Depression and Weight Issues Have you been diagnosed with depression, are possibly on depression medication, and find it affects your weight loss efforts? Post here for support!

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Old 11-19-2004, 10:37 PM   #31  
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Default Depression & Hypothyroidism

Depression Explored, With Dr. Barry Durrant-Peatfield

Thyroid Disease Blog
From Mary Shomon,
November 19, 2003

Depression Explored, With Dr. Barry Durrant-Peatfield
Having just read the tragic news item from India about the depressed thyroid lady who committed suicide and preparing as I am at present a lecture about thyroid and depression, which I shall shortly give to London's Insitute of Optimum Nutrition's Mind Conference, I felt it might be appropriate to remind people of the strong link and frequency of depression and hypothyroidism...

Depression causes untold misery and destroys lives. Perhaps one in five people will suffer from it sometime in their lives. A huge industry has arisen around the treatment of depressive illness and psychiatrists are gainfully employed in their thousands. Whether it is more widespread than it was is perhaps difficult to answer. There are more of us to be depressed; we have more to be depressed about, and we are more likely to seek help. But there certainly seems to be more people troubled by depression and the great panoply of antidepressant medication tells its own story.

Before having a look at thyroid deficiency and its link to depression, we should learn a bit about it, and how it is caused and why. People who are depressed are sad, unmotivated most of the day and are usually worse in the morning. They sleep poorly, and wake up tired; they feel worthless, they have a poor self-image. They may eat more or less and put on or lose weight. Sir Winston Churchill used to call it his Black Dog. In his case, as with many, it was self-limiting: probably an extra cigar and brandy banished it?

There are two sorts of depression fundamentally: the exogenous kind, which is the result of circumstance, and the endogenous form, an illness from within ourselves. It is the second form we are to deal with. Maintenance of mood resides in part of the brain called the hippocampus. Here brain cells release neurotransmitter hormones, which are taken up by receptors; the amount released and the number of receptors responding, governs whether we are depressed or not.

Probably the most important of these mood neuro transmitter substances are serotonin and noradrenalin, and treatment is directed at preventing the decay of these substances at the receiving nerve endings. This is what Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors (MAOIs) antidepressants, Tricyclic antidepressants and Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs) do. However, thyroid hormone deficiency acts on the receptor sites and hastens the recycling of these neurotransmitters at the nerve endings or reduces the amount being secreted. The result is that the neurotransmitters that are responsible for maintaining mood do not work at optimum efficiency. Depression then takes over.

It has been estimated that more than one third of people suffering from depression are hypothyroid. Some are in hospital. They receive, over long periods, antidepressants of one sort or another when actually the problem is deficiency of thyroid hormones. It is simply that no one thought of thyroid deficiency as a cause when their illness began; or the simplistic tests failed to reveal it.

Any patient suffering from depression should be routinely assessed for hypothyroidism. There should be no exceptions; half to one third will be found to be hypothyroid, and as a result of treatment, their depression will begin to lift in weeks. Conventional medicine will turn with little thought to psychotropic antidepressants. The problem with these is that they are sometimes difficult to stop taking. Of the SSRIs, Seroxat in particular has a poor reputation in this respect; Prozac has attracted unfavourable reports and moreover contains a fluoride compound. Tricyclic antidepressants (eg Tryptizol, Imipramime) often have unpleasant sedating side effects, and the MAOIs (eg Parnate, Nardil) clash with a number of drugs and foodstuffs. St John's Wort is an altogether simpler and safer alternative.

Hypothyroidism should not be considered in isolation. It is more than likely that there are other deficiencies at work and cortisol, testosterone, oestrogen, DHEA and progesterone deficiencies should be looked for and corrected. It is now clear that nutrition plays a much greater role in mental illness than conventional medicine would have us believe.

The brain and its neurotransmitters simply don't work properly without the proper raw materials. An obvious one is that there should be a constant, even supply, of its fuel glucose. Hypoglycaemia is certainly associated with depression. The essential amino acids must be provided for the manufacture of the protein neurotransmitters; so must essential fatty acids, especially the omega 3 group, which make up the structure of the brain and the neurones releasing the neurotransmitters. The vitamin B complex, folic acid, vitamin C are needed to allow the amino acids to form complex proteins and the other mineral micronutrients have to be there.

Get the nutrients right (also ensuring thyroid manufacture and uptake), provide thyroid supplementation if required, perhaps as naturally as possible from glandular extracts, and we can fight the black tide of mind altering drugs that threatens to overwhelm so many of us.

Kind regards,

Barry Peatfield

Dr. Barry Durrant-Peatfield is the author of The Great Thyroid Scandal and How to Survive It, and one of the UK's most beloved thyroid experts. He is retired after an unsuccessful battle against the conventionally run medical bureaucracy who object to use of natural thyroid drugs, treatment for hypoadrenalism, and who condemn physicians for using patient-oriented thyroid diagnosis and treatment methods.

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Old 11-19-2004, 10:57 PM   #32  
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My son was told he had a "chemical imbalance" before we found out he actually has a low thyroid problem and I have been doing a lot of research on both. In the past few years I have come into contact with a lot of people with different chemical imbalances (depression, anxieties, bipolar, ocd, social phobias, panic attacks, etc etc etc) that are finding out that they have a low thyroid problem that is definitely attributing to their problems.

I thought it was important to share the above article with those that are here and dealing with a "chemical imbalance", so that they can at least be aware that there may be a connection and that they should have their thyroid checked out (correctly) if for no other reason, other than to at least rule out a thyroid problem.

I have read a lot of info and could not even begin to share it all here, but let me just quote one paragraph out of an article:

"Scientists now consider thyroid hormone one of the major "players" in brain chemistry disorders. And as with any brain chemical disorder, until treated correctly, thyroid hormone imbalance has serious effects on the patient's emotions and behavior."


TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone from the pituitary gland)

FREE T3 (available active thyroid hormone)

FREE T4 (available storage thyroid hormone)

and the anti thyroid antibodies tests
(TPO – Thyroid Peroxidase detects Hashimoto’s autoimmune thyroid disease and Thyroid Antithyroglobulin)

Please have these tests run, if for no other reason then to simply rule out a thyroid hormone problem that is contributing to your "chemical imbalance" or will interfere with your recovery efforts.

Some doctors are reluctant to run the Free T3 and Free T4, and will want to simply run the old thyroid tests. THIS IS NOT SUFFICIENT and can be very misleading or miss the problem!

Request or beg or demand the Free T3 and Free T4, TSH and the anti thyroid antibodies tests. If you do not want to go thru a doctor or cannot afford to, you can order the tests (Comprehensive Thyroid Panel II and Anti Thyroid Antibodies) yourself at It is very easy to do and then they will send you the paperwork in the mail for you to take with you to the nearest lab to draw your blood and you can look up your results online in a few days and also receive them in the mail.

If your Free levels are in the lower 1/3 of the range, it is possible a deficiency of thyroid hormone is causing your mental symptoms.

After the correct tests are done, if a low thyroid problem is found, it is most important that you be treated with Armour Thyroid, and not the synthetic drugs like synthroid, because Armour Thyroid contains BOTH T4 AND T3, and the others do not have T3. Some research indicates that T3 is needed especially for those with psychiatric symptoms such as depression.

Also on the TSH test - the ranges have changed and very few labs or doctors are recognizing the new lab ranges yet. The old TSH ranges were 0.5 to 5.5 and the new ranges have been changed to 0.3 to 3.0, so when you look at your TSH readings, (and I would ALWAYS GET COPIES OF MY BLOODWORK) be sure to keep in mind and tell your doctor about the new ranges. It is also very likely that the ranges will be changed soon to 0.3 to 2.0 - because there are those that feel that anything over 2.0 is hypothyroidism.

There are some that are only taking Armour Thyroid for their mental problems and are doing amazingly well and there are others, like my son, who needed 4 grains (240 mgs) of Armour Thyroid a day before any meds would help him. He is now doing amazingly well! and takes 5 grains (300 mgs) of Armour daily, and is now off of most of the psych meds he was placed on (which was an experience in itself!!!!) At this point, he does take an anxiety med if needed.

A side note to this - as of today, 04/16/08, he has now been off of ALL psych meds for the past 2 years. Only takes 5 grains Armour daily. He is better than GREAT!!!!

I also have a low thyroid problem and I am taking 5 grains (300 mgs) of Armour Thyroid a day, so I definitely know the difference it has made for me also!

I am here if anyone wants to talk about any of this.

take care & be well,

I just wanted to add this example here of how unreliable the TSH can be.
This gals bloodwork was run and she was told her thyroid was "normal" bec the TSH was in range. Then all the correct tests were run, as set forth above, and as you can see her Free T4 is below the range, and her Free T3 is very low in the range, and she also has thyroid antibodies that are attacking the thyroid hormone that she DOES have. This gal is now being treated with Armour Thyroid bec the correct tests were run.

TSH - 1.7 (Range 0.3 -3.0)

FREE T4 - .7 (Range 0.8-1.8)

FREE T3 - 90 (Range 60-180)

Antibodies were 126 & 146.

Also I just want to explain that on the TSH test, because this test looks backwards to our way of thinking, but the higher your TSH number, then the lower (hypothyroidism) your thyroid is suppose to be. TSH stands for Thyroid Stimulating Hormone and when your thyroid is low your body screams for more thyroid hormone by producing this stuff and the higher the number of this stuff then supposedly the lower your thyroid is, and the lower your number then the higher (hyperthyroidism) your thyroid is suppose to be. But again, we need to be running the FREE T3 and FREE T4 and thyroid antibodies tests.


Last edited by cathyxxx; 04-16-2008 at 10:27 AM.
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Old 12-22-2004, 01:37 PM   #33  
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Old 01-28-2005, 03:53 AM   #34  
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Depression has, in a large part, been the reason I am un secessful losing weight.
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Old 02-15-2005, 12:19 PM   #35  
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I have SAD. I was diagnosed quite a few years back - although I'd had regular bouts of depression it was only at that point I realised it had a seasonal element. Norman Rosenthal's Book 'The Winter Blues' is quite helpful.

I use a light box in winter, it certainly helps although I wouldn't say it was a universal panacea. I find that it helps with my energy levels, otherwise I am walking around all the time feeling half asleep in winter, and it also stabilises my sleeping hours. That helps, as if I am sleeping badly and feeling wiped out all the time it makes the depression much worse. I also use a dawn simulation alarm clock, year-round as this helps me wake up on grey days, though I don't use the lightbox after spring.

Unfortunately I haven't found light therapy helps with the tendency to crave food and overeat in winter. All my really bad weight gains have tended to be in the winter. I am just starting to come out of my winter 'hibernation' period. I've just realised recently that I tend to start things or give up things in late February - I originally dieted that time, I also gave up drinking last year in late Feb. I think the urge to make changes tends to hit me after my energy levels start to recover.
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Old 04-06-2005, 04:07 PM   #36  
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Originally Posted by Tippy
In the latest Readers Digest there is an interesting article about children and depression. I recommend it.

My daughter was diagnosed with manic depression when she was nine. I have to wonder how many others out there have it and go undiagnosed while parents and others blame it on rebellion and such.
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Old 04-06-2005, 04:10 PM   #37  
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I have a friend who was on the atkins diet with her husband and they both lost alot of weight on it and were very happy with it. I guess it all depends on the person. My doctor says since I am diebetic, it is better for me to eat smaller portions and six small meals a day rather than three larger ones and cutting out a bunch of stuff.
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Old 04-08-2005, 08:06 PM   #38  
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This is true for alot of people, yours truly too.
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Old 07-01-2005, 09:29 AM   #39  
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Hey Gang,

As most of ya'll know, I do a lot of research on thyroid.

I got this from yahoo "thyroid" news alert which is about researchers finding a link between an abnormal thyroid condition and bipolar disorder!!!!!!

I love it when the researchers figure out what "regular people" are
finding out. ;-)

I will CAPITALIZE the main sentence and put the info on thyroid in BOLD.


Public release date: 16-Jun-2005

University of Pittsburgh Medical Center

Research zeros in on bipolar disorder genes, link with thyroid condition

Genetics major theme at International Conference on Bipolar Disorder
June 16-18

PITTSBURGH, June 16 – Despite an intensive effort, researchers have
yet to identify the genes that cause bipolar disorder, yet the
practical benefits of such a discovery could reap rich rewards for
those suffering from the mental illness.

New research findings presented today at the Sixth International
Conference on Bipolar Disorder suggest specific genetic linkages that
are associated with the mental illness, bringing researchers much
closer to finding the elusive gene or genes. ANOTHER STUDY

To further investigate more specific genetic linkages, Marion
Leboyer, M.D., Ph.D., of the University of Paris Faculty of Medicine,
studied 87 bipolar sibling pairs from 70 European families who were
participants in the European Collaborative Study on Early Onset
Bipolar Affective Disorder and identified eight regions of genetic
linkages that, while not necessarily the sole or unique ones
associated with this disease, zeroed in on what may be the specific
genes that predispose individuals to early onset of this debilitating

According to Dr. Leboyer, his studies of families with members who
developed the illness as children or adolescents reduces those
genetic and clinical variabilities that can complicate efforts to
identify susceptibility genes. Finding these genes would help
researchers develop more effective treatments or even prevent
the disorder from occurring in at-risk individuals.

Other genetic clues come from results of two related studies
involving adolescent and young adult offspring of bipolar parents and
of twins with bipolar disorder, suggesting a genetic link between
bipolar disorder and an abnormal thyroid condition

Willem Nolen, M.D., Ph.D., of the University of Groningen Medical
Centre, Netherlands, found that bipolar patients were twice as likely
as healthy subjects to develop autoimmune thyroiditis (AT).
the offspring of parents with bipolar disorder, who usually have an
increased prevalence of bipolar and other mood disorders, there also
was an increased prevalence of AT. Surprisingly, this finding did not
seem to be related to whether their offspring themselves had been
diagnosed with a psychiatric illness.

Among identical twins (who share all their genes) with at least one
twin having bipolar disorder, prevalence of AT was increased in the
other twin, irrespective of whether the other twin also had bipolar
disorder. However among fraternal twins (who share 50 percent of
their genes) with at least one fraternal twin having bipolar
disorder, prevalence of AT was increased only in the other fraternal
twin who also had bipolar disorder, but was not increased in the
fraternal twin without the illness.

Dr. Nolen's research highlights the increasing importance of
identifying endophenotypes – clinical information unique to certain
groups of individuals that may be predictive of risk for disease and
course of illness. Although associated genes for bipolar disorder and
AT have yet to be identified, AT may be an endophenotype for bipolar
disorder. As such, the findings suggest that relatives of patients
with bipolar disorder not only inherit the vulnerability for bipolar
disorder and other mood disorders, but that some also may share
the genetic vulnerability for developing AT.

If proven valid in further studies, the research suggests that
members of families in which bipolar disorder occurs could be tested
for autoimmune thyroiditis by means of a simple blood analysis,
thereby helping to identify those who also may be at risk for
developing bipolar disorder.

"Why hasn't a gene for bipolar disorder been identified when clearly
the illness affects some families more than others and what is
science telling us about who is most vulnerable and how the onset
of the illness can be prevented? While a number of genes have been
suspected to be associated with bipolar disorder, we thus far have
failed to isolate any definitive bipolar gene, but are making sure
progress that will ultimately bring answers about how and why this
debilitating disease affects so many. By exploring these genetic
connections, we inch closer to surer diagnosis and more rational and
effective treatments," commented Michael Thase, M.D., professor of
psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.

Held every two years, the International Conference on Bipolar
Disorder is the only venue in the world devoted exclusively to
highlighting new research into bipolar disorder. The Sixth Conference
is being held June 16 to18 at the David L. Lawrence Convention
Center, located in the heart of downtown Pittsburgh, and is being
sponsored by the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and
Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic of the University of
Pittsburgh Medical Center.

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Old 07-01-2005, 09:33 AM   #40  
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Default Article on Depression & Exercise

*Missing Exercise Can Be Depressing*

By Miranda Hitti

June 7, 2005 -- Skipping exercise for a week or two may cramp your
mood, says a study that turned regular exercisers into couch potatoes.

"We were able to measure negative results from withdrawal of exercise
in just two weeks," says researcher Ali Berlin, MS, in a news release.
Berlin works at the military's Uniformed Services University of the
Health Sciences. She presented her findings in Nashville, Tenn., at the
American College of Sports Medicine's annual meeting.

*Stick to It*

The take-home message: Once you start exercising, keep it up. That
doesn't mean becoming a slave to the Stairmaster or a fanatic about any
particular workout. Adjustments may be necessary from time to time.

For example, "if someone is a regular jogger or bicyclist and find they
cannot do the activity for a short time, they need to do something else
like walking until they can resume their preferred activity," says

*Forced to Take a Break*

Berlin's study included 40 regular exercisers. "We were not looking at
elite athletes; the study participants were people who are regularly
active at a moderate level," says Berlin.

First, the participants took mood and fitness tests. Next, half were
forbidden from exercising for two weeks. The others were told to follow
their normal fitness routine.

The tests were repeated one and two weeks later. The results showed
that the forced exercise "vacation" didn't recharge anyone's batteries.
Instead, it left the former exercisers feeling worse than before.

It's one of those strange-but-true health facts: The more active you
are, the more energy you have. That is, as long as you're not ill or
engaging in ridiculous amounts of exercise that push the body too hard.

The CDC recommends that adults get at least 30 minutes of
moderate-intensity physical activity five or more days per week.

*No Exercise, Crummy Mood*

"After one week we began to see changes," says Berlin. After two weeks,
those changes had deepened. Two weeks of slothfulness had pushed the
former exercisers into a grim state.

By then, they were significantly more tense, tired, and less vigorous.
The more out of shape they became, the more their mood and energy level
worsened. "What this tells us is that any interruption in a regular
fitness routine can have a negative [impact]," says Berlin.

So what's a person to do when the weather is miserable or time seems
scarcer than usual? Get creative. Tweak your routine, choosing other
activities to stay physically and mentally fit, Berlin suggests.

Health care workers may also want to keep an eye out for depression
symptoms in exercisers who get sidelined by injury or illness, she


SOURCES: American College of Sports Medicine 52nd Annual Meeting,
Nashville, Tenn., June 1-4, 2005. News release, American College of
Sports Medicine. CDC: "Physical Activity for Everyone:
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Old 12-09-2005, 09:39 PM   #41  
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Amazing, I am hypothyroid and find when I do not exercise that i become depress. These articles hit home. Thanks a billion.
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Old 01-22-2006, 03:59 PM   #42  
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just wanted to post this info to a site with great thyroid and psychiatric problems
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Old 08-26-2006, 06:08 PM   #43  
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I want to share this bit of info and post a link to this article

"This article is titled "Supercharge antidepressants by adding thyroid hormone" and is in Psychiatry Online/July 2006.

Now I might be inclined to suggest to the psych folks that their patients were just brain hypo anyway and didn't even need the SSRI, but rather proper diagnosis....and did they even bother to test for thyroid antibodies and Free levels or check family history of thyroid dysfunction?

And I might also suggest that they break that T3 into two doses during the day and monitor the folks' Free T3, letting it get to the top of the range or even over - and that they ignore TSH.

But I'll hold the commentary and just suggest that the article is good reading for explaining how thyroid hormone works in the brain and helps raise serotonin, etc.

Cindi - Forum Moderator
Stop the Thyroid Madness"
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Old 12-29-2006, 07:20 PM   #44  
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Like you, I suffer depression. Nobody knows how it weighs you down. It is because one of life's needs is not being met: could be job, love, family, money, health... other things. Our life needs to be in balance. Two recommended things to help are: vigorous exercise which helps the chemicals in our brain - and helping other people which helps us see other people's troubles and puts ours into perspective. It is a terrible thing which we have to fight. I struggle as you do. Just know you are not alone.
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Old 03-12-2007, 10:05 AM   #45  
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Hi my namme is Karon ......I didnt know weath to post this or not I am 49 and very much over weight .I also suffer from Manic Deression and panic and ansity dsorder. Witch belive me are very realy they both stop me from doing the the things I want somtimes even driving or swimming with my 19 year old daughter or fishing with my hubby.I take meds for all of thease problems witch I think is why somtimes I can not lose weight the Lithum I take every day is a salt based drug so it makes me retain water and I take a water to help that and Wellbutrin for deppesion and a dozen or more orther pills .
Every diet I have ever tried I failed my depression gets the best of me I also have a very low self asteam. I am not a very smart person and that comes up alot and I get pick on for it not buy my family but others.
I am not looking for simathy (cant spell today)I have tryed coming off my ills i wont work but if any one knows of a good diet please let me know Oh and the pic of Gorege Carlin he is my hero he make me lafe he bookes make me think he has a way at looking at life that I love ............Thankes Karon
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