What is Functional Nutrition?
Functional Nutrition is a therapy that is able to determine weaknesses and malfunctions in the body. This is done by using a combination of computerized functional assessment questionnaires, analysis of health history, food journals and lifestyle, and sometimes using functional labwork. These tools allow me to really zero in on the root causes of these weaknesses, imbalances and malfunctions. Once all of this data is analyzed, I am able to recommend natural protocols to strengthen weaknesses, remove hidden stressors, rebuild health, and restore function. Once function is restored, the body has an amazing capacity to heal itself. Functional Nutrition helps people to tap into the body’s ability to heal itself. While symptoms definitely will be addressed, what Functional Nutrition is really about is rebuilding health, correcting imbalances and restoring function.
What Functional Nutrition is not?
Functional Nutrition is not a therapy that diagnoses disease, treat diseases, prescribes drugs, and it is not a quick fix. Like I said above, it is all about restoring function, correcting imbalances, and getting to the root cause.
If, for example, someone came to me because they have skin problems, I would not just suggest some nutritional supplements to get rid of the symptoms. I am going to want to figure the root cause and which imbalances are causing these problems which might be a weakness in the digestive system for one person, in another area of the body for someone else, or a nutrient deficiency for someone else.
What is the first session like?
Before we have our first meeting, we will have a free one hour consultation to see if this is a good fit for both of us. We will go through your health history, I will explain everything we will be doing in more detail and will answer any questions you have.
Once we decide to work together, I will have you fill out a few forms before our first meeting:
Functional Assessment Questionnaire
This is a 325 question computerized Functional Assessment which will zero in on exactly which areas of your body are weak and have malfunctions. From this questionnaire, I will generate a graph that shows exactly which areas of your body are strong and which areas are weak and we will go over this at your first session. I will also be able to determine the likely root causes of your symptoms and what foods, macro and micro nutrients, lifestyle changes, and nutritional supplements are needed to bring your body back into balance. I will have you retake this assessment every few months to show your progress.
5 day Food Journal
I will have you submit a five day food journal. I will completely analyze this and make recommendations. This will further help me determine where your imbalances are and what needs to be done.
Personal Health History
This form is a questionnaire about your health history and current lifestyle and will assist me in making recommendations.
This is a standard disclaimer form that most healthcare providers use.
Once I have all of this information, I will be able make recommendations regarding your diet, lifestyle and nutritional supplements during the first session which will last 75-90 minutes. I usually start with dietary and lifestyle changes and nutritional supplements first, and may recommend running some functional labwork down the road if you have stubborn symptoms that don’t improve. For people with severe symptoms, I may recommend running functional labwork right away. Functional labwork is great because it goes to a deeper level in getting to the root of the problem and more clearly identifies what is wrong.
What are the follow up sessions like?
In the follow up sessions, which are typically 60 minutes, we will go over your progress and I will make any necessary adjustments to your protocol and I will answer any questions you are having. Depending on your situation, I may have you keep an on-going food journal and will be making recommendations about that as well. Every few months, I will have you fill out a new Nutritional Assessment Questionnaire so we can track your progress, and we will be going over that in some of the sessions as well. If you reach a point where you feel stuck or overwhelmed and are having a difficult time making the necessary changes, we might schedule one or more Hypnosis sessions to help remove what is blocking you.
How is your work different?
I have training in Nutritional Therapy, Functional Labwork and Hypnotherapy, and have worked in the Alternative Healthcare field for over 12 years. Both the Nutritional Therapy and the Functional Labwork help to get to the root of why you are having health problems, but the Functional Labwork goes to a much deeper level, and can reveal hidden stressors and malfunctions that are often not uncovered in the questionnaires that help to identify the root cause.
Once we know what is wrong and make a plan for you, using Hypnosis can help you more easily make the changes that you need to make. People often have internal resistance and blocks to making healthy changes and many people fail when they try to make changes on their own or in other programs because these blocks are not addressed. Hypnosis really helps to remove these internal blocks so that you can make all of the healthy changes that you need to make.
Do you work on the phone or Skype or only in person?
I have an office in San Francisco and I see clients here as well as on the phone and on Skype.
What problems do you work with?
I specialize in:
Mood Disorders (Anxiety, Depression, Mood Swings, Panic Attacks, and Anger Issues)
Sugar Cravings and Food Addictions
Achieving a Higher Level of Optimal Health and Preventing Illness
Functional Nutrition is also helpful for:
Blood Sugar Problems
Making Vegetarian diets healthier
General unwellness and vague health complaints that you haven’t been able to get an answer to
Problems that you have been told are all in your head (they usually are not)
Male Hormone Problems
How much does it cost?
Before we have our first meeting, we will have a free one hour consultation to see if this is a good fit for both of us. We will go through your health history, I will explain everything we will be doing in more detail, the costs and will answer any questions you have.
Does insurance cover Functional Nutrition?
Insurance typically does not cover nutritional consultations or Functional Labwork but if you have a Flexible Healthcare Spending Account that will usually reimburse you. Some of the labs will take FHSAs directly. Nutritional supplements are typically not covered by either insurance or FHSAs.
What exactly is functional labwork and how is that different from the labwork I get from a Doctor?
Functional labwork is very different from traditional western medicine labwork. The labwork used in Western Medicine typically is looking for disease states and illnesses, and Western Medicine is extremely effective in doing this. Then drugs are typically prescribed to treat these disease states and illnesses, again often very effective. Western medicine typically looks at symptoms and body system in isolation rather than as a whole.
Functional labwork is completely different and looks for imbalances, weaknesses, and subclinical problems which basically are precursors to disease. It also strives to get to the root cause. The main goal of functional nutrition and functional labwork are to correct these imbalances and weaknesses so that diseases and illnesses can be prevented and the body can more easily heal itself. It looks at the body as a whole and how different body systems relate to each other. It is also very complimentary to western medicine and if you have been diagnosed with an illness or disease by a medical doctor, it can usually be used along with standard medical treatment.
What types of labwork do you run?
I have extensive training in Functional Labwork and can run whatever testing is needed to address your imbalances. The main types of Functional Lab work I run are Cortisol and Hormone Testing, Gut Pathogen Stool Screening, Intestinal Permeability, Food Allergy Testing, Micronutrient Testing, Neurotransmitter Testing, Organic Acid Testing and more.
How much does the labwork cost?
The labwork varies from $100 to $350 per test. Retests are usually much less. Some people do not need any testing and others need between 2 and 4 tests. The testing does not need to be done all at once and can often be spaced out a few months apart.
Is the labwork required?
The lab work is not required, but it can often help you to get a better and faster result. Many people respond really well to dietary and lifestyle changes and nutritional supplements and don’t need further testing. Some people will improve in many areas but might have a couple areas that need more work. If you have stubborn imbalances that don’t respond to supplements, diet and lifestyle changes, then I will recommend lab work down the road, just because it is more exact in zeroing in on what is causing your imbalances. Also, if your problems are severe, I may recommend certain lab work right from the beginning.
Can I have my Doctor run the lab work?
This usually isn’t possible as functional labwork is very different from traditional western medicine labwork. The typical Western Medicine model looks for diseases and illnesses and then prescribes pharmaceutical drugs to treat them.
The functional nutrition model is completely different and looks for imbalances and weaknesses and uses natural protocols to correct them with the goal of preventing illness and disease. It also looks at the body as a whole and strives to get to the root cause where Western Medicine usually looks at body systems and symptoms in isolation from the rest of the body.
Different labwork and different labs are used for each model, and medical doctors typically do not run functional labwork as this just isn’t their model of care and doesn’t represent how they think and work. They often do not have accounts at the labs that run functional labwork or the familiarity to interpret them. Both models have a lot of value but are very different.
Who should work with you?
- People who are highly motivated and willing to do the work to make changes to their diet and lifestyle.
- People who are sick of being sick and tired and are committed to doing something about it.
- People who understand that health problems do not occur overnight and that it takes time for the body to get back into balance.
- People who have tried to make changes on their own but need more help and would like to work with an experienced and trained professional that follows a functional and holistic approach.
- People who recognize that while it is very common for many people’s bodies to break down as they age (fatigue, aches and pain, declining memory, weight gain, etc.) this is not normal and it doesn’t have to be that way.
- People who are open minded, free thinking, are open to different ideas, and who understand that much of what we have been told by the mainstream media and authorities just isn’t the truth.
- People who are open to taking nutritional supplements and running functional lab work to help get to the root of their problem when necessary.
Who should not work with you?
- People who are looking for a quick fix.
- People who are not motivated to change their life.
- People who do not want to give up certain foods even if it is clear that they are harmful to them.
- People who are very skeptical and close-minded and are not open to new ideas. Much of the nutritional advice that we have been told by authorities just isn’t correct, and what you’ll be learning here is very different from what we have been taught.