.

You don't tell us what you are taking, nor how much, but the odds are you either need an increase in dose, or a change to a different type of thyroid hormone replacement. Can you give us more detail, please, to help us help you? :)


Hi thetinlid, I learned from a man who has almost cured his wife of Emphysema with vitamins, instead of being in a hospital bed facing death, she now pops into town on a bus and helps with gardening. In turn I told a neighbor, now that neighbor's Emphysema has got so much better on these vitamins, she told me her friends have noticed the difference. Last time I went round to see this 75 yr old at Christmas and give her the vitamins (D3 +K2 and A,) she had ordered, she was running around her home with so much energy and no puffing or moaning at all, I actually forgot to ask her how well she was feeling.

Also these vitamins helped my Mum with her COPD and her Doctor down graded her COPD to mild, they also helped my husband with his asthma, he no longer needs his daily preventative inhaler. Both D3 + K2 and A are anti inflammatory and are known to help lungs. The retinoic acid in the vitamin A for both COPD and Emphysema helps renew and rebuild the damaged air sacs in the lungs.


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