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What is functional testing?

Naturopaths and functional medicine practioners will often use functional testing to gather more information about your health issues. These tests show us what is actually happening and how your body is funcitioning. It takes out the guess work.

A test is mostly non-invasive and typically involves a breath, blood, saliva, urine or stool sample. We get so much more information with these tests than conventional testing and they are done in the comfort of your own home.

Different functional tests may be used to get information for any of the following:

Digestive problems:

  • we would do a comprehensive stool analysis where a sample is taken and analysed in a lab for what bacterias, yeasts, parasites and inflammatory markers there are.
  • a lot of health issues ranging from eczema to mood disturbances and headaches can be stemming from your gut health.

Hormonal problems:

  • we can test your not just your levels but also their metabolites.
  • we can take a look at how your body is metababolising and detoxifying hormones and if you're clearing them efficiently and therefore what parts of detoxification you need help with. This is important to know because estrogen for example is linked to certain cancers so we want this to be going down the 'right' pathway and out of the body efficiently.


  • we can take a look at if your body is making enough cortisol or if it is clearing it too quickly leaving you low and exhausted.
  • we can see if you are low in B vitamins which are vital for energy production.
  • if you are not detoxifying efficiently this can affect your energy-making machinery inside your cells. We are able to see this with functional testing.

Mood or depression:

  • we can see if you are low or high in certain brain neurotransmitters and whether this is caused by inflammation or stress.

If you would like to talk to us about whether your health concerns could be clarified by a particular test, contact us here.