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What saliva can tell us about your health

Published on June 6, 2015 by Dr. Myra Reed

You probably know the most common ways your doctor monitors the health of your body—checking your vital signs (blood pressure, heart rate, and temperature), and collecting blood, urine, and even tissue samples. These are all effective tools that can tell your healthcare team more about what’s happening inside your body, but there’s more.

How familiar are you with saliva testing? If your doctor asked you to collect saliva (spit) in a container would you find that strange? The truth is that saliva can provide an accurate assessment of cortisol, and hormones-DHEAS, estrogen, progesterone and testosterone levels and help your doctor find the right treatment for some of your most nagging health symptoms including:

  • Hormone imbalances
  • Weight gain
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Adrenal fatigue
  • Brain fog
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Insomnia and much more!

Saliva testing and chronic stress

Saliva is one of the best ways to monitor your body’s main stress hormone—cortisol. Cortisol is made by the adrenal glands, two small organs that sit on top of each of your kidneys. The adrenal glands sense stress and respond with your fight or flight hormone cortisol.

This response fluctuates many times each day in response to your physical and emotional state. If you remain in a state of stress for too long, your adrenals become weak and depleted, you may begin to show signs of adrenal fatigue, and your health may suffer. In fact, researchers estimate that up to 80% of Americans may have adrenal fatigue at some point in their lives, but many traditional doctors just aren’t trained to identify or treat it.

How do I collect my saliva?

Testing is easy. When I see you in the office, I’ll give you a set of four test tubes and tell you exactly when to collect the samples. Most commonly, we need a saliva sample when you wake up in the am, before lunch, before dinner, and at bedtime. The test tubes don’t need to be refrigerated and they will fit easily in your pocket or purse. When you have the saliva samples ready, you just mail them out. Your results will be back in about in a few weeks and we will sit down together and go over the results. I’ll use that information to build a nutritional and lifestyle plan to help your body heal and get your cortisol levels back where they should be.

Saliva testing is just one tool I use to explore your health. Widely recognized as a reliable testing tool for many different conditions by the World Health Organization and National Institutes of Health, you can feel confident knowing this technology is available here in our office.

Are you ready to find out why you just can’t seem to shake the fatigue, brain fog, and food cravings? Call today and let’s find out more about how your body is responding to stress.

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