Vitamin D deficiency

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Hi.  I was diagnosed hypothyroid about three years ago and have been on varying doses of Levothyroxine ever since.  I was eventually fairly stable, (three-monthly blood tests) but then a lot of the original symptoms returned - utter fatigue and lethargy, painful and aching joints, weight gain, dry brittle hair - and palpitations on a daily basis etc etc.  I went back to my GP and said I wanted to have a moan about my thyroid because I was feeling so rubbish.  She sat back in her chair, said 'Moan away' and listened.  At the end of my whinge, she said she wanted me to have further blood tests to check my Cortisol and Vitamin D levels.  The Cortisol result was fine but she said I was quite badly deficient in Vitamin D.  For those who don't know, some hypothyroid people cannot absorb enough of this Vitamin (which I believe is actually a hormone) from natural sources.  So I immediately started a high dosage, six-week course of Ergocalciferol (Vit D + calcium) and within a few days I was feeling so much better.  The palpitations had stopped, my joint pain was easing and the extreme fatigue too.  Now, six weeks on, the doc has put me on a maintenance dose of Vit D and calcium, I am feeling so much better and my hair has even started growing again.  One thing that hasn't changed is my weight but that's an issue for another day.  The reason for this post is to say - if you are hypothyroid, taking levothyroxine and still feeling rubbish, consider asking your doc to have you tested for Vit D deficiency.  It might not be the answer, but it's certainly worth a try.  

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  • Posted

    I  was the same and take extra Vitamin D but not the calcium as I am borderline Hyperparathyroid and a high calcium reading in the blood is a sign of that . It may be a good idea to have your calcium level checked as well as the Vitamin D 
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    • Posted

      Yes, I had my calcium level checked too - it was fine, which was a relief as I wondered how long I'd been Vit D deficient and how much damage that might have done to my bones.  
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  • Posted

    Hi Tris----everything is so connected isn't it.  We had a gloomy & snowy winter & so my skin didn't see much sun light.  I am chronically low on the D.  I am now on 4000 un of D.  I will have to ask for a bloodtest.  I feel somewhat improved since the thyroid is almost right (working on that).   I had every symptom you described.

    Equilibrium is off right now I believe due to having some dizziness.

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    • Posted

      Hi Marie.  I never realised how complicated the thyroid was until recently.  When first diagnosed, I thought that taking the thyroxine would solve it completely - I'd feel better overnight and the weight would drop off.  If only!!!  I was totally unaware of all the other side issues.  I spend quite a lot of time outside and eat healthily so Vit D deficiency wasn't something I'd ever considered.  Certainly I experienced dizziness - well, more like lightheadedness and a spaced out feeling really - so maybe you should get your Vit D level checked out again.

       

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    • Posted

      Marie, I am taking 'Fultium D3'. Initially I was prescribed a very high dose of 'Ergocalciferol' - two tablets of 250mcg (20,000 units each) - once a week for six weeks .  I'm now on one tablet of 20mcg (800 units) 'Fultium D3' each day during the summer and have to increase it to two during the winter months.  It's a combination of Vit D and Calcium and only available on prescription.  I'm not sure if there is an alternative over-the-counter medication but I'd urge you to get your levels checked first anyway.
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  • Posted

    Great post. Similar to what happened to me, my thyroid test came back 'within normal range ' I was falling asleep on the sofa everyday, if i knelt on the floor it was a struggle to get up again, aching and muscle weakness and lots of other symptoms that are related to thyroid issues. I asked my gp for a vitamin check and I was vitD deficient. A week later on supplements I started feeling a bit better and 2 months later I can move and feel alive. Not perfect but compared to how I was feeling its fantastic. Hope this helps other people too.
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    • Posted

      Sounds oh-so-familiar wendolph.  Glad you're feeling the benefit of the VitD supplement too.
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    • Posted

      I agree about the fatigue.  I walked around in a fog & was so exhausted (some is still present but for other reasons).  If you look into the Endocrine system & how it works it is facinating.  I went from hypothyroid had to take 125mcg.  Now Im a little hyper & doc wants me to alternate between 112mcg to 125mcg.  Not sure I am in agreement but will give it a try.  Had two days was instructed to take no meds. 

      Will get blood test again 2months (I think)...will get D tested too.

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  • Posted

    Hello Tris:

    I am an RN and live in the USA.  I also have Hashimoto's Thyroid Disease.  I also have low Vitamin D.  There is a linkage to people who have low thyroid also having low Vitamin D.  Also as we age, we lose the ability to convert Sunlight into Vitamin D in our bodies.  We also do not get enough from diet.

    Having proper Minerals, like iron, magnesium, calcium, zinc, potassium help with the replacement hormone and help to keep the body working well.  Low Vit. D can make you have brittle bones and headaches, muscle aches, and feeling awful. 

    It can be replaced by supplements and are available in most stores.  So I agree, everyone esp. people who have thyroid problems, should get tested for low Vitamin D.  Glad you are felling better.    Shelly

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    • Posted

      Hi Shelly

      I've considered taking magnesium and zinc supplements, but wondered if it was sensible to just buy them from a store without a doctor's advice.  Is it possible for the body to have too much of these minerals or do we just excrete the excess as we do with Vitamin C?  Tris 

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    • Posted

      Hello Tris:

      Yes we excrete vitamins via urine and feces.  Iron is lost when we have a period.  Iron is very important in making new RBC's (red blood cells) which prevents anemia, and Zinc protects your immune system. You can take a little extra but just having the proper levels will help.

      Since most of the vitamins  are available without a prescription, it is up to you.  It can't hurt having the recommended amounts.

      Taking a multi-vitamin should be good, however for Vitamin D 2000 IU (International units) is what we need for replacement  per my Doctor.  I take a Women's Multi-vitamin which has 1000 IU of Vitamin D and extra  1000 IU D.  We all need a proper balance in our body and having the minerals in good order helps so much. 

      Look at the labels on the vitamins and compare them.  Most are meeting the recommended levels.  If you can eat Strawberries, as they are loaded with Zinc.  Magnesium helps with leg pains and nerve pains.  I hope this helps.  Shelly

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    • Posted

      Hi Shelly.  Sorry, I missed your reply until now. Thanks for the info. I might give magnesium and zinc supplements a try.  However, I would point out that if anyone is taking Ergocalciferol - or Fultium as I am, which contains Calcium - it's important to check the contents of any off-the-shelf multi-vitamin to make sure that Calcium is not included as too much is dangerous.  

      I've only been taking the prescribed reduced dose of 800 IU daily for a few days since I finished the initial six weeks' course of 40,000, so it'll be interesting to see if I continue to feel well.  Tris

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    • Posted

      Hi everyone, I'd just like to add to Shelley' s post to add a bit more detail. Vitamin A can be toxic in high doses (when I was pregnant, the advice was to not to eat liver more than once a week because of the high vitamin A levels found in it). Fat-soluble vitamins are stored in the liver and adipose (fat) tissue when not used. Megadoses of vitamins A, D, E or K can be toxic and lead to health problems, hence for these vitamins it is important to measure levels regularly using a blood test.
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    • Posted

      Magnesium and vit D are essential nutrients that are required to help the body absorb calcium. My understanding is that it's not the calcium itself that causes problems, but that it isn't used by the body if the levels of the other vitamins and minerals are low. Hence the need to have everything in balance and be monitored if there's a deficiency and one is taking high doses of supplements. I've been taking 'dolomite' (high source of calcium snd magnesium for 30 years and the only effect of this, is a 10% better than average reading on the bone density charts). I also take a multi-vitamin. Zinc is also essential for thyroid and eye health. For latter, look up AREDS trial, where research has been proven that extra zinc is useful but harmful if one smokes. (Research has recently found a link with the immune system and macular degeneration -so look out for this by going for yearly eye sight checks.)
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