WE THINK ABOUT YOUR HEALTH DIFFERENTLY.
The current system of medical care isn't working very well. Instead of merely reacting to disease, we take a comprehensive approach to identify root causes and bring your body to optimal function. Below is a partial list of conditions we treat. Click on the condition to view more.
Adrenal fatigue is most commonly associated with prolonged or intense periods of stress. Measuring 24 h levels of cortisol and DHEA can help when customizing therapeutic treatments. Cortisol imbalances can alter: mood, sleep patterns, memory, weight loss resistance or weight gain, thyroid function, immune response, energy levels, intestinal function, and cholesterol levels. Adrenal fatigue is a very common cause of fatigue and a host of other symptoms often never checked by conventional approaches.
ANXIETY / DEPRESSION
It is far too common for people to be prescribed side effect riddled anti-depressant medications for anxiety and depression. These conditions can be crippling for some, but finding the underlying cause is seldom sought after. Anxiety and depression can come from a lack of certain amino acids, which are the building blocks of your neurotransmitters that promote mental balance. It’s also important to look at the gut. There is a ‘gut-brain’ connection that can influence mental health, especially when 70-80% of serotonin is made in the GI tract. It is also important to look for elevated or depressed cortisol levels, as cortisol has a direct link to serotonin production and function. Food sensitivities can also be a cause of anxiety and depression. Genetics play an important role as well. With an analysis of your genes, you can take certain nutrients to support healthy neurotransmitter function and metabolism.
The modern day athlete no longer follows the narrow, traditional models of training in a single mode of exercise, endurance or resistance, and focusing solely on macronutrients of fats, carbohydrates, and proteins. Today's athlete is now training with an integrative approach combining different types of training, the timing of consuming meals and micronutrients, different dietary approaches to muscle building and fat loss, and several modalities to enhance and speed up muscle recovery.
Because demands are high on cellular activity in the athlete, it is vitally important to check and monitor nutritional levels, oxidative stress markers, hormonal markers, antioxidants, as well as amino acid and fatty acid levels to ensure optimal performance. Also important is educating the athlete on when and how to train to achieve optimal results and avoid overtraining syndrome.
New science is showing powerful ways to manipulate the biochemistry and physiology of the body using the above techniques to create a more dynamic and powerful athlete.
When the immune system goes awry it can get confused and accidentally attack the body's own tissue resulting in diseases such as Hashimoto's thyroiditis, Crohn's disease, Lupus, Ulcerative Colitis, Multiple Sclerosis, Celiac disease, and Rheumatoid arthritis. An in-depth look at what the possible triggers could be (food sensitivities, chronic viral infections, toxins), gut health, and balancing the immune system are the functional medicine approach to treatment.
The process of aging involves not only changes to the body, but changes to the brain as well. It seems today that too much emphasis is put on our body health, and not enough on our brain health. When in fact, it is the health of our brain that will sustain us through the aging process. Its function never changes. The brain helps you operate through life, make decisions, remember, learn, laugh, concentrate, problem solve, and manage the thousands of bits of information thrown at it each minute. Luckily, the brain has 'plasticity', or the ability for the brain to rewire itself and redirect neuronal pathways and kinds of neurotransmitters released to help preserve its healthy function. It is important to understand the threats to brain health and learn lifestyle changes that you can start now to improve and protect your brain in the future.
Measuring nutrient levels, oxidative stress markers, toxins, amino acids, and levels of antioxidants in the body can provide significant indicators about your future brain health. Lifestyle modification of sleep, exercise, clean eating, meditation, de-stressing techniques, and detoxification are potent ways to protect the vitality of the brain in the future.
Nearly 50% of people who have a heart attack have normal cholesterol levels, and nearly 50% of people with very elevated cholesterol have no evidence of heart disease. Most doctors only check basic cholesterol numbers and ignore the real risk factors for heart disease; cholesterol particle sizes, inflammation markers, insulin resistance, endothelial function, stress levels, diet, and genetics. Cardiovascular disease is a complex interplay between many body systems, lifestyle, and diet.
The human body is bombarded with toxic chemicals and heavy metals on a daily basis and this fact is becoming one of the biggest health concerns of our time. Sadly, babies are being born with nearly 300 toxic chemicals in their bodies from the toxic burden of the mother. Our body’s ability to detoxify is overwhelmed and toxins accumulate in the tissues of our body resulting in severe neurodegenerative diseases, cellular poisoning resulting in fatigue and cancer, infertility, cardiac, liver, and immune system dysfunction, hormonal imbalances, and mental health disease. Reducing exposure to toxins and optimizing the detoxification pathways and systems is imperative to allow the body a chance to cleanse and repair itself. This involves many lifestyle changes, including the water you drink, what you cook and clean with, where your food is sourced, vaccinations you receive, and removing dental amalgam fillings.
Fatigue is one of the most common complaints with its cause being one of the most elusive. Many people eat right, get plenty of sleep, try to exercise, yet still feel fatigue despite doing everything right they know how to. Conventional medicine just doesn’t seem to have the answer for this common chronic issue. Important hidden causes of fatigue involve chronic infections, adrenal dysfunction, mitochondrial dysfunction, nutritional depletions, methylation defects, hormonal imbalances, food sensitivities, toxins and heavy metal toxicity, and poor gut function. The inside out approach can often uncover one or more reasons causing your fatigue.
Finding hidden food sensitivities by measuring IgG food antibodies can help uncover causes of an extensive list of symptoms. In some cases, symptoms may not show up until several days after the offending food has been eaten. Food sensitivities are associated with: Autism, Arthritis, autoimmune conditions, inflammation, intestinal disorders, hormonal health, skin rashes, and weight gain.
The ancient Greek physician Hippocrates once said, “All disease begins in the gut.” It turns out Hippocrates was right. The medical world is now discovering just how powerful the gut's influence is on our health. A look into your gut will reveal how well you are digesting and absorbing your nutrients, the balance of 'good' bacteria, inflammation, and if you have any bacterial, yeast, or parasitic infections. We are discovering that the GI tract is intimately involved in immune system health and can affect your body weight by influencing your food cravings and metabolism. The gut is often referred to as “the second brain" because of the 500 million neurons that make up your enteric nervous system (ENS) and the production of 30 different neurotransmitters like serotonin, which help to regulate your mood. Research is also discovering the connection between gut bacteria and skin conditions such as acne, psoriasis, and eczema.
When it comes to certain disease onset the saying is, 'your genes load the gun, but your environment and lifestyle pull the trigger.' In other words, your genes do not determine your fate, or the expression of a certain disease, but your environment and how you live your life will influence the turning 'on' and 'off' of your genes. It is important to know what genes you have in order to take more caution in certain areas of your life and environment. Key areas of genetic information to keep track of: cardiovascular health, methylation, detoxification, and oxidative protection.
HEAVY METAL DETOXIFICATION
Heavy metals such as mercury, lead, cadmium, arsenic, and others are often overlooked as the cause of many serious disease processes and symptoms. Heavy metals can cause disruption of hormone balance, brain function, blood pressure, severe fatigue, unusual neurological symptoms, infertility, GI disturbance, headaches, and mood disorders. Blood tests only show acute exposure and do not show the true toxic load stored in body tissues. A urine heavy metal challenge is necessary to truly assess body burden. Removing heavy metals can be safely done through a process called chelation using oral medication and nutrient support.
Like women and menopause, men also go through a hormonal decline as they age called Andropause or 'manopause.' This hormonal decline is a gradual loss of the masculinizing hormone, testosterone. This can leave men feeling irritable, depressed, lacking in confidence, diminished libido, ineffective workouts, weight gain, loss of muscle mass, less firm erections, and weak orgasms. Low testosterone can be due to aging, but other causes must be investigated such as excessive stress, chronic infections, certain medications, and being overweight among other causes. Low testosterone can be found in men under 40 as well, and causes can include low zinc levels, prior head injury, and toxic overload. Testosterone plays an important role in the cardiovascular health of men, bone strength, mental and physical performance, and may help in the prevention of prostate cancer.
MEDICAL WEIGHT LOSS
There is no lack of ‘quick tips’ for weight loss out there. Being overweight and weight loss resistant is a complex problem that requires an in-depth look at lifestyle, sleep, dietary and exercise patterns, sex hormone levels, insulin levels, cortisol levels, thyroid function, and nutritional status. If you are eating right and exercising and the weight is not coming off, then a look into the above can provide the reason why. Balancing hormones, adjusting when and what you eat, and timing of exercise can play a big role in weight loss.
Metabolic testing uses more than 100 blood and urinary markers to assess the central areas of the body’s metabolism. It will assess your nutritional status by measuring key vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients, as well as other cofactors essential for the body’s optimal performance. Cellular and mitochondrial energy metabolites are measured to reflect how well the Krebs cycle is functioning. This cycle reflects how well carbohydrates, fats, and proteins are being converted into energy production. Imbalances of cellular energy metabolism are seen in chronic fatigue, early aging, poor athletic performance, sleep issues, and poor mental performance.
A look into neurotransmitter balance is also seen to reveal possible causes of poor sleep, anxiety, depression, poor concentration, and attention deficit disorders.
Levels of essential fatty acids (EFAs) like omega 3,6,7,9, and trans fats are measured to assess cell membrane structure and function. They also indicate levels of inflammation and provide clues to the function of the cardiovascular, neurological, hormonal, mental, and dermatologic system.
Oxidative stress biomarkers are measured to show the body’s current state of oxidation and levels of important antioxidants. Oxidation is a natural process inside the body. The same process causes metal to rust and turns an apple brown after it has been cut open. This ‘rusting’ occurs within the body and can damage cell membranes and DNA leading to cancer, aging, cardiovascular, and neurodegenerative diseases. It is the job of antioxidants to quench this oxidation to prevent physiologic decline.
When a woman in her 40s starts to have night sweats, hot flashes, irregular heavy periods, and mood changes, then she is likely entering perimenopause. Hormonal shifts in estrogen and progesterone, which can last month to years, are the culprit to symptoms such as: hot flashes, night sweat, irregular bleeding patterns and flow amounts, moody, irritable, memory loss, sleep problems, anxiety, fatigue, and weight gain. Once one year has passed without a menstrual cycle, then she has entered menopause. Many of the same symptoms can persist with the addition of loss of libido, vaginal dryness, painful intercourse, hair loss, weakened bones, urinary problems, and more abdominal weight gain. Fortunately, many of these symptoms can be alleviated with the use of bio-identical hormone therapy, or BHRT. BHRT is the use of natural compounds that are the exact chemical structural match as your own hormones, not synthetic harmful drugs. The use of BHRT does not come with the risks that synthetic hormones do: increased risk of certain cancers, blood clotting, stroke, heart attack, and dementia. In fact, recent studies demonstrate that BHRT may even decrease the risk of heart disease and breast cancer, and it shows heart, brain, and bone protection as well.
PHARMACEUTICAL GRADE SUPPLEMENTS
Nutraceuticals are an important part of your healing process. Nutraceuticals are supplements that are pharmaceutical grade in quality. Supplements sold over the counter too often do not contain what the label says, and often times can contain ingredients that can be harmful to your health. All supplements used in your health healing process are manufactured with the utmost quality and purity.
SLEEP / INSOMNIA
Not only does a poor night’s sleep set you up for a rough next day, but it is also associated with heart disease, weight gain, high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes, low libido, depression, rapid aging, poor memory, and reduced concentration. Sleeping pills just mask the underlying condition and can become habit forming and make the brain resistant to their effects. A look into one’s pre-sleep routines, cortisol levels, neurotransmitters, food sensitivities, melatonin levels, amino acids, nutrient levels, and sex hormones can provide an answer to your problem. Sleep is a must. It is during sleep that the body detoxifies, grows, repairs, and regenerates itself.
The thyroid gland produces hormones that affect the function of every organ system in our body. In fact, every cell in our body has thyroid receptors to help regulate the cell's metabolic rate and energy function. It also influences the body's temperature, appetite, growth, muscle strength, appetite, and the health of your heart, brain, nervous system, cholesterol levels, and reproductive system. Signs you may have an underactive thyroid are fatigue, feeling cold, constipation, weight gain, weight loss resistance, heavy periods, changes in hair and nail texture, puffy face, brain fog, depression, and poor memory.