Brain Health: Testing Your Neurotransmitters

Dr. Samantha Gray, ND RAc

Neurotransmitters are unique chemicals that facilitate the transmission of signals or messages throughout the body. Neurotransmitters are particularly active in the brain to influence and regulate a wide range of processes such as mental performance, emotions, pain response and energy levels. Neurotransmitters are the brain’s chemical messengers, facilitating communication among the body’s glands, organs, and muscles. Numerous clinical studies have shown that inadequate neurotransmitter function has a profound influence on overall health and well-being. In fact, imbalances in certain neurotransmitters are associated with most of the prevalent symptoms and conditions seen by naturopathic physicians.

The following conditions and symptoms can be related to neurotransmitter imbalances in the brain:

  • Mood disorders; depression, anxiety
  • Adrenal dysfunction; fatigue, insomnia
  • Loss of mental focus; ADD, ADHD, cognitive fog
  • Addiction and dependency
  • Hormonal imbalances;  low libido
  • Loss of appetite control; insulin resistance

Compounding these symptoms of imbalance is the wide use of substances such as caffeine, alcohol and nicotine. These substances can contribute to neurotransmitter depletion. Paradoxically they are often used in an attempt to overcome the very symptoms they are making worse.

Testing neurotransmitter imbalances with a simple, noninvasive urine test provides a tool to understand an individual’s unique neurotransmitter status.  The Urinary Neurotransmitter Test assesses six major neurotransmitters including: Serotonin, GABA, Dopamine, Norepinephrine, Epinephrine and Glutamate. Imbalances in urinary neurotransmitter levels are associated with altered neurotransmitter metabolism throughout the body.  Precise neurotransmitter imbalances become clear and can then be addressed with natural remedies, diet, and lifestyle interventions.

If you are suffering from symptoms suggestive of neurotransmitter imbalance such as anxiety, depression, insomnia, brain fog or fatigue, ask your naturopathic physician about Urinary Neurotransmitter Testing.  Identifying the unique status of your neurotransmitters can help to identify the source of your concerns and thereby guide treatment for lasting improvement.