These tests will be conducted to establish whether a person has a medical condition such as anemia or hypothyroidism. The results of these tests will be used by physicians as an indicator of a deficiency or to rule out other conditions. Many people suffer from a nutritional deficiency and have not been aware that they may have one until their diet becomes malnourished, which could lead to other serious illnesses.
There are many reasons why a doctor would order a nutrition exam on a patient, including to screen out a medical condition that requires additional attention. A health care professional can then diagnose the patient of a deficiency and then recommend supplements to correct the deficiency. Often, there are some foods that are not eaten enough of in a patient’s diet, which causes a lack of nutrition and lead to other health problems. An example of this is anemia, a condition where the body’s red blood cells are deficient.
There are two common causes of anemia. The first is because an individual does not drink enough fluids, which can also be caused by malnutrition. The second is because a patient does not eat enough red meats and dairy products.
During the nutrition exam, the health care provider will conduct a physical exam and then perform laboratory tests to confirm the results. The physical exam will check the heart rate, the temperature, the skin’s response to the warmth of the body, the lungs’ ability to expand and the body’s ability to burn fat. All of these things can help with determining if a person is suffering from a deficiency and can help the physician determine what types of supplements may be necessary. Another test used in a physical exam includes measuring the level of salt, potassium, calcium and phosphorus in the body.
Once the health care provider determines the deficiency, the next step will be to discuss the importance of a supplement to help improve the patient’s diet. The health provider may prescribe a vitamin or mineral supplement to increase levels of these minerals in the bloodstream. Another recommendation can be to increase the amount of exercise that a person does on a regular basis.
It may be helpful for the person undergoing the exam to pay someone to do the exam on their behalf. This person can help make sure that the tests are administered correctly and that the doctor follows the steps outlined by the FDA for a proper exam.
Most insurance companies offer discounts for having a nutrition exam done. Health care providers are responsible for the costs of a supplement, but some insurance plans may cover at least part of the cost of a supplement ordered by a doctor.
Supplements for an individual who has been diagnosed with anemia may include a mixture of vitamins, minerals and iron. These vitamins and minerals are taken through dietary supplements, which are taken as either a pill or a powder supplement and mixed with a little water to help dissolve the pill or powder.
Blood work is always performed during a medical visit. A doctor can examine the patient’s glucose levels and determine whether a low-blood sugar condition, known as hypoglycemia, may be a problem. Also, a doctor can find out if the person’s kidneys are functioning properly so that the amount of sodium in the blood does not exceed normal levels.
Laboratory tests may be performed during the nutrition exam to determine if electrolytes, cholesterol and triglycerides are in the bloodstream. An individual may be asked to urinate on a urine collection kit to monitor the amount of sodium, potassium and calcium in the urine.
After the health care provider determines the deficiency, a dietary supplement may be prescribed to correct it. A doctor may choose to combine the supplements with a healthy diet in order to help increase energy and reduce fat from the diet.