"I vividly remember being hospitalized with kidney stones and wondering where things had gone wrong. For most of my life I was physically active and healthy, and as I laid in the hospital bed, I felt truly helpless and feared for the future. After spending two nights in the hospital and almost a week at home recovering, I decided that it was time to make a change. I made it my personal mission to do everything possible to improve my health so that I could be a better dad and husband.
I knew that I needed to make changes, but progress was slow and there were many obstacles in my way. I had always liked running as a kid and decided that this would be my physical activity going forward. I’ll never forget how at first I could barely make it around the neighborhood without feeling light headed and sick to my stomach. Then one day I decided it was time to leave the neighborhood and push myself up a trail that was near my house. As I began to run my heart started to pound faster and faster. This feeling pulsed throughout my body and made it impossible to focus on anything else. I started to wonder if I was having a heart attack or something even worse. I made up my mind to push through the pain and do whatever it took to live a healthier lifestyle. Nothing serious happened, but it was then than I really accepted that there were no shortcuts to better health, and that this would be a lifelong journey.
I continued to run for a few years and integrated yoga, weights and healthy eating into my routine. While I continued to see health improvements, I knew that I still had a long way to go and couldn’t shake the feeling that another health issue might set me back.
Then last year it happened. It started with an ear infection that caused headaches and morphed into what doctors diagnosed as a vestibular migraine in my inner ear. Specialist after specialist confirmed this diagnosis and told me that I would have to wait it out, as treatment options were limited. This lasted for several months and caused vision problems, vertigo, and insomnia, to name just a few of the symptoms. The doctors had recommended Dramamine and while I took their advice, I didn’t want to acknowledge that this may last for an extended period. In spite of the medication, it was hard to function at a high level professionally, physically, or with my family. There were continued CAT scans, MRIs, specialists, and endless amounts of antibiotics and steroids—not to mention the cost of tests and Dramamine hauls. That helpless feeling returned and once again I feared for the future.
My wife asked if I was willing to try something new. As a registered nurse she had heard about amazing results from holistic and integrative medicine. I was willing to try anything to get my health back. So, she looked up the highest rated integrative doctor in our area and scheduled me an appointment. We met with Dr. Jake Schmutz in January, and within a few minutes of consulting with him, I had a sense of calm and thought: this is going to be my way back to better health. I asked if he had ever seen a patient like me and more importantly, did they heal? His response stuck with me ever since “Men are stubborn, and they usually don’t listen, but you’ll get better if you do exactly what I tell you to do.” I trusted what he said and fully committed to his treatment plan. He ran some tests, asked me a few questions about my lifestyle and started to make recommendations. I walked out of his office with a few supplements and immediately started to see results. My vertigo had calmed, I was sleeping through the night again and life was beginning to return to normalcy, although not yet perfect. I made a follow-up appointment to review test results, and made prescribed new supplements based on those results. Within a month of that follow-up appointment I was 90% improved and back to a normal life. Through this I have concluded that while I had been exercising and eating healthy, I was still ignoring the negatives of traditional medicine and pharmaceuticals. It was painfully obvious that I lacked vitamins and supplements as part of my overall health routine, and this was causing me to be out of balance.
Seven months later and I’ve yet to see a traditional doctor for anything. I’m back to a happy, healthy and very productive lifestyle. More importantly, I feel like I’ve finally found the balance that I was lacking. I’m the most productive I’ve ever been at work, my work-out routine is consistent and my dad and husband skills have improved (not an easy thing to do). I still have challenges like anyone else, but I’ve found a new tool to treat them. I continue to see Dr. Schmutz to fine tune my health and won’t touch a supplement unless he approves. "
— AUSTIN G.
Vice President, Healthcare IT Company