My husband and I are both hypothyroid and we only eat gluten on rare occasions such as in a restaurant where we cannot avoid it. In our case we both have a food intolerance/food allergy to gluten and if we consume it we become what we call, "glutenized". In our case this means we become overly fatigued and foggy brained until the allergic reaction in our gut subsides. More people have food allergies like this than one would think. We never ever thought we had this and even argued against the blood test with our doc because we thought it was a waste of money.
Now we realize that food allergies and hypothyroidism are not really that different. They are both autoimmune type problems.
Gluten is mostly found in processed foods and in carbs, both of which we avoid for health and weight reasons too. It's hard enough to keep the weight off with hypo and we really don't want to add to the problem we already have. That's how it is for us. :)
Not sure where to start, so I'll begin two months ago.
I thought I was going to die.
I would be anxious and then I would be fatiugued, I had trouble getting out of bed. I also had trouble breathing.
I had been through several doctors. The latest put me on bio identical hormones, becuase my female hormones were a little low. He said that would take care of the anxiety. It didn't.
Being diagnosed with Hashimoto's 5 years ago not one told me about the symptoms that went with it. One after another told me I was hypo (limited lab work). None could explain the hypo/hyper combination symptoms.
A doctor I was interviewing for a documentary sent me Tamra's article.
It saved my life.
The first thing she told me was the connection between gluten and the thyroid. I went off immediately. Within a week I started to feel a little better. Within a month I lost 20 pounds.
The second thing she told was to contact a doctor that was trained under Dr K.
I called him. We spoke. He ordered a challenge test to determine if I was TH1 or TH2 dominate. I am TH2 dominate. I eliminated the TH1 stimulators that were also triggering my auto immune attacks.
From there he order me a supplement that would begin to balance my immune system. Once I began the supplement I started to piece my life back together.
The next two months were filled with a fast, cleanse and detox, which included an elimination diet to help determine additonal food allergies besides the gluten. I have now started adding foods back in.
My digestive system is very sensitive as a result of this disease. Gluten triggers inflamation, gut and neurological issues and pain.
I am a wife, a mother, a daughter, an aunt and a sister. For months I could not enjoy these roles.
I am three months into a gluten free diet and two months into Dr K's protocol and I am now participating in my life again.
Tamra, thank you. You helped me get my life back.
I appreciate your persistence in making the public aware of the link between gluten and auto immune, thyroid and health.
Being a documentary film maker I can tell you, even if one person out of one thousand listens, it is one person's life you have helped change.
Hi Stacy! Can you direct me where to go to read the article you talked about that changed your life by Tamraw? I found what you said to be very interesting and would like to learn a little more about the connection between thyroid and gluten. I do avoid gluten most of the times however I do eat small amounts of it when we eat out or maybe when a wonderful desert is within my reach but I was told by my doctor that I am probably alergic to gluten, based on all my symptons, and gave it a try and just could not believe how much better I felt. I have been running into some issue's with my vit B-12 level and thyroid is dropping each time I get a blood test. My T4 Tsh level went from 2.440 to 1.750 in 7 mos and the T4, free is at .97 which still seems to be in the normal range according to my lab but there are just so many symptoms that I have that I'm just curious about the connection to the gluten and thyroid. I am not on any med's but did start the B-12 shots last Friday for that also dipping real low.
As this board and others know, gluten has come a talked about theory attaching it to thyroid disease issues recently on many forums and conversation.
While there is information available that patients can research, many are still out on a verdict to the clinical research it took to put these two links together.
With a team of both professionals and patients, gathering up as much information as possible on the facts is needed to move forward in positive levels to get thyroid disease, in general - better understood. This design of research is on its way being conducted.
This poll's intention should be based only on personal stories on going gluten-free or not going gluten free and if any benefits were achieved as the topic of interest here.
i am hypothyroid and have celiacs disease and i am strugling with everyday life alot like some these life situations iv read about i feel like my life slipping away and i cant get it back one min im fine the next im sick or just not with it my hormones are going crazy..
Many people are now avoiding gluten in their diets as a hope that it will help with their thyroid disease. In my humble opinion if you have ancestry where there was no wheat or barley etc in the diet, you might find you have an intolerance, not a true allergen reaction. The genes don't recognise the gluten from these grains and tend to send out a message of a foreign matter in the body. This then can send up a whole gamut of symptoms to the person. Each person can have an individual reaction and symptoms.
Some reactions are swelly belly (as I call it!), headache, fatigue, constipation (or diahorrea), slight rash, brain fog, weight gain, dry skin, mood swings.
As you can see, they are very much like hypothyroidism...so it is a chicken and egg conundrum. Does not having gluten help you feel you have lost your hypo symptoms, or were there gluten intolerance symptoms to start with?
In my experience, I gave up gluten many, many, many years before I even started getting any thyroid disease. Once I got the thyroid disease, (and didn't know it for many years!) I was convinced I had Coeliac disease and had the biopsies, colonoscopies etc. All were negative. I thought perhaps I was ingesting gluten somehow in my foods, and re-read every label with a fine tooth comb. So for a lot of years was more paranoid about having gluten than an Obsessive compulsive washing their hands!
Once I was diagnosed with the thyroid disease, I had an Ah-ha! moment. It wasn't gluten, but hypothyroidism symptoms I was having. Which as you saw in the above, can be very similar in appearance! I still don't eat gluten, and can tell you, I am in a super hypo heck phase at present, and the symptoms are as if I am eating gluten all over again. (which of course, I am not!)
I feel that if you do have hypo symptoms, giving up gluten or even reducing your gluten intake, can help you to feel better. I don't believe you will get rid of your brain fog, or weight gain or whatever 100%, but I do feel it can help reduce them and allow you to feel better.
I gained a 25 lbs in the course of 2 years while hypothyroid. Nothing I did seemed to help me lose weight. This past March (2012) I began aerobic walking for 8 consecutive miles nearly every morning (occasional day off). After an entire month of this, I had only lost 1 lb. - I cried. My doc checked my TSH said it was normal and to just keep trying. I asked her to check me for insulin resistance. She did an A1c blood test. The cut-off for that (lower number) is 6. I was 5.5. She said I didn't have it.
Well, I have a background which includes statistics and I understand that ranges are a bell curve and dead center in the range is actually the "normal" and above and below that are deviations from the standard. With a 5.5 I felt that I was likely 1 - 2.5 standard deviations from the mean. Who's to say that MY normal isn't at the mean, or even 1 - 2. deviation below the mean? It's the same way with my thyroid TSH levels, I feel terrible and very symptomatic if my TSH level is at the actual mean. MY normal is around 1 or even a little below. That is where I am symptom free, not gaining weight, no hair falling out, my bowels all but stop functioning and the awful brain fog and depression.
Given this I decided to go ahead and change my diet to treat diabetes. This diet is very low in carbs, but rich in proteins and good fats. I borrowed cookbooks from the library and read a book about insulin resistance.. Once I removed carbs from my diet I began losing the weight within a week. It has taken 2 months (I had to work for every pound), but I have lost nearly 20 of those 25. The biggest thing I had to give up is carbs - that means grains of any kind. I love my toast, my cereal, my pasta, and all sugars. I bake with Almond Flour (sometimes soy) supplement my baking with either whey or or soy protein, and even put some fiber in whether the recipe calls for it or not.
The BEST cookbooks I have found are all by George Stella. You won't miss those carbs or give up sweet treats -pizza or fried chicken - all you have to do is follow his books and the weight will fall off.
One of the problems with being hypo it seems is that we cannot eat carbs without our bodies stacking it on as fat. Too bad I don't know why this happens, I'd be stinking rich. All I know is this is the case for me.
Some people think "Giving up carbs (gluten) - I might as well start eating cardboard!" Not true. Find the right coockbooks, pick up some soy and almond flours, some Xylitol ( a natural sugar substitute), Splenda, or Erithrytol. some Whey and Soy Protein powders and a few healthy cooking oils (throw out the vegetable oil! ) and bake your own sweet treats while losing pounds. If I can give up sugar and flours, you can too.
You do have to walk or swim or otherwise stay active. You don't have to power walk 8 mi a day like I do, but you can pick up a good step counter and start walking 10,000 steps a day. That's how I got started.
Bottom line, there is life after giving up gluten.
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