A patient shares her success managing her Hashimoto’s and thyroid nodules with dietary changes.
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Thyroid Nodule Success
Dr. Michael Ruscio: Hi, I’m Dr. Ruscio. I’m here with Patricia.
Patricia Johnson: Patricia Johnson.
DrMR: And she had some really good results in a short period of time. So I asked you if you wanted to share this, especially for people who have a hard time making the dietary shift. I think that was really key for you. So why don’t you tell me a little bit about what you came in with, what you experienced, and what you noticed?
PJ: Okay. So I had gone to my primary care physician for a thyroid nodule. And it’s not anything you see on the outside. But it was causing some swelling. And I felt like I couldn’t breathe at night. And so when I went to the doctor, he said that it wasn’t really enlarged to any additional than it had been, and there wasn’t any really anything I could do. If I wanted to have an operation, that may or may not alleviate it. But I would probably have to go on medication.
DrMR: Not the best…
PJ: No. So I also had an ear, nose, and throat doctor look down my throat because maybe there was something there. And they didn’t find anything. But I still had these feelings. So I had heard about you because I listen to Jimmy Moore on the Livin’ la Vida Low-Carb Show. So when I thought about going to another doctor, I thought, well, I’ll go to Dr. Ruscio because you studied thyroid.
PJ: So when I came here and your suggestion was for me to go on this autoimmune diet, I was a little skeptical because I thought that I had been eating pretty well. I know I needed to lose weight. But I had been eating some things I shouldn’t eat. But they were all what I consider to be healthy things.
So I studied the diet for a week because it took a while to kind of take it all in, like, “Wow, what am I going to eat?” And so then I prepared myself, got my kitchen all prepared. And I started following the diet. Within three days, the swelling was gone, amazingly! And I kept waiting for it to come back. It didn’t come back. And now it’s been about three weeks. It’s amazing. Absolutely amazing. I can’t believe that the swelling is completely gone. My energy level is greatly improved.
DrMR: And you’ve lost maybe eight pounds?
PJ: And I probably have lost about eight, maybe 10 pounds.
DrMR: We’re about to do the weigh-in. But from her home scale, she thinks about eight pounds.
PJ: Yes. Yeah. So I plan to follow this, I don’t know, forever. It just feels great. It’s not that hard once you start. And I’ve gotten used to not having any yogurt. And the nuts, I love nuts. But if that’s what’s causing my swelling, I won’t have nuts.
DrMR: Sure. And eventually what we’re going to do with Patricia is we’re going to start to reintroduce some of these foods so that she doesn’t have to be off all these who can definitely. And we’ll see if we can pin down one or two foods that may be causing this issue.
And what we found with Patricia was we did find Hashimoto’s. And what I think was happening was coming to our thyroid model here, in a healthy thyroid gland, it’s smaller. But when the thyroid gland becomes enlarged, as you see here or when the thyroid gland has Hashimoto’s, it can become enlarged. And that can cause some occlusions and some pressure on the throat.
This is why when a goiter gets bad enough, they may have to do surgical removal of the thyroid gland because it can encroach on swallowing and breathing and things like that. So what’s probably happening underneath the surface is that the thyroid autoimmunity that’s causing the inflammation and swelling has been quelled by a change in the diet. And now that feeling is gone.
PJ: Yeah, that’s miraculous. It’s amazing! Because if you touch it, I don’t feel anything. That’s pretty amazing.
DrMR: Yeah, it’s a good feeling. Yeah, you feel much better.
PJ: You could bottle that and sell it.
DrMR: Well, the problem is you can’t bottle it and sell it!
PJ: Yes, that’s right! That’s right! [Laughs]
DrMR: And that’s why it hasn’t gotten more popular than it is. But she’s done great. 30 days, autoimmune paleo diet. We also put you on some basic vitamin support, low-dose hormone replacement therapy. And that was pretty much it. And I’m convinced that the largest contributing factor has definitely been the diet. And I wanted to share that for people out there who may think that they need a more serious intervention to get benefits. And they may. But sometimes the simple things really work the best.
PJ: Well, and I thought that I could come here and get started on something that would prevent my thyroid from getting any worse, because according to the doctors, there’s not anything I can do. It’s the wait-and-see-what-happens. But it was getting a little worse. So now I can breathe great. And I don’t have any problems at night. And now I’m working on my sleeping, working on my exercise. And I’m sure the weight is going to go down.
DrMR: Continue to go down.
PJ: No cravings. It’s pretty good.
DrMR: And we didn’t have to do a lot of expensive lab testing. We did one blood panel to look at her thyroid function. But we did not have to do extensive food allergy testing or other works. We may do some additional tests in the future. But our agreement now is we’ll follow up in 30 days. If she’s still feeling this great, we’re pretty much done. Cool.
Well, thank you so much for talking with us.
PJ: Oh, thank you very much.
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