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From Pain To Passion

For over 25 years I have lived with the chronic inflammatory disease Ankylosing Spondylitis. Almost 15 of those years I lived with severe chronic pain in my entire spine, ribs, hips, and sternum. During this time there were days I could barely walk because the pain was so severe. I also struggled with severe digestive problems, chronic fatigue, and anxiety.


For 7 years I was on many pharmaceutical drugs and became dependent on painkillers.  The danger of doing this, as was the case for me, is that symptoms are somewhat reduced, but the damage in the body is continuing. This is part of the reason it took me so long to make progress. I kept covering up the real problem and suppressing symptoms with drugs. I realized I was never going to get better or make progress unless I addressed the real issue in my body.  


When I started to address the underlying causes of my conditions my body started to strengthen internally and my symptoms of chronic fatigue, anxiety, digestive problems, and pain were drastically reduced.  Today I have been free of prescription drugs for over 10 years and I have the least amount of pain and best overall health than at any other point in my life.


Because of this transformation in my life I have become extremely passionate about helping other individuals improve their quality of life without the use of drugs and the risk of harsh side effects. I do this by running 2 – 4 functional lab tests looking to identify underlying causes and dysfunction in the body.    




Dr. Andrew Cummins experience living with Ankylosing Spondylitis

When the underlying causes and dysfunction are identified nutritional and botanical supplementation protocols can be implemented to help restore normal function to the body and this can dramatically reduce inflammation and pain, increase energy, reduce anxiety, and improve digestive health. This reduces the time it takes to make progress because the supplementation support is precise based on the testing.


It took me so long to make progress because when I started experiencing symptoms from my condition, I didn’t have the guidance from a physician who had the knowledge to look for and address the underlying causes and dysfunction that was happening in my body. 


After 7 years of pharmaceutical drugs and severe side effects I was told no more could be done for me.  When I started the journey to recovery I was guessing and I was on my own. I want to give individuals what I didn’t have. I want to help them shorten the time period to where they can experience results and a reduction in pain and the other life altering symptoms of anxiety, chronic fatigue, and poor digestive health.  


The functional lab tests assess the following areas:


1. Stress Hormones:

Stress Hormone imbalances (salivary cortisol) can disrupt metabolism (energy production) and lead to a breakdown in the gut lining causing a leaky gut and this can cause symptoms such as joint pain, fatigue, digestive problems, anxiety, and chronic inflammation throughout the body.   


2. Gut health:

Assessing levels of potentially harmful bacteria, viruses, parasites, and fungi/yeast. An overgrowth of these organisms can lead to a breakdown of the gut lining also contributing to a leaky gut and systemic inflammation, pain, fatigue, anxiety, depression, and poor digestive health.  It also assesses levels of opportunistic bacteria such as Klebsiella and Prevotella which have been associated with Ankylosing Spondylitis, and Proteus, which has been associated with Rheumatoid Arthritis. Many other markers are assessed including levels of digestive enzymes, good bacteria, gluten sensitivity, and levels of secretory IgA which is our first line of defense in the gut. Zonulin levels are measured and if levels are elevated this is a marker indicating intestinal permeability or leaky gut.


3. Energy production/Detoxification:

(Urinary organic acids) This simple urine test measures several different areas such as: Stress hormones, neurotransmitter metabolites, mitochondrial function, energy production, yeast overgrowth, and detoxification. Correcting imbalances in any of these areas can dramatically reduce inflammation and pain in the body, increase energy, reduce anxiety, and improve digestive health.    


4. Levels of Inflammation/Oxidative Stress:

A lot of the pain we experience in our body is because of excessive inflammation. The goal is not only to use natural treatments to reduce the inflammation and pain, but more importantly to identify what is causing the excessive inflammation and imbalance in the immune system.  


These lab tests guide supplement and nutritional protocols.


In addition, I teach the exercise program Foundation Training.  Foundation Training strengthens the muscles, tendons, and ligaments supporting the spine and hips, which reduces inflammation and pain, increases mobility, and improves posture.  



Foundation Training:


  • Is a series of poses and movements

  • Can be performed anywhere

  • No equipment needed

  • Strengthens the muscles, tendons, and ligaments around the spine, sacroiliac joints, and hips

  • Supports and stabilizes the spine, sacroiliac joints, and hips

  • Reduces back pain, sacroiliac, buttock, and hip pain

  • Improves Posture


The exercise program Foundation Training took me to another level in reducing my pain and increasing my mobility. I have made the progress I have and have success with my clients because of correcting imbalances within the body in relation to stress hormones, gut health, detoxification/energy production, inflammation, and the structural integrity of the spine and hips.


My passion is to help others improve their quality of life by reducing pain, improving digestive health, and overcoming anxiety and chronic fatigue through the implementation of personalized protocols and avoiding the harsh side effects of drugs.

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