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Can You Drink Coffee With Thyroid Medicine

Impacts The Conversion Of T4 To T3 Hormones

Can I take Thyroid Medicine with Coffee in the Morning? | Levothyroxine and Coffee

Coffee impacts the absorption of levothyroxine this is why thyroid patients need to take their hormone replacement pill at least an hour before drinking coffee.

The indirect but important point is that coffee contributes to estrogen dominance, cited above, and estrogen dominance inhibits T4 to T3 conversion.

Coffee Helps Protect Your Thyroid Gland From Thyroid Cancer

Unfortunately, theres not much research with respect to coffees direct effects on the thyroid gland.

The research that is available does suggest that coffee reduces your risk of thyroid cancer and also helps lower TSH , which provides additional protective effects.

Does coffee consumption protect against thyroid disease?

Statistical analysis revealed a strikingly negative association between benign and malignant thyroid disease and consumption of coffee. After adjustment for possible confounding variables, the association remained statistically significant.

The protective effects of coffee against thyroid cancer are further supported by additional evidence.

First, caffeine is known to increase cyclic AMP, which inhibits cancer cell growth.

Second, as well cover in detail in just a bit, coffee is also well-known to reduce the risk of numerous other types of cancer.

Unfortunately, some also attempt to argue the thyroid protective effects of coffee based on unreliable studies.

For example, one meta-analysis study found no correlation between coffee and thyroid cancer, however, the author was unable to draw this conclusion due to the unreliability of the study data stating

While there is still room for plenty of additional research, the research that is available has demonstrated a significantly lower risk of thyroid cancer among coffee drinkers.

Coffee And Thyroid Hormone Absorption

Many people love coffee. But, one of the things that many people dont know is that coffee can impair the absorption of thyroid medications, and thus, it needs to be spaced out from thyroid medications.

A person with normal digestive function can take thyroid medications 15-30 minutes prior to breakfast and have the medications be well absorbed, but some people may need to postpone breakfast by a minimum of 60 minutes after taking thyroid medications, for proper absorption.

As far as coffee and thyroid meds go, Italian researchers found that their first-thing-in-the-morning-espresso-loving patients did not absorb their thyroid medications correctly. This is because coffee lowers the intestinal absorption of both inorganic and organic compounds, and seems to physically interact with thyroid medications.

In another Italian study, one person who was drinking espresso within 10 minutes of thyroid medications, had a consistently elevated TSH between 13 IU/mL and 18 IU/mL. The same person, on the same dose of medication, was later made to wait one hour to have her coffee, and took her medication with a full glass of water instead. With this new change, her TSH was now testing between to 0.03-0.1IU/mL every time she had it tested.

While most of the studies on coffee and thyroid hormone absorption have been done with levothyroxine, anecdotally, people taking T3 and natural dessicated thyroid hormones can also have a problem with absorbing them if theyre taking them with coffee.

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Alternate Dosing Avoids Coffee With Synthroid:

A. That is a good question. The FDA includes a warning about fiber reducing levothyroxine absorption in its prescribing information available to every doctor.

Quite a few foods can affect Synthroid absorption. Coffee and soybeans can significantly reduce the amount of levothyroxine that is absorbed, while vitamin C increases absorption . If you like a latte, or put milk on your bran flakes, the plot thickens. Cows milk also interferes with optimal levothyroxine absorption .

The Change We Resist The Most Is Often The Change We Need The Most

Pin on Thyroid

Many people who have made extensive dietary changes will admit that coffee was the last and hardest thing to eliminate from their diets. Coffee is our ritual its our best friend.

But is it really? It is often said that the change we resist the most is the change our body needs the most. Let your intuition be your guide.

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The Impact Of Caffeine On Thyroid Health

Many of the people I consult with consume an excess amount of caffeine each day. Most people do this in the form of drinking coffee, although some drink too much soda. Some people do both, drinking both coffee and soda on a regular basis. Others drink tea on a daily basis. While its a big challenge getting people to eat well and manage their stress, it can be just as difficult for people to avoid caffeine when they are accustomed to consuming it everyday.

Is Caffeine Really That Bad For You?

In small amounts, caffeine usually isnt a problem for most people. The problem is that many people dont consume a small amount of caffeine, but instead consume a lot of it each day, and this doesnt just have an impact on their thyroid health, but their overall health as well. As for how it affects thyroid function, consuming caffeine will increase the metabolism, which of course is regulated by the thyroid gland. So if someone drinks a lot of coffee or soda on a daily basis, then this will affect the metabolism of the body. This might sound good for someone who is hypothyroid, although this isnt necessarily the case, and Ill explain why below.

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Part of this depends on the health of the persons adrenal glands. If someone has adrenal glands that are extremely compromised, then its probably best for them to avoid drinking coffee or tea altogether for at least a few months .

Contributes To Acid Reflux And Damages Gut Lining

Coffee stimulates the release of gastrin, the main gastric hormone, which speeds up intestinal transit time. Coffee can also stimulate the release of bile and digestive enzymes.

In a person with a healthy digestion, this is not a big deal. However, for people with autoimmune conditions like Hashimotos and Graves, compromised digestion , this can cause further digestive damage to the intestinal lining .

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How Should You Take Your Levothyroxine

Q. I read on your website that you should not drink coffee within one hour of taking a thyroid pill. My endocrinologist disagrees with you. He said I can have coffee with levothyroxine, though I still should wait 45 minutes before eating breakfast.

Since I started taking this medication, 15 months ago, my thyroid level has remained the same even though I drink coffee right after taking my pill. Am I just lucky, or is the warning wrong?

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  • Total378

Do you drink coffee?

Ever wonder if its actually good or bad for you and your thyroid health?

Some love coffee and say that they cant live without it .

Others claim that coffee is nothing more than an addictive stimulant that is ruining the lives of millions of people who consume it daily.

Well, one thing is certain coffee is one of the most widely consumed beverages in the world.

Its also one of the largest sources of antioxidants in the human diet.

Yet, there are a lot of anti-coffee claims out there such as:

  • Coffee increases stress hormones and should be avoided due to adrenal-fatigue because our lives today are inundated with stress
  • Coffee worsens thyroid function and should never be used in cases of hormonal issues.
  • Caffeine over-stimulates the body and depletes the body of nutrients.

The good news is that all of these common anti-coffee claims have one thing in common

theyre all FALSE.

And were here to set the record straight.

Unfortunately, coffee is one of the most misunderstood foods with respect to its health benefits.

In this article youre going to learn:

  • How coffee and caffeine both boost and protect your thyroid health on numerous levels.
  • How coffee and caffeine reduce your risk of almost every disease from heart disease, to cancer, to diabetes, and even neurodegenerative brain diseases.
  • How coffee and caffeine help you to be healthier and live a higher quality of life.

Now, lets get a couple of things straight.

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About Dr Kent Holtorf

Kent Holtorf, M.D. is the medical director of the Holtorf Medical Group with locations in Los Angeles, Foster City, Atlanta, and Philadelphia. He is also founder and director of the non-profit National Academy of Hypothyroidism , which is dedicated to dissemination of new information to doctors and patients on the diagnosis and treatment of hypothyroidism.

Dr. Holtorf has personally trained numerous physicians across the country in the use of bioidentical hormones, hypothyroidism, complex endocrine dysfunction, and innovative treatments of chronic fatigue syndrome, weight loss, fibromyalgia, and chronic infectious diseases, including Lyme disease.

He has been a featured guest on numerous TV shows including CNBC, ABC News, CNN, EXTRA TV, Discovery Health, The Learning Channel, The Today Show, The Doctors, Dr. Dean Edell, Glenn Beck, Nancy Grace, Fox Business, ESPN, Rush Limbaugh, CBS Sunday Morning, Sean Hannity, So Cal News, and quoted in numerous print media including the Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, US New and World Report, San Francisco Chronicle, WebMD, Health, Elle, Better Homes and Garden, US Weekly, Forbes, Cosmopolitan, New York Daily News, Self magazine, among many others.


  • Benvenga, S., et al. Altered Intestinal Absorption of L-Thyroxine Caused by Coffee. Thyroid. 2008 18:293-301.
  • Mazzaferri, E. Thyroid Hormone Therapy. Clinical Thyroidology for Patients: Summaries for Patients from Clinical Thyroidology. 2008 Vol 1, Iss 1.
  • Can You Survive Without Thyroid Medication

    However, without thyroid replacement medication , a person with overt hypothyroidism cannot function optimally and will suffer from the physical and mental symptoms of hypothyroidism . The half-life of levothyroxine is 6-7 days, which means it takes about 4-5 weeks for your body to rid itself of levothyroxine.

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    How Can Caffeine Have A Positive Effect On Hypothyroidism

    Hypothyroidism or an underactive thyroid gland can be a result of the inflammation caused by Hashimotos Thyroiditis. Hashimotos dominant characteristic is an increase in Th1 cytokines.

    When caffeine enters the system, it decreases Th1 and leads to a positive outcome when an underactive thyroid and coffee interact within your body.

    Th1 cytokines ultimately eliminate intracellular parasites and maintain an autoimmune response, which is a good thing, but then again in excess can be harmful.

    In this case, too much Th1 will cause damage to your tissues and cause other health conditions like hypothyroidism so, coffee can help lessen the possibility of that happening.

    Additionally, you should keep in mind that this only holds true for hypothyroidism. With hyperthyroidism, it is best that all stimulants shall be avoided including coffee.

    Can I Take Levothyroxine With Coffee In The Morning

    Can I take Levothyroxine with Coffee in the Morning ...

    Inside: Evaluating if taking coffee and levothyroxine is fine or not! Is Coffee bad for thyroid? How in hypothyroidism, coffee can interfere with the absorption of Synthroid. And finally can you drink decaffeinated coffee and levothyroxine?

    If you have been diagnosed with hypothyroidism or underactive thyroid then the most common treatment is to support thyroid with levothyroxine/Synthroid.

    Hypothyroidism is a very common condition and more and more people, especially females are on thyroid medications.

    Most of the time people will take their thyroid medication in the morning as has been suggested by their physicians.

    Patients have been instructed to take thyroid medicine without any food, but a lot of time there is no discussion about what kind of beverage people should use to take their medicine.

    I realised that several people were taking their morning coffee and levothyroxine/ synthroid together.

    They just do not consider coffee as food, but rather they think its a beverage like water also no one asked if they can you drink coffee with levothyroxine, neither were they instructed against the use of coffee, so they thought it was fine.

    I mean who doesnt like a good cup of coffee in the morning to start their day.

    But the question is can coffee interfere with absorption of thyroid medicine

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    How Long After Drinking Coffee Can I Take My Thyroid Medication

    coffeethethyroid medicationsafter drinking coffeetake your thyroidmedicationAfter taking your thyroid meddrinking coffee

    Researchers have found that for patients taking levothyroxine tablets, absorption is affected by drinking coffee within an hour of taking thyroid drugs. This is why experts recommend that you wait at least 60 minutes after taking the levothyroxine to drink your coffee.

    Additionally, what happens if you eat right after taking thyroid medicine? For the most part, you shouldn’t have problems with most foods if you wait at least 45 minutes after taking your thyroid medication before you eat. If you eat about the same amount every day, your healthcare provider has probably found the proper dose of thyroid hormone to counteract soy’s effects.

    Then, does caffeine affect thyroid?

    An excess of caffeine combined with a high carb diet can wear out your adrenal gland. This slows down the thyroid gland and is one of the primary causes of hypothyroidism. Coffee is high inflammatory. This means that it causes damage on a cellular level.

    How long after eating can I take levothyroxine?

    With levothyroxine, many physicians believe that taking the drug first thing in the morning allows for the best absorption. After the medication is taken, avoid eating anything for at least one hour.

    Coffee And Adrenal Health

    I understand that coffee may be a mainstay for many of you and its something that you may not think you can live without.

    But, is it something you should consider taking a break from?

    The answer may be yes.

    Coffee not only has a potentially negative impact on your thyroid and medication absorption but it also may affect other hormone systems in your body.

    The caffeine found within coffee has a stimulatory effect on your body and may help increase the secretion of certain adrenal hormones from your adrenal glands .

    Hormones such as norepinephrine and epinephrine, otherwise known as adrenaline, are increased after caffeine consumption.

    These catecholamines impact a number of important cells in your body including heart cells, brain cells, and so on.

    It’s felt that the release of these metabolites probably plays a significant role in why consuming caffeine leads to increased alertness and focus.

    But there’s one potential problem with this.

    Constant consumption of caffeine may put a supraphysiologic demand on your adrenal function.

    Put another way:

    Caffeine may be trying to force your body to create more adrenaline and hormones than is healthy for your body.

    In addition, consuming caffeine is great but it can have a negative impact if it’s constantly used to keep yourself awake during the day due to decreased sleep at night.

    This sort of scenario is one in which you are robbing Peter of pay Paul.

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    Can Proper Dosage Help

    Taking prescription medication is importantto maintain your health or treat some medical conditions. And weve seen howcoffee can impact their effectiveness. However, for many people, the verythought of having to go through the day without a dose of caffeine isunbearable. What can you do in this situation?

    For starters, you need to discuss thisissue with your physician. Second, you can program coffee cup sizes to get theoptimal amount of caffeine that will help you function without interfering withthe drug absorption.

    Caffeine And Levothyroxine Absorption

    Thyroid Medication Tips

    Studies have found that drinking coffee at the same time or shortly after taking your L-T4 tablets can significantly lower the absorption of the thyroid medication in your intestines.

    Melissa Ling / Verywell

    The caffeine in coffee is believed to be the cause of this effect. Caffeine can produce an increase in intestinal motility, or intestinal movement. It may also induce an increase in the amount of fluid that flows from your body into your intestines, which results in loose stools. Both of these can make your oral medication pass through your intestines rapidly. In fact, some of the medication may leave your body in the stool before it has a chance to become absorbed into your system.

    With lower absorption, the medicine will have less of the intended effect, which increases your risk of experiencing the symptoms of hypothyroidism.

    Researchers have found that for patients taking levothyroxine tablets, absorption is affected by drinking coffee within an hour of taking thyroid drugs. This is why experts recommend that you wait at least 60 minutes after taking the levothyroxine to drink your coffee.

    This decreased L-T4 absorption can occur when you drink coffee, caffeinated tea, hot cocoa, or caffeinated soft drinks before or shortly after taking your L-T4, although it has been most commonly studied with coffee.

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    Coffee Helps Protect Against Cancer


    There have been dozens of studies observing incidence of cancer among coffee drinkers vs. non-coffee drinkers.

    The results are striking.

    Coffee doesnt only help protect you from thyroid cancer.

    It also helps protect against a number of other cancers, for example:

    • Breast Cancer
    • Pharynx Cancer
    • And more.

    Reducing the risk of breast cancer is extremely important, as postmenopausal women with hypothyroidism and/or Hashimotos thyroiditis are at much greater risk.

    Not only does coffee reduce your risk of developing most types of cancer it is also associated with smaller tumor sizes and less aggressive tumors among those who do develop cancer.

    Is Caffeine Bad For Your Thyroid

    There is no universal answer to caffeine consumption that applies to everyone with hypothyroidism or Hashimoto’s. For some, caffeine may trigger unwanted thyroid symptoms. In contrast, others may experience few side effects other than the pleasure of a warm drink. However, caffeine intake in moderate doses is unlikely to cause any adverse effects on your endocrine system.

    Some people find that giving up caffeine after ongoing use can improve troublesome symptoms. However, this process can be challenging because your body needs to adjust to functioning without its usual dose of caffeine. If you decide to stop your caffeine intake, do so gradually as an abrupt stop can lead to uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms that start within 24 hours of your last dose and could last for 36 hours or more.

    Symptoms of caffeine withdrawal can include:

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