Are you switching to Nature-throid? Here’s 10 good things to know!

Screen Shot 2015-09-27 at 1.33.08 PM(This page has been updated to the current day and time. Enjoy!)

In 2009, there were many folks reporting problems with the newly-formulated Armour (and that has been true for 2015, sadly), just as there was a growing body of individuals stating they are switching to Naturethroid by RLC Labs (formerly Western Research), another prescription brand of desiccated thyroid which also makes WP Thyroid.  

Today, there are even more quality brands to consider. And when a brand like Armour disappoints, many are also switching to NP Thyroid by Acella.

But if you are considering Naturethroid, here is info to carry with you if you switch:

  1. Naturethroid has a coating on the outside, and some patients state they bite on the pill to remove the coating, and still try to do it sublingually. No sugar, but some are determined.
  2. One grain of Naturethroid is 65 mg rather than the 60 mg that Armour users have been used to. Two grains are 130 mgs, etc. (One grain is actually 64.8 but it’s easier to round it up). Strengths are 1/4, 1/2, one grain, two grains, three grains.
  3. The makers of Naturethroid started making 1 1/2 grain tablets by 2010.
  4. Ingredients are
    • Porcine Thyroid Powder, U.S. Pharmacopeia
    • Microcrystalline Cellulose
    • Dicalcium Phosphate
    • Sodium Starch Glycolate
    • Magnesium Stearate
    • Hydroxypropyl Methylcellulose
    • Stearic Acid
    • Carnauba Wax
    • Polyethylene Glycol
  5. Naturethroid uses the same USP thyroid powder as any good desiccated thyroid product—it “adheres to full pharmaceutical purity and standardization on the consistency of the hormones along with full pre-and-post testing procedures associated with quality prescription products.”
  6. RLC Labs is a small and friendly pharmaceutical company.
  7. Twitter has a Nature Throid website.
  8. RLC labs also used to distribute Westhroid more than it does today (simlar), but that has largely been replaced by WP Thyroid–an NDT with very few fillers.
  9. When switching, you will have to figure out if you need to be on a similar amount as before, or a different amount, according to symptoms.
  10. And finally, it’s been around since the 1930’s–another tried and true desiccated thyroid product!

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477 Responses to “Are you switching to Nature-throid? Here’s 10 good things to know!”

  1. Kathy

    I’ve been self dosing for years on westhroid because doc had no clue, now on 4gr, finally found a doc who has extended thyroid knowledge. He switched me to nature-throid, stating that others had better results on this compared to being on westhroid. I just picked up my Rx and it looks like the same pill that I was taking, only it’s 1 1/2 grain and my new dose is 1 pill every day. Is there any difference between the two? I read that they are identical. It’s making me question this docs knowledge, but he still doses by symptoms and not TSH, so that makes me hopeful. I’m worried because every time I tried to reduce my dose because of TSH, once I reach 3.5 gr, I get pain in my shoulder and back, 3 gr and I feel like an old person with joint pain and I actually start limping. Do you know of anyone switching between the two for better results? Thank you so much for all the valuable information you provide all of us. You are truely a blessing from God!

    Reply
    • Janie Bowthorpe

      I have not seen better results with Naturethroid Vs Westhroid. They are, in fact, almost virtually identical and the makers admit that.

      Reply
  2. Jackie

    My endocrist’s PA has agreed, at my request, to switch me from 112mcg Synthroid to Naturethroid. She said to just start on 90mg, saying it was roughly equivalent to the 112mcg Synthroid dosage. I asked if I should “wean” myself off the Synthroid, and she said no, just to start the Naturethroid. When I asked if I should multi-dose to prevent stressing on my adrenals, she didn’t think it was necessary. I suggested (after reading STTM) that I would feel more comfortable starting with 1/2 grain (32.5 mg) of Naturthroid in the morning and 1/2 in the afternoon for a 2-week period, then increasing to another 1/2 grain after 2 weeks, for a total of 90mg, if I tolerated it well. She said I could do whatever I want! Can you advise as to the best way to transition? Also, 3 years ago another doctor put me on 112mcg Levothyroxine with 5mg of Cytomel added twice a day. I experienced significant hair loss for 3 months and asked to discontinue, also because I didn’t feel any better. Who needs to feel lousy and go bald at the same time! At this point, I have more faith in the research and facts you have presented in STTM than I do in the medical professionals I have seen thus far. Thank you for any help you can provide!

    Reply
    • Janie Bowthorpe

      Congratulations on the switch! Yes, most of us just take T4 one last day, then start on NDT alone the next and never look at T4-only again. NDT is 80% T4 anyway! By the way, there’s a very strong possibility that 90 mg (1 1/2 grains) won’t be enough and you’ll need to raise in search of your individual optimal dose. Mine, for example, is 3 1/2 grains, but everyone is different as to what is optimal. All explained here: http://www.stopthethyroidmadness.com/natural-thyroid-101

      Reply
  3. Betty Campbell

    On Naturethroid 97.5 mg. x6 mon. (was on Armour 90mg) Now FT3 4.69, FT4 0.68, TSH 0.721. This was 3 hours after dosing. Am sleepy, very cold, very hoarse when I talk, feels like a large lump in my throat. My Endo. said ” I dont know”. Is it time to increase dose ?

    Reply
  4. Jackie

    Hi Janie. I made the switch from 112mg Synthroid to 60 mg Naturethroid 3 weeks ago. One week later, I increased my dosage to 90mg, and was planning to increase again to 120mg today (one week later). I had been feeling markedly better, BUT a couple of days ago, noticed the headache and foggy brain symptoms of hypo came back somewhat, and my hypo weight gain (only 5-6 pounds) is still there, despite being gluten free for a month, and eating basically “clean.” Yesterday morning, I decided to whip myself back into shape with an 8:30 zumba class. I had taken my morning 60mg Naturethroid at 6:30, so I knew I’d probably feel the T3 “peak” at some point during class. Wow!!! Half-way through, I felt my heart rate was really elevated moreso than usual, and I felt hyper-like symtoms of neck and shoulder tension. OK, maybe not a good idea to jump back into zumba, since I hadn’t done it or any other heavy-duty cardio in probably a year. This morning, my hip and knee joints are really feeling it, so I decided to just do some lightweight resistance bands for bicep/tricep strength. Same thing all over again. That was 5 hours after taking my morning 60mg, and I’m still feeling hyper shaky. Like I said, I was planning on increasing my dosage from 90mg total to 120mg today, but I’m not so sure what’s going on here. Can you enlighten me please?

    Reply
  5. Joi

    Janie, I do have an Rx for Nature Throid at my pharmacy right now. I have a different ? though. I have a 4-point Cortisol Saliva test from Quest Diagnostics and have heard that that test from them isn’t good. Why? What’s wrong with that lab? I’m supposed to be doing the test this wednesday. I hope to hear from you before then. Thank-you

    Reply
  6. Martha Barnhart

    The dr increased my levothyroxin from 50mcg to 75mcg back in Dec. I am asking him to put me on Naturethroid. I feel fatigued, really tired, muscle and joint pain in my legs and arms, depressed with no energy. I have been on Synthroid 50mcg for two years until Dec 2015 then switch to generic brand levothyroxin. Not helping. I also was recently diagnosed with high risk for fractures with osteoporosis in my spine -3.5 with some disk degeneration L4-5 and I was deficient in vit D and B12. The labs for those are fine now. Q:what dose should my dr start me on for the Naturethroid? Does anything else stand out to you concerning my condition? I just turned 62. Thank you very much.

    Reply
  7. Martha Hancock

    I am on Armour, 3 grains, and am optimal. I feel really good! I do have a little itching with it. I want to switch to another ndt, because my last refill went up in price again. I am gluten and lactose intolerant. I have read the information on what is in Naturethroid, but it says it is a traceable amount as part of desiccated thyroid powder, which makes me think all ndt’s contain it? Are you aware of anyone else who is lactose intolerant who reacts to this ingredient? I did read that it is gluten free. I am feeling so good, I don’t want to switch and start having belly problems. Is there a particular ndt that you would recommend for someone like me? Thanks!

    Reply
    • Angela

      If you can get naturethroid, go to CVS and ask them about card to cover cost, I pay $24 for my morning dose 113.75 and $20 for my afternoon dose 97.5

      Reply
      • Debi

        COSTCO has the cheapest I have found. No membership required to use their pharmacy. My 97.5 mg NT was $18 for 90day supply ($6 a month).

        Reply
        • Tee Sharkey

          Costco and Sam’s Club charge the same price. You do not need to be a member of either to get medication from them. I get mine from Sam’s club since the process is quicker than Costco.

          Reply
    • Janey Cain

      Marsha, I was severely lactose intolerant for the past seven + years. I started on Nature-throid and within 6 weeks I was able to eat cheese on a hamburger. I didn’t realize it at the time, but it registered later………….so I bought myself some ice cream. Really shocked to find out that the stomach pains, gas and bloating from lactose products was gone.
      Enjoyed many ice cream cones with the grandchildren on vacation. Thanks to Nature-throid for being (lactose intolerance) symptom free.

      Reply
  8. Marsha

    Can you please expound onthjs a bit more so I understand better. I feel perhaps I am at this point. Thank you. But patients who want to start lower learned to keep going up, bit by bit, to counter the feedback loop suppression. i.e. those lower doses have made some patients feel even worse if they stay on them too long.

    Reply
    • Janie Bowthorpe

      There is a system in your body called the hypothalamic-pituitary axis…or the feedback loop. It’s a messaging system from the hypothalamus (tiny gland in your brain area), to the pituitary (another tiny gland in your brain area), to the thyroid…and back again. It’s all why your thyroid releases thyroid hormones in the first place. It’s “told to do so” by this feedback loop.

      When we start on thyroid meds, the little gland in the brain called the hypothalamus senses it, though it doesn’t realize it’s coming from YOU giving it to yourself. Instead, the hypothalamus thinks it’s your own thyroid doing it! So, the hypothalamus stops telling the pituitary to stop messaging your thyroid to produce! So now, your own body makes even LESS thyroid hormone release on top of a very low starting dose of thyroid meds…and we can feel worse. Thus the importance of raising of thyroid meds pretty systematically and not too slowly.

      Reply
      • Cynthia Martin

        What about when you don’t have a thyroid. What does the brain tell you?
        Had mine removed 11 years ago.

        Reply
  9. M.J.

    This is such a wonderful website– thank you for providing all the information and for answering questions. I am going to order the book! I have a question about switching from Armour to Nature Throid. I was diagnosed with Hashi’s in 2010 with a TSH of 4.61 and TPO antibodies of 187. I have been on Armour since then. Started at 30 mg, then 60, and have been on 75 mg for the past 2 years. My T4 and T3 have stayed on the low end of “normal” range over the past 6 years but my TSH bounces around — each time the Armour was increased it dropped below 1.0 but then would “rebound” back up to high 2’s. At my last blood test in March it was 3.85 and my doctor agreed to switch to Nature-Throid and raise it to 113 to see if that will help my symptoms — weight gain, fatigue, increased LDL out of the blue, etc. Plus my TPO antibodies have been over 2500 for past 3 years.
    Is it OK to increase the dose from by a 1/2 grain, or should I ask for a 1/4 grain increase right now. Many thanks-

    Reply
  10. Susan

    After 25vyears on Synthroid and never feeling great, I found a doctor that switched me to Naturethroid 4 weeks ago. I was on
    .125 Synthroid and he started me on 3/4 Grain (48.75) two tomes a day. After 3 weeks I was still fatigued, so he doubled my dose. The first two days I was ok, but the third day I ended up in the ER with severe palpitations and HBP. I don’t want to give up on the Naturethroid, I think he was just too aggressive with the increase? What is the average dose increase for Naturethroid?

    Reply
  11. Sherri

    Does anyone “break out” from naturethroid? I’m on 130 MG and I break out on my face, neck and arms “I guess adult acne”. I never had acne very bad until now and I’m 46

    Reply
    • Janie Bowthorpe

      Sherri, two possibilities to explore: 1) Naturethroid may be helping you to detox, thus the pimples. 2) You may be allergic to a filler? Here’s a page which shows ingredients/fillers to explore: http://www.stopthethyroidmadness.com/armour-vs-other-brands

      Reply
    • Vicki

      sherri
      I started nature thyroid and have the same issue but I also started itching very badly all over. I’ve tried all the other thyroid meds, not sure what my direction will be now. My dr thinks I’m allergic to a filler. I’ve never felt better physically but the itchy burning skin has got to go !

      Reply
  12. Sharon

    Hello. I have hashimotos. T3 and T4 numbers are optimal. My antibodies number was over 860. Tried synthroid and levothyroxine but felt horrible; headache, nausea, fatigue. I think the fillers did not agree with me. Will Nature Throid help people with high antibodies?

    Reply
  13. N L

    I started on Armour lowest dose, and I have some good results, feeling much better and sleeping longer, and if I wake up after the old 4-5 l/2 hours, I can go back to sleep.

    But my physical energy is gone in 3-5 hours, although I feel ok & have mental energy until around 5 to 7pm, when I feel totally drained, and not good.

    My question is this: I have been swallowing my Armour Thyroid pills & waiting l/2 hour to eat/drink anything but water. But on this page it was mentioned that someone taking NatureThroid takes it sublingually. Was I supposed to take it sublingually? My doc did not tell me, if so. Could that be why I lose the good effect for the afternoon/evening?

    Also, I have switched to NatureThroid but just got the prescription, same dose as Armour, and need to know if I am supposed to take it sublingually.

    Thanks.

    Reply
    • Janie Bowthorpe

      Hi. We all have to raise to find our optimal dose, and whether sublingually or swallowed, it really doesn’t matter, we have found. Check out this page to see how patients have successfully used NDT: http://www.stopthethyroidmadness.com/natural-thyroid-101 🙂

      Reply
    • Kathy T.

      I cut my NT (84.25 mg) in two so that it will dissolve. In my system successfully. I also can take half in the morning and half in afternoon.

      I personally am at the point that I believe I have to be raise up and increase the mg’s of my current prescription because of a list of side effects that has increased for 6 months, with the change to NT from Armour last December (doctor’s suggestion). My hair loss & thinning is getting worse, which is really depressing. I have also had the acne on my face and chest, early on, at the time that my stress level was extremely high. The loss of my eye brows has always been a problem. The depression, anxiety, irritability and NOW weight gain is a true bummer. I’m “chilly” off and on and have learned to deal with it. I now take longer to recover when I am physically active in my sport. My vision seems to be less sharp. I thought this NT was going to be a better choice, All this creates a huge cloud over my happiness.

      Also looking for another knowledgeable Doctor who will work with me without a huge $$$ office visit each time I have to increase or check back in with her. The “upside” of all this is that I am taking the time to dive in and read all I can find about this condition of Hypothyroidism and I have found this wonderful website: STTM and book. Thank you

      Reply
      • Janie Bowthorpe

        You get an A+, Kathy. Because the way to get put of this mess is learn from the wisdom of patients before you who have gotten out of it….which the STTM book and website are about! And yes, you are probably seriously underdosing yourself if your total daily amount is only 84.25 mg. Our optimal amounts are different, but just for comparison only, my optimal amount is 210 mg or 3 1/2 grains (a different brand than Naturethroid). Some are slightly less when optimal; some are more.

        Reply
  14. Julia Gurr

    Hello, I was on 100mcg of Levo for hashimotos for 21 years. Never felt well and put on loads of different meds for symptoms
    Changed to 50mcg Levo and 10mcg T3 six or so months back
    Initially better bit then not so good again. Endo said up Levo to 75 but each time I try that I feel hyper. Don’t seem to get on with Levo
    I started nature-throid about 2 weeks ago (self bought). Stopped Levo and started 1/2 grain nt + 10mcg T3 early morning, then half grain of nt in late afternoon. Raised to one grain nt + 10mcg early morning then 1/4 grain of nt late afternoon. Sincestarting fatigue been better but have severe back of neck and shoulder pain. V short tempered too??

    Reply
  15. Erin

    I have tried most all the thyroid meds over the last 5 years including armour and none have ever stabilized my numbers. I stopped taking all thyroid meds on February 22(2 1/2 months ago) so the doctor could do a clean set of labs with all meds out of my system. I had hoped so much that my labs would come back perfect and my hypothyroidism had magically disappeared. Of course that didn’t happen and my lab work showed I still have hypothyroidism and also my ferritin level is low. I asked my doctor about nature throid and he said let’s give it a try. I just took it for the first time and am feeling a little nervous. I have no idea what to expect from it. He prescribed me 195mg a day and I am hoping it works! Any info or advice would be greatly appreciated. Sick and tired of feeling sick and tired:(!

    Reply
  16. Nicole

    Hey all! I’ve been on naturethroid for years, and have had good results with it. Even still, I’m still raising and am up to SIX grains as of January 2016. Bloodwork is showing that I still have antibodies in the high 80s, thyroid hormones are in the low normal ranges, but dr wants to see them closer to high normal. Bloodwork also showing high inflammation via crp and sed rate tests. I went gluten free in Janiary to hopefully address the inflammation, but recent bloodwork shows it’s actually increased. I’m seeing my dr tomorrow, but am feeling stumped and wondering why I have to keep increasing. I’ve not met anyone who was on such a high dose, and while I’m okay with raising based on symptoms, it just seems really high to me! Does anyone have any insight as to what might be going on? My primary thyroid symptoms like sleepiness, dry skin, etc are long gone, though I still have other unexplained symptoms that may or may not be linked to my hashis.

    Reply
    • Janie Bowthorpe

      Nicole, that usually happens when someone has Thyroid Hormone Resistance, i.e a mutation in the R383H gene. I see it more in Europeans especially, but it can happen anywhere. It just means that a person with this mutation has to go quite high to get their levels where they are optimal. I’ve seen some as high as 8 grains, 10 grains, even 12 grains!! Or some start adding in T3-only to those high doses of NDT, too. As far as the inflammation, it may go down as you go much higher with the Naturethroid to get your levels up, especially since you removed all gluten.

      Reply
      • Nicole

        Thank you for your quick and personalized response, Janie! I was wondering if you have any links that might explain this mutation/thyroid hormone resistance in laymens terms? The information I was able to find said that those with thyroid hormone resistance should show numbers in the normal range even before medication. Wondering if it’s a different thing altogether?

        Reply
        • Janie Bowthorpe

          Remember that “being in the normal range” means nothing, we’ve discovered repeatedly. It’s more about where a result falls that has meaning, based on years of observations of each other’s labwork. Yes, it could be something else. Always a possibility> But when we see someone like you being that high yet having results lower in the range, it does always seem to point in the direction of that mutation. You could do genetic testing and find out one way or the other….:)

          Reply
    • Lori

      Try maybe a liver detox.

      Reply
  17. Gina

    HI. I live in Spain and have been on synthetic thyroid 100mg for about 40 years after being diagnosed for an overactive thyroid and being given radioactive iodine. A little over a month ago I just stopped taking it, one thing I noticed is that my hair stopped falling out and my face is not getting bloated. I have been looking for a doctor who will prescribe NDT but according to people I’ve spoken to, it is highly unlikely I find a doctor here who will do so. I’ve come across a site in US where I can buy Nature Throid on-line but I will have to wait until at least late June to get it. So now I’m thinking of going back on synthroid until then. What do you think? I feel fine but worried that I’m not taking anything, I never felt bad but losing my hair really stressed me out.

    Reply
    • Janie Bowthorpe

      You know, we can never know. But is it possible that “some” of your thyroid still exists and is working for you? I would personally do labs i.e. free T3 and free T4 and see what’s up first…but it’s up to you.

      Reply
  18. Tim

    I was switched from Levothyroxine to Tirosint last July and then I had my thyroid removed on 2/16/2016. I had been on Levo for 9 years. This morning I started on Nature-Throid 65MCG which I hope will help me join humanity again. I am also about to fire my second endocrinologist after she told me NDTs are made from leftover parts from both cows and pigs. What the what? I know what it is made from so I just brushed it off because she was finally going to prescribe it to me. She also once told me that testing for free T3 was voodoo but she still included in the blood test. I am going back to my PCP for my thyroid monitoring because he listens and will work with me. Thank you for the information on this site. It has helped me quite a bit when it comes to trying to locate the right med and searching out doctors that truly know what I am going through.

    Reply
  19. karen

    not sure how to say this because it is embarrassing but I just started on Nature Throid last month. I take it in the morning while still in bed…within 15 minutes I have very runny diarrhea…has anyone experienced this? it’s just one time each morning and then done.

    Reply
    • Deja

      Hi karen, I often experienced “unexplained” diarrhea while I was taking ndt a decade ago. I’m not certain why it happened. At the time I wasn’t aware of how to read lab reports properly but my suspicion is that I may have been taking too high a dose. On the other hand I read on ERFA brand’s website (in red font) that dessicated thyroid can cause diarrhea in some people, full stop! That warning, though, has since disappeared from their site. Anyhow, I quit NDT but after not doing so great on synthroid and only somewhat better on synthroid plus T3 I’m ready to try ndt again, only this time I’ll be able to read my labs plus be more aware of other symptoms like heart-rate, temperature, blood-pressure, and bowel frequency, etc.

      Reply
      • karen

        Thank you Deja. I appreciate your reply. I actually just went to my doc and being on NatureThroid for the last 6 weeks has resulted in my TSH going from 1.32 to 4.33! In the past, this would have resulted in a lot of other symptoms and plain disaster for me BUT this last month, despite the diarrhea, I have FINALLY been able to lose some weight, not much but at least something after a year of continual weight gain despite trying everything. I am also not in the fog I was in on Armour. My doc increased my 97.5 dose to 113.5 dose to combat the high TSH. I told her about the diarrhea, she didn’t seem concerned. I’m not sure she is the best endocrinologist for me but I am liking the NatureThroid. After a horrible year following thyroidectomy (2nd procedure, now have no thyroid), I am willing to accept the diarrhea if it means no brain fog and weight loss.

        Reply
  20. Miralys

    Hello, someone at the thyca website recomended NDT from RLC labs, I was checking and look like is glutten free, I will definitely ask my doctor for that one whenever I’m ready to switch. Also another person who is a thyroid cancer survivor recomended to stop my Levo for at least a week before I started with the NDT, I can’t wait., with the levothyroxine 75 I feel bloated and I have gain 40 pounds since my TT, hoping NDT help.

    Reply
  21. Jan Erik

    I lowered my NT dose 3 weeks ago since lab an body tells me I overdosed. I went down from 135 to 120. I feel Im not stabilized on the new dose but got symptoms of fatigue, dizziness,and hangover one day and feel better the next. When can I expect to feel steady better? I have a small rest production after RAI in 2012. My Iron ,B12 and Cortisol are top notch

    Reply
    • Janie Bowthorpe

      Hi Jan. There’s no way for us to know for any individual. But the extra T3 should be out of your body within a week. It takes longer for conversion of T4 to T3 to lower itself. Otherwise, I would make sure that you aren’t also seeing symptoms of having a cortisol issue. Do the Discovery Steps here: http://www.stopthethyroidmadness.com/adrenal-info Iron needs to be optimal, too.

      Reply
      • Jan Erik

        Hmmm. Intresting… What about the negativ feedback loop of 14 days. Will this happen when reducing dose also. I certainly feel that way. After 3-4 days my heartrate and temp falled to normal but after 14 days they came back up!

        Reply
  22. Jan Erik

    Fascinating reading! That was just what was happening this season. On the same dose of Armour, with the labworks showing constant levels of Ft3 and Ft4. But TSH was elevated suggested that I needed to raise my NDT dose. Which of course got me hyper AND hypo at the same time! Cortisol ref. Values is <21.6 Nmol/l in the morning and <6.0 or 50% of morning levels

    Reply
  23. Bud in Key West

    Now 69, I have been on thyroid since 8 years. My mother took ‘Synthyroid” I could not take without bad reactions. At 8 my doctor put me on Armour, which I took until several years ago when the FDA made them stop. While Armour did rebalance my metabolism ( and help me to grow to normal height) I never felt ‘normal’, something just never felt 100%. When I could not get an Armour refill, like many I panicked, and scrambled to find a replacement. For the few days following my Doc had me on Synthyroid and I thought I was going to die. I found Naturethroid, got my doc to fax a prescription and 3 days later I was on it. That was almost 4 years ago.

    In all these 60 years of taking a thyroid supplement, it is the FIRST time I have felt like what I think ‘normal’ feels like. I can only say how this product has worked for me, but as I pointed out the others did not work or I never felt right. Nature-throid is a Godsend for me. I have zero activity, so I take 4 grains per day, and to save money I buy 1,000 tablets each refill with my own money, that is how important this pill is to me ( see note below about Medicare and United Health Care).

    As a MALE, it seems that not to many men have this deficiency, but it made both the Army and Navy refuse my enlistment in the 1960’s…yes indeed, they tested for this. Now my question is why has Medicare and my insurance ( United Health Care) refused to cover ANY thyroid supplements when the Department of Defense knows that without thyroid supplement I could go into a coma and die? What about you?

    Reply
    • Janie Bowthorpe

      Hi Bud. It’s Armour that Medicare refuses to cover on the ridiculous grounds that it’s unsafe for seniors. That could also include all other NDTs, by default. But they do cover the lousy synthetics, ironically. Fortunately, though, NDT (other than Armour) is quite cheap. Another irony…in the United Healthcare Tiers, NP Thyroid is Tier 1 and is a great NDT!

      Armour Thyroid 3
      Levothyroxine Sodium 1
      Liothyronine Sodium 2
      NP Thyroid Tablet 1
      Synthroid 2
      Tirosint 3 E

      Reply
      • Bud in Key West

        I am looking in my 2016 United Health Care Drug coverage ( AARP/Medicare Complete) and Levothyroxine Sodium 1
        Liothyronine Sodium 2, and Synthroid as 3 tier are listed. There is no NP Thyroid Tablet listed. I hate to spend out of pocket funds when I am paying a monthly “PILL” premium to them and getting zip benefit…… looks like I have no choice.

        Do you know of an insurance company that will cover Nature-throid, so when November rolls around I can change?

        By The way…just got a pharmacy notice that Armor is now $78 for 30 pills ( without coverage), so I will stick with Nature-throid.

        Reply
  24. Sonya

    Hello, I’ve been on Armour for many years but have had a lot of other health issues–including celiac disease. I know it an oft discussed thing, about the fillers, but I’ll just comment quickly on that–my naturopath asked several people about the armour containing gluten and they said no. We contacted the manufacturer, and they said no gluten. We contacted a compounding pharmacist who contacted a pharmacist at the manufacturer and they said that there is often traces of gluten in armour, they source from several different starches depending on what they have at the time, and as long as it is less than 20PPM the company line is “gluten free” which is what they are told to say and is what they can legally say. Anyhow…long way around saying that I’ve just switched to Naturthyroid and the last few days have been a little “off” for lack of a better word. I’ll give it a good go, but wondered if many people have an adjustment period when switching between NDT thyroid meds. I take 1 1/2 grains 2x/day, and we did an even switch (which I understand that I’m probably getting more than I was before). I also did not know to do it sublingually, my last Dr insisted that it did not make an ounce of difference.

    Reply
    • Janie Bowthorpe

      I think the adjustment revolves around one NDT being a better, stronger product than the one left behind. i.e. it can reveal an iron or cortisol problem that the previous NDT wasn’t. Otherwise, many have no issue after changing a brand.

      Reply
  25. Catalina Moreno

    I’m thinking of asking my doctor to switch me from 45 mg of Armour to Naturethroid – I’m looking at still needing two pills?

    Reply
  26. Debbie Eggert

    I started Nature throid 6 months ago after 38 years on synthroid. I am experiencing joint problems on my left shoulder blade and lower back, thought it was sciatica but been to the Chiropractor 7 times for adjustments and even though it hurts I continue to do light weight exercises but this pain will not go away. Do you think eventually my body will adjust to this medication and get better?

    Reply
  27. Birdie

    Thank you for so much valuable information on your site – we consult it regularly!

    Question about conversions: Switching from 88mcg synthetic T4 1x per day to 32.5mg (1/2 grain) WP Thyroid NDT 2x per day for total of 65mg (1 grain) per day.

    An online Thyroid Conversion Chart shows that 1 grain (65mg) of NDT = 100mcg of synthetic, which is a higher dose than the 88mcg of current synthetic.

    Could higher NDT dosage cause ‘hyper’ symptoms? Should starting dose be less than 1 grain to match 88mcg of synthetic? Endo wants to recheck in 8 weeks.

    Reply
    • Janie Bowthorpe

      Birdie, an important thing for you to know is that those conversion charts are lousy. For example, I used to be on .125 Synthroid, and it stated my conversion was 1 1/4 grains. Yet my optimal dose ended up being 3 3/4 grains then (I’m now optimal at 3 1/2 grains). Of course, each person is going to have their own unique “optimal” dose, but one grain is hardly EVER optimal. It’s a starting dose from which we raise. You really need to study this page: http://www.stopthethyroidmadness.com/natural-thyroid-101 and then strongly teach this to your Endo is he or she is teachable.

      Reply
      • Birdie

        Thanks so much for your reply Janie! We’ve read over the 101 but still wondered about the starting dose of NDT and how (or if) it might correspond to the previous synthetic dose. Is there no comparison at all? Is starting NDT after synthetic sort of like starting from scratch?

        Don’t think Endo will go for writing a scrip and raising every two weeks – wants to retest in 8 weeks. But we are concerned about the feedback loop… and continuing hypo symptoms.

        Reply
        • Janie Bowthorpe

          Correct, it has nothing to do with a corresponding dose at all. It has to do with what is safe to start on for most. i.e. how much direct T3 can someone tolerate when starting on ndt (when they haven’t been used to it because of being on only T4-only). And we concluded years ago that one grain fit the bill ‘for most’. And yes, you do need to be concerned about waiting 8 weeks. Hypo does get much, much worse because of the feedback loop issue, and as with the starting dose, we saw that most of shouldn’t go much longer than two weeks without raising. Occasionally, some notice the problem after one week!

          Reply
          • Birdie

            Thanks for clearing our confusion about NDT vs synthetic equivalencies. That helps a lot! Will see how the NDT works out… hopefully endo will be responsive if we notice feedback loop happening.

          • Janie Bowthorpe

            Good luck! It’s never going to be easy working with doctors on this. They are used to the lousy Synthroid etc, which you can in fact go several weeks. You can’t with NDT. T4 is simply a storage hormone and takes a lot of time to see it’s effect to conversion of T3. Direct T3 is pretty fast, just as it’s effect on dampening the feedback loop will be. You will also have to fight your Endo’s tendency to dose by the TSH–that can’t be done either. http://www.stopthethyroidmadness.com/tsh-why-its-useless

            P.S. This is all why STTM was created, Birdie. Doctors have been awful in their understanding of how to properly treat hypothyroidism, awful in their understanding of how to really read labwork (it’s NOT about just falling in the normal range), awful in connecting the dots about symptoms to meds and/or med amounts…on and on. We HAD to figure things out on our own, and STTM is the compilation of what patients have figured out to get well over the years. It’s solid. This is also why the revised STTM book will help patients get that knowledge, as well. KNOWLEDGE, and the willingness to push our doctors for the right care, is important. Otherwise, we’ll fire them and find much more open-minded doctors who will listen to years of patient experiences and wisdom.

  28. Anshul G

    Hi-
    My story is a little different. I had a back injury and for some reason my ortho physician ordered a hell lot of blood work. Thyroid panel was also part of it. My reading came out TSH=3.61, FT3=2.8, FT4=1.1 – I had no symptoms at all. Dr said I should start Armour, but I did not. Then a year later, I got it tested again TSH=4.85, FT3=2.9, FT4=1.1 -No symptoms still. I started Naturethroid for 3 months, but stopped as a chiropractor suggested if I don’t have symptoms don’t do the medication. Then a year later(last month) I did my labs again TSH=28, FT4=0.8, TPO Antibodies=1161- No symptoms still. What do you think I should do given I don’t have any symptoms?

    Reply
    • Janie Bowthorpe

      Having antibodies that high is a symptom though. And you probably have others that you aren’t putting two and two about… If your situation were mine, I’d start treating that Hashi’s. But you will have to decide. http://www.stopthethyroidmadness.com/hashimotos

      Reply
      • Anshul G

        Thanks Janie for the response. I feel like I’m getting more info from here than anywhere else. My doctor prescribed me 1/4 grain to slowly increase to 1 grain till follow-up in 6 weeks. The thing that I’m not sure about is that he also asked me to take two Adrenal supplements by ‘Design for Health’ named –
        ‘Adrenal Support’
        ‘Adrenotone’
        My blood cortisol level was 7.65 around 11.30 AM. This is the only reading he had for cortisol. Again like I told you, I told him that I’m not sure about any symptoms. The supplements has Whole Adrenal Extract, Cortex and a bunch of other things. My fasting glucose was slightly elevate (=99)
        A1C=5.6
        Do you think supplementing for Adrenal with the amount of info he had and a slightly elevated sugar level makes sense? Is he picking the right supplements?
        I’ll really appreciate your help here.
        Thanks,
        Anshul

        Reply
        • Janie Bowthorpe

          Here’s the deal: We have learned the hard way to ALWAYS do adrenal saliva testing to see exactly what’s going on at four key times. Treating a cortisol issue is not willy-nilly. There is a method, we’ve found out, not just “Here, take this”. And it’s important to see if we have high cortisol vs low cortisol via saliva. Blood doesn’t cut it–it’s measuring bound vs unbound cortisol, where 80% or more is bound. Saliva not only tests four key times during the day, which is crucial, but tells you what is available to your cells i.e. unbound. It’s not that the supplement you are on is going to hurt you, but it’s not the way to do it according to our vast amount of wise experiences. http://www.stopthethyroidmadness.com/adrenal-wisdom

          Reply
  29. Tiffany

    I see a lot of comments about people adjusting their own doses and even purchasing their own thyroid meds without a prescription. How does one do that? I am currently on Armour and am still on the same dose as when the doctor started me on it 4 months ago. I have been gaining weight and although “in the normal range” my TSH is high for me, my Free T4 is low for me, and my Free T3 is low for me. Despite that, and the fact that I am gaining weight just by breathing these days- my doctor doesn’t want to adjust my dose. I do take Selenium daily. The other option the doc gave me was to switch to Nature-Throid. I have already been on Synthroid and Cytomel. I would love any comments or recommendations. I hate this hashimotos train!

    Reply
  30. DEBORAH

    I am on 137mcg synthroid..levothyrozine….
    the Dr just switched me over to 130mg Nature-throid
    I have no thyroid..it was taken out in the 90’s surgically.
    Question/I’m nervous about this. Is this a good move to go toward?

    Reply
    • Janie Bowthorpe

      No, we have found that to be a very unwise move. Why? We have noticed that if our bodies are not used to direct T3, it can be too stimulative to start that high. Also, some people have a cortisol issue or inadequate iron, and NDT will reveal that with hyper as we raise. So starting that high can be a disaster. We found that one grain is a safe starting dose for most from which we raise as explained here: http://www.stopthethyroidmadness.com/natural-thyroid-101 Teach it to your doctor.

      Reply
  31. Lynn Geosits

    I have been on 90 mg of Armour Thyroid and 97 or Nature-throid for the last 12 years and feel great. My insurance changed and I have a new doctor and he said because my TSH is suppressed at .140 I am overtreated and I do not need any medication, even though my Free T-4 is .81 and Free T-3 is 2.5, both within range. I am very freaked out and cannot find another doctor in town who does NDT and is covered by my insurance. My Dr, a Dr Berger In Boulder CO, said that of course I feel better on Thyroid medication, but people feel better on cocaine, too. He said I will get osteoporosis if I continue with the NDT. I mentioned your website and he said there are websites that advocate Donald Trump, too. He has agreed to let me take 65 mg for now, but I feel sluggish and am gaining weight around my stomach and feel cold even when it is hot out. He said lots of people feel cold and that there are no symptoms of too much NDT when I told him that at 97 mgs I have no hyper symptoms. I am feeling a lot of anxiety from his comments. I wish I could have my old doctor back as I felt great with his treatment, but cannot afford him without insurance. HELP! What research can I show this new doctor to prove myself?

    Reply
  32. Andrea

    I have finally convinced my endo to prescribe Naturethroid, but is 65 enough to start with after being on Synthroid 112 for many years? He has done no research and won’t let me finish a sentence. He didn’t mention increasing it in two weeks, as he only prescribed 30 pills and did not have me move up my next appt., which isn’t until the end of September 2016. Thank you for all of your wisdom and compassion!

    Reply
  33. Laura

    Hi Janie, my doctor gave me a prescription for Nature Throid but cautioned me that she has seen an increase in antibodies in patients on it. My antibody count is already at 50.

    This is the only reason holding me back from trying Nature Throid. Any comments or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    Reply
    • Janie Bowthorpe

      Laura!! Your doctor doesn’t get it! Yes…at the beginning use of NDT, the antibodies go up. But patients found that as they continued to raise to find their optimal dose, that stopped. And for some, that optimal dose LOWERED the antibodies. We think the latter happened because NDT is such a better treatment that it improves the immune system. http://www.stopthethyroidmadness.com/hashimotos

      Reply
      • Laura

        Thank you, that gives me hope. I tried generic Levothyroxine for 3 weeks and now I just started taking a prescription from a compound pharmacy. Today is the second day and already feel more tired than before 2 days of this medication. My arms feel heavy, ongoing hair loss and depression. It is really Thyroid Madness! I must have visited 5 different doctors. Nobody knows how to treat this condition. It’s been 3 years of frustration. I will read more on hashimotos on STTM. Thanks again for your prompt reply.

        Reply
  34. Sapna

    I began Low Dose Naltrexone (LDN) in Dec. 2015 to help with my Hashi’s and RA. Now after a little over 6 months on LDN, my usual (for decades) dose of Synthroid, .125 mcg needs to be lowered to .112 mcg. I suggested to my endo to try NatureThroid. She has rx’d 1 grain daily and 1.5 grains on the weekend. Its week 2 now, and I think I will follow the recommendation to increase by half a grain. I know the typical conversion charts going from Synthroid to NDT are inaccurate, but is there a suggested dosage conversion by “our standards” for .112 Synthroid to NDT? While I do feel better on NDT, and I am in touch with my body, I am concerned I won’t know when I’ve hit my “optimal dose” on the NDT. I don’t want to screw this up.

    Also, please look into LDN for your Hashi’s! It lowered my TPOs tremendously! Also .125 mcg has always been my Synthroid dose, and for the first time I need to have it lowered. It also keeps me RA under control.

    Thank you everyone and best to all in your journey to wellness.

    Reply
  35. RNG

    I’m having so many problems regulating my Nature Thyroid. My Dr tests Free t3, free t4, TSH,(useless I know) and reverse T3. My t3 levels were through the roof on the last tests, should be in the range of 1.5 to 3.5 and was 5.9!), my HR was 170 while walking and I was sweating nonstop. Sometimes raising to quickly isn’t always a good thing! Now she has me alternating doses of 81.5mg and 97.5 every other day. I honestly don’t see any difference in the way I feel after switching from Synthyroid over a year ago as I was hoping. And my iron levels have been checked and are normal. Hoping we find that sweet spot soon.

    Reply

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