Archive for the ‘Thyroid Eye Disease and Its Healing’ Category

Serrapeptase may help Graves’ eye disease/ Thyroid eye disease

Serrapeptase is a supplement, used for 3 decades in Europe and Asia for treating different ailments and disorders, including eye inflammation. It is enzyme,  found in the digestive track of Japanese silkworm…But, read more…

Some years ago, when I was writing one of my books “Life Stories for Graves’ Disease and Hyperthyroidism” and collecting stories from people about what helped them and what did not, I received the following information from one of my subscribers, Ted Salonica (I am extracting the information that pertains only to this specific product, Serrapeptase).

Serrapeptase for TED“…..What I also found to help me greatly with the inflammation and swelling in and around the eyes is a natural enzyme called Serrapeptase – nature’s steroid, a gift from the silkworm. What does Serrapeptase do? Dead and inflamed tissues are two of the key causes of the majority of ailments in the body. Serrapeptase digests (dissolves) non-living tissue, blood clots, cysts, and arterial plaque and all inflamed tissue which is then dispersed. There is a growing list of conditions that respond to Serrapeptase. In over 25 years of studies and usage no harmful side effects have been found….”

So, I did my homework and researched the above product in details. I found many positive reviews by people who have used it for different disorders, with practically no side effects.

I’ve already published an article on my website about what is Serrapeptase, what is used for,  when you can take it and what to expect, together with some scientific research on the subject. If you are interested in what I have found, check the link below:

Serrapeptase- a supplement for Graves’ eye disease/ Thyroid eye disease

Disclaimer: Consider this post for informational purposes only. Check with your doctor before using the supplement.

P.S. I have no financial interest in recommending this product.

P.S.S. Your comments and experience on the subject are highly appreciated.

Thyroid Eye Disease Treatment- Lutein and Zeaxanthin can help

 Lutein and Zeaxanthin for Thyroid Eye Disease

I have been asked many times by Thyroid Eye Disease (Graves’ Eye Disease) sufferers if there is anything else that can do to improve their eye condition besides the usually recommended Flax Seed oil, eye exercises, cold compresses etc. As a former Thyroid Eye Disease sufferer and a member of the International Thyroid Eye Disease Society I have been researching this topic for years.

Well, it appears that there is something that can improve your condition: Lutein and Zeaxanthin, important nutrients mostly found in green leafy vegetables and all those from Brassica Family (broccoli, spinach, and kale). The last are not only good for inhibiting the overproduction of thyroid hormone, but they appear to positively influence our eyes as well. So, what exactly are these strange sounding and not so popular nutrients?

As the American Optometric Association advises us, these carotenoids actually filter the harmful high-energy blue wavelengths of light and act as antioxidants in the eye, helping protect and maintain healthy cells. They also appear to reduce the risk of chronic eye diseases including the including age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and cataracts. Of the 600 carotenoids found in nature, only two are deposited in high quantities in the retina (macula) of the eye: lutein and zeaxanthin.

Speaking of which,  do you think we should take them as supplements? I say yes, and I have tried them on my own as well. Recently I had to read a lot on the computer and sometimes spent more than 10 hours daily, which for me is a lot. Of course, I don’t have the Thyroid Eye disease any more, but my eyes will get so tired by the end of the day that I can hardly read my books. So I decided to give it a try for a few months. Needless to say my vision became better, I did not have to wear computer glasses all the time and the tiredness was reduced significantly. Plus, sometimes in the evenings it’s difficult for me to drive, but now I have noticed that this inconvenience disappeared as well. What to blame? I say- the Lutein and Zeaxanthin, which I’ve been taken daily for the last 2 months as supplements.

Unfortunately, the human body does not synthesize the lutein and zeaxanthin it needs, which is the reason why green vegetables are essential to good nutrition. Daily intake of lutein and zeaxanthin through diet, nutritional supplements, or other foods and beverages is important for the preservation of good eye health.

How this actually works and how cataracts for example could be prevented, not to mention the blurry vision that pretty much all patients with Graves’ Eye Disease have.

The primary function of the natural lens in the eye is to collect and focus light on the retina. To appropriately provide this function throughout life, the lens must remain clear. It’s like cleaning your windows from time to time, because they become dirty. As for the eye it happens through oxidation and this is the major cause of cataracts, which cloud the lens. As antioxidant nutrients neutralize free radicals associated with oxidative stress and retinal damage, lutein and zeaxanthin likely play a role in cataract prevention. In fact, a recent study demonstrated that higher dietary intakes of lutein and zeaxanthin and vitamin E was associated with a significantly decreased risk of cataract formation.

Lutein and Zeaxanthin also help the Age-Related Macular Degeneration

Recently the The National Eye Institute conducted a second large human clinical trial, Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS2), to confirm whether supplements containing 10 mg a day of lutein and 2 mg of zeaxanthin per day affect the risk of developing of mascular degeneration. Beyond reducing the risk of developing eye disease, separate studies have shown that lutein and zeaxanthin improve visual performance in AMD patients, cataract patients and individuals with good health. Though there is no recommended daily intake for lutein and zeaxanthin, most recent studies show a health benefit for lutein supplementation at 10 mg/day and leaxanthin supplementation at 2 mg/day.

You may say that Thyroid Eye disease has nothing to do with cataracts and aged-related muscle degeneration, but trust me, it does. With Thyroid eye disease your vision is blurred, clouded, and your eye muscles have been extended (as the eye is pushed out of its socket) and they can hardly contract to normal position again without surgery for example. But this is what lutein and zeaxanthin actually do- they prevent the muscular degeneration, and I would say improve as well.

Lutein and zeaxanthin as a combination are sold over the counter in many food or general stores (Walmart, Walgreens, Right Aid, ect.) in the USA and they are pretty affordable as a price, depending on the producer. Follow the instructions on the label.

As disclosed by the American Optometric association the following table contains the amount of these two important nutrients in our food:

Lutein and Zeaxanthin Foods
Food Serving mg
Kale (cooked) 1 cup 23.7
Spinach (cooked) 1 cup 20.4
Collards (cooked) 1 cup 14.6
Turnip greens (cooked) 1 cup 12.2
Spinach (raw) 1 cup 3.7
Green Peas (canned) 1 cup 2.2
Corn (canned) 1 cup 2.2
Broccoli (cooked) 1 cup 1.7
Romaine lettuce (raw) 1 cup 1.3
Carrots (cooked) 1 cup 1.1
Green beans (cooked) 1 cup 0.8
Eggs 2 (large) 0.3
Source: USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 22 (2009)

For more information about Thyroid Eye Disease Remedies, check the following links:

Thyroid Eye Disease Natural Cures

Flax seed oil and Thyroid Eye Disease

Thyroid Eye Disease Remedies

10 Ways to improve Thyroid Eye Disease

Thyroid Eye Disease Healing

Selenium and Grave’s Disease/ Other supplements

This is not a new information in fact, but I am mentioning it here because there was just another scientific research about Thyroid eye disease and Selenium that I feel I should share with all of you..

Recently conducted study titled Selenium and the course of mild Graves’ orbitopathy” was conducted by the Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism, University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy. What happened: They  carried out a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial to determine the effect of selenium (an antioxidant agent) or pentoxifylline (an antiinflammatory agent) in 159 patients with mild Graves’ orbitopathy. The patients were given selenium (100 μg twice daily), pentoxifylline (600 mg twice daily), or placebo (twice daily) orally for 6 months and were then followed for 6 months after treatment was withdrawn. Primary outcomes at 6 months were evaluated by means of an overall ophthalmic assessment, conducted by an ophthalmologist who was unaware of the treatment assignments, and a Graves’ orbitopathy-specific quality-of-life questionnaire, completed by the patient. Secondary outcomes were evaluated with the use of a Clinical Activity Score and a diplopia score.

CONCLUSIONS made by the scientists: Selenium administration significantly improved quality of life, reduced ocular involvement, and slowed progression of the disease in patients with mild Graves’ orbitopathy.

Another older information about selenium as well:

On June 22, 2001 Dr. Barbara Gasnier reported the findings at the 83rd Annual Meeting of the Endocrine Society in Denver, Colorado that selenium supplementation may prevent progression of autoimmune thyroid disease, especially during the onset of the disease. According to the researchers, selenium deficiency appears to contribute to the development and maintenance of autoimmune thyroiditis because of its effect on the function of selenium-dependent enzymes, which can modulate the immune system.

Selenium supplementation with 200mcg of sodium selenite may improve the inflammatory activity seen in patients with autoimmune thyroiditis, but whether this effect is specific for autoimmune thyroiditis or may also be effective in other organ-specific autoimmune diseases remains to be investigated. Selenium supplementation may lower free radical activity, which contributes to inflammation.

It appears that taking selenium without iodine will result in a decrease in production of Thyroxine (T4), although there may be an initial transient increase in T4 to T3 conversion and hence higher T3 and seemingly worse hyperthyroidism.

Bottom line:  Selenium may be helpful for both- hyperthyroidism and thyroid eye disease (mild, but who knows). I know that almost any laboratory can measure if you need any vitamins and supplements. Better check that as well.

I also know that muscle cramps (I used to have a lot of these and they’ll wake me up during the night) are well administered by taking magnesium.

But again, I would just take vitamins and supplements on my own, check better with your family practitioner first.

Stay well,


“Rituximab”- a new hope for Thyroid Eye Disease?

Thyroid Eye Disease and Its Healing

“Rituximab appears to have a significant effect on thyroid eye disease that requires further randomized controlled studies”- this is what says a recent study about a new drug called Rituximab. Is Rituximab the new HOPE?

The information below is quoted from a recently conducted clinical trial on Thyroid Eye Disease with the following authors:

Silkiss RZ, Reier A, Coleman M, Lauer SA.Rituximab for Thyroid Eye Disease.Ophthal Plast Reconstr Surg 2010.DOI: 10.1097/IOP.0b013e3181c4dfde

Rituximab is an intravenously administered chimeric mouse-human monoclonal antibody that targets the CD20 antigen on pre-B and mature B lymphocytes.Hematopoietic stem cells, pro-B cells and normal plasma cells do not express the CD20 antigen, thus rituximab does not induce significant immunosuppression.The Food and Drug Administration approved rituximab in 1997 for the treatment of B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma, and in 2006 it was approved for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and is now being studied as a possible treatment for a number of other autoimmune diseases.Limited information has suggested that rituximab results in B cell depletion in the thyroid gland of patients with Graves’ disease, and a study of the decline in production of specific thyroid stimulating autoantibodies has been reported.

This is a prospective, open-label, interventional clinical trial study that reports the results of a phase I/II safety and efficacy trial of 12 patients treated with rituximab for TED and their 1-year posttreatment clinical course.


Twelve patients with active TED were treated with 2 courses of Rituximab over a 2-week period. There were no adverse effects of the Rituximab infusions and no reported side effects during 1year after the infusion of the drug. There was a significant improvement in CAS scores that was observed 1 month after infusion of Rituximab that was sustained throughout the 12-month observation period.

In conclusion, Rituximab appears to be a drug with promise, but requires larger prospective randomized studies to settle the differences reported in the literature.

I really hope that this can help the thousands of people suffering Thyroid Eye Disease, or Grave’s ophtalmopathy, when nothing else helped.

Feel free to share any experience or information you may have about similar studies.

For more information, check the Free Articles.

10 Ways to Improve Your Thyroid Eye Disease (TED)

Thyroid Eye Disease and Its HealingThyroid Eye Disease is an inflammatory condition which affects the orbital contents including the extraocular muscles and orbital fat. It is almost always associated with Graves’ disease (GD) but may rarely be seen in Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, primary hypothyroidism, or thyroid cancer.  The ocular manifestations of Thyroid Eye Disease (TED) include soft tissue inflammation, eyelid retraction, proptosis, corneal exposure, and optic nerve compression.

The choices now-a-days, available for treating Thyroid Eye Disease and it’s symptoms like bulging eyes, double vision, and protruded eyes can be summarized as follows:

1.       Cold compress on your eyes

2.      Elevating head to relieve swelling

3.      Flax seed oil/ Organic Flax seeds

4.      Lubrication eye drops (avoid the one that are treating red eyes)

5.      Lubrication ointments

6.      Exercises to strengthen the eye muscles (included in my book Life Manual for Graves’ Disease & Hyperthyroidism)

7.      Humidifiers in your room

8.     Wear good sunglasses that are really protecting your eyes (not the ones that you buy for $5, because they are not really protecting your eyes from anything)

9.     Corrective surgery to loosen the eyelids

10.  Decompression surgery

11.   Steroids and prisms  (to correct double vision)

The last 3 are used only in severe cases where nothing else can help.

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