Our daughter had Ulcerative Colitis symptoms starting age 5, and we started seeing Stephanie Belseth CPNP shortly before our daughter’s 7th birthday. We see both a regular gastroenterologist, as well as Stephanie for more naturalistic approaches (her focus is on pediatrics, but others at Newbridge Clinic handle adults). We found Stephanie through the GAPS website, since she specializes in conditions helped by the GAPS diet and nutrition (Autism, ADHD, Allergies, Dyslexia, Seizures, Autoimmune, etc) through gut-healing. She is very familiar with gut-healing approaches.  Our regular gastro had tested for c-diff, but no comprehensive stool testing to look at her good and bad bacteria, etc. Through Stephanie we had comprehensive stool/blood/urine testing done which were VERY helpful IMHO. The stool testing revealed severe overgrowth of multiple “potential pathogenic” gut bacteria. Using herbs listed identified in the stool test as effective (berberine, uva ursi, etc) against these specific bacteria, we started our daughter on a one-by-one herb protocol to eradicate them, which took months (each one took a few weeks). We also incorporated a number of other supplements to address deficiencies identified in the blood/urine tests. Our diet for the last two years has been a combination of GAPS, SCD, & Paleo (which have a lot of overlap.) Over this time our daughter’s health has continued to improve – it’s currently been about 4 months since the last visible trace of blood in stools occurred!  Natren probiotics specifically have been very helpful for her.  Stephanie will also prescribe LDN if you want – we tried it for over 6 months, but dropped it when the topical LDN application started causing rashes.  Luckily our daughter’s current UC stability wasn’t negative impacted stopping the LDN.  I would highly recommend anyone with intestinal issues to consider doing complete stool/blood/urine testing to help identify underlying issues and help with gut healing.  NOTE – this testing was NOT done through a gastroenterologist, rather through an experienced functional medicine practitioner (Stephanie Belseth).  The Gastroenterolist wasn’t trained in this approach, but our daughter would be on 6MP and/or worse medications had we only followed the gastro docs recommendations.  Instead, we currently only have a sulfasalazine prescription through the gastroenterologist, which is one of the most benign UC meds.  Lord-willing, if we can continue the gut-healing approaches through Stephanie (diet/supplements), our daughter will eventually not need the sulfasalazine prescription.  Thank you, Stephanie and Newbridge Clinic.  ~ Robert, Maple Grove

Gut healing with Ulcerative Colitis

I just had to write to tell Stephanie how well Alex is doing with his diet, exercise and supplements.  He is such a trooper!  After we reviewed our test results and had our appointment, I convinced my husband that we should go cold turkey and take him off of the foods she recommended, do our best to get him outside everyday for exercise, and start the supplements she recommended.  We cut gluten, dairy, corn, eggs, soy and sugar, all artificial foods dyes, artificial additives and preservatives out of his diet (and ours) about 6 weeks ago.  It was really tough at first because he was so picky, that he refused almost everything at first.  The meltdowns were horrible.  All he wanted was chocolate milk, cheese pizza, juice and macaroni and cheese.  He didn’t eat anything new the first few days.  But we were strict and got through the first 2 weeks, which was the worst.  I can’t believe we got through it, but it was worth it because the difference since then has been amazing.  We worked him up on the supplements one at a time and he doesn’t seem to mind them if I mix them in pear sauce.  He is doing so well!  His stomachaches are gone and his poop is no longer clogging the toilet (who knew?).  AND, he no longer is wetting the bed (that was a surprise!).  The dark circles under his eyes are lighter, his eczema is clearing up, and he wasn’t in the red zone a single day in the past week at school for behavior!  He is much less clingy with me, and drop off at school has been a breeze the last couple of weeks.  His teacher asked if we put him on medication, because he now can stay in his seat more than ever before, and has been much less intrusive and touchy with other kids.  Even his handwriting has improved.  My husband was initially skeptical, but he now is a believer.  We still can’t believe how much better he is.  And he is eating so many more foods now that he used to.  He asks for broccoli and cucumbers now, when before he wouldn’t touch anything green.  I can’t believe the foods that he is eating now that he would have never touched before.  He actually is up a pound, without even trying!  He still is addicted to his ipad, but the more we restrict his screen time, the better he seems to do, so we have to continue to reduce that.  He still has things to work on, but we are now 100% committed, after seeing how much better he is already doing.  Thank you!  We will see you next month.  ~ Aimee B., mother of 7 year old Alex, Minneapolis

ADHD Mom

Dear Newbridge, Here is a brief update on Sadie.  She’s doing great!  Her stools are healthy and she is going every day!  She has had NO stomach aches since we were last in.  She is thriving.  She has had no staining in her underpants, no urinary tract infections, and no smelly urine at all since September (after 2 years of dealing with this!).  Her night time accidents have been happening only 1 x a week now, versus nightly previously.  Her sleep is more solid and she is better rested during the day.  She is happier and her mood is more balanced and consistent, which is phenomenal.  I don’t think I’ve expressed enough the amount of gratitude we have for you helping us when no one else could.  You’ve made a priceless impact of the life of Sadie and our entire family.  I’ll be forever indebted to you for this.  THANK YOU for doing what you do!   ~ Marie, Mother of 6 year old Sadie who recovered from chronic urinary tract infections, constipation, and encopresis

Healing from chronic UTIs

Dear Newbridge Staff, I wanted to share our news that Caitlyn arrived this past Friday night.  Everything went better than I ever expected and I was able to deliver as I hoped at the birth center.  After tearing horribly with Carson last time, I didn’t need a single stitch this time, and all of my bodily functions are intact!  I am so very glad I was able to avoid the c-section route that was recommended by the doctor who delivered Carson.  We went home from the birth center 4 hours after delivering.  I feel better now than I did even 6 weeks after having Carson.  Breastfeeding is going well and I am so grateful for you all.  Thanks for all of your guidance and support always!  ~ Kirsten, 28 year old mom, Woodbury

Perfect delivery!

I just want to thank you for all you do.  Jack’s been asking for forever to come see Stephanie.  He loves coming to Newbridge.  It is the highlight of his day whenever we come!  The staff are all so warm and welcoming, and always go the extra mile.  He absolutely loves Shelley (and so do I)!  Stephanie is so great with kids and she is so incredibly knowledgeable!  He has improved so much under her care, and his sensory issues are so much better.  Thanks for all you’ve done to help him!  ~ Trisha (32 mother of 5 year old Jack, with sensory integration issues and autism)

Sensory issues improved!

“After years of going to doctor after doctor and not getting better, I can’t thank Dr. Dolan and Dr. Vilensky enough for helping me figure out what was wrong with me, treating my gut, methylation and detox issues and underlying infections, and for helping me feel better than I have in years. I now have energy to go to work and play with my kids, my joint and muscle pain is gone, and I am now sleeping through the night.  I have my life back.  You are incredible!”  ~ Michael V. (42 year old male, Minnetonka, MN)