Did you know that diet can help heal your thyroid? I have been in practice for over 30 years and have seen over 100,000 patient visits. Many of those patients come in with thyroid issues—hypothyroidism, thyroid nodules, and autoimmune conditions like Hashimoto’s or Grave’s disease.
In my years of practice, I have seen a common thread between patients with thyroid disease, autoimmune disorders, and chronic health conditions such as fatigue, pain, headaches, anxiety, and depression. That one common thread among them is digestive issues. I want to let you know how the two are related and how you can use your diet to improve your thyroid issues, become healthier and start feeling better.
Causes of Thyroid Conditions
There are several main causes of thyroid conditions and nodules that some doctors often miss. These include deficiencies, toxins, infections (bacteria, parasites, yeast, viruses), hormonal imbalance, and food reactions. Sometimes food sensitivities alone can affect the thyroid, but it is usually more than just one thing. This is often the case with chronic health issues and autoimmune health conditions as there are multiple root causes and often linked to food reactions and gut issues.
Using The FreeDiet® to Help Your Thyroid
The FreeDiet® is a diet that I have come up with that can help with gut and thyroid, and other chronic health conditions. My wife, Dawn, had a thyroid nodule that was 2.1 centimeters, and within seven weeks the size was down by 50% at her follow-up ultrasound. Within the first two weeks, she started seeing an improvement in size. Dawn was using my FreeDiet® as well as our Natural Medicine Formulas®, including iodine which she was deficient in.
Another patient of mine was a young girl, about seven years of age, with a very large thyroid (or goiter). Typically, the recommendation for a nodule this size is surgery. But the question is, what caused it.
The FreeDiet® is free of gluten, gluten grains, sugar, yeast, dairy, eggs, soy, legumes, nightshades, and processed foods, as these are the foods that cause the most inflammatory issues. When you avoid inflammation, the gut can heal. Also, when the inflammation is calming down, so are the autoimmune conditions, and the thyroid nodules. The FreeDiet® can help the gut heal, improve absorption, eliminate inflammatory food reactions, allow the body to calm down, and allow many chronic symptoms start to fade away.
Finding the Root Cause of Thyroid Problems
When it comes to thyroid issues, there is a root cause, and it is my job to find it. Patients are normal up until a certain point in their life and then suddenly start having issues. These issues can appear out of nowhere. So, what is the cause? In the case with the young patient earlier, she had deficiencies that included vitamin D and iron. These are both commonly related to thyroid issues.
Other issues she was experiencing were toxins, yeast overgrowth, and unhealthy bacteria and a parasite in her intestine. These are all commonly related to thyroid issues, food sensitivity, and leaky gut. All these issues together resulted in an enlarged thyroid and impacted her health.
Natural Treatment for Thyroid Conditions
For some patients, the FreeDiet® and supplements are enough to help with their thyroid issues, including nodules. I have had emails from people telling me the diet has helped them reduce the size of their thyroid by more than 50% within the first few weeks of using it.
It is important to remember the diet addresses the food sensitivity part of thyroid issues. The diet also helps because if you have yeast, bacteria or parasites in your intestines, they live off the sugar, yeast, and grains you are consuming. By using the FreeDiet®, you minimize their food source and essentially starve the problem.
Leaky Gut and Thyroid
The FreeDiet® also helps with leaky gut. This is because, again, you are eliminating those inflammatory foods that cause you to have the leaky gut problem. If you want to use the diet and get tested for other pathogens, I highly recommend you have a comprehensive stool analysis and blood tests done to determine your deficiencies. These tests can show toxins as well as food sensitivities and allergies. Using the FreeDiet® can help with eliminating the most common foods that cause reactions leading to leaky gut issues and thyroid issues.
I hope you have learned a little more about how your diet and food sensitivities can affect your thyroid and your gut health. If you would like help with this, you can contact us at email@example.com.
My name is Dr. Tom Rofrano from the Natural Medicine Clinic in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. Today, I’m going to talk to you about a patient that came in with a very, very, very, large thyroid nodule—goiter—and how we were able to help her shrink that by 30% in the first three months— and that’s just for starters.
Thyroid Nodules & Goiter: A Case Study
I’ve been practicing for over 30 years—chiropractic, nutrition, functional medicine—and I’ve seen over one hundred thousand patient visits. Lately it seems like more and more patients are coming in with autoimmune conditions, especially thyroid, a lot of nodules. This is just rampant, and we have a lot of these patients.
We have this one woman in particular, a 60-year-old woman, that came in. She happened to see a YouTube video I did with my wife last year where I was able to help my wife shrink her thyroid nodule by over 50% fairly quickly, and how we did that. She saw this and came in, driving quite a distance to get here.
She had this huge thyroid nodule that was over 9 cm. To give you an idea, my neck is about 13 cm wide, so that’s how big it was. This had been going on for about ten years, and she was just feeling miserable.
You have two ways to go with this. There’s the traditional medical route, which, for some people, that’s fine, they do surgery to remove the thyroid, then you’d be on medication for the rest of your life. She didn’t want to do that. She wanted to see if we could help her treat it naturally.
The first thing we do in what we call our Functional & Free Program (a seven step program to identify your underlying root cause and provide long term permanent solutions) is Step 1, a whole-body analysis to determine what tests need to be ordered to figure out what is causing this, because you don’t just get a nodule or goiter for no reason, it’s coming from somewhere. So we do the evaluation to figure out the history and what tests to order to get to some underlying root causes.
As far as this patient’s complaints, besides this goiter, she was completely exhausted, with headaches, brain fog, depression, anxiety, couldn’t lose weight, and she was very bloated and swollen. She had neck, back, and joint pain, insomnia, sinus congestion, the whole gamut of digestive issues, and a lot of skin issues as well. She was just, from head to toe, really struggling.
Determining Root Causes
Basically we look for areas of physical, chemical, and mental stress. Under chemical stress, we test for three things:
In her case, she had multiple nutrient deficiencies—nine, to be exact. Vitamins and minerals, plus an iodine deficiency.
Iodine is one of those things that can be very controversial because there are so many experts saying that iodine is terrible if you have thyroid issues or the thyroid autoimmune condition Hashimoto’s Disease, which she has. So, a lot of people say you shouldn’t take iodine at all and avoid it like the plague. People try to find iodine-free multiple vitamins because they’re afraid of it.
On the other hand, if you test for iodine, which we did with her, and it’s low, if someone is deficient (and she was really deficient), then it can be really helpful. As a matter of fact, iodine deficiency is and can be a primary cause of goiter.
So, she was deficient in nine nutrients, plus iodine (one of the lowest levels I’ve seen in iodine, by the way). So that’s one area, deficiencies. Two, we look at toxins.
In her case, she tested high for five heavy metals, including mercury and led. Whereas many thyroid Hashimoto’s patients are iron deficient and anemic, she was the opposite. She had too much iron in her system. Too much iron is very toxic, like any other metal. Extremely toxic and can damage organs and every other part of your body. So her ferritin level, which represents stored iron in your body, was very high.
The third area we look at besides deficiencies and toxins is infections.
Infections, viruses, bacteria, yeast & parasites
Before she came to me, she’d been to a number of different doctors. She brought in 94 pages of labs and medical records from before she came to see me.
She was positive for many different viruses, including Epstein-Barr, very common with Hashimoto’s and nodules. When I did additional testing, we do comprehensive stool testing, she had bacterial overgrowth in her intestines and she also had yeast overgrowth. I often see yeast overgrowth and Hashimoto’s/nodules together, I mean almost every Hashimoto’s patient we have has yeast overgrowth. That went on with her chronic sinus issues and her skin issues.
Besides deficiencies, toxins, and infections, as if that wasn’t enough—because you don’t want to just find one thing, when someone comes in with an over 9 cm nodule, there’s going to be a lot of things going on—then we look at a fourth category, food sensitivities.
She was sensitive to ten different foods, plus gluten. She had a very significant gluten sensitivity. She also tested positive for leaky gut.
With these gut infections going on and eating gluten, that can cause leaky gut, which then in turn makes you much more sensitive to all foods, and can cause autoimmune conditions like Hashimoto’s.
In addition to that, she was sensitive to a number of chemicals, including one that she was exposed to on a daily basis working in the cosmetics industry. It was over twelve different specific things we found.
Treating Root Causes
So what do we do from there?
Basically, I put her on a diet. We call it the FreeDiet because it’s not only gluten free, but it’s free of gluten, grains, sugar, yeast, corn, dairy, soy, legumes, eggs and GMO’s. It’s a diet to help reduce those foods most commonly responsible for inflammation and gut issues and really allow your body to heal.
If you’d like a complimentary copy of the FreeDiet™ – Phase 1, click here.
Natural Medicine Formulas
I put her on a number of different supplements to help with these deficiencies she was having. Iodine as well, yes, relatively high doses of iodine. Again, don’t run out and take iodine. You need to test first to figure out if you need it and how much.
So I have her taking that, as well as different herbal remedies to address the yeast overgrowth and very powerful probiotics for bacterial overgrowth. Also, as a supplement to address the elevated heavy metals and iron, I had her start doing infrared sauna to help sweat out these toxins. I also advised she start avoiding exposure to chemicals at work.
She also had adrenal fatigue, adrenal stress, her numbers were really off there, on top of everything there. And her hormones were off—her estrogen and progesterone ratios were way off. I prescribed adrenal adaptogenic herbs to help balance out her adrenals.
I recommended some stress-relieving lifestyle changes as well.
So we put all that together, followed her along, and retested to make sure that things were improving. Just this week, I had her 3-month ultrasound report back, since we’d ordered one initially, and I’m happy to say this over 9 cm nodule/goiter shrunk by 30%. She had three other nodules that all shrank an average of 30%. So overall, the size of the goiter and the nodules averaged 30% reduction in three months, so we’re both thrilled about that.
And this is just the start. I’m planning on continuing on this path, and reaching out, and continuing to see it shrink. She’s obviously thrilled, because number one, all of her symptoms have cleared up, you know, fatigue, aches and pains, headaches, and the 50 other things she came in with. Also, this huge mass on her thyroid that changed her voice, made it difficult to swallow, and, understandably, made her very self-conscious was visibly shrinking, so she’s very happy about that, and I am as well, and all of us here at the Natural Medicine Clinic.
So just know that for any chronic health issue, whether you have thyroid nodules or goiter or Hashimoto’s, or other autoimmune conditions or other chronic health condition, you have a choice. You can choose to live with it, or maybe take medications for this and that, or surgeries, and that’s one choice. Or you can choose health, you can choose to really look into what the underlying causes are, address those, and then be provided solutions to have you get better.
Thanks for joining me today and feel free to subscribe to my YouTube channel if you want notifications of new videos. And if you click on the link to the FreeDiet™ – Phase 1, we’ll send that right over to you. I look forward to giving you further updates. See you next time. Take care.
I’ve seen more than 100,000 patient visits and many of our patients come in with chronic complaints of digestive issues, IBS, IBD, headaches, migraines, aches and pains, fatigue, anxiety, depression, skin issues, brain fog; just a host of chronic complaints. I mean, we’re talking complaints beyond those, but those are the basic ones — the foundation, really — and they’ve had them for years. They went to this doctor, that doctor, they tried gluten-free diets and nothing worked long term.
Testing and Going Gluten-Free
We do a lot of testing and almost everyone, the majority of our patients, is gluten sensitive. So why would I say gluten-free diets don’t work? Well, one reason is when you’re sensitive to gluten, when you have these chronic issues, you’re not only sensitive to gluten but I found it’s also grains, yeast, sugar, soy; a number of different foods that you’re sensitive to. So just eliminating the gluten out of your diet might make you feel good for a little while, but is not going to do the trick.
Roughly 10 years ago now, when I personally had a lot of these same health issues like IBS, aches and pains, fatigue, brain fog, skin issues, and just overall felt miserable. I had thyroid Hashimoto’s, and my rheumatoid antibodies were elevated so I had aches and pains all over. I was just feeling really miserable and I found out I was gluten sensitive, which runs in my family, so I went on a gluten-free diet. For breakfast, I would have gluten-free toast that contained millet, yeast, and other ingredients. For lunch, I would go to the Chinese restaurant next to my office at the time for rice with plenty of vegetables. For dinner, I would have gluten-free pasta or more rice or millet. I mean, I was feeling miserable.
I might have felt a little bit better mentally because I was doing this, but I just continued to feel worse and worse. I stopped to evaluate what was going on. It turns out there were many other foods I was sensitive to as well. And when you are sensitive to gluten, I’ve found the best diet is free of all the common allergens, which I call the FreeDiet™. Those foods are the most commonly responsible for digestive and other chronic health issues in hundreds and thousands of people.
Process of Elimination
The common food allergens include gluten, grains, sugar, yeast, dairy, eggs, soy, legumes, nightshades and corn. When I started eliminating those all the grains, sugar, yeast, I was eating lunch and dinner full of proteins and vegetables. (You know, more meat, chicken, fish, lots of vegetables, essential fats and eliminating those common allergenic foods.) Then I started to feel better: Digestive issues started clearing up, brain fog lifted, my skin started clearing up and the antibodies went down to normal. And that’s when I really started healing.
A Different Way to Eat
Since then, I have had so many patients on The FreeDiet™ and found it really effective for people to follow. The other thing that’s interesting is when people go on a gluten-free diet is they start buying all these gluten-free products. Some patients come in and with symptoms like IBS and say they’re gluten-free. I ask what they eat for breakfast, and it turns out its gluten-free bagels or gluten-free toast. Then for lunch, they eat rice and gluten-free pasta and the same thing for dinner. They might have some protein with that but they’re eating starches, carbs, and grains for meals. And then there are snacks like gluten-free cookies, gluten-free cake, and gluten-free brownies. Like seriously, it’s the grains, the sugar, and the starches that are driving all that inflammation.
I had a patient who had chronic migraines her whole life and was in her early 50’s by this point. She had a lot of symptoms associated with gluten. She had depression and anxiety, chronic pain, digestive issues, and migraines — debilitating migraines. We got to a point between the Free Diet, supplements, and treatment where she was completely better.
Relapse to Migraines?
Then one day she called for an appointment and came in with a severe migraine though she hadn’t had one in quite a long time.
“What do you eat? Do you have anything gluten?” I asked.
She said she had not.
“Well, any new foods or snacks or anything?” I asked.
“I have been eating these gluten-free rice crisps,” she said.
And after I got the name of these snacks, I looked them up online. Sure enough, it says gluten-free. You know, it’s another example of great marketing, saying no high fructose corn syrup, low cholesterol per serving, made with corn and a whole grain brown rice. But I looked at the ingredients. The gluten-free snacks contained brown rice flour, corn, whey, salt, corn, sugar, cheese, and monosodium glutamate (MSG). Aha, there’s MSG in these ‘healthy gluten-free products’ and you’re wondering why you have a migraine?
Gluten-Free Products – The Deception
Just because it says a gluten-free product does not mean it’s healthy or it’s not going to mess you up. Be aware of that. So there are gluten-free products per se that have a lot of these other things in them. If you’re going to eat gluten-free, then just choose foods that are naturally gluten-free; like vegetables, meat, chicken, fish, you know, avocados, and fruits. Those are all naturally free of gluten, but these packaged products, you can often land you in trouble.
Another Reason They Don’t Work
And then lastly, there’s another reason why gluten-free diets don’t work. A huge factor is that when you have a chronic digestive or other health issues or pathogens, infections, most are phases. These issues have yeast, parasites, or bacterial overgrowth. So we do lab testing, we do a lot of stool test kits that we send patients home with to check for all these digestive markers, pathogens and infections. Almost everyone comes back with parasites, yeast overgrowth, bacterial overgrowth, or all three. So when you have these growing in your system, just avoiding gluten isn’t going to get you better.
Get the Facts
You really need to find out what’s in there first, and then we can provide solutions to clear it up. There are different things we can do to help resolver bacterial overgrowth or parasites. The bottom line: It comes down to honing in on what exactly is the root cause of your symptoms and then providing long-term permanent solutions so that you can get better.
Thanks for joining me this week. If you know anyone that would benefit from this, feel free to share it. If you’d like to subscribe to my YouTube channel so you can get notification of new videos, go ahead and do that. And if you want a copy of The FreeDiet™, you can just click here.
My name is Dr. Tom Rofrano from the Natural Medicine Clinic in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. And today, I’m going to talk to you about thyroid Hashimoto’s- the worst case I ever saw. You see, I’ve been practicing for over 30 years now with chiropractic, functional medicine, and nutrition. And a lot of patients come in with thyroid issues, autoimmune, nodules- it’s one of the more common things that patients come in with. It may have something to do with the fact I also had Hashimoto’s over ten years ago, and after a lot of investigation, I was able to figure out what was causing it and actually heal myself. If I’m near you, I’d love to be the Hashimoto’s disease specialist and functional medicine practitioner that also helps heal you!
A Multitude of Symptoms
This one particular patient came in over ten years ago, and she had the craziest symptoms pointing to an autoimmune condition. She had stinging… all these stinging, numbing, shooting pain (like pin prick pains) all over her body that woke her up at night, fatigue, brain fog, digestive issues. She had constipation. and I mean severe constipation, thinning hair, dry skin, aches, and pains, and she had high cholesterol. Her doctors wanted to put her on statin drugs – and actually, low thyroid hormone levels can cause all of these things, including high cholesterol, insomnia, and anxiety. With all this going on, she wasn’t sleeping. She couldn’t even think straight.
So, she had been to a number of different doctors. They finally diagnosed her with peripheral neuropathy. They had no idea what caused it and prescribed her this powerful nerve drug. She took it once and ended up in the emergency room. Then she came in as a new patient, and I did a complete initial evaluation and found out she had Hashimoto’s disease, an autoimmune condition and thyroid disease.
Her thyroglobulin antibodies were over 5000, normal is below 100. Her TPO antibodies were almost 300, and, depending on the lab, normal is less than 50. I then sent her to an endocrinologist at the time, and she prescribed Synthroid and said her thyroid will continue to get worse. She said that her thyroid gland will continue to deteriorate, maybe go higher and maybe lower, and that she will develop nodules and possibly even goiter. And didn’t paint a very rosy picture. She was really frustrated and feeling miserable.
Right After My Diagnosis
Around this time, I also coincidentally found out I had Hashimoto’s disease. I was doing a lot of research and investigating and figuring out what caused it. I couldn’t take for an answer what the endocrinologist told me, “There’s nothing you can do about it except take Synthroid for the rest of your life.” So in the process, I realized that chronic health conditions, whether you have an autoimmune condition, whether it’s Hashimoto’s disease – which is autoimmune thyroid- really any chronic health condition is caused by three main things: physical, mental, and chemical stress.
As far as physical stress goes, she did have a lot of neck issues that we were helping her with. As far as mental stress, after testing, she did have adrenal dysfunction/adrenal fatigue. SChemical stress- after doing lab work and figuring out what was going on, it basically breaks down into four main parts. Under chemical stress, the first is deficiencies.
With autoimmune conditions, there’s an underlying theme, whether you have rheumatoid arthritis, MS, diabetes type 1, lupus, or Hashimoto’s disease… your body is attacking itself.
So why is your body attacking itself? I don’t take it that it’s just a deficiency of these other drugs they want to just keep giving you and not giving you an answer. So it’s finding out what it is that the body is fighting off. If you’re deficient in certain things, then your body isn’t functioning properly.
For instance, this patient was deficient in vitamin D, magnesium, B12, iron, and iodine. If you’re deficient in iodine, then that affects your thyroid hormone. You need iodine to make thyroid hormone, and if you’re deficient in iodine, that can cause nodules on your thyroid gland and goiter. And you shouldn’t just go and take iodine if you haven’t tested for it because it can also be too high. That can cause more harm than good, but in her case, she was deficient in that- again, along with Vitamin D, iron, B12, and magnesium. So all these things are very important in getting your body to function at a normal level because that’s really what’s going on with autoimmune. Your immune system’s gone haywire. So that’s number one of the deficiencies.
She was high in lead and mercury, both of which are actually nerve toxins. They affect your brain, nervous system, and immune system, among many other things. The peripheral neuropathy that she was having was affected by this, in addition to the other deficiencies.
Pathogens are extremely important and, from my experience, almost always involved with autoimmune conditions, such as Hashimoto’s disease and other immune system-fighting diseases. She had really high levels of yeast. She had multiple parasites. And she had bacterial overgrowth. Now all of this can cause a leaky gut, which then increases the number of food reactions. This leads to the fourth thing under chemical stress.
Food sensitivities, food reactions, and food allergies, in her case, she was sensitive to gluten, yeast, sugar, legumes, dairy, eggs, and some others. Now if you’re eating foods you’re reacting to, gluten, for instance, and that’s an issue, then your body’s immune system is fighting this off and attacking it. Your immune system sees it as a foreign invader and then, in the case of Hashimoto’s disease, can actually start attacking the thyroid gland while it’s attacking its gluten molecules. So, I almost always find that gluten and yeast are involved with Hashimoto’s disease. After testing, that is what we saw with her, and it was very similar to my case.
Beyond Gluten – The FreeDiet™
So what I did for my for myself and many other patients since is that I realized gluten-free diets just didn’t work because you’re eating all these other gluten-free products with rice, rice flour, corn, corn flour, and all these others. Eating gluten-free donuts and gluten-free cakes and cookies – it just doesn’t work. So what I came up with is a diet that did work.
It is a diet that’s not only free of gluten but free of gluten grains, sugar, yeast, dairy, eggs, soy, legumes, nightshades, and processed foods. And for phase one, because you’re eliminating these foods that are most responsible for digestive and other chronic health issues, this allows your body to heal, calm the inflammation, and actually get better. And it’s called the FreeDiet™- that’s what I followed and what I put this patient on.
Functional and Free Program
So after doing all this testing and putting her through our treatment plan, which has since evolved- I call our Functional and Free program because it really is designed to discover your underlying root causes and provide long-term permanent solutions. Over time following this, it was an involved process because, in addition to the food reactions, we had deficiencies, pathogens- yeast, multiple parasites, bacterial overgrowth- and heavy metals. Over time, she started to get better. and her symptoms were subsiding. At one point, she had constipation so badly that she did not have a bowel movement for two weeks- like none, zero for two weeks. Like, where is this stuff going?
And then, I was doing different things with her, and it was helping a lot, but her endocrinologist refused to give her anything but Synthroid. So I said to ask her again to get her on a thyroid hormone which is natural T4 with T3 because a lot of people can’t convert, and that can cause a lot of symptoms like constipation, etc. So she finally did, and that was it. As far as constipation goes, that cleared up. She goes every day, which is so important.
If you need medication, then get on the right one. Speaking of deficiencies, in her case, the T3 was still really low. So after all of this began to die, the supplements, you know, go to our seven-stuff process. You know, the antibody started to come down. In about 2 years, they came down almost 1000 points to 4400.
Getting to Normal
And then we started putting everything together, and in the next two years’ time after doing all of this, it went from 4400 to 114. You know, from over 4000 to around 100- so normal levels in two years. It was amazing to see that transformation, and she was feeling great. Her thyroid hormone deficiency symptoms had cleared up. All her labs along with her symptoms- stinging, all that stuff, aches, and pains. The cholesterol was- went down to normal. All of our issues had cleared up, and it’s just so encouraging.
Even in a very severe case like this or whatever is going on with you, in most cases, you can get better. It’s just a matter of really committing, getting in there, and finding out, what’s causing this. Get to the root cause of your symptoms, such as brain fog, and then be provided with some long-term, permanent solutions so that you can get better.
So I wanted to share that story with you today, and thanks so much for joining me. If you would like a copy of the Free Diet, just click on the link. If you know anyone that would benefit from this, feel free to share it again, I appreciate you spending time with me today, and we will see you next time.
Today, I’m going to talk to you about healing Hashimoto’s. For those of you who may not be familiar with it, Hashimoto’s is an autoimmune thyroid condition where your body produces antibodies against your own thyroid tissue. The thyroid starts to get destroyed over time causing typically low thyroid function. It is the most common cause of hypothyroidism in the United States.
Many Are Unaware
Most people aren’t even aware that they have it. Over 20 million Americans have hypothyroidism, most of which are caused by Hashimoto’s. Many are even unaware that they have that. Most people that have it are women, although some men do have it.
Usually, I’ll tell the story of certain patients I’ve treated with it. But today I’m going to talk about my own experience because I had Hashimoto’s over ten years ago. I was able to clear it up so I’m going tell you about how I was able to do that.
The usual symptoms that you’ll have with this are fatigue, brain fog, difficulty getting up in the morning, aches and pains, numbness and tingling, carpal tunnel, anxiety, hair loss. These are all very common symptoms, even headaches, plantar fasciitis which is heel pain. And infertility and miscarriages are very common for low thyroid function. Chronic infections, constipation, and many more symptoms beyond that. As you can see, it can really make you feel terrible.
Why It Goes Undiagnosed
The reason why it mainly goes undiagnosed is typically when you go to a doctor and get lab work, they will check just a few different things like a chem screen CBC, lipids, and TSH. And TSH is not enough to evaluate the thyroid. That’s a pituitary hormone that indirectly measures your thyroid function, but misses most cases.
When patients come in, I’ll order typically six different thyroid values along with everything else and often a TSH will be normal but when I look at the free T3 and free T4, they’re often below optimal ranges and the thyroid antibodies are often elevated, and that’s what indicates Hashimoto’s.
You May Never Find Out Unless…
So, if you’re just getting a TSH and maybe a T4 test and you’re not checking the others and your antibodies, you may never find out. You can go on feeling tired, have hair loss, brain fog, anxiety, depression, and feeling miserable.
What’s even worse than that is if you do go to your doctor and they find it, they’ll usually prescribe synthetic thyroid medication which in my experience, many people don’t do well with. It synthetic T4, and it doesn’t address T3 which many people are low in.
If they do know that you have Hashimoto’s, if they have your antibodies tested usually by an endocrinologist, they’ll say, and this is what happened to me, when I went in back in 2005. When I went in after I tested myself and found out that I had Hashimoto’s, the endocrinologist told me, “Well, there’s no known cause and no known cure. It continues to get worse, your thyroid will continue to deteriorate over time and your antibodies may go up, they may go down, there’s no sense in even measuring them because it’s not going to get better and you will just continually need more and more Synthroid as you get older because the thyroid will continue to deteriorate. You’ll usually get more nodules and bigger nodules and that’s there’s nothing you can do about it.”
Investigation and Research
That didn’t settle well with me, and I couldn’t accept that. So, I started investigating and researching what causes Hashimoto’s, what causes autoimmune in general because at that time I also tested positive for rheumatoid arthritis antibodies. Usually, when you have one autoimmune, you have another one and one or two or more beyond that.
I thought, there’s something going on, so what can it be? I feel every health condition has a cause, every problem has a solution, so I started researching this. What I found out is it came down to the cause of most autoimmune and chronic health conditions–physical, chemical, and mental stress. So I am going to talk about the chemical stress component. So, breaking that down, I first look at deficiencies.
So, if you have nutrient deficiencies, that can cause your body and immune system to breakdown. In my case, I was low in vitamin D which is incredible because at that time I lived at the beach and was out on the beach, multiple times a week. And I was extremely low in vitamin D. So, that was a shock. When you’re low in D, that can affect your immune system and it’s been linked with autoimmune conditions. I was also low in magnesium which can cause aches and pains and contribute to numbness and tingling and a lot of other symptoms. Vitamin B12 was another one, I was deficient in and that can contribute to fatigue, brain, nerve and blood issues.
The Physical Impact of Deficiencies
So in my case at that time, I was having carpal tunnel syndrome and peripheral neuropathy. It got so bad that I wasn’t able to even work on patients for a number of years. I had to hire another chiropractor to come in and did the manual therapy while I did the evaluations and nutrition and functional medicine. So, I figured out the low B12, magnesium and vitamin D, just to name a few. I was someone who ate what I thought was a healthy diet and was taking supplements but certainly not enough and not the right ones.
Functional & Free
That’s why testing is step one in our treatment program which I call Functional & Free which is a seven-step treatment program to get to the root cause of your condition and provide long-term permanent solutions. Step one is getting an evaluation to find out what’s going on so that’s what I was doing. Another form of chemical stress besides deficiencies is toxins.
When I tested heavy metals, I was high in arsenic and mercury which are nerve toxins. Again, the numbness, tingling, carpal tunnel, ulnar neuropathy. As far as arsenic, I was eating a healthy diet which included a lot of rice. I went to the Chinese restaurant, the next door at my office, and I would load up on it. I would get mixed vegetables with rice. I would skip the chicken and would get me extra rice instead.
I thought that was healthy. So, I was eating lots of rice multiple times a week. I was also drinking this detox shake which was rice protein. The healthy hypoallergenic detox shake was at the time made from rice protein. It turns out, it just loaded with arsenic, go figure.
Pathogens / Infections
The third form of chemical stress is pathogens, meaning infections like bacteria, viruses, parasites, and yeast. After doing a comprehensive stool testing, I had yeast overgrowth. I had a lot of antibiotic use when I was a kid. My father was a medical doctor so I was often on antibiotics for all kinds of things.
I had parasite also. Infectious disease specialists say that it doesn’t happen in the United States. Well, I had one. I think I picked it up in Rio de Janeiro, when I was in chiropractic college in early to mid-twenties. A friend and I went down there for spring break to Rio. I guess we thought we were going to pick up women but instead I picked up a parasite!
That wasn’t expected, and all these years I was living with chronic digestive issues, feeling terrible. So when you have yeast and you have parasites, it ramps up your immune system and you’re constantly, your immune system is trying to fight this off. And meanwhile, it can start attacking your own cells, in my case, the thyroid, and joints.
The fourth cause of chemical stress is food sensitivities. So, getting food sensitivity testing is one option, that’s what I did. You know, in my case, I was sensitive to many different foods but gluten was a big one, dairy, yeast, legumes, among other foods. So, that can cause inflammation, leaky gut and in turn, be a trigger for autoimmunity. The immune system is fighting off these foreign invaders, these food reactions.
On mental stress, I had adrenal fatigue issues that I found after testing so I was treating that. At the same time, I was taking digestive enzymes, natural remedies to clear up the parasites, the yeast, and replacing all these nutrients. Over time, I started to get better and my thyroid antibody, started to go down and down and down, and by the spring of 2009, they were completely down to normal. So, it took many months of investigating and finding all this out but I recovered and it’s been about ten years that my thyroid and rheumatoid arthritis antibodies have been in normal range.
Using Research and Experience to Help Others
Since then I’ve used this information I learned on research and figured out to help many other patients. One of the more common things patients come in with over the last many years is thyroid issues, Hashimoto’s. So and when I see that, I just go through the Functional & Free protocol. Do the evaluations to get the underlying root cause. So, besides clearing up all these sources of chemical stress like the sensitivities, the toxins, clearing those out, addressing adrenal fatigue, and, parasites, yeast overgrowth.
Benefits of The FreeDiet®
The type of diet, I ultimately figured out works best. So, I was gluten-free for a while and I found out that it did not work so I started avoiding other foods, the most common food allergens. This list I came up with that really worked well for me and ultimately helped get me better was a diet free of not only gluten but gluten, grains, sugar, yeast, dairy, eggs, soy, legumes. Those are the most common food allergens.
I call it The FreeDiet®. And that’s the diet that really helped me. Within this diet is also a candida diet for yeast overgrowth which most everyone that has Hashimoto’s, an autoimmune condition, almost every person I’ve seen is dealing with yeast overgrowth issues. Ramping up that immune system and wreaking havoc on your whole body. So if you and if you want a copy of phase one of The FreeDiet®, I’d be happy to share that with you.
Replacing the Deficiency
And the other thing is replacing deficiencies. So after testing to find out specifically what’s going on like when I was deficient in all those things. The most common recommendations of the foundational nutritional supplements typically recommend for Hashimoto’s and hyperthyroid conditions are our Natural Medicine Formulas. ActiveMulti, a fish oil supplement, magnesium, probiotics, vitamin D with K2, These are the basic foundational supplements, and there are specific ones beyond that based on testing.
Often selenium is low. Iodine, which is very controversial because so many people out there saying iodine is the devil if you have Hashimoto’s. However, when I tested myself, I was low in it and many other patients I test are low. When we give iodine and that can really help. If you’re low and you replenish that, it helps tremendously. If you don’t need iodine and you take it, it can make thyroid issues worse. So, that’s one thing really needs to be tested before you go and take it.
So, The FreeDiet® and supplements, are two of the biggest things that help and there’s a lot of different lifestyle issues. Addressing stress and things like that, and if you’re suffering from aches and pains, and physical issues, of course, the manual therapy, the physical aspects of treatment and functional training exercises, are all part of the whole treatment plan.
It’s important to know that if you have an autoimmune condition, Hashimoto’s or any chronic health condition you can get better if you first discover the underlying root causes. Once that is figured out, coming up with a plan to help provide permanent, long-term solutions. You find the cause then you can find solutions to getting better.
So, yes, you can get better. With everything I learned, I was able to do it with Hashimoto’s and a lot of other health issues that I had and fortunately, I’ve been blessed to be able to help so many other patients as well.
Click The FreeDiet® If you would like a copy of the FreeDiet® phase 1 food chart.
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Content on this website is based upon the opinions of Thomas Rofrano, D.C. and is not considered medical advice. It is designed to be a sharing of knowledge and information from the research and experience of Dr. Rofrano and his community. Dr. Rofrano encourages you to make your health care decisions based upon your research and in partnership with a qualified health care professional. Dr. Rofrano is a chiropractic physician and offers physical and nutritional support and guidance to those seeking alternative or complementary care to traditional medicine. His care is not meant to replace that from your primary doctor and specialists but rather to help you on your path to achieving life-long vibrant health.
Regarding any supplements mentioned: *These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. If you are pregnant, nursing, taking medication, or have a medical condition, consult your physician before using this product.