First and foremost, I recommend and use the best testing labs in the world for my client's - guessing doesn’t work.
I’m amazed how many practitioners in my industry rely on guesswork. The human body is the most complex machine on earth, a machine composed of 74 trillion cells, and there is no instruction manual. For every symptom, there are dozens of potential causes. When things go wrong, it is important to have an idea of the origin.
I currently recommend that all incoming individuals complete an Organic Acids test (more details here). Whether this is done prior to the initial consultation or soon after is down to the individual. Whilst this represents a small cost, it always works out cheaper in the long run and typically saves people many months of following incorrect protocols and wasted money on inappropriate supplements. I am inundated with individuals who come to me after completing failed protocols with other practitioners with no favourable change or indeed a worsening of symptoms.
My approach acknowledges the naturopathic philosophy that the body is self-healing, but only once the obstacles have been removed and the deficiencies have been replaced. I always look at the underlying root cause of what’s created the set of symptoms. Trying to heal Candida/SIBO/IBS or any other 'dis-ease' before basic metabolic systems have been addressed is almost always likely to be unsuccessful as these 'dis-eases' are merely symptoms of a deeper underlying root cause.
The main areas I focus on centre around the following:
Nutrient insufficiencies, and metabolic imbalances
Central Nervous System, sleep and neurotransmitter imbalances
Adrenals, thyroid and sex hormone irregularities
Methylation, epigenetics and immune system
Dysbiosis of the gut
Although I don’t ‘treat’ disease in the way the medical system does, I will provide recommendations to ease symptoms whilst we address the underlying imbalances that created the symptoms in the first place. When we look for these underlying root causes, we find the fundamental imbalances. It is these imbalances that are the obstacles and removing these obstacles is paramount to the success of the ‘treatment’. After all, it is not the bloating that stops you from getting better, but the disturbance in your gut from the imbalanced microbiome and a dysfunctional immune system.
As incredible as nutritional therapy can be, it can't fix everything and occasionally I will recommend the services of competent practitioners in other fields of healthcare if I feel it will be of added benefit in the healing journey. One of the most important aspects of healing is to maintain a sufficient flow of oxygen delivery throughout the body, Structural imbalances and poor posture can affect the nervous system leading to improper breathing which can result in a chronic state of low oxygen. The 74 trillion cells that make up the human body need oxygen to to make energy. Without this key component you have a dysfunctional cell, then you have dysfunctional tissues, dysfunctional organs, organ systems and organism.
Low oxygen = low energy = poor healing. Osteopathy is the branch of medicine that specialises in understanding the relationship between structure and function. I refer out to an excellent Osteopathic physician - Ed Madeley, based in Manchester at The Movement & Wellbeing Clinic.