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admin | Healthy Vegetables List | 26.04.2014
Last year we ran a series on “Zero-Carb Dangers,” which are health problems that can appear if carb intake – or carb+protein intake, since protein can to some degree make up for a deficit of glucose – are too low. There have been anedoctal reports on low carb forums about people becoming hypothyroid after following a low carb, high fat diet. What I will try do demonstrate here is that the sole conclusion we can draw from the literature, including the studies cited by Anthony and others, is that a high polyunsaturated fat (PUFA) diet is detrimental to thyroid health. In 1995, Vasquez et al tested four very low calorie diets, with variable amounts of carbs, fats and protein, in 48 obese women for 28 days [5]. Unfortunately we don’t have human studies comparing diets high in saturated fat and polyunsaturated fat and their effect on thyroid hormones synthesis. So the high-PUFA diet promoted weight gain: it caused excess weight to be retained at a lower calorie intake.
Since 1945, it has been known that men fed a high carbohydrate and then a high saturated fat diet needed about the same amount of calories to mantain their weight in cold temperature [18]. The high-fat diet consisted largely of butter and cream; the high-carbohydrate diet of extra sugar. So this diet which was low in carb (8% of calories) and moderately high in protein (30%) and PUFA (11%) does not seems to affect the thyroid if saturated and monosaturated fat (50% of calories) are the main fat of the diet. On the first experiment, five men consumed a high protein diet (41% P, 40% F, 19% C) and five a high carbohydrate diet (11% P, 41% F, 48% C) for 5.5 months. On the second experiment, five men consumed a high fat diet (10% P, 73% F, 17% C) and five a high carbohydrate diet (10% P, 23% F, 67% C) for 56 days.
So, if a high saturated fat diet maintains body temperature better than a high carbohydrate diet when the body is subjected to cold, it would seem fair to assume that the thyroid functions better on this high saturated fat diet. A diet with sufficient but not excess protein, moderate carbohydrate comprising a minority of calories, and high intake of saturated and monounsaturated fat but low intake of polyunsaturated fat would seem to be optimal for thyroid function. This is a late reply on this post, but I came across it in trying to understand my unexpected diagnosis of hypothyroidism. Some people with early stage hypothyroidism have been able to completely reverse the condition with iodine supplementation.
Numerous doctors, including David Brownstein and Jorge Flechas, have reported resolution of hypothyroidism (and quite a few other conditions) with the iodine protocol.


The only other interventions I’m aware of that have a track record against hypothyroidism are gluten elimination and LDN therapy. Also, my first doc didn’t test me for antibodies, which the new doc is, so I will soon find out the underlying cause of my hypothyroid, and from there, there could also be further adjustments made to my medications. Well, hopefully your doctor prescribed too much and you will find that a lower dose is best. I have seen mentioned that average joes suffered from increased recovery times while on Ketogenic diet. Probably, because (a) carbs assist recovery, (b) protein assists recovery and protein is often depleted on ketogenic diets, (c) electrolytes assist recovery and are often lost during low-carb and ketogenic diets. IGF-1 is stimulated by high-protein and high-calorie diets, and our diet generally minimizes IGF-1 levels.
Went to buy your book today but Barnes and Noble were out of stock but hope to have a copy for me by Tuesday next week.
Come to the Perfect Health RetreatCome join us for a week at the beach learning how to achieve a lifetime of great health! Buy our bookPerfect Health Diet: Regain Health and Lose Weight by Eating the Way You Were Meant to Eat is a great way to understand the dietary and nutritional practices that lead to optimal health. Anthony Colpo has recently argued that hypothyroidism should be added to the list of potential zero-carb dangers; and that low-carb high-fat diets in general might create a risk of hypothyroidism. Anthony Colpo recently wrote a blog post about carbohydrate, fat and protein intake and their effects on thyroid hormone levels, concluding that a high fat or high protein diet is detrimental and that a high carbohydrate diet is good for the thyroid [1]. There is no evidence that a diet, such as the Perfect Health Diet, that is high in saturated and monounsaturated fat, low in PUFA, and provides sufficient, moderate levels of protein and carbohydrate, has any detrimental effect on the thyroid. Reduced thyroid activity reduces energy expenditure (“calories out”) and promotes weight gain; normal thyroid function tends to promote normal weight. When eating the butter and cream, subjects had to eat more calories to maintain weight than when eating the sugary diet – 202% of baseline calorie intake vs 191%.
There was a significant increase in total T4 (+10.8%), but for some reason the researchers did not directly measure T3 nor rT3. The amount of polyunsaturated fat increased a little (from 6 to 11% of calories), but was still low; saturated and monosaturated fats were the main fats of the low carb-high fat diet.


There is good reason to believe that the modern epidemic of hypothyroidism may be in large part a result of iodine deficiency, and toxicity with the other halides that compete with it, particularly bromine.
Low carb diets do lower free T3 levels, but that appears to be an appropriate and probably healthy physiological adaptation. Conventional docs believe, with incredible assurance, that T4-only therapy is optimal for hypothyroidism. A balanced, nourishing diet will be much better for you then a lean meat and vegetables diet. But in almost all, with the exception of one study by Jeff Volek and collaborators [2], the fat used in the high fat diet was predominantly polyunsaturated fat from vegetable oils. So we can use the vast number of obesity studies as indirect evidence for the effects of different types of diet on the thyroid.
Rats fed isocaloric diets in which the fat source was varied among three groups – a beef tallow group (primarily saturated fat, 3% PUFA), an olive oil group (primarily unsaturated, 10-15% PUFA), and a safflower oil group (78% PUFA) – had highly variable weight gains.
If the LCHF diet was impairing the thyroid these healthy normal weight men, who had been advised to eat enough calories to maintain their weight during the intervention, should have struggled to lose fat mass. Low carb diets, for example, lower basal body temp, and that may be extremely healthy in fact. Lacking a thyroid you do not have the same ability other people have to adapt to extreme diets.
This suggests higher thyroid hormone levels on the high-saturated fat diet than on a high-carb diet.
The doctors who have decades of experience with properly formulated low carb and ketogenic VLC diets in thousands of patients have not observed an epidemic of thyroid damage, though perhaps for some people there could be a connection. He finds that the great majority do best on a combination of T4 and low-dose thyroid extract (or T3). The only significant change noted was a reduction in insulin following the low-carbohydrate diet.




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