Dried urine take home tests are available for Organic Acid Testing (OAT), which is a measurement of the breakdown product of nervous system chemicals (neurotransmitters). Laboratory results will guide clinical decisions with clarity and focus.

The tests collect the urine breakdown products of serotonin, dopamine, GABA, epinephrine, norepinephrine, glutamate, melatonin, cortisol, estrogens, progesterone, androgens and more. The kit is shipped and the lab company runs the tests and provides the results back to the doctor. Then the doctor will discuss your results and together you can make a plan going forward.  

When it comes to treatment, your gut health makes a difference. Many factors contribute to disruption in your delicate balance. Poor diet, stress, environmental factors, lack of or too much exercise and sleep, stimulants, genetics, even medications can deplete and offset the harmony. 

It is undeniable the connection your gut health has with your mood. Many books and articles have been written on the gut-brain axis. This is just a scratch at the surface. There is such an intertwined relationship between the neurotransmitters and hormones made in the gut, the brain and other organs, that it is difficult to tease apart. They are a moving target. There are times when I feel like I need hip waiters to be able to get down into all the swampy details. Then I get to a point where I realize that the best thing likely is to set the stage for the body to take care of this itself.

Check each of the following that apply to you:

  • I wake feeling unrested
  • Sleep is difficult for me
  • I am always tired, fatigued or lack lustre for life
  • Concentration and focus are a challenge
  • My motivation is low
  • I am always forgetting things
  • I am often irritable and grumpy
  • My sex drive is low
  • Weight control is difficult and my love handles or muffin top are embarrassing
  • Hormones drive me crazy (PMS, menopause)

If you checked three of more of these things, you might want to measure your mood!

 


[1] Clarke, G., Stilling, R. M., Kennedy, P. J., Stanton, C., Cryan, J. F., & Dinan, T. G. (2014). Minireview: Gut microbiota: the neglected endocrine organ. Molecular endocrinology (Baltimore, Md.)28(8), 1221–1238. https://doi.org/10.1210/me.2014-1108

[2] Reigstad, C. S., Salmonson, C. E., Rainey, J. F., 3rd, Szurszewski, J. H., Linden, D. R., Sonnenburg, J. L., Farrugia, G., & Kashyap, P. C. (2015). Gut microbes promote colonic serotonin production through an effect of short-chain fatty acids on enterochromaffin cells. FASEB journal : official publication of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology29(4), 1395–1403. https://doi.org/10.1096/fj.14-259598

[3] Reigstad, C. S., Salmonson, C. E., Rainey, J. F., 3rd, Szurszewski, J. H., Linden, D. R., Sonnenburg, J. L., Farrugia, G., & Kashyap, P. C. (2015). Gut microbes promote colonic serotonin production through an effect of short-chain fatty acids on enterochromaffin cells. FASEB journal : official publication of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology29(4), 1395–1403. https://doi.org/10.1096/fj.14-259598

[4] O’Mahony, S. M., Clarke, G., Borre, Y. E., Dinan, T. G., & Cryan, J. F. (2015). Serotonin, tryptophan metabolism and the brain-gut-microbiome axis. Behavioural brain research277, 32–48. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bbr.2014.07.027

More Stories
The good fight