Functional testing is a very efficient way to find out more about nutritional, hormonal or gastro-intestinal imbalances.
We will first do a full diet and lifestyle analysis and will recommend an adapted Nutrition and Lifestyle plan for you to follow for 4-6 weeks.
If symptoms have not decreased in this time then testing is a good way to get to the cause of the health issue through testing.
See below for a few examples of tests that I have worked with.
Food Intolerance testing
Finding out about a food insensitivity can be done through detecting IgG antibodies through the activation of C3d. The reliability and efficacy through this mechanism has increased considerably. This is a finger prick test and can be done from home. The results of the dried blood test can indicate for a variety of symptoms relating to areas such as skin, digestion, energy, respiration, seasonal allergies, musculoskeletal health and psychological wellbeing.
DUTCH Complete - CAR (Cortisol Awakening Response) Test
This combined panel, which includes the DUTCH Complete and the DUTCH CAR (Cortisol Awakening Response), can help identify the root causes of hormone imbalances in men and women. The test analyses 35 different hormones; oestrogen, progesterone, testosterone, DHEA-S and cortisol along with their metabolites. It also measures daily free cortisol, the oxidative stress marker 8OHdG, melatonin, six organic acids and the CAR, which is an excellent snapshot of HPA axis function. A low CAR can be a result of an underactive HPA axis, psychological burnout, seasonal affective disorder (SAD), sleep issues, PTSD, chronic fatigue, chronic pain, hypertension, gastrointestinal issues, post-natal depression and autoimmune disease. An elevated CAR can be the result of an overactive HPA axis, anticipatory stress, glycaemic dysregulation, pain and depression. The DUTCH Complete and DUTCH CAR are both available as stand-alone tests.
The Adrenal Function Panel is a simple saliva test to help detect any imbalances or dysfunction of the adrenal glands. This typically manifests as a reduced output or alteration in the diurnal pattern of adrenal secretions including cortisol and DHEA. Symptoms that would indicate ordering this profile include fatigue, nervousness, weakness, sugar cravings, insomnia, dizzy spells, headaches, decreased stamina, irritability, fibromyalgia, chronic inflammation, hormones imbalances, infections, sleep disruptions, anxiety and depression.
Organic Acid Test - OAT
This test evaluates yeast and bacterial overgrowth, vitamin and antioxidant levels, fatty acid metabolism, neurotransmitter levels, oxalates, mitochondrial function, oxidative stress, detoxification and much more. Organic acids are the by-products of human cellular activity, the digestion of foods and the metabolism of gastrointestinal flora. They are analysed in urine rather than blood serum because they are not extensively reabsorbed in the kidney tubules after glomerular filtration. Subsequent dietary and supplemental interventions following an OAT assessment have led to a number of reported improvements by patients and practitioners including reduced fatigue, improved energy, better concentration and decreased gastrointestinal symptoms. For this reason, organic acid testing is strongly recommended as an initial clinical screening tool.
The OAT is strongly recommended as the initial screening test.
This vitamin is mainly known to be needed for Immunity and Bone health. Low levels of Vitamin D can also effect mood and is prevalent in patient with auto-immune disorders like MS, psoriasis and rheumatoid arthritis.
This is a simple fingerpick test and can be done at home.
Microbiome - stool testing
This tests Gastro-Intestinal health through 5 different areas: Maldigestion, Inflammation, Dysbiosis, Metabolite Imbalance and Infection. Assessment of short chain fatty acids reflects the overall gut health and microbiome balance. It can also identify the causes of gastrointestinal symptoms, autoimmune disease, joint pain, IBD, IBS, inflammation, food sensitivities, nutritional deficiencies and skin conditions.
The result of this test will enable us to recommend a targeted Nutrition and Lifestyle plan with additional supplements if needed.
Basic Thyroid Testing
The Thyroid Basic Profile analyses serum levels of TSH, Free T3, Free T4, Total T4, Total T3, Thyroid Peroxidase Antibodies (TPO) and Thyroglobulin Antibodies (TGA). Thyroid imbalances are complex and wide-ranging, so this profile is indicated for symptoms including fatigue, constipation, depression, anxiety, headaches, skin issues, hormone imbalances, weight gain, fluid retention, reduced libido, skin problems, poor concentration, sensitivity to the cold and musculoskeletal pains.
SIBO Lactulose testing
SIBO is characterised by an increase in the number, or a change in, the type of bacteria found in the small intestine. The detection of hydrogen and methane in the breath after ingesting a substrate (lactulose) can help determine if SIBO is the cause of gastrointestinal symptoms such as diarrhoea, constipation, bloating, cramping, nausea, reflux, flatulence and belching. Such symptoms, often non-specific and indistinguishable from those seen in irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and other functional digestive disorders, can be the result of bacterial fermentation of short chain carbohydrates in the small intestine. This test is a non-invasive breath test.