Integrative Health Blog

Genes and Environmental Risks Are the Real Cause of Disease

Posted by on Wed, Oct 16, 2019

A quote from the Gene Environment Interaction Fact Sheet [1] from the Centers for Disease Control states that virtually all human…

“…diseases result from the interaction of genetic susceptibility factors and modifiable environmental factors, broadly defined to include infectious, chemical, physical, nutritional, and behavioral factors. This is perhaps the most important fact in understanding the role of genetics and environment in the development of disease. Many people tend to classify the cause of disease as either genetic or environmental. Indeed, some rare diseases, such as Huntington or Tay Sachs disease, may be the result of a deficiency of a single gene product, but these diseases represent a very small proportion of all human disease. Common diseases, such as diabetes or cancer, are a result of the complex interplay of genetic and environmental factors.”

As a functional medicine  physician, for years I have incorporated genetic testing to help me diagnose the root causes of health problems. I would often find that the CDC  was spot on about the environmental and genetic factors in the development of disease. Once identified, physicians can work to correctly reverse environmental factors such as chronic infections, gastrointestinal disorders and toxicities as well as altering genetic expression which underlie many diseases, disorders and rapid aging.

It is important to remember that genetics may be turned “on” or “off” depending on the environmental factors- genes are modifiable.

The Dominoes of Healthcare

 

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Tags: functional medicine, genetics, Dr. Gant

Genetic Tests: Find Out How YOUR Genes Respond to Drugs and Medication

Posted by on Tue, Jul 30, 2019

Are you taking medications and wondered if they are the right ones for you?

If you have been taking them for a long time, have you been concerned that they might be adversely reacting with each other or taking a toll on your long-term health?  Are the doses too high or too low?

Do you suffer from sleep problems, mood shifts or fatigue and ever wondered if these symptoms are side effects of your medications?

These are good questions that millions of responsible healthcare consumers ask, and now with  genetic testing there is technology that can help you get some answers.

Pharmacogenomics, Genetic Testing for Drug Sensitivities

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Tags: functional medicine, genetics, Dr. Gant

Why Holistic Primary Care?

Posted by on Tue, Jun 25, 2019


How do you choose your primary care doctor?  Referral by friends or picked off an insurance list.  Some young adults may not really care who they see - as long as they get their “annual exam” and have someone write for an antibiotic when they get sick. Others with chronic health conditions visit their doctor to refill their multiple medications which help control their disease symptoms.

But is this enough? Could this interaction between your doctor be far more beneficial in helping you maximize your health instead of just mitigating a disease process?

How much does your doctor really know about you and your true health status?   What can the typical 15-minute visit accomplish in answering your health questions or addressing your ongoing medical concerns? 

Is there an alternative, more comprehensive approach that aims to prevent future health conditions as well as determine the underlying cause(s) of your recurrent problems?

YES! It’s called Functional Medicine and here are 5 reasons why you should schedule this type of visit today.

5 Reasons for Holistic Primary Care with Functional Medicine

  1. Time spent with your doctor.
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Tags: holistic primary care, functional medicine, Dr. Tapscott

Brain Health: The Dirty Dozen for the Brain

Posted by on Thu, Jun 20, 2019

The human brain, our beautifully designed master control center, is under attack from many modern environmental issues. 

Alarmingly, we're seeing increased cognitive impairment from young to old - Autism to Alzheimer's, anxiety, depression, neuro-degenerative diseases (Parkinson's, ALS) brain fog, stroke, memory and neurological issues.  Although some of the increase is due to an aging population, we're seeing brain impairment at all age levels and the incidences are getting worse.  Losing one's cognitive function is an ultimate fear and exploring the issue of prevention is the subject of this article.

Unlike our ancestors, we now must contend with the daily assault of Wi-Fi, chemicals and what I like to call the "Dirty Dozen for the Brain."  Modern technology has improved our lives in a myriad of ways, and we can't live in a bubble. But, to start, let's look at what may be affecting us daily and what we can do to avoid or at least minimize the Dirty Dozen- and keep our brains healthy.

The Dirty Dozen for the Brain

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Tags: functional medicine, brain health, Dr. McClure

Functional Medicine and Genetic Testing for Health

Posted by on Tue, Jun 11, 2019

Functional Medicine is a medical approach which involves testing for the underlying causes of disease and designing a treatment plan to address the root cause of the disorder, not just the symptoms.  It views and treats the body as a whole, integrated system. Many factors can lead to illness, such as lifestyle choices, environmental exposures, and genetic makeup, and all factors should be considered for personalized treatment.

At this moment, your unique genetic makeup and that of the people you love can be predisposing you/them to all types of medical and psychiatric disorders, even before symptoms show up.  Why live in the dark, hoping and praying that health problems are not sneaking up on you?  Now, you can bring the light of inexpensive, often insurance covered, genetic testing into your life and take charge of chronic ailments now, possibly prevent them from happening or put them off for decades. 

As the saying goes, If we don't test, we've guessed.  Isn't health too important to make guesses about? 

Functional Medicine is the Rosetta Stone of Modern Genetics

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Tags: functional medicine, genetics, Dr. Gant

Peptide Therapy for Cellular Repair and Regeneration

Posted by on Fri, May 31, 2019

What is Peptide Therapy?

Peptide therapy is a newly developed medical treatment that has gained new heights in Precision and Functional Medicine for its efficacy, safety and ease of use. These small proteins, or “peptides” are made of a certain sequence of amino acids. Peptides signal the different body organs and tissues to manufacture and release hormones and different substances that are used to induce certain biochemical reactions and changes leading to new cell formation, changes in action or reaction optimizing and augmenting cellular function.

Whether peptide therapy is used  for weight loss, to increase physical agility and fitness, help with digestion processes, neuromuscular function or tissue healing, the advantages are too numerous to talk about in one article.

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Tags: functional medicine, anti-aging, Dr. Hassan, peptide therapy

Why Is it So Hard to Lose Weight?

Posted by on Tue, Apr 23, 2019

The short answer is…..because we assume it is due to excess calories and not enough exercise.

And although these are factors, they are often not THE answer.

It is also not about the total calories but rather, where the calories are coming from.  In other words, what types of foods you are eating.  We can all agree that 200 calories worth of Oreo cookies does not provide the same health benefit as 200 calories worth of broccoli.  In fact, most of today’s current diets have more in common than not.  They are all filled with non-processed, real foods and a variety of colorful fruits and vegetables.  

But what if you are one of those people already on this healthy diet, eating clean and getting in daily activity but still can’t lose weight.  You then have what we call, “resistant weight loss” which is much more complex and best treated through a functional medicine approach as this article will discuss.

Resistant Weight Loss and a Functional Medicine Approach

There are several potential causes of resistant weight loss.

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Tags: weight loss, functional medicine, Dr. Tapscott

The "Perfect Diet" for Everyone

Posted by on Sat, Mar 30, 2019

Two kinds of “perfect diets” exist.  The far more common, propagandized, “perfect” diet is the one-shoe-fits-all diet that bases their recommendations on a small slice of scientific evidence of one kind or another, such as the Fodmap Diet™ or a Paleolithic Diet ™.  The latter uses anthropological evidence about what humans and pre-humans have been eating for the last few million years, which makes some sense.  Such diets become popular based mostly on how well they are marketed and not on their validity.  A far less common “perfect diet” is the one that is congruent with your personalized needs, based on your immunological, allergic, endocrine, toxicological, nutritional, metabolic and genetic uniqueness. Functional medicine focuses on identifying and treating the many unique factors which can contribute to disease or poor health.

In the last year, as we have taken on the challenge of supporting the recoveries of cancer patients, we have mined ever deeper into the science-based, personalized, “perfect diet” that could add years to our patient’s lives and life to their years.  We are up against a healthcare system which has only recently begun to acknowledge, despite amassed studies for decades, that diet and lifestyle does matter in cancer recovery.  Despite a thawing of the healthcare system’s assumptions about lifestyle and diet, mainstream medicine is still far from acknowledging that a unique, “perfect diet” that is congruent with each and every cancer patient’s personalized needs, is extremely important to the recovery of each and every cancer patient.

How to Personalize Your Diet

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Tags: cancer, functional medicine, Dr. Gant

4 Lab Tests to Assess Your TRUE Cardiovascular Risk

Posted by on Wed, Feb 13, 2019

This 3-part series will delve deeper into your true health - starting with your heart health.

Your current blood tests may not be enough to give an accurate picture of your true health- especially when it comes to cardiovascular health and your risks for a cardiac event or chronic disease.

Cardiovascular disease is STILL the leading cause of death in men and women. 

Unfortunately many adults undergo their yearly health exam with labs revealing a “normal” lipid panel.  They leave the office with a false sense of their true risk of having a cardiac event as conventional medical labs fall short of accurately assessing your health.

The basic lipid panel looks at your total cholesterol, triglycerides (fats), and the good and bad cholesterol (HDL and LDL, respectively).  And while this test may be adequate for most of today’s teenagers and young adults, if you are older than 35 or have other risk factors, a more extensive panel is warranted.

Let's look at additional cardiovascular risk factors to get a more complete picture of heart health. 

NMR or Cardio IQ Test

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Tags: heart disease, functional medicine, Dr. Tapscott

Natural Options for Heart Health

Posted by on Thu, Nov 01, 2018

Metabolic Cardiology is a fairly new branch of Functional Medicine. Metabolic cardiology is a non-invasive, simple, integrative medical approach which addresses the prevention, management, treatment and monitoring of cardiovascular disease at the core basic level- which is the heart muscle cell. As a functional medicine physician, I am always concerned with addressing health issues at the root of the problem.

The goal here is to improve and preserve heart health at the cellular level of the individual heart cell through organic interventions that are natural to the human body. Diseased heart muscles are energy-source depleted or lacking the natural cell fuel, known as  adenosine triphosphate (ATP). ATP is formed and recycled on the cellular metabolic level, and supplies all the energy required for every cell, organ, system and body function. ATP is so critical for energy production that it is known as the “energy currency” for life.

There are four supplements that play a major role in supporting a healthy ATP-efficient heart cell:

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Tags: heart disease, functional medicine, supplements, Dr. Hassan