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Thyroid UK
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The reason for cholesterol increase in hypothyroidism

I heard one finnish functional doctor talk about this and googled a bit.


"A consequence of hypothyroidism is a slowing of the body's ability to process cholesterol. This processing lag is largely explained by a reduction in the number and activity of LDL receptors, which have the function of helping metabolize LDL cholesterol. When the number of receptors decreases, LDL accumulates in the blood-stream, acting to increase both LDL and total cholesterol levels.16

Another reason for cholesterol increase is that hypothyroidism significantly alters the metabolism of steroid and other hormones, including their rates of secretion or production, plasma concentrations and plasma protein binding, flux through various compartments and rate and pathway of catabolism in the liver or other metabolizing tissues. These changes in steroid-hormone metabolism are attributed to the action of thyroid hormones on controlling various rate-limiting enzymes and to the concentration of critical cofactors in the metabolizing tissues.17 Consider that progesterone is synthesized from pregnenolone, which in turn is derived from cholesterol. Like-wise, vitamin D is produced through the action of ultraviolet irradiation (UV) on cholesterol in the skin, or more specifically, 7-dehydrocholesterol. Since hypothyroid-ism reduces the conversion of cholesterol into progesterone and vitamin D, more cholesterol is left metabolized, thereby contributing to total cholesterol load."

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So I am not a biochemist, a metabolic expert, or anything actually useful, but that makes so much sense.

The actul pathways affected by thyroid hormone are so often ignored. Maybe lower body temperature, and general expressions including the word "slow", but not the chemistry. It is next to impossible to find half an explanation of the non-pitting swelling we know as myxoedema despite it being eponymous for hypothyroidism.


Meant to add that your (Justiina's) Nightingale test post the other day fits very nicely with this.

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Exactly, it simply makes sense.

It wasn't mentioned in this article , but that functional doctor also mentioned that hypothyroidism does not only slow down the process of metabolising cholesterol , but decreases the production of cholesterol anyway.

In that light it's a double whammy to prescribe statins as then you have even less to convert to other hormones even though you have cholesterol pooling in your system.

So lowering cholesterol is not the solution , as we most know already ,low cholesterol is unhealthy and high cholesterol more likely a sign of illness than true hyperlipidemia.

Modern medicine even though said it's so effective is so far from real human functions. This functional doctor said that in reality we only have two curative methods and it's antibiotics and cancer medication. We can kill bacteria and cancer cells. Otherwise it's all just replacing, blocking or interfering the process.


Thank you so much for this interesting link. I specially liked the section about iodine/iodide : " A 1:2 ratio of iodine to potassium iodide (inorganic iodine/iodide solution) provided from 12.5-37.5 mg elemental iodine may be effective for hypothyroidism and related high cholesterol levels.

It’s important to supplement with selenium and glutathione along with iodine/iodide".

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A higher cholesterol is usually always shown if hypo, the only problem is that doctors are unaware that an increased dose of thyroid hormones will reduce it and they offer Statins instead of offering hormones which are life-giving for us as they are more interested in TSH than the other more important hormones FT4 and fT3.


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