How to make reformulated Armour and Naturethroid work!

Screen Shot 2015-11-28 at 8.05.11 PMThis was written in 2010, but can apply when a pharmaceutical changes a tablet, such as has happened again to Armour in 2015.


In case you are missing comments on my previous posts, there is a potential solution to the problems encountered with both the reformulated Armour by Forest Labs, and the reformulated Naturethroid by RLC.

Namely, by either crushing your tablet with a mortar and pestle, or chewing it up in little pieces, patients are starting to report far better symptom relief!! i.e., this process is probably breaking down the ridiculous coatings and cellulose and allowing your body better access to the desiccated thyroid within.

And if you just can’t stomach the pulverized pill method, add a touch of honey to the powder, and lick it all up.

Let us know how it works for you!

Want to see the newest Question & Answer page on STTM? Go here.


To read my Editorial Response, go here (or if you are reading this on the blog, right below)
To read my informal survey on the new Armour, go here.
To read UK Sheila Turner’s Guest post on those who criticize self-treatment, go here.
10 reasons thyroid patients are frustrated, angry and sick, here.

153 Responses to “How to make reformulated Armour and Naturethroid work!”

  1. Vicky

    I have been on levoxyl for 10 years and was decent until it was pulled and had to switch to synthroid and back to levoxyl was it was available again. I also take Cortef due to Addison’s. I have been in a down hill spiral the last year with extreme fatigue and shortness of breathe. I found this site a couple months ago. I found a Dr. who had me do a saliva test which results are t back yet and added 15 mg armour to my 100 mg levoxyl and wanted to increase another 15 mg after several days. However with the armour added my pulse is 90 plus and I can feel my heart beating rapidly. Afraid to increase more armour. Any suggestions.

  2. Lisa marker

    Have been on armour about three years thought it was a miracle drug after being on synthroid, all of a sudden all my symptoms back joint pain, muscle pain, fatigue, shortness of breath. Just knew my numbers would be off but blood tests came back fine. Doctor took me off of meds for a week to rule out them causing the issue said maybe need to change. Scared of not only how bad I will feel this week but also of changing meds again. Also I have developed carpul tunnel within last few weeks to add to everything else going on. Any suggestions?

  3. Andrea

    I have low t3/t4 (.7) and low tsh(.2), and have been on 30mg of armour for a year. I have been having progressive muscle loss and fat gain. Some doctors tell me to increase my dose and others tell me to eliminate. I’ve had every other test run to see why my muscles are disapearing, but nothing… I feel it has to do with my thyroid. But it seems muscle loss is a symptom of hyper not hypo. Does anyone else have this? Not sure if it’s caused by the armour either since it seemed to start about a year ago as well. Any thoughts? Thank u

  4. Marilyn

    I need some advice! I started Armour last January after being on Synthroid for 22 years. What a difference it has made in my life! Started at 90mg. I was slowly increased every 6 weeks or so. 3 weeks ago my MD upped it another 15mg, so now I am on 90 and 60. (split doses) A week or so after starting this new dosage, I developed hypo symptoms. Dark puffy bags under my eyes, extreme fatigue and I am losing my hair. The only time I have EVER had any of those symptoms was when I was hypo. Increasing my Synthroid got rid of those symptoms pretty quickly. Now I am totally baffled. Why would I go hypo with a small dosage increase of Armour? Anybody?? Help!!

  5. Jenny

    My dr prescribed me 97.5MG of Nature-Throi. I was told (not by dr or pharmacist) that I needed to chew it. I just did and the taste was so bad that I started gagging. There has to be a better way.

  6. Ivan K.

    Just to say, Naturethroid’s own site lists conversion as 1 grain of NT = 100mcgs of Levothyroxine. That was my prescribed Levo dose, 100mcgs. This is the second time I’ve used NT for its supposed greater benefits & after 5 months this time, even with taking 1 & 1/2 grains on some days, during both periods on NT I’ve become hypo with elevated TSH figures – last recorded as 27. Either the conversion tables are very wrong, or else this product is ineffective for some people. I need to say this as whilst the Levo would be prescribed freely for me, my GPs don’t offer NT, considering it inconsistent. Do they have a point? As I pay for NT, frankly, not too impressed so far as much as I wanted something natural.

  7. Susie Park

    I’m currently on 125 mcg of levothyroxine (I had a total thyroidectomy 2 months ago for papillary thyca) and my Dr just agreed to let me try Nature-throid to optimize my FreeT3 (it’s on the low end of normal, T4 in the high end of normal). He prescribed 1.25 grains which is only 47.5 mcg of T4. I’m concerned this is too low a dose and my hypo symptoms will return. What’s your opinion?

    Thank you!

  8. Anna

    Does Armour Thyroid seem to be working better now than right after the unappreciated reformulation? Reviews are really mixed, so it’s difficult to figure out if Armour is indeed working better now, suggesting it has been reformulated again; not back to the original formula, but maybe not as bad as back in 2009…?

    • Cathie

      I would also be interested in finding out, since I have been seeing very mixed reviews lately…Janie, do you think Armour has been reformulated somehow lately (since Actavis bought Forest?) and, if so, how…?

      • Janie Bowthorpe

        Based on so many patients who had been doing well on Armour, only to see their symptoms come back…as well as some saying the tablets don’t have their characteristic NDT smell…who knows. But clearly, something changed for the worse. And tripling the price on top of changing them somehow give Activas the Poop Award.

  9. Trisha

    Having been on Armour since March 1997, I got to know it very well. Admittedly, it took years to fully get it down to both an art and a science on my
    dosing, given varying factors such as seasonal changes in particular, with my
    levels peaking in Aug./Sept. and then plummeting come December. It was also 10X easier to monitor it before it
    spiked or dropped. After the 2009 reformulation – that all changed.
    That being said, I was SO compromised & nonfunctional when I first started on NDT, and since I am RN,
    I was knowledgable of SL absorption. Thus, I was NOT going to take ANY chances whatsoever of not absorbing
    100% of its potential (or passing any of it unabsorbed). Therefore, I crushed it with my teeth for SL (sublingual absorption),
    from the very first day I was ever on NDT.
    Then after staying abreast of the reformulation, the changes in dextrose &
    increase in cellulose, etc., I would add some honey or other to perhaps boost
    What I do now… is, I add a tad of HCL to it under my tongue to enhance
    it’s breakdown first & foremost, to ideally, potentiate its absorption (particularly with any/all binders & fillers).
    I will either chip a tiny piece of HCL (hydrochloric acid) tablet – or, open up a capsule, tilt my head back, and add/sprinkle it under my tongue. With
    aging too, one’s HCL diminishes. One
    could also add a tad of an enzyme (combined or proteolytic), in the same manner. Bottom line, it can only help
    and seems to have for me.
    As for any recent changes via Activas,
    I have another 5 month supply remaining under the Armour name (via Forest) – so I
    will have to see come then. All these changes and downgrades of NDT efficacy (Armour, Nature-Throid, ERFA – having been on them ALL) – is beyond maddening!

    • gina

      Hi Trisha – It’s beyond the 5 month mark now and I am wondering if you are still using Armour and if so, how it’s working out for you now that your into your first Activas batch??? A good friend of mine is a medical nutritionist and does not recommend Armour anymore…

  10. Jeana Montes

    I bought the book Stop the Thyroid Madness and I’m on chapter 4. I had to Stop and get online because for many years I was put on almost every synthetic thyroid medication, but even on the smallest dose my bp would eventually go so high and having a stroke was a concern. I’ve been asking for Armour throughout the years and finally last week they agreed and put me on only 15 mgs. While I was reading the book I read. that it has to be crushed. Now as I’m reading these comments I’m very concerned that this will be no different because it sounding more like big pharma taking over. This is my last chance on these medications. I know my Dr won’t prescribe me another dessicrated thyroid medication. What can I do?

  11. Trisha

    Gina, my apologies. My life has been upside down since May finding out I have Celiac disease and dealing with other things, too. That aside, I remain in Armour and got a new batch. However, IT stills bears the name of “Forest” on it and NOT Activas. I inquired with some other local pharmacies and sane thing – none are reporting the Activas name on the bottle. So I don’t know if they want to keep the original Armour & Firest red & white label in the bottle or what.
    Still, I’ve noted no change and am doing well on it. I get it they the VA as a veteran so I don’t have to pay. Personally, I would love to be on the Acella brand having heard great reports of it, however, they seem to be in back order often and I wouldn’t want to risk robbing out of it. Then again, I can’t beat FREE! I paid for my own Aoyr for years and didn’t mind when the cost was reasonable.
    So that’s the scoop. The Armoyr seems to be okay and decent, and I see no other comments here of late so I’m inclined to think people aren’t panicking anymore and the issue had settled.
    I hope you get this.

  12. Trisha

    May I encourage you NOT to jump the gun! I think you are gun shy with all you’ve been through.
    First and foremost, NDT is not, I repeat NOT the same as the synthetics. That should be more than clear as you read and study. So you are doing YOURSELF a grave injustice in assuming prematurely, and in assuming period (quite frankly), that it’s going to be the same thing this time around.
    As for 15 mg – is that in addition to your synthetic or alone? That is nothing!
    Your biggest challenge will be increasing the dosage until you get what you need. Next to that, ALWAYS and only be with a doctor who has your back – not someone who is rigid and doing things by the book – at your expense!
    Synthetics and NDT are two different worlds. Take hope and responsibility for your own health. If your doctor won’t work with you ALL the way – find another who will!

    • Jeana Montes

      I’ve been taking it since the first. Thankfully I’m not shaking and blood pressure has remained low, but I feel awful! I’m sure I don’t have to comment on all my sxs. I pretty much have all of them. Living like this is so depressing! I’m going to call my Dr tomorrow and ask if she can up my dose. I miss the person I once was. I can no longer fake it to make it in front of company. This is who I am right now and they either have to understand or not because I’m too tired! Thank you for replying and I’ll keep you all updated!

      • Janie Bowthorpe

        Yes, either a more optimal dose is needed to bring your free T3 towards the top part of the range and the free T4 midrange (we always do labs to find the right amount), or a different brand is needed. Since Forest was bought out by Activas in 2014, a lot of patients started to report a return of their symptoms on Armour beginning in early 2015, though others are still doing well on it. Each person has to figure out where they stand with Armour now.

        • Jeana Montes

          Janie, thank you so much for changing so many lives! For many years I thought I was crazy and perhaps everyone around me was right. The words “snap out of it”, yet I tried so hard to but couldn’t. You nailed it in your book when you said how you exercised and paid the price for a couple of days. People on this site don’t know me, but I was always a fighter and my mentality was mind over matter. So I understand my family and how they think I’m simply in a depressed state. I’ve been diagnosed with major depressive disorder, agraphobia, PTSD, ADHD, bipolar, and many more psychological symptoms. For years I try to seek this kind of help and was admitted to a psych ward too many times to count. You see I do have depression on my side of the family bu up until 7 years ago I never was depressed. Sure I had the occasional Blues yet it was usually circumstantial. Everything changed and I didn’t want to give up on my family or my children so I kept seeking help. All those years they said I had hypothyroidism but I never connected that with my psychological problems. After you’ve had enough, you start looking and looking and seeking for answers, and so I just kept Googling every symptom I had and it turned out it was because of my thyroid. I then joined a group on Facebook. I would call off my lab test and would hear other comments they were mixed actually but the one that heard most was that my thyroid was way off and all my symptoms that I had mentioned we’re related to that. I also took the DNA test from 23andMe and have that same gene deficiency that you noted before. It only comes from one side of the family and I guess I should be fortunate seeing as though it doesn’t come from both but as you know it could actually take over the whole body. It just depends on the individual. So I up my dose today to 30 milligrams. I definitely don’t feel any different right now but according to my doctor it takes 6 weeks for it to fully go through your body I guess I get a little impatient because I hear so many stories of how people right away felt great but that’s not the situation with me. I’m going to search for a holistic doctor regarding my thyroid in my area. I don’t have a car or rather I can’t drive right now and I live in a small state the smallest state actually. I’m going to try to keep fighting because I miss who I was and embarrassing as this is I did try to throw away everything a few times and I’m still here. Somebody up there must have a bigger calling on my life to keep me around. So I sincerely thank you for writing your books I know one was written by you or the other one was written or edited by you with a bunch of doctors and it gives a lot of people like me hope. I can only take it one day at a time I’ll be honest with you, everyday I need to be reminded that it’s not me that it’s something that needs to be fixed inside me, and I’m not crazy! This is real! One day I hope that I will scream on this site, I feel great! I’ll even settle for good, but I’m unsure of what that is. Huge reductions of symptoms is what I seek! Thank you again! Also, because I’m new to Armour, I will give you my honest opinion and let you all know if my labs have changed for the better. Mine Ida by Actavis.


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