Nutritional Health Tests
Functional Nutritional Pathology Testing
Functional nutritional pathology testing is used to investigate a person’s health issue by analysing their biochemical, nutritional or hormonal function.
Nutritional imbalances and inadequacies can cause significant disruptions to health by impairing normal physiological processes. There are also many diseases that cause nutritional deficiencies leading to a breakdown of physiological functions, which need addressing to ensure your body can function optimally.
The Benefits of Functional Nutritional Pathology Testing
Pathology testing is an important tool for Health Care Practitioners to help with early interventions, monitoring and managing a health issue. Initial testing helps to determine a health baseline, allowing the Health Care Practitioner to monitor progress and determine if treatment is effective and to make any adjustments to therapeutic treatment plans.
Functional nutritional pathology tests not only determine nutritional deficiencies but widen the test parameters by looking for biochemical markers that indicate dysregulation in a physiological process. Dysregulations in physiological process can occur at the molecular, tissue, organ or body system level.
Dysregulated body processes usually produce metabolic byproducts or waste that is unusual, outside of expected ranges or imbalanced. Having this extra pathology insight can help determine the actual origins of poor health conditions and provide a clearer and more target therapeutic pathway to help treat.
General Pathology Testing
General pathology testing through your GP is a very effective starting point to determine if you have an established nutrient deficiency. These tests are usually based on your symptoms or disease markers but can be limited in the fact the testing does not look in-depth at why the deficiency has occurred.
Some routine pathology tests that your GP might request to determine your nutritional status, include:
- Iron Status
- Vitamin D Levels
- Vitamin B12
- Thyroid Function – This is not a nutrition test however, certain nutrients such as iodine & selenium are needed to ensure healthy thyroid function
- Red Blood Cell Counts – The number and size of red blood cells can indicate certain anemias which are caused by a lack of B vitamins
- Liver Function Tests – Certain liver enzymes can be elevated and indicate Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Diseases, which is usually diet & lifestyle related
These blood tests are usually bulked billed to Medicare.
I always encourage people to keep a copy of their pathology tests for their own health records and to have on hand if needed for review by another Health Care Practitioner.
What is Tested Under Function Nutritional Pathology
The type of pathology analysis that can be ordered include:
- Saliva Hormone Testing
- Neurotransmitter Profiling
- Thyroid Hormone Profiling
- Intestinal Permeability Testing
- Gut Microbiome Mapping
- Cardiovascular Health Profile
- Allergy Testing
- Food Intolerance Testing
- Digestive Stool Analysis
Depending on the pathology analysis required the test sample will be either a blood, stool, urine, breath or saliva sample.
Functional nutritional pathology testing is not covered under Medicare.