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-   -   Blood Work- how does it look? (http://www.lowcarbfriends.com/bbs/thyroid/801450-blood-work-how-does-look.html)

tobelowcarber 04-06-2013 02:24 PM

Blood Work- how does it look?
TSH 1.73 (0.4-4.5 ng/dL)
T4 FREE 1.1 (0.8-1.8 ng/dL)
T3 FREE 2.1 L (2.3-4.2 ng/dL)

I don't know much about thyroid testing but requested to test T3 Free and T4Free as I read TSH alone is meaningless. Should I be concerned with the low T3? Do I need other tests? Thanks for you help.

Leo41 04-06-2013 04:01 PM


You don't take thyroid hormones, do you? You just got tested to check?

Here's the problem. With that T3, I wouldn't be able to get out of bed, my fatigue would be overwhelming.

Are you having symptoms like that?

The problem is that TSH isn't 'meaningless.' It indicates how hard your pituitary has to work to get your thyroid to produce adequate levels of hormone. A TSH that's 'high' indicates that the thyroid is not working properly because it's unresponsive to the pituitary.

The problem is that your TSH indicates that your pituitary isn't working hard at all--i.e., it seems to indicate that your thyroid is working just fine. A TSH of 3.0 or above is considered a potential for hypothyroidism, and many doctors will treat someone with a TSH of 2.0 who is also symptomatic. However, with a TSH as low as yours (unmedicated), MDs would regard the thyroid as healthy.

So why the very low T3?

That's something you need to discuss with a doctor. There are many situations in which a person's T3 will drop temporarily (e.g., critically ill patients in hospitals). There's also always the possibility of lab error. Again, I would ask my doctor because the T3 is the critical hormone that controls many bodily functions.

tobelowcarber 04-06-2013 04:22 PM

Thanks, Leo. I don't take any meds and have no symptoms of hypothyroid, just got the test to check. I have very low tolerance to cold weather but I suspect this is due to JUDD and low carbs. My only problem is that I do binge on carbs hormonally but I suspect this has nothing to do with thyroid (or perhaps it does, if it is hormonally related). So maybe I should see an endocrinologist.

Leo41 04-06-2013 05:02 PM

I really doubt that your binge behavior is due to your thyroid, but your low T3 might be from JUDDD--depending on how low you keep your calories and how often (or infrequently) you eat--because the T3 drops drastically in response to what the body perceives as 'starvation.'

I did JUDDD for almost 2 years, however, and there was no effect on my thyroid. My T3 DID 'tank'--but my endo says that's characteristic of Hashimoto's (which I have) and is entirely due to the progression of Hashi's. He loved JUDDD and said it was not a problem with my thyroid (I also low carb--very low carb).

tobelowcarber 04-07-2013 03:51 AM

Leo- that was my concern that JUDD might be suppressing my thyroid. My DD are anywhere from 400-700 cal (usually around 500).
I remember checking my TSH and T3 FREE and T4 FREE previously and they were always normal.
I just read low T3 Free could actually indicate pituitary issue more so than thyroid issue.
Maybe it was a lab error. Will have to re-check this soon.

Leo41 04-07-2013 05:41 AM

When I did JUDDD, my DDs were typically 430 and then later on 370, and I had no thyroid issues from that. Keep in mind (as Dr. J mentions), it's raising the calorie level the next day that avoids any issues with the low-calorie day.

If you've not having severe symptoms (crushing fatigue) from that low T3, you can wait. Otherwise, I'd see a doctor ASAP.

inatic 04-07-2013 01:03 PM

binge behavior is due to restriction.

tobelowcarber 04-08-2013 06:55 AM


Originally Posted by inatic (Post 16359754)
binge behavior is due to restriction.

I think you hit the nail on the head. Thank you.

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