Functional Lab Testing

Why I believe Functional Testing is so Important

Uncovering why your symptoms are happening is a key part of my process and my motto is “Test, don’t guess” for this very reason.

Optimising your health is individual to you and if imbalances are contributing to your symptoms, testing can pinpoint underlying issues and provide a focus to start addressing your unique challenges, rather than taking an educated guess (which could be wrong!).

With access to a diverse range of state-of-the-art laboratory testing methods, I can uncover what may be at the root of your symptoms or delaying your recovery. In this way, I can tailor your gut health programme and fast-track your progress.

These results then inform your personalised nutrition plan so you are more likely to start seeing positive changes in your gut health.

Many of my clients benefit from seeing their results in black and white as it gives them the answers they have been looking for and provides motivation for change.

Testing creates a benchmark from which to measure progress and monitor ongoing wellbeing for optimal health.

This page details some of the most commonly used tests but the ones that work best for you will be highly unique.

Invivo – GI EcologiX Stool Test

Our microbiome is as unique to us as our fingerprint and that is why gut health is at the core of my nutrition programmes.  Your gut microbiome is home to a diverse range of microorganisms consisting of different types of bacteria, viruses and fungi.   The presence and activity of these microorganisms are fundamental to overall health, providing the foundations of a healthy body including nutritional status, immunity, hormones, brain function, mood and stress response.

Many modern ailments can track back to poor gut function. In fact, 90% of disease can be linked to gut health.

Exposure to stress has a huge impact on the gut and results in alterations to your digestion and microbes that can lead to many gastrointestinal disorders. Microbes can also help to reduce the stress response and increase resilience.

Many other chronic illnesses including obesity, autoimmunity, diabetes, anxiety, and depression have been linked with dysfunctions of the gut microbiome.

Knowing your gut means we can manipulate the microbiome to reduce symptoms and protect from chronic illness.

Anyone with digestive issues, including IBS, constipation, diarrhoea, indigestion, acid reflux, abdominal cramping or bloating may find the Invivo – GI EcologiX Stool Test beneficial. But less obviously, it can benefit anyone with symptoms that could be caused by digestive imbalances such as fatigue, brain fog, anxiety, joint pain, cravings, poor nutritional status, stress, fatigue, autoimmunity, thyroid or hormonal imbalances.

Upgrade your gut health with this comprehensive and advanced gastrointestinal test which provides an in-depth insight into your gut health. It uses cutting-edge technology to provide a true DNA-based assessment of your gut microbiome from a single stool sample taken at home.  Key markers include digestion and absorption capacity, gut barrier function, inflammation, immune markers, commensal bacteria (beneficial and pathogenic), yeast, fungi and parasites.

DUTCH Hormone Test

Your midlife is a great time to assess your hormone health and to prevent any diseases or complications as you transition from perimenopause to menopause.  After menopause, women are at greater risk from heart disease, osteoporosis and dementia.  

This convenient at-home urine test provides a comprehensive sex hormone profile detailing sex hormone production and their metabolites. These metabolites give me a much broader picture of how your hormones are working and what might be causing your symptoms.  The test also provides a detailed assessment of your adrenal hormones and various neurotransmitter metabolites, so I can see how your body is dealing with stress.   

Anyone with symptoms such as low mood, brain fog, hot flushes, low libido, fatigue, anxiety, irritability, weight gain, PMS, heavy, painful or irregular periods or poor sleep may benefit from the DUTCH Hormone Test.

A simple and effective way to measure sex and adrenal hormones in both men and women. 

Hormonal imbalances drive a range of symptoms including fatigue, poor sleep, low mood and weight gain. 

The DUTCH test provides a comprehensive overview of your sex hormones and a fantastic breakdown of what is going on with your adrenals, stress hormones and sleep, including neurotransmitter markers. The test helps to determine your cortisol rhythm to determine whether your system is off balance. 

The benefits to you include knowing what’s going on in your body and why you are experiencing symptoms and health concerns.

Knowing this can help us to identify the root cause of your symptoms to inform a nutritional plan that is tailored to your needs and can help you feel better sooner. 

Well Person Advanced Blood Screening

Know your bloods with this comprehensive and bespoke blood panel, which looks at levels of key active energy nutrients (vitamin D, folate, iron and vitamin B12), full thyroid panel, cholesterol profile, and hormone status, alongside a full blood count, liver, kidney, and muscle health markers. It also shows key markers of inflammation, autoimmunity and diabetes risk. This blood test is available to book at a clinic or you can request to have a phlebotomy nurse visit you at home for convenience.

Anyone with ongoing symptoms such as weight gain, fatigue, constipation, anxiety, low libido, hair loss, poor nails, dry skin and high cholesterol may benefit from the Well Person Advanced Blood Screening.

Do you have optimal vitamin and mineral status? How well is your thyroid working? How are your blood sugar levels?

Imbalances in any of these areas can drive fatigue, weight gain, brain fog, poor concentration, and poor motivation and performance. When markers are out of range, it can impact many bodily systems and can lead to a variety of niggling symptoms

Chronic stress can also adversely affect vitamin and mineral status as well as the thyroid, which can deplete energy and decrease resilience.

This is a true MOT health check that provides a more comprehensive picture of your health compared to a standard NHS blood test for anyone needing a better picture of their own personal risk factors.

Knowing your bloodwork means I can specifically target your deficiencies to restore balance in your body.

Optimising key nutrients can protect you from the impact of stress, improve resilience and protect you from chronic illness.

Lifecode Gx Genetic Testing

Understand your DNA with a range of comprehensive DNA tests that report on gene variants in key biological processes that govern health and disease.  Variations in our DNA are what makes each of us unique and can have a significant impact on our health. Using cheek cells as a sample, DNA testing enables you to be proactive with your health.

I regularly use the Nervous System Report, which supports the transmission of messages around the mind and body, enabling an individual to respond to their environment. The report examines your genes, nutrient status, and lifestyle and environmental factors that can impact your nervous system and your susceptibility to stress.

Anyone interested in understanding how our genes are affected by the food we eat. This could be the missing piece of your health jigsaw puzzle!  Your genetic blueprint can be used to influence the body’s response by increasing or decreasing specific nutrients or lifestyle factors including sleep, movement, stress and environmental factors to provide a preventative, proactive and personalised approach to health.

Understanding our personal genotype can help to identify how to modulate nutrition and lifestyle changes for better health outcomes. Our DNA never changes and so the health reports inform unique nutrition and lifestyle requirements for you.

As a Lifecode Gx nutrigenomics practitioner, I am trained to look at your genetic profiles at a deeper level to consider the way individual genes work and affect each other’s responses. In this way, we take a proactive approach towards optimising your health.

I offer the following DNA health reports:

Nutrient Core, Metabolics, Hormones, Methylation, Histamine Intolerance, Detoxification, Nervous System, Thyroid Balance.

Let me help you to discover what’s driving your symptoms so we can speed up the healing process and get you feeling good again – Kal Ratcliffe

Functional testing takes all of the guesswork out of why your digestive symptoms have occurred and what needs to be done to resolve them. It’s a crucial part of my signature system for this reason as it’s so much simpler to make progress on your gut health journey when you know what we’re working with.

Being able to work with an experienced functional medicine practitioner with access to advanced functional testing and interpretations is one of the strengths of being a client in my clinic.

I can guide you to the right test(s) for you which can provide an insight into the root causes of your symptoms and allows me to accurately track your progress and create bespoke programs. I am highly trained in the interpretation of functional test results and I can help you to put together the pieces of the puzzle to bridge the gap between your symptoms and what should happen next.

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