Skip to main contentrtttttt Skip to main content
Integrative Psychiatry

Organic Acid Testing with Mary Rondeau, ND

Why are we using organic acids?

Watch our video entitled “Organic Acid Testing” as Dr. Mary Rondeau talks about organic acids, gut dysbiosis and other topics as to why we should treat our gut first.

FULL TRANSCRIPT

So, the question to start off with this is like, why are we using organic acids? One of the big components of the Integrative Psychiatry Institute is to really bring together this disconnect – that the body cannot be separated from the mind. But we are treating mental health and the organic acids test is one tool that is really good at assessing kind of the neck down metabolic issues. And so, I just love this cartoon, because I think it really speaks to the current state of treating mental health and how we are looking to shift that.

Organic Acid Tests

  • Malabsorption markers
  • Dysbiosis markers
  • Mitochondrial function

Organic acids basically give you a functional assessment of multiple different metabolic areas. One being antioxidant status in the body, relative need for B vitamins or B vitamin deficiencies. You get some information on mineral deficiencies and amino acids. It has a section that marks for malabsorption markers. So, we’re looking at gut dysbiosis. How well is somebody absorbing food that they’re eating, as well as is there a component of elevated yeast or bacterial markers that might be contributing to the gut-brain axis and interrupting that in the context of mental health?

It’s helpful if a person has a combination of gut symptoms and mood symptoms, that this could be a really important test to give you more clues on treatment options. Depression or mood disorders that have a high fatigue component, that can be relating a lot to nutritional deficiencies, mitochondrial dysfunction, and methylation dysfunction.

If there’s been a history of chronic fatigue, or chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic infections, again, really assessing those biochemical pathways can be really helpful. And fibromyalgia would be kind of top areas that you can look at if those are going on, in addition to mood symptoms, that this test would be a good choice.

Additional Considerations: Bacterial Dysbiosis.

Diet cannot be emphasized enough, we’re going to continue to push high fiber and then the low sugar, low carbohydrates, diets rich in polyphenols, anything that gives us bright, beautiful colors are going to be really helpful in terms of boosting up the more healthy counts, especially the bifido counts of bacteria. Those are found in your fruits, veggies, your seeds and wine. And remember your fruit skins, your veggies, and your seeds are also an excellent source of fiber. So, you kind of get two birds in one stone with those dietary recommendations. The Mediterranean diet is another good option. There was a study done showing that the Mediterranean diet did help increase the healthy counts and the diversity of the bacteria in the digestive tract. So, a Mediterranean diet is good.

Additional Tips for Successful Implementation

Always treat the gut first. It’s kind of like our cardinal rule, right?

A lot of diseases begin in the gut. We’re exploring that gut-brain axis in terms of how that’s affecting mental health, so hone in on the gut.

If the gut is abnormal, treat it. Is it yeast? Is it bacterial? Is it both? Treat that.

Then after that’s done, the next phase of treatment plan is to say:
What is more predominant?
Is it more mitochondrial dysfunction?
Is it methylation concerns?
Is it just across the board deficiencies in nutrients?
Then prioritize that.

This way, the treatment plans do not become overwhelming and you can see exactly what is doing what. You started a gut treatment plan at the same time that you started them on high dose B vitamins, and you’re doing CoQ10, and you’ve just given somebody six or seven different supplements targeting spots around the whole organic acid test. They aggravate. What did they aggravate from? We don’t know. And so, you know, and if they got better, what did they get better from? We don’t know, we don’t want somebody having to take this many things forever.

So, I really recommend that, you know, a good tip for implementing this is to go section by section and just kind of move through this.

Sara Reed, MS, LMFT

Sara Reed is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and CEO of Mind’s iHealth Solutions, a digital health company that provides evidence based and culturally responsible mental health services for underserved groups. As a mental health futurist and clinical researcher, Sara examines the ways culture informs the way we diagnose and treat mental illness. Sara’s prior research work includes participation as a study therapist in psychedelic therapy research at Yale University and the University of Connecticut’s Health Center. Sara was the first Black therapist to provide MDMA-assisted psychotherapy in a clinical trial and continues to engage in ongoing advocacy work around health equity in psychedelic medicine.

https://psychiatryinstitute.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/Jeffrey-Guss.png

Jeffrey Guss, MD is a psychiatrist, psychoanalyst, and researcher with specializations in psychoanalytic therapy and the treatment of substance use disorders. He was Co-Principal Investigator and Director of Psychedelic Therapy Training for the NYU School of Medicine’s study on psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy in the treatment of cancer-related existential distress, which was published in Journal of Psychopharmacology, 2016. He currently is a study therapist in the NYU study on Psychedelic-Assisted therapy in the treatment of Alcoholism, a collaborator with Yale University’s study on psychedelic-assisted therapy for Major Depressive Disorder and a study therapist with the MAPS (Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies) study on treatment of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder with Psychedelic-Assisted Psychotherapy. 

Dr. Guss is interested in the integration of psychedelic therapies with contemporary psychoanalytic theory and has published in Studies in Gender and Sexuality and Psychoanalysis, Culture and Society. He has published (with Elizabeth Nielson, PhD) a paper on “the influence of therapists’ first had experience with psychedelics on psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy research and therapist training” in The Journal of Psychedelic Studies, August, 2018. He is an Instructor and Mentor with the California Institute of Integral Studies’ Center for Psychedelic Therapies and Supervisor in NYU’s Fellowship in Addiction Psychiatry. 

Dr. Guss maintains a private practice in New York City.

Will Van Derveer, MD

Will Van Derveer, MD is Co-Founder of Integrative Psychiatry Institute and Integrative Psychiatry Centers. Dr. Van Derveer was co-investigator on a phase 2 MAPS study of Psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy for treatment-resistant PTSD, and co-authored the publication of this study in 2018. He has also provided Psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy in two MAPS training studies. An active provider of KAP at his clinic in Boulder, CO, he has been teaching others KAP therapy for several years. Dr. Van Derveer contributed a chapter on mescaline in the 2021 "Handbook of Medical Hallucinogens" (edited by Charles Grob and Jim Grigsby). He is co-host of the Higher Practice Podcast.

Dr. Van Derveer regards unresolved emotional trauma as the most significant under-recognized root cause of psychiatric symptoms in integrative psychiatry practice, along with gut issues, hormone imbalances, inflammation, mitochondrial dysfunction, and other functional medicine challenges. He is trained in Somatic Experiencing, EMDR, Internal Family Systems, and other psychotherapy techniques. His current clinical passion is psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy, which he mentors interested doctors in providing. An avid meditator, he has been a meditation instructor since 2004.

For the past several years Dr. Van Derveer has taught psychiatrists and other psychiatric providers integrative psychiatry in a number of settings, including course directing the CU psychiatry residents’ course as well as with Scott Shannon and Janet Settle at the Psychiatry MasterClass.


Scott has been a student of consciousness since his honors thesis on that topic at the University of Arizona in the 1970s under the tutelage of Dr. Andrew Weil. Following medical school, Scott studied Jungian therapy and acupuncture while working as a primary care physician in a rural area for four years. Psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy became a facet of his practice before this medicine was scheduled in 1985. He then completed a psychiatry residency at Columbia program in New York. Scott studied cross-cultural psychiatry and completed a child/adolescent psychiatry fellowship at the University of New Mexico.

In 2010 he founded Wholeness Center in Fort Collins. This innovative clinic provides cross-disciplinary evaluation and care for all mental health concerns. Scott serves as a site Principal Investigator and therapist for the Phase III trial of psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy for PTSD sponsored by (MAPS). He has also published numerous articles about his research on (CBD) in mental health. Currently, Scott works extensively with psychedelic-assisted-psychotherapy. He lectures all over the world to professional groups interested in a deeper look at mental health issues, safer tools, and a paradigm-shifting perspective about transformative care.

Will Van Derveer, MD is co-founder of Integrative Psychiatry Institute (IPI), along with friend and colleague Keith Kurlander, MA. He co-created IPI as an expression of what he stands for. First, that anyone can heal, and second that we medical providers must embrace our own healing journeys in order to fully command our potency as healers.

Dr. Van Derveer spent the last 20 years innovating and testing a comprehensive approach to addressing psychiatric challenges which transcends the conventional model he learned in medical school at Vanderbilt University and residency at University of Colorado, while deeply engaging his own healing path.

He founded the Integrative Psychiatric Healing Center in in 2001 in Boulder, CO, where he currently practices. Dr. Van Derveer regards unresolved emotional trauma as the most significant root cause of psychiatric symptoms in integrative psychiatry practice, along with gut issues, hormone imbalances, inflammation, mitochondrial dysfunction, and other functional medicine challenges. He is trained in Somatic Experiencing, EMDR, Internal Family Systems, and other psychotherapy techniques. His current clinical passion is psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy, which he mentors interested doctors in providing. An avid meditator, he has been a meditation instructor since 2004.

For the past several years Dr. Van Derveer has taught psychiatrists and other psychiatric providers integrative psychiatry in a number of settings, including course directing the CU psychiatry residents’ course as well as with Scott Shannon and Janet Settle at the Psychiatry MasterClass. In addition to his clinical work and teaching, he was co-investigator in 2016 a Phase II randomized clinical trial, sponsored by the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS). He continues to support this protocol, now in a Phase III clinical trial under break-through designation by FDA.

Dr. Van Derveer is a diplomate of the American Board of Integrative and Holistic Medicine (ABoIHM) since 2013, and he was board certified in the first wave of diplomates of the new American Board of Integrative Medicine (ABIM) in 2016.