Issue # 138 September 26, 2013
Welcome to KnowYourThyroid.
I hope everyone is well and enjoying the fall weather. Our weather has been perfect; warm days & cool nights.
Today, Tom Brimeyer is back to explain to us about T3. This is Part 3 of a series on thyroid medications.
Thyroid Medications: Part 3
By Tom Brimeyer
A lot of people don’t respond well to T3 or thyroid medications and supplements containing T3.
If you don’t, you’re not alone.
For many, using T3 can cause elevated heart rate, increased breathing, and feelings of stress and anxiety.
If you’ve ever experienced this then you know exactly what I’m talking about.
But the important thing to understand is that just because you can’t tolerate T3 (right now)…
…It doesn’t mean that you don’t need T3.
By far the biggest problem I’ve encountered with clients who have not been able to tolerate T3 is due to elevated stress hormone production.
Adrenaline in particular…
Because when you develop hypothyroidism, you tend to compensate by overproducing adrenaline.
And T3 tends to make you much more susceptible to the effects of adrenaline.
In other words, T3 will amplify the effects of adrenaline causing those symptoms of increased heart rate, anxiety, and other heightened symptoms.
This is one reason why you should never use T3 when you’re already in a stressed state.
I learned this lesson the hard way myself…
Years ago while I was experimenting with small amounts of T3, I was watching a rather intense football game.
I’ll admit it. I can really become enthralled by close games, especially when my team is on the losing end.
Forgetting to take the T3 earlier, I decided to take it right then and there.
Long story short, I had to turn the game off.
My heart was beating out of my chest and the anxiety of simply watching the game reached a whole new level.
Because the half-life of T3 is relatively short, it only lasted for part of the day.
But it goes to show you that even a small amount of T3 can really amplify the effects of adrenaline, when your stress hormones are high.
However it’s important to note that this can cause serious problems for those with preexisting heart conditions.
If you have a preexisting heart condition, only use T3 under your doctor’s direct care.
With that being said, here are some ways to improve your ability to tolerate T3…
[Disclaimer… If you are currently using a thyroid medication containing T3 then do not adjust or alter the use of your medication without first consulting with your doctor.]
1. Use smaller amounts more often.
Many doctors recommend using T3 just like T4, once a day.
Unless your T3 has a time-release component (which I don’t recommend) then you can absorb too much T3 at one time.
Your thyroid gland produces on the order of 4mcg of T3 per hour.
And I have had some clients who were taking 25mcg or more in a single dose!
No wonder they weren’t feeling well on it.
2. Always start small.
Anytime you introduce T3, it should be done in very small amounts.
T3 is very effective at helping to lower the stress response. But as mentioned above, if your stress hormones are high, it will amplify their effects.
When introduced properly in small amounts, it can then be increased accordingly as the stress response lowers.
Once your stress hormones are under control, you’ll be able to better tolerate the amount of T3 that is right for you.
3. Your diet is key.
There are many factors that affect your body’s response to stress.
Some are in your control and some are not.
You can’t control work deadlines or stressful personal matters.
But, when your body has the right nutrients and in the right amounts, and your hormones are properly regulated, you can become quite resistant to the effects of stress.
With the right diet, you can essentially stop the stress response before it even starts. Or you can at least minimize its effects.
Remember, stress hormones are very thyroid suppressive, so stopping the stress response is essential for regulating your thyroid.
This is why I focus so heavily on diet with my clients.
If you can’t stop the stress response, then you won’t get very far in your thyroid healing journey.
For most, diet is the missing piece of the puzzle. But unfortunately, what most are led to believe is a healthy diet is actually causing more harm to their thyroid.
I ran out of time, but we still need to discuss some of the common issues with Armour Thyroid and similar desiccate thyroid medications.
Sometimes the problem isn’t always you or your thyroid.
Sometimes the problem is in the medication itself.
To learn more from Tom, be sure to check out his program here.