The Ultimate Guide to Functional Lab Testing

By Dr. Erez DO, IFMCP
September 2023
30 min read

In this article, you will learn how the most common functional lab tests can help practitioners uncover root causes and develop personalized, comprehensive treatment plans for their patients.

A woman analyzing functional lab test results.
about functional medicine

What Is Functional Medicine?

Functional Medicine is a personalized, science-based approach to healthcare that aims to identify and address root causes of health issues. It focuses on the interactions among the genetic, environmental, and lifestyle factors that can influence long-term health and complex chronic disease. By tailoring interventions to address each individual as a whole person, and not just their individual systems, functional medicine provides a roadmap to optimal health, moving beyond just the absence of disease.

How Is Functional Medicine Different from Conventional Medicine?

Functional medicine focuses on identifying and addressing the root causes of diseases through a personalized and integrative approach, emphasizing lifestyle modifications and holistic wellness, whereas conventional medicine primarily targets the symptoms of diseases, often through pharmaceuticals and surgeries.

Can Functional Medicine Diagnose Conditions?

Functional medicine practitioners go a step further than diagnosing disease. They seek to understand why the disease occurred in the first place. Through pinpointing and addressing the underlying issues, functional medicine promotes true healing and optimal health.

Conventional Lab Tests vs. Functional Medicine Lab Tests

Conventional lab tests typically focus on identifying markers of diseases or conditions that are already present, often adhering to established norms to diagnose illnesses. These tests are generally used to detect abnormalities in organ function, identify infections, or monitor chronic diseases.

On the other hand, functional lab tests aim to identify the underlying imbalances and dysfunctions before they develop into full-fledged diseases. These tests often explore various bodily systems in more depth, looking at aspects such as nutritional status, metabolic function, hormonal balance, and more. The goal is to offer a more comprehensive view of an individual's health, allowing for personalized treatment plans that address the root causes of health issues, rather than just the symptoms.

Nutrient testing
A snapshot of the NutrEval sample report Results Overview.

NutrEval: Testing the Body's Functional Need for nutrients

The Genova Diagnostics NutrEval Test is an extremely effective tool to evaluate a patient's nutritional needs. This state-of-the-art test assesses a broad spectrum of macro and micronutrients, including essential vitamins, minerals, amino acids, fatty acids, and antioxidants. Furthermore, it also evaluates organic acids which can help evaluate overgrowth and imbalances in gut bacteria, yeast overgrowth, energy production/mitochondria slow downs. It also looks at the body's detox systems and nutrients like glutathione and cysteine that play an outsized role in aiding your body in effectively excreting the hundreds of toxic compounds it comes into contact with on a daily basis. Additionally, it assesses exposure to several toxic compounds including heavy metals such as lead and mercury, styrene, and more.

It is an ideal tool for detecting hidden nutritional deficiencies that conventional lab tests often overlook, allowing for targeted dietary adjustments and supplementation plans. 

Who Should Get This Test?

Patients experiencing: 

  • Unexplained fatigue.
  • Mood disorders.
  • Digestive disorders.
  • Fibromyalgia.
  • ADHD.
  • Depression.

Individuals seeking to:

  • Optimize their health.
  • Prevent disease.
  • Enhance athletic performance.

What Can the NutrEval Uncover?

Results from the NutrEval can uncover:

  • Problems in your metabolism (the process by which your body breaks down food and turns it into energy).
  • Issues with how your body processes nutrients.
  • Whether you're getting enough vital nutrients like proteins and healthy fats.
  • Signs of oxidative stress, a scientific term for damage occurring to your cells, which could put you at risk for chronic diseases.
A snapshot of the NutrEval sample report Nutrient Need Overview section.

What's Required for This Test?

  • Blood draw to evaluate amino acids, fatty acids, and oxidative stress markers.
  • First-morning urine sample to assess organic acids, elemental markers, and certain metabolic markers. 

When Do You Receive Your Results?

Once the NutrEval test has been conducted and samples have been sent to the laboratory, you can generally expect to receive your results within 2-3 weeks.

How Your Practitioner Uses the Data From NutrEval

The data derived from your NutrEval test serves as a roadmap for functional medicine practitioners to create personalized, comprehensive treatment strategies. 

If the test reveals nutrient deficiencies, your practitioner may recommend dietary adjustments or nutritional supplements to replenish deficient elements. For instance, low levels of essential fatty acids could lead to a diet rich in omega-3 sources, or fish oil supplements.

Likewise, a lack of certain vitamins might be addressed with increased intake of specific foods or a tailored supplement regimen.

If metabolic issues are identified, your practitioner may propose lifestyle changes, like exercise routines or sleep hygiene practices, to improve your metabolic health.

Similarly, signs of oxidative stress might warrant a recommendation for antioxidant-rich foods or supplements.

In some cases, the NutrEval test might uncover deeper, more complex health issues. For example, severe nutrient malabsorption could indicate a gut health problem, leading your practitioner to recommend additional lab tests, like stool tests, to get a clearer picture of your gut microbiome. Depending on the findings, they might prescribe probiotics, prebiotics, or other gut health-promoting interventions.

Remember, the goal of functional medicine is to address root causes, not just symptoms. Therefore, your practitioner may also consider factors like your stress levels, emotional health, and environment, integrating them into a holistic care plan. This personalized approach underscores the essence of functional medicine - creating an individualized, patient-centered health strategy, grounded in comprehensive functional lab testing.

stool testing
A snapshot of the GI Effects Comprehensive Stool test sample report.

GI Effects Stool Test: A Snapshot of Gastrointestinal Health

The GI Effects Stool Test is one of the most comprehensive functional medicine lab tests used to evaluate the health and functionality of your gastrointestinal (GI) tract. It works by analyzing your stool sample for a range of markers, including the composition of your gut microbiome, levels of gut inflammation, digestive markers/pancreatic output, presence of any infections, parasites, and signs of malabsorption.

This test is particularly helpful in identifying hidden issues that may not show up in standard blood tests, making it a valuable tool for your functional medicine doctor. With this information, they can develop a more complete understanding of your gut function and how it may be causing common gastrointestinal symptoms.

The results of the GI Effects Stool Test provide a foundation for creating personalized treatment plans focused on improving gut function, which can have a profound impact on overall health and immune function.

Who Should Get This Test?

Individuals suffering from:

  • Diarrhea, constipation, bloating, food intolerance, Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) such as Crohn's or Colitis.
  • Depression, anxiety.
  • Skin conditions —such as atopic dermatitis, psoriasis, acne vulgaris, and dandruff.
  • Metabolic diseases such as diabetes, and insulin resistance.
  • Autoimmune conditions such Hashimoto's, Psoriatic Arthritis, Sjogren's, Ankylosing spondylitis, Lupus, MS, and more.

What Can the GI Effects Stool Test Uncover?

The GI Effects Stool test can uncover:

  • If you have evidence of Inflammatory Bowel Disease or Irritable Bowel Syndrome, two conditions that can have similar symptoms but require different treatments. 
  • Any presence of infection from bacteria, yeast, or parasites.
  • The production of butyrate, a substance produced when we digest fiber that has a healing effect on the protective layer in the gut that helps prevent unwanted particles from entering the bloodstream.
  • Whether your food is being properly broken down (maldigestion).
  • The level of enzymes your pancreas is producing and how well you're digesting fats.
  • Disruptions in your gut's bacterial population (dysbiosis).
  • The level of inflammation in the gut. 

By providing an in-depth view of the gut's overall health, this functional medicine approach can help identify the culprits behind gastrointestinal diseases and common symptoms such as gas, bloating, indigestion, abdominal pain, diarrhea, and constipation.

A snapshot of the GI Effects Commensal Balance overview.

What's Required for This Test?

The patient is required to provide a stool sample collected over three consecutive days. This is because a single day's sample may not accurately reflect the regular state of your gut microbiome due to daily variations. 

When Do You Receive Your Results?

On average, results take 7-17 days after being received by the Genova lab.

How Your Practitioner Uses the Data

Your practitioner will use your results to create a personalized treatment plan tailored specifically to your unique needs. For instance, if your results indicate a gut infection, your practitioner might prescribe targeted antimicrobial therapy. If your gut bacteria is imbalanced, probiotics or dietary changes may be recommended to address dysbiosis. If your body isn't producing enough of a certain digestive enzyme, they may suggest supplemental enzymes to aid in the digestion of specific nutrients.

This functional medicine approach to treatment is what separates a functional medicine doctor from a conventional doctor. It's not just about treating symptoms; it's about getting to the root cause of health issues and addressing them in a comprehensive, patient-centric manner. 

hormone testing
A snapshot of the DUTCH Plus sample report.

DUTCH Plus: Unveiling Hormonal Imbalances

The DUTCH Plus is a functional testing option that helps to understand the body's production of hormones and response to stress throughout the day. It not only looks at standard hormones like estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone it also looks at precursor hormones like DHEA and stress hormones like cortisone/cortisone. Additionally, this test assesses melatonin levels, which can provide information about sleep patterns and circadian rhythm disruptions. The test also measures a few other markers that assess neurotransmitter balance, oxidative stress, and nutrient deficiencies. Hence, the DUTCH Plus provides a comprehensive view of a patient’s hormonal health, offering essential data to develop personalized treatment plans.

Who Should Get this Test?

Individuals suffering from:

  • An inability to lose weight and/or gain muscle.
  • Chronic Fatigue.
  • Insomnia.
  • Low Libido.
  • Menstrual problems including mood changes, acne,
  • Mood disorders.

What Can the DUTCH Plus Test Uncover?

The DUTCH Plus Hormone Test can uncover:

  • Daily Rise and Fall of Stress Hormones: This can help in understanding how well the patient deals with stress throughout the day.
  • Body's Ability to Process Stress Hormone Release: By looking at the metabolites (leftovers) from stress hormones, the test results can uncover the patient's adrenal health and if there are any problems with how these hormones are made or used.
  • Reproductive Health: The levels of reproductive hormones can provide insights into the health of the reproductive system, potentially uncovering issues related to menstrual cycles, pregnancy, and menopause.
  • Nutritional Deficiencies: It can identify potential deficiencies in essential nutrients that might be affecting hormone balance or overall health.
  • Oxidative Stress: The test can detect signs of oxidative stress, which can be harmful to cells and may contribute to various health conditions.
  • Gut Dysbiosis: It can provide insights into imbalances in the gut microbiome, which can influence hormone balance and overall health.
  • Melatonin Levels: The test measures melatonin levels, which can give insights into sleep patterns and potential sleep-related issues.
  • Neuroinflammation: It can detect signs of inflammation in the nervous system, which can be linked to various neurological and systemic conditions.
A snapshot of the DUTCH Plus Adrenal health results.

What's Required for This Test?

Patients need to collect dried urine samples on filter paper and saliva samples in a collection tube over a 24-hour period capturing the hormonal changes that occur throughout the day. This includes both daytime and nighttime samples.

When Do You Receive Your Results?

The turnaround time may vary, but generally, patients can expect results returned to their provider within 5-10 days after the laboratory receives the sample.

How Your Practitioner Uses the Data

If imbalances in reproductive and adrenal hormones are detected, a provider might recommend hormone replacement therapy to restore balance. Restoring sex and adrenal hormone levels in patients can lead to improved energy, better mood and mental clarity, enhanced libido, more stable sleep patterns, increased lean muscle mass, improved body composition, and overall heightened well-being and vitality.

Additionally, irregular levels of stress hormones, such as cortisol, could lead the practitioner to suggest various stress-reducing strategies. These strategies might include meditation, regular physical activity, and self-care routines.

If there are issues with melatonin, the practitioner might advise the patient on sleep hygiene practices. This could involve maintaining a consistent sleep schedule, reducing screen time before bed, and ensuring a calm and temperature-regulated sleeping environment to improve sleep quality. Addressing melatonin imbalances and following recommended sleep hygiene practices can lead to better sleep quality, increased restfulness, and overall improved mental and physical well-being for the patient.

Furthermore, the DUTCH Plus includes organic acid testing, which can pinpoint potential nutritional deficiencies. Based on these results, a practitioner might recommend specific supplements to address any gaps in nutrition. If there's evidence of an imbalance in the gut's microbial community, dietary changes might be suggested. This could involve incorporating more fermented foods, reducing processed foods and sugars, and increasing fiber intake to promote a healthier gut.

Addressing nutritional deficiencies and optimizing gut health with the DUTCH Plus test can boost energy, improve mood, strengthen immunity, clear skin, aid digestion, enhance mental clarity, and support overall wellness and vitality.

In essence, the DUTCH Plus Hormone test offers a comprehensive view of hormonal health, enabling functional medicine practitioners to tailor treatments to an individual's unique needs, addressing everything from hormonal imbalances to stress and gut health.

For Women: When to Opt for DUTCH Cycle Mapping Plus

This advanced testing method goes a step further than the DUTCH Plus, offering a month-long analysis to trace the intricate patterns of hormone fluctuations throughout a woman's cycle.

This comprehensive approach is particularly beneficial for:

  • Women Facing Infertility Issues: It aids in pinpointing the underlying hormonal imbalances that might be hindering the conception process.
  • Absent Menstrual Cycles with Hormonal Activity: For women who have hormonal fluctuations but do not experience a menstrual cycle, this test can provide valuable insights into their unique hormonal patterns.
  • Partial Hysterectomy Cases: In instances where women have had a partial hysterectomy, retaining their ovaries but not the uterus, this test can offer a detailed view of the hormonal activity that is still occurring.
  • Ablations: Women who have undergone ablations can benefit from this test to understand the current state of their hormonal health.
  • Irregular Menstrual Cycles: It serves as a guiding tool for women grappling with irregular cycles, helping to identify the root causes and facilitating more targeted interventions.
  • Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS): For women with PCOS, this test can be a cornerstone in mapping out an effective management plan, by offering a deep dive into their hormonal profile.
  • Fluctuating Hormonal Symptoms: Women who experience a roller-coaster of symptoms throughout their cycle can find answers and potential solutions through this detailed analysis.
  • Addressing Specific Concerns: It is also a potent tool in addressing specific concerns like PMS, mid-cycle spotting, migraines, and other symptoms that tend to vary throughout the cycle.
Cv & Metabolic testing
A snapshot of the Boston Heart sample report indicating Heart Disease risk.

Advanced Cardiovascular and Metabolic Testing Through Boston Heart

Boston Heart Diagnostics offers an extensive array of tests that go beyond traditional lipid profiles to uncover heart disease risk and metabolic syndrome risk. These tests include advanced cholesterol testing, inflammation and metabolic tests, and genetic tests.

For instance, advanced cholesterol tests provide a more comprehensive view of lipid-related risk. Inflammation tests identify markers that could indicate an increased risk for heart disease, while metabolic tests check for diabetes risk and insulin resistance. The genetic tests provided by Boston Heart can reveal inherited traits that may affect long-term heart health.

With a vast selection of markers, including Apo-B, LDL-particle number, lp(a), ApoA, sdLDL-c, HbA1c, adiponectin, insulin, homocysteine, Hs-CRP, and many more, these tests offer a deep dive into an individual's heart health and metabolic health. This depth of analysis allows healthcare providers to risk stratify and pinpoint specific areas of focus to reduce potential risks.

Who Should Get this Test?

Individuals with:

  • Family history of heart disease.
  • High cholesterol levels.
  • High blood pressure.
  • Diabetes.
  • A recent heart attack or stroke.
  • A history of smoking.
  • A sedentary lifestyle.
  • An interest in early preventative measures even without obvious risk factors.
  • A healthcare provider who deems it necessary based on an individual's overall health profile and lifestyle factors.

What Can the Boston Heart Tests Uncover?

The Boston Heart Tests can uncover a host of crucial information about your heart health and overall wellness, such as:

  • In-depth Cholesterol details: Beyond just indicating high or low cholesterol levels, these tests can tell us about the size and quantity of "bad" cholesterol particles in your blood.
  • Inflammation: These tests can highlight if your body is experiencing long-term inflammation.
  • Genetic Risks: Certain genes can make you more susceptible to heart disease. The tests can identify these genes, providing insights into any inherited heart disease risks.
  • Metabolic Health: These tests can warn us about conditions like insulin resistance and diabetes.
  • Nutrient Imbalance: Lack or excess of certain vitamins, minerals, and fatty acids can adversely affect your heart.
  • Hormone Imbalance: The tests can detect irregularities in stress-related and metabolism-related hormones.
  • Lifestyle Impact: Habits such as smoking, poor diet, and high-stress levels can affect your heart health. These tests can identify the impact of such lifestyle factors.
A snapshot of Boston Heart's Lipid Profile sample report.

What's Required for This Test?

The Boston Heart tests require a blood sample from the patient, which is usually drawn by a healthcare professional in a clinical setting. The patient might also need to fast for a specific period before the test, depending on the particular test being conducted. For instance, lipid panel tests often require 9-12 hours of fasting for accurate results.

When Do You Receive Your Results?

The turnaround time for receiving results from the Boston Heart tests can vary. Typically, you can expect to receive a comprehensive report within two weeks of sample submission.

How Your Practitioner Uses the Data

Functional medicine practitioners utilize the data from Boston Heart tests to treat their patients in a comprehensive and holistic manner. For instance, if a patient's test shows high levels of ApoB (a protein that is associated with heart disease risk), the practitioner would not only prescribe medication to lower these levels, but they would also delve deeper to uncover the root causes. This could mean investigating aspects such as the patient's diet, lifestyle, stress levels, and genetic factors which could be contributing to the elevated levels.

In another scenario, if a patient's test results indicated inflammation markers, the practitioner would look beyond merely prescribing anti-inflammatory medication. They would consider the patient's total body system including gut health, environmental exposure, sleep patterns, and even emotional well-being, as these could all be potential sources of inflammation.

The data from Boston Heart tests provides a more complete picture of the patient's cardiovascular and metabolic health than a conventional lipid panel, enabling functional medicine practitioners to create a personalized, multidimensional treatment plan that addresses not just the symptoms, but the underlying root causes. This is the essence of functional lab testing and the foundation of functional medicine.

epigenetic testing
A snapshot of Nebula Genomics Dashboard displaying whole-genome sequencing results.

Unlock Your Genetic Potential with Epigenetic Testing and Whole Genome Sequencing

Whole-genome sequencing is a cutting-edge procedure that enables healthcare practitioners to thoroughly analyze and interpret the entire genetic makeup of a patient. By uncovering a patient's genetic blueprint, practitioners gain a deeper understanding of a patient's health, lineage, and how specific traits are inherited through generations. These insights can significantly influence a patient's personalized treatment plan.

The "Deep" test by Nebula Genomics is a whole genome sequencing test commonly used by functional medicine doctors. By exploring genetic markers such as slow COMT, MTHFR, and the histamine pathway, the Nebula Genomics Deep Test can shed light on hidden drivers of health issues, including cognitive dysfunctions.

With the insights derived from such testing, functional medicine practitioners can devise personalized nutritional strategies, tailored to an individual's genetic profile, to optimize health and prevent disease. This exemplifies the potential of functional lab testing, taking us a step closer to truly personalized medicine.

Who Should Get This Test?

The Nebula Genomics test can serve a variety of patients seeking a deeper understanding of their health and wellness. These include:

  • Genetic Health Seekers: Individuals predisposed to certain health conditions or who are curious about possible inherited genetic mutations.
  • Data Enthusiasts: Those who want to take a deep dive into their genomic data to fully understand their genetic makeup.
  • Diet and Fitness Seekers: Patients looking for an effective diet plan and supplementation strategy that aligns with their individual genetic profile. Similarly, individuals wishing to find an exercise regimen for weight loss tailored to their genetics could benefit from this test.
  • Mind and Behavior Explorers: Those interested in understanding the genetic influences on their mind, behavior, and personality.
  • Longevity Seekers: Patients who are interested in using their genetic information to potentially extend their lifespan.
  • Oral Health Concerned: Individuals keen on understanding their oral microbiome for improved dental hygiene and overall oral health.

What Can Epigenetic Testing Uncover?

The Nebula Genomics Deep Test can uncover a wealth of health insights that go beyond conventional health assessments, such as:

  • Genetic Predispositions: Identification of genetic markers that may indicate a predisposition to certain health conditions or diseases.
  • Nutritional Insights: Detailed insights into how one's genes can influence their response to different nutrients, helping in the formulation of personalized nutritional plans.
  • Drug Response: Analysis of how an individual might respond to various medications, a field known as pharmacogenomics, which can help in personalizing drug prescriptions to minimize side effects and maximize effectiveness.
  • Rare Genetic Variants: Identification of rare genetic variants that might be associated with specific health conditions, helping in early detection and management.
A snapshot of whole-genome sequencing results in table format.

What's Required for This Test?

The first step is to order the Home DNA Testing Kit. Once you receive the kit, you will find it contains a cheek swab for sample collection. You are required to collect a sample of your DNA by gently rubbing the swab against the inner side of your cheek.

When Do You Receive Your Results?

Once your sample has been collected and sent to the lab, it typically takes 2-4 weeks for the Nebula Genomics Deep Test results to be ready.

How Your Practitioner Uses the Data

Nutritional Plans

In the modern era of personalized healthcare, nutritional plans are no longer one-size-fits-all. By analyzing an individual's genetic data, healthcare practitioners can craft dietary guidelines that are uniquely tailored to each person's genetic predispositions. This approach not only helps in addressing specific health conditions but also aids in preventing nutrient deficiencies, paving the way for a healthier lifestyle.

Fitness Regimens

Fitness regimens are evolving to become more personalized and effective. By considering a person's genetic makeup, these programs can be customized to focus on areas where an individual is more likely to benefit or avoid potential injuries. This genetic insight fosters a more informed approach to physical health, promoting well-being and fitness that aligns with one's genetic blueprint.

Mental Health Strategies

Mental health strategies are becoming increasingly sophisticated with the integration of genetic data. By understanding the genetic predispositions to certain mental health conditions, practitioners can develop preventive measures or targeted therapies. This approach promotes a proactive stance towards mental health, encouraging strategies that are aligned with an individual's unique genetic makeup.


Pharmacogenomics stands at the forefront of personalized medicine, utilizing genetic data to predict an individual's response to various medications. This innovative approach allows for the customization of drug prescriptions, minimizing side effects and maximizing effectiveness. It heralds a new era in medicine, where treatments are finely tuned to align with each person's genetic profile.

Preventive Healthcare

Preventive healthcare is witnessing a revolution with the integration of genetic insights. By identifying genetic markers that signal a higher risk for certain diseases, healthcare practitioners can initiate early interventions and suggest lifestyle adjustments. This strategy aims to mitigate risks and foster a proactive approach to health, potentially averting serious health issues before they manifest.

Holistic Wellness Programs

Holistic wellness programs are embracing the wealth of information provided by genetic data. These programs incorporate various strategies, including stress management, sleep optimization, and cognitive function enhancement, all tailored to an individual's genetic profile. This approach promotes overall well-being, fostering a balanced and healthy lifestyle that resonates with one's genetic influences.

16s rRna Microbiome testing
16s rRNA Microbiome Testing results preview.

16s rRNA Microbiome Testing

The Ombre Gut Microbiome Health test is an inexpensive, non-invasive tool that utilizes the 16s ribosomal RNA gene to identify and classify the diverse range of bacteria residing in the gastrointestinal tract. By utilizing this test, practitioners can identify imbalances in the gut microbiome, which might lead to various health issues such as digestive problems, immune deficiencies, and nutrient malabsorption.

With the personalized recommendations provided in the report and through consultation with their provider, individuals can make informed decisions about their diet, lifestyle, and supplement choices to optimize their gut health and prevent potential health issues.

Who Should Get this Test?

  • Individuals with Chronic Digestive Issues: Patients experiencing persistent gastrointestinal problems such as chronic constipation, diarrhea, or irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) who are seeking to understand the underlying bacterial dynamics in their gut.
  • Patients with Autoimmune Diseases: Individuals diagnosed with autoimmune conditions like multiple sclerosis or rheumatoid arthritis, where gut health is suspected to influence disease activity or symptom severity.
  • Individuals Undergoing Probiotic Therapy: Patients who are currently on or considering probiotic therapy, to guide the selection of appropriate probiotic strains based on the unique composition of their gut microbiome.
  • People with Unexplained Health Issues: Individuals experiencing unexplained health issues, where traditional diagnostic methods have been unable to pinpoint the cause, as the test can uncover gut dysbiosis which might be contributing to their symptoms.
  • Individuals on Antibiotic Treatments: Patients who have undergone prolonged antibiotic treatments, which might have altered their gut microbiome, and are looking to restore a healthy bacterial balance.

What can 16s rRNA Microbiome testing Uncover?

The Ombre Gut Microbiome Health test can uncover:

  • Gut Dysbiosis: Identifying imbalances in the gut microbiome, such as an overgrowth of harmful bacteria or a deficiency of beneficial bacteria, which can be linked to various health issues including digestive disorders and autoimmune diseases.
  • Connections to Autoimmune Diseases: Uncovering potential links between gut health and autoimmune conditions, helping to determine if gut dysbiosis is exacerbating symptoms or disease activity in conditions like multiple sclerosis or rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Digestive Health Insights: Providing critical insights into digestive health by pinpointing bacterial imbalances that might be causing symptoms such as chronic constipation or diarrhea, thereby guiding personalized interventions to restore gut health.
  • Guidance for Probiotic Therapy: Offering a basis for the formulation of personalized probiotic therapies, by analyzing the unique composition of an individual's gut microbiome, which can aid in restoring a healthy bacterial balance and enhancing overall well-being.

What's Required for this Test?

At Home Sample Collection: A stool sample is required for this test.

When Do You Receive Your Results?

Once your sample has been collected and sent to the lab, it typically takes between 2 to 3 weeks for your provider to receive the results of the Ombre Gut Microbiome Health test.

How Your Practitioner Uses the Data

The data derived from the Ombre Gut Microbiome Health Test can be a valuable resource for functional medicine practitioners in devising personalized treatment plans. Here are some ways the data might be used:

Personalized Diet Plans: Based on the microbiome report, practitioners can develop personalized diet plans that include food suggestions aimed at fostering a healthy gut environment. This could potentially help in alleviating symptoms of digestive issues and enhancing overall well-being.

Probiotic Recommendations: The test offers targeted probiotic recommendations, which can be used by practitioners to suggest specific probiotic supplements that can help in balancing the gut microbiome, thereby addressing various GI-related symptoms and enhancing immunity.

Holistic Health Improvement: By understanding the state of your gut microbiome, practitioners can work on a holistic approach to improve various aspects of your health including energy levels, immunity, and metabolic function. This could be through lifestyle modifications and supplement recommendations.

Monitoring and Adjusting Treatment Plans: The test can be used as a monitoring tool to track the progress of the treatment plans. Based on the changes observed in the follow-up tests, practitioners can make necessary adjustments to the treatment plans to ensure optimal results.

sibo breath testing
A snapshot of the triosmart collection instruction information packet.

trio-smart SIBO Breath Test: A Comprehensive Overview

SIBO, or Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth, is a condition characterized by an imbalance in the microorganisms residing in your gut, specifically the small intestine. Normally, the small intestine contains a balanced amount of bacteria that aid in healthy digestion. However, when there is an overgrowth of bacteria, particularly the wrong kind, it can disrupt this balance, leading to a series of uncomfortable symptoms such as gas and diarrhea. Moreover, this imbalance can hinder your body's ability to properly digest and absorb nutrients from the food you consume.

The trio-smart SIBO Breath Test is a groundbreaking diagnostic tool designed to analyze the three main gases generated during the fermentation process in your digestive system. This test can help identify conditions such as Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO), Intestinal Methanogenic Overgrowth (IMO), and elevated levels of hydrogen sulfide in the gut.

Who Should Get this Test?

  • Individuals experiencing persistent digestive issues such as bloating, gas, constipation, or diarrhea.
  • Those who suspect they might have conditions like Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO) or Intestinal Methanogenic Overgrowth (IMO).
  • Patients who have not found answers to their gut health issues through other diagnostic methods and are looking for a more comprehensive analysis of their gut health.
  • Individuals interested in understanding their gut health better and are looking for a convenient at-home testing option.
  • Patients who are working with healthcare providers to develop a personalized treatment plan for their gut health issues and need detailed information on their gut gas composition.

What can the TrioSmart SIBO Breath Test Uncover?

The TrioSmart can uncover:

  • Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO): A condition where there is an excessive amount of bacteria in the small intestine, which can lead to symptoms like bloating, gas, and diarrhea.
  • Intestinal Methanogenic Overgrowth (IMO): A condition characterized by an overgrowth of methane-producing bacteria in the intestine, which can cause constipation and other digestive issues.
  • Excess Hydrogen Sulfide: High levels of hydrogen sulfide in the gut can be associated with various health issues, including inflammation and gastrointestinal symptoms.
  • Gut Health Insights: By measuring the levels of hydrogen, methane, and hydrogen sulfide in the breath, the test can provide a more complete picture of an individual's gut health, potentially illuminating underlying issues that might be causing symptoms.

What's Required for This Test?

At-Home Sample Collection: TrioSmart offers a convenient at-home breath test.

When Do You Receive Your Results?

Results will be available within seven business days after your sample is received.

A snapshot of the triosmart collection instructions PDF.

How Your Practitioner Uses the Data

Functional medicine practitioners can harness the insights from SIBO breath tests to craft highly personalized interventions for their patients. For instance, the test results can guide the formulation of individualized diet plans, potentially recommending a shift to a low-FODMAP diet to mitigate symptoms like bloating and discomfort. These plans can be complemented with suitable probiotic and prebiotic supplements to nurture a balanced gut flora. Moreover, in severe cases of bacterial overgrowth, targeted antibiotic therapy might be initiated to curb the bacterial population in the small intestine, thereby restoring digestive harmony. An example of this could be prescribing a course of Rifaximin for a patient showing high levels of bacterial growth in the test results.

In addition to dietary adjustments, practitioners might address nutrient malabsorption issues that often accompany SIBO. For instance, they might prescribe iron supplements to a patient showing signs of anemia due to nutrient malabsorption. Furthermore, to enhance the digestive process and alleviate symptoms like gas, practitioners might recommend digestive enzyme supplements. These supplements can assist in breaking down food more efficiently, fostering better nutrient absorption and reducing digestive discomfort.

To ensure the effectiveness of the treatment plan, practitioners might schedule follow-up testing, adjusting the treatment protocol based on the progress monitored. Collaborative care is often emphasized, with practitioners working alongside dietitians and gastroenterologists to offer a comprehensive approach to managing SIBO. For example, a practitioner might refer a patient to a dietitian to further tailor their diet based on the breath test results. Additionally, education and counseling play a pivotal role in the treatment process. Practitioners can empower patients by providing them with the knowledge and tools to manage their symptoms effectively, fostering a proactive approach to their health journey.

metals testing
A snapshot of the Quicksilver combo test sample report.

Quicksilver Scientific Combined Test Kit: A Detailed Insight

The Quicksilver Scientific Combined Test, encompassing the Mercury Tri-Test and the Blood Metals Panel, stands as a pivotal tool in the modern healthcare landscape, offering a detailed analysis of an individual's exposure to toxic elements and potential nutrient deficiencies. This comprehensive test scrutinizes the levels of both inorganic and methyl mercury in the body, providing a nuanced view of a person's health status. By evaluating a broad spectrum of elements, it aids in uncovering potential health risks and facilitates the creation of personalized healthcare strategies.

This test serves as a valuable tool in understanding both your nutrient levels and exposure to toxic metals, helping to pinpoint imbalances or elevated levels of certain elements in your blood.

Who Should Get this Test?

  • Individuals Concerned About Heavy Metal Exposure: People who suspect they have been exposed to heavy metals through environmental factors, occupation, or lifestyle choices might consider this test to assess their levels of toxic metals.
  • Patients with Chronic Health Issues: Individuals experiencing chronic health issues that might be linked to nutrient imbalances or toxic metal exposure could use this test to gain insights into potential underlying causes.
  • Individuals Living in Polluted Areas: People residing in areas with high levels of pollution might consider this test to assess the impact of environmental factors on their health.
  • People Undergoing Detox Programs: Individuals who are planning to undergo detox programs might use this test to get a baseline assessment of their toxin levels and monitor the effectiveness of the detox process.

What Can the Quicksilver Combined Test Uncover?

Here's what the results can reveal:

  • Toxic Metal Exposure: The test can detect the presence and levels of potentially toxic metals like lead, mercury, and arsenic in the blood. This information can be crucial in identifying any exposure to harmful metals, which might be contributing to health issues.
  • Potential Health Risks: By identifying elevated levels of toxic metals, the test can help in pinpointing potential health risks associated with heavy metal toxicity, which can include neurological issues, cardiovascular problems, and kidney damage, among others.
  • Insights into Environmental Exposures: The test can provide insights into potential environmental exposures to toxic metals, helping individuals to understand the impact of their surroundings on their health and take necessary precautions.
  • Potential Health Risks: By identifying elevated levels of toxic metals, the test can help in pinpointing potential health risks associated with heavy metal toxicity, which can include neurological issues, cardiovascular problems, and kidney damage, among others.
  • Guidance for Treatment Plans: Healthcare practitioners can use the results to develop personalized treatment plans for their patients. For instance, if a deficiency in a certain nutrient is identified, a practitioner might recommend dietary adjustments or supplementation to address the issue.
A sample graph showing toxic element exposure.

What's required for this test?

  • Blood Sample: The blood sample collection must be performed by a phlebotomist. You need to schedule a blood draw appointment, preferably between Monday and Wednesday. Two tubes of blood are required for this test.
  • Urine Sample: You need to collect a mid-stream sample from your first morning urination in the provided collection cup, which then needs to be transferred to a test tube (between lines 9 and 11 on the tube). This should be done within 48 hours of the blood sample collection. It is advised not to collect urine samples during menstruation.
  • Hair Sample: A section of hair (about 100-200 strands, approximately 1/2-inch wide when flattened) needs to be collected from the base of the back of your head. Only the 1 inch closest to the skin should be kept, and it should be placed in the provided collection bag. If scalp hair is insufficient or treated with a perm, pubic or body hair can be used instead.

When Do You Receive Your Results?

Your provider should receive the results around 3 weeks after the sample has been received at the lab.

How Your Practitioner Uses the Data

In the realm of personalized healthcare, the Quicksilver Combined Test stands as a potent tool in a practitioner's arsenal. For instance, consider a patient who has been experiencing chronic fatigue and neurological issues. The test results reveal elevated levels of mercury and lead in their blood, possibly indicating exposure to these toxic metals through environmental factors or dietary choices. Armed with this data, the practitioner can develop a targeted detoxification program, which might include chelation therapy to remove heavy metals from the body, coupled with dietary adjustments to minimize further exposure. Moreover, the practitioner might recommend supplements that can aid in the detoxification process, such as activated charcoal or specific nutrients known to support liver function, the body's primary detox organ.

In another scenario, the test might uncover deficiencies in essential nutrient elements like magnesium and selenium in a patient who has been struggling with muscle weakness and immune system issues. Recognizing these deficiencies, the practitioner can create a personalized nutrition plan that focuses on increasing the intake of these vital nutrients through diet and supplementation. For instance, they might recommend a diet rich in nuts, seeds, and leafy greens to boost magnesium levels and the inclusion of selenium-rich foods like Brazil nuts and sunflower seeds. Additionally, they might suggest regular monitoring to track the progress and adjust the plan as necessary, ensuring the patient is on the path to improved health and well-being.

Furthermore, practitioners can use the test as a preventive tool, helping patients to avoid potential health issues before they arise. For example, a patient living in an area with high pollution levels might undergo the test as a part of a regular health check-up. If the test identifies elevated levels of certain toxic metals, the practitioner might advise lifestyle changes to reduce exposure, such as using water filters to remove contaminants and opting for organic foods to avoid pesticide residues. This proactive approach not only helps in addressing current health issues but also fosters a preventive stance, empowering patients to take control of their health and avoid potential risks in the future.

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