Paraboy, I am one of those who is working to resolve my hypothyroid, but I am not fully there yet. I'm willing to bet there are more like me who are somewhat active on this forum, maybe even lurkers who never post, etc. who have not yet posted serious testimony because we are still in the process. I don't feel I'm well enough on the other side of health improvements to provide any quality 'testimony' at this point.
Anyways, I am doing it all naturally (diet, iodine+cosupps) and without any hormone replacement therapy. I would say I'm making improvement with most symptoms, but still present with hypo symptoms. I haven't had my T3 or T4 checked in about 4 months and doubt that I will anytime soon, due to losing health insurance. I am also the poster who had the slight drop in D levels after starting to supplement, but chronologically I think that drop may have been more effected by winter/reduced sunlight than supping (1st draw hydroxy-D 29 in october, 2nd draw hydroxy-D 24 in January)
Here's my laundry list of symptoms that I have been tracking. I have listed them in order or relative improvement.
* feeling cold, especially in the extremities - this is the most marked improvement. I take a later afternoon temp (in addition to my basal morning temps) for the purpose of tracking this data. I used to be anywhere from 97.6-97.9 on average in the afternoons. I am now between 98.6-98.9, depending upon where I am at in my monthly cycle. I am thrilled for this change.
* dry, itchy skin/splitting nails - I no longer have any splitting nails. Also, no more dry skin, I mean not a single patch all winter. That is the first time in my life. It is only important that I disclose one of my diet interventions for hypo has been coconut oil and overall more quality fats, which I think has a lot to do with these symptom improvements.
* constipation - all digestive areas have improved with the introduction of the protocol. It should be noted that I adopted fermented foods shortly before the protocol, and think this has a lot to do with that improvement.
* coarse, thinning hair - I am still losing hair, but it has slowed down. It is visibly thicker and shinier these days. I noticed that about a month after the MSM was added my hair increased in shininess. Still some odd, coarse patches.
* fatigue, exhaustion, and sluggish
* difficulty concentrating, brain fog
For all three of those, I would gauge only slight improvement. But this is a hard one for me to measure objectively, and you will note that those improvements I report above are clearly easier to objectively identify. Again, I am still in the detox phase, which I believe is another factor. I have days with high energy, no depression, and sharp as a tack. Other days, I'm a mess. Obviously there is so much that goes into these symptoms, but overall I attribute the improvement I have to the diet and iodine+cosupps.
* infertility/miscarriage - this is a big one for me, and contributes to the Depression described above. I can't weigh in on whether or not iodine+cosupps have helped with this because we stopped actively trying when I started to supplement. We won't be trying again for months.
I am a work in progress. While I would love to post some concrete, before and after "i've been saved from hypo by iodine!!" post, I'm just not there yet.
I do believe it is possible (for me at least) without the hormone replacement options.
I'm not going anywhere, I will hopefully have more to post across the coming months :)