What Services Are Provided By A

Functional Medicine Practicioner?

Primary Care Physician

Functional Medicine addresses the underlying causes of disease, using a system-oriented approach and engaging both patient and practitioner in a therapeutic partnership.  It is an evolution in the practice of medicine that better addresses the healthcare needs of the 21st century. By shifting the traditional disease centered focus of medical practice to a more patient centered approach, Functional Medicine addresses the whole person, not just an isolated set of symptoms. Functional Medicine practitioners spend time with their patients, listening to their histories and looking at the interactions among genetic, environmental and lifestyle factors that can influence long-term health and complex chronic diseases. In a way, Functional Medicine supports the unique expression of health and vitality for each individual.

 

Gastrointestinal Problems

Patients seeking out complementary therapies typically experience two issues: 1) they have bothersome chronic conditions, and 2) they have been frustrated in finding the cause or an effective solution. We see this frequently among individuals with primary gastrointestinal (GI) bowel complaints. They may be diagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome or another functional GI disorder. The latter term implies that there is no specific treatable condition such as Chron's disease or ulcerative colitis. Patients may interpret the labeling as psychological which is in sharp contrast to their reality. The pain, cramping, diarrhea are real. When we see patients with these conditions at IRMC, we employ a holistic approach. Our goal is to engage the person in activities that can help manage symptoms but more importantly to find the cause of the problem using integrative approaches encompassing dietary and nutritional changes, DNA/Gene Profiling as well as Organix comprehensive profiles.  There are answers out there to provide you with the solutions you are looking for. Sometimes we just need to look outside the mainstream box to find them.

 

DNA/Gene Profiling and Interpretation

Epigenetics: The future of healing is here! Could a genetic test help you dodge a disease like cancer or Alzheimer's? By finding out early that you have a gene predisposing you to diseases like obesity, cancer, heart disease, or dementia, you can take steps to reduce the chances of developing the disease. This is the basis of epigenetics, a new frontier in medical science.

 

A few years ago, the general belief was that if something was "in your genes" you were stuck with it. We thought our genetic profile was chiseled in stone and you just had to make the best of what you got. The new science of epigenetics is turning all of that on its head.  Yes, you might have a gene that predisposes you to cancer or dementia, fibromyalgia, migraines, thyroid deficiency, obesity, arthritis, or some other condition but you have huge control over whether the gene is activated or not. And if you do activate it, there's also a chance it can be turned off-or at least cooled down. It turns out that our genes are not so much chiseled in stone but written in pencil and they can be erased and rewritten.  Make an appointment with Dr. Payant today and find out how you can learn more about your genetic profile and how to use the information to create and maintain a happier and healthier life for both you and your family.

 

Organix Comprehensive Profiles

The Organix Comprehensive Profile is a nutritional test providing insights into organic acids and a view into the body's cellular metabolic processes. By allowing the Doctors to identify metabolic blocks that can be treated nutritionally allows individual tailoring of interventions that maximize patient responses and lead to improved and sustainable patient outcomes.

 

Neurotransmitter Profile Testing

Dr. Payant has completed a Neuroscience Neurology and Endocrinology certificate program which gives him the tools to address health issues through the evaluation of the nervous and endocrine system as well as neurotransmitter function.

 

Neurotransmitters are the primary messengers for the nervous system, which coordinates everything from the stress response to general organ function to emotion and cognitive function. What has recently come to light in the research is that the immune system also produces and uses neurotransmitters.

 

Imbalances in these neuro-immune markers can disrupt normal nervous and immune system function leading to the manifestation of psychological, somatic, mood disorders and related clinical complaints.

Neurotransmitter Profile Testing is recommended for patients with:

  • Moodiness

  • Irritability

  • Addictions

  • Compulsions

  • Anxiety/OCD

  • Agitation

  • Depression

  • Headaches/Migraines

  • Learning disorders

  • GI Complaints

  • ADD/ADHD

  • Polypharmacy

  • Autism

  • Tourette Syndrome

  • PTSD

  • Oppositional Defiant Disorder

  • Dementia/Cognitive Decline

  • Constipation

  • Unexplained Weight Gain

 

Neurotransmitter and Endocrine Profile Testing

Non-Hormonal approaches to "Endocrine" symptoms

Due to the interactions between each system included in the NEI (neuro-endo-immune) system, symptoms can sometimes appear as a hormone issue when in actuality, they can be attributed to a neurotransmitter imbalance. Common symptoms include mood changes, focus issues, insomnia, fatigue or anxiety. Addressing NEI system disturbances often results in patient symptom resolution without the need for hormone replacement therapy (HRT)

 

These tests are recommended for patients with symptoms of nervous system imbalance indicated in the Neurotransmitter Profile Testing list above, plus: 

  • Fatigue

  • Brain Fog

  • Chronic Pain

  • Panic Disorders

  • Eating Disorders

  • PMS

  • Restless Sleep

  • Chronic Illness

  • Insomnia

  • Low Libido

  • Personality Disorders

  • Hirsutism

  • PCOS

  • Hot Flashes/Cold Sweats

  • Andropause Symptoms

  • Menopause Symptoms

 

Stemcell and Homeopathic Injection Therapy

Regenerative medicine aims to repair and fix damaged tissue, rather than simply mask pain. The "Holy Grail" of pain management is to actually repair cartilage damage, tendon and ligament injuries rather than provide a proverbial "bandaid".

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These pain management stem cell injections are designed with the potential for disease modification, not just back or joint pain symptom management. Make an appointment today for a consultation and find out if one of these injection therapy options might be the solution you have been looking for. 

 

Rheumatoid Arthiritis

In Functional Medicine, in addition to trying to control the pain and inflammation of RA, the emphasis is on identifying the modifiable triggers that activated the immune system in the first place and the mediators that perpetuate the activation. Instead of saying, “Well, let’s just turn the immune system off and deal with the potentially detrimental consequences of that later,” we, instead, ask the questions: “What is the immune system telling us?” “What does it need to avoid?” “Is there a dangerous stranger to which it is reacting?” And, perhaps most importantly, we ask: “Is there anything the immune system needs—a nutrient or an herb, for example—to help it function properly?” Rather than focusing on the details of disease classification, we look at how the disease gets established, starting with what predisposed the person to it, what the antecedents were that made the person more susceptible, what the triggers are that activate it—such as microbes, foods, toxins, and traumas— and what the mediators are that keep it going. Once these factors have been identified, then the practitioner and the patient can work together on a plan to change the person’s diet and lifestyle to help avoid the triggers and modify the mediators that perpetuate the disease process.

 

Dermatology

Integrative Dermatology combines the best of conventional dermatology with some of the more holistic options of an alternative approach. For the patient whose skin condition is resistant to conventional therapies or for the patient who prefers to limit exposure to pharmaceuticals, a focus on nutrition, environment and lifestyle can be useful.

 

Diabetes

Nothing can fix your body better than it can fix itself. We must provide it with the right environment, nutrition, and reduce stress. Your lifestyle and nutritional status have a profound impact on insulin and consequently lead to diabetes.

 

At IRMC we address the root cause of your diabetes and restore your health and vitality. By listening to your personal story, analyzing your lab work and providing you with education, you will receive the tools and direction to live an extraordinary life and prevent diabetes from taking over your life.  Diabetes is heavily influenced by lifestyle and therefore can be managed much better when a patient has all the information available to them. Make an appointment today with Dr. Payant and take back the control and influence that Diabetes has over your life. 

 

Nutritional Evaluation and Counseling

Functional Nutrition focuses on a patient's individual biochemistry and metabolism and how those factors affect the ability to function optimally. This approach to health promotion and disease prevention asserts that making simple adjustments to diet and lifestyle based on a patient's individual biochemistry can have profound positive impact on maintaining or restoring health. Our practitioners have a strong understanding of the relationship between food and well-being. They will analyze your current diet, assess your goals and help you develop a dietary plan that specifically works for you. Improving your nutritional balance through healthy diet can help you increase energy, relieve symptoms, prevent illness and enhance your overall health.

 

High Blood Pressure
In Functional Medicine, we look for why the person has high blood pressure rather than simply at what can be done to lower it. It's a person-centered approach, versus a disease-centered one. Factors to consider include genetic predispositions, nutritional deficiencies, environmental triggers, and lifestyle habits, such as:
 
  • Deficiencies in nutrients such as biotin, vitamin D, vitamin C, B1, choline, magnesium and CoQ10.

  • Toxic levels of mercury.

  • Hypothyroidism: Appropriate management of a thyroid condition such as autoimmune Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism can normalize blood pressure.

  • A lack of dietary potassium and too much sodium. Balancing these nutrients can help balance blood pressure.

  • Magnesium deficiency. Many people are deficient in magnesium, which can help relax the blood vessels.

  • Chronic systemic inflammation.

  • Elevated blood sugar and metabolic syndrome (pre-diabetes), which are related to hypertension.

  • Hormonal imbalances, such as an estrogen deficiency, can lead to high blood pressure.

 

By addressing these and other factors, a Functional Medicine approach addresses the root cause of high blood pressure. Research has shown that up to 62 percent of high blood pressure patients were able to go off their anti-hypertension medications and maintain normal blood pressure by making diet and lifestyle changes. 

 

Auto-Immune Problems

Autoimmune diseases are the third-leading cause of morbidity and mortality in the industrialized world. However, currently none of the drugs conventionally used against them provide any hope of an actual cure because they do not address the underlying causing factors that trigger and perpetuate chronic inflammation. Conventional medicine  has little to offer for patients likely to develop autoimmune conditions.

 

It is estimated that at least 20% of the population (and perhaps much more) have genes that predispose them to autoimmune disease, but only a fraction of those people will go on to develop full-blown disorders. Why is that? Other mitigating factors (triggers and mediators) must be involved. Those with a predisposition can develop an autoimmune disease due to environmental factors, toxic chemicals, drugs, bacteria, viruses, diet, or any of several other factors. This is where the clinician's detective work comes in. If you can help the patient avoid the triggers for his or her autoimmunity, then you may prevent him or her from developing full-blown autoimmune disease. 

 

Although conventional medicine offers little hope for curing autoimmune diseases and no mechanism is currently known for detecting and preventing an autoimmune disease in early stages of development, a Functional Medicine approach can help identify impending cases of autoimmune diseases and prevent them from developing. Furthermore, understanding the underlying causes of an individual's autoimmunity can lead to individualized treatments that support your immune system instead of suppressing it and may stop and possibly reverse autoimmune diseases. 

 

Chronic Pain

Chronic pain affects more Americans than diabetes, heart disease and cancer combined . This means that nearly 1/3 of the people in this country suffer from some form of chronic pain.
Six of the top ten most prescribed drugs in the US in 2005 were pain medications and four of them are used to treat depression. Coincidence? Probably not. It's not a surprise we're all depressed and disappointed - many of these people go to doctor after doctor and never really get an answer. When x-rays and MRIs come back with no clear answers the patient almost always gets told that they are fine despite being in chronic, often times debilitating pain.
The thing that is absolutely critical for you to understand is that pain is a cortical event- it takes place in the brain. The only thing that needs to happen for you to feel pain is those neurons in your brain that perceive pain need to become active. The thing that makes pain so tricky is that those neurons can be made to become active for a million reasons.

  • Receptors in the skin or tissue get activated by tissue damage or other processes

  • Mechanical receptors in the tissues stop firing, and thus, stop inhibiting pain neurons

  • Neurons in the spinal cord that normally inhibit (stop) pain pathways stop firing

  • Neurons in the brain stem that normally inhibit pain stop firing

  • Neurons in the brain that produce the perception of pain fire

  • Neurons in parts of the brain that normally inhibit pain stop firing


The underlying assumption in almost all conventional methods for diagnosing and treating chronic pain is that there is tissue damage and this is often not the case. This is why movement in the form of exercise and spinal adjustments are so critical to any pain management protocol.
 

It's important to understand that anything that causes inflammation, disease, or imbalance in the body affects every single cell in your body including the neurons involved in pain perception. Examples could include diabetes or blood sugar problems, anemia, hypothyroidism, concussion, leaky gut syndrome, autoimmune disease, food sensitivities, hormonal imbalances, or lack of quality sleep.

IRMC's general approach to chronic pain is simply:

  • Evaluate wether or not the pain is coming from actual tissue damage through the use of X-ray or MRI and possible chiropractic care. 

  • Take a holistic approach to finding the root cause(s) of imbalance or inflammation (such as those above) in that person and address those issues using as holistic and non-invasive approach as possible.

 

We want to see you living your life to the fullest and pain free. 

 

Comprehensive Stool Analysis
The GI Effects Comprehensive Stool Profile is the stool test of choice for optimizing clinical value in managing gut health and has been enhanced to now offer:
 
  • Further insight into gut flora by identifying 24 commensal bacteria targets using PCR technology

  • Identification of parasites using O&P technology

  • Biomarkers indicating levels of digestive and absorptive functions, as well as potential issues with gut inflammation and immunology

 

Why use targeted stool testing? 


Gastrointestinal function is critical for good health. The intestinal tract contains significant amounts of bacteria which, when imbalanced, scientific literature has associated with a wide variety of common illnesses including, but not limited to:

  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)

  • Autoimmune Disorders

  • Diabetes

  • Cardiovascular Disease

 

Additionally, balancing gut microbiota is key for improving core gastrointestinal functions, such as digestion and absorption of nutrients, as well as metabolic functions. Poor digestion and malabsorption may impact immune function, optimum nutritional status, and mood.

 

To learn more about the importance of your GI health please take a moment to view Dr. Payant's multiple guest TV appearances on this subject matter on the VIDEOS tab in the Function Medicine section of this website. 

 

Women's Health Issues

Women have unique health care needs throughout their life span.  Our approach to women’s health care is to recognize that women have complex, multifaceted lives and more complex hormone changes than men.  The physicians at Integrative & Restorative Medical Center, listen to the whole of a women’s story and help guide her to appropriate care for her stage of life: pre-teen, adulthood, peri-menopause, menopause, and beyond.  We provide annual preventive health exams, including tests for health risk factors; common female problems like infections, PMS, cramps, bleeding, irregular periods, fibroids, endometriosis, breast tenderness, etc.  We provide natural fertility enhancement and awareness, and pre-pregnancy counseling.  We help guide women as they up-grade for the future during peri-menopause and menopause.  We also work with women to make lifestyle changes and offer longevity counseling.

 

 

Men's Health Issues

Men like women can suffer age related changes in their hormone levels, for men this is called Andropause.  By the time they are 60 most men will produce 60% less testosterone than when they were 20. The consequences can include depression, sexual dysfunction, mild cognitive impairment, osteoporosis and cardiovascular disease. Some men may not realize that their loss of interest in their work, lack of social interest, loss of libido, and frequent irritability may not be midlife crisis or “just getting old”. It may be low testosterone. Our Functional Medicine approach is to look at testosterone levels as well as the metabolites or components that make up testosterone.  We also look at the enzyme aromatase that is found in skin, fat, bone and brain cells as it can actually change testosterone into estrogen. We individualize the care of each patient to optimize hormone levels and restore vitality.   

 

Fertility Issues

Fertility is dependent on both male and female health factors. There are many things that can impact circulation and hormones of the reproductive organs. Much is dependent on our lifestyle, diet, sleep, and how we respond to stress.

 

The acupuncture points used, have internal branches that connect to organ systems, glands and tissues. When there are blockages in the “Qi” (or energy movement and vitality that helps normal flow), it can effect our bodies ability to function well. Over time, these blockages can cause poor circulation, poor ovulation, implantation issues and more.

 

Functional Medicine looks at your body as a whole. It takes all of your signs and symptoms into account, while assessing your past and current histories. Some patients seeking help, may have minimal stress, and only need a little dietary and herbal support, to help them conceive. Or maybe they need better blood flow to the reproductive organs to help ovulation or sperm irregularities, and conception occurs. Another person may have had many illnesses, fatigue, high stress factors, which could cause more difficulty in conception. The need to build up her system before her body would be ready for pregnancy might take more time. There are many more examples, some involving genetics, some seemingly very unfair in the scheme of things.

 

One of the most impressive and encouraging aspects of Functional Medicine and treating the body as a whole, is that for most conditions that inhibit fertility, there is treatment, it is healthy, stress reducing, and life enhancing as well as enabling the possibility of conception.

 

Heavy Metal Toxicity
  • Heavy Metal Detoxification

  • Testing for heavy metals

  • A comprehensive program for removal

  • A heavy metal toxic burden can affect overall health and the ability to heal

 

The presence of heavy metals in the body has been linked to everything from memory loss to fatigue to personality changes. Blood levels of mercury, tin, lead, arsenic, aluminum, and cadmium can be monitored using a lab test. Heavy metal detoxification is the process of ridding the body of these toxic metals through a variety of means, including nutritional supplements, herbal mixtures, intravenous injections, oral and chelating agents. Positive health effects can be achieved by reducing the body's toxic levels of these metals.  Once the heavy metal burden is relieved, other parasite, yeast and organic detoxification proceeds easier.

 

Heavy metal detoxification is the removal of  toxic metals from the body and restoration of  proper functioning of the autonomic nervous system and the organs affected by it. The program is done in phases over time to protect the body and allow rest and healing, using a multi-strategy approach based on the individual patient's needs. 

 

The body is supported and replenished through high-grade nutritional supplements, herbs, I.V. therapy, therapeutic massage or bodywork. These therapies work to calm the body while the detoxification is slowly taking place.

 

 

 

 

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