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 Post subject: Hypothyroid/Hashimoto's
PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2013 7:24 pm 
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Tofu Pup

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Does anyone have experience successfully addressing hypothyroidism and Hashimoto's with medication, supplements while still being on a vegan diet? Essentially with Hashimoto's the standard thing to do is to go on a paleo-like diet. I've had a doctor tell me I'd waste my money trying to go to him if I refuse to eat chicken or fish. I need to get blood work done to get diagnosed with my underlying conditions (I have hypo, suspect Hashimoto's as it runs in my family, and because of my symptoms I suspect I may also have either Cushings or PCOS on top of it), it's getting very difficult because I don't have insurance and am broke partially because my symptoms have gotten so bad that they are interfering with my current work and my ability to find new, additional work or a full time job and partly because I took out expensive loans to get an art degree (not the greatest decision I suppose). I can barely function at all and I really, really, really don't want to eat meat. I have cut out gluten, all soy except for tempeh (some sources online have said fermented soy is ok, some say it's not), almost all sugar, I still eat beans, occasionally raw kale, some nightshades, seeds, and other things that are on the "do not eat" lists for those with hypo/hashimoto's, because I would basically have nothing left to subsist on. I'm hoping there's someone on here who is somehow maintaining a vegan diet, on their meds, taking their vitamins and doesn't suffer from extreme weight gain, fatigue, depression, forgetfulness or a foggy brain. Is it possible? I'm getting desperate.


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 Post subject: Re: Hypothyroid/Hashimoto's
PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:44 pm 
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Shopped till she dropped
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I know it's not what you want to hear, but if your symptoms are so bad that you can't function, you really should reconsider your decision to be vegan right now. On this forum, we will often suggest that people with failing health do whatever they have to do to be healthy. If it means eating animal products, so be it. Ultimately, your health is more important. Veganism will always be waiting when you are better.

It might be worth getting a second opinion and doing a little research on your own. Check out this blog post by Chef Amber Shea, who has Hashi's and is hypo. I didn't poke around her site too much, but she's been working with a doctor who is very supportive of her veganism. Her doctor studied under Dr. Kharrazian, author of the Thyroid Book, which has a lot of good information on how to address Hashi's with diet. If you do follow Chef Amber's vegna Hashi's diet, be sure to take some sort of protein powder. The autoimmune diet basically eliminates all the usual vegan forms of protein. There's some good info in this thread on The Kind Life as well.

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 Post subject: Re: Hypothyroid/Hashimoto's
PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2013 11:13 pm 
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Not a creepy cheese pocket person
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I'd find a better doctor. I've had Hashimoto's for a few decades, and I've never had an endo suggest I can't be vegan or even that I need to modify my diet other than taking my medication on an empty stomach. I've asked several times and the answer has always been that so long as my diet is relatively constant, that it's not an issue. My last TSH was .3. I have found I do better on synthroid than generic meds. I honestly think most special thyroid diets are bunk, not science-based, and mostly designed to sell books and make money. Remember, the paleo diet is just a few years old. It's a fad.

What medications are you taking? How have your levels measured? Have you had an ultrasound?

I hope I'm not sounding unsympathetic. The symptoms can be absolutely devastating, and I can believe that it's affecting your ability to work. But a paleo diet is absolutely not conventional treatment. I do agree with kara kara that your health should come before veganism. But you should base that choice on sound medical advice, not Internet research.


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 Post subject: Re: Hypothyroid/Hashimoto's
PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2013 11:33 pm 
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Because Bob Barker Told Me To
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Listen to Mollyjade. Where do you live? We need to find you a good local vegan doctor or other vegan resources. I'm not sure if Dr. Michael Greger has addressed this in his daily videos, or if PCRM has addressed it directly either, but they would be good places to start. If you need help getting in contact with either, let me know.

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 Post subject: Re: Hypothyroid/Hashimoto's
PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2013 11:41 pm 
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So, the supplement I take to control my hashis is about an un-vegan as possible and coming from my favorite animal of all, so it sucks. But, my hashis has been more or less under control for a few years now, all the while I have been otherwise vegan, so I am highly skeptical of any paleo claims and really cannot wait for the paleo bandwagon to pull up its hitches and leave town.


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 Post subject: Re: Hypothyroid/Hashimoto's
PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2013 11:45 pm 
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Because Bob Barker Told Me To
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~Sz wrote:
So, the supplement I take to control my hashis is about an un-vegan as possible and coming from my favorite animal of all, so it sucks. But, my hashis has been more or less under control for a few years now, all the while I have been otherwise vegan, so I am highly skeptical of any paleo claims and really cannot wait for the paleo bandwagon to pull up its hitches and leave town.

This sounds reasonable too; I'm all for the 'most good/least harm' path, and if all other options are exhausted, do what you need to do for yourself.

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Formerly Kaleicious. I still love kale, but no more than lots of other garden greens too! Orach is currently my favorite.


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 Post subject: Re: Hypothyroid/Hashimoto's
PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2013 2:55 am 
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Bathes in Braggs
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I just recently switched from 75 to 100 mg again and its all a mess, but no one ever said I shouldnt and couldnt be vegan. To be honest, it has helped me & my mind to not listen to people on hashimoto's internet message boards because they're all so panicky, I dont find it helpful at all. And they really love non-science based advice...

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 Post subject: Re: Hypothyroid/Hashimoto's
PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2013 3:31 am 
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Not NOT A Furry
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It's not that you eat a bunch of thyroid glands on paleo diet...

I have hypothyroidism, antibodies were negative when I tested them.

The endocrinologist that was replacing mine for one of my appointments said I'd have to start eating meat again. I said "No chance!". Then he measured my blood pressure, it was elevated, otherwise it's always normal when they measure it. Then he asked if I get annoyed a lot, and I said "Well, when you demand that I eat meat!". Then he asked me why I don't eat meat and after I answered said I didn't have to eat meat again. I guess he didn't want to cause me the silent killer...

Of course, I take T4.


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 Post subject: Re: Hypothyroid/Hashimoto's
PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2013 10:35 am 
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I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism more than twenty years ago and my doctor's never said anything about me being vegan impacting my thyroid stuff. She said my levels are fine (I take, I think, Synthroid or Levothyroxine or sumpin', every morning). I remember before I was diagnosed, I was in a deep depression and slept all the time but have been fine since I started thyroid supplements. Sorry you're struggling. Once I got on meds, everything righted itself and other than adjusting my medication dosage from time to time, my doctor hasn't done anything else or said anything about vegan/hypothyroidism. I've been vegan for almost nine years now and notihng about it has impacted my thyroid in all this time, to my knowledge. My doctor knows about my veganism--in fact she's always giving me tofu recipes. I've never been diagnosed specifically with "Hashimoto's", just hypothyroidism. Honestly, I never pay attention to my thyroid or think about it beyond taking my daily dose of thyroid supplement since it seems to be under good control and hasn't bothered me since my early twenties--doctors have always seemed more concerned about it than I ever have. <3 Hope you can sort it out.

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 Post subject: Re: Hypothyroid/Hashimoto's
PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2013 11:27 am 
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Slept through a huge sale, OH NO!
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It is remarkable how untreated Hashi symptoms are so similar to depression. It makes me wonder if I was ever depressed at all, really, given how much better I feel emotionally now that my thyroid levels are more normal-ish, and that it went untreated for probably a few years.

It does require constant vigilance; I think I have my blood tested every four months? And it is vital to have both T3 and T4 checked, of course. My thyroid doctor thinks it is great that I am vegan and all my other levels are awesome, so he is like my #1 cheerleader always telling me to keep doing what I've been doing.

For my other health issues I have a nutritionist and an oncologist and they are both completely on board with my veganism as well.


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 Post subject: Re: Hypothyroid/Hashimoto's
PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2013 11:47 am 
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WELFARIST!
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~Sz wrote:
It is remarkable how untreated Hashi symptoms are so similar to depression. It makes me wonder if I was ever depressed at all, really, given how much better I feel emotionally now that my thyroid levels are more normal-ish, and that it went untreated for probably a few years.

Yeah, I mean, I get spells of depression like most everyone but they're manageable and I remain functional and it's nothing like the ongoing depression I had in my late teens/early twenties before my thyroid problems were diagnosed. Looking back, I totally think that particular depressive episode was, in fact, largely thyroid-related because I've never been that chronically or deeply depressed ever since being diagnosed and treated.

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 Post subject: Re: Hypothyroid/Hashimoto's
PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 6:37 pm 
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It has been suggested and not tested that I have Hashi. I am severely unstable Hypo-thyroid. It goes up, it goes down. I do better on unprocessed foods. I do fine if I eat Tofu, tempeh and such. I avoid soy until at least noon. I get bad when I get lazy and eat lots of tofurkey, boca nuggets, boca burgers etc.
I take Gaia Herbs Thyroid Support per my doctor. I am pending referral to an endo but my insurance is being a pain in the asparagus. I do best when I eat healthy, track my foods, exercise etc. But when I get lazy, I get bad really fast. I had a recent down swing and my synthroid is up to 175 a day.

Oh and everything I've seen says fish isn't so good for hypo thyroid...maybe I'm mistaken. I don't have my saved link from years ago when I was first researching diet fixing my thyroid instability. There was a whole list of foods to avoid and to eat like a ton. I remember Broccoli was another one to avoid and I die if I don't eat Broccoli. I truly feel crappy if I don't eat it, so I take that stuff with a grain of salt and know that my body is weird and I have to listen to what it tells me to do.

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 Post subject: Re: Hypothyroid/Hashimoto's
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 7:57 am 
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Tofu Pup

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It's definitely good to hear that there are people on here who have Hashi's and can mantain their diet. I can assure you that when the doctor told me that, without even meeting me, or before I even have a diagnosis, I immediately wrote him off as an option. I've since learned more about auto-immune disorders and the reasons that some people need to go on an extremely restrictive diet, it mostly seems to be while people are in an elimination diet phase, to figure out what is actually bothering their digestive system and thyroid. So I am very relieved to know that that is mostly temporary. I also was freaking out so much about what would happen if I do end up having Hashi's, that the stress was compounding my symptoms that I already have from my thyroid, so I've resolved to not assume the worst or try to preemptively change my diet when I don't even know for sure what's wrong yet, and just continue eating what I want and to just avoid the things that I already know make me feel sick (gluten, non-fermented soy, some grains).

I am on synthroid, but it's a very low dose. It worked for a long time and I felt pretty good, but over the last several months it has slowly stopped working and over the last 2 to 3 months my symptoms have just rapidly gotten worse and worse. Constantly groggy, lethargic, bouts of depression, that general gross/bloated feeling that probably just comes along with the constipation and your metabolism being non-existent. I've got an appointment with a free clinic at university and after that they should just refer me to an endocrinologist so I can get my meds readjusted and figure out what else is going on, hopefully. I hope I don't just run into the same dead end I ran into with my GP when I had insurance. I don't know why so many people with hypo seem to have problems with their GP's ignoring their symptons, doing the wrong kind of test and then dropping it there.

Does anyone have advice for what I should ask for during my appointment? I know I have to ask for more than just the obvious test they give you and ask for T3 and T4 levels to be checked. Anything else?


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 Post subject: Re: Hypothyroid/Hashimoto's
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 11:33 am 
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Not a creepy cheese pocket person
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If you're relatively newly diagnosed, it's not unusual that your dose would have to increase over time. This all sounds pretty normal. I wouldn't go into it your appointment expecting the doctor to screw up. Give them a chance to be good.


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 Post subject: Re: Hypothyroid/Hashimoto's
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 8:30 pm 
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woeisme wrote:

I also was freaking out so much about what would happen if I do end up having Hashi's, that the stress was compounding my symptoms that I already have from my thyroid, so I've resolved to not assume the worst or try to preemptively change my diet when I don't even know for sure what's wrong yet,


I have to say, I was pretty bummed when I was diagnosed Hashi's and I did a ton of reading and felt like it was the end of the world that I had a lifelong auto-immune disorder. But truly, being dx-ed and then treated, was awesome as I started feeling better almost immediately once I got on meds; I got renewed energy and felt real life improvement.


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 Post subject: Re: Hypothyroid/Hashimoto's
PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 10:56 am 
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Bathes in Braggs
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i went to the endo because i kept gaining weight & my hair was falling out. I was on 100 t4 +t3 and he said the t3 was pointless. so I switched to 75 t4 and waited to hear from him again. 2 months later he wrote that the dosage before had been fine. So I switched to 100 t4 again 2 weeks ago. And immediately the horrible hair loss started again. Now Im really confused. my gp said that my blood tests are important, but how i feel is just as important and now I feel shiitake, my hair is falling out and my skin is gross. And i keep gaining weight like crazy and Im already obese. Im so confused at the moment.

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"Money ain't got no owners, only spenders." - Omar


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 Post subject: Re: Hypothyroid/Hashimoto's
PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 1:52 pm 
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Not a creepy cheese pocket person
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Do you know your TSH level? Hair loss is definitely not acceptable.


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