Why We Use a 24-Hour Nutritional Urine Analysis As Our Primary Screening
The 24-hour urine analysis provides a direct window into digestive competence, digestive enzyme reserves, nutritional and body chemistry status.
This includes readings on levels of bowel toxicity, pH, kidney and liver function, vitamin C, calcium/ magnesium, trace minerals, and other essential nutrients, fat storing or muscle building, and how the body is digesting and utilizing proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. A standard blood test can often read “normal” even if a patient is becoming sick or already ill; it doesn’t always reveal the true biochemical status. However, specific urine analysis tests can indicate predispositions for diseases long before they manifest and show us why a person may have multiple, even confusing symptoms, many founded on digestive problems.
Do you ever suffer from stomach upset, heartburn, acid indigestion, bloating, gas, nausea, burping, diarrhea, constipation, hiatal hernia, gastritis or ulcers? Do you know that the majority of these cases are caused by enzyme deficiency? From the sediment test, we can see exactly which foods are being digested and which aren’t and what specific ratio of digestive food enzymes or enzyme combination formula is needed to correct this imbalance.
What can be measured in a 24-hour urine analysis test ?
There are four food enzymes required for bringing about optimal digestion and assimilation of nutrients, reducing stomach acidity and discomfort, restoring appetite, and assisting in balancing the body’s natural pH (acid/base) balance: Lipase for fats, protease for protein, amylase for carbohydrates, and cellulase for fiber.
1. Fats and fat-soluble vitamins are digested by lipase enzymes. People deficient in lipase enzymes have a tendency towards:
- High cholesterol, high triglycerides, difficulty losing weight, diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
Do you know that poor digestion of fats can cause a deficiency in essential fatty acids (EFA’s)? EFA’s take lubrication and moisture to the skin, preventing dryness; joints, preventing inflammation; and cardiovascular system, preventing heart disease. EFA’s bind oxygen to hemoglobin increasing oxygenation and circulation, which definitely decreases coldness in the hands and feet.
2. Poor digestion of proteins, either due to a deficiency of protease enzymes, or an imbalance in pH can create a variety of weaknesses or disease states, including:
- Loss of muscle mass (muscle wasting or breakdown and increase of fatty deposits).
- Poor recovery time after exercise.
- Hypoglycemia (blood sugar imbalances, sugar cravings, or mood swings).
- Poor utilization of calcium/magnesium. These minerals must bond with amino acids (proteins) to be fully assimilated for bone strength (prevention of osteoporosis, and arthritis); and calming the nervous system (prevention of anxiety, irritability, and insomnia).
3. Poor digestion of Carbohydrates, sugars and starches, are caused by a deficiency in amylase enzymes, which can create symptoms such as:
- Abscesses, infections, and inflammation.
- Skin conditions, including eczema, psoriasis, hives, dermatitis, and herpes.
- Asthma, and emphysema (may be exacerbated by amylase deficiency).
4. Poor digestion of Fiber or Plant Substances are caused by a deficiency in cellulase enzymes (due to congenital defect or lack of raw food in the diet) and may cause a person to experience malabsorption syndrome:
- Increased sugar, dairy, gluten (wheat, oats, rye, barley) intolerance or allergy, which is associated with celiac disease, or Crohn’s disease.
- Abnormal gas, pain, and bloating.
- Impaired absorption of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals.
Calcium and Magnesium
The optimal levels and the correct ratio of calcium and magnesium are needed to support the skeletal, muscular, and nervous system. An imbalance in either can create anxiety, nervousness, irritability, insomnia, muscle tension, spasms, cramps, low back pain, constipation, hypertension, or heart palpitations.
Measuring Vitamin C
Optimal levels of vitamin C are needed in maintaining healthy connective tissue, adrenal glands, red blood cells and capillary walls. Vitamin C deficiency can cause bruising, joint pain, stiffness, gum disorders, lowered resistance to infections, slow healing of wounds and fractures, impaired digestion, shortness of breath, adrenal insufficiency, sore throat, laryngitis, tonsillitis, scurvy, weakness, aching joints, loss of bone mass, and tissue and collagen disorders.
Electrolytes & Trace Minerals
A deficiency in electrolytes can cause low energy, significant stress in brain, nerve and muscular function. Electrolyte deficiencies increase edema, bloating, water retention and even cardiac arrhythmia (irregular heartbeat). A deficiency in electrolytes can also cause thyroid stress creating thickening and coarsening of the skin and other body tissues, obesity, hair loss, sensitivity to cold, muscle weakness, mental dullness, circulation problems such as cold hands and feet, edema, bruising, and increase in blood lipids and cholesterol.
Colon toxicity or Indican Colon toxicity is caused by poor digestion, constipation, exposure to excessive chemicals in the water, food, and air, or drugs, yeast/candida, parasites or abnormal flora in the gut, and can be recognized in the urine analysis. Partially digested food may directly enter the blood, causing allergic food reactions. Undigested food may never be utilized by the body, instead it may decompose (rot) in the colon producing highly toxic substances which are then reabsorbed into the blood. This toxicity can present symptoms ranging from gas, diarrhea, constipation, bad breath, bloating, weight gain, allergies, asthma, arthritis, headaches, skin conditions, nervous system problems, and colon toxicity which are directly associated with low back pain and sciatica.
Digestive competency is fundamental to good health; digestive problems can create numerous health conditions. Once you know how a person is digesting foods, then precise supplementation with enzymes and nutrients can bring about rapid and permanent beneficial changes in numerous symptoms from fatigue, muscle pain, anxiety, headaches, and depression to indigestion, insomnia, hormonal imbalances and yeast infections. In correlating the levels of enzymes and nutrients with health problems, we look for underlying chemical imbalances, which are produced by stress.
The body doesn’t care what kind of stress it has-biochemical, emotional, nutritional, environmental, or financial — It is all an energy drain. However, the human body is miraculous. It has an amazing ability to heal once you eliminate the sources of stress. We never say that enzymes or nutrients are magic bullets or that we’re going to “cure” anything. Rather, we say, we will build up your enzyme and nutrient reserve, improve your digestion, balance body chemistry, detoxify the body and then watch many of the symptoms disappear as the body’s innate wisdom takes charge. Everyone has positive changes in their body chemistry if they follow a specific recommended enzyme supplementation protocol for a period of 3-5 months.
How do we correlate digestive problems with other symptoms?
This is accomplished by tracking the nutritional profile and body chemistry changes measured in a 24-hour urine analysis. This analysis provides a direct window into how well or poorly your digestive process is operating. These can include readings on levels of bowel toxicity, pH, kidney and liver function, vitamin C, calcium/ magnesium, trace minerals, and other essential nutrients, fat storing or muscle building, and how the body is digesting and utilizing proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. A standard blood test can often read “normal” even if a patient is becoming sick or already ill; it doesn’t always reveal the true biochemical status. However, specific urine analysis tests can indicate predispositions for diseases long before they manifest and show us why a person may have multiple, even confusing, symptoms, many founded on digestive problems.
The exciting thing is, even with the wide variety of body chemistry imbalances that can be measured in the urine analysis, there are specific enzyme/nutrient formulations that can correct any of the combined biochemical imbalances or patterns. The first thing we check is digestive competence because over 90% either have digestion problems or digest less than optimally. If your digestion is not functioning well, it doesn’t matter how good the food you eat is or how high the quality of supplements you take. If you can’t assimilate the nutrients, the body becomes deficient- not to mention the putrefaction and toxins that result from this poor digestion.
There are three main factors the body needs for optimal digestion: enzymes, restoring healthy bowel flora (acidophilus), and the correct pH.
If you lack any of these, the foods you eat are prone to ferment and putrefy creating acid indigestion, gas, bloating, diarrhea, or constipation. Even worse, the toxins from poorly digested food can migrate into your bloodstream, creating a body-wide state of toxicity.
After a person’s chemistry is balanced, because this is the body’s natural state, it should want to remain balanced. At this point in our program we usually only recommend ‘maintenance’ nutrients to address specific stresses or nutritional requirements unique to each person. A very important concept we teach each patient is that each person has a unique chemical makeup, chemical and nutritional imbalances and deficiencies, and daily requirements for the 120 nutrients our bodies require to be able to express optimal health. These requirements depend upon a person’s age, sex, genetics, occupation, stress levels, lifestyle, diet, habits, addictions, and exposure to environmental toxins.
Our bodies have an enormous capacity for self-healing once given the essential nutrients required for maintenance, repair, regeneration, and balancing of the chemistry. However, you can eat the most nutritious food and take supplemental vitamins and minerals, but if you are not fully digesting and assimilating them, or your stress factors are using up all your reserves, your efforts are to no avail. It is for this main reason that we choose to specialize in enzyme therapy.
Enzymes unlock nutrients from food and supplements, and in most cases are a key to health, insuring complete and optimal digestion and maximum cellular absorption.
At the root of all metabolic processes are enzymes. Not a single cellular reaction can occur without enzymes. Dr. Edward Howell, the renowned researcher, (1924-1980) describes enzymes as follows: “They are the manual workers that build our body from proteins, carbohydrates, and fats, just as construction workers build our home.”
You may have all the raw material with which to build, but without the workers (enzymes) you cannot even begin.” Thus, the program that we offer is a comprehensive nutritional assessment and protocols for enzyme supplementation. After assessing a person’s diet, history, and body chemistry, we use my clinical judgment to help my patients prioritize the different levels of imbalance, and show how they are connected to a person’s symptoms.
Our nutritional protocols, depending upon what we see and/or due to the chronicity of the person’s imbalances, can be simple and involve only a few nutrients or can be complex and require numerous nutrients and more time to achieve the desired results. There are certain key principles we address with every patient, depending on their situation:
Improving digestion with specific plant-based enzyme formulas to increase the amount of nutrients assimilated from food.
- Replenishing specific nutrients of which the person is deficient.
- Rebalancing body chemistry, and pH.
- Assisting in strengthening and rebuilding specific glandular/organ systems (adrenal, thyroid, etc)
- Assisting in detoxifying the colon, liver, lymphatics, and cellular systems.
To address digestive problems, it is important not to treat symptoms, but rather to focus on what is setting the person up for poor digestion and bowel toxicity. We have been fortunate in helping people balance their body chemistry by recommending certain specific nutritional supplement protocols, unique for each person’s imbalances. By reviewing a person’s body chemistry, various common denominators between a person’s body chemistry imbalances and nutritional deficiencies.
We tell everyone, “We don’t treat symptoms or treat disease states, we look for underlying chemistry imbalances or nutritional deficiencies – the actual cause of so many conditions, symptoms, and diagnosed disease states.” It can take years for chronic chemistry imbalances to manifest as symptoms of disease, and yet it can take as little as three to six months on a specific nutritional program to bring the chemistry back into normal ranges. Our program addresses underlying nutritional and chemical causes. When these causes are removed, the body, in most cases, knows how to heal.