Today I finished the first phase of treatment with my functional medicine doctor, Dr. Mark Scott, at the Total Health Center in Virginia Beach (http://totalhealthcentervb.com/). I am very excited to say I have seen drastic improvement this semester!
At the start of the semester, I was tested for food sensitivities. I learned I have two genes that make me susceptible to gluten sensitivity, and my sensitivity test confirmed that gluten is a big issue for me (I already knew this from experience, but it was very validating for tests to back up my own observations). Once we got my test results, my doctor put me on an elimination diet while we worked on healing my digestive system and supporting adrenal function. Most of the semester, I've eaten nothing but good-quality meat and vegetables (excluding nightshade vegetables) and a modest amount of low-glycemic fruit. Alas, no coffee or caffeine. My doctor started me small with a probiotic, vitamin D, vitamin B12, vitamin K2, and a digestive support formula. After a few weeks, we added magnesium, l-carnitine, melatonin, and finally MCT oil and saltwater, to the mix...although I must admit I'm lousy at remembering to take the saltwater. I'm trying to simply add the MCT oil to everything I cook....when I remember to, that is.
Now I'm in the re-introduction phase. So far, I have reintroduced almonds and pecans with no problem. I don't know how I survived my elimination diet all those weeks without almond butter!
In a nutshell, my level of functioning has skyrocketed from about a 35% functioning level all the way to 70%, even with many days where I have fallen off the low-carb wagon. Flare weeks have turned into flare days. I also handle stress much better and recover from events so much quicker. Much of my health success is attributed to my doctor, but it is very worth mentioning that I have also been working through some personal/emotional issues that came to my attention this past semester. I believe these longstanding issues have been indirectly affecting my health. Now I have a functional doctor and a counselor helping me with the physical and emotional sides of healing, respectively.
So what next? At this point, I am getting more labwork done so we can determine the next phase of treatment. I'll also continue to reintroduce different foods. To see details of how my health has improved this semester, check out my video testimony at the Total Health Center below: