• Functional Lab Testing at Lemon Water Wellness

    Functional laboratory testing offers the opportunity to dig deeper and truly uncover the root cause of disease. Using functional testing allows us to identify imbalances, deficiencies and underlying physiological patterns for a more targeted and successful treatment approach.

    This type of investigation also allows us to detect disease states before they become a chronic issue and hence allows for prevention of disease.

    In some cases, functional lab testing will provide a more sensitive and accurate form of testing.

    The following are the functional lab tests that we offer:  

    Saliva Hormones

    Saliva hormone testing is very useful for finding underlying hormone excesses and deficiencies but needs to be interpreted with care.

    Urine Steroid Hormones

    The dried urine test provides a comprehensive profile of hormone metabolites in a dried urine sample.

    Measuring both hormone metabolites can give a better overall picture of hormone production for more precise clinical diagnosis of hormonal imbalances (issues with estrogen, progesterone and androgens can be detected using this method).

    There are also some metabolites that are important markers for breast cancer risk that can only be measured in urine. 

    With serum and saliva hormone spot-testing, it's possible to track variations in hormone release throughout the day. In contrast, the standard 24-hour urine collection reflects the total hormone output in a 24-hour period.

    IGG Food Sensitivity Test

    This tool tests for IgG antibody complexes that form against specific foods. IgG antibodies attach themselves to the food antigen and create an antibody-antigen complex. In a healthy system, these complexes are removed by cells called macrophages.  However, if they are present in large numbers and the reactive food is still being consumed, the macrophages can’t eliminate them quickly enough.

    The food antigen-antibody complexes accumulate and are deposited in body tissues. Once in tissue, these complexes release inflammation causing chemicals, which may play a role in numerous diseases and conditions.

    There is a growing body of evidence to support the clinical benefits of eliminating IgG reactive foods from the diet.

    IgG food sensitivities have been implicated in the pathogenesis of migraine headaches, irritable bowel syndrome and eczema. IgG reactions have also been linked to the manifestation of symptoms such as bloating, indigestion, weight gain, inability to lose weight and fatigue.

    Candida Panel

    This test detects IgG antibodies against candida. Candida is a type of yeast normally found in the bowel that requires sugars to grow.

    Elevated IgG antibodies to Candida are often found when there is an opportunistic yeast overgrowth. Consuming too many sugar-rich foods and an imbalanced gut microbiome can contribute to overgrowth of Candida.  Symptoms associated with Candida overgrowth include:

    • clouded thinking
    • depression
    • diarrhea
    • fatigue
    • menstrual pain
    • vaginal yeast infections
    • headaches

    Hair Element Analysis

    Hair element analysis shows nutrient status (essential elements) and toxic element exposure for the length of time it took to grow the hair supplied for testing (usually about three months).

    Essential elements are essential because they are needed to maintain health.  For example, potassium and sodium are essential for proper heart function, while calcium and magnesium are essential for bone development and strength.

    Toxic elements usually cause damage by taking the place of essential elements and interfering with their usual function.  For example, calcium helps strengthen bone, but lead can take the place of calcium in bone, making bone less strong.

    Heavy metal exposure and toxicity can be measured through this non-invasive test.

    Heavy metal toxicity has been linked to the following symptoms:

    • Alopecia
    • Depression
    • Fatigue
    • Malabsorption
    • Hypertension
    • Impaired Glucose Tolerance
    • Kidney Function
    • Parkinson's-like Symptoms
    • Sexual Impotence or Decreased Testosterone Production
    • Vision Problems
    • neurological problems
    • memory impairment
    • learning difficulties
    • gastrointestinal problems

    Urine Element Analysis

    Urine element analysis is another simple and inexpensive way to measure levels of essential and heavy metal toxic elements.

    Fatty Acid Profile

    The Fatty Acid Profile measures the percentage of fatty acids in red blood cells from a dried blood spot. Measurements include the Omega-3 Index and Omega-3 score to assess for heart disease risk, the ratio of Arachidonic Acid (AA) to Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) as a marker of inflammation, total Omega-3 fatty acids, total Omega-6 fatty acids along with mono-unsaturated fatty acids, trans fatty acids and saturated fats.  Measurement of fatty acid content in red blood cell membranes shows less biological variability than measurement in plasma or serum.

    Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth Testing (SIBO)

    SIBO is a common clinical condition and can develop in a variety of patient populations.

    SIBO Profiles are non-invasive breath tests which capture exhaled hydrogen (H2) and methane (CH4) gases following patient ingestion of a lactulose solution to evaluate bacterial overgrowth of the small intestine. Symptoms of SIBO are non-specific, including abdominal pain/distention, diarrhea, and flatulence.

    Conditions commonly associated with SIBO include:

    • IBS
    • IBD
    • Celiac Disease
    • Diabetes
    • Fibromyalgia
    • Rosacea
    • Parkinson's Disease
    • Obesity

    Risk factors for development of SIBO include structural issues, motility disorders, organ system dysfunction, elderly age and various medications (recurrent antibiotics, PPIs) that alter the gut microflora populations.

    Organic Acids Test (OAT)

    Organic acids are metabolic intermediates that are produced in pathways of energy production, detoxification, neurotransmitter breakdown, or intestinal microbial activity. Accumulation of specific organic acids detected in urine indicates a metabolic inhibition or block.

    The metabolic block may be due to a nutrient deficiency, an inherited enzyme deficit, toxic build-up or drug effect. Additionally, several of the biomarkers in this test are markers of intestinal bacterial or yeast overgrowth.

    The organic acids nutritional test is valuable for determining:

    • Functional vitamin and mineral status
    • Amino acid insufficiencies like carnitine and NAC
    • Oxidative damage and antioxidant need
    • Phase I & Phase II detoxification capacity
    • Functional B-complex vitamin need
    • Neurotransmitter metabolites
    • Mitochondrial energy production
    • Methylation sufficiency
    • Lipoic acid and CoQ10 status
    • Bacterial and yeast overgrowth

    Please speak with your Naturopathic Doctor to get more details about functional lab testing and to understand which tests might be valuable in your case.

    The information about the specific tests mentioned above has been referenced from our test providers:

    http://rmalab.com/healthcare-professionals/our-tests

    https://www.gdx.net/product/organix-comprehensive-profile-metabolic-function-test-urine

    https://dutchtest.com/resource/oats-information-sheet/

    http://rmalab.com/our-tests/hormone-testing

    https://www.doctorsdata.com/hair-elements/

  • Weight Loss Made Easy

     By Dr. Selene Wilkinson, ND

    Weight loss is something that a lot of people struggle with, but the good news is they don’t have to. For many people there are multiple obstacles to losing the desired amount of weight far beyond the standard of eating less and exercising more. Some of these items include a diet that is not individualized and appropriate for them, a hormone imbalance leading to weight gain, nutrient deficiencies causing uncontrollable cravings and/or a body overloaded with toxins creating them to have a slower metabolism. I see patients daily that fall into one or all of these categories, Debbie was one of them.

     Background

    Debbie is a 44 year old mother of 3 who works full time and was going through a very stressful divorce. She came to see me as she had struggled with her weight all of her life. She had been on every diet from A to Z starting with Atkins, and moving on to Bernstein’s and so on. Most diets failed and the diets that did work, only kept the weight off for a short period of time.

    When she came to see me she was in a very depressed and frustrated state, as not only was she eating an extremely unhealthy diet, she had lost all of her self confidence because of her weight gain and the divorce that she was going through. During her initial visit I learned about when and what she ate, the uncontrollable cravings she had, as well as what her emotional and psychological triggers to eat more food were. This helped me grasp a full picture of Debbie and understand her relationship with food. Luckily she did exercise 4 times weekly, but this only added to her frustration as she was not seeing the results she was looking to achieve.

    I had a variety of hormone, nutrient and toxin levels tested in her blood as I was investigating if there were any hormone imbalances, nutrient deficiencies or a toxic overload in her body. I also tested what foods Debbie was sensitive to. Debbie did not know her blood type so we had this tested as well. I performed a physical exam to provide additional information regarding Debbie’s case and took her measurements (weight, hip and waist circumference) to have baseline numbers to monitor her progress.

    Treatment

    After receiving her blood work results it was clear that some of her hormones, including her thyroid was working at a slower rate than should be for optimum weight loss. It was also clear that her stress hormone cortisol was extremely high, also making it very difficult to lose weight, especially around her midsection. I suggested a few choice herbs and supplements to treat and balance these hormones. Her mercury levels came back slightly elevated, potentially from environmental exposure or the large quantities of seafood that she consumed. The food sensitivity test showed that she was sensitive to gluten, eggs, beans and almonds. I created a diet plan that increased her metabolic rate and removed all foods she was sensitive to, in addition to those foods high in mercury. Using Chinese Medicine and acupuncture I was able to decrease her stress levels and clear toxins from her organs so that they could function at their optimum. I had Debbie come in every 2 weeks to be measured and to make sure she was on track both physically and mentally.

    Outcome

    In two months Debbie had reached her desired goal of losing 20lbs, and that was 10 months ago. We retested her blood, which came back normal. Debbie still comes in to see me for acute situations such as muscle pain from working out or the odd cold, but she is not the same overweight and depressed women that came into my office 10 months ago. She is confident and continues to keep her weight off and is living a full and happy life.

    This is one of many patients that I see in my office who have struggled to lose weight their entire lives, but given the right direction and tools now understand how weight loss can be made easy, and it can be permanent.

     

     

     

     

     

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