It’s a term I, and so many other sources for thyroid information, use a lot. What Are Optimal Thyroid Levels?
A lot of conventional medicine doctors and endocrinologists refuse to acknowledge that it’s not just about falling ‘in range’, but it’s where in range you fall that matters. It matters entirely. Functional doctors support these levels.
Put simply, when your doctor runs a test and you get the results, optimal levels are the results that most thyroid patients state they feel best at. This is a place within a given ‘range’.
Sources such as Stop The Thyroid Madness, Hypothyroid Mom and Mary Shomon as well as functional medicine, all agree that a TSH less than 2 is considered optimal. Mary Shomon has covered it here. This means that most thyroid patients feel most well when their TSH is less than 2. For you, you may feel best at 0.5, 1.2 or 1.9, but you should try to find out and maintain it at what you feel best at.
Free T3 and Free T4 must also always be tested to measure thyroid hormone levels.
A Free T3 in the top quarter of the range is recommended, with a Free T4 mid-range or a little higher. I do personally feel best at these.
It is important to understand that different labs/doctors use different ranges, so you must interpret your results individually; don’t compare them to anyone else’s. A Free T4 at 14, with a range of 9-19, is mid-range for example, but a Free T4 at 11 is mid-range for a range of 7.5-14.5. So both are considered optimal readings.
It’s important to be aware that a suppressed TSH alone doesn’t mean you’re hyperthyroid/over medicated. If your free t3 and free t4 are still within range then they show you are not hyper/over medicated.
You must look at your result in comparison to the given range, usually stated in brackets, beside it. Where does it fall?
I always tell people to get their thyroid test results printed off, for ease of reference and comparison as you try things to correct your thyroid levels and reach good health. You can post them in my Facebook support group, as we’re happy to help you understand, too.
You can click on the hyperlinks in the above post to learn more and see references to information given, but more reading and references can also be found at:
Written by Rachel, The Invisible Hypothyroidism
Rachel is a Thyroid Patient Advocate and Expert with Six 2018 WEGO Health Award Nominations. She is a highly ranked writer appearing in the Top Hypothyroidism Websites and Top Thyroid Websites 2018. Currently studying for relevant qualifications and certificates in Life Coaching, Diet and Nutrition, Reflexology and more, she has worked with The National Academy of Hypothyroidism, The BBC, The Mighty, Dr. Hedberg, Thyroid UK and ThyroidChange, to name just a few. She is well recognised as a trusted and useful contributor to the thyroid community.