Functional medicine uses an approach to health using scientifically validated laboratory testing that focuses on uncovering the underlying causes of disease. Dr. Kristen Biggs and her team will develop treatment protocols based on the latest research.
Why Functional Medicine Laboratory Testing?
Functional medicine is a personalized approach to treatment that deals with primary prevention and the underlying causes of disease instead of just addressing the symptoms of chronic illness. Evaluating organ and systems functions rather than looking for a specific condition is a fundamental principle of functional medicine. Functional medicine lab tests check your nutritional status, digestive function, allergies, detoxification ability and much more.
What Are Some of the Laboratory Tests We Offer?
We offer laboratory tests including food antibody testing, nutritional testing, antioxidant and vitamin level testing, gut microbiome testing, and some limited genetic testing for Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs).
Food Antibody Testing
Food antibody testing measures the level of IgG antibodies specific to 30-200 foods that may cause reactions. IgG antibodies signify “non-allergic” or “delayed” food reactions that may worsen or contribute to some health conditions. It may also indicate digestive issues including leaky gut syndrome.
Many people have food intolerances without being aware of the fact. The most common ones are dairy products and eggs, but there are also some unexpected intolerances to foods such as garlic, bananas, and cranberries. Foods that you may think are healthy, may not be healthy for you. One way to find out about your food sensitivities is by doing an elimination and challenge test, which involves following a restricted diet for 21 days, then reintroducing foods one at a time to identify what triggers symptoms.
Another option a finger-stick test, which assesses intolerance to 96 different foods. The IgG reactions that these laboratory tests look for are usually subtle and may cause general fatigue and malaise, to skin breakouts or headaches. Avoiding foods that cause sensitivities will allow you to enjoy a higher level of health.
Have you ever thought about getting in-depth information and assessment of your nutritional status, your immune responses to food, or finding out about your digestive health? If so, nutritional testing will answer some of your questions and will help you determine the optimal nutrition for you without playing any guessing games.
First of all, you will undergo an in-depth health consultation. Dr. Biggs will evaluate your health history, any current symptoms, your desired goals, and your metabolic makeup, including your body composition and metabolic analysis. Nutritional testing is not for the diagnosis or treatment of any diseases, but instead, aims at assessing the function of your systems. The information you will learn will help you make healthier food and supplement choices.
Antioxidant and Vitamin Level Testing
Your body needs the correct balance of essential nutrients including vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and antioxidants to achieve and maintain its optimal health. Your body’s needs are unique, and nutritional deficiencies can contribute to disease development and progression. A micronutrient test is a blood test that can determine how your nutrients are working to maintain optimal cellular function necessary for your immune system and overall health.
Nutritional deficiencies can occur for many different reasons. You may not be consuming adequate quantities of the essential nutrients, or your digestive tract may not be absorbing the nutrients adequately, as is typical with leaky gut patients. Sometimes inhibitors within your cells do not allow for proper use of your nutrients, or your nutrients may not be transported to your cells efficiently. You may have insufficient cofactors or enzymes needed to utilize your nutrients properly.
Testing rather than guessing helps Dr. Biggs evaluate your unique nutrient profile and provides a scientific basis for recommending supplements, dietary changes, or lifestyle modifications. It also allows for targeted treatment of your specific requirements to restore your optimal health and function.
Gut Microbiome Testing
Dr. Biggs and her team can learn so much from stool testing to address any symptoms and help boost your overall health. Gut microbiome testing is not used only to evaluate gastrointestinal symptoms, but also to provide insight into the sources of any ongoing inflammation which may affect everything in your body. In other words, “silent” gut dysfunction can manifest into a host of conditions such as depression, anxiety, autoimmune diseases, joint or back pain, eczema, psoriasis, allergies, as well as the primary symptoms such as bloating, cramping, constipation, or diarrhea.
Gut microbiome testing evaluates the bacteria that live in your microbiome, or gut, that influence your health in both good and not so good ways. Understanding the composition of your gut bacteria will help identify if dysbiosis, or imbalance of gut bacteria, is present, allowing Dr. Biggs to supplement your diet with probiotics or food supplements based on your condition.
Limited Genetic Testing for Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs)
Single nucleotide polymorphisms, or SNPs, are the most common type of genetic variations among people. Each SNP depicts a variation in a single DNA building block, called a nucleotide. There are about 10 million SNPs present in the human genome. SNPs can act as biological markers, enabling scientists to locate genes associated with a disease.
The presence or absence of an undesirable gene or gene SNP does not necessarily mean you will or will not manifest a specific problem. Knowing what you are at risk for from a genetic standpoint allows Dr. Biggs to design a plan to lower your risk factors by influencing your genes in a healthy way, namely epigenetics.
Functional medicine laboratory testing searches between the lines. It assesses patterns of imbalance that may cause you to experience troublesome symptoms but has not become a ‘disease state’ as of yet. Dr. Biggs will diagnose and help you address these imbalances before you develop a disease.
Contact us today at Santa Fe Vein and Med Spa to learn more about our functional medicine laboratory and how to enhance your health and wellness. Dr. Kristen Biggs along with our highly trained staff are committed to your health and wellness, and offer you services second to none! Begin your journey to a healthier you today!.