Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens
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Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens

Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens

Mental health illnesses can arise and worsen as a result of nutrient deficiencies. We tend to always focus on psychological and environmental aspects when discussing mental health. But a rising amount of research emphasizes how important nutrition is for optimal mental health. 

 

Understanding the Link between Mental Health and Nutrient Deficiencies

The brain is a complex organ that relies on a delicate balance of nutrients to function optimally. Deficiencies in key vitamins, minerals, and other essential nutrients can disrupt the brain’s chemical balance and compromise its ability to regulate mood, cognition, and behavior. For example, deficiencies in B vitamins, omega-3 fatty acids, magnesium, zinc, and vitamin D have been associated with increased risk of depression, anxiety, and other mental health disorders.

 

Identifying Nutrient Deficiencies 

Since symptoms of mental health illnesses might resemble those of nutritional deficits, distinguishing them can be really difficult. But to evaluate a person’s nutritional condition, functional medicine practitioners use a range of diagnostic methods, such as thorough nutrient testing. These examinations gauge the body’s concentrations of particular nutrients, assisting in the discovery of nutritional deficiencies that might be causing symptoms related to mental health.

Functional Approaches to Nutritional Support 

Functional medicine takes a personalized approach to address nutrient deficiencies and optimize mental health. Treatment plans are tailored to each individual’s unique needs and may include the following strategies:

 

Balanced and Individualized Diet: A nutrient-dense diet is foundational for mental well-being. Functional medicine practitioners emphasize whole, unprocessed foods rich in fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, healthy fats, and complex carbohydrates. They also consider dietary restrictions, food sensitivities, and the individual’s biochemistry to create personalized meal plans.

 

Targeted Supplementation: In cases where nutrient deficiencies are identified, targeted supplementation may be recommended. This approach ensures that individuals receive adequate amounts of specific nutrients crucial for mental health. For example, omega-3 fatty acid supplementation has shown promising results in reducing symptoms of depression and anxiety.

 

Gut Health Optimization: The gut-brain connection is vital in mental health. Functional medicine practitioners address gut imbalances, such as dysbiosis and leaky gut, which can impair nutrient absorption and contribute to inflammation. Probiotics, prebiotics, and other gut-supportive interventions may be recommended to restore microbial balance and enhance nutrient absorption.

 

Lifestyle Modifications: Lifestyle factors play a significant role in mental health and nutrient absorption. Stress management techniques, regular physical activity, and adequate sleep are essential components of functional medicine approaches. These lifestyle modifications support overall well-being and help optimize nutrient utilization.

 

Recognizing the impact of nutrient deficiencies on mental health is crucial for comprehensive treatment and support. Here at Five Journeys, we offer an integrative approach, addressing nutrient imbalances through personalized dietary modifications, targeted supplementation, and lifestyle adjustments. By optimizing nutritional support, we can foster improved mental well-being and enhance overall quality of life! Contact us now.

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Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens

WHY DO WE DO THIS TEST?

This test looks for the inappropriate presence of bacteria in the small intestine known as Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth or “SIBO”.

LOCATION PERFORMED

At home

SPECIMEN TYPE

Breath

COLLECTION INSTRUCTIONS

COST

$85-$225 depending on insurance coverage. 

Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens

WHY DO WE DO THIS TEST?

This test evaluates the presence of harmful mycotoxins (toxins produced by molds).

LOCATION PERFORMED

At Home

SPECIMEN TYPE

Urine

COLLECTION INSTRUCTIONS

SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS

Glutathione for 1 week, then bath or sauna.

COST

$699

INSURANCE

Fully covered by Medicare. Repeat test prices $249

Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens

WHY DO WE DO THIS TEST?

This test evaluates the genetic profile for multiple health indicators. Click here for more information.

LOCATION PERFORMED

At home

SPECIMEN TYPE

Blood Spot

COST

$319

INSURANCE

No insurance accepted

COLLECTION INSTRUCTIONS

Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens

WHY DO WE DO THIS TEST?

This company can test for lyme, babesia, bartonella and additional tick-borne illnesses. Click here for more information.

LOCATION PERFORMED

In office

SPECIMEN TYPE

Blood

COST

around $1600 (depends on panel selected)

INSURANCE

Fully covered by Medicare. May be reimbursed with PPO plans.
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens

WHY DO WE DO THIS TEST?

This test evaluates the presence of harmful mycotoxins (toxins produced by molds).

LOCATION PERFORMED

At home

BLOOD FLUID

Urine

SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS

Glutathione for 1 week, then bath or sauna.

COST

$299

INSURANCE

No insurance accepted
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens

WHY DO WE DO THIS TEST?

This test evaluates a wide range of environmental toxins that may be leading to harmful health effects.

LOCATION PERFORMED

At home

BLOOD FLUID

Urine

SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS

Glutathione for 1 week, then bath or sauna.

COST

$199

INSURANCE

No insurance accepted $30 discount given if done with mycotoxins.
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens

WHY DO WE DO THIS TEST?

Blood work for blood count, urinalysis and vitamin levels.

LOCATION PERFORMED

BLOOD FLUID

Blood

NOTES

You often have to fast for these tests-please check your providers notes.

COST

Depending on the test, deductible or copay may apply.

INSURANCE

Depends on insurance coverage, deductible or copay may apply.
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens

WHY DO WE DO THIS TEST?

Glyphosate (“Round Up”) is a pesticide that is widely used and this test indicates the body’s levels.

LOCATION PERFORMED

At home

BLOOD FLUID

Urine

SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS

Glutathione for 1 week, then bath or sauna.

COST

$99 ($69 if performed with mycotoxins or environmental toxins).

INSURANCE

No insurance accepted $30 discount given if done with mycotoxins or GPL Tox.
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens

WHY DO WE DO THIS TEST?

This test evaluates many measures including micronutrients, antioxidants, minerals, detox, overview of gut function, omegas and toxic exposure. Click here for more information.

LOCATION PERFORMED

At home.

SPECIMEN TYPE

Urine

COST

$179 – $400

INSURANCE

Depending on insurance coverage. Fully covered by Medicare.

INSTRUCTIONS

Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens

WHY DO WE DO THIS TEST?

This test evaluates the gut function and indicates microbiome balance, overgrowth, infection, inflammation, parasites and digestive efficacy. Click here for more information.

LOCATION PERFORMED

At home

SPECIMEN TYPE

Stool

COST

$179-$425 depending on insurance coverage.

INSURANCE

Depending on insurance coverage. Fully covered by Medicare.

SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS

No probiotics for one week.

VIDEO INSTRUCTIONS

Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens

WHY DO WE DO THIS TEST?

This test evaluates the full menstrual cycle, female hormones, and adrenal profile.

LOCATION PERFORMED

At home

BLOOD FLUID

Urine

COST

$160-$329

INSURANCE

Depending on insurance coverage. Fully covered by Medicare.

NOTES

Must be off hormones in order to do the testing.
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens

WHY DO WE DO THIS TEST?

This test is specifically for a tick-borne illness called “Bartonella”.

LOCATION PERFORMED

In office

BLOOD FLUID

Blood

COST

$260

INSURANCE

No insurance accepted
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens

WHY DO WE DO THIS TEST?

This test evaluates the presence of potentially harmful heavy metals stored in the body.  Click here for more information.

LOCATION PERFORMED

At home

SPECIMEN TYPE

Urine

COST

Testing: $79 x2 paid to Doctor’s Data
DMSA: $38 paid to Johnson’s Compounding Pharmacy

INSURANCE

Not covered by Insurance
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens

WHY DO WE DO THIS TEST?

This test measures saliva cortisol testing throughout the course of one day and informs us where there might be an adrenal imbalance.

LOCATION PERFORMED

At home

BLOOD FLUID

Saliva

COST

$80

INSURANCE

No insurance coverage

Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens
Mental Health Through a Functional Medicine Lens

WHY DO WE DO THIS TEST?

This test is designed to look at food sensitivities (IgG immune responses). It is available in both a 99 or 184 panel. Click here for more information.

LOCATION PERFORMED

In office

SPECIMEN TYPE

Blood

COST

$129-238

INSURANCE

No insurance accepted