Published February 15 2016
Many people with hypothyroidism and Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis take synthetic thyroid hormone medication, also known as levothyroxine. Some of the brands of levothyroxine include Synthroid, Levothroid, Levoxyl, Unithyroid, and Tirosint. There are other brands as well, and the most commonly prescribed brand of synthetic T4 is Synthroid. While Synthroid is the most popular form of synthetic thyroid hormone medication, there definitely are better options, such as Tirosint. Keep in mind that my ultimate goal will always be to address the cause of the problem, but of course some people do need to take thyroid hormone medication, and for those who choose to take synthetic thyroid hormone I want to let them know that there are better options out there.
But how is Tirosint different than Synthroid? There are a few different ways in which Tirosint differs from Synthroid, along with other forms of synthetic thyroid hormone medication. First of all, whereas other brands of levothyroxine are in the form of a tablet, Tirosint is in a liquid form contained in a capsule. Whereas some people with certain gastrointestinal conditions have problems absorbing common levothyroxine tablets, according to the manufacturer’s website, Tirosint has been shown to be unaffected by changes in gastric acid (1).
Another reason why Tirosint is a better option is because unlike Synthroid, Tirosint has no artificial ingredients, gluten, or lactose. Tirosint only contains four ingredients, which include thyroid hormone, gelatin, glycerin, and water. On the other hand, the active ingredients of Synthroid include lactose monohydrate, confectioner’s sugar, and talc. And it also includes color additives. So when someone takes Synthroid and claims that they aren’t doing well, the problem might not be with the thyroid hormone, but the other ingredients.
Are There Better Options Than Tirosint?
While at this point you might be convinced that Tirosint is a better option when compared to Synthroid, you might be wondering if there are better options than Tirosint. With regards to synthetic thyroid hormone medication, as of now I do think Tirosint is the best option. However, some people do better taking a natural form of thyroid hormone such as Armour or Nature-Throid. This is especially true for someone who has a problem converting T4 into T3. There is another option though, as if someone doesn’t want to take natural thyroid hormone but they have a conversion problem, they can always take a form of synthetic T3 (i.e. Cytomel) along with Tirosint.
Another option is to get your thyroid hormone medication formulated by a compound pharmacist. A good compound pharmacist should be able to formulate a hypoallergenic form of thyroid hormone medication. And if someone needs to be on T4 and T3 then they can handle this as well. So for example, if someone is a vegetarian or vegan and doesn’t want to take Tirosint due to the gelatin, then they might want to consider getting their thyroid hormone medication formulated by a compound pharmacist. The downside is that going this route is usually more expensive, but it doesn’t hurt to contact a local compound pharmacy and look into this.
In summary, there are numerous brands of synthetic thyroid hormone medication available. And while most of them include certain ingredients you would want to avoid, Tirosint is hypoallergenic. Of course there are options other than synthetic thyroid hormone, such as Armour and Nature-Throid. And one can also choose to get their medication formulated by a compound pharmacist. But for those people who need to be on synthetic thyroid hormone medication, Tirosint is perhaps the best option available. Of course I need to add that while thyroid hormone medication might be necessary to take, the primary goal should be to address the underlying cause of the condition. For more information on Tirosint you can visit their website at http://www.tirosint.com.