The importance of testing before supplementation

In The Health Press clinic we often hear from patients ‘my blood tests came back normal, but i still don’t feel well’

If you can relate to this you’re not alone. Sometimes standard blood testing doesn’t always give us the full picture and all the information we need to identify more subtle changes within the body before a full blown disease is identified. This is where functional testing can be very important, naturopaths can help to identify the root cause of an ailment and start to heal the body before it will turn into a disease. We use the diet, herbal medicine and lifestyle techniques to help the body return to its ideal state. Naturopaths can also help to identify subclinical problems meaning that the body isn’t in a state yet where it requires medication. One of the most valuable tools we have as clinicians is functional testing.

We offer in-house testing for small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO). This refers to a condition in which abnormally large numbers of bacteria are present in the small intestine and the types of bacteria in the small intestine more closely resemble the bacteria of the colon. Unlike the colon (or large bowel), which is rich with bacteria, the small bowel should contain much less bacteria. Likewise, the types of bacteria within the small intestine are different than the types of bacteria within the colon. Ordinarily bacteria are moved out of the small bowel into the large bowel via peristalsis (squeezing action of the gut) prevents movement of bacteria from the colon back into the small intestine. However, disruptions in this can occur (due to diet, sugar, stress, antibiotics, drug use) and inhibit this natural defensive pattern and bacteria begin to accumulate in the small intestine. This is so important to check as SIBO is linked to many conditions including IBS, IBD, skin conditions like eczema, rosacea, psoriasis and it can also cause fatigue.

In terms of more advanced testing we can also do functional testing. This type of testing can include comprehensive gastrointestinal, hormone, allergy, immune and metabolic markers. Functional testing focuses on the physiological function (i.e. how the body functions at a molecular, tissue or organ level). 

Functional tests can be invaluable in identifying the root cause of your health issues, as well as the patient’s unique herbal, diet and lifestyle needs. In practice we find that diagnostic testing enables faster and more successful outcomes. This is because functional testing provides answers that symptoms alone can’t explain. This is because one symptom can be a result of many different ailments within the body.

As a practitioner it is so important to get to the underlying cause of the symptoms. The results from these tests can facilitate the development of more individualised and targeted therapeutic protocols, as well as preventing illness. If we don’t do any testing or functional testing then it may be hard to fully resolve symptoms. Think of these tests as providing a crucial look into behind the scenes of what’s wrong with your body. With this information we can gather a more detailed assessment of the potential root causes and in many cases it can provide  the missing pieces of our patients health puzzle. 

If you believe there is more to discover with your health, we highly recommend commencing Health Coaching with HOM’s Jenny, followed by a consultation with one of our Naturopaths.

MaxxByMakayla is a lifestyle brand that was established in 2015 consisting of holistic skin clinic House of Maxx and internal range MaxxBeautyTonic.

We VALUE being INCLUSIVE of the COMMUNITY we live amongst, creating an EMPOWERING and POSITIVE space to challenge current beauty standards and change the narrative within the beauty industry to be one of INNOVATION and EDUCATION whilst keeping in mind to be as SUSTAINABLE as possible both environmentally and individually.