Sunday FUNday: Why do functional medicine testing?

This article by Dr Sarah will have you discovering  why functional medicine testing can make a huge impact on your health. Simply discovering the genes that make up your body can be the link to optimal wellness. 

One of the problems with modern day medicine is that treatment is tailored to a symptom and everyone with that symptom gets the same treatment protocol. The result is a health care system that spends the most in the world with some of the saddest statistics of efficacy. Although our life expectancy is lengthened by fancy machines that keep us breathing or pump our hearts, our quality of health is not one of vitality.

The problem with symptom-based disease control  is that everyone has a different biological makeup, including their ability to excrete and metabolize certain medications and chemicals. Bear in mind, that the body sees any foreign substance as a chemical; therefore, drugs and intoxicants in the environment are removed in the same manner.

Genetic differences in enzyme detoxification pathways, including methylation and sulfation pathways, can cause some individuals to be more susceptible to environmental exposures than others. For example, someone who has a a genetic mutation may have imbalances in clearance and a retention in toxins. This is actually quite common in the general population and their lucky owners are usually diagnosed with “psychosomatic illnesses.” The good news is that, with the new science of nutrigenomics, various nutrients in therapeutic doses can help to remedy the body’s slow detoxification capacity. Knowledge of these and other key pathways unite the art and science of a skilled functional medicine practitioner in their decision on when and how to use functional medicine testing.

Conventional medicine has acknowledged this link between genetics and treatment for some time. It is known that various medications should be tested for individual genetic variations that cause the drug to be ineffective or toxic. The following example from PLoS Genetics explains these genetic mutations and the drug, Warfarin. The anticoagulant drug, Warfarin, is widely prescribed for reducing the risk of stroke, thrombosis, pulmonary embolism, and coronary malfunction. However, Caucasians vary widely (20-fold) in the dose needed for therapeutic anticoagulation, and hence prescribed doses may be too low (risking serious illness) or too high (risking severe bleeding). Because each body varies in its metabolism of this drug, it is nearly impossible to get the exact dosage an individual would need to receive a positive therapeutic effect from the pharmaceutical drug.

Are you ready to make a change to get healthy? Are you ready to start a personalized treatment plan that works without the use of pharmaceutical drugs? To learn more about our functional medicine program or to schedule an appointment, please call (304) 263-4927 today. Dr. Terry Chambers is a Board certified chiropractor and acupuncturist, licensed in WV, and trained to perform functional medicine.





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