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Thyroid UK
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Hashimoto, cholesterol, auto-immune, gluten free: confusion


I could really do with some help. I am 2 years in to a Hashimoto diagnosis and take 75mg levo in the morning with my cup of tea. I may have had this for a long time and have had many years of symptoms including extreme insomnia (2-3hours sleep per night).

My latest fasting bloods were:

March 2017

•Serum B12 - normal; Serum folate - normal

•Lymphocyte - low (1.2 with reference range 1.3 - 3.5)

•T4 & TSH normal

•Serum ferritin Normal

•Serum HDL Cholesterol high (6.6 with reference range <5.0)

•Serum LDL Cholesterol high (3.8 with reference range 0.0 - 3.0)

•Serum non high density lipoprotein Cholesterol level high (4.3 with reference range 0.0 - 3.9)

•Blood sugars normal

Aug 2016

•Calcium & Vitamin D low

•Serum thyroid peroxidase AB - >600.0 iu/mL (0.0 – 34.0 reference range)


My diet is generally good but I was eating a lot of cheese, which I have dropped from my diet. I drink more than I should at say 1.5 bottles of wine a week. I eat too many biscuits and cakes say 4 biscuits daily and chocolate in the evening.

I try to exercise but this has dropped in the last 3-4 months due to pressure of work and feeling exhausted. I have changed my work pattern now.

I used to smoke but gave up completely around 4-5 years ago after a number of stages of stopping and starting. I am 58yo woman.


My mother has had vascular dementia for 14 years and high cholesterol is an indicator for this but statins are really not recommended as evidenced in this article (https://people.csail.mit.edu/seneff/why_statins_dont_really_work.html).

I feel unwell and overwhelmed, do I need to:

•Take Vit D, B range, K, calcium

•CoQ10 & Krill oil for brain function

•Go gluten free

•Go auto immune diet

•Stop work and lie down forever?

Thank you, you generous people.


4 Replies

Hi, could you please post your TSH and T4 results with ranges as well as your B12 and folate. Normal could mean anything! Also, did you know you should take your thyroid meds on an empty stomach with a glass of water and then not eat or drink anything except for water for one hour to ensure you fully benefit from the thyroid meds?


You swallow levothyroxine when you get up with one full glass of water and wait an hour before eating. Food interferes with the uptake of hormones as does caffeine in tea or coffee.

When you post results we also have to have the ranges. These are figures in brackets after the result. 'Normal' isn't Optimal and we have to have everything 'OPTIMAL', ie vitamins and minerals and results of thyroid hormone blood tests. We need numbers plus the ranges (the figures in brackets).

Low B12 can cause dementia/alzeimers. Your mother could have had undiagnosed pernicious anaemia or hypothyroidism. It isn't unusual to be undiagnosed. High Cholesterol is also a clinical symptom of hypothyroidism and I'll give you a list and tick off the ones you have, Make an appointment with your GP and see what he offers to bring your vitamins/minerals back to 'optimum' ie top of range not middle of bottom.

You need your doctor to do the following, TSH, T4, T3, Free T4, Free T3. Antibodies attack the thyroid gland and wax and wane until you are hypothyroid. You can help prevent attacks (or lower them) by eating gluten-free food.


Blood tests have to be at the very earliest, fasting (you can drink water) and allow a gap of 24 hours between your last dose of levo and test and take afterwrds. This gives the best results as TSH is highest early a.m. and drops throughout the day and most doctors only look at the TSH and nlothing else.

Always get a print-out from the surgery of your results with the ranges. We are entitled by Law and post if you have a query.

High cholesterol lowers, usually, when we are on an optimum of thyroid hormones. We don't need statins to do this. You can see from link above how many symptoms you have.

1 like

Thank you for replying Nanaedake & Shaws.

I have learned today from this board about taking my meds with water and delaying for caffeine etc. I can make that change.

I have rewritten the blood results:

March 2017 - fasting

• Serum B12; 225ng/L [197.0-771.0]***

• Serum folate; 7.4ug/L [3.9 – 25.0]***

• Lymphocyte; 1.2 10*9/L [1.3 - 3.5]

• Serum free T4 – 15.4 pmol/L [12.0 – 22.0]

• Serum TSH – 2.35 mu/L [0.27 – 4.2]

• Serum ferritin – 82ug/L [13.0 – 150.0]***

• C reactive protein 0.3 mg/L [0.0 – 5.0]

• Serum total Cholesterol; 6.6 mmol/L [<5.0]

• Serum LDL Cholesterol; 3.8 mmol/L [0.0 - 3.0]

• Serum non high density lipoprotein Cholesterol level; 4.3 mmol/L [0.0 - 3.9]

• Triglyceride; 1.0 mmol/L [<2.0]

Aug 2016

• Serum adjusted Calcium concentration 2.10 mmol/L [2.15 – 2.5]***

• Serum total 25-hydroxy Vitamin D; 37 nmol/L [50.0 – 120.0]***

• Serum thyroid peroxidase AB - >600.0 iu/mL [0.0 – 34.0]

About getting the GP to help bring my vitamins/minerals back to 'optimum' ie top of range not middle of bottom I imagine these are the ones I should ask to be assessed:

•Calcium, Vitamin D, K, B12, folate, ferritin

•What about selenium?

And to ask for;

•TSH, T4, T3, Free T4, Free T3

Should my TPOAB be tested too?

Regarding cholesterol I think i need the GP to understand that this symptom should be treated via the thyroid/hashimoto’s rather than statins. I took statins for about 6 weeks but have stopped in the last 2 weeks because of the contra indications in the research.

I will work toward a gluten free diet. I will stick with the CoQ10 and Krill Oil to help with the fear as much as anything else!

Thank you so much,

1 like

When optimally medicated, all clinical symptoms should disappear so don't need separate prescriptions for symptoms.

Re your 2017 results. These aren't optimal:-

• Serum B12; 225ng/L [197.0-771.0]***

• Serum folate; 7.4ug/L [3.9 – 25.0]***

• Lymphocyte; 1.2 10*9/L [1.3 - 3.5]

• Serum free T4 – 15.4 pmol/L [12.0 – 22.0]

• Serum TSH – 2.35 mu/L [0.27 – 4.2]

B12 should be increased to around 1,000 (updated it is recommended- to avoid dementia )

Supplements with sublingual B12 methylcobalamin.

TSH at 2.35 - too high - it should be 1 or lower or suppressed (no we wont have a heart attack as many doctors believe).

FT4 should be towards upper part of range.

FT3 should also be towards upper part of range but that's not been taken.

This is a link and read SeasideSusie's comments about vits/minerals.


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