In today's world, our traditional medical toolbox is not obsolete — only incomplete.
Toolbox of the Integrative Medicine Practice
New physician assistant grads start their first year of practice armed with a stethoscope, oto-opthalmoscope, tendon hammer, sphygmomanometer, white lab coat, PDR, lab request forms, and the prescription pad. Over the past 30 years this “toolbox” has become more sophisticated requiring a computer to document visits and scan 2,500 pages of the PDR, but essentially has stayed the same.
The integrative medicine practice uses this same toolbox with one main difference: the prescription pad is on the bottom. Sitting on top of the pad and PDR are dietary supplements and innovative testing devices which evaluate nutritional deficiencies and vascular flexibility.
The philosophy of integrative medicine is to support the foundation of the body so it can heal. This requires addressing the root causes of symptoms and only treating symptoms as long as necessary. In order to accomplish this, our role as healthcare providers is to partner with patients to provide the following:
- evaluate and support the foundation of the body
- help them identify and correct deficiencies
- identify and remove barriers that are preventing their body from healing
Below I review some of the key dietary products most Integrative Medicine PAs will be using in their practices.
Foundational Support Products
In my book The Integrative Medicine Solution, I outline the jigsaw puzzle approach to simplify this process (click here to read more about the Optimal Health Blueprint, jigsaw puzzle approach). The four sides of the puzzle represent the key foundational areas of the body which need to be evaluated and supported:
1. Evaluate and Restore Blood Flow
Pulsewave and nitric oxide testing evaluate endothelial dysfunction and blood flow. Optimal blood flow is regulated by optimal nitric oxide levels (click here to read more about NO and blood flow). If your patient needs support, first focus on nitric oxide inducing foods and moderate exercise.
If additional support is needed, the company HumanN (formerly Neogenis Medical) has a patented dietary support lozenge called Neo40 Professional which can help restore NO levels. This supplement is a patented lozenge that uses beets, hawthorne, and other natural ingredients to restore NO levels. L-arginine based products were the only way known to increase NO levels initially until Dr. Nathan Bryan discovered this new dietary pathway.
Patients regularly monitor their NO levels using the NO saliva test strips to be sure they stay in the NORMAL range. Call me at (530) 605-1505 to get set up for special practitioner pricing.
2. Evaluate and Support Pituitary Function
Pituitary function is essential in healing. This is virtually ignored by traditionally trained PAs and physicians. Optimal health will not be attained if the pituitary is not supported. The pituitary plays a key role in the production of HGH which is necessary for numerous basic functions including conversion of T4 to T3 and adrenal function, to tissue repair and maintenance of organ size. Heart function cannot be optimized if HGH levels are low. Most people over age 40 have started this HGH decline called “somatopause” — read more about this in Chapter 7 of my book.
I personally use and recommend to patients a very effective oral spray called Otropin to support pituitary function. This is a secretogue which delivers essential amino acids, l-ornithine alpha-ketoglutarate (OKG), and a proprietary blend of herbs wrapped in a liposomal delivery system which pass through the blood brain barrier to nourish the pituitary.
3. Evaluate & Support Digestive Health
The need for probiotics and digestive support is now widely accepted by traditional practitioners. Integrative medicine practitioners know dysbiosis is associated with health problems including immune system dysfunction, affective disorders and cardiovascular disease.
In my office, I use a comprehensive supplement which includes prebiotics (food for the probiotics – (FOS) fructooligosaccharides), probiotics, enzymes, and serrapeptase. This last ingredient, serrapeptase, is a proteolytic enzyme used widely in Europe and Japan to help reduce inflammation.
4. Chemical Detoxification — Initial and Ongoing
A good diet and lifestyle are not enough to reach and maintain optimal health. Cellular chemical detoxification has been the missing foundational step in helping patients reach optimal health.
Each year the CDC (Center for Disease Control & Prevention) measures how many chemicals end up in our bodies. For the last several years, ALL people tested have perchlorate in their system, a rocket fuel that interferes in thyroid function. The average adult has over 400 chemicals in their bodies. These chemicals accumulate over time and overload our bodies impairing endocrine, immune and nervous system functioning.
Click here to read more about this toxic world we live in: Detoxification Difference
I use a product called Ultimate Immune which supports the glucuronidation pathway — a major pathway in which the body detoxifies itself. This is a capsule from plant sources which provides calcium d-glucarate, beta glucans, and muramyl peptides to help detoxify our three trillion cells and balance immune response. I have patients take more for initial detoxification, anywhere from six to 12 daily. After several months of the higher dose, we reduce to a maintenance dose, around four to six daily, depending upon the patient’s ongoing chemical exposures.
- To learn more click on this link to view a video about Immune: Ultimate Immune
- See also "Cellular Detoxification," an interview with Shanhong Lu, MD, PhD.
- Buy Ultimate Immune here.
Products That Correct Deficiencies & Remove Barriers
Growing evidence shows our food is not as nutritious as it once was and lacks bioavailable vitamins and minerals. In my office we use the Oligoscan testing device to evaluate 20 cell bound minerals (including magnesium, silicon, phosphorus, iodine and others) and 14 heavy metals. We find nearly everyone is low in magnesium and iodine. Even if we eat a well-balanced diet, we no longer can count on our foods to supply all the nutrients our bodies need.
Multivitamin & Mineral Supplement
As an insurance policy, most everyone needs a good basic multivitamin and mineral supplement to supply the missing vitamins and minerals in our diet. Especially as the cellular detoxification process starts, the liver needs essential nutrients to support and complete phase 1 (mainly the P-450 cytochrome system) and phase 2 (conjugation pathway).
I especially like the All in One Multivitamin and Mineral supplement by Orenda, the same company that offers the Foundational supplements above. Orenda is unique in understanding and offering the essential nutrients needed to support liver detoxification in phase 1 and 2. Orenda offers three different multivitamin combinations: All in One Female, All in One Male, and the Young and Active. Each also has a special botanical blend to support men and women in midlife and older as well as the younger, active patient.
Orenda creates plant based high quality dietary supplements that are made using the Good Manufacturing Practices – the same requirements pharmaceutical companies are mandated to use. They voluntarily use this higher standard to ensure purity and bioavailability. The FDA does not regulate the supplement industry. Taking this extra steps helps us healthcare providers recommend products we know are safe and effective.
To learn more, click on this link to view a video about the All in One Multivitamins and Minerals: Orenda Ultimate
Orenda understands the synergy of supporting our body’s foundation. They have put four key supplements: Immune, Otropin, EASE, and the All in One multivitamin, in a monthly pack called the Ultimate Pack. Most patients start with this pack while adding extra Immune for the initial detoxification process. Many patients come into the office with a large bagful of supplements which can be reduced to these basic foundational supplements along with extra key nutrients that are deficient (such as iodine and magnesium).
Restorative Health Supplements
Restorative Formulations supply organically grown “farm to capsule” quality exclusively to healthcare practitioners. Their products help you correct deficiencies (such as vitamin D3) to adrenal and thyroid support as well as help remove barriers, like heavy metal toxicity. Here is their website information:
Our Commitment to Support Our Physicians:
Doctors who use Restorative Formulation products represent a very diverse group, from Cardiologists, to Anesthesiologists, to Naturopathic Physicians. But, they all have one common quality; they have extremely high standards regarding their patient's care. We support educational opportunities by sponsoring annual integrative medical conferences. Our focus on education has slowly evolved into the creation of a separate, non-profit (501c6) medical association, now called the Association for the Advancement of Restorative Medicine (AARM). Restorative Formulations maintains platinum sponsor status for AARM.
We also support our doctors by allowing the sales of our products exclusively to physicians and their patients. We work diligently to protect the value and purity of our brand and strictly prohibit sales to non-physicians and internet retailers.
Patients can order products directly from their website at www.restorative.com. Once they set up their patient account by putting in your practice phone number, you will receive monthly rebate checks from their purchases. Call Restorative to set up your healthcare provider account.
If you have the need to order product now before you get your account set up, you can create a patient account and order through my office account using my name, Cathy Ochs, PA-C, and phone number (530) 605-1505.
The Oligoscan testing device uses spectrophotometry to measure cell bound minerals and heavy metals. This device is one of the most useful testing devices you will have in your integrative medicine office. It is fast and simple — results in just one minute.
Call me, Cathy Ochs, PA-C, at (530) 605-1505 to get set up and start testing. I have arranged for group discounts on the device purchase.
If you have any questions or want more information about foundational products discussed on this page, call me.