The Use of Calcium Supplements Whilst on Synthroid
Article by Canadian Health&Care Mall Team
The hormone which is developed by the thyroid gland is called thyroxine. Synthroid is its well-known man-made variant that is taken daily by those patients, who suffer from an abnormally low activity of the thyroid gland as well as an underactive thyroid. This replacement treatment course is regarded as one of the most effective ones. Aside of the mentioned health issues, it also treats thyroid cancer.
Its adequate amounts in one’s systems help in ensuring normal physical and mental health. Yet still, there are some foods, drinks or useful supplements that always influence the man-made hormone absorption and change body’s therapeutic reaction to the treatment course. Today, popular calcium supplements are in this list.
Details on the Interaction
Synthroid is offered worldwide in the form of tablets. This med is taken on an empty stomach once per day. To ensure better results, patients are suggested to take it about an hour before having breakfast.
Many sufferers take various calcium supplements which are effective in bone loss prevention. Some take antacid that includes calcium carbonate. If a patient is able to refuse neither from calcium nor from Synthroid, he is to make sure that the time frame between the intakes of these two meds is at least 4 hours. Why? Feed additives that contain calcium usually contain some other elements as well (magnesium, simethicone, ferrous sulfate, aluminum, etc.) that work reducing the efficacy of Synthroid. After binding, all these elements prevent Synthroid absorption. It results in hypothyroidism.
Adverse Reactions of Synthroid & Calcium Supplements
The category of adverse reactions of both meds is very broad. To understand what must be expected after the joining of both meds, one must get acquainted with the list of potential adverse reactions of each of them.
Synthroid consumption can lead to a broad range of complications:
- general: weight loss, fatigue, increased appetite and heat intolerance;
- gastrointestinal: abdominal cramps and diarrhea, liver dysfunction and vomiting;
- endocrine: bone density decrease, decrease of calcium absorption, decalcification of bones;
- cardiovascular: insomnia, anxiety, irritability, hypersensitivity, cardiac arrest or palpations, increased heart rate, tachycardia, arrhythmias as well as increased blood pressure.
Calcium intake can lead to a broad range of complications:
- common: vomiting, constipation, dry mouth, nausea, hypersensitivity reactions, decreased appetite, frequent urination;
- emergency: face or lips, throat or tongue swelling, high levels of calcium in one’s blood, breathing difficulties, stomach pain, joint pain.
Possible Dangers for Cancer Patients
When the supplements and Synthroid are taken too close together by cancer sufferers, they lead to potentially dangerous adverse reactions. This is why healthcare professionals usually prescribe thyroid hormone in the dosage that is a bit greater than normal. One dosage suppresses the TSH-levels of a patient (thyroid stimulating hormone) and helps to prevent the growth of cancer cells and their possible reoccurrence. Cancer patients aren’t allowed to make any changes in the therapeutic course, add new medications into it without professional consultation. Any new drug can affect the efficiency of Synthroid med. A sufferer always has to discuss the proper dosage and medication or food interaction.
Possible Dangers for Hypothyroid Patients
When the mentioned supplements and Synthroid are consumed too close together by those, who suffer from thyroid gland problems, they lead to potentially dangerous adverse reactions. The reaction gets really severe in case the calcium supplement dosage is very high. When calcium habits start preventing Synthroid med from being absorbed properly, a patient starts experiencing basic hypothyroid symptoms:
- elevated levels of blood cholesterol;
- dry skin.
When calcium levels are pretty low, they throw off all blood tests and it makes it very hard for a doctor to decide on the correct Synthroid dosage for health maintenance and issues prevention.
As foods can interfere with the Synthroid absorption too, it is important to tailor one’s daily ration to avoid possible complications. So, what foods should better be avoided by Synthroid patients? The list includes:
- grains, especially bran cereals;
- raspberries and other fruits that are rich in fiber.
The list of foods that are regarded as healthy ones for those, who are on Synthroid, includes:
- lean meats and eggs – a usual choice for breakfast;
- cottage cheese and yoghurt (though they contain calcium, yet its amount isn’t great enough to interfere with Synthroid). Wait for nearly 30 minutes after taking a pill and then eat your cheese or drink your yoghurt;
- low-fiber grains (rice cereal), refines cereal and toast;
- fruit juices that don’t contain calcium;
- peanut butter next to your toast for extra protein;
- bagels, waffles, pancakes (usual carbs), if they aren’t made from grains that are rich in fiber.
You’ve probably noticed that the described foods belong to the breakfast menu. Why not dinner or supper one? The answer is simple: doctors suggest taking Synthroid before breakfast as it helps to increase the serum T4 levels for the whole day. These foods don’t interfere with Synthroid efficiency or absorption, yet add to its benefits.