HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - Elizabeth Patterson said for years she felt like her health was out of her hands.
"I used to be this person who was full of energy, and I could go all day long," Patterson said.
She said her symptoms came crashing down on her after she and her family moved from Boston to Mississippi in 2012.
"I was just exhausted, and I was having all these uncomfortable symptoms," Patterson recalled.
Pattersons symptoms were vast. She suffered from fatigue, anxiety, recurring throat issues and some symptoms were crippling.
"I had migraine headaches, debilitating migraine headaches for years," Patterson said.
She said her issues with concentration and memory made her fear she could have Alzheimer's Disease.
"I could think of what I wanted to say, but I couldn't get it to come out of my mouth," Patterson said.
Patterson received diagnoses and treatments, but she said she didn't feel like her old self until she found Hattiesburg Clinic's Functional and Integrative Medicine Physician Dr. Claudia Karam.
"So, I'm basically looking at those same issues with a different lens, a different viewpoint," Karam said.
Through the direction of functional medicine, Karam used a personalized approach looking at Patterson's health history and its link to Patterson's ongoing symptoms. Through this approach, Karam found Patterson's chronic health issues were gut related.
"We know that 70 percent of your immune system is actually housed in your gut," Karem said. "When that is not optimal it can affect our immune response, but also affect inflammation and our health overall."
Karam prescribed a refined plan of lifestyle changes for Patterson to correct her gut health. Patterson first visited Karam in February.
"After two months, I'm feeling great," Patterson said. "I haven't felt this good since I was in my 20s and that's the truth."
Karam said she wants her patients to look at gastrointestinal symptoms like a light on your dashboard.
"That it may be a sign that either digestion is not optimal or that gut health or gut bacteria balance is not optimal and that affects, downstream effects on other parts, aspects of their health," Patterson said.
At 64 years old, Patterson said her memory is back and her digestive issues and migraines are gone.
"By getting a healthier gut, you can improve your overall health in every way," Patterson said.
For more information on Functional and Integrative Medicine, visit HattiesburgClinic.com.