(This post was updated in 2015! Enjoy!)
In my most recent post of May 21st, 2012, I showed you two examples of very poignant emails I get weekly. And the second one revealed how hard it can be when you not only have very little money, but an uninformed doctor who ends up keeping you sick.
Yesterday, I received another email from a thyroid patient which simply blew me away, directed to the gal above. But it turns out her words are very appropriate for all of us. Read it carefully and enjoy.
I am also hypothyroid. I am on Armour Thyroid, but if I couldn’t get it, I would still take the following supplements to try and give my thyroid gland the support and boost that it needs in order to make its own hormones. Please consider starting on one or more of these and see how you feel. I’m listing the most important ones first.
1. Sunlight! We all need sunlight every day. Our bodies make vitamin D3 in the skin following exposure to sunlight. People who are overweight are usually low in vitamin D3. D3 helps the thyroid. D3 from sunlight is the best kind; D3 supplements are not as good. Don’t believe the medical profession when they try to scare you off from getting sunlight, and don’t use harmful chemical sunscreens; just cover up with longer clothing after you have had your desired sun exposure. Vitamin D3 actually has a protective effect against most cancers. Best of all, it’s free.
2. Iodine – it is part of the raw material for thyroid hormone. Buy a cheap bottle of simple iodine tincture and paint a drop on your skin each day with a cotton-tipped swab. It helps in so many ways. Not only does iodine supply the thyroid gland with raw material for hormone, but it is the body’s own natural antibiotic. The neutrophils (specialized white blood cells) each contain a speck of iodine to help fight off microbes. And the eyes and ears work better if iodine is sufficient in the body. The ciliary body of the eye has a rich concentration of iodine. And the little cochlea of the inner ear contains fluids – perilymph and endolymph – which contain iodine as well.
3. Selenium – a co-nutrient with iodine. Iodine should always be taken with selenium. I get my selenium in the form of pumpkin seeds, 2 tablespoons each day.
4. Magnesium – I make my own magnesium oil and apply it to my skin daily. Janie will tell you how wonderful magnesium oil is – it helps to burn calories by supplying the “flame” for metabolism. And it’s very anti-inflammatory, with no side effects. My recipe is as follows: Stir a cup of magnesium chloride flakes and a cup of pure water together in a bowl for 5 minutes until dissolved, then pour into a clean plastic spray bottle (like what you might use for ironing). The Zechstein Sea magnesium chloride flakes are the purest; they are from a mine underneath the Netherlands, an ancient sea of 250 million years ago. A 1-kilo bag of Zechstein magnesium chloride flakes should last you more than a year. (From Janie: you can also use a good quality magnesium supplement, which I switched to after this date!)
5. Green leafy vegetables, a dietary source of magnesium – these are helpful in so many ways and are great either raw or cooked. If you cook them, top them with a little salt, a squeeze of lemon juice and a splash of olive oil.
6. Vitamin C – helps the liver to convert T4 to the active T3 hormone. I always have more energy when I remember to take 500 mg of vitamin C twice daily.
7. Coconut oil – really! It supports the thyroid and helps with weight loss. Try to get raw or unprocessed coconut oil, but in a pinch any coconut oil is helpful. Take 1-3 tablespoons per day. Stir it into yogurt and chill it if you don’t like to swallow oil.
8. Avoid refined carbohydrates like the plague, please! They are not food at all. It is impossible to lose weight if one is eating refined cereal, bread, pasta, pizza and sweets. These trigger the body to produce more insulin; the insulin then triggers the cells to store the calories as fat. This is from the book by Gary Taubes, Good Calories, Bad Calories.
9. Avoid using harmful chemicals to clean your house; use vinegar and baking soda for most cleaning jobs. Bleach, ammonia and other chemicals are extremely harmful to your thyroid gland; chlorine displaces iodine in the body.
10. Simplify your personal care supplies to further reduce your toxic exposures (this saves money too). Throw away the fluoridated toothplaste, and brush with baking soda. Hydrogen peroxide 3% makes a good dental rinse. Baking soda dusted under the arms is an excellent and nontoxic deodorant. If your skin is sensitive, mix equal amounts of baking soda and cornstarch and use that as deodorant. Use a soap with a very simple formula and no chemicals. Try to find a shampoo without SLS or parabens (carcinogens). To save even more money, stop using shampoo and wash your hair with a baking soda solution and rinse with a mild vinegar solution. Many people say their hair is lovely with this treatment; google “no poo” to learn more. If you have dry skin, massage in a drop of coconut oil. Don’t use commercial creams or lotions; don’t put anything on your skin that you wouldn’t eat.
I wish you all possible success with your health. Even if you haven’t much money, there are things you can do to feel better. Please let Janie know how you are doing in a few months’ time, so she can let us know! Your sisters and brothers in the STTM community will welcome your news.
All the best, and don’t lose hope. Better days are ahead. Lots of hugs,
Yvonne in Cyprus
Yvonne is an 57-year-old American whose background is in medical transcription, writing and editing. She is constantly reading in the medical journals and websites, looking for natural and inexpensive ways to improve health. She and her husband eat a Mediterranean diet (organic when possible) with good fats from olive and coconut oils, nuts and cheeses. She thinks every family should have some type of garden, even if it’s just a few herbs in a flowerpot.
Have any other recommendations for someone who is poor with thyroid disease, plus has a doctor who isn’t helping? Let others know!
P.S. from Janie: I already do many of the above. Do you? I’m big into Vit. C, magnesium and selenium. I also use liquid Vitamin D. I use baking soda for deodorant and non-fluoride toothpaste. I only use organic lotions and soaps. I outright use one tablespoon vinegar in my morning drink, as well as MCT oil (it’s what’s in coconut oil). I don’t avoid refined carbs totally (I’m too much of a chocolate freak), but I do avoid them in many places. And I love the sun.
Additional recommendation from Janie:
I think it’s also important to add that in addition to all the ways you can live a healthier life, also consider adding T3 to your T4, or look into natural desiccated thyroid with it’s five thyroid hormones. The latter is even cheaper than T4-only. Updating your thyroid treatment is not based on opinion! It’s based on the experiences of patients worldwide who found they got much better results, and which Stop the Thyroid Madness is about–worldwide experiences and wisdom!