Centuries ago, few predicted that we could assess ones’ health status from a vial or even a drop of blood, although Edgar Cayce foresaw the value of this in the late 1920’s.
What can “blood work” or blood chemistry tell us about one’s nutritional status? Well, let’s just say blood is a gold mine of information for the nutrition professional. Anything from a finger stick screen for diabetes, abnormal blood lipids or PSA to a full functional blood chemistry panel can enhance a nutrition consultation or assessment.
Just a few drops of blood can screen for diabetes; anemias; abnormal lipid metabolism; thyroid abnormalities; prostate specific antigen; inflammation and tissue damage. A full comprehensive blood panel, along with a history and consultation, can tell us much much more. A Comprehensive Wellness Panel will provide a snap shot in time reflecting one’s hydration status; possible anemia patterns; patterns for hypoglycemia, diabetes and insulin resistance; liver and kidney function; thyroid and pituitary function; acute and chronic infections; protein status and electrolyte status. Additional tests include magnesium; Vitamin D; hormonal status; neurotransmitter status; food allergy and food intolerance panels. Specialty tests, from SpectraCell.com are available to determine cardiovascular disease risk, omega 3 status, antioxidant and functional micronutrient status.
Assessing the results within a functional matrix can give the nutritionist clues about a patient’s current nutritional status and potential risk down the road. Health screening via finger stick can be done at a walk in clinic (LipidLabz.com) or a full blood draw (DirectLabs.com). Blood work can be requested and obtained without a prescription though most cost will be out-of-pocket. Once the blood work has been completed, you can take it your healthcare practiioner or have it reviewed by a nutrition professional (NutritionMission.org) where appropriate recommendations and referrals will help to guide you along your journey to optimal health.