New wellness center comes to La Jolla: PDG Health focuses on ‘functional medicine’

In a new “con-zen-porary” space above Prospect Street, acupuncturist Paul Gamache opened the doors to PDG Health wellness center the first week of July to provide a space for functional medicine in La Jolla, including chiropractic services, acupuncture, nutrition consultations, meditation, cooking classes, specialty lab tests and more.

For those unfamiliar with the term, Gamache explained, “ ‘Functional medicine’ is a practice that sees a person as a system of systems, so we look at how things like your environment, sleep patterns, what might being going on in your stomach (which nutrients you are absorbing and which you need) and so on, affect the overall health of the person. Functional medicine also sees meditation, acupuncture and better nutrition as the center to health and wellness, not just adjunct consideration.”

Joking that “things like acupuncture are often the last resort,” he said, “People try other things, but as far as how we work, we treat and assess through a very different lens than conventional medicine that gives a deeper insight of the cause of the illness.”

Gamache’s practice combines modern technologies with time-tested remedies to address the root of an ailment. “We run advanced lab tests beyond a standard blood test to see what might be going on internally, as well as other modern technologies to screen and diagnose,” he said. “But the treatment is more focused on natural alternatives.” However, “certainly there are limits to what we do, so we always refer to specialists when needed.”

After working at another practice on Fay Avenue, Gamache said he wanted to branch out to a space where he could offer more services. The new facility has two treatment rooms and an open main space with moveable furniture so it can be a reception area during normal business hours, and cleared out for meditation classes. PDG Health as a collective practice includes chiropractors, nutritionists, internal medicine practitioners, acupuncturists and Gamache said he would like to add a masseuse.

PDG Health will also offer classes in mindfulness-based stress reduction, cooking and meditation. In a few weeks, a lunchtime drop-in meditation class will start, with details to be announced. “We’re trying to complete the circle of what people need to be well,” Gamache said.

To launch the center, there will be several free introductory events this week. First, a presentation on yoga and Ayurveda (incorporating breathing, yoga and meditation into daily routines) 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 22. RSVP: (858) 459-5900.

On Tuesday, Sept. 27, the center will host an introduction to Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and Mindful and Compassionate Parenting (MCP), 6:30 p.m. RSVP: (858) 459-5900.

PDG Health is open Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., with each specialist operating his or her own hours, at 909 Prospect St. Suite 290B.