If you can understand this one undeniable truth about thyroid supplements, then you’ve figured out more than most do in an entire lifetime.

There is no one best thyroid supplement that is going to fix all of your thyroid issues.

It doesn’t exist.

What you need to understand is that your thyroid health doesn’t depend solely on your thyroid gland.

Instead, it depends on an entire thyroid hormone pathway with multiple points that must all be addressed together.

(NOTE: Want to learn how to address your entire Thyroid Hormone Pathway? Be sure to see this article on “How We Overcome Hypothyroidism When All Else Fails”.)

Unfortunately, there’s no one supplement that can address the entire pathway.

In fact, different types of thyroid supplements are required to address each individual part of the pathway.

It’s our job to help our clients pinpoint which parts of their thyroid hormone pathway are broken, and which supplements are the best thyroid supplements to help fix them.

Today, I’m going to explain how we at Forefront Health use a simple, yet powerful process to do just that.

Yet, more importantly, we’ll show you how you can take advantage of and use the same process to help you with your own thyroid condition.

More on this in a minute…

It all boils down to what I like to call, “painting the big picture”.

Working with our clients, we have to properly assess and gather as much information as possible from the resources we have.

Just like a detective, we sort the data, looking for clues about what is happening inside your body.

Then we use a therapeutic trial process to dig deeper and create concrete, lasting results (more on that in a bit too).

We look for clues, commonalities, and patterns, that point to one or more underlying issues.

Below you’ll find 6 pieces of information that we take into consideration to determine the best thyroid supplements for our clients.

1. Age and Gender

Generally, we start with age and gender because we want to look at specific profiles of when in a man or woman’s life they are at the greatest risk for developing certain deficiencies, hormonal imbalances, etc.

For example, there are certain times in a woman’s life when she is at a higher risk for developing estrogen dominance.

While starting here may seem obvious, you might not be surprised that many doctors and medical professionals often overlook the simplest things that can tell us the most about your thyroid dysfunction.

2. Thyroid Symptoms

Another obvious place to start is to look at specific symptoms our clients are experiencing.

But there’s a little more that’s going on here, because typically we have several symptoms that correlate to specific issues.

We look to see if particular symptoms correlate with age and gender, and we examine if these are symptoms that we would expect to see at a particular stage in life.

We also looks for symptoms that would indicate a specific deficiency or hormonal imbalance.

Finally we ask: do we see patterns that correlate to things that we have seen with clients in the past?

As a thyroid sufferer, it can be easy to feel trapped and isolated by your symptoms, but in fact, we can learn a great deal by examining what your symptoms have in common with the many other people that are in a similar situation.

This important data can tell us what we need to focus on first and foremost.

Looking at symptoms is one of the most important factors in determining the best thyroid supplements for you.

To help you, we’ve created a free, in-depth thyroid diagnostic quiz and follow-up Personalized Thyroid Supplement Plan, to give you a starting point to improve your thyroid health, even if you’re not our client.

thyroid supplement quiz

3. Medical Diagnoses

Similar to symptoms, we look carefully at medical diagnoses that provide additional clues.

For example, a clue such as a Hashimoto’s thyroiditis diagnosis, or somebody who’s been found to have excess TPO antibodies, points to excess estrogen.

(NOTE: Want to learn more about the connection between Hashimoto’s and excess estrogen? Be sure to read this article on “Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis: How It Develops and How to Reverse It”.)

In addition, we look for various other autoimmune issues, like arthritis, which can give us insight into the body’s stress response and thyroid function.

We know that these diagnoses are caused by specific underlying issues, and that gives us more insight into how to get to the root of the problem, and importantly, where to start getting the quickest results.

4. Lab Testing & Results

We certainly want to look at thyroid labs for starters.

But we don’t stop there.

Ideally, we like to have a standard testing protocol that includes much more than just a thyroid panel.

We actually also want to look at various hormonal and metabolic markers, similar to how we look at symptoms and diagnoses.

With thyroid labs (and other tests), we don’t just look at medical reference ranges.

We have to look specifically at where these test markers fall within those ranges.

Are they in the optimal range? For example, the medical reference range for Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH) is very wide.

You might have TSH levels that are considered “normal” by doctors, i.e., fall within the accepted medical reference range, while experiencing symptoms that tell a different story.

We look more closely to see if those levels are in a more specific, “optimal” range.

(NOTE: Want to learn more about TSH and why doctors have it all wrong? See this article on “Why the TSH Test Is Failing 58.6 Million Hypothyroid Women Today (In the US Alone)”.)

Another question we ask is, are T3 and T4 within the “optimal” ranges.

Often we find that they are in the accepted medical range, but far from optimal, giving us additional insight about what is happening in your body.

For example, if T4 is normal or elevated and T3 is on the low end of the reference, that can indicate hormone conversion issues in the liver.

If T4 is lowered, that can indicate suppression of the thyroid itself.

Yet, we don’t just look at thyroid labs. We look at many different test indicators to see if there are commonalities or multiple indicators pointing to more specific underlying issues, or any test results that demonstrate common patterns that we’ve seen in past clients.

One last, important point I want to make about lab tests is that testing is not the end-all-be-all when searching for answers about your thyroid.

We sometimes have clients who have symptoms, diagnoses, etc. all pointing to a specific issue, yet the lab results are conflicted. So, there are limitations to lab tests, and external factors that can skew test results.

For this reason, labs should be taken with a grain of salt.

There are definitely cases where we don’t see what we expect to see.

Yet that doesn’t mean those issues don’t exist.

There are many reasons why lab tests might be inconclusive or misleading.

Remember, we’re trying to paint a big picture, so if lab results don’t line up with everything else we’re seeing, then we’re not going to ignore obvious signs pointing us in the right direction.

5. Response to Medications

Oftentimes, we have clients who have been prescribed various medications, and we want to know how they’ve responded, because this can offer us even more clues.

This isn’t limited to just thyroid medication. We obviously look carefully at thyroid medication use, yet we also look at other medications as well.

If we know that a certain medication is supposed to have a specific mechanism of action and we see a response to that medication that doesn’t line up, that can tell us something very important.

It’s another piece to the puzzle, so to speak.

For example, with our clients we sometimes see a sensitivity to thyroid medications containing T3, like T3-Only medications such as Cytomel, or a desiccated thyroid medications such as Armour, Naturthroid, or WPthyroid. Oftentimes, it’s not the medication that’s the problem, it’s an underlying dysfunction with your body that is causing the negative reaction to the medication.

We can typically make adjustments to diet and/or supplementation in order to correct these types of negative reactions.

6. Temperature and Pulse Testing

Last but not least, there is an additional level of information that we try to gather, and that’s testing temperature.

We look at temperature and pulse in a few different ways.

For example, we’ll compare temperature and pulse from day to day over a period of time.

We’ll also look at temperature and pulse patterns from the start of the day to the end.

This is a more advanced level testing that we use with clients, yet it can provide an enormous amount of helpful information.

For example, it can help us determine how a client responds to specific supplements, medications, dietary changes, etc.

The Importance of the Therapeutic Trial

By gathering as much information as possible, we begin to paint the big picture.

Depending on how much information we have, the more clear or blurry the picture is.

That’s when we begin the “Therapeutic Trial” process to gather more information and add more clarity to the picture.

This is not a new concept at all. Thyroid dysfunction was diagnosed in the past (before the often-fallible lab tests of today) by a therapeutic trial process.

Doctors would look at thyroid dysfunction based on common symptoms and markers, like cholesterol levels, which are directly correlated with thyroid dysfunction, and basal metabolic rate.

They would treat patients with desiccated thyroid for a set amount of time, then observe symptomatic changes, changes in basal metabolic rate, and changes in other areas.

If they saw improvements in these various tests, that would be enough conclusive evidence that the person was hypothyroid, because they were responding to the treatment.

Using this information, they would continue or alter treatment accordingly.

That’s exactly the process that we use now, though luckily, we’re able to look at many more data points.

Good or bad, feedback always helps to get a clearer picture, and deliver a more focused approach.

Based on all the information that we have, we start with specific recommendations (regarding both diet and supplementation) for a few weeks and then have clients report back.

We use that feedback to figure out what’s working, what we need to continue, and what we need to change.

Now You Can Be Your Own Thyroid Detective

As you can see, there is A LOT of information that we process to determine the best thyroid supplements for our clients.

It’s difficult to teach clients and others how to process this information. Most are not interested in learning how to do this.

But don’t worry because we can do the hard work for you.

To help you, we’ve created a free, in-depth thyroid diagnostic quiz and follow-up Personalized Thyroid Supplement Plan, to give you a starting point to improve your thyroid health, even if you’re not our client.

thyroid supplement quiz

This gives you a starting point and a method for gathering feedback so that you can organize and track symptomatic improvements, as well as various markers that we’re looking at to determine the best thyroid supplements for you.

Click here to get started and get your own Personalized Plan to help get you back to the happy and healthy you.