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Suzanne’s Story

Thyroid Treatment:
Circadian T3 Method, Natural Desiccated Thyroid (NDT)

I Used Natural Desiccated Thyroid (NDT) with the Circadian T3 Method (Ct3M) to Improve My Cortisol and Recover from Hypothyroidism and Adrenal Symptoms

DAY 1  – Feb. 27th, 2012

This is unbelievable. I’m on NDT only, not T3. Emboldened by the success of a few thyroid patients who are trying this protocol with NDT only, I made last night my first night of the CT3M.

This morning, my thinking is much more focused — even now, late morning, when I usually have my first adrenal slump of the day. I’m actually connecting the dots more easily today. My blood sugar isn’t shrieking for lunch (although I’m going to eat lunch anyway lol). My heartbeat irregularities are way, way down. And my heart is beating gently, not as if it’s ramming a steel cage with each beat.

I usually get up around 5:30. I set my alarm last night for 3:00. I didn’t sleep well before the alarm because my brain knew the nasty “beep beep beep” of the alarm clock was coming. I had trouble staying asleep after I took 2/3 of my daily NDT dose because my brain acknowledged that I only had a couple hours left to sleep. But I don’t feel tired today. WTH? Unbelievable, as I said. Especially since I’m also hampered by an RT3 ratio of 14.5.

Tonight I’ll set my alarm for 2:30. Maybe that way, my brain will register that I still have 3 hours left to sleep afterwards and let me do it.

DAY 2 – Feb. 28th

Update for Tuesday: I did set my alarm back to 2:30 a.m., and I was able to get back to sleep, and I was out of bed by 5:35 a.m. I’ll leave my alarm at 2:30 for awhile to see how this works. Alert and focused this morning. No blood sugar cravings. Minute tremors in hands are gone. Heart palps gone, heart beating gently. Boy, I need all that today.

DAY 3 – Feb. 29th

You haven’t heard from me much today because I’ve been getting things done. (!) My focus and energy are greatly improved, and the pain in my left wrist/arm/shoulder is diminished. I cruised right past my usual late-morning adrenal slump without a peep of protest from my adrenals. Now that it’s late afternoon, when my more profound adrenal slump usually occurs, I’m having a few heart palps, but it’s maybe 5% of what I’d been having, and I’m not sleepy. Wow, this is what NORMAL feels like! Ooh-rah!

My RT3 ratio as of 1.5 weeks ago was 14.5, and I’m using NDT (Erfa) with no T3-only med. I’ve also been taking selenium since last October.

DAY 4 – March 1st

An improvement I noticed today is that my eyes exhibit decreased sensitivity to direct sunlight. In the grocery store parking lot, I was standing in direct sunlight with no sunglasses, and my eyes weren’t twitching, blinking, or even squinting badly. That’s one adrenal symptom I sure won’t miss. I tested my pupils with a flashlight when I got home, and they no longer have that wicked flutter. It’s more of a slow oscillation. I wonder if my aldosterone is slowly building back up.

I had trouble getting back to sleep after my 2:30 a.m. dose last night. I was really deeply asleep when the alarm clock went off, and I just about slapped that sucker across the bedroom in effort to stop the beep beep beep. Those of you who are farther down the road than I am on the Circadian T3 Method shouldn’t find that surprising. Now that I think about it, I’m not sure when the last time was that I slept so deeply.

DAY 5 – March 2nd

Good news: I slept like a ROCK last night, woke myself up just enough to dose at 2:30 a.m., then fell right back to sleep. Awakened at 5:15 feeling rested, focused, energized, ready to have at the day. Sallied right past my late-morning adrenal weak spot. Ooh-rah! I think it’s safe to say that the Protocol has now shored up my adrenals for that particular weak spot.

I have noticed that I have better success with the CT3M when I’m in bed, lights out, before 9:45 p.m. I guess being a party animal is out for me for awhile, eh?

DAY 7 – March 4th

Overall I feel so much better than I did last Sunday, before I started the protocol. I’ve seen a huge decrease in muscle tremors, heart palps, and blood sugar cravings; and a huge increase in focus and clarity of thought. Even though I semi-wake up at 2:30 am to take 1 grain NDT, my sleep is much more solid. The protocol has obliterated my late-morning adrenal slump, and yesterday, for the first time, I sailed past the real tough customer: my late-afternoon adrenal slump. The sparks for writing fiction are returning — whoo hoo! — which is a huge relief, as that’s my livelihood.

I’m in the market for a doctor who’s open-minded and cutting edge, and if I find that doctor, I’ll tell him/her all about the Circadian T3 Protocol. If things don’t go well — and we all know that most of the time, Western doctors diagnose us from 25-year-old textbook cases — well, at least I’m going to get some bloodwork out of the appointment, and I’ll be able to see whether the protocol has made a dent in my RT3 ratio.

DAY 8 – March 5th

Ooooh-raaah! Do the Happy Dance with me. My brain neurons are unstuck, my creativity has begun flowing, and…I’M WRITING AGAIN!!!!!

Pain the my left arm now comes and goes instead of being constant. My dats are running 98.3 to 98.4. (I have 2 mercury thermometers and have used both because I thought surely my temps couldn’t be so close together, that the first thermometer must be broken. But no. Temps are accurate.) Average resting pulse is 72 – 75 bpm. I still have puffy eyes. Urrr. I guess I’ll have to wipe out one wretched hypo symptom at a time.

I’ve just blown past my late-morning adrenal slump again! I’d better shut up and go make lunch.

DAY 9 – March 6th

Today was one of those insanely busy days, and last night I had trouble getting back to sleep after the 2:30 a.m. medication. I’m feeling so good on my daily dose of 1.5 grains NDT (Erfa). I was able to complete a full day of work yesterday — first time since December — without being bogged down by my late-morning or late-afternoon adrenal slumps. Maybe those slumps are a thing of the past.

My saliva test last fall also indicated that my nighttime cortisol was a little above mid-point on the range. Since starting the protocol, I’ve been taking zinc with the bedtime snack that provides me with a supply of glucose for the night (so my body doesn’t run out and make adrenaline lol). Sometimes thyroid patients take zinc at night to help depress nighttime cortisol, so they won’t have trouble falling asleep. I wasn’t having much trouble falling asleep to begin with, but I decided to take the zinc anyway.

DAY 10  – March 7th

I’m now feeling so good that I’m getting a whole lot done.

I’m writing, writing, writing. Ohhhhh, this feels good, after weeks of not being able to harness my muse, due to this wretched disease. I feel the way wilted plants do after they receive a slow, thorough rain.
I feel *normal*. I smile for no reason at all. (Hah! I caught you smiling!) I’m more and more curious about life each day.

The pain in my left arm is now localized in just my elbow and shoulder blade, and even that is mild, when I have it. Some of the pain may be weather- and atmospheric-pressure-related, thus I may have some (hereditary) osteoarthritis going on. But the pain is no longer nagging.

I’m not having any kind of food cravings, period. I’m not having to eat meals *right on the nose*. A delay of up to an hour doesn’t freak out my blood sugar. My adrenals are no longer slumping late-morning or late-afternoon. Energy level through the day is even. No more peaks and valleys.

Starting tonight, I’m going to taper down my before-bed zinc supplementation. I was only taking an extra 11 mg, using it to make sure my slightly elevated nighttime cortisol didn’t stop me from going to sleep and discourage me from continuing the CT3M. My multivitamin contains 2 mg copper, so I should be okay there.

One warning about the CT3M. You cannot use it to help you get by with less sleep. Not that I tried to do that, but there have been several nights when I had the “wired-but-tired” effect going on with my adrenals, and I didn’t even get 7 hours sleep. That following day (like yesterday), I felt sub-normal. My ideal amount of sleep per night appears to be about 7.5 hours. I recommend that you not cheat yourself of sleep while working the Protocol. That way, you’ll be giving yourself the best odds of making it work for you.

If I continue to do well, I may slide my 1:30 p.m. dose of NDT closer to bedtime, see if I can use it to prime my adrenals before that 2:30 a.m. dose. That’s going to depend upon whether I can make enough cortisol from 2:30 – 5:30 a.m. to carry me all the way through the day to bedtime.

Looking forward to losing the puffy eyes (I’ve had them since late fall) and mild vertigo (I’ve had it since mid-January). Also looking forward to gaining back some of the 10 pounds I’ve lost in the past year. I’m actress-skinny now, and it does NOT look good on me. What are you waiting for? Try the CT3M. I bet you notice a difference after just one night.

DAY 14 – March 11th

Given that my usual dose time was 3:30 a.m. My usual dose amount was 1 grain NDT (60 mg) and my usual wake-up was time 5:30 a.m.

What I did to try to ease the loss of an hour (one hour clock change) was to offset by half an hour v. the entire hour. Therefore, I dosed at the equivalent of 3:00 a.m. (4:00 new time) and rose at the equivalent of 5:00 a.m. (6:00 new time). Getting out of bed at 6:00 this morning was really hard, but I did make it out by 6:10. I blundered about for most of the morning trying to recover my usual routine, and missed the first recording of data. The muscle twitch in my left eye returned. It had vanished when I started the Protocol 2 weeks ago %^#$@!!!. Heart palps also showed up.

When I finally sat down to record my data, although my pulse was still 72 bpm, my temp was 97.9, almost an entire degree lower than what it should have been for that time of day. As for my BP, I have this fight-or-flight thing going on with my limbic brain and the cuff. Even on a non-time change day, I was pretty sure that was causing all my BP readings to be higher than my true BP, so I’d been thinking about doing something to outfox that pre-Paleo part of my brain.

This morning, I sat in the most comfortable chair in the house, strapped on the cuff, and, without inflating it, meditated for a few minutes. When I’d gotten past the thought traffic, I quickly inflated the cuff. BP: 128/82  Yesss!

DAY 16 – March 13th

My BP has continued to follow a downward trend. So far today, I’ve had two lovely readings: 128/79 and 126/77. This doctor I’m seeing has been really patient about letting me work with the Circadian T3 Method. I sense that rather than being the typical arrogant jerk and insisting that doctors know best, he’s curious to see whether I can bring my BP down to a healthy level *without* Rx meds, using the CT3M. We email back and forth each day. I haven’t heard back from him yet today, but after I reported the above two readings, I asked him if I was off the hook.

Day 22 – March 19th

I feel really good. I feel NORMAL.

I’ve been dosing with 1 grain (60 mg) NDT at 3:30 a.m., then taking another 1/2 grain (30 mg) NDT mid-afternoon. My overall BPs have trended down to cluster around 120s/low 80s in the morning and 130s-low 140s/mid-80s in the afternoon.

I have no pain in my left arm except for an intermittent slight ache in my elbow. I have no heart palps, no finger twitching. I’m sleeping like a rock. Lately, I almost don’t remember waking at 3:30 to take my early dose, because I go right back to sleep. Amazingly, the bottom fourth of my eyebrows appear to be filling in — and I hadn’t even realized they were sparse! I’m also gaining back some of the weight I lost, which is a good thing for me. (I wish it would come back in my scrawny neck, but at least it’s come back in my bustline.) I’m not seeing my late-morning or late-afternoon adrenal slumps anymore, and my energy level is so constant that for the past three days, I’ve accidentally overshot the time I usually take the 1/2 grain NDT in the afternoon and wound up taking it early evening — not because I felt the hunger to take it, but because I knew it’s part of my daily dose.

My temps are still varying by 0.3 – 0.4 degrees, and I’d really like to ditch the vertigo and puffy eyes. But I hope that will come with time.

All of a sudden, I’m a lot more interested in the outside world. I went to a St. Patrick’s Day party last Saturday night and had fun. And I’m thinking about getting back into contra dancing again. That’s what this is all about, right?

Day 36 – March 24th

On Saturday night 24 March, I was able to do something that I haven’t done in about ten years. I went contra dancing. I’d been thinking about doing it again for several weeks before and was waiting for the signal from my body: feeling alert and focused in the evening. And *not* in pain. That’s right, folks. No. More. Pain. So I went contra dancing. Had a blast. Called it quits after about 1.5 hours of some of the most breathtaking aerobic stunts on the dance floor that I’d ever done, went home laughing, showered off the sweat, and slept like a rock. Felt really good Sunday, too. Feet were a little sore, but I couldn’t complain.

I felt like a euthyroid person would feel after having a great time. So, I got that little taste of Paradise.

Day 38 – March 26th

For those with RT3 issues, I can now confirm clinically that the Circadian T3 Method has helped with my RT3 issue.

My ratio prior to starting the Protocol 27 February was 14.5. On 20 March, after only about 3 weeks on the Protocol, my ratio was 20.2.