How does Functional Medicine lab testing differ from traditional blood work?
The western medical establishment is disease-oriented, while the functional medical practice is wellness-oriented. When your traditional physician runs standard blood work, they are looking for an already established disease process e.g. hypothyroidism, high cholesterol, cancers, diabetes, polyps, colitis, etc.The trouble with this is that many people might not have an actual disease, though they are still experiencing chronic symptoms already.
Functional medicine lab testing aims to prevent disease before it happens by assessing patterns of imbalance that without intervention will end up yielding chronic disease. It looks between the lines. It assesses patterns of imbalance that can cause troublesome symptoms, but has not become a ‘disease state’ yet. It is ideal, though, that one address these imbalances before they become a disease, for at that point it can become much more difficult to reverse without lifelong medications, surgeries, treatments.
Functional medicine testing can be used to identify:
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Digestive, absorptive, and metabolic dysfunction
- Toxic exposures and ability to detoxify
- Inflammatory responses and triggers
- Imbalances in neurotransmitter metabolites and amino acid precursors
- Hormonal imbalances—adrenal and thyroid functioning
- Disturbances of the gut microbiome
- Genetic susceptibilities such as methylation (MTHFR) and detoxification issues
Here are some of the tests available at CWC
The GI Effects Stool Profile offers a comprehensive look into digestive function. It provides information on the make-up of the gastrointestinal microbial abundance and balance. It includes good, imbalanced and potentially bad or harmful bacteria as well as looking for the presence of yeasts including candida plus it checks for parasites and worms. Additionally, the profile checks fat absorption, protein digestion, pancreatic function, intestinal inflammation, gut immunity and metabolic processes. The GI Effects can also help to provide new information to help differentiate between Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD).
These tests look at many biomarkers, including those for:
- Digestion and absorption levels-this section checks your ability to digest and absorb macronutrients – protein, fats and carbohydrates
- Inflammation levels-This section checks for inflammation in the gut which is associated with IBD – Inflammatory Bowel Disease such as Crohn’s or colitis. It also includes markers that are associated with the health of the gut wall and immune gut function
- Presence of parasites and worms
- The gut microbiome breakdown-This section looks for levels of good, bad and imbalanced bacteria and yeasts.
- Bacteria including h. Pylori, Campylobacter, Clostridium difficile
We usually order this test if your main complaint is GI symptoms. It helps understand what’s going on in the body from a root cause perspective – looking at the gut can give unique insight into overall health.” Stool testing has exploded recently with the growth of research around the gut microbiome and its increasingly understood role in overall health.
A Stool – 1 or 3 day collection with 6 vials or tubes to complete
The lab recommends samples are collected on 3 consecutive days but if this is not possible they should be collected over a week. If this is not possible please do get in touch to discuss options.
The Gastrointestinal Microbial Assay Plus (GI-MAP) is an innovative clinical tool that measures gastrointestinal microbiota DNA from a single stool sample with state of the art, quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) technology.
These tests look at many biomarkers, including those for:
- Digestion and absorption levels
- Inflammation levels
- Presence of parasites and worms
- The gut microbiome breakdown
- Bacterial pathogens, parasitic, viral , Helicobacter Pylori,Normal / Commensal / Beneficial Bacteria
The GI-MAP is designed to assess a patient’s microbiome with particular attention to microbes that cause disease or that disrupt normal microbial balance and contribute to perturbations in the GI flora and contribute to illness. With full PCR quantification, we can now see the level of infection thus, providing accurate, actionable clinical information. The results gleaned from this digestive profile help the clinician to provide personalised, targeted protocols to address gut dysfunction.
1 single stool sample is required for this profile
Type: Dried Urine
The DUTCH Plus (Dried Urine Test for Comprehensive Hormones) is the most comprehensive hormone panel test.
Any women wanting to investigate possible hormonal imbalances or hormone related conditions such as;
- PCOS – poly Cystic ovary syndrome
- Amenorrhea – no periods
- Weight gain
- Low libido
- Premenstrual syndrome
- Mood swings
- Sleep issues
- Mood disorders
- Anovulatory cycle – not ovulating
- Estrogen dominance
- Monitoring hormone replacement therapy
What is being measured
The DUTCH Complete Hormone Profile for Women measure the key female hormones estrogen and progesterone, along with the stress hormones Cortisol and DHEA-S and testosterone plus the breakdown products of the above. covering 35 different hormones.
- Estrogen, progesterone and testosterone – the important sex hormones
- Daily free cortisol including 4 different samples taken over 24 hours providing information about stress patterns throughout the day
- Oxidative stress marker (8OHdG) providing information about free radicals and damage to cells
- Melatonin – the major modulator of circadian rhythms in the body associated with the sleep / wake cycle
- Organic acids including markers for vitamin B12 (methylmalonate), vitamin B6 (xanthurenate), glutathione (pyroglutamate), dopamine (homovanillate), adrenaline (vanilmandelate), and serotonin (5-hydroxy indole acetate). They provide information about metabolism / workings in the body’s pathways.
Urine samples are taken using filter paper making the test suitable for use at home as there is no need for a blood draw or 24-hour total urine collection. You need to collect just four or five dried urine samples over a 24-hour period.
Organic Acids Test (OAT)
The Organic Acids Test (OAT) offers a comprehensive metabolic snapshot of overall health. The OAT test covers intestinal yeast, fungal and bacterial levels, oxalate levels, Neurotransmitter levels, detoxification markers, vitamin requirements and mineral metabolism. Importantly the OAT test also includes mitochondrial markers – associated with the Krebbs cycle and energy production (our ability to turn protein, fat and carbohydrate into energy).
Defects of mitochondrial metabolism are associated with a wide spectrum of illness and disease. This test can reveal metabolic distress that can arise from many causes, including:
- Toxic exposure
- Nutrient deficiency
- Intestinal dysbiosis
- Oxidative stress
- Poor diet
Organic acids are metabolic intermediates produced in the pathways of many metabolic functions. So if a chemical in the body has to get from A to B – there are usually many steps and the organic acids are produced during these steps.
The accumulation of specific organic acids in urine often signals a metabolic inhibition or block. This abnormality may be due to a nutrient deficiency, an inherited enzyme deficit, toxic build-up, or drug effect.
Folate, Vitamin B12 & Methylmalonate
This test measures levels of Folate, Vitamin B12 and Methylmalonate in blood.
- Folic Acid
- Methylmalonic Acid
- Vitamin B12
- Blood Count
- Differential Blood Count
Methylmalonic acid (MMA) is a substance produced in very small amounts and is necessary for human metabolism and energy production. This test measures the level of MMA in blood or sometimes urine.
Vitamin B12 is responsible for two critical enzymatic reactions that promote cell metabolism. B12 promotes the conversion of methylmalonyl CoA (a form of MMA) to succinyl Coenzyme A, and with folic acid, aids in converting homocysteine to methionne.
Blood and/or urine levels of MMA rise when your B12 level begins to decrease. The measurement of elevated amounts of methylmalonic acid in the blood or urine serves as a sensitive and early indicator of vitamin B12 deficiency.
A B12 deficiency can occur when your nutrition intake is poor or you have gastrointestinal malabsorption issues. Over time, vitamin B12 deficiency can cause blood cell changes, leading to anemia and the production of large red blood cells (macrocytes). It can also cause signs and symptoms of neuropathy, such as numbness and tingling in the hands and feet and/or, in advanced cases, mental or behavioral changes such as cognitive impairment, confusion, irritability, and depression. An increased concentration of MMA is often detectable even before B12 levels abnormally decrease, presence of blood cell changes, and/or before full-blown symptoms are apparent, though some people may have some degree of neuropathy.
SIBO Breath Test(Lactulose)
SIBO is fast being recognised as a leading cause of IBS and Digestive symptoms. Our simple home SIBO breath test can confirm if this is adding to your bloating, loose stools, constipation, burping and indigestion.
Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO) occurs when bacteria enter the small intestine, which is normally sterile, and begin to colonize. It can cause a variety of common gastrointestinal symptoms. By measuring the release of hydrogen and methane in the breath, this test evaluates the presence of SIBO.
- Methane (CH4)
- Combined H2 & CH4
12 breath samples collected over 3 hours.
DNA Methylation genes
Genes work together as a team. This is why this test presents your genetic findings in Pathways. You’ll get an instant glimpse into how entire Pathways are impacted by your unique set of genetics. It’s not bad. It’s not good. It’s you. You’re different and now you’ll know why.
What is measured?
- Your Folate Pathway
- Your Methionine Pathway
- Your Methylation Cycle (combined Folate and Methionine Pathways)
- Your Serotonin and Melatonin Pathway
- Your Dopamine, Norepinephrine and Epinephrine Pathway
- Your Biopterin Pathway
- Your Histamine Pathway
IgG Food Sensitivity Panel
The IgG Food Antibody Assessment is a blood test that measures antibodies to 87 commonly consumed foods. The body can react to foods in many different ways. Adverse food reactions can lead to distressing symptoms and chronic health conditions. Often times it is unknown exactly which food(s) may be the cause and testing can help identify the problematic foods. Removal of the reactive foods often results in resolution of symptoms.
Immunoglobulin (IgG) is a type of antibody. Antibodies are major components of the immune system. There are 4 types of IgG. In normal human blood IgG1 is the most prevalent making up 60-70% of the total IgG, followed by IgG2 (20-30%) and IgG3 (5-8%). IgG4 only consists of 1-4% of the food-specific IgG antibodies present.
Hair Mineral Analysis
Hair has the unique ability to concentrate toxic heavy metals and essential minerals making hair analysis a useful screening tool. Unlike blood and urine, hair acts as a storage depot for elements. The growing hair follicle is richly supplied with blood vessels. The blood that bathes the follicle is the transport medium for both essential and potentially toxic elements. These elements are then incorporated into the growing hair protein during keratinisation. In this way, element concentrations in the hair reflect concentrations in other body tissues.
What is being measured
125mg of hair (1 heaping tablespoon)
HOW IT WORKS
Order your online
Choose from our wide range of different functional medicine health tests. You’ll find everything you need to know about your health test on the test page – the type of sample, what exactly is being tested and how long it takes for you to get the results. If you can’t find the test you want or if you have any questions then please do email us at firstname.lastname@example.org as we will be happy to help you choose the right health test for you.
Collect your sample
Collecting your sample is easy. Every kit contains all you need and full instructions to easily collect your samples. Most tests can be done at home – breath, urine, sweat, saliva, hair and stool plus we offer a range of different blood tests – some can be done at home and some require you to have your blood taken. If blood needs to be taken by this is often done at your local GP’s surgery but we have a list of places around the UK that are happy to do this for you.
For details or email us at email@example.com
Post your sample back to the lab
Returning your samples – Once you have collected your samples then please use the envelope included to send your samples back. Please note that some kits have to sent back by guaranteed next day delivery – details about this can be found on the individual test pages and details will also be included in your kit.
Book a consult & get results
Getting your results – We will send your results to you via email or post whichever you request when ordering. The turnaround times for the different health tests can vary from different labs.
When you have received your results you can either book in a follow up appointment with our nutritionist to get the results interpreted £75 for 35 minutes. Or we can send the results directly to you .
Take a Consultation Today
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