We provide a plan, a partnership and a promise to get to the root cause so we can partner with you in restoring your health.
Ever wish your health care provider would just listen to your story and hear you out?
We believe that your story holds the answer to your current state of health and how to best restore it. By attentively listening to you, we know exactly where to start and how to best serve your needs.
Our recommendations will include the most appropriate functional lab testing, lifestyle recommendations, mindset shifts, nutrition, and required supplement support.
By listening closely, we help you save both time and money.
Your Personalised Health Optimazation Strategy To Address The Root Cause Of Your Symptoms & Restore Your Health
Over 80 autoimmune diseases have been identified, affecting an estimated 50 million people in the United States. 8 million more have autoantibodies, which indicates an increased risk of developing an autoimmune disease in the future. The prevalence of autoimmunity appears to be increasing in the United States in recent decades. The US National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Disease estimates that autoimmune diseases incur a cost of $100 billion to the US healthcare system annually. With the increasing prevalence of autoimmune diseases and the high-cost burden of treating them, interest in functional medicine as a treatment avenue for managing autoimmune diseases has increased.
Functional medicine is an individualized and science-based approach to treating health conditions by finding the root cause(s) of your autoimmune condition. A functional medicine doctor will dive deeper to find “the why” behind your symptoms.
A functional medicine assessment for autoimmune disease is much more in-depth than a conventional approach. Our doctors, nutritional therapists, and health coaches spend time developing a personalized approach to you and your needs, not your disease.
Instead of chasing symptoms and suppressing the immune system, a functional medicine approach to autoimmune disease typically involves:
1) Reducing inflammation
2) Healing the gut
3) Calming the immune response while supporting the body as a whole.
While the exact cause of autoimmune diseases is still not fully understood, researchers do know that there is no one singular cause. A variety of factors can play a role in their development.
The development of an autoimmune disease occurs when there are autoreactive lymphocytes that cause tissue damage. Dysfunctional regulatory mechanisms and immune cells, along with inflammatory cytokines, play a role in this response. (*)
Evidence from familial clustering, genome studies, and twin studies have shown that individuals can inherit a genetic predisposition for developing an autoimmune disease. The genetic heritability of autoimmune diseases can vary, though. For example, Crohn’s disease, Rheumatoid arthritis, and Hashimotos have a very high genetic heritability, while others, like Systemic Sclerosis, have low genetic heritability. (*)
Several environmental agents have been found to increase the risk of developing autoimmune diseases. Some of these possible environmental exposures include mercury, smoking, pesticides, air pollution, and tetrachloroethene (a chemical used in dry cleaning). Increasing oxidative stress has been suggested as a possible mechanism by which these exposures can play a role in the development of autoimmune diseases. (*)
Retrospective studies show that 80% of individuals report high levels of stress prior to the onset of an autoimmune disease. The research is clear that stress is no friend of the immune system. The Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal (HPA) Axis releases glucocorticoids like cortisol that are known to affect the function of the immune system. (*, *)
Exposure to infectious organisms may induce the development or exacerbation of autoimmune diseases. For example, associations between SLE and both EBV and CMV have been observed. One way in which bacteria and viruses are thought to influence autoimmunity is through a process called molecular mimicry, in which foreign substances have a very similar structure to substances in the body, which confuses the immune system.
Association between parasitic infections and autoimmune disease are frequently reported studies. The problem is that traditional medicine does not focus on these triggers, it only focuses on managing the disease. (*)
The different microorganisms that reside in the gastrointestinal tract, known as the microbiome, play an important role in influencing and shaping the immune system. Some commensal bacteria support the development of certain immune cells, called regulatory T cells, that help to control immune responses and can prevent autoimmunity. Other commensal bacteria can promote the activity of immune cells involved in inflammation. Alterations of the microbiome (dysbiosis) have been reported in autoimmune diseases. (*, *)
The lining of the gastrointestinal tract should be a semi-permeable barrier. This means it allows for the transport of water and nutrients but prevents partially digested food particles, toxins, and microbes from leaving the intestines. In cases of intestinal permeability, or leaky gut, these substances can enter the body and promote inflammation. Research in this area also supports that intestinal permeability increases the risk of developing an autoimmune disease. (*)
Diagnosing an autoimmune disease can often take longer than diagnosing other health conditions because the symptoms overlap with many other diseases (*). Certain blood tests can be helpful in diagnosing autoimmune conditions. Functional medicine tests can provide additional information about underlying causes contributing to immune system dysregulation. At DrHagmeyer.com we offer a variety of tests that will shed light on your autoimmune disease.
At Dr Hagmeyer.com We offer a number of Functional medicine tests that can help pinpoint how to best support your body when suffering from the symptoms of Autoimmunity. Which tests you need are determined once we have reviewed your case.
Functional stool testing provides a window into the health of your microbiome. 80% of your immune system is in your gut and problems in the gut can be an autoimmune trigger for many. Our functional stool test evaluates, markers of intestinal inflammation, and markers of digestion and absorption. This test is also useful in identifying any dysbiosis or bacterial, viral, or parasitic infections that can contribute to immune dysfunction and inflammation. Zonulin, a marker of intestinal permeability (Leaky Gut), is also measured.
Many of our patients report that after environmental exposure they began experiencing the early signs of their autoimmune disease. For our patients who have a history of environmental toxin exposure, our office offers testing for heavy metals, toxin exposure, and the immune system’s response to these toxins. Environmental Toxins testing measures different toxicants, including markers of pesticide exposure as well as the influence of phthalates, plastics, BPA, aflatoxins, and more.
As discussed earlier, certain viral infections have been associated with an increased risk of developing and triggering autoimmune disease. The Viral Screen tests for 29 different pathogens including candida, molds, bacteria, parasites, viruses, and Lyme disease – all of these can be triggers for autoimmune, digestion, and other chronic health problems.
The Adrenocortex Stress Profile measures cortisol and DHEA through multiple saliva samples throughout the day to demonstrate the diurnal rhythm of cortisol and diagnose any HPA axis dysfunction due to chronic high stress.
Many studies show that autoimmune antibodies can be elevated in the blood many years before symptoms occur(*). Multiple Autoimmune Reactivity Screen measures predictive antibodies for certain diseases and identifies potential tissue damage in various body organs.
If detected early, natural and/or medical interventions can begin in order to minimize long-term illness and promote a better quality of life.
24 different autoimmune antibodies against your body’s organs are tested in our autoantibodies testing panel. Due to the fact that more than 40% of those with auto-antibodies to one organ have auto-antibodies to other organs and tissues of the body, this is an ideal test for anyone who has an autoimmune condition already or anyone with a family history of autoimmune problems.
Elevated auto antibodies, known as Predictive Antibodies, are measurable up to ten years before the clinical onset of the disease. Early identification of autoimmunity can help to possibly stop or reverse disease progression.
This is a good test for patients concerned about their future risk of developing autoimmune diseases and who want to be proactive.
This is a phrase that we hear over and over on our discovery calls. Many patients feel like they’ve done everything that they can to get better. Within a few short minutes, it’s clear that there were many stones still left unturned. When a person submits to having “tried everything” they subconsciously submit to the idea that nothing more can be done. Most people we speak to have never had the right functional lab testing, a comprehensive timeline history, or the right guidance to ensure success. This is where we feel most illnesses and failed attempts to heal stem from. Chances are there are many aspects of your health that have not been fully explored.
The prevalence of autoimmune diseases is increasing. These diseases are usually chronic in nature, and there are significant costs and potential pitfalls associated with conventional treatments. Functional medicine testing and treatment protocols provide additional therapeutic avenues for a more holistic approach to care to improve the quality of life in patients diagnosed with autoimmune diseases.
I developed This Autoimmune Program to be the most comprehensive, practical, and affordable healthcare strategy available. Its focus is on compassionate healing.
Set up a time to speak with me and let’s figure out if the Autoimmune Restart program is the right next step for you.