At Tru Health, we believe in treating the cause of an illness rather than simply managing your symptoms. Laboratory tests are an essential part of this process. In addition to physical exams and oral health history, we use the evaluation of laboratory tests to get a full picture of what’s happening to your body.
Are lab tests essential? In many cases, yes. Our naturopathic doctors have the ability to utilize a variety of tests to accurately evaluate your cholesterol levels, cardiovascular health, and hormone balance. These tests can also help us screen for cancer.
When necessary, we have the ability to order a variety of standard imaging tests, including:
- CT scans
- Bone Mineral Density
Additionally, we utilize a variety of specialized laboratory tests to evaluate to provide a comprehensive evaluation. Often these specialized tests are essential to identifying undiagnosed or misdiagnosed health concerns such as food sensitivities, allergies, digestive disorders, micronutrient deficiencies, adrenal function, and the existence of heavy metal.
Specialized Laboratory Tests
Salivary Hormone Testing
Your body uses hormones to communicate internally. When your hormones are imbalanced or not functioning properly, the messages from your brain to your organs and extremities can be incorrectly delivered. This can cause a wide variety of health issues, affecting everything from your ability to digest and metabolize food to your sex drive and mood.
It’s not uncommon for a symptomatic patient’s standard hormone tests to show their hormones are within a normal range. This is because standard blood tests only measure the hormones in their bound state. However, hormones only travel in their bound state. They actually function at the cellular level when they are unbound.
Salivary hormone testing allows us to evaluate your hormone levels at this unbound state, accurately identifying any imbalances.
Your adrenal gland plays an essential role in everything from your immune system performance and digestive system to your cognitive function and energy levels. As naturopathic doctors, adrenal dysfunction is one of the most common health disorders we encounter.
Salivary hormone testing is one of the best ways to identify and treat adrenal dysfunction. Measuring cortisol levels at four distinct times throughout the day, we’re able to pinpoint disruptions to and prescribe therapies to correct them.
When untreated, adrenal dysfunction can cause and/or contribute to:
- Difficulty getting out of bed in the morning
- Fatigue, even after a full night’s rest
- Trouble falling asleep and sleeping through the night
- An intense craving for salt
- Inability to workout
- A low sex drive and poor sexual performance
- Heightened mood swings
- Increased PMS symptoms
- Hampered mental cognitive ability, such as fuzzy thoughts and difficulty remembering details
Food Allergy/Sensitivity Testing
For many patients, their diet is the culprit for their health issues. Traditionally, allergic reactions and sensitives are attributed to external forces like grass, pollen, and dust. But more often than not, the effects of these external forces are heightened by the food you consume.
Food allergies and sensitivities are ultra-personalized. No two patients are alike. Identifying what affects you specifically can be difficult. It often can require time, expertise, and some trial and error.
Partially this is because it’s not uncommon for symptoms to present hours or even days after you’ve eaten a specific food. Additionally, this is because so many trigger foods are consistently present in what’s commonly consumed.
For many patients, wheat, dairy, and eggs are big triggers. While you may be avoiding items like bread, it’s easy to have your diet cross-contaminated with something as simple as soy sauce.
By working closely with you to identify your food allergies and sensitivities, we can create a dietary guideline to boost your overall well-being. (Please see more about our Complete Digestive Analysis program below.)
A healthy diet is essential to your body’s ability to function. But at Tru Health, we know it takes more than just a healthy diet. Your body needs to be able to digest and absorb the nutrients you’re eating.
Even if you are extremely health conscious when it comes to what you put in your body, it’s not uncommon to have vitamin, mineral, antioxidant, and/or other essential micronutrient deficiencies. Micronutrient testing allows us to accurately identify any deficiencies you have.
This insight also plays a vital role in answering questions about any supplements you are currently taking, identify any supplements you may want to introduce to your wellness regime, and recommend any helpful additional treatments, like Drip IVs.
Micronutrient testing is a blood test that measures your body’s ability to absorb vital nutrients. It does so through a comprehensive analysis of your current vitamin, mineral, amino acid and antioxidant levels.
Finding the right combinations of supplements for your optimal well-being can sometimes take time. By identify any current deficiencies, you’re able to limit unnecessary spending, pinpointing a nutrient therapy that will help you start feeling better as quickly as possible.
Heavy Metal Testing
In today’s modern age, it’s often impossible to avoid heavy metals. Some individuals are able to excrete these harmful heavy minerals from their body. However, a large percentage of patients are not. The build up of these toxic metals can lead to chronic conditions that can negatively impact a wide variety of your body’s daily function, including, but not limited to:
- Nervous System
- Cardiovascular System
- Immune System
- Chronic Pain
- Chronic Fatigue
- Food Insensitivities and Allergies
- Gastrointestinal Issues (including diarrhea, constipation, bloating, gas, heartburn, and indigestion)
- Migraines and/or Headaches
- Trouble Seeing
- Mood Swings
- Depression and/or Anxiety
- Unusual Sensation in Your Extremities (including burning, numbness, tingling, or paralysis)
While there’s a tendency to come into contact with heavy metal throughout our daily lives, some activities and locations often heighten this exposure. Among the most dangerous activities are smoking cigarettes, eating contaminated fish, and having a silver filling (mercury amalgams) set. Living near a landfill or in a home with lead-based paint can also put you in harm’s way.
In most cases, testing for heavy metal is done through a urine analysis. Treatments vary, but often include changes to your daily nutrition and exercise regime. We may also recommend a series of Drip IVs and B12 shots to speed up the process.
As essential as nurture is to our overall health, nature is equally as important. The genes we inherited from our parents impact everything from how we look to how our body interacts with our environment. Genomic testing allows us to look at how those genes work specifically.
Genomic testing looks specifically for gene variations called single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), alterations in the chemical composition of your DNA that can play a role in immune system function, cardiovascular health, aging and longevity, and a range of other health matters.
We use this information to help you make dietary and lifestyle changes that promote better overall well-being based on your specific genetic makeup.
What is a Complete Digestive Analysis?
You are what you eat?
At Tru Health Medicine we like to say that you are not only what you eat, but also what you digest and absorb from what you eat. A healthy diet is essential for your quality of life. However, proper digestion and absorption of nutrients (in addition to the proper elimination of waste products) is equally important. Having poor digestion can negatively impact many aspects of your health and result in poor immune function, changes in mood (including depression and anxiety), headaches, joint pain, allergies, inflammation, and fatigue.
At Tru Health Medicine we believe good health starts with good digestion. We offer comprehensive digestive analysis tests that can help identify the causes for your gastrointestinal symptoms. Causes for common gastrointestinal complaints such as reflux, abdominal pain, bloating, indigestion, constipation, and digestion include:
- Food sensitivities
- Parasites (including H pylori)
- Bacterial overgrowth
- Insufficient stomach acid
- Decreased pancreatic function
- Inflammatory bowel disease (Crohn, Ulcerative Colitis)
- Celiac disease and gluten sensitivity