Optimal Wellness Niagara offers a variety of diagnostic tests, based on each person’s needs, to help diagnose and treat health your conditions. Here are some of the more commonly used tests:
Laboratory Blood Testing:
Your naturopathic doctor can order traditional blood tests such as cholesterol panels, thyroid, iron, blood sugar, and vitamin D. Laboratory blood tests reveal parameters that can indicate not only medical problems but can also be an indicator of overall health.
When analyzing traditional laboratory tests, physicians will evaluate the results for “normal” levels. At Optimal Wellness Niagara we analyze blood results for “optimal” levels, which indicates factors far beyond regular levels – can indicate metabolic function and reveal patterns to help understand organ functioning. Essentially, we analyze blood results and read between the lines with the goal of prevention and achieving optimal wellness.
These tests are done through Life Labs, CML or Gamma Dynacare and are not covered by OHIP.
Food Sensitivity Testing:
Food sensitivity testing is an excellent way to determine which foods may cause symptoms such as inflammation, digestive issues, fatigue, aches and pains, acne, skin rashes or itching, mood swings, and many other health conditions and symptoms. The immune response to a variety of different foods is tested by a simple blood test. A detailed report will be provided to review with your naturopathic doctor and receive a report and be counseled on foods they should avoid.
Adrenal Stress Testing:
Everyone experiences stress at times, but how well we cope with stress depends on a number of factors, one of which is hormone balance. The body’s experience of stress is carefully mapped out by a series of hormone responses. Since cortisol is the major stress hormone produced by the adrenal glands, measurement of cortisol levels helps to assess the ability to cope with stress.
Though modern-day stressors tend to be less dramatic compared to the physical stressors of past centuries, they tend to last longer and occur more frequently. This means cortisol levels may remain mildly elevated in most people, resulting in symptoms such as feeling tired but wired, difficulty sleeping, and anxiety. This excess cortisol can interfere with other hormones to create more hormone imbalances, and more symptoms.
Over time the adrenal glands may become depleted, resulting in low cortisol levels, with accompanying symptoms such as fatigue (particularly morning), increased susceptibility to infection, decreased recovery from exercise and disease, allergies, low blood sugar, burned out feeling, depression, and low sex drive.
This is a simple, non-invasive test utilizes four saliva samples collected at specific time periods during one day. With this information your practitioner can help support your stress response as well as decrease stress-related damage to your body.
Female Hormone Testing:
Female hormone lab testing can be done using saliva, blood or urine. These tests are designed to help sort out the specifics of a hormone imbalance to assist in the prevention and treatment of hormone related symptoms and conditions. Hormone issues can affect women of any age. Women who still have menstrual cycles may experience infertility, mood swings, premenstrual syndrome, anxiety, painful periods, while women in peri-menopause and menopause often experience debilitating sleep disturbances, night sweats, hot flashes, accelerated bone loss and more.
Male Hormone Testing:
Male hormones lab testing can be done using saliva, blood or urine. Yes, hormone imbalances affect men too – in fact low testosterone is a common cause of irritability and grumpiness in men. Other conditions associated with male hormone imbalance include depression, bone loss, erectile dysfunction, memory loss, weight gain and enlarged prostate (BPA). Identifying and correcting the hormone imbalances can have a significant impact on men’s well-being.
Omega 3-Fatty Acid Profile:
The essential fatty acid family (Omega-3 and Omega-6) are essential because they come only from food. Most of us get plenty of Omega-6 but lack the Omega-3 in our diets. The right balance of these fatty acids in our body’s have been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease and inflammation throughout the body, including the eyes.
Prevention starts with knowing the risk factors you have and correcting what you can.
This profile measures the percentage of fatty acids in red blood cells from a convenient dried blood spot. Measurements include the Omega-3 Index and Omega-3 score, the ratios
Hair is a simple and painless way to measure imbalances and toxicities of the minerals and metals that are stored in the body. Minerals are 10-15 times higher in the hair than in the blood or urine. As such, hair analysis provides a clear picture of any imbalances or problems with the body’s mineral components. Toxic elements found in the hair also produce a permanent record of exposures, meaning a single hair can provide a timeline of when a toxic exposure occurred.
Having your hair analyzed at least once a year can allow you to prevent mineral deficiencies and serious health concerns. A hair analysis can be done more frequently if necessary to monitor the effects of any ongoing treatment programs.
In order to complete a hair analysis, about 1 gram of head hair is taken from the nape of the neck and sent to a lab for analysis. A report will be provided to your practitioner at Optimal Wellness Niagara who will review and interpret the results with you.
Heavy Metal Screening:
Heavy metal testing can be done through the hair, blood or urine. Each type of test reveals different information: hair analysis looks chronic exposure in the tissue; blood assesses acute exposure; and urine measures the body’s ability to eliminate heavy metals. Heavy metal testing is indicated for people with suspected toxicity, when fatigue, mood imbalances, or cardiovascular disease are a concern; or for those individuals who have been struggling with a chronic illness.
Aka Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (BIA) is a method of assessing your “body composition” – the measurement of body fat in relation to lean mass, the amount of body fluids such as water, body cell mass, basal metabolic rate, cellular health, and more.
Bioimpedance Analysis is a wonderful tool to benchmark your health, particularly for people interested in weight loss and lifestyle change. This test also reveals early detection of improper balance in your body composition, which allows for earlier intervention and prevention of disease.
To measure BIA, your practitioner will collect general health parameters such as height, weight, gender, age, body type, physical activity level and more. Electrodes are placed on one hand and one foot, as you lie comfortably clothed on an exam table. A small, safe electrical signal is passes through your body generating a computerized report.
EDS is the measurement of the body’s acupuncture points and meridians systems. It is a blend of technology and traditional Asian medical theory. The system is used to assess the function of the organ systems such as the intestines, lymph tissues, kidney, and liver. It may be used to determine the overall state of regulation and may also be used to identify infections, dental problems, vitamin/mineral deficiencies, weakness to heavy metals and toxins, and food and environmental allergies or sensitivities.
The process consists of the individual holding a brass rod in one hand, while the naturopathic doctor touches certain points on the body (usually the hand or foot) with a stylus (pen-like probe) and a measurement is recorded into a computer. It is a resistance measurement procedure that is based on “electrical engineering physics.” This process is non-invasive (it does not puncture the skin) and does not give shocks.
Bone Health Testing:
A bone panel provides an assessment of bone health utilizing a combination of non-invasive saliva and urine tests. It measures how fast bone is being lost and the hormone levels associated with bone health.
We use a group of non-invasive screens of the gastrointestinal tract and its function. The patient submits stool samples after home collection. This test evaluates digestion, absorption, gut flora and the colonic environment. And can evaluate for parasites using microscopic examination and testing.