by Joel Lopez, MD, CNS
Medications are essential for certain acute conditions. There are people who take medications for chronic symptoms, however. It’s all fine and well until side effects happen. That’s why, a person’s biochemical individuality should always be taken into account when a person has to take medications long-term. A regular review of your medications should be in order, taking into account that there’s less metabolism or excretion of medications as we age.
Fortunately, there are genomic tests available that could tell you instantly and reliably on the kind of pharmacological substances which are most suitable for you. It furthermore advises you which dose grants you optimized therapeutic success.
One such lab is called Genosense in Vienna, Austria. They have a genomic test called Pharmacosensor. This test examines carefully selected polymorphisms which lead to structural changes in proteins that strongly influence the speed of metabolism in a series of pharmacological substances and also account for the accelerated or reduced transformation of harmless precursors of given medication into highly efficient substances.
If a person is unable to do this test, then at least they should be aware of possible nutritional deficiencies their medications could cause and make sure to replenish them.
One such class of medications are the antacid or ulcer medications. Nutrient deficiencies in Vitamins B12, folic acid, Calcium, Iron and Zinc could occur with the following potential health problems: anemia,depression, birth defects, increased cardiovascular risk, cervical dysplasia, heart disease, cancer risk, osteoporosis, muscle weakness, hearing loss, tooth decay, hair loss, brittle nails, loss of sense of taste or smell, and sexual dysfunction.
Another class of meds are the cholesterol-lowering agents called “statins”. They deplete the body of Coenzyme Q10. When this happens, various cardiovascular problems, a weakened immune system and low energy could occur.
Anticonvulsants could deplete the body of Vitamins D, B1, B2, B3, B6, B12, C, Magnesium, Selenium and Zinc. Potential health issues could include osteoporosis, muscle weakness, hearing loss, tooth decay, heart and blood pressure irregularities, cervical dysplasia, anemia, hair loss, depression, dermatitis, fatigue, reduced antioxidant protection, poor wound healing and skeletal problems.
My purpose is not to alarm people who take these medications but to make them aware that an integrative approach to any medical condition yields better results. It’s a good thing that we can now check for nutritional deficiencies. One such functional test is done through Spectracell. It checks for 33 nutrient deficiencies. I love this test because it takes the guesswork out of supplementation. Better yet, most PPO’s and Medicare cover for this test.