Hyperthyroidism/Graves Disease and Weight GAIN - Thyroid UK

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Hyperthyroidism/Graves Disease and Weight GAIN

6 Replies

I was diagnosed with Hyperthyroidism (possibly Graves) in November 2009 with all the classic symptoms bar one. I didn't lose weight - in fact I've steadily put on about 4 stone. I've tried Weight watchers and got fed up with it because I lost 3lb in 6 weeks. I'm trying to exercise, but the aches prevent me from doing to much so I try to walk alot - all be it, very slowly! Does anyone know what I can do to help improve my situation, such as avoiding certain foods or something (already know about avoiding complex carbs) because I am sure that obesity is going to worsen my health.

6 Replies
RedApple profile image

I read somewhere (can't recall where now) that approximately 10% of people with hypERthyroidism do put on weight rather than loose it.

It's likely that you won't be able to get your weight problem under control until your thyroid problem is under control. You don't mention whether you are on thyroid medication?

in reply to RedApple

Hi. I'm on Proplthiouracil 100mg once a day. Originally was 150mg but they dropped me down at my last appointment. Was on Carbamozole but as we're trying to get pregnant, they changed the meds. Last couple of days have been pretty bad and I'm feeling exhausted again, so I suspect they will raise the dosage again when I next see my consultant.

My last full set of results back in April were:

TSH 0.01

FT4 21.60

WCC 6.26

ESR 7.00

Chol 4.40

TC:HDL 3.67

So they appear within normal ranges according to the Normal thyroid results on the bottom of the results letter (except the TSH). Also not sure about the ESR??

Thank you for replying - I also heard that 10% put on weight. My consultant however had never heard of that before when I asked her which depressed me even more when she said that obesity is probably in my genes!!!!

RedApple profile image
RedAppleAdministrator in reply to RedApple

FT4 still looks a little on the high side, although that will be ependent on the actual reference range for you lab (my lab has 19 as the top of the range for FT4). Maybe you would feel better if your FT4 was a bit lower. In your situation, I would be tempted to discuss a dose increase - perhaps to 125mg. That might bring the TSH back into range too.

With respect to the weight issue, I've just posted the following in answer to Shaz:

There is a direct relationship between thyroid hormone levels and carbohydrate metabolism. Many people with thyroid disease find that low carbohydrate diets work well for them. This means completely cutting out foods such as bread, pastry, cakes, cereals, potatoes, pasta, rice and all foods that contain sugar. Your meals would consist of protein in the form of lean meat, fish, cheese etc. together with vegetables and salads.

If you want to learn more about this way of eating, take a look at the Atkins diet website. I'm not advocating the Atkins diet as such, but you might find it helpful to read the info they give about the low carb way of eating.


Shaz profile image

Hi Maxine

Ive just posted a blog asking more or less the same questions as you. I am sure im hypothyroid but not being helped by any of the professionals and am desperatet to lose weight and get fit again. I hope I will get an answer soon and will let you know.

You mention though that complex carbs should be avoided. Are these the obvious such as cheese, pasta etc..?



in reply to Shaz

Hi Shaz

Yes. Anything and everything to do with starch apparently. So ive taken to eating a lot of fruit to try and stop any cravings. So far it is working, but then it's only been a few days since I found this out and have been trying to avoid them. Also try to eat a lot of fibe = hence the fruit!

Hope this helps.



RedApple profile image
RedAppleAdministrator in reply to Shaz

Go easy on the fruit! Yes it's good to have plenty of fibre, but green leafy veggies are a much better source because fruit is very high in sugar.

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