Thyroid UK
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Hypothyroidism- at the start of my journey.

Hi all, this is my first post, I had my diagnosis just before Xmas and have started on 50mg Levothyroxine, I feel less tired unless I do anything that is in anyway taxing, I'm back in the docs again Tuesday to have my blood tested again and up the dose if necessary.

I'm trying to find out what I can eat, what supplements I should take to try and help myself and really anything I should avoid or look out for and it's a mine field! I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed by all the different information out there!

Does anyone have any pearls of wisdom to share with me to help me start to make the changes I need to make that will help. I'm a vegetarian as well so that seems to confuse matters!!

One worrying thing I have noticed is the condition of my hair! It's suddenly really dry and thin, this has happened since I started the meds, is this normal? Can I counter this with any supplements?

I'm sure this will make more sense to me once the meds are right and the brain fog is improved, does anyone else have that?

Anyway thanks for reading my rambling post and I would appreciate any advise from anyone really!! Thanks again :) xx

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Welcome to our forum and I will link below a list of clinical symptoms and you will see that there is a large number. Of course we don't get all of them but whatever we do get can be disabling and worrying - like hair loss and unexplained weight gain.

thyroiduk.org.uk/tuk/about_...

You take levothyroxine, usually first thing when we get up with one full glass of water and wait an hour before eating. Food interferes with the uptake of the hormones (levo).

We get a blood test every six weeks with an increase of 25mcg of levo until we feel much better, symptoms alleviated and energy returning.

Blood tests have always 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 the test and take afterwards. This help keep the TSH at its highest as it drops throughout the day and may mean an unnecessary lowering of the dose.

Ask GP if you can have a full thyroid function test. The usually do not as they've been told that TSH and T4 are sufficient but we, the patient, know differently.

A FTFT consists of TSH, T4, T3, Free T4, Free T3 and thyroid antibodies. Also ask for B12, Vit D, iron, ferritin and folate as everything has to be optimal - not just somewhere in the range. Doctor should definitely do vitamins/minerals as deficiencies can also cause symptoms.

Always get a print-out for your own records (some charge a nominal sum for paper/ink) and post if you have a query.

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There are no hard and fast rules about what to eat, except that you should avoid unfermented soy (soy flour, soy protein, soy milk, tofu, etc.), processed oil (sunflower seed, rapeseed, etc.), artificial sweeteners and processed foods - because they contain all the other things mentioned.

If you are coeliac, gluten-intolerant or have high antibodies, you should adopt a 100% gluten-free diet.

Apart from that, just eat whatever you like and agrees with you. There are no superfoods, though.

As for supplements, avoid multi-vits, as they're a waste of money. Get tested for vit D, vit B12, folate and ferritin, and supplement according to results, adding in cofactors where necessary (people on here can help with that). Some things you can take without testing :

vit C (good for everything, and helps with absorption of most things)

magnesium (good for cramps and constipation, and helps with sleep if taken at night)

selenium (lowers antibodies, if you have them, and helps with conversion)

zinc (good for aching muscles)

If levo is causing your hair-loss, try taking Evening Primrose Oil and Borage Oil. :)

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I started 25mcg Synthroid in December after having right side thyroid removed due to thyroid cancer in October 2017. My doctor prescribed lowest dose of Armour for me in initially but after first day of usage (December 9, 2017) I ended up in hospital for 3 days with afib—severe heart palpitations and high heart rate. Doctor therefore started me on low dose of Synthroid 25mcg in December 18th. Only been on it for 4 weeks but my hair has thinned significantly. Scheduled for blood work next week. I am really depressed and really scared. Can’t imagine what my hair will look like in a few more weeks. My hair was starting to thin after my surgery but now incredibly thin since Synthroid usage. Really shocking and unbelievable, my thick hair is gone.

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Hair goes through 3 phases, anagen (growth phase), catagen (end of growth phase) which lasts about 2 to 3 weeks and telogen (resting phase) and then it falls out. The catagen and telogen phases together can equate to 3 or more months. So the hairs that have fallen out since you started medication were already going to fall out. It has taken 1 1/2 years for my hair to thicken and for the wirey, coarse hair to be cut off (I have shoulder length hair). My hair loss started slowing down 2 months after I started medication. So don't worry it will stop and you hair will become nice and thick again.

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When I comb my hair the fallout is moderate (more than before and long strains with bulbs) but not globs of hair as some describe. Certainly not enough to justify the very thin hair that I now have. It is as if the hair is melting off my head and thinning before my very eyes. Was this your hair experience or did you lose enormous amounts during daily combing. Thank you.

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BTW, what medication do you take

Kalicoat?

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I take synthroid only. I just noticed more hair loss when washing and drying my hair and random hairs dropping off around the house, it did not come out in clumps. My hair got very thin, was all different lengths so looked shaggy, was coarse and wirey, not soft. It looked horrible. I bought a wig because it was that noticeable. I also recede in the front and am thinner on the top for other reasons so when I go through hair loss it becomes very noticeable.

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Thank you Kalicoat. I too, am thinking of buying a wig because my hair now looks horrible! Do you still have your thyroid, half of mine has been removed (thyca).

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Yes I still have my thyroid. I have hashimotos.

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