Functional Medicine Follow-Up


By Nancy Smorch

I just had my follow up visit with the Functional Medicine doctor and health coach.  I’m going through a little “mourning” process (again), as it was suggested I eliminate quite a few more foods from my diet.

I already don’t eat gluten and dairy, and in a further attempt to heal what is believed to be an inflamed or “leaky gut," I am to also eliminate a number of other things I love from my diet for 6 weeks.

These foods include corn (and corn products), soybeans (and soy products including tofu), peanuts (and peanut butter), alcohol, coffee, chocolate, eggs, beef, and pork.

The idea is that these are the foods that people tend to be allergic to or sensitive to, so by eliminating them for a certain period (6 weeks in this case), and then reintroducing them in a certain way, we can, first of all, eliminate anything that may be contributing to inflammation while my intestines heal.  And, second of all, we can gradually reintroduce foods, one at a time, and see if I experience any adverse reactions from them.

My intent is that I will be completely healed and I will be able to eat whatever I want.

She also suggested I start on a few supplements.  I figured I would need some - like a good probiotic (which she recommended).  I was already taking a couple of the supplements she recommended - fish oil and B vitamins. But what I liked was that she said these would most likely be temporary - this was just an "intervention" phase, and once the gut is healed, it would hopefully be maintained by food and lifestyle choices.

One of the other discoveries from the initial testing was that even though I eat a lot of fat, it appeared I'm not absorbing it properly, which could lead to adrenal and hormonal issues.

Finally, there is a supplement that she recommended that helps heal the intestinal lining called Glutagenics.  It contains glutamine, deglycyrrhizinized licorice (DGL), and aloe vera.  Together these support the integrity and optimal function of the gastrointestinal lining.  The glutamine provides a source of fuel and is a precursor for growth to the rapidly dividing cells of the intestinal lining, and is the most abundant amino acid found in muscle.  The aloe vera promotes a healthy mucous membrane in the intestine.

There were other findings and recommendations, but the bottom line appears that, of course, everything is connected, and it all starts with healing the intestinal tract.  I kind of knew that was the issue, but it was nice to work with someone that has some testing that can evaluate where I am and can retest and monitor progress and someone that will work with me and really listen to my concerns.

I’m glad I found them and will continue to keep you posted as to how I progress with the “protocol."