The road to wellness isn't straight, clear, or predictable. It's a path you forge yourself.

Friday, March 5, 2010

My Visit to the Functional Medicine Practitioner

My saga continues......

So, I followed Dr. Hyman's book, "The Ultramind Solution" like the bible.  I even did his "Ultra Simple Diet" (which is anything but simple!)  Taking the supplements he recommends and following his advice did help me to get off of sugar which is something I've never been able to do before.  However, I still felt rotten!  I kept reading more and more of his books, trying to find answers.  Every week, I thought I had a new issue and would buy corresponding supplements.  (By the way -  do NOT take any of the amino acids he recommends unless a doctor tells you that you need them!  I had self-diagnosed and was taking several different amino acids which threw my levels way off.)  Finally, I decided I needed help from someone who knew what they were doing!

I went to see a Functional Medicine Practitioner.  (I sometimes call her a "holistic doctor" although she's not, because people don't know what a Functional Medicine Practitioner is.)  A Functional Medicine Practitioner is a doctor who looks at how your body is functioning before they prescribe things in order to help the body do its job.  Anyway, I found one in my area by going to the Functional Medicine site.   I'll call her Dr. Cooper.  Dr. Cooper is also a conventionally-trained doctor.  She uses both conventional and alternative medicine  (whichever one she thinks will be more effective for your specific problems, or a combination of both).

The thing I liked most about Dr. Cooper is that she listened!  How many times have we gone to see a doctor and he/she is writing a prescription before you even finish telling them what's wrong?  When you go for a first-time visit with Dr. Cooper however, she schedules 4 hours of time for you.  I had no idea what would take so long, but she was very thorough in her questioning, plus she had her staff do lots of tests.  What a Functional Medical Practitioner does is look at your body, test your blood, etc. to see where there are imbalances BEFORE they prescribe things.

Here's what I found out on my initial visit:
 1.  There is Candida Yeast in my blood.  I saw it!  They put a drop of your blood under the microscope and let you see it too as they explain what you're seeing.  My blood cells were beautiful!  It's really cool to see your own blood cells on a screen.  I even saw a white blood cell doing its thing.  The Dr. said, "Isn't it cute?  It thinks it's still in your body and it's protecting you!"  There were some dark chunks which the cells kept running into and were slowed down by.  I asked "what is this?"  and they told me "that's yeast".  This made me really want to give my cells what they need and to get rid of the yeast which was slowing them down.  Dr. Cooper prescribed "Diflucan" to kill the yeast.
(Note:  The only way yeast can get into your bloodstream is if there's an overgrowth in your digestive tract (we all have some Candida in our gut, but sometimes it can get out of hand).  Runners from the yeast organism can puncture your gut and that's how it gets into your blood.   Most conventional doctors in this country don't even believe in it.  More on this later.)

2.  My body was craving B vitamins.  My levels of both B and D were very low.

3.  My hormones were out of whack.  (Not surprising considering how much estrogen I had to inject into my body when I was doing fertility treatments.)  Dr. Cooper recommended that I use a natural, plant-based Progesterone Cream called "Femarone".  You can get it without a prescription and you just rub it on your belly every day on certain days during your cycle.  (Note:  Do NOT take this or any medication I mention without the advise and supervision of your doctor.  I'm only documenting my own progress here, not telling you what you should take.)

4.  I had high amounts of "bad" bacteria in my gut.  Dr.  Cooper recommended the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, and recommended the book, "Breaking the Vicious Cycle" by Elaine Gottschall.  (From what I understand, Celiacs, Crohn's Disease, and IBS patients benefit from this diet as well.)

5.  I have problems metabolizing sugar.  This is not surprising since Diabetes runs in my family.  I don't have it (and am not even pre-diabetic), but there's an issue there.  Dr. Cooper told me to take "MetaglycemX" twice a day to help my body deal with sugars.

The above things were just what I found out on my first visit.  To find out more in depth what was going on with my body, they took a lot of blood and scheduled me for a stool test and urinalysis.  (Don't worry, I won't go into detail about that!) 

If you have health issues like I did (and do), a Functional Medicine Practitioner may be just what the doctor ordered!

1 comment:

  1. Seeing candida in blood ?.? Some dark spots are shown and you believe it !.completely mid written and non scientific.this word iam seeing in all holistic medicine blogs ,that you have candia in blood.god ,some fake reason has been found to fool patients.