Does anyone know about reducing antibody levels in hashimotos?

I have recently been diagnosed with Hashimotos with a TP antibodies reading of 413 (range normal is <49 according to doctor). Free T4 11.1; TSH 7.28 (I haven't had any other tests done for T3 or vitamin levels)

My doctor said the only treatment is Levothyroxine (which I began last week and seems to be making me feel worse so far) but I understand this only replaces the thryoid hormone - does it also address the antibody level. I don't have a sense if 413 is a high reading or not, it seems it to me but I might just be imagining it due to feeling so rubbish at the moment.

I wondered if anyone had any experience or knew of resources about reducing the level of antibodies. It just can't be a good thing having the immune system attacking the thyroid even if you can relieve the symptoms surely its still doing damage and must be contributing to the general feeling of unwellness. Does it even help with symptoms to reduce the antibodies?

I did find some american stuff about selenium reducing antibodies ( ; and do try an eat an extra brazil nut or too but does anyone have any more scientific or personal knowledge/experience they could share?

I know its early days in my treatment and am not expecting levothyroxine (or brazil nuts!) to be a miracle cure (though secretly hoping :) but any extra ideas on sorting out the source of the problem as well as the symptoms would be great.

Thank you so much, this site and all you generous people has already been a great help in even getting this far. My GP didn't give me any information and it took a year and a serious deterioration in health before I had the antibodies test - surely it should be standard in any thyroid-related investigation?

25 Replies

  • Supposedly, once your thyroid totally loses its function, the antibodies reduce, ie once they have totally destroyed your thyroid and you are relying purely on meds to produce the hormones, there is nothing left for them to attack, so they reduce.

    I myself found that one kind of antibody - i forget which - because there are 2 thyroid antibodies, reduced from about 400 on 1 test to about 200 on a test 6 months later after i started taking selenium

  • Thanks, that seems quite a big reduction. I think Selenium definitely worth a try. I don't know which antibodies test I had either. I'm learning the right questions to ask.

  • After how long you took selenium it reduced ?

  • Hi Yeaars ago, treatment was just o , how one was , TSh, T4 and Free T3. I have hashimotos, when origninally treated it was just called Hypo, so I never had the antibody test. If treated correctly ie T4 and if proved needed, T3, then the treatment should work. It is done slowly with frequent tests until stable, as powerful drugs. make sure you have the other tests too. If seeing an endo they will do them all, B12 and Folic acid, iron/ferritin vit D ( if low, corrected calcium before treatment, retest 3 months)most important glucose and if possible Hb1Ac too ( both diabetes,similar symptoms to thyroid disease)Look out for other autoimmune diseases, gradually, I have about 12 now.

    Best wishes,


  • Thanks, i do think I should see an endo don't have much faith in my doctor and haven't had any vitamins levels tested. And interesting re other auto-immune diseases, my dad has diabetes and my mum has MS (although I now suspect she has undiagnosed Hashimotos) and my sister has reynauds, all could be linked. Maybe they should all get their thyroids tested now!!

  • Hi Reynauds also autoimmune, I have it. Vit D most important as not really a vit at all, hormonal Louise has a lists of NHS and also private endo`s, recommended, although I think my private endo is the only one on the list! Do not make the mistake ,I did of seeing a private doctor, thyroid specialist, not a consultant. They did not do any of the vital tests etc and gP will not normally prescribe on their recommendation. Also likely eventually to have enlarged thyroid and nodules, then biopsies, would not be possible without an endo. or good GP I am only going by my own experiences and what my other .consultants , in other fields ,have told me.Some people would not agree with me. for list.


  • I am of the same mind as you when it comes to these antibodies. It feels really alien to me to be told to let the antibodies destroy my thyroid and then I'll just be a regular hypothyroid case rather than a Hashimoto's case. But we seem to be a minority view. I was diagnosed just over 2 years ago and initially I was just glad to get the diagnosis after several years of illness, and to begin to feel a bit better once my levothyroxine dose was optimal. But then I started looking for information about the antibodies and found very little, nothing in the UK. But I have found a Doctor who seems to know what he's talking about on the internet. This is Dr Alexander Haskell and his website is Hope for Hashimoto's - where there is a series of presentations which I found very helpful in understanding the condition. I then bought his book, which I also value. He outlines a process in the book which he believes will reduce and then eliminate the antibodes. He also believes you can then "restart" your own thyroid. I don't know how much of this is possible, but last year thinking there was nothing to lose I started to follow his plan - and when I had a private test for antobodies in February there was a slight fall for the first time, after 2 years of them climbing. I'm not advocating this or saying it works, but something is happening for me and I feel better now than I've felt for several years. The thing I like and feel confidence in is that he insists his plan must go alongside conventional medicine and taking levothyroxine is an essential part of this. So this is not some quack trying to sell you supplements - you'e probably already seen there are lots of them out there. I hope you start to feel better soon - but remember it can take some time for your cells to repair, so hang on. Please do get in touch if you want to know more,

  • Thanks, I will certainly look this up and get in touch if I have any more questions. I feel better being proactive but am also being careful not to follow everything I read so a recommendation like this is useful.

  • plz i want to lower my anti tpo could you help

  • My Tpoab antibodies were 658 (range<6) when measured 2 years ago. Don't think they'll be measured again as they seem to just be used to give an indication of how my condition, and treatment might progress. Also I think if treatment with T4 and/or T3 is successful, this should reduce the number of antibodies. My TSH is being kept very suppressed (<0.02) and I believe this is because of the level of antibodies found. As long as your treatment helps (and this might take a wee while), perhaps you shouldn't get too hung up on the antibodies test. Good luck!

  • Yes, I have read a bit more and think the thyroid replacement will help with antibodies. And yes you're right not to get too obsessed with one element of it! Thank you

  • Hi Chicken3, I agree that it doesn't make sense that many endocrinologists and doctors aren't interested in trying to stop the antibodies attacking the thyroid. I wrote this as a reply to someone else:

    TPO: 138.500 (1.5.12); 178,500 (16.6.12); 256.000 (13.9.12); 961.87 (25.11.12) and 486.62 (5.3.13). Anti-TG 498.6 (17.6.12) and has gone down to 51.57 (5.3.13). The anti-bodies seem to fluctuate. Why? I had liquorice tea and sweets (July to Sept.'12) in the hope it would make my adrenals healthy, therefore helping the conversion of T4 to T3 but later read it's not good for Hashimoto's. There's so much conflicting and out of date information on the internet that I probably did the wrong thing which may have caused the antibodies to rise from 256 to 961. I stopped the liquorice and also gave up dairy then my antibodies went down to 486.

    My TPO antibodies rose after I started to take Levothyroxine 25mg (28.6.12) but my Anti-TG decreased. I think I read that the antibodies an still attack other parts of your body that like iodine. For example your thyroid likes iodine and other organs apart from the thyroid like iodine too... You might find this article interesting:

    I also wrote this as a reply to someone else:

    I truly think the health authorities should test for thyroid antibodies more often and research how to cure it not just treat but CURE it. In the same way that they screen for cancer of the cervix because if you catch it early it's easier to treat and cure. It could save them a lot of money in the long run. Cure the disease: less people need treatment for the hundreds of symptoms caused by thyroid problems (often caused by disease - but not always I know).

    Best of luck. If you find the answer please share xxx :)

  • This is really interesting, I have been having liqorice tea everyday for last two months to help the thyroid thing... its so hard to know what is causing what effect... was thinking of stopping anyway because feel unsure about effect of some of these strong herbs. That's why other's experiences so useful.

  • I recommend a book called Thyroid Balance by Dr Glenn Rothfeld available on amazon or the Rothfeld Center for Integrative Medicine in Waltham Massachusetts. My child has Hashimoto's and her antibodies have reduced from well over 2000 to 200 and from 388 to 34 within a few months under his care. Her thyroid was not destroyed by the antibodies so this is not the reason for the reduction. Good luck and I hope you feel better soon. You may want to try natural hormone or dessicated if the synthetic doesn't reduce symptoms.

  • I can share my personal experience. After being diagnosed by my general practitioner, it was recommended that I go on the synthroid, and just wait until my thyroid gland was destroyed and hope for the best. I then went to my naturopathic doctor, and he started a treatment with a few targeted supplements, and I cut out all gluten from my diet. I have since gotten a blood test every quarter, and these are my current results. TSH started at 5.5, but is now 4.4. Thyroid Peroxidase Auto Antibodies started at 453, and is now at 98. Thyroglobulin Auto Antibodies started at 27.9 and is now at 2.2. I suspect within the next couple of blood tests, it will be completely clinically undetectable. My vitamin D was also low when I first started out, which is pretty common with Hashimoto's. That started at 17, and I've not gotten that up to 51.4. I'd be happy to share more about my naturopathic doctor and the specific treatment. Just message me directly.

  • thanks for your reply. this sounds very interesting- did you take the synthroid as well or just follow naturopath? I have been on levothyroxine for 10 months and take vit d and vit c supplements and feel good but have no idea level of antibody as gp won't retest. I did try gluten free for 3 months last year but not sure it made a difference. not sure I was strict enough though! any further advice you have would be welcome. I do feel good at the moment but it goes in cycles and I'm not being cured just suppressing symptoms which is not ideal.

  • I have never taken synthroid or Armour. I didn't want to start tinkering with my endocrine system that heavily, and took a more holistic approach. I take the following supplements, but I would not recommend that anyone do the same without first talking to your naturopath.

  • Also, I order my own lab test through, but I don't know if you have something like that in the U.K.

  • BroadUSC - I have heard good things about the first product. The second 2 links do not work. Can you please share the name of the products? Thank you!!

  • Id love to hear rmore I have hashi's also

  • Hi - yes please I'd be really interested in your doctors details, I have hashis and high anti bodies too, thanks

  • Hello ,Broadusc,I am suffering from hashimotos with Anti TPO >1300.My TSH levels are normal.Could you please suggest me the naturopathic doctor.I am struggling with lot of symptoms in my body.Would be very thankfull if you can help me ont his.Thanks!

  • Hi dear friend, thank you for your kind offer to help. Please please, I need your advice and help. My last test shows very high antibody level and I take 200mg of levotiroxin. Feel not well. Here my test results

    Antithyroid Thyroglobulin Antibody .... Result 182.00 IU/ml Normal values less than 40 IU/ml

    Antithyroid Peroxidase 54.30 IU/ml .................. 35IU/ml

    Iron 40.2 ........60.0 - 180.0

    Free Triiodothyronine FT3 0.89 - 1.76

    3rd generation T.S.H. 3.969 04. - 4.0


  • Hi There!

    First thing with Hashimoto's is to cut out gluten entirely.Gluten looks just like thyroid hormone to your immune system. Every time you eat it your body will go into flare mode. Basically, gluten causes your body to attack your thyroid even more. The best diet for Hashi's is paleo. You will feel much better and the antibodies will go down just from doing that. The second thing is taking the correct meds and supplements. Levothyroxine is a synthetic T4 only drug. Your body can only use 1/4 of what they are giving you since it is synthetic. Plus if you are having any sort of conversion issues you will not be using it properly. You are clearly hypothyroid from your TSH and T4. You should take NDT, or naturally dessicated thyroid hormone. If you cannot find a doc to prescribe it for you Thyro-gold is an excellent product. I used it for awhile, until I could find a good doc who understands hashi's. NDT is either pig or cow thyroid. It may sound gross, but it is the only true thyroid replacement therapy. Your body can use it properly because it is an organic substance. It has all the thyroid hormones you need in it. T4, T3, T2, T1, and Calcitonin. You will feel such a difference if you can get on that. You should read Dr. Brownstein's books on thyroid, iodine, and gluten-free diet. Another great book and resource is Stop The Thyroid Madness. There is a website with tons of information, and they have several FB groups you can join. They have helped me so much. The facebook groups are Hashimoto's 411, FTPO thyroid topics, FTPO gluten and gut health. I can't remember the names of the others, but when you join one the others will be on that little side thingy that advertises things. Or you can ask the people on the group what others you should join. There is another one that I have learned so much from, the Iodine Workship. Research iodine and Hashi's. You will learn that you shouldn't take selenium without iodine or vice versa. Iodine can help shrink goitre and lower antibodies. Dr. Brownstein says he thinks iodine deficiency causes hashi's. I don't know what caused mine, but adding iodine, selenium, and other companion nutrients to my diet have helped shrink my goitre and lessened my symptoms. Good luck! You have to be a researcher and a student of thyroid issues when you have something like Hashi's. You will find lots of doctors are ignorant about it. It is an autoimmune disease, so you have to treat the root cause to get any true relief.

  • My TPA was 1179 five months ago and after five months of increased levothyroxin dosages it has only dropped to 1062. If you learn anything about how to lower the antibodies I would love to know.

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