Biochemical Individuality

by Paul Taylor, Research Scientist, BS, BA

Riordan Clinic is often asked, “Why all the nutrient testing?” There are a variety of reasons, but all focus on the biochemistry of the individual. Just as standard pharmaceuticals do not work the same on every individual or produce the same side effects; neither does every individual metabolize the foods and nutrients eaten in the exact same way. Therefore, when a patient/colearner comes to our clinic, our care providers strive to determine what the variety of symptoms is telling him or her about that individual’s unique biochemistry. Our nutrient testing gives the clinical staff a view into each unique patient.

Various medications, lifestyle choices, and medical conditions may also deplete or prevent adequate uptake of nutrients. Acid blockers or proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) such as Prilosec have been shown to block uptake of calcium and increase its loss from bone. They have also been shown to prevent the uptake of magnesium and iron especially from non-animal sources as the form of iron is changed by stomach acid to make it absorbable. Due to blocking acid production in the stomach, this class of medication may interfere with proper digestion and subsequently uptake other important nutrients. One is B12, which is protein bound and available primarily from animal protein. Without adequate stomach acid, B12 is not released from the binding protein and not available for uptake.

PPIs have also been shown to cause hypermobility of the gut, which can mimic irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and cause a misdiagnosis as IBS. Long term use can also lead to C. difficile infection in the colon, which serious and causes chronic diarrhea. While there are alternative forms of supplementation that might help mitigate the effects of PPIs, the only way to know the status is by testing or the appearance of deficiency symptoms.

In recently published findings at Riordan Clinic, many conditions increase inflammation including cancer, arthritis, and Fibromyalgia, just to name a few. One marker present in the body that gives clinical staff an indication of inflammation is C Reactive protein (CRP). While any healing wound will cause acute inflammation and thus an increase in CRP, many degenerative diseases result in a chronic inflammation state. Typically active disease increases CRP and other disease markers; while vitamin C in higher doses can reduce the CRP level and improve the prognosis of the patient. However, the levels of Vitamin C and supporting nutrients or levels of CRP and disease markers can only be determined through testing.


1. Freuman, T. (2012, Oct 30) How your reflux medication affects your bones, blood, and bowels, US News and World Report

2. Mikirova N., Rogers A., Casciari J., Taylor P, Effect of high dose intravenous ascorbic acid on the level of inflammation in patients with rheumatoid arthritis, Modern Research in Inflammation, Vol.1, No.2, 2632 (2012)

3. Mikirova NA, Casciari JJ, Riordan NH and Hunninghake RE, Clinical experience with intravenous administration of ascorbic acid: achievable levels in blood for different states of inflammation and disease in cancer patients, Journal of Translational Medicine, 2013, 11:191