Dr. Katelynn Nardulli DC, FDNP
Function versus Feeling
Health is not merely the lack of disease; health is when your body is functioning optimally.
What do you think of when you think of good health? Most of us think about feeling good and looking good - we think of someone with no aches or pains and possibly six pack abs. But what if i told you that good health goes deeper than that? What if I told you that good health happens from the inside out and is really dependent on the function of every cell, tissue and organ within the body and it has nothing to do with the six pack abs? Would you view your health differently?
Let’s break this down with an example. Your liver is an organ within the body and it’s often called the “grandfather organ” because of how many vital processes it performs. In order for the liver to function optimally, the cells within the liver need to be healthy. A healthy liver with healthy cells means good detoxification within the body. Everyday the liver filters our blood to remove toxins and maintain a healthy working environment for all other organs. If the liver is congested and not functioning properly, toxins can build-up and lead to other serious health problems such as hormonal imbalances or blood sugar imbalances, just to name a few. This domino effect can go undetected for a long time in some individuals before symptoms ever arise and they start to actually feel sick. Now you hopefully see how a person could feel fine for a long time but not really be in good health because their body is actually not functioning optimally.
As a Chiropractor and Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Practitioner, I always educate and empower my patients to focus on how the body is functioning in addition to how it is feeling. Of course, I want my patient to feel their best and we certainly discuss symptoms and health challenges that they may be facing. But treatment is always focused on getting to the root cause of those symptoms and improving the function of the body so that patients can truly achieve health and wellness from the inside out - the kind of health that is long lasting.
How can Feelings be deceiving? Symptoms can be deceiving because sometimes they can be far removed from the actual source of dysfunction. For example, severe headaches and migraines can be due to poor gut health - the head and gut are two systems of the body that are anatomically very far apart but one can certainly affect the other. Another reason symptoms can be deceiving is because they are often the last signal to show up and the first one to go away when the body fails to function properly. For example, if the low back is out of alignment for an extended period of time, osteoarthritis will develop. An individual may have no back pain or symptoms for years, although they are out of alignment and osteoarthritis is slowly developing. Only when the joint degeneration progresses to a severe state, eventually leading to a disc injury, is when the pain may finally appear.
How do I evaluate Function? The brain controls all other bodily functions, as a Chiropractor I evaluate the function of the spine and nervous system so that the brain is able to communicate with the body free of interference. This explains why a healthy nervous system is essential for all other systems of the body to function optimally and it should always be evaluated. As a Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Practitioner, I also evaluate function by using specific functional lab tests to evaluate the hormones, immune system, minerals, detoxification, digestions, thyroid and much more. Clinical correlation between functional lab tests and a detailed health history are used to identify the root cause of ongoing health challenges.
As we move into spring and you consider your health, think of it from the inside out. And remember that health is not merely the lack of disease; health is when your body is functioning optimally. Get evaluated by your chiropractor or functional practitioner to determine if you’re functioning as good as you’re feeling!