How to increase T3 level with no hormones on Hashimoto disease?

Hi, I have Hashimoto disease since 2 years and I've gained 15 kg even if I'm eating less and exercise more. I' m trying to self medicate with no hormones. My TPO levels are now decreased and my skin/ hair conditions are improved but I still have lots of water and fat under my skin and a budda belly all day & night long. Never had weight issues, always eat when/what I needed, but now there' s no way to lose weight! It increases every month with my period and never decreases.My T3 level is very low, please can someone suggest a way to increase it with no hormones?Thank you all :-*

26 Replies

Unfortunately if we have low T3 we need thyroid hormones to provide it. Particularly if your body isn't producing any. I shall give you a list of symptoms and tick them off and give to your GP. It is recommended in the UK to prescribe thyroid hormones for hashimotos as the gland is under attack and eventually the person becomes hypothyroid.

Your GP should prescribe levothyroxine (T4) and it has to convert to T3 so you should gradually have increases (initial dose is 50mcg) with a 25mcg increase every six weeks approx).


What are your TSH, FT4 and FT3 levels and ranges? If your thyroid is failing due to Hashimoto's you need replacement thyroid hormone.

There is no cure for Hashimoto's which causes 90% of hypothyroidism. Treatment is for the low thyroid levels it causes. Many people have found that 100% gluten-free diet is helpful in reducing Hashi flares, symptoms and eventually antibodies.

As you are vegan you need to supplement methylcobalamin to maintain B12 levels as B12 cannot be obtained from plant foods.

TSH 2,139 range 0,550- 4,780

T3 2,60 range 2- 4,30

T4 9,50 range 7,60- 17,90


You are unlikely to be offered thyroid hormone replacement with those levels. TSH >2.0 indicates the thyroid is beginning to struggle and T4 and T3 are low in range but NHS in UK wouldn't diagnose hypthyroidism until TSH was >4,780 or T4 was <7.60.

Supplementing 200mcg selenium with a zinc supplement will support thyroid and delay progression to hypothyroidism.

Yes, I do use zinc,selenium and magnesium.

My fear is that if I take hormones, my low thyroid could stop working at all


Taking hormone won't stop your thyroid working but I think it is very unlikely you will be offered a prescription for hormone until either TSH is over range or FT4 below range.

Here in Italy they actually do. They offered me both eutirox and tirosint, my choice.

Blood tests for thyroid hormones should be the very earliest possible, fasting (you can drink water) and allow a gap of 24 hours if you take hormone replacements and take them afterwards.

Ask for TSH, T4, T3, Free T4 and Free T3, B12, Vit D, iron, ferritin and folate and get a print-out from the surgery and put them on a new post for answers. If the lab wont do all of them you can have it privately from one of our recommended labs.

Your weight gain is probably because you are eating less and exercising more. Low calorie diets impact negatively on conversion of T4 to T3, and you therefore have lower levels of T3. Plus the exercise uses up that T3 which you are unable to replace. You therefore get more and more hypo - it's low T3 that causes symptoms like weight-gain - and put on more and more weight.

It is maybe possible to reduce your antibodies with diet, but there is little proof of that, because antibodies fluctuate, anyway. They could go up again. And, improving your diet has possible improved your nutrient levels which would have a positive effect on your skin and hair. But, there is no diet under the sun that will repair the damage to your thyroid, already don't by the Hashi's. You will therefore always be hypo, with low T3, if you do not replace the hormones your thyroid can no-longer make. You cannot replace hormones with... anything, really - except other hormones.

So, if you want to increase your T3 levels, in order to be able to lose weight, you have got to have some form of thyroid hormone replacement.

I notice that I gain weight every month with my period, which is normal, but that weight gain remains instead of return to normal when my period is done.

I also have lots of water under my skin, all over my body :-(

Yes. That's called mucin. It's something only we lucky hypos get. And, all the exercising and all the dieting in the world won't get rid of it. Only optimal T3 will get rid of it.

Please can you tell me the name of T3 that you girls use in the uk?

I'm from Italy and I'd like to compare

Well, I don't live in the UK, so I'm not sure of the name that you get on the NHS. But, in any case, not many people use that, because it's too expensive and the NHS will not prescribe it. So, people by Tiromel from Turkey, T3 from Greece, Cynomel from Mexico, and anything else they can find. But, what is there to compâre?

Because here in Italy people are prescribed for eutirox, ibsa, tirosint and no one is doing well, at all. These kind of medication helps them to normalize hormones level but not the other hypothyroidism issues such as weight gain, water retention, depression etc.

Well, that doesn't really make sense. If the people still have symptoms, then the hormones are not 'level'. Or rather, they're at the wrong level. All those you've mentioned are T4, levothyroxine, not T3. A totally different thing.

T4 is the storage hormone, and needs to be converted into T3, the active hormone. But, not everybody can do that very well, so their FT3 is low, and that's why they still have symptoms.

In the UK, hypos are prescribed levothyroxine by their doctors, and don't always do very well on it. But, if they want to take T3, they usually have to buy it themselves.

You' re right! Lots of people decided to sobstitute these medications with animal thyroid because of T1, T2, T3, T4

There is T3 and T4 in animal thyroid, yes. Whether or not there is any T1 and T2 is doubtful. The thyroid only makes tiny, weeny amount of 1 and 2, because most of it comes from conversion. Would those tiny amounts survive the processing to make it into a pill? There's no proof that they do. If there were known amounts, they would be mentioned on the label. As it says nothing about T1 and T2 on the label, we have to assume that they're not there. :)

May I ask you if you resolved all your hypothyroidism issues using T3 and if it was difficult to find the right dosage?

I don't think I'm the right person to ask that question. I'm not a typical case. I've been hypo since I was a child, and was only diagnosed at 55. I think a lot of permanent damage was done. All I can tell you is that I'm much better on T3 only than I was on T4 only, T4+T3 or NDT. :)

You give hope ;-) And I wish you all the luck

Thank you. To you, too. :)


Have you checked whether there is an Italian brand of Liothyronine (T3)?

Yes, there is Liotir but is very difficult to find a good open minded doctor that can help with the right dose. :-(


Not unlike the UK then :(

Many members buy Tiromel (Turkish), Grossman Cynomel (Mexican) or UniPharma (Greek) which are available online without prescription.

Are evidence that these work? Please say yes :-)


Not according to some endocrinologists who claim T3 is a placebo but the UK prescription T3 and Tiromel both work well for me. Other members prefer UniPharma or Grossman Cynomel.

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