By April Segal, PharmD, APh, BCPS, Remedy Pharmacy Owner
As we wrap up our mini-series on probiotics we are very excited to announce our newest clinical test to be offered at Remedy-- Gut Microbiome Testing! Before we get into WHY we are so excited about this test, please check out our other blog posts on Probiotic Strains, Prebiotics and Probiotic Dosing.
What is Microbiome Testing
Stool testing has become a popular method for evaluating the status of an individual’s microbiome, which can be vital information to inform us on actionable recommendations to improve our health by correcting imbalanced microbiomes also called ‘dysbiosis’.
We have chosen to offer the BiomeFX test which uses a molecular testing technique. Unlike the antiquated stool culture technique, this test offers the most advanced and accurate sequencing technology, while it also explores some of the many inner functions of the gut microbiome. Microbiome testing will explore the pathogens in your gut as well as the keystone species that are crucial to overall health and the metabolic functions that rely on the gut microbiome. With these insights, you can then use the actionable nutrition, lifestyle, and supplement recommendations as a road map for improving your unique gut microbiome.
Who We Recommend Testing for
The gut microbiome is so interconnected with overall health that many people can benefit from testing. The obvious people we would recommend to have testing are those with digestive complaints, anything from loose stools, constipation, and gas or bloating. As we now know the microbiome plays a pivotal role in immune health, autoimmune conditions, and mental health. If you are suffering from a recurrent or chronic condition that is related to inflammation, autoimmunity, infection, or mental health this test could offer a new opportunity to heal by supporting a diverse and robust microbiome.
What You Will Learn
Every test comes with an in-depth analysis report and a complimentary consult with a Remedy Clinician to go over your results and help you identify actionable next steps to improve the health of your Microbiome. This includes:
Alpha vs Beta diversity - your own diversity of bacteria species, compared to that of a healthy population. The more diverse the better. Lower diversity means a less healthy microbiome. For example, low alpha-diversity suggests that your gut microbiome was recently damaged by antibiotics, environmental toxins, stress, diet, or other factors.
Keystone species - A detailed breakdown of which very specific bacteria strains are present in your gut. Knowing which keystone species you need to support can really tailor a probiotic recommendation protocol.
Screening for Pathogenic Strains - This test will analyze over 25 pathogens and measure the percentage they comprise of your gut biome. This gives a very clear picture of the nature of any dysbiosis. For example, Clostridium difficile and Bacteroides fragilis
Functional benefits - Learn how your microbiome affects your hormone balance, neurotransmitters, autoimmunity, detoxification, digestion, and disease risk.
Check out a sample report of what is included here
Order kits here or purchase in store
How Testing Works
- Purchase a microbiome testing kit at Remedy
- Take the kit home and do your sample collection (yes, poop!)
- Mail off kit
- Approximately three weeks later your results will be in, a team member from Remedy will call you to schedule your complimentary 30-minute consultation to review your results with you!
I think it is clear to say that we here believe in the power of the microbiome. The research that is coming out of this field is very exciting and we have high hopes for the results we can get for our patients when dysbiosis is addressed and corrected. If you are not in San Diego but would still like to do microbiome testing, just give us a call. Remote sessions can be scheduled as well.
Dr. April Segal, PharmD, BCPS, APh