This post was originally written in 2011…but Isocort stopped being made afterwards. Today, what replaces it is Thorne’s Adrenal Cortex (NOT Cortrex, but Cortex). Amazon always carries it.
If you haven’t heard the latest, Isocort, an over-the-counter adrenal support product that has been favored by adrenally-challenged patients with minor to moderate adrenal problems, as well as favored by their forward-thinking doctors, has been reformulated.
Now for thyroid patients who loved Armour, “reformulated” is a nasty word. Armour lowered its sucrose, raised its cellulose, and most patients who had been on it successfully for years reported a return of symptoms. The partial solution has been to chew it up before swallowing.
But with IsoCort, the change “may” still be workable. All the following is right on the Isocort page on STTM. As we get more information on it, I’ll be adding to it:
IsoCort has changed! As of early 2011, Bezwecken changed the product from a bovine adrenal cortex to a fermented plant-derived cortisol, joining over 100 other chemical substances which are plant derived.
Why has Isocort always been popular with thyroid/adrenal patients? For years, patients favored Isocort because unlike so many other adrenal support products on the over-the-counter market, it was made solely from the adrenal cortex, i.e from New Zealand sheep. That is an important distinction since the cortex only contains cortisol as compared to whole adrenal glandular products which contain both cortisol and adrenaline (epinephrine). And giving yourself more adrenaline was the last thing you would want as an adrenally-challenged, low cortisol individual. Dysfunctional adrenals already cause the production of too much adrenaline as it is, resulting in anxiety, an increased heartrate and further stress on your already-stressed adrenals.
Will this change to plant derived affect the way Isocort works in me? Hopefully not. As before, it only contains cortisol and avoids the unneeded adrenaline that you get from adrenal glandulars.
What’s in the newly-reformulated IsoCort? Besides the cortisol, Isocort still contains Echinacea, as Echinacea Purpurea (6 mg per pellet). It also contains Lactose, Magnesium Stearate, Starch Arrowroot, Maltodextrin, Microcrystalline Cellulose, Magnesium Silicate, and Lactase.
Previously, it was listed as follows: Freeze-Dried Adrenal Cortex (soluble fractionation) from New Zealand Sheep. Echinacea Extract (trace amount). Prunus and Lomatium dissectum root isolate (kreb concentrate-2%) in pellet base of lactose and lactase.
In other words, it still contains lactose and lactase, but the rest you see are new.
Why did they change the bovine adrenal cortex to plant derived cortisol? For one, the change now makes the product vegetarian-friendly. And it now joins a group of over 100 plant-derived substances made out there which are effective.
Can you tell me more about it being plant derived? Medicinal plants have always contained substances that are helpful for humans. Aspirin is one good example, made from willow or other salicylate-rich plants. In fact, there are so many medicinal plants out there that we haven’t even begun to touch the surface of using them! China is an exception, having used plants for thousands of years. It’s said that the practice of ayurvedic in Asia uses nearly 2000 different kinds of plant species. The Botanical Garden of the National Autonomous University of Mexico has stated there are approximately 3,500 species of medicinal plants in Mexico alone. And more and more cancer drugs are going to be plant-derived.
How do patients use IsoCort? When after doing a 24 hour saliva cortisol test, it’s discovered there are some low cortisol readings, the use of Isocort gives back the cortisol that the sluggish adrenal/HPA function is not giving. You can read more about dysfunctional adrenal function here. After reading that page, you’ll see a link on what patients have learned in treating it, plus references to other websites and patient groups.
Are there any other OTC adrenal cortex products out there? Yes. If you will use your favorite search engine and put in adrenal cortex supplements, you’ll find other sources. Just read the labels correctly to make sure it’s only adrenal cortex.
* To read four facts about plant-derived medications, go here.
* To read why you may need cortisol, go here.
* For good patient groups, go here.
FREE T3/REVERSE T3 ON-LINE CALCULATOR ADDED TO STTM
Not doing well as you raise your desiccated thyroid as compared to others? Have dysfunctional adrenals or low ferritin/low iron?? You may be making far too much Reverse T3 (RT3), which clogs cell receptors and prevents regular T3 from getting to your cells. And the best way to find out is to understand the RATIO BETWEEN YOUR FREE T3 and REVERSE T3.
But figuring out that ratio may be daunting for some who hate math. So to counter that problem, STTM now has a page where you can plug in your two lab results and the measurements and get your ratio number: https://stopthethyroidmadness.com/rt3-ratio Please note that there are currently three combinations that are not in there, but are being worked on as I write this by STTM’s brainy techs. Hopefully by next week, you’ll see all of the possible combinations!
To read more about Reverse T3, go here.
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14 Responses to “Isocort has been changed, plus a new STTM on-line RT3 ratio calculator”
Is Isocort or something similar still available to purchase online? I cannot find it.
Any other OTC product available at this point?
How do you find an adrenal cortex product that does NOT have adrenal estrogen in it as well?
Have never known anyone who had problems with the small amount of estrogen in the adrenals.
Now all Isocort variations have been discontinued and after two weeks I am having trouble with my NTH. Any suggestions for OTC replacement? Thanks!
Leah, any adrenal cortex product.
“Can you tell me more about it being plant derived?”…that paragraph does NOT even attempt to answer the question!
(Lynne, try googling “plant derived medications”. Should give you great info!)
“I don’t see how plant source can be the same as animal source. if it worked that way, the herbs & plants would work on us with trashed thyroids.”
Trying to understand why plant source can be equally beneficial as in an animal source. Most of the adaptogens like Holy basil (Tulsi as we call in India), Ashwagandha (Sensoril), Licorice..just to name a few have been proved to stabilise cortisol ups and downs. Isocort may be following the route like Gaia herbs (adrenal health) which has all kinds of adaptogens.
Personal experience : After experimenting with Bovine sources, Ovine sources, whole glandular, adrenal cortex, is there anythoing left at all for me? I wondered and i was familiar with the herbs like ashwagandha (I am from India and from a family which used Ayurveda as main medicinal system well i didnt follow). Tried Gaia herbs and am still taking it for, I have never felt so good, so much in un-anxious state (or is it called Calm!!!) and more nicer effects for a person who is struggling with a cocktail of things – Fibro, AS, (sacro-iilitis), hypoT( in spite of perfect test results),Low ferritin, Adrenal screwup, anxiety, you name it…diagnosed at 29, now 37..Spent a lot of money on various things – my medicine cabinet looks like an apothecary! ;-). Great site, sharing is so good, so this big message. – Anu
Which Gaia product are you taking? Thanks!
I have been getting the typical thyroid tests, only to show within normal range. This time…I DEMANDED an RT3 test. I was out of range at 380.
You can still get this test. There are labs online that offer it. Demand your doctor test for it. RT3 when excessive suppresses T3…which is critical.
Online, this test runs around $89.
I’ve been told by the lab that RT3 is no longer at test they can run. Mayo had done away with it? Has anyone else been told this? I’ve never had an RT3 test. After reading this site I asked to have it done- no luck here because of the lab instead of the doctor..
(From Janie: use a different lab facility: https://stopthethyroidmadness.com/recommended-labwork )
Lisa Barnes Murray
Sucks! It was just fine the way it was made. It must cost LESS to make it from a plant source. There’s no question the animal source for the adrenal part is superior to the plant.
It can be difficult to get a doctor to even test RT3!!
if it’s sheep source, it’s Ovine. beef is Bovine. just in case someone gets confused. and, I don’t see how plant source can be the same as animal source. if it worked that way, the herbs & plants would work on us with trashed thyroids.