Functional Medicine

Maria Larkin, M.ED, RDN/LD and Courtney Guarino, M.S. RDN/LD

What to expect from nutrition counseling:


I created my business model to be focused on one area of health, i.e. the gastrointestinal tract and gut health.  I was hoping that it would simplify for me the need to know everything about every kind of disease. But I quickly realized that the gut plays a role in so many different health conditions that I ended up helping my clients with more than their intestinal issues.  When I help clients have better digestion, I help them with their skin, their anxiety, their hormones, their weight and blood sugar. I help clients get off of medications when I repair their gut, including medication for autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis.

With this in mind, depending on your needs and wants, I conduct a comprehensive functional medicine assessment with a nutrition-oriented physical exam for a variety of conditions including: skin, autoimmune disease, hormone imbalance, pain and fatigue, migraines, anxiety/depression and weight gain or high cholesterol.  

An imbalance in gut bacteria, the presence of parasites, yeast, or heavy metals in the intestine as well as pancreatic or bile insufficiency and plain old low stomach acid can impair our gut ecology. 

Food and environmental sensitivities develop when our gut lining is damaged. Recognizing and removing sensitive foods can be one of the first steps to healing the gut. 

Food allergies, intolerances or sensitivities may also be suspect if

  • Your symptoms are chronic and frequent
  • You have many other clinical or co-morbid conditions
  • There is evidence of an active inflammatory process
  • You have chronic excess mucus production or a history of food allergy 

If you suffer from IBS, migraines, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, brain fog, and other chronic inflammatory diseases such as ulcerative colitis, crohn’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis and eczema then adverse food reactions may be playing a role. If you have been diagnosed with Celiac Disease but still have symptoms despite vigilant adherence to a gluten free diet, then other adverse food reactions may be affecting your condition.

My staff and I at Better Gut Better Health will help you uncover any adverse food reactions and plan healthful diets to improve symptoms. We carefully educate our clients how to read labels for targeted foods, how to eat in restaurants and other places out of the home, and how to use alternative foods and supplements to ensure adequate nutrient intake. 

Better Gut Better Health offers PCR and comprehensive stool testing; adrenal, thyroid, female/male and metabolic (insulin) hormone testing; food allergy and food sensitivity testing; progressive testing for heart health. Our test options include state of the art science from the following companies:

Genova Diagnostics
ZRT Labs
Boston Heart Diagnostics
Vibrant Wellness
Diagnostic Solutions
Microbiome Labs

I will work with you and your doctor(s) as necessary to order the right tests and interpret results accurately so you can be on your way to feeling better and getting your life back! 

There is no doubt that the food we eat can either heal or damage our gut.  At Better Gut Better Health we will personalize foods and a gut healing food plan so that you can comfortably start eating right away. 

What is functional medicine? 

You may be asking, “What exactly is Functional Medicine?”  Functional Medicine understands the role an individual’s genetics, lifestyle, personal history, and physiology all play in identifying health issues.  I conduct a Functional Medicine “Timeline” to identify core imbalances in the body.  This includes connecting the dots between body, mind and spirit. Given the right tools the body can go a long way to healing itself once the root cause is identified.  Having actively completed all of the Institute for Functional Medicine modules and become certified in the Next Level Functional Nutrition training over the course of several years  allows me to confidently help you feel better all over!

Our specialities:

  • Celiac Disease and Non-celiac Gluten Sensitivity
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
  • Constipation and Gastrointestinal Dysmotility
  • Diarrhea
  • Short Bowel Syndrome and Bowel Obstructions
  • Loss of Intestinal Permeability (Leaky Gut)
  • Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO)
  • Inflammatory bowel disease (Crohn’s disease and Ulcerative colitis)
  • Acid Reflux/Heartburn
  • Esophageal Disorders: Barrett’s Esophagus, Eosinophilic Esophagitis
  • Gall Bladder Diseases: Gall Stones, Bile Insufficiency or Reflux
  • Diverticulitis/-osis
  • Fatty Liver Disease
  • Pancreatic Disorders
  • PCOS, Women’s Health

Which conditions are affected by poor gut health: 

  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Sjogren’s syndrome
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Joint pain/arthritis
  • Weight gain and weight loss resistance
  • Migraines and chronic headaches
  • Interstitial Cystitis and Pelvic Floor Dysfunction
  • Brain fog and impaired memory
  • Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome and hormone imbalances
  • Fatigue and low energy
  • Thyroid dysfunction
  • ADHD

Options for meeting with us:

Both the initial consult and follow-up appointments are one-hour long except in our programs that are tailored to your needs. Our first session will include a complete medical nutrition therapy assessment, including a discussion to identify your needs.

Individual Sessions – In Office

You may choose to meet with us for one or more select nutrition counseling sessions in our offices at the Beane Farm in Newington, NH 

Individual Sessions – Virtual Video Visits

We use a HIPAA compliant platform for our virtual video sessions, which are eligible for telehealth insurance coverage. Check with your insurance company for confirmation of coverage of telehealth virtual video sessions. 


We accept the following insurances:

  •      Aetna
  •      Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield
  •      Cigna
  •      Harvard Pilgrim Health Care
  •      Health Plans, Inc.
  •      Maine Community Health Partners
  •      Tufts Health Plan 
  •      United Healthcare

As the client, you are responsible for payments for which your insurance company denies payment. We encourage you to call insurance company to verify coverage prior to your appointment time.  

Self Pay or Health Savings Accounts

We offer a 10-percent discount on the pre-purchase of 3 or more visits for our clients who choose to self-pay.  Cash, checks and flexible spending accounts and most credit cards are accepted for copayments or for self-pay options.

Please contact the office for pricing information if you are interested in self-pay. Payment is due at the time of service.

Click here for our Financial Payment Policy

Cancellation policy:

Better Gut Better Health has a 48-hour cancellation policy. This allows us time to schedule those individuals on our waiting list. Clients who cancel their nutrition counseling appointment in less than 48 hours are required to pay a $100 fee. Insurance does not cover this fee. Thank you for your understanding as we strive to meet the needs of our clients.