Functional Blood Chemistry Anaylsis
A blood chemistry analysis can provide valuable information, as long as it is interpreted using functional lab ranges. Conventional medicine uses the lab ranges when reviewing test results, and these are often too broad. Using these ranges may allow doctors to identify diseases that are already in full swing, but it will not allow them to identify imbalances that often occur leading up to the disease process. Conversely, a functional approach uses tight “optimal” ranges to identify changes in physiology. The idea is to try to catch dysfunction early so it can be corrected.
Blood chemistry reports list a reference range next to each marker. These reference ranges, however, have inherent problems. First, they can vary between different labs and different states. So, you could have been previously diagnosed with a thyroid condition, but after moving to a different state and seeing a new doctor, suddenly your thyroid is functioning properly (despite the symptoms that are still presenting). Second, these ranges are based on the average population, and as you can imagine, the average population is sick! I would much rather compare my lab results to those that come from healthy people, wouldn’t you?
The reason we want to use an optimal “functional” range to interpret a report is because these values are seen in a disease-free population. In other words, these values have not been associated with an increased risk of dysfunction or disease in research studies.
So, it is important to understand that you may have been told that your blood work was “fine” or “normal” because it fell within the lab’s reference ranges, when in fact you may be missing an opportunity to address dysfunction before it turns into disease. “Normal” is often not optimal, and every marker that falls outside of its optimal range could be telling you a story.
Blood testing can identify patterns and deficiencies and can also act as a guide for additional functional testing that will help to zero in on the root cause of the identified deficiencies. Doctors often run basic panels on patients who come in complaining of stress, fatigue, brain fog, weight gain, and a host of other symptoms. Do you have recent blood work that you’d like a second opinion on? Schedule an appointment with me to review your lab results using more optimal ranges, and let’s see if we can identify healing opportunities.