The Dr. Lam Show

Healing Post Covid Syndrome with Guest Dr. Bindiya Gandhi

April 04, 2021 Dr. Lam
The Dr. Lam Show
Healing Post Covid Syndrome with Guest Dr. Bindiya Gandhi
Chapters
The Dr. Lam Show
Healing Post Covid Syndrome with Guest Dr. Bindiya Gandhi
Apr 04, 2021
Dr. Lam

Are you struggling with hair loss, fatigue, difficulty smelling, sleep issues, and gut difficulties post covid even though it's been weeks since you recovered? Along with Dr. Carrie Lam, our esteemed guest Dr. Bindiya, double boarded in Family medicine and Integrative and Holistic Physicians, dive into the reason why and what you can do to help boost your immune system and deal with Post Covid Syndrome. In addition, you will learn the difference between integrative and functional medicine, food sensitivity testing, gut healing, and also proper detoxing!

4:13 - Functional Medicine vs. Integrative Medicine
6:03 - Dealing with chronic stress
8:52 - Meditation
10:40 - How to connect socially
11:52 - Post Covid Syndrome
13:40 - How to treat chronic viral infections
16:20 - How is the Gut related to inflammation
17:45 - Food Sensitivity Testing
22:10 - Genetics Testing and Detoxification

Trying to find an integrative medicine or functional medicine doctor who understands what you're going through? Lam Clinic does Telemedicine all over the world and is only a phone call away.

1. Educate yourself by visiting our website: www.lamclinic.com

2. Call our office at 714-709-8000 to schedule an appointment.

FIND US ONLINE HERE:
» Website: https://www.lamclinic.com/
» Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lamclinic
» Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lam_clinic/
» Tiktok: https://www.tiktok.com/@lamclinic
» YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCWtdb4L5h5EuxKvkNq3M7yw

Show Notes Transcript

Are you struggling with hair loss, fatigue, difficulty smelling, sleep issues, and gut difficulties post covid even though it's been weeks since you recovered? Along with Dr. Carrie Lam, our esteemed guest Dr. Bindiya, double boarded in Family medicine and Integrative and Holistic Physicians, dive into the reason why and what you can do to help boost your immune system and deal with Post Covid Syndrome. In addition, you will learn the difference between integrative and functional medicine, food sensitivity testing, gut healing, and also proper detoxing!

4:13 - Functional Medicine vs. Integrative Medicine
6:03 - Dealing with chronic stress
8:52 - Meditation
10:40 - How to connect socially
11:52 - Post Covid Syndrome
13:40 - How to treat chronic viral infections
16:20 - How is the Gut related to inflammation
17:45 - Food Sensitivity Testing
22:10 - Genetics Testing and Detoxification

Trying to find an integrative medicine or functional medicine doctor who understands what you're going through? Lam Clinic does Telemedicine all over the world and is only a phone call away.

1. Educate yourself by visiting our website: www.lamclinic.com

2. Call our office at 714-709-8000 to schedule an appointment.

FIND US ONLINE HERE:
» Website: https://www.lamclinic.com/
» Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lamclinic
» Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lam_clinic/
» Tiktok: https://www.tiktok.com/@lamclinic
» YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCWtdb4L5h5EuxKvkNq3M7yw

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

Welcome to our episode on the Dr. Lam show where we have our guest, Dr. Bindiya Gandhi. She is going to talk about the post COVID syndrome. This is so pertinent, about what we're going to hear, because a lot of people have gone through COVID. And it's just so amazing to have her here. She is double Boarded in Family Medicine and also Integrative Medicine. She has gone through fellowships in integrated medicine and functional medicine training. So she's definitely one of our integrative pioneers, and doing a lot of Yoga and Reiki, she also does a lot of preventative treatment. So we're so grateful to have you on our podcast today. So, tell us, Dr. Bindiya, how did your integrative journey come along, people would love to hear that.

Dr. Bindiya Gandhi:

Well, thank you so much for having me Dr. Lam. So I'm an integrative and functional medicine doctor. I've been practicing this for almost 10 years. It's really a passion of mine to help educate, inspire and transform lives. My journey into this world started when I was in medical school. I was dealing with a lot of stress myself in medical school, as you know, it's very stressful, very competitive. And that's when I started doing a lot of yoga and meditation and just trying to get through the Boards. This led into a whole new world for me. It started off as stress management, but then I started realizing, that I really enjoy doing yoga, mindfulness, and doing Reiki. Is it possible that I could incorporate this with modern conventional world? At that time, the answer was no.

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

Yes, we don't learn about it.

Dr. Bindiya Gandhi:

We don't learn about it in medical school. I still pursued it. I remember my pharmacology professor, Dr. Marcos was going through the mechanism of actions of hypertension drugs, and we were talking about amlodipine, and I specifically recall, he goes Bindiya, it's not the mechanism of action, these are side effects. These are inevitably going to happen to patients. So here you are, you put someone on high blood pressure medicine, and now they're going to have a side effect, which is the mechanism of action. And so they're going to have the leg swelling and now you have to put them on another medication, so their legs don't swell and it doesn't hurt anymore. And I remember thinking what is this? I don't want to push pills on people. That was my first wake up call where I throught something's not right. And I do have a psychology background, I graduated from the University of Georgia, with a biology and psychology degree. So I always knew mind and body was something I was really interested in. I still didn't know how I was going to incorporate this. When I got to medical school doing pharmacology, I realized that I was going to end up being a pill pusher and felt I can't do this and learning yoga, and Reiki, and then becaming Yoga and Reiki certified, changed my thinking. During my residency, while interviewing for residency programs, I didn't know if there were any integrative medicine, dual family medicine fellowships, at that time, so I went the traditional family medicine route. That's when I learned about Dr. Andrew Weil and the fellowship, I just fell in love and I felt like I found my calling of being a provider to be able to do what I wanted to do and practice the way I want to. So I completed my integrative medicine fellowship and then at the same time I was pursuing functional medicine. To briefly explain for people who don't know the difference, integrative medicine is the modalities of nutrition, mind-body therapy, energy therapy, so alternative therapies. Integrative medicine incorporates traditional conventional medicine, which is scientific based medicine. Functional medicine is a bit different, it is getting to the root cause of the problem. I use integrative medicine to have the tools and techniques to treat the person in a very holistic way and in functional medicine, I'm usually doing functional testing, looking at metabolic processes. They're completely different. I'm looking at different biochemical pathways, doing detoxification, hormonal balance or looking at gut health. It's the combination of both that I use in my practice today to help my patients. I had my own personal journey in residency and that was a validation of why I need to practice this way.

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

Thanks for going through integrative and functional medicine because the lay person would not understand and I feel integrative is a very broad term. And like you said, it comes into play with the energy medicine, acupuncture, the chiropractor, and in functional medicine is where most you see most doctors or practitioners use lab or objective base biochemistry, type of testings. Both are great, to be able to integrate everything together is what we we both love to do. You talked a lot about stress response, a lot of people hearing this know about stress, and it presents in a lot of different ways in different person. Can you go a little more into what you look for in someone with chronic stress?

Dr. Bindiya Gandhi:

My stress probably started off in high school as I was an overachiever. By the time I graduated high school, I already had two years worth of college credit, I was just pushing myself. I had the energy, stamina and I could do it. I kept that mentality through college, graduated in three years with two degrees. So, I was pushing myself. I took a break between medical school and undergrad, which was good, as my body and mind, really needed that. I often felt like a failure, thinking what am I doing with my life?I should have really been in a six year medical school program.

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

Society pressures.

Dr. Bindiya Gandhi:

But, it was good, I needed that break. So chronic stress really started back then, while studying in medical school, trying to find balance, and deal with competitiveness, not with others but myself. I always felt I needed to be better, not because I needed to prove it to my parents or anybody, but myself. So, the stressors were within me. It took a toll on my body. I wasn't aware of it until I started getting sick, like having gut issues, hormonal imbalances, acne, and headaches all the time. During my residency I was told to get over it and and you'll be fine. I thought yes, this is life, and I need to accept it. After all, those who are telling me are my doctors, my attendings at my program. And it's all in my head. But this is why I also knew I had to pursue integrative and functional medicine, and I knew that I had to take care of myself. I had formed a good meditation practice in medical school and I kept that going. I still do when I wake up every morning, I meditate for about 10 minutes. I have two young kids, and still it's something I make a priority to do. Because, for me, it worked when I was in medical school, and still works now, So I've got to make time for myself. Meditation is just one tool that I personally use for chronic stress management. There's other things I do, like yoga which is very important to me. I started focusing on my health and wellness in medical school, and practised yoga since then. I incorporate other other forms of exercise, like running, use the peloton bike, barre, pilates, and so on. It's finding something that works for you to manage your stress. The other thing that is really important for me, is social connection, which is so affected because of the pandemic. So these are the different tools I've learned over the years that helps me to be a good mom and be a good provider, not feel burnt out and still enjoy life. That's what it's ultimately all about, so that I can provide the best care for my patients and for my family.

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

Love that balance is so important and trying to take care of yourself. As you said, a lot of people can resonate with wanting to be successful in life, and we feel guilty when we take breaks. But, your body can only handle a certain amount. So it's important to set aside, time every morning for yourself and find a way to balance and connect socially. During this COVID time, it's definitely been very hard. I'm an extrovert, and it's been extra hard for us to find that connection with people. Once, when I did group classes, with my older, fatigued patients, I realised that I missed human connections so much. I gave a lecture, and spoke to all these ladies and later I was on a high. I was drawing energy in unity. It's all about community at the end of the day, and it was amazing. So definitely, during COVID, it's been hard, but I think people have adapted really well, to, whether connections online or try to find an outlet on how they can socially connect. So talking about COVID, you are going to tell us a little about this post COVID syndrome. Can you expand a little on that?

Dr. Bindiya Gandhi:

Aapproximately, about 55% of people already have been exposed to COVID. In my clinic, I check antibodies as it's kind of important that I do that. But about 80% of people that had COVID, have lingering symptoms. Some of the symptoms most commonly are like fatigue, shortness of breath, headaches, vague neurological disorders, attention deficit disorders, cognitive dysfunctions. Hair loss is a really big one. I see in my practice, people still have loss of smell and taste. So there's so many different symptoms that people are experiencing. Initially, there was no information about post COVID and so the doctors were not talking about it. Nobody knows how to treat it. Everybody was just getting an antidepressant as they don't know what to do. But there's actually a lot you can do about this,

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

Like what? So for the different symptoms or the underlying, you know, root causes? Is there a pathophysiology of why COVID is, so issues.

Dr. Bindiya Gandhi:

So from a functional medicine perspective, I have been treating chronic viral infections for years, So in my toolbox, since COVID is a viral infection, so you're using that same concept to treat patients. It's going back to some of the basics in functional medicine like do they have any nutritional deficiencies? What is going on in their gut? In Chinese and Ayurvedic medicine, part of my integrative roles, all diseases start in the gut. So you have to learn about what's going on in the immune system. A lot of these patients that have post COVID syndrome, their immune system probably was a little overactive. That's why they had the bradykinin storm or the cytokine storm, which gave them a hard time getting over COVID, or the degree of how COVID affected them. So learning about what's going on in their gut because that's where the immune system is active, is one of the first places I start. Is there a bacterial overgrowth, do you have dysbiosis, an imbalance of good and bad bacteria, are there parasites? Once we start addressing these things, it slowly start getting better. Next thing we start looking at is detoxification. Why are some people not getting better, after COVID. I had COVID myself and didnt have any lingering symptoms. I was down for two weeks and then recovered back to normal. It was not the same for everyone, my father in law was unwell for six months, so everybody is recovering differently. It is due to genetics and detoxification, How can your body get rid of the virus or is it staying in your body. With detoxification and just like managing chronic stress, we look at the nutrition, sleep quality, lifestyle measures like exercise, for patients to get better. They can take supplements to boost energy and support their immune system. So it's a very comprehensive approach. Most of my patients get better, and most of my patients appreciate having that dynamic view to their health.

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

So post COVID, we can treat like any other viral infection like the flu virus and help build up your immunity. But when you do come into contact with COVID, and you have it and then you try to recover, it depends on how your body recovers. And those factors, could be diet, exercise lifestyle, nutritional de iciencies, or your gut healt , and what you can do about t e gut and then detoxification Can you go a little more in o the gut and how it is connecte with the inflammation and the mmune system?

Dr. Bindiya Gandhi:

Most people don't realize it, we are exposed to inflammation from various angles, like inflammatory food, that we may eat. Its different for every individual. Our bodies react differently. And, we cap ure data by functional testin that food sensitivities is ver common. Even though its criticised often, I like fruit food sensitivity testing, I've used it on myself. And I can tell you, when I get rid of foods that are inflammatory to my body, then a lot of my symptoms improve. Let me tell you a quick story. I had two babies in quick succession and I ended up having trigger finger on both thumbs after each baby. The first time, I was so desperate, I took a joint injection. The second time COVID happened and I felt uncomfortable going for the injection. Yet, I was desperate. At the same time I had done food sensitivity testing and it turned out that I was sensitive to eggs for the first time. Never happened before. So I cut eggs out of my diet and my trigger finger pain went away. This does make a difference. And I'm testament to when you cut out foods that cause inflammation you improve your You can eliminate the big guys, but if your symptoms are not overall immune system, your gut health in general. So when we're talking about inflammation in the gut is get rid of foods that are inflammatory to you. Most commonly inflammatory foods actually are things like gluten, dairy, eggs, corn, soy, nuts, shellfish , are common allergens, and sugar. There's other foods too like eggs, oatmeal etc. improving, then you definitely want to get more specific and say, could it be tomatoes, is it nightshades, is that beans or coffee? We dont know what does your body react to and forms antibodies causing inflammation. So finding your inflammatory triggers would be the first thing that I would recommend. For inflammation in your gut we have different microbiome and microorganisms in our gut they are the good guys and bad uys, and they all should e living harmoniously but tha doesn't always happen. If we h ve a lot of the bad guys the they've taken over your gut causing inflammation. And thats the link between immune ystem to inflammation in the gu . If you don't now your neurotransmitters, th n that's why you're depressed. A d that's why maybe you're cravin sugars. And that's why you re maybe looking for your dopa ine fix, because your neurotra smitters start in your gut. So e erything really is c

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

That's why they call the gut the second brain. It's telling you that you are missing that sugar cravings. So now when I crave chocolate, I know it's my microbiome. I love the fact that you brought up the food sensitivity, and actually how it can change, just because you did now doesn't mean you're gonna continue to have that food inflammation year or two later. You said oatmeals in the past and now it's tomatoes. So even doing sequential testing, you can eliminate it for nowm but that doesn't mean that it's forever.

Dr. Bindiya Gandhi:

I've done food sensitivity testing for years, because it's something that works on my body, do it regularly to make sure things are in check. Some of the food sensitivities that I had in 2012 are no longer present, but have new ones now. Your microbiome is constantly changing, with pregnancies, hormones, diet, lifestyles and chronic stress. Many things affect what you're sensitive to, now, and what have improved and all the work that you've put into repairing and healing your gut.

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

So we want to reduce inflammation whether it's through food sensitivities, eliminating food and as you mentioned about post COVID, is detoxing. When you talk about detox, are you talking about genetic susceptibilities that can cause you to have issues with detox?

Dr. Bindiya Gandhi:

The first stage of detox happens in the liver and the gut. You want to make sure your gut health is optimized before you do a detox. If you started detox today, and you have poor gut health, then it will not succeed. So, you always fix the gut first. I also look at genetics. That's something I do at my practice to get my patients do genetic tests. If they've got any snips, or mutations that we need to fix and enhance, it will improve their detoxification process. It's not quick fixes when it comes to detox. I know sometimes people will do a 24 hour fast, and they call that a detox or a green juice diet for a week. But that's not what I'm talking about. We do colonic cleanse. I ensure that you're detoxing from your liver, gut, kidneys, and also emotional detox clearing the lungs, heart, and our skin. There's so many things that we need to be detoxing appropriately, at the same time, in a strategic manner. So we're getting rid of toxins. And, ask a doctor before starting detox, especially to learn if its appropriate. If not done appropriately, it can actually cause more harm than good. There are different types of detox, like from viral infections, from metals and toxicities, and hormonal imbalances. Which means there are so many different specific nuances. If you don't detox properly, you can cause yourself more harm. If you're pregnant or nursing, then you may be harming your child. So there's many things that you can't do on your own. You need to work with integrative functional medicine doctor who can show you the right way.

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

Yeah, getting on a comprehensive program and not just doing one at a time, is what you need to do. You're not only doing the gut health, you're doing the detox at the same time, dealing with the stress, and with lifestyle factors. So that's what integrated functional medicine is all about. And I love that. We both do that to be able to help a lot of our patients, step by step, slowly, because it takes time and patience. But that's the long term goal that, you want to get better and have a good quality of life rather than just the quantity. It's just been great talking to you, Dr. Bindiya, and thank you so much for teaching us about post COVID, about gut health, food sensitivities and, dealing with chronic stress. If people wanted to find you, where would be the best place to contact you?

Dr. Bindiya Gandhi:

My website is www.drbindiyamd.com My practice is ReviveAtlantaMD, in Decatur, Georgia. So the practice website is www.reviveatlmd.com You can find me on Instagram, Facebook, I'm not really intoTwitter, but it's @drbindiyamd or @reviveatlmd.

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

So people in Georgia, hopefully are able to find you. We do telemedicine also there. So I'll be sending people over if they need more in-person and a total body approach.

Dr. Bindiya Gandhi:

Thank you so much for having me today.

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

This is the Dr. Lam show and we deal a lot with integrative medicine and functional medicine and we love to talk about this and to be able to change the future of medicine. Subscribe and like our podcast and make sure to share and stay tuned for your next episode.

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