James LaValle, RPh, CCN
Explain your background in medicine.
I have had a pretty diverse background in my training. I am a clinical pharmacist and member of the American College of Clinical Pharmacy and was an appointed adjunct associate professor for 17 years at the University of Cincinnati College of Pharmacy and acted as an instructor and preceptor at the College of Medicine. I am Board Certified in Clinical Nutrition (CCN) and serve on the Science Council. I am a Fellow of the British Institute of Homeopathy and completed a Diplomat in Homeopathic Pharmacy and Diploma in Homeopathic Medicine. I also finished an academic doctor of naturopathy from Central States College in Columbus Ohio. Last, I finished Bachelors in Pastoral Wellness and Masters in Theology. If I had to my specialty is biological and metabolic medicine. I see all types of patients. From my training, I believe that every emotion, chemical, drug or nutrient influences our receptor signaling. Metabolic shifts can be characterized and then reconciled to bring an individual back to a better state of well being by modifying and invigorating the cellular communication at the receptor level.
How did you get into this field of Metabolic, Integrative, Functional & Preventative medicine?
I started working out for sports at age 13 so I had an active interest in nutrition from my early teens. I actually was a very sickly child, in fact I thought the pink stuff (amoxicillin) and then the purple stuff (Dimetapp) were part of my daily diet. So by the time I was 20 years old I was struggling with allergies, eczema amongst other problems. I went to a doctor who evaluated me for adrenal function, food intolerances and gut dysbiosis back in 1984 right after pharmacy school. His work changed my life and I jumped into this field full time from that point.
Can you recall a patient where the influence of preventative, integrative, and functional medicine significantly altered a poor diagnosis?
I have so many cases that I could share, but I think a recent case that I have followed over the last year is a good example. An 18 year old male came to me with a history of chronic petit mal seizures over the last 8 years. He had a negative reaction to a vaccination and in addition significant accidental exposure formaldehyde. All previous attempts of nutritional and functional approaches had only aggravated his condition. He was reactive to foods, environmentally chemically sensitive, and even reacted to many dietary supplements. Through looking at detoxification pathways, applying detoxification processes including gemmotherapy (botanical) low dose homeopathy, he became seizure free over 13 months over a period. Gradually he was able to tolerate detoxification with nutritional agents. It was profound for me because of the fact that homeopathy, gemmotherapy (botanicals) and drainage complexes along with nutrition combined to resolve a very complex case. Every day I see cases that have their health transformed by applying concepts of metabolic medicine.
Where do you see the future of medicine heading?
I think the future of medicine is in the area of Lifestyle and personalization.
Information gathering from the genomic to metabolomics expression will shape the treatment plan for the individual along with a lifestyle plan. We will see an explosion in nutrition research from food to dietary supplements and the research will be based more on clustered metabolic endpoints that we are attempting modify. In other words, targeted and personalized nutrition combined with targeted drug therapy that reduces the risk of polypharmacy events.
Why should healthcare provider start the Fellowship in Metabolic & Nutritional Medicine?
I believe that studying metabolic medicine allows you to look at the patient in a new and individualized light. It empowers you as a practitioner to become a metabolic investigator and begin to unravel the complex chemistries of the patients that you see. It becomes a lifelong journey to learn the underlying metabolic shifts that drive the progression to chronic illness or hopefully enhanced health and vitality. The other piece that is very important are the relationships that you develop meeting other healthcare professionals who have transitioned from conventional practices. You learn and mentor at the same time. My best collegial relationships have happened because of my participation in MMI/A4M.