Functional Medicine helps to address the underlying causes of disease, using a systems-oriented approach and engaging both the patient and practitioner. It allows providers to address the person as a whole, not just as an isolated set of symptoms. This is typically achieved via the use of various lab tests to assess nutritional deficiencies, metabolic deficiencies, and toxicities in addition to a proper history and exam.
Why does Nutrition Matter?
Proper nutrition can help decrease inflammation and pain. Basic anti-inflammatory diet principles include eating more vegetables, fruit, healthy proteins, healthy fats, and avoiding processed foods, sugar, and simple carbohydrates. We help equip patients with strategies to eliminate foods that may be causing them harm and educate them on how to replace those foods with healthier options.
We will also recommend nutritional supplementation in order to support a healthy and anti-inflammatory diet. While the main purpose of our nutritional protocols is to lower inflammation, optimize the immune system, and disease management, some patients may also experience weight loss as a result of making dietary changes.
What Symptoms Can Be Assessed?
If you experience one or more of the following symptoms/conditions on a regular basis, you would be likely to benefit from nutrition and functional medicine laboratory testing.
- Arthritis & Joint Pain
- Anxiety & Depression
- Hyperactivity Disorders
- Stomach pain & bloating
- Sleep disturbances
- Irritable Bowel
- Mood Disturbances
Additionally, if you don’t have any of the above symptoms, these tests can help if you are an athlete, weekend warrior and/or just interested in preventative health and seeking to optimize your well-being and sports fitness.
Food Sensitivity & Allergy Testing
Classic skin-scratch testing for allergies only measures IgE-mediated reactions, such as those of a classic allergic reaction (ie lip and tongue swelling when someone is allergic to peanuts).
Food sensitivity testing is different. It is a blood test that includes the measurement of IgG antibody levels to specific foods that can produce symptoms such as those listed under “What Symptoms Can Be Assessed” that can contribute to pain, inflammation, and digestive problems. This antibody food sensitivity test is ideal for patients to help provide insight into food intolerances. We offer a cost-effective test that measures up to 90 food items including gluten, wheat, dairy, beans, meats, egg, sugar, chocolate, certain fish, nuts, fruits, and vegetables. Additional tests are available to assess for spices, molds, environmental and seasonal allergies.
Vitamin, Mineral and Nutritional Testing
Many patients experience chronic illnesses because of nutritional deficiencies. We offer a broad range of vitamin and mineral testing that can help diagnose vitamin, mineral and nutritional deficiencies and imbalances to help improve patient health. These are primarily blood tests that include, but are not limited to: Vitamin D and other fat-soluble vitamin testing, mineral testing, amino acid analysis, and essential fatty acid profiles (omega 3 and 6 testing).
Environmental Toxins Testing
We offer testing that can assess exposure and sensitivity to environmental agents. This includes screening for Bisphenol A (BPA), pesticides, organophosphates, Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs), phthalates, parabens, porphyrins, toxic elements, and volatile solvents.
Assessing exposure to phthalates & parabens can help identify everyday exposures to toxins from the use of items such as personal care products, toys, perfumes, furniture, and plastic food containers. Phthalates and parabens are considered endocrine disruptors and have been associated with conditions such as cancer and infertility. Other examples of endocrine disrupters include BPA and 4-nonylphenol. Chronic exposure to the aforementioned environmental agents may contribute to autoimmune disorders, neurodegenerative conditions and many other symptoms listed in this section.
Gastrointestinal (GI) tests can provide clinicians with information about gut health, which can provide clues regarding whether chronic diseases and symptoms are associated with GI dysfunction. This includes tests such as celiac and gluten sensitivity; the bacterial overgrowth of the small intestine; comprehensive digestive stool analysis with parasitology testing; comprehensive parasitology profile; microbial ecology profile; gut immunology; intestinal permeability assessment; lactose intolerance breath test.
Functional Medicine Testing at GCSP
Schedule an appointment today with Dr. Nicole Brod or Dr. Kamran Chaudhary to discuss Functional Medicine Testing.