Third-generation physician and thyroid specialist, the grandson of Eugene Hertoghe.

Jacques Hertoghe was a third-generation Belgian physician and thyroid specialist. He was the grandson of Eugene Hertoghe. In the 1970s, this Hertoghe was so disappointed by the ineffectiveness of Europe’s synthetic thyroid treatments that he traveled to Colorado (without a drug company sponsor) to study Dr. Barnes’ use of Armour Thyroid. He was originally intrigued by the reports in Barnes’ book and soon Jacques Hertoghe recognized that natural desiccated (natural) thyroid was the most effective medication available for treating hypothyroidism. Hertoghe used the Armour brand of desiccated thyroid as his primary treatment for hypothyroidism for the rest of his career. To this day, Belgium is the only country in Europe where Armour Thyroid is legally imported.

Beyond insisting on effective treatment of hypothyroidism, Jacques Hertoghe pioneered the use of combined treatments for patients with multiple hormonal deficiencies. He taught that health depended on a healthy balance of multiple hormones and not just a single hormone.

In addition, Jacques Hertoghe emphasized the importance of bio-identical (“natural”) female hormones to restore a healthy balance in menopausal and even premenopausal women. In the 1980’s, this Hertoghe noted that the synthetic estrogens and progestins that were in wide use actually had many dangerous side effects. He also noted that “natural” hormones were also available that worked very well and did not pose the same risk.

I was reminded of the genius of Jacques Hertoghe when I read of European study that showed that women given synthetic progesterone had a 50% greater risk of breast cancer than women who were given natural progesterone. In fact, the women given real human estrogen and real progesterone actually had a lower rate of breast cancer than women who took no hormones at all.

Unfortunately, Jacque Hertoghe’s vast knowledge and research have never been published in a book. Luckily, we do have some of his lectures still available on tape through the Broda Barnes Research Foundation. And we have two of his children who are physicians in Belgium and are still practicing what their father preached.

Jacques Hertoghe’s advice to all physicians: “Whenever possible, use the natural molecule.”


J. H. (Director) Clinical Diagnosis of Hypothyroidism. Lecture conducted from Broda Barnes Foundation, Trumbull, CT .

Dr. Jacques Hertoghe, M.D. Treatment of Hypothyroidism. (n.d.). Retrieved December 5, 2014, from