Nutrition can be a healthy addition to your chiropractic or multidisciplinary practice and help your patients achieve greater well-being. Nutrition is low-cost, easy to implement and can make your treatments more effective. A happy, healthy patient will refer friends and family.
It has never been easier to test for the deficiencies or nutritional needs of your patients. Nutrition companies have classes to teach you about using their products to help your patients. Many have entire programs with CLIA (Clinical Laboratory Inprovement Act) waived test kits, blood work analysis, muscle testing programs or even extensive patient questionnaires designed to allow you to develop a logical approach in adding nutrition to a patient treatment program. All of these make it very easy to use nutrition in a busy practice. The products have been extensively researched and compiled to treat many specific disorders/diagnoses, such as formulas for degenerative joint disease, fibromyalgia, hypercholesterolemia etc. More importantly, you can learn how to augment many patients current treatment regimens with nutrition.
We have a multidisciplinary team in my practice and see a variety of health issues on a daily basis ranging from musculoskeletal to internal medicine. Nutrition is extremely important to the recovery of musculoskeletal patients. Many chemical processes can be given assistance; collagen fibers need extra vitamin C; minerals such as magnesium and manganese, protein, also B-complex, glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate are perfect to help these patients in their recovery. Fibromyalgia patients, as well as others with any form of fibrous tissue, scar tissue or chronic musculoskeletal problems can benefit from systemic enzyme therapy. And how about the many patients on some of the prescription acid blockers for digestive upsets. A digestive enzyme could get to the root of the problem and your patient may find the problems of indigestion are over. Homeopathic remedies are my favorite with pediatric and pregnant patients, because of the safety and effectiveness of these products.
Many times, too, we are called upon to help treat and council nutrition with diabetic patients. Some of the many demands made on the bodies of diabetics include poor healing, sugar handling issues, early onset of artherosclerosis and cardiomyopathy complications. These individuals need extensive nutritional help, not only with portion control and carbohydrate monitoring, but also the use of B-complex, zinc, CoQ10 and chromium, to name just a few nutrients. Patients who are on some form of cardiac or hypertension medication can be educated about the benefits of supplementation with Co-enzyme Q10. This vital nutrient is depleted from the body by these life-saving medications.
The use of nutrition in my practice developed in an eclectic manner. Over the years we found products and brands that work well, are tolerated well by patients and are reasonable in cost. I look for products that are sold only in physicians’ offices, so I don’t compete with the local health food stores. We have been able to utilize many of the nutritional supplements with patients because of new testing procedures that allowed us to diagnose or detect some deficiencies.
Nutrition can be used to effectively treat or co-manage every health issue that walks in your door! The addition of nutrients to your practice will add to the health of your patients and their families. This will translate into greater income for your office, more regular follow up with patients and many more referrals. It is a daily occurrence for a patient to come to my facility and ask to be evaluated and treated medically or with chiropractic, and to end up being treated nutritionally also. The patient has a happier, healthier outcome and a real plan for wellness when they are finished with their visit.
Most patients are interested in nutrition and supplements, but need educated assistance and products they can be assured are safe. Most health food stores don’t provide the level of help they require. You can easily fill this need for them. Get some education on the implementation of these nutritional products and the tests for deficiencies and nutritional indicators. It’s simple, fun, helpful to your patients and profitable for the practice. TAC
Dr. Lupo is the president and clinic director of First Care Injury Centers for urgent care and physical medicine in Tampa, Florida. He is a 1985 graduate from Life Chiropractic College. He is a senior consultant for Practice Perfect, one of the nations most reputable and largest consulting firms for holistic DC/MD/PT integrated services. He can be reached at