NaturalStart offers group visits for those who are on a budget and/or would only like targeted treatment. Group visits include up to 10 patients and consist of an hour of educational information regarding the specific topic for the group visit, followed by individual doctor's visits with the naturopathic doctors to discuss the patient's specific labs. The group visits we are currently offering are the "Are Your Hidden Food Allergies Causing Chronic Symptoms?" and "Understanding your Genetics" group visits. See below for more information.
Are Your Hidden Food Allergies Causing Chronic Symptoms?
It is often aparent when someone has an allergy. The allergy sufferer will have physical symptoms such as headache, vomiting, rashes, migraines, asthma, etc. immediately after being exposed to an allergen. These allergies are termed "immediate" allergic reactions, and as the name implies, an immediate food reaction can occur within 3 hours after digestion. The reaction is caused by the presence of a high IgE antibody level in the blood, which sets off an immediate allergic response. Examples of symptoms can be rashes after eating shrimp or headache after drinking wine.
What most people don't know, however, is that there is another class of food reactions, called food intolerances or delayed food reactions. Delayed food reactions can occur up to several days after ingestion of the reactive food, making it difficult to link one’s symptom to the food eaten several days ago. Such hidden allergies are often the cause of many “chronic symptoms.” The immune response to delayed food reactions are often caused by antibodies other than IgE. They are IgG, IgA, IgM and IgD. These antibodies combine with the food particles in the blood to form “immune complexes” which cause inflammatory reactions in tissues. Such inflammatory reactions can occur in any part of the body, thus producing many kinds of symptoms such as headache, eczema, joint pain, mental disorders, etc.
Over the past few years, there has been increasing awareness of many diseases and complaints that can be caused, or contributed to, by the presence of allergies.
Obviously immediate food reactions can be identified easily. However, delayed food reactions are much more difficult to diagnose. According to recent research, IgE antibodies cause immediate food reactions. Delayed food reactions are often associated with IgG4, a subclass of the whole IgG molecule.
Group Visit Information
Prior to this group visit, patients will run a food intolerance & allergy panel that uses a combination IgE and IgG4 protocol. The test can detect both IgE and/or IgG4 allergic reactions. Thus both immediate and delayed food reactions can be detected. At the group visit, Dr. Fong or Dr. Gonzalez will spend an hour discussing the science behind food intolerance and allergy and how it causes chronic symptoms. Then patients will meet with the doctors one-on-one to discuss their specific results and treatment.
Group Visit Schedule
This group visit is offered on the first and third Fridays of the month, from 2-4pm. The next available date for this group visit is November 17. We also added an additional date in November, on November 27 from 12:30-2:30pm, due to the Thanksgiving Holiday. Please call (650) 396-7117 to schedule your blood draw for your food intolerance and allergy panel and your group visit.
Cost for the blood draw and food allergy & intolerance panel are $194.85 and cost for the group visit is $195.00. You will receive a superbill for the group visit, which can be submitted to your insurance for reimbursement.
Understanding Your Functional Genetics
What is Functional Genetics?
Functional Genetics takes a look at your DNA encoding for processes in the body that control moods, concentration, focus, energy production, detoxification, immunity, digestion, heart health and much more. When there are genetic variants in these genes, they can impact your ability to make and use different nutrients critical for circulatory, immune, detoxification ability, and emotional health. Also, when there are variants in these key functional genes, the system may not be able to handle lifestyle and environmental stressors well. These variations occur when genes are passed down from parent to child and the genetic "instructions" are copied incorrectly, almost like a typo. These typos can lead to diseases such as ADHD, Autism, Alzheimer’s disease, Anxiety, Arthritis, Atherosclerosis, Cancer, Chronic fatigue, Dementia, Depression, Diabetes, Fibromyalgia, Infertility, Heart failure, Learning disorders, Multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, Stroke, and virtually all other chronic diseases. By understanding your genetic makeup, Dr. Fong can combine your genetic predispositions, with your current symptoms and labs, to understand and treat the root cause of disease.
Genetic Test Information
A simple saliva test from 23andme can measure 602,000 pieces of your DNA. Dr. Fong then takes your raw DNA information and enters this information into the MethylGenetic Nutrition Analysis software, along with your symptoms, and lab values (if available) to understand how your genetic variants are affecting your overall health.
Some of the key genes we look at code for these significant enzymes, and more:
FOLATE – stimulates cell and neurotransmitter health
SAMe – supports many bodily functions
B12 – makes blood cells and supports a healthy nervous system
GLUTATHIONE – detoxifies the body and controls inflammation
SOD – neutralizes the superoxide free radical
BH4 – supports the neurotransmitters and helps the body detox ammonia
NEUROTRANSMITTERS – important for emotional health
CHOLINE – enhances liver health
Group Visit Information
Prior to this group visit, patients should run a 23andme saliva test. Please order the saliva test at 23andme.com. The cost of this lab is $199 for one test and there are discounts if you decide to order more kits for your family members. It takes about 6-8 weeks to receive the kit and the results for the test. Once the patient receives the results, he/she will download the raw data and send this information to the office for Methylgenetic Nutrition Analysis. This analysis costs an additional $50 to run. At the group visit, Dr. Fong or Dr. Gonzalez will spend an hour discussing the science behind functional genetics and how variants cause chronic symptoms. Then patients will meet with the doctors one-on-one to discuss their specific results and treatment.
Group Visit Schedule
This group visit is offered on the first Fridays of the month, from 2-4pm. The next available date for this group visit is Friday December 1.
Cost for the 23andme kit is $199, Methylgenetic Nutrition Analysis is $50 and the group visit is $295.00. You will receive a superbill for the group visit, which can be submitted to your insurance for reimbursement.