Maintaining thyroid health involves regular testing to ensure your prescribed medication prescribed doesn’t have to be adjusted. However, these various factors affect thyroid health to give slight variations in test results.
Conduct your tests at the same time of the day as thyroid levels increase slightly at night and reduces slightly during the day. As different labs give different results, you need to have your test done at the same lab. Sometimes results from the same lab may show differences in their readings.
Stick to the same thyroid hormone brand to avoid TSH level fluctuations. Your body tends to react differently to thyroid hormone brands. Skipping your medication is one of the factors that affect thyroid health. Though thyroxin or T4 stays in the blood for quite a long time, consequently missing your dose can have an effect on your test results.
Taking the wrong dosage affects your thyroid health as your body reacts differently to higher or lower dosages. Taking just an extra half pill for a few weeks can affect your thyroid levels. Inconsistently taking your medication can affect your thyroid health. It’s best if you take your thyroid medications on an empty stomach, early in the morning as food affects how your body absorbs the hormone. If you take your pill with meals, you need a higher dosage. This is why you need to be consistent and take your medication at the same time and way every day.
You need to take your medication even when you are pregnant, perhaps even more as you have a baby growing in you. Similarly, most women require fewer thyroid medications in menopause, when their dosage has to be reduced.
Oral contraceptives, iron and calcium medications, corticosteroids, cholesterol-lowering drugs and even herbs and supplements can affect your body’s ability at absorbing thyroid hormones and your body’s thyroid levels. This is why it’s important you inform your doctor about any other medications you take before you start your thyroid medication. Your TSH gets suppressed if you fall very sick as your illness stresses your endocrine system. It is thus necessary that you adjust your medications.
Last, but not least, dietary changes can affect a patient’s thyroid levels. This is the case if you eat enormous amounts of raw food like Brussels sprouts, kale, cabbage, cauliflower, soy, corn and nuts like walnuts, almonds, and peanuts. As there are so many factors that affect thyroid health, you need to get tested every six or 12 months, or when you adjust your dosage, to ensure your thyroid levels are where they need to be.