Hypothyroid Face

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The before and after pictures shared by Korg Kcuf in the last post on low-carb hypothyroidism reminded me of the stunning before and after hypothyroid treatment pictures I once came across.  Fortunately, I have found these photos online, and they do show some remarkable changes in facial appearance.

By Matt Stone

You often hear this swollen facial appearance referred to as “carbo face,” which is one of the more retarded things I’ve ever heard.  If anything, this should be called “Eskimo face,” as the native Eskimo had perhaps the puffiest and roundest faces on earth. You can even see telltale signs of facial myxedema in this young Eskimo mother, with quite a bit of fluid gathering below and above the eyes.  And this is someone who is incredibly well-adapted and epigenetically-programmed to a diet high in meat and fat and low in carbohydrate.

Anyway, Korg’s development of increased abdominal fat, a posture more rounded in the shoulder area, facial puffiness, and a drooping chin among other changes are prominent signs of hypothyroidism, as well as hypercortisolism/Cushing’s.  These two conditions tend to go together, overlap, and cause one another – so it’s hard to separate one from the other.  There is no question though that these facial and physical changes can be used diagnostically to tell what, in general, is taking place in someone’s body.  And sorry to pick on low-carb.  There are countless paths to hypothyroidism and/or hypercortisolism, such as calorie restriction, endurance exercise, stress, chronic inflammation, infection, winter, or allergy.

I remember when I had just finished doing 5 months of intense physical exercise on a low-carb diet for the first time my body and face became very puffy.  My eyes started looking very swollen, especially first thing in the morning (interestingly, laying down for long periods allows gravity to bring the fluid back from the body and into the face – it’s very common to have a puffy face in the morning that ends up in the “cankles” if you have spent a lot of time standing during the day).  This is not just from the low-carb diet alone though.  My face (and belly) got very swollen again during re-feeding after my most recent bout of overly-strenuous endurance exercise in 2009, and has since cleared out even though my weight has increased by 15 pounds (mostly lean tissue increase).  But enough about me.  Here are some before and after thyroid treatment photos featured at http://www.jcrows.com/hypothyroidism.html.

Pay attention to the hypothyroid/hypercortisol affects, including swelling of the neck, swelling below the eyes and in the upper cheeks, swelling between the eyes and eyebrows (the fluid presses the brow upward), disappearance of the outer third of the eyebrow and hair in general, and subtle retraction of the nose.  Very fascinating.  If you’re a nerd I guess.  Following a hypothyroid diet many notice steady improvement in these exact facial patterns, even if they gain body fat.

 

 

 

 

 

102 Comments

  1. I find in my Health Counseling practice with women with Hashimoto's, and I also noticed this in myself when I was positive for Hashimoto's, that there is a redness and puffiness below the eyeball on the ridge of the cheeks. I believe this is a mark of autoimmune disease, the underlying issues of course being gut dysfunction, infection, food allergies, and inflammation. It is very interesting to note, as you did here Matt, that this does go away once working on diet and healing the gut. I am certainly a testament to that myself.

    Thanks for this post. :)

    Reply
    • My wife struggles wit Hashimoto ‘s and takes no meds. Please any info you could offer would help and be greatly appreciated. Thank you!

      Reply
      • Paul… for healing Hashis I reccommend you join 2 yahoo groups. 1. Low Dose Naltrexone and 2. Iodine… lots of info on healing autoimmune illnesses. HTH. Jagrati

        Reply
  2. The treatment pics are fascinating, but I don't think the comparison with the Eskimo is fair. In order to properly compare, you'd need a picture of someone genetically similar without that look. In my experience, people of Native American stock have such faces regardless of diet.

    Reply
  3. Dang it, I wish that Armour helped me that much. I got all the way up to 3 grains but ended up overdosing. The doc and I adjusted my levels over 3 years but I never really got relief from symptoms. I also tried the Wilson t3 therapy for 4 rounds but my temp barely rose, never did get to 98.6. I am completely off Armour since mid-Ray May and my temps are up: morning 97.4 to 97.8 axillary AM, up to 98.3 axillary during the day with no cold hands or feet but I still have problems with swollen face and feet in the AM. Not bad swelling by any means, just a little. But never did I experience anything as dramatic as those pics.

    Thanks for the great pictures, it really illustrates the point you are trying to make :)

    Reply
  4. So fascinating – thanks for posting about this. The before and afters are amazing.

    Reply
  5. Interesting photos! Note that if you click the links (hint, Michelle) and read the notes associated – the follow-up photos were several months later. Don't give up.

    I have also reversed Hashimoto's (normal TSH and no antibodies) from first Hyper to Sub-Cl. Hypo and now NORMAL. My Dr. nearly had a fainting spell when she read my latest report. "No meds for you!"

    Also cleared up TMJ symptoms – How? ETF! ETF!

    ~Anna

    Reply
    • Hi,
      Whats ETF ?

      Thanks

      Reply
        • Okay – many of you are talking about ETF and Armour….I had my thyroid removed a year ago…my face is round, I am an apple and I am now on 125 Levo. Every 3 months my test creeps upwards and my doctor adds more Levothyroxozine…..test is supposed to be no greater than .o5, last one was 8.6….what food am I supposed to eat to improve my appearance?

          Reply
          • Thanks…..do you have a book out – or something you could send?

  6. Melissa-

    Ha, I wasn't trying to be fair, as calling someone with a swollen face a "carbo face" isn't fair either. Just being an immature jerk. It's fun. Pregnancy can cause hypothyroidism and those facial changes as well.

    Reply
    • Wow, I’m pretty sure that’s what is going on with me. I feel puffier than ever after having two kids and then eating low carb for the last year (until 2 months ago when I started RRARFing!) Is it enough to ETF (I’m gaining weight, energy and higher temps), or should I be supplementing with dessicated thyroid or something?

      Reply
  7. The naked lady grew some boobage! Wonder if this also helps transforms lady apple shapes to pear shapes.

    Reply
    • My boobage doubled in size and has become sore and tender. Eltroxin was the cause of this. Oil of evening primrose no help at all as am intolerant to it. It is debilitating, uncomfortable and some sporting activities have had to stop because it hurts. Had the same problem years ago when the pill was the culprit. Then ,because of the pain, couldn’t raise my arms above my head!!! Had to have an op to remoce the offending tissue. The NHS, of course, now the going has got tough, has turned it’s back and walked away. The only way to solve this for me is to remove the offending tissue once again. Analgesic & anti- inflamms do not work.

      Reply
  8. Seeing these "clinical" photos now makes me look at people in public differently – wondering if they need some bananas and tater therapy.

    Reply
  9. Kelly-

    She grew breast tissue and lots of lean mass with no added body fat. Many underweight (and overweight) women who embark on RRARF have this experience, but for women it can be scary because the scale increases dramatically, and there often is some fat gain in the first 2-3 months.

    Most women will find that their ideal body weight is much higher than they thought it was. Like Amanda who is very lean and attractive at 165 pounds. Great post by the way Amanda (I assume you'll read this)…

    http://www.batty.us/2011/01/be-strong-not-skinny/

    Reply
    • Hi that link doesn’t work… The be strong not skinny…..thanks Matt!

      Reply
      • Looks like that site is no longer up. This is an old post so that kinda stuff happens I s’pose.

        Reply
        • server blew up and munged my database. hold up, i’ll get it back up.

          Reply
  10. Cool photos… it strikes me that knowledge of hypothyroidism has back-slipped in modern medical times. As having been only recently diagnosed with Hashimoto's, after years of complaining about a puffy face, I think the medical establishment has some brushing up to do…but perhaps I am biased.

    Reply
  11. Hi Matt. Don't the Eskimo have extra subcutaneous fat due to the cold climate for insulation purposes rather than edema as you mention with myxedema? Hasn't this been demonstrated in swimmers at the English Channel who start to get the same thing since they're swimming in such cold waters?

    Reply
    • Maybe the extreme cold lowers their metabolism (english channel swimmers).

      Reply
  12. Funny, I seem to have gone through some similar changes in the face (unfortunately in the reverse order). I can't believe how much these people have changed. Puts all those complete-makeover-shows to shame. Wished that would happen for me, too. I am still diligently eating the food but so far nothing much has changed. I think part of it is due to my sleeping disorder which may have evolved into a full-blown anxiety order by now: I hope I can sleep – why am I not sleeping – I can't sleep! – panic attack – no sleep at all.

    A question for Anna: You wrote you overcame Hashi's by eating the food. Did you avoid anything in order not to trigger an autoimmune response? If you didn't, did you avoid some foods before getting Hashimoto's?

    Reply
  13. Has anyone else noticed the hair change in these people? I've noticed over the years my hair is thicker, shinier, less greasy, and has gone from straight to slightly wavy. definitely meaningful.

    Reply
  14. Oh and is it just me or do some of these pictures show that the people grew hair back? (Maybe you could sell RRAARF as a re-fur-ing programm, Matt ;-) Wouldn't sound that different but would probably make you instantly rich.

    Reply
  15. What does the area above the eye correlate to, anyone? I know right below is kidneys, and right below that is … I forget, but anyway, been looking for years but can't find a facial chart that says for above. Because want to know what it means when someone is super puffy above, despite it below always being 100% tight like a healthy child. Not that it means healthy, it doesn't, as there are major kidney issues in this case, but probably over-active kidneys, etc, while under-active [whatever above is], and thus the stagnation.

    Reply
    • That’s an interesting note; for the past year, after an HED (after an ED), I was convinced of everything wrong with me: irregular blood sugar levels, hypothyroid symptoms, PCOS, liver problems, B-12 deficiencies, etc. Yet all the labs (even full thyroid panel) showed I had no medical reason to feel dizzy, puffy, bloated, gassy, lethargic, weak, and moody.
      I have been seeing an acupuncturist for 6 weeks; something told me I had some sort of adrenal fatigue (as adrenals regulate water balance) that I could not recuperate from myself. It was confirmed that my ‘kidney pulse’ was very very weak for someone my age.
      I have been continuing to rest and limit exercise and eat real food and energy balance is really coming back; I am not as puffy either. I may have come upon this myself in due time, but I didn’t notice any differences until I started getting the TCM treatment with chinese herbs. Not saying this is for everyone, but it is working for me, somehow. Stress relief is my personal answer. And I don’t mean doing yoga once a week. I mean a conscious, hourly effort to only push myself only as much as my body can take (sometimes even reading is too much, and I just need quiet in the sun). Our bodies really need a lot more than we think sometimes. After being in a state of stress for 20 years (my sudden weight gain and anxiety began when I was 8 years old) I’m really learning to unwind. It’s been harder than I ever imagined, and I feel like I’ll need another year to feel like I have true energy again to lift weights or do sprints, but I don’t mind waiting at all.

      Reply
  16. I am a before. I was LC for a long time then went HED, gained 20 unsightly pounds, and now I'm trying to do even higher carb with lower fat to maybe lose some of the gained fat. At no time have I ever felt real energy, not with LC, not with HED and not now. Which means I usually end up turning to caffeine, which makes sleep worse and it's a vicious cycle. I am on armour and have a normal complete thyroid panel, but no way do I FEEL normal. I am doing starch carbs by the way, because even one medium serving of fruit makes me insane, ravenous to the point of not being able to seel sated no matter what I do, and threatens my sobriety from alcohol and binging. And I have tried easing into it. It just doesn't ever change get better with the fruit. I want to be an after and actually feel some energy in my body? Any suggestions? …S.

    Reply
  17. Armpit – I have yet to find specific food triggers – but I do know I am intolerant to caffeine and hard liquor (small glass of wine once a week is fine). Before I d'xd with Hashi, I went through tremendous amount of interpersonal stress, plus trying to hold down a part-time job, plus attend college FT, and learning a parent had a major illness. That is when the Hashi manifested as Hyper.

    I was misdiagnosed as just plain Hyper and given PTU (Still wish I could get personal or financial retribution on the Endocrinologist who did that to me…but I digress.) He was "shocked" that it worked within two months. Bang, I gained 20 pounds and felt miserable. Correct D'xd as Hashi a few months later. Never was on synthroid (Good Dr. that time!) but did struggle with symptoms of Hypo for a while. Got back my mojo within the last 18 months or so.

    Also – I have tried gluten removal and challenges to no difference whatsoever. Negative on all celiac testing.

    Reply
  18. Has anyone else grown breast tissue? I used to be puffy when I was recovering from an ED. Now my face looks normal, but unfortunately I lost breast tissue in the ED and it never regrew :-( I wish it would. I didn't think that ever actually happened. Matt, if you could develop that sort of Rrarf diet, I would be ever grateful!

    Reply
  19. I found these pics years ago researching my husbands health issues and it was because of them that I became convinced he was hypothyroid! We had to fight for the right treatment but his results were just as remarkable as these photos!!

    Reply
    • Hello so what was the “right treatment”. I have the fluffy face weight gain etc. I’m on Armour but still have the symptoms. What helped your husband?
      Many thanks

      Reply
  20. Thanks, Anna. I suspect that something might be wrong with my thyroid (have been getting a hoarse voice quite often lately without being sick or having talked too much).

    Reply
  21. So at what point should a person get on meds for thyroid, or just keep working on diet/lifestyle?

    Reply
  22. of course i'm reading, matt. i'm all up in your shit like a probiotic. i had to do a doubletake there, though, cuz its been a while since someone used my real name :)

    i' actually at 175 now, but still wear size small tshirts, and i'm probably around an 8-10 in pants. although VLC eating lead me to gain about 3 inches in my hips, i'm currently sporting a pair of leggings i bought in the girls section of kmart.

    a lot of women out there do not realize that there gets to a point where can be a huge difference between getting smaller and getting leaner, and keep focusing on the former when they really should be doing the latter. it took me a good 4 years to figure that out.

    not to postjack, but hey, you started it.

    Reply
    • Batty: How tall are you?? sounds too dreamy to be true that you’re in a small shirt and leggins!! ahhh!! :) I’m guessing you’re in the 5’9″ range? Just checking. I know there’s no hope of looking lean when you’re a shortcake like me at that weight. I’ve tried! LOL!

      Reply
      • That’s an old post so I don’t know how much of a reply you’ll get out of batty. But you can stalk her on facebook. She’s a super cool lady. Her name is Amanda Batty Wolf (Moose) on facebook.

        Reply
  23. Just a personal observation. I went to school with this girl who was always very pretty. The last time I saw her, her face didn't look right. It was like her eyebrows were lower, closer to her eyes. She is a physical therapist and now a personal trainer as well. I was IF'ing at the time and she was saying that most people probably don't need to eat more than 1 or 2 meals a day and I agreed, LOL! She seemed smaller too. She was never fat, but she seemed smaller all over, maybe shorter too.

    Reply
  24. Anonymous S-

    I hear you on the fruit. I know some can just start throwing some fruit into the diet and it's no big deal. But I have crazy things happen if I eat fruit in a certain context – like as a dessert for a heavy-ish mixed meal.

    If I eat fruit by itself I do fine. But if I don't I start to have runaway hunger that peaks in the evening with an insatiable desire to keep eating and eating, trouble falling asleep I'm so hungry, and waking up at 4am with hypoglycemia-like symptoms.

    Only when my fruit intake eclipses a very large portion of my total diet do the benefits start to take place without the drawbacks (like tooth pain, increased hunger, increased fat, lethargy, anxiety, sleep problems, bleeding gums, zits).

    If you want to try it, try eating only fruits, 50-50 diluted juices, and starches like rice, potatoes, beans with no added fat or meat until your hunger goes down. It might take a while, but within a week you'll probably start to lose the strong desire to eat something else. At that point you can start slowly working other things into your diet. To me, this is a much better approach than trying to slowly add fruit, which simply doesn't work for those who have this same kind of reaction. I can totally see how this could trigger a desire to binge on alcohol. It's a gnawing emotional sensation in search of satisfaction.

    But I think many won't be able to feel the best they are capable of feeling without simple sugars in the diet. Instead of eating fruit and seeing that it doesn't work and omitting the fruit, think of tweaking your diet in ways that make fruit work. For me, this only works when the total percentage of fruit in the diet becomes very high. But it's quite invigorating to eat fruit in such large quantities if you ask me. Certainly worth a trial run.

    Reply
  25. Kitchen Recovery-

    The important thing is to take action. If a person has puffiness in the face and a persistent low body temperature with lots of hypothyroid symptoms, it's important to try to tweak diet and lifestyle first – because odds are diet and lifestyle caused or is causing the problem, and fixing the root problem is always the smartest strategy.

    But not everyone can solve their problems this way. If body temperature and signs of hypothyroidism don't clear up after a couple years of experimentation, I would think that it's time to pursue desiccated thyroid supplementation. But note, this is not foolproof either.

    Reply
    • Hello I see that these Re very old posts but I am excited for I have had this puffiness of the face weight gain an swelling all of these symptoms for years. I’m on nature thyroid have tried the Wilson’s thing but still have all the awful symptoms. I want my face and body back. I can’t get quite enough info from this stream of posts-everyone seems to know what they are talking about. Please help me find the way to get better?

      Reply
  26. Amy-

    Several people have regrown breast tissue. I know Hawaiigirl has mentioned this, but so have a few others.

    Left armpit-

    Yes. The shine, thickness, and texture of hair often changes radically when thyroid is returned to its ideal levels. Hair is a good monitor of overall health.

    Barbie-

    Nice work sleuth.

    Reply
  27. um is it just me or, fig 1 e is HOT!!!!

    Reply
  28. It should be noted fig. 1e was given estrogen in addition to thyroid and I'm sure that accounted for most of the breastage.

    Matt, I think I am too scared for the gonzo fuit experiment. It took me 30 years to get over alcoholism and bulimia, so that's a lot to put on the line. Maybe if others with similar histories reported results. Thanks….S.

    Reply
  29. what would you recommend for someone with cushings syndrome? This person had a tumor in their brain and then cortisol levels through the roof. They had surgery to remove the tumor but cortisol levels didn't drop and now tumor is coming back.

    Is hypothyroidism still apart of the picture?

    Reply
  30. Hello from my crazy ass vacation! Missed the riots in Vancouver but was there for games 5 &6, young male energy was through the roof!!!
    On topic , puffiness plauges me and I am puzzled by it. Could it be an aging thyroid / menpause deal combo platter? I have to say that I had no puffiness on raw vegan ever. High fruit is looking good and some of that thyroid shit. Also , my temps are high and I sweat every night but it is a leukemia/ menopause issue IMO. It is also fucking annoying.
    I know you missed me and my cougar talk!
    Xo. Hag

    Reply
  31. By the way, this is a different Anonymous, lol.

    Nuff said, I send a three flyin through the air, and you come out of nowhere and dunk my shot. I was bout to say:

    That third picture from the bottom is pretty sexy.

    lol, we can't all get a joke in I guess. At least I get to dunk all of Matt's 3's when he ain't suspectin it. (Insert 80's joke or Mike Tyson quote here)

    Reply
  32. Also, i want that pic from paleo fail on a poster and a t-shirt. Well matt? You gonna sell me some merchandise or what?

    Reply
  33. In your free ebook you say to consume refined coconut oil rather than extra virgin. Why so?

    Thanks.

    Reply
    • I think I need this book? How do I get it?

      Reply
        • Wow thank you so much for the quick reply!

          Reply
        • Are these books for healing the puffy/face/body? I’m not over weight but have these symptoms of facial/body swelling low temp/especially the face thing/bloats belly etc
          Thank you

          Reply
          • These books are a good place to start with for anyone seeking health improvements. The metabolic rate affects all functioning within the body and optimizing it clears associated issues in many cases. And even if full resolution requires more targeted intervention, doing everything we can to get a low metabolism up lays the groundwork for better addressing any remaining issues. So yes, I think these books would help for the symptoms you describe

          • Thank you so much Rob, I’ll check them out.

  34. MATT-

    I actually found these exact same pictures over a year and a half ago, when I was researching some of the symptoms I had. They were really a goldmine to me, back then. It made me start thinking (I know, craziness).
    I believe I have went through all the stages of puffiness. After years of low carb and a full year of VLC, my face got round and puffy, I actually developed a small buffalo hump (like the one you get with Cushing's). Started gaining weight around my midsection and lost muscle. I showed all the signs of high cortisol/hypothyroidism. It's actually quite fascinating how much it can change your appearance. I couldn't recognize myself anymore.

    Reply
    • So what did you do that made you better?

      Reply
  35. James, refined tastes better and is still intact as coconut oil is so saturated it isn't harmed by refining (at least cold-pressed)

    Reply
  36. oh and it's a lot cheaper

    Reply
  37. Snip from Matt- "If you want to try it, try eating only fruits, 50-50 diluted juices, and starches like rice, potatoes, beans with no added fat or meat until your hunger goes down. It might take a while, but within a week you'll probably start to lose the strong desire to eat something else. At that point you can start slowly working other things into your diet."

    This is exactly the kind of advice I needed! Next week is the start of a religious fast in which I will participate the first time. Basic parameters are vegan with a few fish-allowed days thrown in. Oddly, seafood/shellfish are allowed on almost all days. [Orthodox Christians, for the curious.]

    Anyhow – I was really grooving on the high fruit idea just for the ease and simplicity of not having to worry about 1-2 meals of the day. Husband is on board with the fruit-for-breakfast idea. Bake taters or make simple dahl & rice for dinner. DONE!

    Reply
  38. Veiled Glory,

    For more info on fruit, check out the recent posts on castlegrok. He has the kind of pointers you're looking for. (It's not different from Matt's advice, just more of the same.)

    Reply
  39. Thanks, Jim! Good advice, good timing.

    Reply
  40. Thanks Ivan :-) That was the best summation of the conclusions I have reached. I don't feel so alone now in saying no to the Cheez.

    Reply
  41. LOL. I love your nonsensical theories. RRARF has basically become "Eat whatever Matt thinks is cool this week." Should be called the EWMTICTW diet. What a joke, but certainly very entertaining. I read your blog faithfully just to see what junk you are promoting next. SKCUS TTAM!

    Reply
  42. KARN-

    “Once we accept that knowledge is tentative, and that we are probably going to improve our knowledge in important ways when we learn more about the world, we are less likely to reject new information that conflicts with our present ideas."

    Reply
  43. Anyone know if this is what powerlifters have? Or are they all puffed up because they're just fat?

    Reply
  44. The doc and I adjusted my levels over 3 years but I never really got relief from symptoms. I also tried the Wilson t3 therapy for 4 rounds but my temp barely rose, never did get to 98.6. I am completely off Armour since mid-Ray May and my temps are up: morning 97.4 to 97.8 axillary AM, up to 98.3 axillary during the day with no cold hands or feet but I still have problems with swollen face and feet in the AM. Not bad swelling by any means, just a little. But never did I experience anything as dramatic as those pics.

    Reply
  45. My bust has increased on RARRF :-) ("I must I must I must increase my bust"). I'm 5'6'' female, had baby #2 in Jan. 10. Stressful year, couldn't lose the baby weight, forced it down to 149 with all the usual cardio, weights, restricted calories, vegan, raw, paleo, etc. (it was like my whole dietary life on speed for a year) nothing worked. Then I found 180. Started RARRFing in May. Up to 159 now, but holding steady. Temps in the morning about 97.4, up to 98 in the afternoon (even during the first half of my cycle!). And, my bust went from 36'' to 37'' (plus they look better after bfing 2 babies). Thanks Matt! with A history of ED it is very hard for me to sit at a heavy weight, I feel so fat, but mentally I feel good (done with dieting) and hoping the weight will start coming off. I'm starting to feel more motivated and having the energy to start a bit of exercise again (leisure walking 2-3x week, weights or bodyweight circuit 2x week). Some supplemental aminos (via Julia ross) have really helped with my sleep and my obsessions, on top of the relief rarrf mentality had already given me. Now I'm tweaking further eliminating fructose and pufa, feeling much better (esp. sleep, waking more well rested). So, fingers crossed, and in the meantime enjoying eating the fucking food.

    Reply
  46. Karn-

    If you think my theories are nonsensical, just you wait until I start blogging about RBTI. Wow. You are gonna love it!!!

    Jessica-

    Nice.

    Reply
  47. JUst about to get kicked out of library, on the road…
    But Amy, I've definitely grown my breasts back. They tended to be full before the worst of my ED, so even at 75lbs I had 'something,' and now they're really bigger than I'd prefer them to be (I like small breasts)–but other people seem to think they look good.

    To anonymous with the fruit problems: I'm wondering whether there is something to that notion of flushing pufas first and then trying fruit? I used to eat all fruit, then went carbophobic for a few years. The last several months I did high starch and all my hypoglycemia went away. I used not to be able to eat an orange without instant reactive hypoglycemia. Now I've gone back to fruit, and I can drink a pint of OJ and feel great. I hope that maybe the same might hold for you with time?

    Reply
    • What did you do that helped with your breasts/health?

      Reply
    • Yeah I’ll second that- after years of restriction, my boobs were looking much sadder compared to their former glorious selves (though, with the aid of a good padded bra noone would have been able to tell quite how much difference from the outside). After several months of refeeding, I am again struggling to find a sports bra with the industrial strength necessary… breast tissue is extremely responsive to hormone levels!!

      Reply
  48. Thanks for the fruit advice Ela. I doubt there is much pufa left in me as I have been a meat/veg/dairy paleo, actively avoiding PUFA for 10+ years. I had a small glass of OJ by itself today and got tremors from that even. I could hear Matt's voice saying, have 10 more glasses! But it took me forever to 'come down' from that, and the threat of a manic episode looms large. ….S.

    Reply
  49. Sheila,

    I agree fully,and well said. I am here for the entertainment, not knowledge. I do enjoy Matt's thoughts and willingness to test on himself, I just wouldn't base my eating decisions on his randomly shifting hypotheses.

    Matt,

    I can't wait for RRARFPEATRBTI, I'm sure it will be a hoot!

    Reply
  50. Can't keep up with all the acronyms, whats the latest one RBTI??

    thanks matt for the post through to batty's site. had a look round at the strong not skinny post and also the previous one with a pic of Gwyneth paltrow who I have always really liked, but followed a link to another post and saw her incredible diet and daily exercise routine and really felt pity for this very intelligent, beautiful and down to earth woman. She was eating no more than 950 cals a day and eating kale at every meal, mostly in the form of some kind of shake, and working out with 2 hours of cardio a day, holding 3 pound weights! then it said apparently she is in the initial stages of osteoporosis.

    The insanity of the thinness that woman have to achieve to make it into the likes of Iron man movie, where she teeters about on 6 inch heels and looks so thin you nearly miss her when she turns on the side.

    I am also inspired to try and start doing some push ups and pull ups now, as don't belong to a gym. I have found that I cannot even do a single push up, pretty lame, so have a long way to go. But am feeling lots of energy to burn from rrarf style eating for around 8 months now, after a bout of low carb that lasted no more than 6 months luckily before i found this site.

    enjoying the community here, long time lurker, infrequent poster.

    Reply
  51. I strongly believe that hypothyroidism can be overlooked but it is easy to treat with natural thyroid supplements .

    Reply
  52. I dont know if its been pointed out or not yet, but the woman who grew breasts and had a change in body shape was also on estrogen. This is explained on other websites where the picture was taken. They gave her estrogen to push her into puberty, which was stunted by the hypothyroidism.

    Reply
  53. I am thrilled to have found this website and the pictures. Finally lightbulbs are going off in my head and I know what to do. Too bad my mom is already dead and I can’t help her, she resembled the lady with the bun, coarse hair and all. Her hypothyroidism was very gradual and I think it killed her in the end, though she died of an infection. My TSH is at 1.77 after recovering from a Lithium treatment (biggest mistake of my life, worse than some of the boyfriends). I am now on the road to a self medicated recovery, lost a bunch of Lithium weight, still very sick, but functional and am ordering Thyroid S from amazon. By the way the Lithium doc said my Thyroid was perfectly healthy on Lithium, I don’t know, maybe he didn’t see the goiter under all my extra weight? I can’t deal with this rolly polly body and face and I want to eat finally, Sucks to starve and be a fatty at the same time. Enough is enough. No wonder I am so tired, alright off to self medicating!

    Reply
    • Annie, so sorry to hear about your horrible experience
      With lithium. :( dr Ray Peat has som fascinating articles on lithium/thyroid/mental illness. http://Www.raypeat.com. Check out the article ” thyroid, insomnia and the insanities”. Again, thanks to Matt for introducing me to this person of such great knowledge.

      Reply
  54. THIS WAS SO HELPFUL.

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  55. I was looking at images on this page of posts and was very disappointed to see very fat cats. This makes me think these articles were not very well researched, because cats do not become hypothyroid. When cats have a thyroid problem it is always hyperthyroid unless medically induced by treating hyperthyroid with too high a dose of meds. Dogs on the other hand only experience hypothyroidism, never hyperthyroidism, unless given too high a dose of Synthroid. The images of these poor obese cats shows me that they are only fed dry food. Canned food is usually about 85% water. If you reduce the dry food to only a small amount and feed canned food your cat will lose weight. This is a slow process for cats because you can’t exercise them very well, but the fat will go. Veterinary Clinic

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  56. It isn’t necessary to use the word “retarded” – please work on your vocabulary skills. http://r-word.org

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    • It’s not from a lack of vocabulary, just an adoration of the word.

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      • You know, sometimes nothing descibes a thing or situation like the word retarded. I understand it can be offensive to some, but why does it have to be offensive in every situation? I might say that a couch is ugly, so does that mean that the mother behind me with the ugly kid should get pissed off because I may have been referring to her kid? Why do we always have to be so sensitive? The whole situation is fucking retarded if you ask me

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        • Thank you Susan for appreciating my many forms of expression. Sensitive indeed.

          Reply
  57. Trying to find help with this puffy face & hands, feet… Weight up & down… Have had the symptoms for years. Wonderful to see someone knows what the symptoms are about because for years docs just scratch their heads over the bloated stomach & face.
    So what do I do to get better?

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  58. Armour thyroid never worked for me. I started taking cytomel which is straight T3 and it changed my life. I have had thyroid issues for 20 years and I never got the help I needed despite having seen probably 10 naturopaths and holistic MD’s. I learned about cytomel from Dr Ray Peat who I learned about from Matt. It literally changed my life. Ita obvious armour does not work for you so get off of it and try cytomel. It’s sad it took 20 years of me suffering before I finally got it from my PSYCHIATRiST. Yep, I had to ask her for it. She was totally on board since no antidepressants could cute my depression and armor thyroid didn’t do crap for me.

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  59. Sorry if my post sounded weirdly hostile. I was directing it at someone (not hostility ) at someone who had posted about taking armour thyroid but still felt terrible, slept horribly etc… Cytomel is literally the most amazing drug I’ve ever taken. It has changed my life. I’m far from 100% but no longer feel like I’m dying 99.9% of the time. Probably would have been a little easier for me to get through medical school had I known how f’d my thyroid was (no, a TSH of 6 is not “reasonable”). Doctors basically learn nothing in med school.

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  60. I wake up with a swollen face every morning, I have thyroid, not the one related to iodine or neck. I also have spinal code / sirvical problem what tests should I get done??? Please advice at your earliest.

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  61. Now I really want an opinion.
    When I was 6 years old I started having acne. Just acne.
    Ok, so, 2 years later, a doctor said I had adrenal hyperplasia and I started a treatment with hydrocortisone acetate.
    My weight went from 58 kg to 51 kg, and I didn’t do anything to lose it. I remember quite well. My mood got better, I started to be less shy and to socialize more. Of course, I thought this was unrelated.
    Last year, a very respected doctor here in Brazil analyzed my history and said that, actually, I’ve never had adrenal hyperplasia. I stopped having medication.
    Back to where I started. I gained weight even with my very-vegetarian-balanced-food-habits and all the exercises I did.
    So there I go, to the doctor again.
    The new doctor I went said I have hypothyroidism. And yes, my face has always been very swollen, specially my eyes- but everyone said it was something I inherited from father. And my cheeks, even when I was very thin, they were very full.
    My memory problem and depression are the worst. And my life is so damn the way I wanted now, so damn good, I know ( and my psychologist can prove it) I don’t have anything to complain about.
    So, if I really do have hypothyroidism, why the hydrocortisone acetate worked for me back then? May I have hypothyroidism caused by the adrenal disfunction? How could I prove something like that in an exam, I mean, how can I differ having an thyroid problem or an adrenal problem – or both?
    And now, just to finish the big text, if there is someone who could give me some tips, about the swollen, about the weight gain, does it take too long to go away after starting treatment?

    Reply
    • The thyroid and adrenals are incredibly interrelated in many ways. Also, the symptoms of cortisol excess overlap the many problems of thyroid shortage.

      Reply
      • Thank you very much for the reply! :) So would you say, if you please, I should ask my doctor about restarting taking hydrocortisone acetate? – because I am just treating with the Euthyrox.

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  62. The best approach to thyroid disease I’ve found, specifically Hashimoto’s, is from a book I found on Amazon by weeding out books about hypothyroidism by reviews: Why Do I Still Have Thyroid Symptoms When My Lab Tests are Normal. I highly recommend this book. Be careful what you attempt and make sure you research before you try things that may or may not seem obvious…iodine, for example, usually exacerbates symptoms in the long run. Please be careful.

    Reply
  63. Help!
    I just skimmed through these posts, hoping to find some answers. There is so much conflicting information on the web and I don’t know what a lot of the acronyms stand for. I know hypothyroidism is very tricky to treat, but just really don’t know what I should be doing.
    I first suspected hypothyroidism while looking into post-partum issues online. My 2 biggest concerns are changes in my skin and depression. When I looked into dry skin and breastfeeding, that is where I found that hypothyroidism may be the culprit…..and along with the other symptoms listed, it made sense. So I went in and got tested and my physician prescribed the lowest dose of Armour which hasn’t done anything and it’s been 5 weeks now.
    I also understand that blood work isn’t reliable, so I am awaiting results from a hair analysis. I found some great information from the lab’s website and they referred me to a practitioner who is going to help me with diet among other things, once we have the results.
    I am just so frustrated and freaked out by my appearance!! This has aged me dramatically. I am not swollen at all, just saggy and tired looking. If anything, I look thin, wrinkly and just unhealthy. I do have a long history of eating disorders, smoked and drank alcohol, had 5 kids, went through divorce and have been in a difficult relationship for the past two years.(my gosh! I sound like trailer trash Barbie!!) I was also a triathlete for a few years, so in all fairness, this may very well be the result of not taking care of my body, but these changes have developed so rapidly!!
    I just want some answers and guidance. I am really afraid about what is happening to me.
    Matt, if you’re still around, will you please email me? I would appreciate it very much!!
    Thank you!!
    ~C

    Reply

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