My Energy Solution? Kidney Hats

Click for photo source site and adrenal information

One of the reasons that I started my “get healthy” journey and, in fact, one of the reasons I began this blog is that I have a very small bucket of energy to get me through the day.  I have been searching for the right mix of healthy solutions to apply to my life.  The journey has taught me a great deal but I have not felt much, if at all, better.

I decided to step outside the box again and drive over to visit an integrative and natural medicine  center.   My first appointment involved the nurse taking some basic vitals and few more tests.  Then, the doctor and myself sat in his office and discussed everything for over 90 minutes.  He suggested some tests and let me know which ones he thought were more urgent and important, and why.  Together, we decided the tests that I would take.  It felt a little odd to be out of the more paternalistic and time crunched model.

I returned to the doctor about 5 weeks later and discussed the results (another 80 minutes of discussion).  There are still some investigations to be done to get to the bottom of what, if anything may causing some of the results.

* This office does not accept insurance.  Using a cash based system offers them more freedom in how to conduct their practice.

There is a huge learning curve going on here, so I am sure to be sharing more related information as time goes on.  I am sharing this just as general information on my journey.  If you have any specific questions just ask away, or email.  The “traditional” medical doctors I have gone to over the years did not run or offer these tests.  There is controversy over some of these tests’ accuracy and over the treatments offered.  If you have experience or information on any of these topics please feel free to share!  But like Planet Fitness, this is a no judgement zone.

Test 1:  Cortisol

This test was done at home through a saliva collection at certain times throughout the day.  The result was that my level was low throughout the day…well late at night it was near the average range.  So, when I am sleeping, I am close to normal.  8)

Test 2:  Aldosterone

This test was done through a 24 hour urine collection.  Results: low

These two tests seem to indicate that my adrenal glands are not as peppy as they need to be.  The DHEA level was normal.  My treatment plan for these include 2 over the counter adrenal gland support supplements and one prescription (for the aldosterone).  My doctor told me to take some Himalayan salt to help my little adrenals get happy.  So much for low salt diet!  My dosages are very low and will be slowly elevated as/if needed.  All of the supplements should only be taken with medical supervision and knowledge of where your levels are!

Test 3:  Heavy Metals

This test was a provoked test using chelation agents.  So, they gave me an IV and I went home and collected urine.  Because of the limited collection period and because the results are compared to non-provoked standards, these results are a little more controversial.  The results:  very high Lead levels; elevated aluminum, cadmium, mercury, tin, uranium.  I was given a few choices on how to treat this.  I will likely wait a bit to see how the other meds effect me and then take the slow and steady method of taking supplements to help to detoxify.

Test 4:  MTHFR

This is a blood test.  It looks for genetic mutations.  Mutations here can take on different forms and be of varying severity.  My results were “2 copies of the same mutation A1298C.”  Bad that there are any mutations, worse that there are two; however, very good that those are the ones that I have.  There are other mutations that can lead to big problems.  For this I am taking TMG.  This may help with heart health and the body’s natural detox pathway.

The Usual Suspects:

Vitamin D:  up to 27 (Md’s goal = 60-80) – supplementing

B12:  low normal rage – supplementing

Glucose: 83, Cholesterol: 133

All the little liver, kidney, red and white cells were happy.

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20 thoughts on “My Energy Solution? Kidney Hats

    • My credit card is aching, but I think well worth it. Please let me know what you find!! At some point I will be returning to my primary care doctor to discuss the testing and treatment results. It will be interesting to see how she interprets things. Good luck! 8)

  1. It would be good if doctors could really take time to sit and look for the unobvious culprits to our feeling of unwellness… but alas they are so busy that they check the obvious tests and if they’re okay…it’s a dead end… It will be interesting to see what your primary doctor says… Diane

  2. Very interesting…I have felt for a few years that my energy level was low. They ran tests and nothing showed up. The docs said it was natural aging (maybe it is and maybe it isn’t). I used to have incredible energy. Now, not so much.

  3. Hey Katie last semester in Biology, I found the kidney the most fascinating organ. Especially those little Nephrons from 800,000 up to a million or more, and each one is like a little factory.
    A nephron eliminates wastes from the body, regulates blood volume and blood pressure, controls levels of electrolytes and metabolites, and regulates blood pH. Its functions are vital to life and are regulated by the endocrine system by hormones such as antidiuretic hormone, aldosterone, and parathyroid hormone.

    All in all I have made props to the intelligent design of the human body and especially the kidney.

  4. I am glad that you are brave enough to investigate these areas up close and personal and have the knowledge to put your experiences out here objectively. It is truly educational and door opening. Definitely better than a cup of sassafras tea.

      • My mother loved it and I liked it growing up. It was “folk” rumored to keep your blood from thickening and bless you with an overall glow of well being. You could buy small bundles of sassafras root bark at the grocery. But the FDA banned the use of safrole oil (found in the bark) when it was discovered to cause liver cancer. You can still buy it and it’s still used to make root beer, etc. but the oil has been removed.

  5. Sorry to hear you’re going through all this Katie! I went through adrenal fatigue and was near adrenal failure many years ago. I was told to eat as much salt as I liked (I was craving salt like you cannot imagine. I could have ate a saltlik!). The good news is your adrenals need salt to function, so it’s an easy fix. Bad news is they take a loooong time to heal. Took me 3 years.

    I hope you’re feeling a little better soon and the supplements work for you!

  6. After you liked my post (thanks) I clicked on this one to see what you’re up so. I have adrenal surgery from decades of 30 mg. or more a day of steroids for asthma, then when docs I changed to tried to get steroid doses down, they did to a degree. By then damage was done.I don’t know why they did a cortisol blood test on me because they said it wouldn’t be accurate with the maintenance dose of 10 mg. I have to maintain always. Interesting approach I’d love to try, but cash only isn’t an option. I have a friend who just lost 1/2 adrenal and a kidney to kidney cancer, so she’s got a battle ahead. I’ll be back. Thanks for info.

    • Wow, sounds like both of you have really been down tough roads. The no insurance option is tough on the credit card and the supplements without prescription coverage do not help. If I ever meet my out of network deductible, then my insurance will cover it. I just have to do the filing for reimbursement. Good luck to you and your friend. 8)

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