Friday, September 11, 2015

Daniel's Health: The Big Picture

Daniel being silly
For those of you that follow me on Facebook or interact often with us in real life, you know that for about one and a half years now, we've had an extremely difficult time with our fourth child Daniel.  Somewhere around his first birthday, he started getting sick a great deal (mostly colds and ear infections) which led to a few rounds of antibiotics.  As time went on, I (Terra) noticed more and more things that seemed out of place with him.  He was struggling with severe bouts of anger, head-banging, being overwhelmed very easily by certain noises/situations, having a very difficult time falling asleep, was behind in his speech, cried a great portion of the day and was not interacting well with his siblings.  I describe him as a two year old times ten.  On the more obvious health front, I learned when he was around six months old (thanks to a rash that refused to go away), he was not tolerating dairy products and we promptly removed those from his diet.  To this day, he's never had a solid stool.  Because of his digestive issues, we also preventatively took him off gluten as both James and I, as well as the three oldest kids have known gluten-sensitivity.  He recently began occupational therapy to particularly deal with symptoms of Sensory Processing Disorder.  In addition, we sought out the help of a local functional medicine practitioner for more answers.  And that is what this post will address.

The first and most obvious things that stood out to me in his lab work were regarding his stool test.
Not cool.
There were two markers of inflammation and then a note that he is not properly digesting fats.  The good news is that there are no infections, parasites, overgrowths of bacteria, etc.  He also has very low diversity of gut bacteria (the higher the better).  His IgA numbers on this test and two others show that he is definitely fighting some sort of allergic reaction.  We've already delved into many different allergen testings (including IgA, IgG and minimal IgE) but we're going to have one more (the traditional skin prick/scratch test) to add environmental allergens to the list.  His food sensitivity test showed that he has developed a reaction to eggs now and considering he had those 3-4 days per week, removing those from he diet may help some as well.  So he's currently avoiding gluten, dairy and eggs.

The second glaring problem was with his nutrient profile.  Let me start by saying that we eat a pretty clean, good quality, real food diet the majority of the time.  Daniel tends to eat fairly well and we do supplement with specific nutrients.  We had to stop supplementation for one week prior to these tests.  He was severely deficient in many vitamins/antioxidants/etc (see images for some of those details).  His tests show a lot of oxidative stress.  Apparently he also has a need for pancreatic enzymes, at least temporarily.  He's not detoxing well so that doesn't help.  On the positive side, we've found that some minor supplementing with melatonin has really helped him to be able to fall asleep in the evenings.
Look at all that terrible red and quite a bit of yellow too!



*THIS IS DEFINITELY NOT PRETTY!

As far as genetics are concerned, he inherited his dad's MTHFR C677T which affects the way his body processes certain vitamins and such (especially those B vitamins you saw above).  That may be a piece of this puzzle.  He has many heterozygous methylation SNPs.  There are a few SNPs that affect the type of B12 he can process as well as a lessened ability to keep healthy gut bacteria thanks to mutations within FUT2.  He also has mild histamine findings (like my own struggles) that we may need to monitor over time.  He may have issues with sulfur but we're following through with some urine testing to decide if he's actually expressing those genetics yet or not.

Fortunately most of his other tests were perfectly normal (things like thyroid and such).  There were no excess heavy metals or lead issues.  The is a little bit of an elevated copper to zinc ratio and a mild anemia.  The good news is that the doctor thinks that many of these things can certainly addressed and hopefully corrected.  He said that the glaring nutrient deficiencies can definitely cause neurotransmitter imbalances.  He made recommendations for very specific supplementation to help with the big deficiencies and genetic details.  He's hopeful that adding the digestive enzymes will help him better break down the fats and absorb what he needs to as well.  We're continuing to work on the probiotic supplementation, adding prebiotics, and getting good fermented foods in him as we're able.  Once our new insurance kicks in for James' job change, he'll have the additional allergen testing and see where we're at there.  The doctor feels confident that addressing these issues will get us on the path to healing.  He says it could take as long as six months to see bigger results.  With a combination of these things and help from our awesome Occupational Therapist - Lord, I pray we see results!

Until next time...

Take care,
Terra

P.S.  My health updates are coming soon as well. ;)

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Things are coming along. Great blog. :) good health to your family.