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LIST OF NUTRIENTS FOR HYPERTHYROIDISM AND HYPOTHYROIDISM
(Warning: Use this list with caution and get advice from your physician before using these recommended supplements. The recommended amounts of these nutrients are for experimental purposes only and the potential effects of these nutrients on your health are unknown. You must be responsible for your own health and for knowing the consequences of taking these recommended supplements. I think these are reasonable amounts of these nutrients, but I am not a physician and do not know your health situation. This list is only my best guess about what might help these diseases. What has helped me or another person may cause adverse reactions in you. Consult your own physician.)
I consider hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism (including Graves' disease and Hashimoto's thyroiditis) as different phases of the same disease. I'm quite confident that both are caused by nutrient deficiencies, but hyperthyroidism is the result when the deficiencies become more severe.
Hypers: Everything that I've experienced myself, seen in others, and read about in scientific studies indicates that the primary deficiencies involved in hyperthyroidism are copper and iron. The balance between copper and zinc seems to be critically important in determining the rate of thyroid hormone production. Copper slows down the thyroid while zinc increases thyroid action. Copper should be supplemented first and if zinc is presently being supplemented it should be discontinued for two to three weeks or until the thyroid slows down. Copper absorption and utilization is increased by molybdenum and the B-complex vitamins, including extra biotin and PABA. Zinc is essential for health but excess amounts may increase thyroid hormone production. You will have to experiment to determine how much zinc you can take. Try to maintain a zinc/copper ratio of about 3:1 to 5:1 at first.
Most hypers and hypos are deficient in iron. Iron may be low because of insufficient intake or deficiencies of minerals such as manganese, copper, or cobalt (vitamin B-12), or B vitamins, which are essential for iron utilization. Copper and iron work together to form hemoglobin and need to be supplemented together. Supplementing with either alone can lead to a deficiency of the other.
Studies show that a deficiency of selenium usually causes a decrease in the conversion of T4 to T3. However under abnormal conditions, a deficiency of selenium can cause the body to increase conversion of T4 to T3 which can lead to higher levels of T3. Selenium is very important for normal thyroid function. Start by taking 100 micrograms per day and gradually increase up to 300 micrograms.
All of the supplements listed are necessary either to correct the underlying causes of hyperthyroidism or to supplement nutrients which are used up by the hyper metabolism.
HYPOS: Many nutrient deficiencies may cause hypothyroidism. The two main nutrients which may be deficient are selenium and zinc. Selenium may become deficient if there are excessive amounts of toxic metals being ingested, such as mercury from silver Amalgam
dental fillings. The more mercury or other toxic metals ingested, the more selenium you'll need. Start with 200 micrograms of selenium and work up to 400 micrograms. You may need more selenium if you have many Amalgam
fillings. The B-complex vitamins, especially B-6, facilitate zinc metabolism. Also the amino acid L-cysteine is important in zinc metabolism. Iron, manganese, and chromium are often deficient in hypos. Some hypos may be so deficient in minerals that they are close to becoming hyper. If you are experiencing nighttime rapid heart beat, then you are close and should also supplement with copper.
PROTEIN, FAT, AND CARBOHYDRATE
Research studies show that animals fed low protein and/or low fat diets with adequate calories will become hyperthyroid. Low calorie diets with proper ratios of protein and fat tend to make animals hypothyroid. In other words, a diet high in carbohydrates and low in protein and fats will cause an increased production of thyroid hormones and a feeling of higher energy levels. However, the increased energy levels and activity without adequate protein and fat in the diet will cause the body to cannibalize the body's fat and protein stores and may lead to hyperthyroidism.
Studies also seem to show that liver disease such as cirrhosis or hepatitis and pancreatic disease such as pancreatitis interfere with protein and fat digestion and may therefore lead to hyperthyroidism. As of Feb. 23, 1999, I am studying this to determine how to restore the health of the liver and pancreas. It appears that a high protein and high fat diet along with digestive enzymes, PABA, and phosphatidylcholine (along with the other recommended supplements) may be the best way to heal the liver and pancreas. I have just begun this part of the investigation, so hopefully I'll know more soon.
Sam Queen, author of the book, Chronic Mercury Toxicity, told me that autoimmune diseases, such as Grave's disease, are caused by low protein intake or inadequate protein digestion. I am looking for further information on this theory also.
Many foods and supplements which lower blood lipids and which would be recommended for lowering cholesterol (low density lipoproteins or LDLs) seem to have an adverse effect on hypers. It's possible that hypers need to consume more LDLs and avoid all lipid lowering foods such as garlic. This is contrary to most health advice, but hyperthyroidism seems to be a condition where the metabolism is opposite to that found in the majority of people and the opposite approach is needed.
SPECIFIC FOODS THAT MAY HELP
HYPERS: Radish, especially daikon; horseradish; carrots and carrot juice; cruciferous vegetables.
SPECIFIC FOODS AND SUPPLEMENTS WHICH MAY HURT
HYPERS: Any lipid (fat) lowering food or supplement, such as: garlic; ginseng; octacosanol; or other body-building supplements which are commonly used to lose fat.
TOXIC HEAVY METALS
There is a possibility that toxic heavy metals play a causative role in thyroid disease. Several of the group members who have had hair analyses done have high levels of mercury, aluminum, and other metals and also low sodium/potassium (Na/K) ratio. It appears that toxic metals may disrupt the Na/K ratio and thereby interfere with cellular absorption of essential nutrients. This hypothesis is also under investigation.
Sam Queen states that toxic metals are excreted from the body along with bile which is produced in the liver. Sufficient dietary fat is essential for bile production. He states that dairy fat works better than fat found in meat and recommends the consumption of 2-4 ounces
of butter a day. I think that 4-6 ounces
of high fat cheese such as cheddar would be equivalent.
I found that sunshine seemed to help me and other people may have had similar experiences. During my recovery (after I started taking copper), whenever I would spend some time in the sun I would feel better the next day. Recently I’ve read about a hormone called soltriol which is produced in the skin under the influence of sunshine. One researcher states that it affects many hormone-producing tissues, including the thyroid. We know that the sun helps the skin produce vitamin D, which is really a hormone rather than a vitamin. Soltriol is a second, separate hormone produced by the sun and I intend to research this to see how it is involved in thyroid problems.
We know that copper is used by the body to produce melanin, which is the dark pigment which colors the skin and protects against sun damage. PABA seems to be involved in this metabolism and this is the reason that many sunscreens contain PABA. My present theory is that sunshine on a person who is deficient in copper and/or PABA will result in an increase in those deficiencies and therefore may become more likely to get hyperT. However, sunshine on a person who is getting an adequate amount of copper and PABA may be very beneficial in helping the person recover from hyperT. This is just my theory, but if this is true then we could expect that persons who become more sensitive to the sun and who burn more easily may be copper deficient and therefore likely to develop hyperT.
LIST OF SUPPLEMENTS
Thyroid conditions, especially hyperthyroidism, are characterized by serious nutritional deficiencies. The following list of supplements helped me and others to recover from hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism and are important to correct the nutritional deficiencies which seem to cause these thyroid conditions. All of these nutrients have been shown to be essential for human life. While hypos may do well by selecting a good multiple vitamin/mineral supplement and adding to it as necessary, hypers have found it necessary to obtain these supplements singly so that the ratios can be changed as needed and so that certain minerals like manganese and Iodine
can be avoided until the body can once again tolerate these. This list is not intended as a "buffet" from which you can pick and choose. I consider each nutrient listed here important and possibly necessary for improving the thyroid diseases.
(Increases estrogen which suppresses thyroid function.)
HYPERS: 3-6 mg per day.
HYPOS: Probably don't need extra, unless estrogen is low. Usually hypos have high estrogen and low progesterone and testosterone.
CALCIUM and MAGNESIUM
(Regulates heart rate and builds bone.)
HYPERS: Take with magnesium, 1:1 ratio to suppress "thyroid storms. HyperT interferes with calcium metabolism and promotes osteoporosis, so take at least 1000 mg each of calcium and magnesium.
HYPOS: Take cal/mag in a 2:1 ratio, as needed, perhaps 600/300 mg.
(Involved in glucose metabolism and insulin production. The conversion of T4 to T3 is influenced by insulin, which is probably the reason why diabetics have low thyroid function.)
HYPERS: 200 mcg per day.
HYPOS: 400 mcg per day.
(Copper seems to be the most important mineral for hypers to take. Copper deficiency has been shown to cause elevated levels of thyroid hormones. It is also essential for monoamine oxidase production which degrades hormones after they have fulfilled their function. Take on full stomach, since it may produce nausea at first.)
HYPERS: 6-10 mg per day. Copper is the most important mineral for hyperT, so take copper first.
HYPOS: 0-3 mg per day. Hypos may have excess copper which is suppressing the thyroid.
(Kelp) (Most essential mineral for thyroid hormone production--deficiency of Iodine
and/or selenium causes goiter, a swelling of the thyroid gland. A goiter is the body’s attempt to increase the production of thyroid hormones from an inadequate supply of nutrients. Replenishing those nutrients will enable the body to resorb the goitrous tissue and allow the thyroid to return to its normal size.)
HYPERS: Don't take Iodine
or kelp until copper is built up. In cases of goiter, supplementing with iodine with insufficient selenium will make the goiter worse. Once copper has been supplemented for awhile, test with one kelp tablet. If hyper symptoms are not increased, gradually increase the kelp up to 6 tablets per day.
HYPOS: Start with one table per day and build up slowly to 6 tablets per day.
(Iron is a critical mineral, because while it is very necessary and often low in thyroid disease, iron intake without a corresponding intake of copper can deplete copper. Iron works with copper to build hemoglobin, so therefore too much of either can deplete the other. Usually in hyperthyroidism, copper is deficient and has to be built up first. Once it is replenished, iron supplementation with the copper (probably in a ratio of no more than 5:1, iron:copper) will then help both minerals get built up. If hyper symptoms increase, stop or reduce the iron.) In hypothyroidism, iron is probably more deficient than copper and so should be supplemented first. Once iron is built up then a small amount (2-3 mg) of copper can be added. Iron increases body temperature by increasing norepinephrine and increasing cellular oxygen, which helps the low body temperature problem in hypothyroidism. Iron is known as the strength mineral.)
HYPERS: After copper has been supplemented for a few days, try a small amount of iron. Gradually increase to about 18 mg.
HYPOS: Take 18-36 mg per day.
(Lithium, sodium, and potassium are important components in the cellular pumps that transport minerals and amino acids across cell membranes. A deficiency of lithium may cause the mineral and amino acid deficiencies we see in hyperthyroidism. Studies have indicated that manic- Depression
may develop from a lithium deficiency (hyperthyroidism is associated with manic-depression) and some psychiatric patients get hyperthyroidism when lithium treatment is abruptly ended. Limiting sodium and potassium intake for hypers seems important in helping correct the imbalance that may be the result of a lithium deficiency. It also appears that hypos may need more sodium and potassium and perhaps less lithium. As of 7-3-99 I am studying lithium and its relationship to sodium and potassium and hope to be able to add more information to this soon. Lithium is available as a supplement called lithium orotate from
in a 120 mg dosage. Most nutrition books including the Nutrition Almanac do not even mention lithium, so I’ve been unable to find any information on a reasonable amount for supplementation.. Because hyperT is associated with an abrupt termination of lithium supplementation, be careful.)
HYPERS: Lithium orotate 120 mg. My best guess is to take one or two a day. (I am presently trying to determine what the proper dosage. I’ve taken up to four a day without any immediate noticeable effects.) It may be beneficial to limit sodium and potassium intake until lithium is replenished.
HYPOS: Avoid. Ensure adequate intake of sodium and potassium.
(While calcium is involved in muscle contraction, magnesium is necessary for muscle relaxation. With inadequate magnesium, muscles will cramp and the heart muscles will not go through a complete relaxation phase, resulting in incomplete heart cycles and irregular heart rhythm. Essential for thyroid function and appears deficient in both hypos and hypers. Magnesium is the best mineral for quick relief of rapid or irregular heart beat. Seems to need calcium and boron for best absorption and utilization. Toxicity is reported to be very low since the kidneys can eliminate up to 60 grams per day.)
HYPERS: Take as needed to control rapid and irregular heart rate. You may require 1000-2000 mgs per day.
HYPOS: Generally take one half as much magnesium as calcium. However, if taking zinc and other minerals results in rapid or irregular heart beat, take magnesium (and calcium and boron) to relieve these symptoms. 300-400 mgs per day is the recommended amount for healthy persons.
(Assists iron metabolism and plays a role in the production of thyroid hormone. The hair analyses of both hypers and hypos show that most are deficient in manganese and chromium. These two minerals work together. Manganese is an essential mineral for the formation of thyroid hormone, so hypers are unlikely to be deficient. It's conceivable that a manganese deficiency could cause goiter and hypothyroidism. Manganese should not be taken by hypers without also taking copper and iron. I believe that manganese and chromium should be taken together and too much of one or the other may disrupt the balance between the two. It’s possible that once copper is built up, the body will tolerate more manganese and chromium and these two minerals are probably essential for complete recovery from thyroid disease.)
HYPERS: Probably not needed but if hair analysis shows low manganese, try 5-10 mg per day. Make sure copper and iron are supplemented before manganese is started. If hyper symptoms are experienced, suspect manganese or zinc.
HYPOS: Take 10-30 mg per day. Try to take about the same amount of manganese as iron.
(Sept. 17, 2000. My thinking is changing on molybdenum because of a recent report of a hyper who experienced an increase in heart rate after taking molybdenum. While there is some indication that molybdenum might work with copper, there is other indications that tungsten works more with copper and molybdenum is a tungsten antagonist. Please be aware that this is pure speculation since there is next to no information available on this, but I suspect that molybdenum might be more helpful for hypos than hypers. The reason for this thinking is that copper slows thyroid function and molybdenum can decrease copper (possibly by helping utilization?). There are studies indicating that high molybdenum intake in cattle can cause a copper deficiency. Because of conflicting information, my best suggestion is to experiment with molybdenum to see if it helps. Don't take more than 500 mcg at a time. It's very likely that if you do have a molybdenum deficiency it might get corrected by a very small amount, such as (1) 500 mcg. per day for 2-3 weeks. Please let me know your experiences.
HYPERS: Try 250-500 mcg per day. If molybdenum causes increased heart rate or is not low in hair analysis, don't take it.
HYPOS: Try 250-500 mcg per day to see if it helps.
Potassium is critical for proper thyroid and heart function. Hypers and hypos seem to often have low potassium levels. There is a condition called hypokalemic periodic paralysis which affects hypers in which potassium levels get really low and the person's muscles lock up. They can become paralyzed and have heart failure from this. This low potassium condition can be corrected with potassium supplementation. My personal experience is that when you have tremors, shaking, or fast or irregular heart rate (heart skipping beats) and magnesium doesn't correct the problem within a few hours, try taking 400-600 mgs of potassium (or eat bananas and/or potatoes). If potassium is the problem, then the tremors and irregular heart rate should correct within 30-60 minutes. I believe that everyone with a thyroid condition should have a bottle of 99 mg potassium with you at all times for emergency use. Magnesium and sodium can deplete potassium, so be aware of this if you are using supplemental magnesium. While the Nutrition Almanac suggests that we need a minimum of 2000 mgs of potassium a day, I think it's better to try to get 3000-4000 mgs a day.
HYPERS: Often low. Have hair analysis to be sure. Try 400-600 mgs when you have tremors or fast or irregular heart rate. Make sure your diet has adequate potassium by eating bananas, potatoes, or other potassium foods. If you are on a low carbohydrate diet (no bananas, potatoes, etc.) you may need to supplement with 1200 or more mgs of potassium daily. I think it's better to get your potassium from foods though.
HYPOS: Same as hypers.
(The essential mineral component of 5'-deiodinase enzymes which convert the prohormone T4 to the cellular active hormone T3. Deficiency of selenium will cause "low T3 Syndrome" where T4 levels are normal but T3 is low. Selenium and/or iodine deficiencies cause goiter. Selenium is the most important mineral to counter the toxic effects of heavy metals. Selenium is essential for production of glutathione peroxidase which is one of the three most important antioxidant defenses of the body. Can be toxic at levels of over 1000 mcg per day. Goiter will result from a selenium deficiency (or iodine deficiency), and many hypers and hypos have goiter.)
*Note July 4, 2001: A recent study indicates that selenium in the form of selenomethionine is not absorbed as well as selenium from foods. I have used selenomethionine consistently throughout my recovery and feel that it must work. However, if you suspect that you are not getting enough selenium from your selenomethionine supplement, you may want to try a yeast-based selenium. Some people are concerned, as I was, that excess yeast may not be good, especially if they have candida. I believe that candida will respond to correcting iron-deficiency anemia and that a yeast-based selenium might be worth trying even if you have candida. I have been trying a yeast-based selenium for a few weeks and haven't noticed much difference. However, you may want to experiment with both forms to see which works better for you.
HYPERS: Take 200-600 mcg per day. If you have a known high level of mercury or other toxic metal, consider taking more. Start at 100 mcg and work up slowly.
HYPOS: Take 200-600 mcg of selenium per day. Mercury in silver Amalgam
fillings uses up selenium for detoxification. High amounts of amalgam fillings may require more selenium. Don't take over 600 mcg. per day unless you have an unusually large amount of amalgam fillings (more than 8).
(Supplement known as silica, from the plant horsetail. Assists collagen formation and seems to have thyroid function. Helps to antagonize aluminum which may cause copper excretion and hyperthyroidism.)
HYPERS: Take 2 per day. One information source recommends taking rests from this supplement, like 3 days on, then 2 days off. I've used it every day for about a year with no negative symptoms.
HYPOS: Same as Hypers.
(Next to nothing is known about silver and the thyroid, but my guess is that there is some connection. Silver is just below copper in the Periodic Table and therefore has similar chemical properties. Copper and zinc have electrical properties and can be used to make a battery. Silver has similar but better electrical conductivity properties than copper, so there is the possibility that it is important for the same reasons copper is. I took Colloidal Silver
during my recovery from hyperthyroidism, but have been unable to ascertain if it was important in the healing process or not. I can at least say that it didn’t hurt. My suggestion is to take 5 drops of Colloidal Silver
per day whether you are hyper or hypo.)
HYPERS: 5 Drops of Colloidal Silver
(Supplement known at MSM--methylsulfanylmethane. Works with copper in many functions and may get depleted with copper supplementation. Deficiency causes aches in joints and muscles.)
HYPERS: After copper and iron are built up, start MSM (or when joints get sore.) Common supplement amounts are 1000-3000 mg.
HYPOS: Take 1000-3000 mg.
(Contains small amounts of all minerals. May be important in supplying unknown necessary trace elements. Ionized form best, colloidal form second best. Trace elements can also be obtained from seafoods.)
HYPERS: Supplement with recommended amount unless the iodine,
manganese, or zinc content increase hyper symptoms. If so, take sporadically. If you can't tolerate this at all, take copper and molybdenum until copper is built up and then re-try.
HYPOS: Take recommended amount.
(I am still researching this, but vanadium seems to be involved in thyroid function. High vanadium levels have been found in the hair of manic/depressives. This means it may be a thyroid stimulant. Available as a supplement, vanadyl sulfate.)
HYPERS: Avoid. I am pretty sure hypers should never take vanadium. Whenever I've used it I've had increased hyper symptoms.
HYPOS: Unknown. There are reports that a vanadium deficiency is a part of diabetes and since many hypothyroids have either diabetes or hypoglycemia, it's possible that hypos are deficient. From my experience I feel vanadium stimulates the thyroid, but I would be very careful with this until more is known.
(Works with copper, but also may increase thyroid function. This mechanism is unknown, but zinc may spare selenium because it also detoxifies heavy metals. May increase progesterone production, which stimulates thyroid hormone production. The optimum zinc to copper ratio is about 8:1, but hypers need a lower ratio and hypos a higher ratio. Take on full stomach since it may cause nausea. Take in morning as it may keep you awake if taken at night.)
HYPERS: After copper and iron are built up some, try a small amount of zinc. If tolerated take one to five milligrams of zinc per milligram of copper. If hyper symptoms increase, suspect zinc and reduce amount taken. Premenopausal women may find it better to supplement zinc during the first half of the month and use less or no zinc during the second half.
HYPOS: Take 30-100 mg of zinc to increase thyroid production. If rapid heart beat is felt at night or early morning, decrease zinc.
A and D
(From fish oil. Usual capsules contain 10,000 IU of A and 400 IU of D. There is some evidence indicating that excessive amounts of vitamin D, possibly only the synthetic form added to foods, may be a problem. A study on rats showed that vitamin A deficiency causes hypothyroidism. Hypos have difficulty converting beta carotene to vitamin A, so supplement with a preformed vitamin A, such as from fish oil.)
HYPERS: Take 1-3 capsule per day. Get adequate amounts of sunshine. Several hypers have reported benefits from carrot juice. Hypers have an increased rate of conversion of beta carotene to vitamin A.
HYPOS: 1-3 capsules per day.
(Vitamins usually included in B-complex will be listed separately. Some people may have to take individual B vitamins, while most may have to supplement extra B vitamins to the B-complex. It appears that the best way to get the B vitamins is to take a B-complex supplement (50 mg) with extra biotin (up to 1000 mcg) and extra PABA (up to 500 mg).
HYPERS: Take one or two 50 mg B-complex per day.
HYPOS: Same as Hypers.
B-1 (Thiamine. Believed essential for copper and sulfur metabolism. Also appears important for correcting eye involvement in Grave's. Many drugs including alcohol and tobacco destroy B-1 and I believe this is the mechanism by which these drugs increase the frequency of Grave's and eye involvement.)
HYPERS: Up to 200 mg or more.
HYPOS: Up to 100 mg or more or taken in B-complex.
B-2 (Riboflavin. Believed essential for copper metabolism. Feelings of eye irritation or the sensation of grit under the eyelids indicates B-2 deficiency.)
HYPERS: 100-200 mg.
HYPOS: 100 mg or taken in B-complex.
B-3 (Niacin. Niacinamide is in most multiples. Niacin is a serotonin precursor, which calms and counters the catecholamine hormones which produce feelings of fear and anxiety. Niacin may be better than niacinamide but causes flushing and requires adaptation. If you've never taken niacin before, be aware that you could get a total body flush which makes you hot and itchy all over. It is not dangerous, but many people have gone to the hospital emergency room convinced that they were in real trouble. To minimize the flush, take on a full stomach and start with 25 mg. at a time, before increasing it.)
HYPERS: Take 100-200 mg a day.
HYPOS: Take 100 mg a day.
B-5 (Pantothenic Acid. May be involved in copper metabolism. Important for adrenal health.)
HYPERS: 100-500 mg.
HYPOS: 100-200 mg.
B-6 (Pyridoxine. Essential for zinc deficiency. Hypos are usually deficient in zinc and B-6. Helps regulate sodium/potassium balance which is disturbed in thyroid diseases and helps prevent water retention in the extremities. Sodium/potassium balance controls the transport of essential nutrients into the cells. If you feel pain in the wrist--carpal tunnel syndrome--take extra B-6 and zinc.)
HYPERS: You may not want to take this at first to prevent excess zinc metabolism and possible hyper symptoms, but later, you’ll need to take this to balance your B vitamins.
HYPOS: Take 100-200 mg.
B-12 (Contains cobalt so your levels can be judged by cobalt levels on your hair analysis. Facilitates iron metabolism and for treatment of anemia. May deplete iron if taken without iron. If iron supplementation causes adverse reactions and copper levels are adequate, suspect a B-12 deficiency. B-12 is destroyed in the stomach by stomach acid, so coated B-12 is needed to get it into the intestines for absorption. The sublingual tablets are not as good.)
HYPERS: Probably don't need extra B-12. Amount in B-complex is adequate.
HYPOS: Very likely deficient. Supplement with 1000-5000 mcg.
BIOFLAVONOIDS, RUTIN, QUERCETIN. Many people with thyroid disease, particularly hyperthyroidism, have bleeding gums, a condition which doesn’t respond to the usual vitamin C therapy that most health books recommend. Other nutrients often recommended for bleeding gums include bioflavonoids, rutin, and quercetin. It’s quite possible that these facilitate collagen formation and may be very important for copper utilization. If this is true then they may be very important in correcting thyroid conditions and care should be taken to eat a high percentage of raw foods and to supplement these nutrients.
HYPERS: Take amounts as directed on bottle.
CHOLINE and INOSITOL
(Plays an important role in glutathione production. Choline deficiency affects males and females differently and this indicates that it may play a vital role in thyroid diseases.)
HYPERS: Take 500 mg each of choline and inositol.
HYPOS: Same as hypers.
(Essential for metabolism of branched chain amino acids and may be involved in copper metabolism.)
HYPERS: Take 500-1000 mcg per day. Amount in B-complex is inadequate.
HYPOS: Same as Hypers.
(Found to be low in hypers but normal in hypos, CoQ10 protects the heart from damage which may occur in hyperthyroidism. It's possible, but unknown whether CoQ10 will help hypers.)
HYPERS: Take up to 90 mg per day.
HYPOS: Probably don't need it unless heart problems exist, then same as hypers
(May have thyroid functions. Hypers have been found to have adequate levels, but I haven't found information about hypos yet.)
HYPERS: 400 mcg per day. Don't take more than this.
HYPOS: 400 mcg per day.
(May be important for thyroid health, but is most likely essential for normal eye health. Since most people with hyperthyroidism have eye problems like dry and itchy eyes, lutein is probably very important. Lutein may be extremely important for those with thyroid eye disease (TED).
HYPERS: 2-3 capsules per day.
HYPOS: unknown, experiment to see if it helps.
(PABA appears to have very wide-ranging benefits for thyroid diseases and for many diseases associated with thyroid diseases. Seems to be a key vitamin that enables copper to be utilized properly. Reports state that excessive amounts may cause nausea, diarrhea, or skin rash, but I believe these symptoms won't occur if PABA is taken with an adequate amount of copper.)
HYPERS: Take 200-500 mg per day. Take in proportion to the copper you are using.
HYPOS: Take 200 mg a day.
(Important source of choline which comes from lecithin and which is recommended as the best supplement to help correct cirrhosis of the liver and to promote liver health. The liver is a key organ for conversion of T4 to T3 and also for the production of bile to eliminate heavy metals like mercury which interrupt enzyme and endocrine function.)
HYPERS: Take (2) 1200 mg capsules a day
HYPOS: Same as hypers.
(Vitamin C is a very important vitamin but our society may be overly concerned with getting enough of it. Many foods are supplemented with vitamin C and many people take large amounts to ward off colds and other perceived health threats. When I got hyperthyroidism, I was taking 10 GRAMS of vitamin C a day. I now realize that this was excessive and have cut the amount way down. I now believe that excessive amounts of vitamin C may be a real problem for people with thyroid disease, especially hypers. Lately I've been seeing that deficiencies of antioxidants may be a cause of thyroid disease. I recently ran across a study which showed that cu,zn-superoxide dismutase (SOD) which is one of the main antioxidants of the body, is decreased by vitamin C. This may occur because vitamin C is also an antioxidant and may be taking up some of the free radical scavenging jobs that SOD normally performs. However, we have seen that hypers experience worse hyper symptoms with larger amounts of vitamin C, and there are studies which indicate that high amounts of vitamin C interfere with copper absorption. These facts lead me to think that high amounts of vitamin C may be a contributory cause of lower levels of SOD and thereby contributing to hyperthyroidism. Also, vitamin C interferes with calcium absorption which is another problem that hypers have. I recommend taking a very low amount of vitamin C, if any, especially for hypers. Whether hypos need more is something I'm going to look into.
HYPERS: Take no more than 500 mg per day. You might want to experiment with taking none or 100-200 mg to see what happens.
HYPOS: Unknown, but limit intake to 1000 mg until more is known.
(See vitamin A.)
(Assists estrogen production, works with selenium, and has other thyroid functions. Because vitamin E assists selenium metabolism, it is quite likely that excess amounts will deplete selenium. I recommend that you don't take more than 100 IU per day. Since vitamin E accumulates in the body, it doesn't matter if you take 100 IU per day for four days or 400 IU once every four days.)
HYPERS: 100 IU per day. Not more.
HYPOS: 100 IU per day.
(Works with boron to increase estrogen production. Take yogurt occasionally to assist production. Probably unnecessary to take a supplement since intestinal bacteria can make it.)
ALPHA LIPOIC ACID
(A powerful antioxidant which is a lipid and water soluble thiol which has been shown to protect the body from cadmium toxicity.)
HYPERS: 100-300 mgs. per day
(Probably the most important amino acid to supplement for hypos. Key precursor to both glutathione and the deiodinase enzymes which convert T4 to T3. Assists zinc utilization, so it may be more important for hypos than hypers. Currently under study.)
HYPERS: Unknown. Currently studying.
HYPOS: Take 500-1000 mg per day.
(Precursor to the thyroid hormones and the catecholamines.)
HYPERS: Don't supplement.
HYPOS: Take 500 mg per day.
(Precursor to tyrosine.)
HYPERS: Don't supplement.
HYPOS: Still researching.
(Precursor to niacin and serotonin. Serotonin is the inhibitory (calming) hormone which counters the catecholamines (stimulating hormones which produce anxiety and fear.) High intake reduces the uptake of tyrosine. Studies have shown that hyperthyroidism can be induced in animals by a low tryptophan diet. Eating adequate amounts of protein should ensure that you get adequate amounts of tryptophan. If hyperthyroidism is severe or doesn't respond to anything else, you may want to try tryptophan. Pure L-tryptophan is unavailable except through a doctor's prescription, but health food stores are now carrying a metabolite of tryptophan which may work as well.)
HYPERS: May be beneficial.
HYPOS: Probably not necessary.
BRANCHED CHAIN AMINO ACIDS (BCAAs)
(Leucine, isoleucine, and valine. Compete with tyrosine for absorption, so increasing BCAAs may decrease tyrosine absorption and thereby decrease production of the thyroid and catecholamine hormones.)
HYPERS: Beneficial, especially for exercise, sports, and body building. Does not seem to cause hyper symptoms like other protein supplements.
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