Treating Graves Disease the natural way

I have been treating the symptoms of Graves disease for the past three and a half months. I have had some great improvements, and I also still do not feel well. Improvements: my hands are not shaking anymore; my handwriting is better; I can hold a cup of coffee in my hands without turning it into a milk shake. Normal stool, with much less frequency; free of stomach pain; less pain in my body; less hair loss. Things which have not improved: My heart still beats too fast; eyes are bulging a little; swelling around eyes and eyeballs look glassy; bloodtests no changes. Talking to my GP, who has been very supportive with my journey, she now suggests for me to go on low doses of Thyroid medication, and I really have to agree with her. I have the choice of PTU or MMI. I have done a lot of research on both drugs, and MMI comes out better with less sideeffects. Love to know if anyone had experience with either of these drugs. I intent to continue with my natural treatments, and include a low dose of thyroid medication. Question now: Why didn't it work the natural way when there are so many expert posts, books, videos out there to tell us it is possible? I still believe it is possible, however, I found that one gets very little support from alternative medicine practitioners due to their lack of knowledge. The best success I have had is with chinese medicine, however, I have done all the research myself. Western Herbs are good to keep symptoms at bay, however, no cure. They are all happy to help me once I am on medication, however, they do not help otherwise. I can help myself once I am on medication. Reason why I have decide to do it now is that I am concerned about the effect on my heart is I don't, and also my bones. I only weigh 46kg, and have no energy.

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20 Replies

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  • Did you try gluten free? If so and you still are, although some things improved by three months, some of my problems didn't resolve til six months and even a little longer for some. If you have a problem with something effecting your immune system, it can be a good while for your immune system to dampen down so if you feel better whatever you're doing, keep doing it :-)

    Also, it is very hard, if not impossible, to get your body to forget it was making antibodies towards things once it has already started but these things can help it not get worse or cause additional problems

  • Thank you for this post!!! Yes, I am gluten free, and it has made a difference. I am happy you are pointing out that things take time; sometimes we are so impatient to get better, and often it is the pressure of family and friends telling you that it is not working. I agree with you, our body has a cellular memory!

  • Yes especially with antibodies as these are designed to never forget. Once we have have antibodies to a particular virus, it is designed never to forget that virus so we never catch it again. Unfortunately, our bodies decided not to like certain body parts :-( lol

  • It may not resolve your thyroid issues as may be too late - my thyroid was already too damaged by the time I went GF - however, it did improve so many other things like fatigue and stomach and deficiencies and did seem to reverse my adrenal failure and diabeties that were starting to happen so fingers crossed caught in time for these. Hopefully it was in time for you :-)

  • Oops, I should add, I am not suggesting you shouldn't take meds if you need them :-D

  • You know, I've been giving this lits of thought. Like " your body is attacking your thyroid". Why??? Our bodies are so perfect in their function, why would it attack it's own. It is too clever for that. What are we doing to ourselves that body goes in overdrive?

  • There's lots of theories especially relating to lower amounts of autoimmunity in third world countries. Some say bad diet or things we shouldn't have been eating, messing around with genetics in food, the chemicals put on food as it's growing, the hormones in meat, no longer having enough germs/parasites to keep our immune systems entertained, breeding ourselves weaker as no longer survival of the fittest and so on. Who knows? Some have even suggested gluten being an issue as coeliacs is the only autoimmune disease with a known cause and heavily associated with all the rest so maybe the cause of most?

    What I do know in my case, was the gluten thing came first, I had such bad stomach problems from a young age and often came home from school after lunch in agony and had a lot of deficiencies - doc told my mum to give me more whole wheat lol!!! :-( By the time I hit 13, thyroid was packing in and everything went bad. None of these issues were actually treated until I was 20. It has been proven now that gluten causes systemic inflammation in me and this causes a lot of pressure on all your systems and can make your immune system act crazy.

    However, sometimes I wonder on the other hand, what would have happened if my thyroid didn't slow down and start putting my system into a very slow metabolic state? Would my extremely bad nutritional status have meant I survived a shorter amount of time???? Bodies try and do what they can to keep you alive the longest. Was it a protective decision or something that helped cope with the deficiencies???? It is well known that under deficiency or inability to function optimally that your body will generally redirect what it can to your essential organs - heart, lungs, brain that controls these and these are the few things that I've never heard of an autoimmune disease affecting -not commonly anyway. Maybe some parts of the brain but not the parts that work your heart/lungs? At least not many I've come across. Maybe autoimmunity is your bodies way of shutting non-essential parts down in order to be able to redirect?????

    Later on, my adrenals and pancreas were packing in - this completely reversed after going GF as had only just begun. All the problems I had since a child also reversed - apart from thyroid as already too dead. During major infections and things, it is known that you can have thyroid issues temporarily, and your body does many things like force iron into storage. So if you have something wrong chronically that is not being dealt with, why wouldn't your body do the same on a more permanent basis. Many people I've heard of who begin to have thyroid issues seem to have major nutritional deficiencies for some reason or other and maybe these came first??

    Or maybe just bad genetics and survival of people who maybe woudn't have survived to have children 200 yrs ago spreading our crappy genes lol!

    Well these are just my ponderings that I haven't been able to answer yet lol. Obviously graves is a little different lol!

  • Thank you, very interesting!

  • Eating gluten and casein which look like the thyroid to the body(molecular mimmickry)

    When eaten and minute particles get in to the bloodstream through intestinal impermeability(leaky gut) the body sends T cells to attack the foreign bodies but then mistakanly attacks the thyroid as well.

  • Yes, I have heard much about this but something must have allowed it through and damaged the stomach in the first place?

    Oooh I've just seen that the NHS have actually put a page up about "leaky gut" - oooh sarcasm - they use a lot "exclamation" marks about "leaky gut" and how people supposedly "treat" and "cure" it lol!

    I would expect better of them to do this actually - surely they should a have a more "mature" and "clinical" approach even if to disregard it lol!

    Actually I will read up on this aspect as haven't done so far so thanks for reminding me :-)

  • For the NHS you have to talk about intestinal permeability 😀

    I had so many tests on the NHS for my bloating, I'd gain nearly a stone in weight and look fully pregnant. They even sent me for several scans thinking air must have been getting in...

    No one in that time thought to test for gluten sensitivities or "leaky gut" would have saved a lot of money! Serves them right for poo pooing!

  • Lmao - yes me too, they've wanted me permanently on all sorts of expensive meds for various random disorders over the last twenty years which luckily I declined and they've now had to agree that gluten had been the problem all along after I managed to prove it.

    They did the same with my daughter who was one at the time. After weaning she really did look pregnant to the extent that the GP actually visibly panicked and sent her for emergency scan. They informed me that she just had a very very large stomach and said you just have to hope she grows into it some day when she's an adult with a somewhat pitiful look on their face lol. It disappeared the minute I made her give up gluten a few years later along with her eczema, pale skin, coughing asthma, painful legs and knees and toddler diarrhea (they said)!!!

    Sooo glad I figured this out for myself for my daughter's sake - they make me sooo mad even for the basics and some of the ones I hear about on here are downright awful!! They get paid far too much to be this crap!!!

  • Unbelievable! Horrendous when it's babies. Yes they're paid far too much!

  • Hi Namaste,

    I'm sorry that you're still experiencing these frustrating symptoms but we'll done for trying the herbal route first. You know it may well have helped on the immune side and will bolster your meds. I fought medication for a long time (due to endo n go ignorance) but eventually found a good endo who, like your gp, suggested low dose n careful monitoring. I found it amazing. I started carbimazole at 1.25mg and had No side effects. I increased slowly but became withstood at 2.5my and am now rereading down again after being euthyroid for almost a year. Now obviously your doses might be different but having a go that is willing to support you is the best thing you could have. That and a strong trust in your knowledge about graves and yourself!! In response to others who are blaming modern diets etc they should search the origins of the term graves disease. It was named after the Irish doctor who described it in 1835. Now I'm Irish and I can tell you from my history class that gluten or modern diet or modern chemicals or antibiotics were not the cause of the graves disease in 1835 Ireland where people survived on a very plant based diet, so much so that there was a famous famine not too much later when crops failed. Further research also suggests cases of graves disease going back at least as far as the 12th century. Point being- this is not a modern disease so it's causes may not be modern either!

  • Oh I apologize for the typos. My stupid phone does this a lot and I should have read it over more carefully before posting

  • I didn't fully blame modern diets for these diseases, just mentioned a possibility amongst many others. Of course these diseases have existed for hundreds of years but never at this rate and were uncommon. Robert graves described one case. Autoimmune diseases have become rife in recent years. My nan is one of ten and none of them have had any issues yet many of their kids and grandchildren have autoimmune issues of some sort so something is going on somewhere and it would be silly to ignore it. The excuse given for why I wasn't diagnosed sooner back in the 80s was that it didn't normally happen to people my age and was more commonly associated with older menopausal women and the stats agreed with this at the time. It's certainly not the case anymore.

    Gluten is just one option, people certainly never ate it for breakfast, dinner and tea until more recently where it is now contained in absolutely everything. Like I said who knows the reason behind the majority of it, but I know it was primarily gluten in my case (and maybe a mix of the other issues too) :-)

  • Hi SaggyUK,

    I didn't mean to say that you totally blame gluten. I know what you mean with the increase but Elaine Moore also notes that many cases of hyperthyroidism probably went unchecked or unnoticed and possibly still do. I said those who claim meaning lots of people, not just you. There is also significant evidence that the rise in autoimmunity may be a result of better health care and sanitation.

    I always try to provide another opinion when it comes to gluten as some aggressive anti-gluten, clean eating advocates (which I do not think you are) really messed with my head during my journey. I am very much not affected by gluten, and I realise this is lucky. However there are so many naturopaths and holistic practitioners that would claim that everyone is allergic. Which I consider quite misleading, you know? I am so glad it worked well for you and I suppose it doesn't hurt to try. However I just like to provide a counterpoint.

    Best wishes =)

  • Yes, it's good to provide a counterpoint, actually I often do just to annoy people even if I don't agree with what I'm saying lol :-/

    Yes, I will always suggest it because the improvements I've had and in these situations where you can barely get out of bed, it's good to try and rule out every possibility but yes, I understand it wont work for everyone and yes, some definitely go too far. I like chocolate too much to eat that clean lol :-)

  • Thank you Cat. I went gluten free & took probiotics, & that really settled my gut. I eat well & I find my body is starting to absorb some food ( less frequent bowel movements). I don't believe it either that Graves is due to leaky gut, but the eay our food is grown does not help. Just took my first 2.5mg of Neo Mercazole ( that's what the drug is called in Australia), & I'll go from here. I am grateful to everyone replying.

  • I felt extremely unwell when diagnosed with graves. My t4 was very over range and I really couldn't function at all. I felt much better very quickly after starting carbimazole but I developed hives after around 4 weeks and so was changed on to ptu. Carbimazole is the first choice drug, ptu second because it is believed slightly riskier unless pregnant. Other than the rash which was easily sorted I experienced no side effects from the drugs. I was also on a beta blocker to relieve symptoms until the anti thyroid medicine kicked in. I had been feeling so awful it was amazing to feel better really quite quickly. Good luck.

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