There is hope for patients with low thyroid function and its a "little pig in a blanket!" Most hypothyroid patients come to me already prescribed the typical thyroid medications such as Synthroid, Levoxyl, or the generic levothyroxine. In 2008 alone, doctors wrote over 34,000 prescriptions for the generic levothyroxine and over 31,000 prescriptions for the most popular brand name Synthroid, which ranked the 4th and 5th most prescribed medication, respectively. This combines for over a billion (with a "b") dollars in sales for this type of medication. Yet most of these patients, and you may be one of them, still have no significant relief and still suffer with fatigue, dry skin, thinning hair, constipation, and weight gain. But there is a different form of thyroid medication available...something that has been around for a very long time...something not only natural but highly effective at relieving the symptoms of someone with low thyroid function. Read on...
I have found that the best type of thyroid hormone for most patients is natural dessicated thyroid hormone, such as Armour®, Nature Throid® or Westthroid®. This type of thyroid hormone medication comes from a porcine (pig) source and is considered natural. This type of medication has been around since the 1930's and has a long history of effectiveness and safety. The vast majority of patients will do better on this tried and tested medication. Armour has the longest track record and is the most commonly known natural thyroid medication. Nature Throid, made by RLC labs in Scottsdale, Arizona has been responsible for making high quality, hypoallergenic natural thyroid hormone medication for years, under the alternative and original name Westthroid. Dr West created the original formula in the 1930's to be a cleaner alternative to Armour thyroid. Nature Throid and Westthroid have the same exact formulation, just different names.
Natural desiccated thyroid hormone contains a complete array of thyroid hormones including the main thyroid hormones T4 and T3, and even T2, T1, and T0 (or tyrosine). T2 has limited activity and has been studied, and T1 and T0 have no “known” function but still make the product holistically complete and more bioavailable and absorbable. Most products that are closer to nature have a more complete effect on the human system. This is true of botanical (herbal) medicines that contain known “active” ingredients (that are often put into prescription medications) but also other naturally occurring substances that synergistically work in concert with the entire botanical medicine, making it more effective and ultimately possessing less side effects. Natural desiccated thyroid hormone medication works in much the same way.
Another reason for the effectiveness of natural desiccated thyroid medications is due to the presence of a key thyroid hormone, T3, or triiodothyronine. T3 is the most potent, active form of thyroid hormone, and delivers the best results for most patients. Typical medications such as Synthroid, Levoxyl, and the generic levothyroxine offer only the inactive thyroid hormone, T4. Many patients have poor clinical results on T4-only medication and will not fully improve from their hypothyroid (low thyroid) symptoms.