Why do you have this problem...
Nowhere could this apply more than in the creation of health in our children. Understanding that everything we do from teenage-hood to conception as a female, will have an effect on our already formed eggs. Our choices with regard to the food we choose to consume or the thoughts we choose to think, the environment we expose ourselves to, all have an impact on our developing baby. Functional medicine scientifically connects all these elements in the current fast paced, chemically and emotionally toxic world we live in, to the wise informed choices we will make, that will impact our child’s physical, mental and emotional development.
Functional medicine addresses the underlying causes of disease, using a systems-oriented approach and engaging both patient and practitioner in a therapeutic partnership. It is an evolution in the practice of medicine that better addresses the healthcare needs of the 21st century. By shifting the traditional disease-centered focus of medical practice to a more patient-centered approach, functional medicine addresses the whole person, not just an isolated set of symptoms.
Functional medicine practitioners spend time with their patients, listening to their histories and looking at the interactions among genetic, environmental, emotional and lifestyle factors that can influence long-term health and complex, chronic disease. In this way, functional medicine supports the unique expression of health and vitality for each individual.
Functional / Integrative medicine is a science-based, comprehensive, holistic approach to health. It focuses less on dis-ease states and symptom control, but aims to understand why the dysfunction has established itself in the body in the first place. The unique genetic makeup of each patient is considered, along with both internal (mind, body, and spirit) and external (physical and social environment) factors that affect total functioning. Functional medicine integrates traditional Western medical practices with what is sometimes considered “alternative” or “integrative” medicine. It creates a focus on prevention and healing through therapeutic nutrition, exercise, targeted supplements, detoxifcation programs and stress-management techniques. Functional Medicine asks the vital questions that very few conventional doctors ask: “Why do you have this problem in the first place?”
How is Functional Medicine Different?
Functional medicine involves understanding the origins, prevention, and treatment of complex, chronic disease. Hallmarks of a functional medicine approach include: Patient-centered care. The focus of functional medicine is on patient-centered care, promoting health as a positive vitality, beyond just the absence of disease. By listening to the patient and learning his or her story, the practitioner brings the patient into the discovery process and tailors treatments that address the individual’s unique needs. An integrative, science-based healthcare approach.
Functional medicine practitioners look “upstream” to consider the complex web of interactions in the patient’s history, physiology, and lifestyle that can lead to illness. The unique genetic makeup of each patient is considered, along with both internal (mind, body, and spirit) and external (physical and social environment) factors that affect total functioning. Integrating best medical practices.
Functional medicine integrates traditional Western medical practices with what is sometimes considered “alternative” or “integrative” medicine, creating a focus on prevention through nutrition, diet, and exercise; use of the latest laboratory testing and other diagnostic techniques; and prescribed combinations of drugs and/or botanical medicines, supplements, therapeutic diets, detoxification programs, or stress-management techniques.
Here are 5 basic principles that define Functional Medicine:
- Functional Medicine views us all as being different; genetically and biochemically unique. This personalized health care treats the individual, not the disease. It supports the normal healing mechanisms of the body, naturally, rather than attacking disease directly.
- Functional Medicine is deeply science based. The latest research shows us that what happens within us is connected in a complicated network or web of relationships. Understanding those relationships allows us to see deep into the functioning of the body.
- Your body is intelligent and has the capacity for self-regulation, which expresses itself through a dynamic balance of all your body systems.
- Your body has the ability to heal and prevent nearly all the diseases of aging.
- Health is not just the absence of disease, but a state of immense vitality.
Here lies the clear distinction and definition of Functional Medicine. Instead of asking, “What drug matches up with this disease?” Functional Medicine asks the vital questions that very few conventional doctors ask: “Why do you have this problem in the first place?” and “Why has function been lost?” and “What can we do to restore function?” In other words, Functional Medicine looks to find the root cause or mechanism involved with any loss of function, which ultimately reveals why a set of symptoms is there in the first place, or why the patient has a particular disease label.
Functional Medicine is a true combination of Chinese Medicine, Western Medicine and scientific research. It combines the philosophy of balance and how to restore function from Chinese Medicine and the knowledge of biochemistry and physiology of Western Medicine with the latest scientific research about how our genetics, environment and lifestyle all interact with each other. Functional medicine focuses assessment and intervention at the root levels of metabolic imbalance and is an evolution in the practice of medicine that addresses the healthcare needs of the 21st century by focusing on prevention and uncovering the underlying causes of serious chronic disease.
Instead of just suppressing symptoms, it deals with the root causes of disease and is less concerned with making a diagnosis and more concerned with the underlying imbalances, which are the mechanisms of the disease process.
As opposed to Western Medicine, Functional medicine treats the patient and not the disease. In addition, it provides a framework for the practice of medicine that uses all the tools of healing and prevention, both conventional and “alternative”, to address the whole person rather than an isolated set of symptoms