Natural Thyroid versus Big Pharma Synthroid

There is a big debate going on at the online site Stop The Thyroid Madness (STTM) because Forest Pharmaceuticals has altered the formulation of Armour Thyroid. Janie Bowthorpe, author of STTM and natural thyroid advocate, is all a twitter because allegedly the new formula is causing hypothyroid symptoms to return and the taste is awful. I am bothered because I just started Armour Thyroid and have seen good results (my t-3 has gone too high even) and I have decreased my dose by half of what it was with compounded thyroid. I have seen tremendous improvements from my days taking Levothyroxine, so I would love to hear from people on their experiences good and bad.

I have been letting my Armour melt under my tongue or in my vestibular area as Janie recommends and really have nothing to complain about. Does it taste like a piece of candy? No. Do I need everything to taste sweet? No and if you do you need to look at your diet and get rid of the sugar. Is the texture chalky? Yes but it is medicine. I do have a health problem and if a little chalky tasting tablet helps me feel better I am all in favor of it. The other issue that Janie brings up in her book STTM is that different times and seasons may necessitate more or less Armour (or some other natural thyroid) is it possible that the folks needing more grains with the new Armour thyroid are suffering from seasonal issues and not the alleged decrease of porcine thyroid or the addition of other ingredients that make up the tablet made by Forest Pharmaceuticals.

I must say that first of all Forest Pharmaceuticals needs to talk to Janie Bowthorpe. Quit refusing to speak to her because she has an online site or whatever your reasons are because you are creating a problem of confidence where there may be no need. All of us should have the right to talk to someone who has the answers about any medication we take and refusing to talk to her shows your childishness and typically inconsiderate behavior of every other arrogant pharmaceutical company. It is frightening for anyone who takes a pill for a certain quality of life and we need answers.

To Janie and the other voices complaining about the taste and texture, get over it. Also if the dosage has changed there must be a control group to determine this and not just one voice here and one voice there saying they have had to increase their dosage or that their hypo symptoms have returned. Do they, for instance, have allergies that their body might be fighting off as it is now spring? Did they have some recent incident, such as a death in the family, that could trigger return of symptoms? Have they just returned from an overseas trip because that taxes the body and causes hypo symptoms to become exagerated? Jane and John Q. Public cannot just start making accusations against Forest Pharmaceuticals without more substantial evidence that the new Armour Thyroid really has diminished abilities because all they do is scare the rest of us in to making a decison that could ultimately harm us not help us.

If you are interested in this ongoing Armour debate tune in to STTM and be a vocal participant. Twitter about the issue, put it on your Facebook page, in general call attention to the problem, openly discuss the issue with others who have a vested interest and in the end you will hopefully be able to make an educated decision that you can then discuss with your physician and make a change or stay with Armour. It is ultimately up to you to take control of your health.


6 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Nancy on 18:49 at Thursday, May 21, 2009

    Thanks Kris. I’ll check out Facebook…Just started to learn it this year. ha


    • Posted by krisinsight on 5:13 at Friday, May 22, 2009

      Hi Nancy, I know it sounds ridiculous to be on Facebook as I have many friends and family who refuse but health people like Janie, Joe Mercola (these sites are public but Janie has a private one you cannot access) etc are now on Facebook and it puts all that vital health information right at your fingertips.


  2. Posted by Nancy on 13:14 at Monday, May 18, 2009

    Hi. Stumbled upon your website while looking at my Yahoo search results for Armour. I am one that noticed something strange about Armour suddenly. My hypo symptoms started to come back. And the last thing I want is Janie Bowthorpe to “get over it”. She is our voice and there is apparently more than me noticing the difference. Like Janie said in her blog or Facebook (can’t remember which), I’m hoping that all I have to do is raise it a little higher and get the same results. Time will tell. But like you said, Forest Pharmaceuticals needs to grow up in its communication skills. Janie has put a lot of money in their pockets, so to do that to her is stupid in my book.


    • Posted by krisinsight on 7:38 at Tuesday, May 19, 2009

      Hi Nancy, thanks for the comment. Please read my comments again because I said that Janie needs to “get over” the taste factor, it isn’t important whether it is chalky or tasteless in my opinion. I never meant to imply that Janie isn’t a terrific advocate for those of us with hypothyroidism. I do, however, think before we all condemn the new formulation a controlled study by some of us needs to be done and I stand by that as individual results vary for all of us and stress and strain could be causing some of the hypo symptoms to return for some people not the new formulation.
      For example, I recently read, on an online chat about hypothyroidism, a woman’s complaint about Nature Throid and her unhappiness with the return of severe depression yet another woman this morning on Facebook says she has noticed no difference.
      Personally I am concerned about the level of discontent with the new Armour as my prescription is soon going to be up. Barring any new information that “proves” otherwise I am getting more of the newly formulated Armour and hoping for the best.


      • Posted by Nancy on 16:18 at Tuesday, May 19, 2009

        Hi. Funny, but I don’t see Janie as concerned about the “taste factor” as she is about patients who are reporting that their symptoms are coming back, just as mine did. And definitely for me, there was no “stress and strain” the past few weeks. I just went to her blog post about Forest from the other week, and there are several more comments from patients reporting experiences similar to mine. I’m raising mine to see if I can get myself back to where I was before on the old Armour. My fingers are crossed for you and me and everyone else.

      • Posted by krisinsight on 18:53 at Tuesday, May 19, 2009

        I agree I hope we will all find our happy medium. The beauty of Armour is we can add and subtract as we see fit. I actually had to subtract half a tablet. By the way, my medical insurance which isn’t the best by far covered my Armour 100%, so I personally am not complaining about Armour. I will add a grain when I see fit.

        Are you on Facebook Nancy? That is where the comments about sugar have been recently and thus my concern that sweetness is the primary reason for concern. Check it out if you aren’t on Facebook. It is easy to set up a page and then just become a “friend” of Janie’s Thyroid Facebook page.

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