Honestly, this are the kind of tough experiences that you learn only if you walk this path.
The phrases, I wished I would have known, or I wished things were different, or if I can travel to the past to avoid these mistakes, are just phrases that we have to leave aside, and cope with the reality that we are dealing with Hashimoto, an autoimmune disease that affects the Thyroid.
As I have mentioned in other posts, I do give a great part of having this autoimmune condition to the use of antibiotics that affected badly the gut lining, making the gut leaky, and having particles such as de gliadin of gluten go into our bloodstream, it get attacked by our immune system but also it confuses it and eventually it inflamates the thyroid.
This process is still not really fully told in other so called authority medical websites.
And here is where I want to add my experience and testimonial with the hope that if someone else is out there looking as well for answers, they can also learn about the things that have helped me and what not in this Autoimmune Hashimoto life.
Again, this has been my path of what has helped me, I am not a doctor and take this as reference, not as your medical advice.
And you probably lived with it, with the experience of going with the doctor, testing your thyroid labs such as TSH, T3 and T4 and you were given levothyroxine to treat your Hashimoto.
But now the Hashimoto community knows that this is not the way to heal an autoimmune condition.
Hashimoto is not a disease where the “bad guy” is the thyroid, is the confused immune system.
To heal your Hashimoto, or set your symptoms in remission you must have lifestyle changes and also you must adapt your nutritional patterns and address any nutritional deficiencies.
For me it took time to learn this, but there were certain foods that generate the increase of antibodies and eventually are also the reason to get different symptoms.
There will be certain foods that are the responsible of your symptoms, therefore you will have to find out which one are those and remove them from your diet.
You should also add foods that enrich your diet and give you energy.
Another important parts in healing Hashimoto naturally is that you should address any stress issues that you might have.
The rise of Cortisol levels will also affect the prodution of hormones, therefore it is also important to take care of your mental health, and try to reduce your stress factors.
In my case, I have had low levels of Pregnenolone, a pre-hormone that is used on the production of other hormones, such cortisol and testosterone, and as I understand, if I am under constant stress, then my body will be focusing the energy on the production of cortisol.
And probably here is one the most important tests to do if you have Hashimoto Thyroiditis.
The thing is that in general this test might be quite expensive.
So if going to a lab to test for Food Sensitivities and see which foods create anitbodies reaction is not an option by the moment, then you can start by creating an elimination diet.
I did this test in Germany, but my doctor here in Mexico was also going to ask for the Food Sensitivities test.
Overall, it is recommended to leave out Gluten, Dairy and Egg, but every person is different and unique, and what might have a reaction on me, might not be the same for you, so listen to your body.
In my case, Casein, a protein found in Dairy, was not on my reactions list, plus having a glass of low fat milk for me is not a problem.
Here I share with you the list of foods that I reacted for antibodies.
Group 1 is food that I can eat daily. Group 2 is food that I could intercalate. Group 3 is food with moderate antibody reaction. Group 4 is food with high antibody reaction.
There are foods that will affect your thyroid, but also there are foods that will help you to heal.
Here are some important vitamins that you should keep an eye to.
The crucial and important vitamin D.
While living in Germany, and I tested for vitamin D, I was actually pretty low.
Once back here in Mexico, my functional medicine doctor didn’t test back again until several months after I started the treatment with him.
Vitamin D plays a crucial role in people with Autoimmune diseases.
Historically, vitamin D has been associated with the regulation of bone metabolism. However, increasing evidence demonstrates a strong association between vitamin D signaling and many biological processes that regulate immune responses. (Yang et al, 2013)
Source of Vitamin D is the Sun. Getting at least 15 minutes a day of sun exposure will help you to keep optimal Vitamin D levels.
Of course Vitamin D is also sometimes added on certain foods, such as milk or coconut milk, therefore if you tolerate low-fat milk, some of them are added with Vitamin D. It is important to mention that in some autoimmune conditions dairy is not recommended. So, as previously mentioned, it will be a matter to see if your body generates antibodies to casein or lactose.
There are also Vitamin D supplements with Vitamin K. The one I am taking is from Thorne.
Vitamin B has another test that I have done and that I was also on low levels.
Also, it is worth mentioning that Homocysteine could be in higher levels, so you might also prefer to test that and for sure you will have to increase your Vitamin B.
In patients with autoimmune hypothyroidism, vit-D and vit-B12 deficiency should be investigated at the time of diagnosis and periodically on follow-ups. (Aktaş H.Ş., 2020)
Zinc, Copper and Selenium are mentioned to be important for a good thyroid function.
In a study, it is mentioned that the blood concentration of essential trace elements, especially the ratio of Copper, and Selenium may influence directly thyroid function in patients with Hashimoto Thyroiditis and overt hypothyroidism. (Milutinovic et al 2016)
Brazil nuts are rich in selenium, make sure you add them to your diet.
Well this is a discussion you must have, but with a functional medicine doctor.
Conventional doctors and endocrinologists just aim to use Levothyroxine as your hormone replacement therapy, but as mentioned, this is not the full correct path to heal.
In my experience, the brand Eutorix has made me more damage than good.
Probably for other people have worked, but in me it has created awful tachycardias, chest pressures, and I did not have good sleep.
I did tried Synthyroid, but it was as bad as Eutorix.
Even when I tried to not take any thyroid pill, I actually felt better and sleep way better, but eventually I started to have Raynauds Phenomena in a winter season and also leg pain. My TSH labs were on the normal range, but with the doctor I agreed to take back Levothyroxine.
I had again the sleep problems and the horrible chest pressure, so I asked for another brand. In Mexico there is Karet, and when I changed to it, I did not have again the sleep problems and neither the chest pressure.
I would have saved lot of horrible symptoms if I have started with this brand, but well, in my case, Eutirox is a never again.
But my siste who is Hypothyroid since 6 years old, she had that brand and it seems for her it worked.
So if you are aiming to go totally natural on your Hashimoto healing, then try it, your body will be the one who dictate if you need some hormone replacement therapy.
Also, in the United States, there are people who are on the desyccated thyroid as therapy and it seem it is a good option. But certainly this will be different among the availability of this more natural way of treating your thyroid.
So I do recommend to discuss this with your doctor.
My recommendation with levothyroxine is to start slow and gradually increase according to your labs and your overall feeling.
If you feel chest pains, tremors, anxiety or any other symptoms, ask to change your prescriptions.
Mostly, doctors say that “your body has to adapt to the dosage”, but I do think that our bodies are smart and they will react if something is not good for the body, and that includes a pill that is not good for your body.