Have you been doing all the ‘right’ things but still have several health concerns? There is so much information thrown at us these days and it’s quite confusing. Sometimes, it comes down to doing some digging to find the underlying cause to your symptoms. Instead of chasing symptoms, I put on my health detective coat and get to searching for the root cause.
There are so many symptoms that we hear people dealing with on a daily basis that seem so normal, right? Well just because they are common doesn’t mean they are normal. Some of these include not being able to conceive, trouble falling and staying asleep, bloating, gas and other digestive problems, fatigue, muscle and joint pain, headaches, skin issues and so many more. These are all flags to tell us that there is a bigger underlying problem. That’s where I come in to search out the root cause through functional lab work. We will test the hormone, immune, digestive, detoxification, and intestinal barrier systems of the body.
Remember that I’m not a doctor so I don’t diagnose or treat disease. We will work together to rebuild your foundation of health by eliminating all the hidden stressors in your body. When the body gets some R&R and the support it needs, it can balance and heal itself. We just have to get out of our own way.
Functional Lab Tests I Run
The Adrenal Stress Profile is a saliva test that assesses adrenal function and and can reveal maladaptation to stressors. Chronic stress resulting in an abnormal cortisol rhythm can negatively influence energy, the immune system, muscle and joint function, sleep quality; liver, pancreas and thyroid function. The test also gives insight to the steroidal hormone balance and pathways. It evaluates DHEA and its metabolites, including progesterone, testosterone, and the estrogens – as well as the ‘sleep hormone’, melatonin.
The adrenal glands produce the complementary hormones cortisol and dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA). The Adrenal Stress Profile consists of a series of saliva tests that measure the level of cortisol four times daily to establish its circadian rhythm. Additionally, this test measures a two-sample average of the sulfated form of DHEA (DHEA-S), and related metabolites including progesterone, estradiol, estriol, testosterone, and melatonin. Assessing the cortisol rhythm and DHEA-S average is a critical first step in new client evaluation as well as a fundamental component in follow-up studies.
Conditions that may be assessed include adrenal malfunction, often misdiagnosed as thyroid malfunction, but that may include thyroid malfunction as well.
This test is a great first step in assessing your hormone status. If you are struggling with weight loss, fatigue, infertility, insomnia or low sex drive you can gain a lot of insight from this test.
BH101 Metabolic Assessment Profile
The Metabolic Assessment Profile is a urine test that measures the ability to digest and absorb protein. It assesses the level of oxidative stress in the body, which is associated with a multitude of symptoms, degenerative diseases and premature aging. It also evaluates and the liver’s detoxification function. Compromised liver function leads to a buildup of toxic substances that can damage liver cells and lead to increased risk for cancer and a variety of other degenerative diseases.
The metabolic assessment is a great starter lab to look into digestion, detoxification and chronic stress conditions. This panel can provide you with important information about the management of disorders related to chronic stress and a myriad of health complaints.
The three markers interrelate on many levels, influencing one another as well as other body functions.
Indican is a by-product of the metabolic bacterial breakdown in the stomach and in the small intestine. It helps in screening for:
- Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth
- Maldigestion and malabsorption
- Protein digestion
- Pancreatic insufficiency
Bile acids are a by product of liver detoxification. In healthy individuals, these usually occur in low amounts. When bile acids are elevated, it indicates liver malfunction and increased toxic load. Elevated bile acids can also indicate:
- Liver disease
- Poor detoxification
Elevated lipid peroxides indicate damage to the cells caused by free radicals. It is used as a screening for:
- Oxidative stress
- Free radical damage
- Antioxidant therapy
An elevation in any of these markers can cause chronic stress on the body which throws the hormones out of balance.
INTESTINAL PERMEABILITY ASSESSMENT
The Genova Intestinal Permeability Assessment is a comprehensive test for increased intestinal permeability, also know as leaky gut.
In a healthy individual the intestinal tract and the blood are separated by a mucosal barrier system. This means that everything we eat does not end up in general circulation. This barrier system is meant to be selectively permeable which means that some things can pass through it (vitamins, minerals, nutrients) and some things cannot (viruses, pathogens, toxins, etc.). A number of circumstances can cause the intestine to become leaky which means that anything, including harmful bacteria, undigested food and toxins, can leak into the blood. Once these things are in the blood they have the potential to come in contact with every cell in the body.
Leaky gut has been observed in a wide range of disorders including:
- Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)
- Food allergy
- Inflammatory joint disease
- Chronic dermatologic conditions
When healing hormones, leaky gut is something that needs to be address. Leaky gut can cause serious inflammation and breakdown in the intestinal tract which can reduce breakdown and absorption of food. With proper nutrient assimilation, hormones cannot functional optimally.
GASTROINTESTINAL PATHOGEN SCREEN BH401H
Gut issues and dysbiosis are a common root cause of hormone problems. It is not uncommon to find multiple infections in clients suffering from severe hormone imbalance. When the gut gets unhealthy, due to pharmaceutical drugs, antibiotics, food allergies, stress or alcohol consumption, it can no longer fight against incoming pathogens. Pathogens are generally opportunistic and will spread throughout the body if they are allowed to.
Pathogens, such as bacteria, parasites and yeast can cause an exceptional amount of damage to digestive system. They can breakdown the gut, cause leaky gut, inflammation and interfere with the normal digestive process. Pathogenic infections are a huge blocking factor in the healing process. They must be eradicated from the body before the client can move forward in the healing process.
This comprehensive stool tests for parasites plus antigens for Giardia lamblia, Cryptosporidium parvum, Entamoeba histolytica, and Helicobacter pylori. It also includes a culture for bacteria, yeast (candida), occult blood, Clostridium difficile: Colitis toxins A & B.
Oxford MRT® (Food Sensitivity)
The Mediated Release Test is a blood test for 150 common foods and commonly added chemicals and additives. It is the most accurate food sensitivity test available (93.6% split sample reproducibility). Not only does MRT® give insight into inflammation provoking foods and food-chemicals, but more importantly MRT® identifies your BEST foods – the foods that form the basis of their LEAP Eating Plan.
IgG (immunoglobulin G) testing is a useful guide for structuring elimination diets in many chronic conditions. Individuals with neurological, gastrointestinal, and movement disorders often suffer from IgG food allergies. These people may continue to eat offending foods unaware of their potential effects.
As immunological reactions, IgE food allergy causes the release of histamine, producing an immediate hypersensitivity reaction, in which symptoms appear within minutes or hours. In contrast, food sensitivity is a non-IgE allergy characterized by the measurement of IgG antibodies specific to antigenic food proteins.
This IgG food allergy is a delayed hypersensitivity reaction in which symptoms appear anywhere from hours to days after eating the offending food.
If you want to balance your hormones, you must address your food sensitivities. Foods that are causing inflammation create a chronic stress response in the body, leading to hormone imbalance and depletion.
Removing suspect foods is vital to your health. This test can help you in structuring an elimination diet and improving your health quickly.
Small Intestinal Overgrowth Screening
Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO) is a serious digestive disturbance which can be treated effectively, but only if it is accurately diagnosed.
You have over 100 trillion bacterial organisms in our gut. The range and species vary depending on the area of the gastrointestinal tract. While the large intestine has around 10-100 billion bacteria organisms per teaspoon of fluid, the small intestine only has around 100 thousand organisms. It’s when there’s an overgrowth of bacteria that is prevalent in the small intestine (where there isn’t supposed to be much bacteria) when problems arise.
Typical symptoms of SIBO include:
- Chronic constipation
- Frequent diarrhea
- Abdominal pain
Leaky gut symptoms can also point the finger at SIBO. These symptoms include: fatigue, headaches, skin issues, mood issues asthma and joint pain.
Studies have shown that over 50% of patients diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome actually have Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth. SIBO is a huge blocking factor when it comes to healing. It must be addressed first before further healing can occur. SIBO is a common cause of hormone imbalance.
Other functional lab tests are available. They can be discussed in more detail during our first call and the Results and Recommendation Session.