Despite his office assistant telling me all the tests were fine, the doctor just left me a message saying my thyroid levels were borderline and my Vitamin D levels were low.

At least I finally have a “valid” reason for why I’m so tired all the time – and why I’ve been craving liver for months. As I mentioned before, I always figured my thyroid was out of whack because I have such a low body temperature (last week, it was 93).

He says he wants to watch the thyroid levels for another six months. I’m not thrilled about the idea of being on the thyroid merry-go-round for the rest of my life, so that’s fine with me. I’ll see what I can do in the meantime to build myself up.

9 thoughts on “Arghh

  1. Susie, uhm, for the record? I’m on thyroid meds for underactive thyroid and I was borderline when my doctor put me on meds. Best. Thing. Ever. I had more energy, libido was up, lost weight, mood was better etc.

  2. If you’re looking for alternatives to hormone meds, try the website ‘youngagain’ for information on what you can do on your own.

  3. Hi Susie –
    Very much enjoy your posts!

    Sorry to hear you may be in hypo-thyroid-land. I had my thyroid removed a few years ago and thus have to sub-sist on thyroid medication…so have done a good bit of research.

    Be aware that there have been changes in the range of what is considered “normal” thyroid blood tests. Many GPs and even endocrinologists (specialists) do not go by the new numbers…therefore if your Dr. says you are “borderline” you may actually be quite low by new standards.

    Further, re meds – there are a couple of kinds, and most Drs are heavily, ahem, “encouraged” to presrcibe Synthroid, which is a synthetic version of one of the 2 main T-hormones you need to function….Synthroid works for many people, but for some, esp borderline folks, can actually make them worse after a time.

    So – it’s worth reading up – and hopefully working with your Dr to try a few different types of meds (there is a natural alternative made with porcine-derived thyroid which contains “all” the T-hormones your body makes on its own and may work better)…and see which works best for you.

    Mary Shomon has an excellent site at with a load of helpful info.

    To get a bit more militant, you can also go here – NOTE – quite anti-Synthroid….but also lots of good info, especially to help uynderstand the connection between thyroid and adrenals….

    Sorry the long post! But thyroid issues can really derail you – so I hope this helps, Susie. Best of luck and keep us posted!


  4. Kelp and seaweed. Premier Labs has a great product, ThyroVen, all natural. YOU have to take charge and monitor your thyroid readings; MDs just use a broad scale 0.4 to 4.50, but you may need tight control, 0.40 to 2.50. The synthetic RX does not work nearly as well as the natural supplement. I’ve spent 20 years working on this and it’s finally paid off. I’m 67 and feeling great, with a thyroid reading now consistently under 1.0. Let me know if you need more info. Best.

  5. mjames is spot-on that high-iodine foods such as kelp/seaweed do indeed stimulate the thyroid gland and can spur an uptick in hormone levels.

    Things get a bit muddy if you’ve been low/fatigued for so long that your adrenal glands are flagging also.

    At that point you may need to treat adrenals in conjunction with thyroid….in fact there’s a reccomendation that you “must” adress adrenals prior to medicating for thyroid.

    There’s a lot to research.

    For myself – I had no luck whatsoever until I began taking an adrenal supplement….which I was eventually able to step down off….

    Anyway – best advice is to find an endo who is willing to work with you and just does not blindly prescribe only one med (typically Synthroid)….

  6. About the Vitamin D. Did your doc tell you take Vitamin D supplements? The D level is very important. It affects many things including, I was surprised to find out, bone density, which is a major concern for post-menopausal women. It also affects sleep and energy levels. Increasing your Vit. D levels would be a good thing.

    If you start taking Vitamin D,take at least 1,000 IU a day and make sure you are taking D3. And get your D level tested in no more than 6 months.

  7. Susie, I just saw my endo this past Friday. I had been down to about 35% of Vit D rec’d level, and she put me on 100,000iu per week. I couldn’t find the 50,000iu she prescribed, and found out the AARP RX plan doesn’t pay for Vit D anyway, so I bought OTC versions at my local drug stores when they had the BOGO offers (found only 2000iu initially, but recently found 5000iu pills).

    Use the Vit D3.

    Anyway, my D levels are now fine and I’m down to 5000iu per day now.

    I also take Armour Thyroid (one manufacturer’s version of desiccated pig thyroid Sarah mentioned), also not covered by Medicare’s formulary. But I’ve been better since taking the Armour, and much better since adding the Vit D3.

    It’s recommended to take magnesium with your Vit D, and my endo said to take 500mg. Again, bought BOGO.

    I strongly recommend using a pill case to be sure you’ve remembered to take each day’s rec’d vits and pills.

    As someone who went through declining energy levels since my early 40’s until my thyroid cancer was discovered when I was 59 (and, yes, I was tested for thyroid levels by more than one doctor, and always found to be “right in the middle.” Hah.), I would strongly recommend you begin taking some additional thyroid med NOW. ASAP.

    Why stay lethargic for even another day if you can avoid it? It does take awhile, with repeated blood testing, to find the right level of supplement for any individual.

    It also takes patience, because most docs think you shouldn’t be tested too early, that it takes time for the thyroid to affect your system. I’ve read patients’ comments which indicate some people can feel right away when something’s working; others, not so much.

    Some people have alergic reactions to the fillers in thyroid pills, so if you find a generic which works for you make sure that’s what your drug store is still carrying. FYI-That is not easy to do, so if levels are crucial, as in suppressing possible thyroid cancer cells, docs recommend using only brand name thyroid supplements.

    It took me 5 years to find a doc who cared whether I felt good, instead of the HMO guy who reacted only to test results.

    Also, make sure you get copies of all your test results so you can know what your levels are.

    You do know your levels as of now, right?

    The current rec’d TSH levels are between 0.3 and 3.0; the old levels, which some doctors still think are the current rec’d levels, were between 0.5 and 5.0. (See this Mary Shomon link. Here’s a later post on best levels. This endo thinks between 0.4 and 2.5 is a better range.)

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