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Functional Medicine

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Functional Medicine Doctor in Los Angeles,CA

Are you stressed? Do you have low energy? Hormone imbalances? Difficult weight loss? Trouble sleeping? Poor digestion? High Blood Sugar? High Cholesterol? High Blood Pressure? You may benefit from Functional Medicine

What is Functional Medicine?

Functional Medicine, or Functional Nutrition, addresses the underlying causes of disease by using a set of assessment tools and treatments protocols that focus on the optimal functioning of the body and its organs. Traditional medicine is symptom-based, acute-centered care which follows the pathophysiological paradigm. This pathophysiological paradigm states that you know you have a pathology (condition, disease), check the physiological markers and treat the pathogen with drugs or surgery.  Whereas, Functional Medicine, or functional nutrition is based on the physiopathology paradigm, which looks at the overall physiology of the individual through assessing molecular changes and patterns which are the fingerprint to all disease.  Functional Medicine, or functional nutritional practitioners perform a detailed health assessment and lifestyle evaluation followed by a detailed blood panel to assess that the physiology is out of optimal balance and treat with nutritional protocols and lifestyle changes to balance the physiology before disease processes manifest into gross clinical symptoms. If gross clinical symptoms have already manifested, then the goal is to still balance the physiology while being mindful of the patients symptoms and toxicity levels.  The idea is that as the physiology goes towards balance and the blood chemistry reaches optimal levels the symptoms should disappear. Sometimes the symptoms may increase due to healing crisis before they get better.  You don’t have to have gross clinical symptoms to benefit from a Functional Medicine assessment.

What is a Functional Medicine Assessment?

A Functional Medicine assessment consists of a detailed health and lifestyle evaluation along with a specific blood panel.  Dr. Rahim has specifically designed a comprehensive blood panel used by over a thousand labs in the country called Dr. Rahim’s Wellness and Prevention Panel.

The blood panel includes:

Lipids: This is a group of simple blood tests that reveal important information about the types, amount and distribution of the various types of fats (lipids) in the bloodstream. Includes Total Cholesterol, HDL (good) Cholesterol, LDL (bad) Cholesterol, Risk Ratio (good to total), and Triglycerides.

Complete Blood Count(CBC’s): It is a blood test that checks hemoglobin, hematocrit, red blood cells (RBC), white blood cells (WBC), and platelets. Used as a broad screening test to check for such disorders as anemia, infection, and many other diseases. Changing levels of red or white blood cells can indicate disease or infection and are very helpful in a health screening.

Fluids and Electrolytes: Electrolytes are minerals in your body that have an electric charge. They are in your blood, urine and body fluids. Maintaining the right balance of electrolytes helps your body’s blood chemistry, muscle action and other processes. Sodium, potassium, chlorine, and carbon dioxide are all electrolytes. You get them from the foods you eat and the fluids you drink.  Levels of electrolytes in your body can become too low or too high. That can happen when the amount of water in your body changes, causing dehydration or overhydration. Causes include some medicines, vomiting, diarrhea, sweating or kidney problems. Problems most often occur with levels of sodium, potassium or calcium. It includes: Chloride, Potassium, Sodium and Carbon Dioxide.

Thyroid w/TSH: Thyroid function is critical to your metabolism and affects your energy level, heart rate, weight control and more. The thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) is produced in the pituitary gland and stimulates the production of thyroid hormones. The TSH helps identify an underactive or overactive thyroid state. This comprehensive evaluation of your thyroid hormone levels includes: T-3 Uptake, T4 total, Free Thyroxine Index (T7), and Thyroid-Stimulating Hormone (TSH).

Liver: The liver panel includes several blood tests measuring specific proteins and liver enzymes in the blood. This combination of blood tests is designed to give you a complete picture of the state of your liver and help detect liver disease and measure potential liver damage. Some of the blood tests are associated with the integrity of the liver cells (i.e. ALT), some with liver function (i.e. albumin) and some with disease linked to the biliary system (i.e. alkaline phosphatase). Includes: Albumin, Alkaline Phosphatase, Alanine Transaminase (ALT or SGPT), Aspartate Transaminase (AST or SGOT), Total Bilirubin, Total Protein, LDH, Total Globulin, Albumin/Globulin Ration and GGT.

Kidney: This basic metabolic panel is a group of blood tests that provides information about your body’s metabolism. This test is done to evaluate kidney function, blood acid/base balance, blood sugar levels. It includes Blood Urea Nitrogen (BUN), Creatinine, BUN/Creatinine Ratio, eGFR, and Uric Acid.

Glucose: Changes in blood glucose are a good indicator of metabolic function and can help detect diseases like diabetes mellitus. Since diabetes is the most common cause of kidney disease in adults, it is important to monitor for this disorder when evaluating kidney function.

Mineral and Bone: In addition to its mechanical functions, the bone is a reservoir for minerals (a “metabolic” function). The bone stores 99% of the body’s calcium and 85% of the phosphorus. It is very important to keep the blood level of calcium within a narrow range. If blood calcium gets too high or too low, the muscles and nerves will not function. In times of need, for example, during pregnancy, calcium can be removed from the bones. It includes: Total Iron, Calcium, and Phosphorus.

CK Total:  A creatine kinase (CPK) test may be used to detect inflammation of muscles (myositis) or serious muscle damage.

Serum Ferritin:  Composed of iron and protein, Ferritin is a storehouse for iron in the body. The ferritin test is ordered to assess a person’s iron stores in the body. The test is sometimes ordered along with an iron test and a TIBC to detect the presence and severity of iron deficiency or iron overload. In the early stages of anemia, the iron levels may be normal but the stored iron is being depleted and the ferritin level decreases. In iron overload, the ferritin level increases.

Sedimentation Rate, Modified Westergreen:  An indirect measure of the degree of inflammation present in the body. It is used to screen for inflammation, cancer, and infection. A high sed rate is found in a wide variety of infectious, inflammatory, and malignant diseases – the presence of an abnormality which needs further evaluation.

Protein Electrophoresis, Serum with Interpretation:  The serum protein electrophoresis (SPEP) test measures specific proteins in the blood to help identify some diseases. Proteins are substances made up of smaller building blocks called amino acids. Proteins carry a positive or a negative electrical charge, and they move in fluid when placed in an electrical field. Serum protein electrophoresis uses an electrical field to separate the proteins in the blood serum into groups of similar size, shape, and charge.

Additional tests that may be ordered if warranted from the initial blood panel:

CK (CPK) Isoenzymes: This test is done if a CPK test reveals that your total CPK level is elevated. CPK isoenzyme testing can help pinpoint the exact source of the damaged tissue.  CPK is made of three slightly different substances:

CPK-1 (also called CPK-BB) is found mostly in the brain and lungs CPK-2 (also called CPK-MB) is found mostly in the heart CPK-3 (also called CPK-MM) is found mostly in skeletal muscle

LDH isoenzymes: Measurement of LDH isoenzymes helps determine the location of any tissue damage.  LDH is found in many body tissues such as the heart, liver, kidney, skeletal muscle, brain, blood cells, and lungs.  LDH exists in 5 forms, which differ slightly in structure:

LDH-1 is found primarily in heart muscle and red blood cells. LDH-2 is concentrated in white blood cells. LDH-3 is highest in the lung. LDH-4 is highest in the kidney, placenta, and pancreas. LDH-5 is highest in the liver and skeletal muscle.

Hair Analysis – Toxic & Essential Elements:

Elements are the basic building blocks of all chemical compounds, and human exposure to them occurs both from natural and anthropogenic (caused by humans, eg air pollution) sources. Many elements are considered nutrients and are essential for the proper functioning of the body. These are generally divided between macrominerals such as calcium, magnesium, potassium, sodium and zinc, and trace minerals including selenium, iodine, boron and molybdenum.

Equally, there are a number of elements that are toxic to the human body, interfere with its functioning and undermine health—such as mercury, lead, cadmium, aluminum, and arsenic. These toxic metals have no known physiological functions. They can be toxic to organ systems and may disrupt the balance of essential nutrients.

Hair element analysis is a valuable and inexpensive screen for bodily excess, shortage or poor circulation of elements. It should not be considered a stand-alone investigative test for crucial element function, and should be used in combination with patient symptoms and other laboratory tests.

Hair is vulnerable to external elemental contamination by means of certain shampoos, bleaches, dyes, and curing or straightening treatments. Therefore, the first step in the interpretation of a hair element report is to rule out sources of external contamination.

Test Includes: Aluminum, Antimony, Arsenic, Barium, Beryllium, Bismuth, Cadmium, Lead, Mercury, Platinum, Thallium, Thorium, Uranium, Nickel, Silver, Tin, Titanium, Calcium, Magnesium, Sodium, Potassium, Copper, Zinc, Manganese, Chromium, Vanadium, Molybdenum, Boron, Iodine, Lithium, Phosphorus, Selenium, Strontium, Sulfur, Cobalt, Iron, Germanium, Rubidium, Zirconium