Can I take t3 with food?: I take my first dose of... - Thyroid UK

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Can I take t3 with food?

JBLOVELL profile image

I take my first dose of t3 with my Levothyroxine at 7am and then go back to sleep for an hour. Could I in fact take my t3 with breakfast?

13 Replies
SeasideSusie profile image

Why not continue taking it with your Levo? I can't see any advantages of not doing, and personally I consider all thyroid hormone should be taken on an empty stomach to avoid any chance of absorption being affected.

I don’t take my next dose until 2pm, which I thought may be a little bit too long between doses?

SeasideSusie profile image
SeasideSusieAdministrator in reply to JBLOVELL

Not everyone needs to split doses. I take mine all in one dose early morning with my Levo. Some people take 2 doses - morning and bedtime, some split into 3 doses 8 hours apart. You need to find what suits you best.

It would be simpler to take it with the levothyroxine but I take mine 3 minutes before breakfast. Liothyronine is very well absorbed so I wouldn't expect problems although I've never seen any research into taking liothyronine with food.


I agree with SeasideSusie above. I always take mine on an empty stomach to improve its efficacy, but for the purpose of your question .........

Some say they take their thyroid hormone replacement meds with food. I can only see absorption problems unless one was to start avoiding calcium, iron, fibre, etc. Also, coffee, which has been shown to significantly lower thyroid hormone absorption rates. A lot of bother.

I guess if you were to medicate meds with food you would have to do it consistently and might have to raise dose to allow for malabsorbtion.

I take T3 with food and it doesn't seem to matter. Paul Robinson came to the same conclusion in his book, "Recovering with T3". Have at it, I say 🙂

MaisieGray profile image
MaisieGray in reply to

I agree, many people who follow Paul Robinson's protocol don't worry about food, even though they are mono-T3. There's no research that I've found that says you shouldn't, and in fact one paper that explains why it isn't a problem, but unfortunately I've lost my reference to it. My recollection is that the explanation is that T3 has a far weaker attachment than does T4, but to what, I've unfortunately forgotten! 😂

My consultant Endo says T3 is fine with food as it goes straight into the blood stream to work.

helvella profile image
helvellaAdministrator in reply to HashiFedUp

But if it did interact with food, it simply wouldn't get into the bloodstream.

(More likely, I am sure, it would just be that some of it didn't get into the bloodstream.)

I'm just six months on T3 and experimenting. I take 5 MCG at about 6.30 with levo then take 2.5mcg T3 at about 2.30pm and 2.5mcg at about 6pm. I find I get too much of a high taking it all in one go. I leave about two hours after lunch for the first afternoon dose but if I miss lunch I notice it absorbs quicker and I get a bit of an high. I still get a high about four hours after my morning dose so that's a work in progress. Best advice I got from this site was to see what worked for me and try out different approaches. With T3 acting so quickl you'll soon know if it's not being absorbed.



Dr. Kenneth Blanchard had a different view from convention on the dosing of thyroid meds. Since functioning thyroid glands produce hormones that never come in contact with the walls of the stomach, he surmised that supplemental thyroid hormones shouldn’t either. Of course, with oral medications this is unavoidable.

So to minimize the effects he would instruct patients (myself included), to take their Levo with the evening meal and to take their T3 with breakfast.

CAVEAT #1: If taking Levo with the evening meal adversely affected sleep due to overstimulation, he would instruct patients to take Levo with the morning meal. CAVEAT #2: A few patients may require slightly more Levo due to reduced T4 absorption but he actually found this to be surprisingly uncommon.

I have been taking me Levo and T3 with food since I was diagnosed. I have not experienced the typical weight gain that many HypoT patients lament about.

My advice is to do what works best for you.


helvella profile image
helvellaAdministrator in reply to Ggplusthree

You seem to be very sure of that reply. :-)

You are more certain than I am. Indeed, while I see it as something to be questioned, we have precious little evidence, so far as I know.

Most of the apparent advice on T3 and food seems to be based on what is known about T4 (levothyroxine). That is then assumed to apply to T3. Perhaps it is safer to do so than assume no interaction, but it still seems to be assumption.

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