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Armour Thyroid and Weight Loss

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If you’ve recently put on a little weight that no amount of dieting or exercise seems to burn off, then the problem may not be with your lifestyle; you may have an under-active thyroid.

Your thyroid gland is the main component in regulating your body’s metabolism.  Hypothyroidism is when your thyroid gland isn’t producing enough of the hormones your body needs in order to function.

These hormones, called triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4), support a number of bodily processes, including the production of important neurotransmitters, the regulation of your temperature, and your ability to convert calories into energy (a.k.a. your metabolism).

A slower metabolism means your body is burning fewer calories when at rest, which means that more of those calories get stored as fat.

If a condition like hypothyroidism is behind your weight gain, then medications like Armour Thyroid may be able to help.

What is Armour Thyroid?

Armour Thyroid is an all-natural thyroid replacement medication that is derived from porcine adrenal glands.  It is most commonly prescribed for hypothyroidism, but can also be used to treat goiters (enlarged thyroid glands), nodular thyroid disease, and thyroid cancer[i].  Generally, this type of medication is referred to as a natural desiccated thyroid drug, or NDT.

Armour Thyroid contains both the biologically active form of thyroid hormone (T3), along with the biologically inactive (T4); because of this, many patients report feeling an improvement in their symptoms within an hour or so of taking a dose.

The T3 provides more immediate relief while the T4, which takes time to process into T3 inside the body, offers more long-term thyroid regulation.

Because of Armour Thyroid’s classification as an NDT, some doctors may be reluctant to prescribe it over a laboratory-created artificial thyroid replacer like Synthroid or Cytomel.  However, Armour Thyroid has seen a high level of success among many thyroid patients, and is especially popular with those who prefer more natural or holistic therapies[ii].

How Can Armour Thyroid Help Weight Loss?

Armour Thyroid is designed to have a much more immediate effect on improving thyroid function, which means that patients may notice a quicker increase in their metabolism than with other artificial thyroid replacers.

A quicker metabolism means that your body is going through more calories at rest, which will help spur weight loss.  This is usually a result from the body’s correction of hypothyroid symptoms.

As a result of an increased metabolic rate, patients may notice an increase in energy levels and a decrease in appetite, both of which will help contribute to weight loss.  Armour Thyroid is known to sometimes help reduce food cravings that cause weight gain.

However, while Armour Thyroid has been linked with minor weight loss in patients, it should not be taken as an energy supplement or diet pill, particularly if you do not suffer from hypothyroidism.

Inducing higher-than-normal levels of thyroid hormones in your body can lead to a reverse condition called hyperthyroidism, which can lead to heart palpitations, rapid weight loss (not the good kind), high levels of stress/ anxiety, thinning of skin or hair, insomnia, and more[iii].

Why Choose Armour Thyroid Over Other Thyroid Medications?

As mentioned before, Armour Thyroid is a naturally derived prescription medication, which some patients find preferable over laboratory-created artificial hormone replacers.

Additionally, it is estimated that up to 15% of hypothyroid patients have difficulty tolerating thyroid replacement drugs that only deliver the T4 hormone, such as Synthroid (levothyroxine) or Cytomel (liothyronine)[iv].

These are generally patients whose bodies may not be capable of converting T4 into T3 at rates high enough to maintain a proper balance between the two hormones.

Armour Thyroid also tends to produce fewer side effects in patients.  Unless you are experiencing an allergic reaction to Armour Thyroid (which is uncommon), the most likely side effect would be a temporary hair loss that will self-correct over time[v].

Comparatively, synthetic hormone replacers like Synthroid can cause side effects such as fever/ sensitivity to heat, irritability, headaches, nausea, difficulty sleeping, loss of appetite, and changes in menstrual cycles[vi].

Like any other thyroid replacement medication, Armour Thyroid is a prescription that needs to be carefully monitored by your doctor to ensure that you are receiving the correct dosage for your own unique needs.

That being said, Armour Thyroid is a great choice for patients who have been taking T4 replacement medications and are still experiencing hypothyroid symptoms like low T3 levels, weight gain, or menstrual/ infertility problems[vii].

Summing it Up

If you suffer from hypothyroidism and have yet to notice any measurable benefit from taking synthetic thyroid replacers, it may be time to think about switching to Armour Thyroid.

Not everybody has the same needs, and there’s no reason to continue on a regimen that isn’t right for you.

Just remember to always consult your doctor before changing medications.

[i] https://mentalhealthdaily.com/2016/01/26/armour-thyroid-weight-loss-how-it-may-occur/

[ii] http://www.armourthyroid.com/

[iii] https://www.thyroid.org/hyperthyroidism/

[iv] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4980994/

[v] https://www.rxlist.com/armour-thyroid-side-effects-drug-center.htm#overview

[vi] https://www.rxlist.com/synthroid-side-effects-drug-center.htm

[vii] https://thyroidadvisor.com/armour-thyroid-works-dosage-side-effects-interactions/

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