The Hashimoto's Doctor

Irritable Bowel Syndrome Natural Support

 

Irritable Bowel Syndrome Natural Support

Dr. Shook discusses irritable bowel syndrome natural support using the Functional Medicine approach

Scroll down to read the transcript of the video above.

Do you have IBS? Have you been looking for irritable bowel syndrome natural support options? We see patients with IBS, and get asked these questions on a daily basis. It should not surprise you when I tell you that irritable bowel syndrome is one of the most common reasons people visit their doctors. It is estimated that 60 to 70 million people have irritable bowel syndrome in the US. Unfortunately most primary care physicians are unaware and unequipped when it comes to treating IBS. Functional diagnostic medicine is a new way to look at irritable bowel syndrome and many other chronic health conditions that seeks to identify the drivers of disease processes so that we can get to the root cause of the problem and give you the best chance to truly be healthy.

When looking at irritable bowel syndrome natural support you have to consider why the person is having a digestive problem to begin with. Irritable bowel syndrome is a “functional bowel problem,” and that means that when a endoscope or colonoscopy is performed that then person’s intestinal tract looks normal. the real drivers of irritable bowel syndrome are generally classified as follows:

  1. Bacterial Imbalance (dysbiosis)
  2. Yeast Infections
  3. Parasites
  4. Low Stomach Acid
  5. Bacterial Infections

To get results with IBS, you have to understand these problems and how to address them naturally. Our practice is focused on the natural approach to chronic health conditions, IBS being one of those. We routinely see irritable bowel syndrome in a patients with autoimmune conditions due to the common occurrence of intestinal permeability, or “leaky gut” in patient’s with IBS. Leaky gut is a processes where the intestinal wall become porous, or “leaky” and lets protein, bacteria and particles of undigested food into the blood stream. Current literature shows us that “leaky gut” is a prerequisite to developing an autoimmune condition. IBS sets you up for leaky gut, and therefore autoimmunity.

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is something that needs to be taken seriously. Autoimmunity and the health of your intestinal tract depend on healthy digestion and all of the factors we discussed above. If you have IBS or a bowel disorder look around our site and learn more. If you need help with your IBS, and are interested in seeing if you would be a good fit for care in our office, look at the “patient application” page of our website.  If you have any questions please let us know.


 

Natural Support for Crohn’s Disease, Ulcerative Colitis and Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Irritable Bowel Syndrome Natural Treatment

Irritable Bowel Syndrome Natural Treatment

 [Start 0:00:00]

Hi, I’m Dr. Shook, and I’d like to welcome you to this presentation. Today, what I want to share with you is a new approach and new science to the natural support of inflammatory bowel diseases.

We’re going to talk about functional bowel problems such as IBS, but we’re really going to focus on the chronic conditions and the inflammatory conditions like Crohn’s, colitis, celiac disease. I mean we’re going to talk a little bit about gluten sensitivity. We’re going to talk about acid reflux and how a lot of these conditions are tied together because what you may have been told that we don’t know what’s causing your inflammatory bowel condition, that’s old science. What we know today is that we know that there are numerous drivers to these processes, and I’m going to talk about how we identify those drivers of the processes, how we approach them with natural approaches. What we know, we can improve your immune system function and we can decrease your symptoms naturally.

I want to welcome you and let’s go ahead and get started.

Why I work with these Conditions?

First, I’d like to talk about why I work with these conditions, and it really comes down to the fact that when I was approximately 13 years old, I developed gastrointestinal or digestive problems. At the time, being 13 I had no idea what was going on with me. I just knew that in my case I had constipation where I didn’t have a bowel movement for a week, and I felt horrible, so I got to the point where I asked as a young boy ‑ my mother I was fortunate enough to have her there, but I asked her for her guidance and advice.

She gave me what she knew to do. She gave me products that had Senna in them as a laxative. She told me to take Metamucil and gave me things to try and help me move my bowels. She gave me fiber supplements and a lot of things that we know today could be a big mistake with these problems. I’m going to talk about that. It seemed like over a period of time that my bowels did improve. I didn’t go to see a doctor formally for it, though it was ongoing and it was very disruptive those years of my teen years because I had to live and my life revolved around how I was going to do. Was I going to be constipated? Was I going to have diarrhea? Did I feel terrible and bloated? There are a lot of things that developed as a result of that.

Then as I got into my early 20s, it seemed to kind of get better. I don’t really know why and a lot of people that have inflammatory bowel problems or IBS, they have similar experiences. They don’t really have a rhyme or reason because you don’t understand what’s driving that process, why do you well sometimes and other times you don’t. There can be a lot of triggers and drivers to these processes, which we’re going to talk about and that was kind of my experience.

It seemed like it was better for a while, then it would get worse and I know that there were certain things that I consumed in my diet that would trigger it. You kind of learn as you go there are certain things that you stay away from, but what we know is that there are a lot of verifiable, scientifically backed reasons, that are backed by scientific literature, as to why these problems develop.

When I got into my late 20s, when I was in my doctoral program, I developed psoriasis, and I had eczema, and this is something I think about it now. I had eczema and I was diagnosed with eczema when I was in my teens, about the time that I was having these problems with my digestion. Eczema and psoriasis are cousins. They’re both related to your immune system, and that’s what we know. Psoriasis is an autoimmune condition psoriasis arthritic. This is when I had my first official autoimmune diagnosis. I was surprised.

I talked to my mother and asked her, “Why do I have psoriasis? I mean why do I have this rash on my elbows?”

I didn’t realize at the time that it was psoriasis, and she said, “Well, I hope you don’t have psoriasis.” That was the first time that it actually popped into my mind that this might be an autoimmune problem, and she proceeded to tell me her history of psoriasis, and I didn’t now this that my own mother has large plaque psoriasis, these large plaques all over her body.

I said, “Okay, I knew I had a family history. What do you about it?”

She started telling me about all these tar-based creams and things I could put on it. I said, “You know, this doesn’t make sense to me. Why do I have the problem in the first place? You want me to put a tar-based cream, which we know tar is carcinogenic. It’s cancer causing, and yes it might help with your symptoms, but why do I have this problem in the first place?”

[0:05:12] – Irritable Bowel Syndrome Natural Support

I go to a dermatologist, and the dermatologist wants to give me steroid creams, prednisone, an oral steroid to suppress the immune system and said, “I think it’s bad enough that you might have to take an immunosuppressant medication.”

My eyebrows kind of went up and I thought, “Why do I have this problem in the first place?”

She just told me that she didn’t know, that we don’t know why you have autoimmune problems, but all we know how to do is we can basically do is help you with the symptoms.

I’m going to tell you, that’s not good enough for me. That was not good enough for me because see I know something. I know going through my doctoral program that our body is self-healing, that our body works towards a state of balance. We call that homeostasis. Whenever you cut your hand, for example, you don’t have to do anything to it. The blood will clot the cut. It will start to scab and patch itself.

The immune system will come in and begin to kill any kind of bacteria and naturally clean the cut. Then it will begin to scar and repair itself, and in time, my cut will be healed because my body is working towards self-preservation. I said, “You know what, this makes no sense to me.”

I wasn’t hard on the dermatologist because she was doing what she knew to do. I said, “Okay, thank you for the information.” I started studying. Right then, I started researching autoimmunity, about the drivers of autoimmunity, and that’s when I found functional medicine, which is what we’re going to talk about is today is going to be primarily in this talk functional medicine, which looks at the drivers and causes of disease processes.

It’s an evidence-based way to figure out why you have the problems you have. This is what’s literally helped save my life and I think add years to my life because now I know how to manage my autoimmunity. This is critical for these inflammatory bowel conditions because they are autoimmune. They’re autoimmune, and you have to understand what drives the autoimmune process. You don’t necessarily have to be on all these medications, even though that’s the only thing your doctors know.

I had psoriasis and I started researching why. Then, it’s been about 10 years now, and last year, I’ve been working. I love to work. I love to help my patients. I love to educate people. That’s why I record videos like this so that people around the world can learn about these problems and can reach out. They can have an option. They can learn about these problems. What I want to do is inform people and educate you on the possibilities here. Last year, I worked a lot and I love to help people as I said. Last year, I started feeling tired and just worn out and I knew I needed to take some time off, but I decided to do some laboratory testing on myself.

What I learned was last year that I have an autoimmune condition called Hashimoto’s. That’s where your immune system attacks the thyroid gland. It is the most common autoimmune condition in women in the United States. There’s an estimated 27 million women that have this condition. It is a big problem, and I learned I had Hashimoto’s and that explained a lot about my fatigue and why I was so tired.

My autoimmunity was expanding. First, I had psoriasis. Now I have Hashimoto’s, and what a lot of people don’t know is that autoimmune conditions come in groups. It’s very likely that I have antibodies to more tissues than just my skin and my thyroid gland. It’s very, very likely that I have antibodies to other tissues. I want to share my story because that’s how I got to the point where I am now, where I got to the point where I studied, when I was in a doctoral program, I graduated with my doctoral degree.

I started studying functional medicine and I studied it for almost 7 years, sitting alongside of some forward-thinking medical doctors, osteopaths, chiropractors, naturopaths, and acupuncturists, doctors of acupuncture, sitting alongside a lot of forward-thinkers and doctors that are thinking alternatively rather than thinking that the pharmacological system is the only method. Because I can tell you all that systems is doing is covering up symptoms, and it’s not doing anything to address why you have the problems you, why his information is so important.

My Professional Background

I want to share with you a little bit of information about myself. I’ve always been into health, fitness, and exercise since I was about 12 or 13 years old. I did that because I was motivated due to seeing my family suffer with obesity and chronic health conditions.

[0:10:16]- Irritable Bowel Syndrome Natural Support

I said, “You know what I’m not going to be that way.” At the time, I thought it was all a personal choice. I thought that my family was just making bad choices, and I was determined and actually a little resentful of them. I said, “You know what, I’m not going to be like you. I’m going to take control of my health. I’m going to control my destiny.”

I think it did help me, but it was probably an unhealthy mindset, and I learned a lot since then and I feel differently about that. But it got me to where I am but I was always into health and fitness from a very young age. In my started in my undergraduate degree, I have a degree in business, which wasn’t really my passion. It was fitness, exercise, and health and I worked in the business world for 2 years, and then I decided to go back to school to get a doctoral degree. I went back to school and got my prerequisites for my pre-medicine program. I had to go back and take organic chemistry and college-level physics with labs. It was a very, very rigorous program, very rigorous classes, and then I decided I wanted to go into alternative medicine because I decided that the traditional medical model is not what I wanted because I believe that the body can be healthy.

My doctoral degree is a doctor of chiropractic, and I love to talk to people about that because what we do in our office is really not anything you would think of as chiropractic because it’s not spine-related. It’s actually nutrition and functional medicine. I’d love to talk to people about that because they don’t realize a lot of times that modern chiropractic degree is a very rigorous program. It’s a 4-year program, so I’ve had 8 years of school to be a doctor. That’s 4 years of medicine undergraduate and it’s 4 years of a very rigorous doctoral program with an internship and required board exams and continuing education, but people don’t realize that the doctor of chiropractic degree, that the entire philosophy behind chiropractic is basically how to get your body working better naturally, healthy without the use of drugs.

I had a fantastic education in biochemistry and endocrinology, in laboratory analysis and fluids, in neuroanatomy, in anatomy, in histology. You just name it. I mean the first 2 years were very rigorous. We had gross anatomy and dissection where we worked with cadavers. We had a fantastic education, fantastic education with lots of nutrition and biochemistry – which did you know that the current medical programs don’t have any, not one single hour of nutrition, not one single hour of nutrition. It blew me away to learn that. I mean my doctoral degree was fantastic to prepare me to go into this type of work, to help people with chronic inflammatory conditions.

What I do is I graduated. Then I started attending, but even before I graduated, post-graduate training in functional diagnostic medicine, in functional medicine, in integrative medicine, which looked at bringing Western and Eastern medicines together and merging this alternative with the current medical model and kind of blending them as much as we can to get the best possible results with the most natural approach possible.

I started studying, and I’m board certified in integrative medicine now. I have hundreds of hours in a board diplomate program towards a diplomate through the American Board of Nutrition, which is a diplomate program available to medical doctors, naturopaths, and chiropractors. A lot of different practitioners. I studied hundreds of hours under one of the leading thyroid doctors in the world. He is the leading thyroid doctor in the world. His name is Dr. Datis Kharrazian. He has written books and he lectures for the Institute for Functional Medicine and a lot of other fantastic organizations that teach functional medicine.

I’ve taken hundreds of hours of classes. I do training on top of training. Every month, I take one or two classes, and it’s because I wanted to get better results, and I want to help myself, I want to help my family, and I want to help my patients and the world because this information can change your life.

Then most recently something that’s notable is something I’ve been training in genetics. I’ve been training in really looking at someone’s genes and looking to see if they have something called polymorphisms. We call them single nucleotide polymorphisms. These polymorphisms, they’re changes in your genetics that can cause you to not make enzymes, which are things that allow chemical processes in your body to occur.

[0:15:04]- Irritable Bowel Syndrome Natural Support

You may make too many of the enzymes. You may not make enough of the enzymes. What that can do is it can cause you to have problems with your biochemistry because what we know from functional medicine is that we can help people naturally, but some people don’t respond, so why doesn’t everyone respond the same? What we’re finding is that it’s the genetic issues. With the genetic problems, if we identify them, a lot of times, we can come up with a strategy to help us work around them, so that’s the future of customized medicine, customized natural medicine. That’s where I’m really focusing my studies now because it applies directly to me. I have single nucleotide polymorphisms. I have vitamin D receptor polymorphism, and I also have issues with the MTHFR gene. I’ve got a lot of issues that are going on.

Then I’m studying functional neurology, which is a branch of neurology that works and focuses on working with the brain and the brain systemic control and function of your body. I’m not going to get into that too much because we have a lot to cover.

What you are going to learn…

What you’re going to learn in this presentation is I’m going to talk about digestive disorders. I’m going to talk about why they occur. We’re going to talk a lot about “why.” Why do I have this problem? Why does it occur? We’re going to talk about why you may or may not get better with the treatments that you’re currently going through and even if you’re using alternative medicine, why you may not get better. We’re going to talk about the causes, which is something you’ve got to learn, you’ve got to understand.

What I’m going to do is really try to help you to get an understanding of when we treat someone from a functional medicine perspective, how it is a much different approach than treating a diagnosis and your symptoms because we’re not trying to just focus on symptoms. If you treat the root cause of these problems, the symptoms get better. You actually help the person to achieve health rather than just suppressing their body and their natural function, so that you take away symptom. That doesn’t address the underlying drivers or causes of the disease process.

If we do this correctly, I’m going to show you natural ways to support and nourish your digestive tract that will allow your body to heal and regain health naturally. I mean isn’t that the ultimate goal? Don’t you want to be healthy and not have to take all these medications? For me, that just doesn’t make any sense to take a lot of medications that are just suppressing symptoms. It just makes no sense. It’s the current medical model that we have, and it’s good to have those things available as tools if that’s our last resort, but if anything, you can use the strategies and things that I’m going to talk about. You’ve got to identify why you have the problem, and that’s not impossible at all. As a matter of fact, what we’re going to talk about is literature and the stuff that we’re going to talk about is we’re talking research and knowledge that’s less than 10 years old.

Some of the stuff I’m going to talk about was new this year. This is why your doctors don’t know this stuff because for them in the traditional medical practice, it takes 15 to 20 years for things to get into their curriculum that they can understand. Then when it’s not a drug-based treatment and it’s not a surgically based treatment, are they going to know about it? Think about that. Why would they? That’s not in their model of healthcare. That’s not in their toolbox, so why would they know about it?

We’re going to talk about these inflammatory bowel diseases. Irritable bowel syndrome, for example, it has a lot of different symptoms and there is no evidence for it. It’s basically a diagnosis of exclusion. They look at everything and they say, “I’ve got a spastic colon. I’ve got these issues.”

They’re like, “Well, we don’t see anything wrong, so you must have irritable bowel. Here, take some medication.” There is no identification of the driver. I’m telling you if you have irritable bowel syndrome, there are a lot of drivers that we’re going to talk about.

Crohn’s disease. It’s an autoimmune disease of the digestive tract that can happen anywhere along the tract. It can happen in the small intestine, in the large intestine, and it can affect any layer of the digestive tract. It’s different from ulcerative colitis in that ulcerative colitis attacks the large intestine, and it attacks the lining. It doesn’t attack some of the deeper layers. They’re both autoimmune.

We’re going to talk a little bit about celiac disease and sprue, which is an autoimmune attack against the small intestine, and is triggered by gluten sensitivity. It’s actually gluten allergy.

Acid reflux and GERD, which is basically reflux, we’re going to talk about that a little bit because it’s important in the context of your entire digestive tract. A lot of people think that because you have heartburn, you have too much stomach acid. That is not true. Actually most people have reflux because they don’t have enough stomach acid, and the question you have to ask yourself is “why” because there are a lot of different drivers of reflux. You could have bacterial infections. You could have pernicious anemia where it’s an autoimmune attack against some of the cells that manufacture acid.

Those all have consequences to your digestion and to the rest of the health of your colon because if you don’t have adequate acidity, then when your food leaves your stomach and goes into your small intestine, your colon, you cannot have normal enzyme release from your gallbladder and your pancreas. You can’t have the protective effects of the acid that will help to kill any type of bacteria or parasites that maybe in your food and then those things can populate your GI tract and cause chronic inflammation. These are critical things.

[0:20:20]- Irritable Bowel Syndrome Natural Support

Your doctors are not looking at these drivers because they are not educated on this. I just almost plead to my patients, “You have got to consider what’s causing your problem, and if your doctors aren’t willing to help you identify that, then you got the wrong doctor.”

Inflammation in Inflammatory Bowel Conditions

These inflammatory bowel conditions, with all of them, inflammation is present. With all of them, inflammation is present, so why do you have inflammation? Inflammation in your bowels, your intestinal tract, it leads to systemic full-body inflammation because when they’re inflamed, inflammatory chemicals circulate through the bloodstream. Anytime you have inflammation in one area of your body, you have it systematically, and the bowels are a very, very common cause of inflammation.

This next statement, I want you to tell me if this is not the truth because anyone that has any of these inflammatory bowel conditions, they know this to be true. I know this to be true. “Inflammation in your bowels results in inflammation in your brain.” Ask anyone that has Crohn’s, colitis, irritable bowel syndrome, or that has celiac or sprue, ask them if when they have a lot of digestive upset, if they don’t have problems with like brain fog or clarity of thought if their thought processes aren’t slowed.

The reason for that is because that systemic inflammation that’s created becomes so much and so great that it circulates through your body. It circulates through your bloodstream and it crosses the blood brain barrier. That inflammation gets into the brain itself and that causes problems with your neuron or your brain chemistry. Your thought processes become clouded and slower. That inflammation is not good for brain health long term. That can cause neuronal degeneration, those neurons or the nerve cells of your brain. That’s not what you want. You don’t want something that leads to brain atrophy and poor neuron health. Your gut is critically important at having and keeping your keeping your brain healthy. We know there’s a gut-brain connection. It’s very, very important.

The Most Important Question

The most important question that you have to ask and that you need to be asking every time you talk to your doctor or that you’re considering taking a medication, “What does this medication do and what is my problem? How is it helping or affecting my body?” Understand why. It’s not complicated. You don’t have to be a doctor to understand that a medication, a steroid is just suppressing inflammation. But why do you have inflammation in the first place is the question you need to ask.

You need to ask why, and you need to ask why. If your doctor gets offended because you’re asking them why, then you got the wrong doctor. They need to help you. They need to be working with you to help save your life, not dictating care to you. If they don’t have time or they can’t explain to you why they’re doing what they’re doing in layperson’s terms that you can understand, you have the wrong doctor.

Does the current medical approach make any sense to you?

Does the current medical approach make any sense to you to these inflammatory conditions? Why, the reason why you have these problems is not something that’s answered by most physicians because guess what it doesn’t change their treatment plan because their approach to these problems is limited. Their toolbox is limited. If it has to do with some kind of underlying infection or bacterial problem or parasite, that’s not really in their toolbox, and those are things that they don’t regularly diagnose and work up. Some do, but most don’t.

They assume once you have an autoimmune condition like Crohn’s or colitis that these drivers, these processes are irrelevant and our focus needs to be on the immune system or on the surgery. It’s ludicrous. It’s ridiculous. You got to look at the drivers of the process, and then if those things are appropriate, okay, but you’ve got to address why. You’ve got to help the person nourish their body back to health, so that they have a chance to be healthy. You can’t neglect the fact that they’re unhealthy and then just treat a disease process. The disease process is occurring because they’re unhealthy.

What they’re going to do is they’re going to give you medications to either shut something down or turn something off. Listen, what did I tell you to begin with? Your body is working towards a state of health, always. Your body makes no mistakes. It is working towards being healthy. When you shut down what it’s doing, it’s creating inflammation. It’s doing these things to protect itself. You have to understand that when you shut down what the body is doing, you’re going against its innate, it’s inborn intelligence.

[0:25:17]- Irritable Bowel Syndrome Natural Support

We don’t even understand the body. We don’t understand how it creates life. We don’t understand a lot of these physiological processes, so when you go, when you start shutting them down and you work against it rather than work with it, you are contradicting your body’s natural abilities to heal.

Medical Management

This medical management is typically steroids, a lot of half-powered steroids to suppress your system, to squash your immune response, or they want to cut out your colon. They want to cut out a part of it. But what happens, what happens is they cut out part of your colon and only to have to have a future surgery because they’re not addressing the process. Because the process is not addressed, it progresses to another part of the colon and then you have to have another surgery, and another surgery.

Why is the process occurring? These things continue to happen with these surgeries and having to continually take these medications because the cause of the condition, the inflammation, the autoimmunity is not being addressed. The “why” is not being addressed.

The Functional Medicine Approach to Inflammatory Bowel Diseases

The functional medicine approach to these inflammatory conditions and to IBS as well is to remove the triggers of the immune disease, remove the triggers of the inflammation, decreasing that inflammation, allowing the body to heal, and you got to balance the immune response.

The Two Sides of the Immune System

With your immune system, you have two different sides to your immune system. You got this thing called the TH1 and the TH2 system. They are two different sides. We’re going to talk about those right now.

The immune system when you think about this, your immune system, if you’re going to work with the immune system, you have to know how it works. If I was a mechanic, I better know how a car works if I’m going to fix a car. I better understand the pieces of the car. You have to know how it works if you want to know to fix it when it breaks. Let’s talk about the basics of how it works, and guess what folks, it’s not that complicated.

You have two parts of the immune system. You have barrier systems that keep things that shouldn’t be in your body out, and then you have blood cells, and I’m going to talk about theses in different parts

But your barrier systems, there are four barrier systems ‑ your skin, your blood brain barrier, your lung barrier, and your GI barrier. Your gastrointestinal barrier, keeps things in the GI tract that should not be in your bloodstreams. If that barrier breaks down or any of these barriers get down and things get into your bloodstream that shouldn’t be there, and that triggers your immune system.

Let’s look at the white blood cells. Now what we’re going to do is we’re going to talk about the humoral immunity, the immune system that’s inside your body, of your blood, so let’s talk about your immune system primarily of the different blood cells.

Basically remember I said you have two different sides to your immune system. You have the TH1 system, which is right here. They are these blood cells that whenever you cut your hand, they go there immediately and they kill any type of bacteria or anything that’s there. It forms the pus around the splinter. They go and they’re immediate response. They go, and they form and they kill things immediately.

Then this side of the immune system is the TH2 system. It’s the delayed response. It happens up to 3 days later. It goes around, and they’re these blood cells that look for bad, basically look for infections or things that are foreign to your body that shouldn’t be there and they put these sticky notes all over it, and say, “Hey, I want the rest of the immune cells to come and kill this stuff.” This happens usually it’s about 3 days later. It tags the invaders and it’s your immune system memory.

Remember: TH1 and TH2, these guys have to be in balance. Whenever you have an infection or you get sick, they shift and your body will stimulate one side. One side is stimulated and it goes and kills things. When you’re no longer sick, you longer have an infection, it comes back and it’s back in balance. That’s how normally it should work. When it’s well-regulated, these guys are kind of like a seesaw here, they’re well-balanced, well-regulated.

Right at the center of these systems is something called the TH3 system, and the TH3 system what it does when it’s normally functioning, it helps to produce things called regulatory T cells. These are immune system cells that go out and they stimulate each side here and they balance it. Without normal regulatory T cells, these things can be kind of haywire and they can shift inappropriately. If they shift inappropriately, they’ll stimulate tissue destruction, and they do that because whenever they shift, it stimulates the TH17 system. All you need to know is that when these things are out of balance, the TH17 system is activated and it causes tissue destruction and that’s where you have your autoimmune symptoms and damage and flare-up.

[0:30:29]- Irritable Bowel Syndrome Natural Support

Autoimmunity=Imbalance

Autoimmunity ‑ when you’re autoimmune, it means that you have imbalance in this TH1 and TH2 system. When your body attacks itself, this is what happens. You have a shift of one side that will cause you to have an overly stimulated immune system that once you’re autoimmune and the triggers for autoimmunity are there, your immune system will attack your own body.

Balancing the Immune System

How do we balance this immune system? When this thing is shifted, I’m having tissue destruction. It’s flaring up my colon. It’s flaring up my colitis. How do I get it back in balance?

Categories of Causes of Loss of Normal Body and Immune System Regulation

Well you have to understand the things that cause it to loss balance. These, folks, these are the triggers of your autoimmunity. These are the things that trigger it, that cause it to flare up. These are the things that we have to identify if you want to naturally help your body calm down that immune response and put yourself into remission. See, once you’re autoimmune, you’re always autoimmune. What you can do is kind of like a bright light that’s controlled by a dimmer switch. You can turn that dimmer switch all the way down so the light is off, but it’s not pushed off. It’s just dim so far that you have no symptoms, no signs at all of any autoimmunity.

Your autoimmunity is completely in remission whereas if you were seen by a doctor and you didn’t tell them that you had it, they would say I don’t see anything wrong with you. That is the goal. That’s where I am. That’s where I am with my Hashimoto’s. That’s where I am with my psoriasis. That’s where you can be if we identify these triggers and we help your body nurture and heal itself and heal your barrier systems, remove all the things that are bad, kill the stuff if there’s something there that’s triggering your immune response. We can get you back. We work with you to nurture your body to health. That takes time, but we can put this thing into remission and keep it there. That’s the future.

There are two different categories of things that can cause your immune system to be shifted. They are called dysregulators, things that cause you to loss that balance, or active antigens – these are things that your body is constantly trying to kill. Remember if your body is trying to kill something, it will be shifted. It will shift your immune system so one side is dominant and that allows you to increase your amount of a certain type of immune system cell that can go out and kill things. That’s how your body normally works, but what happens is if you lose regulation, you can have an inappropriate response, and your immune system can attack and destroy your own tissues.

Dysregulators. These are dysregulators. Starting here, I’ll tell you as we go, but you can look up here in the corner where it says dysregulators. These are things that cause you to loss the balance. Let’s talk about this.

(1) Inflammation from poor diet. Does that make you hungry? Listen. I understand it. This is the standard American diet here. This is terrible for you because here’s why. These types of foods are fried and have all these processed meats and everything else on them, these are full of omega-6 fats.

We’ve all heard of these fats – the omega-3s, the omega-6s, the omega-9s. What we know is that omega-6, when you have a lot more omega-6s in your body than you have omega-3s, your ratio of omega-6s is higher and that puts you in an inflammatory state. You do not want to be in an inflammatory state. Proinflammatory state will cause you to dysregulate and lose regulation of your immune system. Listen, if you take oil that says 3-6-9 blend or has any omega-6s or omega-9s, do not take those. You’re getting too many omega-6s in your diet. Anyway, you need to be taking omega-3s. Take omega-3s.

If any of you ever heard about the prehistoric man that they found frozen in ice – I can’t remember if it was Nepal or wherever. It was a few years ago. What they did was they’ve done studies on this guy, and what they found when they did biopsies and they looked at his ratios of fats in his body, they found that he was 1:1, one omega-3 to one omega-6. He was in balance. That’s the ideal. We believe that’s the ideal ratio.

Do you know what the standard American ratio is? Twenty-five omega-6s to one omega-3 up to even higher than 50:1. I’m telling you when you have that kind of ratio, you feel horrible. You will lose immune system regulation, and it will trigger autoimmunity and it will cause you to be in a proinflammatory state. These are some of the things that we look at very first because they’re the easiest things that we can change and improve.

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(2) Bad blood sugar and stress. Blood sugar regulation and stress. Here’s the thing: when your blood sugar spikes and dips, it causes dysregulation of hormones. You will not have normal hormone function. You will not have normal neurotransmitter or brain chemistry function. It stimulates the production of cortisol, a stress hormone. Stress hormones thin your barrier systems. It thins all these barrier systems I talked about and makes them permeable or leaky. Leaky gut is something you may have heard of. We call it intestinal permeability. Intestinal permeability is how it’s referenced in the literature, but to the layperson, it’s called leaky gut. It means your GI tract lets proteins, and bacteria, and things in your bloodstream that shouldn’t be there. Those things trigger your immune system to have an immune response. We’re going to talk about those in the next section, but these are the things that we have to balance and regulate.

(3) Hormone imbalances. Hormone imbalances if you have elevated insulin or elevated cortisol. Cortisol as I said just thins the barrier systems where you have surges in estrogen, it would trigger and shift your TH1 and TH2 immune system. We know that there are things that do this. We understand a lot of the drivers of these problems, and we can look at these with the right testing and figure out where you are, what your drivers of this process are, and help you to work to reverse it and unwind it.

(4) Neurological imbalances. You think, “What? Neurological imbalance? How does that cause my immune system to go into dysregulation? What’s an immune imbalance?”

Consider this: have you ever heard of the fight-or-flight system or the rest-and-digest system? Those are two different sides of your autonomic nervous system. You have a voluntary nervous system that lets me contract and move my hand. That’s voluntary. I can speak and talk. These are all voluntary things; I think about it, it happens.

But you have an involuntary side that’s called autonomic nervous system, and that autonomic is completely involuntary. See it has two divisions. One is the ‑ what you see here – sympathetic. We call that the fight-or-flight system. You get scared, that’s triggered. Then there’s another side of the system called the parasympathetic and that’s means that’s your rest and digest. All these involuntary functions that your body synchronizes and controls without you thinking about it happen through that system.

Neurologically, you can have an imbalance there. That imbalance occurs whenever you have these stress responses or due to your modern-day lifestyle. There are a number, number of different mechanisms that cause you to be stuck in like a fight-or-flight mode. I mean some of the things that can trigger that are not necessarily – but everything has a hormonal component to it. But chronic stress, marriage difficulties, difficulties with relationships, money, work, the modern lifestyle around us, traffic, news – all these things that cause you to be in a constant state of guarding and of stress, those are things that will cause the sympathetic system to always be on guard, to be wound-up. That is not good because that pushes your cortisol production, that causes a lot of problems with digestion.

Do you know that your autonomic nervous system, that rest-and-digest side, which is the parasympathetic, there’s a nerve that leaves your brainstem and it goes to your digestive tract. It’s called the vagus nerve. That vagus nerve sometimes we can do things to help with gut function that maybe aren’t necessarily related to foods or related to infections, or related to some of these things we’re talking about. Maybe we can give you some actually brain-based exercises that may sound kind of like foreign to you like brain-based exercises, what is that?

Well, how many times do you have gut problems where your gut is just kind of spastic and twisting or moving? We know that how your gut moves, that motility that’s controlled by your brain. That’s controlled by a nerve called the vagus nerve. That vagus nerve, what you have to do is you can do things to actually stimulate that vagus nerve to have a more appropriate stimulation of your gastrointestinal tract. Those are the things that we can do. We do that with brain-based exercises like gargling, like singing out loud. That stimulates the pontomedullary area of your brainstem, the lower part of your brainstem where that vagus nerve comes from, where it originates. I don’t want to get into that too much because I don’t have time to do a full lecture on that, but those are things that we can do. Those are not things like out there esoteric stuff. This is neurology. We know this works. We know these things can help.

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You have to have someone that’s going to give you and consider your whole picture. If you’re just looking at the immune system and you think your prednisone or another medication like that just to squash the immune system, and immunosuppressant is the only thing you have available, then you’re not getting the whole picture. Your doctors mean well. They want to help you but they don’t understand because they haven’t trained in functional medicine, and maybe of them haven’t gotten through this themselves. When you go through something yourself, you would do anything you can to be healthy.

(5) Poor absorption of fat. Poor absorption of fat is another thing that causes dysregulation. We lose regulation of our immune system if we don’t have normal fat absorption. You know that all of your fat-soluble vitamins means they’re absorbed with fat are A, D, E, and K. Vitamin D is critical for autoimmunity. Vitamin K is critical for normal function. All of those fat-soluble vitamins are absolutely critical. A lot of us with inflammatory bowel conditions have poor absorption because our gut is inflamed, so it doesn’t absorb well.

We look for absorption of fat because vitamin D helps to regulate the immune system. It helps to produce those regulatory T cells to balance out the immune system. It will cause dysregulation if you don’t absorb fat. All of your hormones are dependent upon cholesterol. You have to have cholesterol to make testosterone and estrogen. This is critical. We look at this, and we work naturally to help you fix these problems.

(6) Methylation Problems and genetic SNP. Okay, the last dysregulator. If you have the genetic problems I was referring to, they can cause you to have biochemical problems where you’re not getting breakdown or you’re not getting the creation of certain chemicals and hormones of biochemistry and nutrients that you need. This can be very, very important, so we can do genetic testing and some advanced laboratory testing to look at this and determine if this is part of your driver of the process.

Those are the things that cause you to lose regulation.

Active Antigens. Now what we’re going to talk about are things that cause your body to be constantly stimulated or trying to kill something. These are things that are called antigens. Antigens are things that your immune system is trying to kill or things that’s formed. It’s trying to get rid of it or get out of your body because it thinks it would harm you.

(1) Food sensitivities. The number 1 thing is food sensitivities…food sensitivities. These food sensitivities are not allergic reactions like true anaphylactic reactions where your throat or your tongue will swell. Those are different. Those are IgE. That’s a type of antibody response. These are different types of responses. These are IgG and IgE. That’s a type of an immune response that I’m going to talk to you about.

What happens with food sensitivities is you eat something and you don’t even know that you have any kind of sensitivity to it. It’s a food sensitivity. Food sensitivity will cause low-grade inflammation that will cause inflammation of your GI tract, that will cause it to thin and become permeable or leaky, that will allow proteins, bacteria, and things in your digestive tract to leak into the bloodstream. That leaking into the bloodstream has to be fixed. It has to be fixed. It causes autoimmunity. We know that leaky gut, which is what that permeability is called, anything that causes GI inflammation, whether it be food sensitivities or any of the other things that we’re going to talk about in this particular section will cause you to have leaking of proteins into the bloodstream.

Those proteins will trigger an immune response. The immune system will try to destroy those proteins because they’re foreign. What your immune system will do is circulate and look – remember that TH2 system I said that puts sticky notes on everything that’s foreign? It circulates throughout your bloodstream looking for those foreign proteins that have leaked in. Guess what? Some of your own tissue, some of your body’s tissues – let’s just say we’re talking about Crohn’s or colitis, they’re autoimmune. Let’s say that your GI tract, part of the lining of your colon or your small intestine looks like that protein that leaked into the bloodstream. Your immune system will mistakenly tag your colon or part of your tissues as foreign, and once it’s tagged, it’s foreign. Your immune system then starts to attack it, and there you have it. You’re now autoimmune. Your body has lost self-tolerance. It no longer identifies your colon as you, and every time you consume or you get something into your bloodstream that triggers that immune response, your colon gets attacked, too.

Do you understand why it’s so important to identify what’s causing these process because you can never be free of the problem unless you know why you have the problem. Food sensitivity is the number 1 place where we start since it’s the easiest thing to make a difference with. I’m going to talk about some of the testing that we do for this. Active antigens, we’re still on these things that your body is trying to kill.

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(2) Hidden chronic infections. Hidden chronic infections, this is the next area because this is very, very common and this is very, very commonly missed. What we see is that H. pylori, this bacteria. H. pylori is a bacteria that will typically live in the stomach. A lot of people know about it because it can cause ulcers. It’s extremely common. It is not normal to have it in your GI tract no matter what anyone tells you.

It is associated with a lot of problems. It burrows into the stomach wall. It lowers your production of acidity. It can lead to acid reflux-like symptoms. Even though it lowers the stomach acidity, it will cause your food to sit in your stomach longer than it should be there. It will putrefy the food well as it digests and you will regurgitate it into your esophagus and it will cause burning.

The reality of the situation is that the stomach acidity is lower than it should be, so that’s low acid, but it still burns because it’s still acid. Then also what happens is your stomach, to open up at the bottom and let the food into the small intestine, there has to be enough acidity. These things shut down that acidity and the food just sits there longer and longer. When the food gets into the small intestine, it doesn’t have as much acid content.

What happens at that point is your gallbladder and your pancreas will sit right there as it comes through into the small intestine. They’re not stimulated strongly because they require acid to be stimulated, to release enzymes into the food so that you digest it, so that you break down the fats, the bile salts, break down the fats and emulsify the fats, so that the nutrients can be absorbed in your small intestine. It sets you up for an entire cascade of poor digestion from the small intestine to the colon, the entire process. H. pylori is a big deal, so we test for it.

Dysbiosis ‑ that means an overgrowth of bad bacteria. Here is what you need to know about bacteria, and this is as simple as I can put it: when you have bad bacteria, the bad bacteria in your gut eat vitamins, and nutrients, and things that you need. Their byproduct or what they make ‑ or what I tell people in a very simple term is they eat good stuff that you need, they take it from you. Then they poop or they make bad stuff and they leave the bad stuff in your gut. That’s a really simplified way to say it, but it’s very, very simple. I mean it’s the easiest way to get the point across.

The good bacteria in your gut that you need there what they do is they eat bad stuff and their byproduct or what they poop is good stuff – vitamins and nutrients, things that you need. Dysbiosis – have you ever heard of SIBO, small intestinal bacterial overgrowth? That’s when this bacteria moves into your small intestine where it shouldn’t be and it happens when the colon is filled with gas. This is one of the ways. It’s filled with gas, and it bloats up. What it does is your ileocecal valve, which sits where the small intestine joins with the colon right there. It’s near your appendix. It’s on the bottom right-hand quadrant of your abdomen. It sits right there.

When your colon becomes full of air, it blows that ileocecal valve open and bacteria works its way up into the small intestine that shouldn’t be there. Then when you eat food, that bacteria feed off it and ferment and create gases. Those gases bloat. You feel like you’re pregnant after you eat. That’s small intestinal bacterial overgrowth. You have to take care of that or you’re going to have inflammation and chronic inflammation, chronic digestive problems, small intestinal inflammation. You’re sitting yourself up for autoimmunity if you’re not already autoimmune. The thing is none of these problems come by themselves. I’ve never seen anyone that has just one problem. They always have a combination of these issues when we’re talking about.

Parasites – how many people have had parasites? Not many people know that they have a parasite. I mean very, very, very few people have been tested. What we do is we know that parasites are common. Have you ever eaten a salad? Okay. Well, those salads are raised somewhere, and those salads are typically raised in dirt. They are animals that can urinate, defecate. Stuff can be in the soil, fertilizer. Parasites are real things. Do you ever go swimming in a lake? Do you ever swim in a swimming pool? You can get parasites.

We check for parasites because guess what parasites do? They live in your body, and your immune system knows that they’re there, so it’s constantly trying to kill them, but a lot of times your immune system can’t do it on its own, so that will cause you to have a shift in your immune system where you’re constantly trying to kill these things.

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The same thing with Candida or yeast, which is a major, major, major problem with people. They have an overgrowth of yeast in their colon, and that’s a chronic infection that your immune system tries to kill that creates a shift in the dominance, and it just constantly stays elevated, and then your autoimmunity you can never get it under control. You got to kill these hidden infections.

(3) Environmental toxins. More active antigens, things that your body tries to kill or eliminate. All of these environmental compounds, all of these environmental compounds. I’m not going to go into these you can read them here, but all of these things are environmental. They get into your body and your body sees them as foreign and it can create a shift in your immune system where it doesn’t know what to do with it, and that shift creates an immune response. It can trigger your autoimmunity to flare and become worse and even trigger autoimmunity.

These are things that we have to consider because if we find that you’re getting exposed to bisphenol-A, BPA, we have to figure out where you’re getting that from. Are you drinking out of plastic bottles? If you are right now, listen to me, if you are drinking out of plastic bottles, stop drinking out of plastic. Drink out of glass or stainless steel.

There are very long names for these things. Are you getting exposed to a flame retardant? Because we know flame retardants cause problems with your immune system. All of these chemicals do. You would think to yourself, “Where am I getting exposed to flame retardant?” Do you have carpet in your house? Guess what? It very, very likely has flame retardant, so it doesn’t burn as fast. Do you have fabric in your car, on your car seats? Do you have fabric on any of the furniture in your house? Guess what those fabrics are treated with? Flame retardants, yeah.

Every time you sit on there and you think that you’re sitting there with your grandkids and they’re all in the carpet playing around, you think about the stuff that’s getting into your body. This is why we have a lot of reforms and a lot of things that need to be changed in big business because we’re exposing ourselves to poisons, and we’re mandating that a lot of the stuff be done. We need to find better ways because it’s killing us. It’s making us sick.

(4) Leaky gut (intestinal permeability). I’ve already explained to you leaky gut that the gut wall becomes permeable due to inflammation. Any of the things that we’ve just talked about can cause intestinal tract permeability, and chronic permeability that lets things to leak in and stimulate the immune response that can trigger autoimmunity.

Here’s what the scientific literature tells us. You see that colander? That’s kind of like what happens when your gut is leaky. Stuff flows into it and instead of it being a solid sealed surface that doesn’t let anything through, you just have bacteria and all these things that are bigger and larger molecules that shouldn’t be in your bloodstream, they just pour through into the bloodstream, and your body doesn’t know what to do with it. That’s the same thing that happens here.

What the scientific literature tell us now, this is current, this is current literature. This is the contemporary literature today that leaky gut syndrome or intestinal permeability is a prerequisite, meaning it is required to have an autoimmune disease. You have to have to have that to develop an autoimmune disease, and you don’t know that you have this.

We can actually do testing. We can do testing to see if you have antibodies to occludin/zonulin and if you have lipopolysaccharides in your bloodstream. Using advanced laboratory testing, we can tell you if you have that for sure.

How do you know if you have these triggers?

How do you know if you have these triggers? How do you know? Have you had need this kind of workup done? Some people have a little bit of it, but most people haven’t had 90 percent of what I’m going to talk about. How do you know? You do the right tests. You do the right tests. You go to the right doctor. You get the right analysis. You figure out what’s going on so you can heal your body like really heal it and not just cover up the symptoms. Get your health back.

Where to start

How do you know where to start?

(1) Do the right testing. What you do is the first thing that we do is we do the right testing, and these are some of the things that we can do. We do comprehensive metabolic panels on people. We look at their metabolism inside and out, through a blood draw. We look at the largest panel I guarantee that you’ve ever had because it gives us information on what to do next.

You get adrenal testing. Sometimes we will check the adrenal gland function because remember I said cortisol, elevated or low cortisol, chronically low, can thin those barrier systems. We know that thin intestinal lining creates leaky gut and leaky gut triggers immune system flare-up and autoimmunity. Yes, we want to know about cortisol. Yes, we want to know about hormones because we can also through the same testing panel, we can get your male and female sex hormones, testosterone and estrogen, because estrogen and testosterone surges and dips can cause you to have a shift in the immune system, too. We want to look at those. We want to look at how they’re being metabolized. We’re going to look at their levels.

We want to look at genetic testing for those single nucleotide polymorphisms or the SNPs. We want to do testing to determine if you have nutritional deficiencies because you know how many people are deficient in magnesium and zinc? Those are required in so many chemical processes in your body and simple things like that can help to really improve your function, so yeah we look for those basic things.

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We look for problems with methylation, which is a process of detoxification. These chemical processes of your body, they’re absolutely critical. Now we look at the methylation in combination with the genetic SNPs so that we can get a very clear picture on what’s happening with enzymes and your body’s ability to make them.

We want to see if there are bacteria, parasites, or fungi that are growing in your body because remember those are chronic inflammatory triggers. Those are really, really important with ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s, and IBS.

We look at environmental and chemical triggers. We’re going to look at those things, we can do those through some advanced immunological testing that’s the best in the world. We work with labs that have developed testing specifically for functional medicine because they know that we’re on the cutting-edge of functional medicine. They know that functional medicine is the future of health and to get people healthy and really have a true quality of life and to get your life back, you have to do functional medicine.

We look for dietary triggers and food sensitivities. When we look at them, we can look at very expanded panels to tell you if you have cross-reactivity, if foods that you’re eating are triggering your immune system.

Important Advance in Testing: Identifying Genetic SNPs

We are going to do in a lot of cases, we’ll do advanced genetic testing. You know what if want to get better, we’re going to do the test. I want you to get better, and I want you to get better quick. I don’t want to take forever. I want you to get better so we can get you healthy. We based this on genetic testing. We based what we do on genetic testing. We can do organic acid tests. We can do methylation panels to see into what’s happening with your DNA and if it’s contributing to your problems, and a lot of times it is. We can really tweak and improve what we do with you.

A lot of patients come to us now. “Hey, I’ve had a lot o testing. My labs look great, but I got this immune system problem.”

Here’s what I’m going to tell you: lab ranges are misleading. They’re based on unhealthy people. I mean go, get your blood drawn. Who’s in there? Do you see the little old man? I mean no disrespect. I love everyone and older people. You see that little old man on oxygen? You see the person that’s obese and sick? You see the lady that’s fighting off cancer? You see the young man that’s there getting drug tested? That’s not our healthy population. Guess what? These labs are based off of averages of those people and you’re compared against them.

The healthy people that don’t have problems don’t go get their blood drawn because they’re not sick, so I’m going to tell you how we as functional medicine doctors help you to get better and more accurate and more sensitive information with your labs.

What we do is we help you to determine if you think in your lab tests you’ve been told they’re normal, this is what we do. You see this top bar here, which is red? It says “abnormal low lab values,” so that would be the lab low. You would have a problem if you are over that. Then, this is the “normal” lab range, this broad area. If you go above that, you have abnormal high values. Let me ask you a question. If right in the middle is ideal and normal, and that’s where you want to be, what if you’re like right here? Am I okay or if I’m like 2 or 3 points away from being high, is that okay or am I sick? If I’m 1 or 2 points over, am I sick now?

When do you start becoming unhealthy? Look at this bar here. What we do – you see these yellow areas? Those are our functional ranges. Here the green area on the bottom, that’s the ideal optimal range we want you in. These functional ranges come from the American Association of Clinical Chemists and from consensus statements of all these different groups say like thyroid. There’s a consensus statement that could be put out. What we do is we use what they say is ideal, not with the lab averages or what they lab say. Some of them are from clinical experience, and then some of the ranges are actually your lab ranges that we will use because they’re appropriate for that, but we use these more sensitive ranges.

What happens is if you start to drift outside the ideal range and you get into this yellow area, we can look and it’s more sensitive for a system that’s declining, that has poor health. What we can do is it can tell us about a problem before it becomes a disease state. We use these to be more sensitive. We apply these to our labs so that we can help you to get information to make better decisions before it becomes a disease.

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Here’s the thing. Were all your tests normal? Did you have your tests? Let’s take a look at some of the stuff. Let’s look at glucose, which is fasting blood sugar. Our functional range is we use 85 mg/dl to 100 mg/dl. If you go to the standard lab ranges, they’re typically somewhere between 65 mg/dl to 110 mg/dl. They’ll tell you that your range is okay there. From a functional range, if you have 73, if you came in with a fasting blood sugar of 73, what I would tell you is that you’re functionally hypoglycemic or low. If you would go to your lab, they would say, “There’s no problem. You’re not a 65 yet.”

Really? I’ve met a lot of people that have blood sugar of 73 mg/dl that feel horrible, but you’re normal. There’s nothing wrong with you. You’re normal. Really? Why do I feel so terrible then? Those are the problems. We got to do better work and that’s what we’re doing with functional medicine. We are looking to do more sensitive work, and there are a lot of examples of this.

I just want to share with you that you might not be normal. You’re just lab normal, which means you’re just not sick yet. You’re not just diagnosable disease state yet, but wait a little while and you’ll see what happens. That’s not the approach we take. We want to be preventative. We want to be restorative. We want to help you heal, so we look at things differently.

Traditional Allopathic Medical Approach

The traditional approach here that you see medically is people basically for these inflammatory conditions, they’re just going to give you steroids, immunosuppressants, and antiinflammatories. I mean there is no addressing why. I don’t accept that. I refute that. I refuse that to be part of how I help people because I think that’s just being palliative. I mean you know what palliative care is hospice care. I want life care. I want to live, so let’s talk about how to live. That system manages the problem. It does not address why.

This here is the thing. I got family members that are medical doctors. I got great friends that are medical doctors. I got great friends that are nurse practitioners and PAs. They all love everyone that they see. Every single person in healthcare means well. Don’t get me wrong. Your doctors really care about you. They’re trying the best they can for you. They just don’t know what else to do. You know what if I were in their shoes, I would be the same way. I wouldn’t know what else to do for you unless I’ve studied functional medicine.

From an allopathic, from your traditional medical model, that doest fit with what they do because this takes time. This takes time. You got to spend more time. You can’t do it. You can’t even do a 10-minute or 15-minute office visit. Some doctors give you 5 minutes. There’s no way you can do this in that kind of time because it requires changes in lifestyle, changes in diet, nutraceutical supplementation to nurture the body back to health. Then you get people off all of the stuff you put them on and you help them reincorporate and get back to more of normal diet because it’s not about having you do something long term.

The functional medicine approach is about helping you nurture your health back then get you back to a normal life. We had the best system for emergency care, the very best system for emergency care. If you need to be put back together or you need a heart transplant or you need a liver transplant, or you need a surgery, this is the country to be in. But when it comes to chronic care, we are failing miserably, and that’s where functional medicine is and shines. That’s where we are the future of rescuing and helping people that have chronic diseases.

What makes my approach different?

What makes what I do and how we work with patients different is that I want to figure out why the root cause of your problems so that we can help you to get your health back. I want to work to support your health naturally, and that’s what I do. I leave no stone unturned to figure out why you have the problem you have.

I tell this to people that I talk to. You’ve got to think about this. You’ve got to think about what is life to you, what matters to you because you have to decide if you want to keep going down that road of that medical management where they’re just treating your symptoms and you continue to be sick. Do you want to go down that path, this path, which is typically the path less taken because it’s new science but it’s not the one-pill fix? There is no one-pill fix. It’s just the process of managing the disease. We’re trying to manage the symptoms as you get more and more sick. Do you want to take this path in doing functional medicine to help you restore your health, to figure out why you got this problem?

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How do you see yourself in the future? Because I look at myself and I say, “You know what I don’t want that for myself. I don’t believe that there’s nothing I can do for my health.” I was right, and I’m right today. I want to be here for my kids. I want to be here to help my community, my parents, and my family.

I want to live a long and vibrant life, and I know everyone does, too everyone does. I don’t know how to do that any other way than what the stuff I’m telling you. I don’t know of any other way because there’s no magic pill. There’s nothing magical that we can do. We just have to do what’s required to get the body healthy.

You have to think about what’s important to you because it doesn’t make your heart beat a little heavy to think that you might be leaving your significant other behind, not be dying before you should. You might be leaving some grandkids, some children behind, then you’re not looking at the right motivators because that’s where I look at. I look at that for myself. I’m going to do everything I can. I will be here to help the community, my family. Your future can be better. You don’t have to just do those things. There are other options and other alternatives.

First Two Visits

What we do in my clinic is this. It’s a two-visit process if you see us.

You come in to see me, I’ll have you complete a very extensive, and I mean every extensive case history. I want to know everything about you. You have to return it before at least a few days before a scheduled appointment, so that I can review it because I review it before I meet with you on that first day.

I’ll review it with you and when I review it with you in a 30-minute appointment, I will have recommendations for you on what’s next, and typically that means some testing. After we get some testing ordered, we’ll order testing, you come back for a second visit. On that second visit, what I do is do a report of findings.

You have to have your significant other with you. You have to. Here’s the problem: whenever I go over findings clinically with someone, this stuff requires changes in diet and lifestyle. It requires a change in your life temporarily, at least temporarily. If your significant other is not there to know about all the problems that we find, you might have parasites. You might have autoimmunity. You might have all these other drivers to this process. You’re going to have to change your diet some. You’re going to have to be on temporary supplementation. They have to know how bad this problem is and what it takes, and what its consequences are.

What happens is you’re going to go home and try to explain to our significant other and they’re not going to have no clue and not understand anything and they’re not going to be onboard to help you. I refuse to set you up for failure. I refuse it, and I will not do it.

What I require is that your significant other be there. If it applies and you have a significant other, they have to be there. They have to be there. I will not see you on day 2 without them here because it is that important because I’m serious about working with people. I’m not playing games here. I want you to be healthy and I refuse to set you up for failure.

You see, I’ve done it enough where I’ve had people that didn’t have their significant other with them and it set them up for failure because that person didn’t understand what they were going through. When I spend an hour talking to someone about my findings on day 2, I do not have that time to do it again.

What you have to do is they have to be there because it’s that important because we’re going to talk about things that are going to be lifestyle changes and it’s really important. I refuse to set you up for failure. I refuse to do it. If I can help you, I’ll give you my best recommendation. If I can accept your case, I’d let you know that day. I don’t accept everyone because here’s the thing: if I don’t think I can help you or if I don’t think we’re a good fit, then I’m very upfront with you because you have to be committed to be being better. There are a lot of requirements of you.

I am willing to help anyone who’s willing and committed to helping themselves, absolutely committed, but you have to be absolutely committed. There can be no wishy-washiness. You have to, “I want to be healthy. I am going to be healthy, and I want to do this and I will do this.” That’s the attitude it takes, folks.

When you want health, you have to fight for it, and you have to be determined to do that. You have to remember why you’re doing it. You want to live a life of vibrance. You want to live a longer life. You want to be there for your significant other. You want to be there for your children. You want to be there for your grandchildren. You want to enjoy the things that you deserve to enjoy in life. When you do that, you will accomplish anything.

[1:09:44]- Irritable Bowel Syndrome Natural Support

I appreciate you listening to me today. I appreciate you taking time from your day to learn about your health. If you have questions, please let us know. We’re here to help you out. You can visit my website at drbradshook.com. I’m constantly producing more videos and information in writing so that I can help you to be healthy naturally.

You can call our office. Our phone number is here at the bottom, (828)324-0800, and I’ll help to answer any questions that we can about potentially becoming a patient. You can go to our website, learn more. If you’re started in becoming a patient, just go to the bottom of the website, fill up the form to request one of our intake packets.

My staff will receive that notification and we’ll send you the intake packet and call you to schedule an appointment and help you with any questions that you have.

I appreciate you taking time from your day. Go enjoy your day. Be with the people that make love and make the best of your life.

Thanks!

[End 1:10:42]- Irritable Bowel Syndrome Natural Support

Our office can be reached at (828) 324-0800.