Living Well Blog: Saratoga's Holistic Health Forum

Functional Medicine & Naturopathic Medicine

In my recent blog (, I discussed the importance of treatment tailored to the individual vs. the individual tailored to a one-sized-fits all approach. The solution for me is a combination of using Naturopathic Medicine (address the cause) with functional medicine (address biochemical individuality and which natural treatment will be optimal for THAT individual). Below are two highlights from the Metametrix Institute, a functional lab that I use in my practice:

A New Measurement for Autism (Metametrix Blog, Dr. Fitzgerald)

One key intervention for both boys that resulted in a significant reduction of behavioral symptoms was the removal of bovine dairy and gluten-containing grains. Both are big problems for many kids with ASD, and their removal is a common first step.

The older boy recently started a trial of high-dose folinic acid (1mg/kg body weight). This intervention appears to have made a remarkable difference in him. Both parents noted that rather quickly after starting, his expressive language greatly improved--he began articulating his needs and desires--in a way he's never done before. (In all fairness, we cannot rule out benefit from his various other treatments. This trial, like life, wasn't controlled.)

Given the above history, and the favorable folinic acid trial, is it possible for us to form a hypothesis around a potential causative factor in this case? Yes we can. I strongly suspect that Cerebral Folate Deficiency is an underlying etiologic factor with these boys. Here's why:

The article continues on to explain how various individual bio-markers are tested to tailor an approach that suited each brother. 
Watch this Video by Dr. Lord from Metametrix on Alternative Testing for Autism (Metametrix)

This 8 minute video explains the gut-brain connection and how inflammation in the brain can affect the features of autism.


The above highlights the importance of not just addressing the cause, or treating symptoms, but addressing the individual. After all, it is more important to know what kind of person has the disease, than what disease has the person.

Fun Fact for Oil Lovers:

A highlight on Rosemary's ability to boost brain function!

Rosemary EO for mood (Therapeutic Advances in Psychopharmacology )

Here we show for the first time that performance on cognitive tasks is significantly related to concentration of absorbed 1,8-cineole following exposure to rosemary aroma, with improved performance at higher concentrations. Furthermore, these effects were found for speed and accuracy outcomes, indicating that the relationship is not describing a speed-accuracy trade off.  The relationships between 1,8-cineole levels and mood were less pronounced, but did reveal a significant negative correlation between change in contentment and plasma 1,8-cineole levels.

Conclusion: These findings suggest that compounds absorbed from rosemary aroma affect cognition and subjective state independently through different neurochemical pathways. (Moss, M. Plasma 1,8-cineole correlates with cognitive performance following exposure to rosemary essential oil aroma (abstract). Therapeutic Advances in Psychopharmacology. February 24, 2012. 2045125312436573.)

More info:

Leave a comment

Leave a Comment

Reisa Mehlman

As a New York State Licensed Aesthetician, New York State Licensed Nail Specialist, and the Director of Living Well Healing Arts Center & Spa, Reisa combines her love of spa services and healing arts to achieve optimum skin and nail health, create greater overall wellness and bring forth our optimal, individual beauty.

"I believe that the day spa should be an instant getaway; a place that is quiet without being stuffy, relaxed, elegant and yet entirely comfy. You should feel warm and welcome, surrounded by people who care about you and what they are doing. This is the environment we strive to create at Living Well Healing Arts Center & Spa. Here, you are never just the "next" number; we allow ample time for your services, offer a flexible schedule and can be reached after hours. After all, to me, spa craft is not really a business, it's a lifestyle." Read more...

About Dr. Sarah Lobisco

Dr. LoBisco has been in holistic healthcare for over 10 years. She became interested in holistic medicine when she was able to heal two herniated discs through nutrition, yoga, supplementation, and chiropractic. She has mentored with holistic practices throughout New York, Vermont, and Connecticut. In addition to her Naturopathic and Functional Medical training, Dr. LoBisco has extensive training in a variety of healing modalities, including therapeutic essential oils, nutraceuticals, herbs, whole food supplements, nutritional medicine, and mind-body therapies. She is a graduate of the accredited, four year post-graduate program in Naturopathic Medicine at the University of Bridgeport in Connecticut. This program includes clinical rotations and a demanding scientific curriculum in integrating conventional and natural medicine. Dr. LoBisco holds her license from the state of Vermont.

Dr. LoBisco is a candidate for certification in Functional Medicine through the Institute of Functional Medicine (IFM). Dr. LoBisco is also certified in Applied Kinesiology and holds a BA in psychology from SUNY Geneseo. She has contributed as an item writer for the North American Board of Naturopathic Examiners (NABNE)and has several articles that have been published in the Naturopathic Doctor News and Review Digest (NDNR) and the Townsend Letter, both physician- based journals. Dr. LoBisco is also a hired speaker on integrative medical topics for medical professionals.

Dr. LoBisco currently incorporates her training in holistic medical practices and conventional medicine through writing, researching, private practice, and through her independent contracting work for companies regarding supplements, nutraceuticals, essential oils, and medical foods. She has a small, private wellness consultation practice through telephone and Skype. Dr. LoBisco also enjoys continuing to educate and empower her readers through her blogs and social media. Her upcoming book, BreakFree Medicine, is set to release within the next year. Please inquire here for more specific information.