I have been practicing functional medicine for almost six years, and for the past year have operated a completely virtual practice. Want to know the most common question I still get after all these years?
“What exactly is Functional Medicine?”
While a patient-centered approach isn’t anything new, focusing on the root cause of the patient’s health challenge as opposed to treating individual symptoms is new… ENTER: functional medicine.
The Institute for Functional Medicine (IFM) defines functional medicine as this:
“Functional medicine determines how and why illness occurs and restores health by addressing the root causes of disease for each individual.”
How Is Functional Medicine Different?
In a nutshell, the functional medicine approach is:
- Individualized – No two treatment protocols are exactly the same because patient genetic, biochemical, and lifestyle factors play a huge role.
- Patient-centered – Throughout their entire care plan, doctors work to educate and empower patients to play an active role in their health and wellness, rather than just prescribing medications to cover the symptoms.
- Evidence-based – My protocols are backed by peer-reviewed research and published case studies.
- Integrative – My protocols utilize modern medical functional lab testing, often times combining western and eastern medical approaches as well as tailoring diet and lifestyle modifications specifically to the lab outcome.
- Safe – My approach has little to no side effects and often times patients see other seemingly “unrelated” complaints self-resolve.
Who Is Functional Medicine For?
There are a lot of patients who have tried several different traditional physicians’ protocols and are still not getting the results they are looking for. Some of my patients have tried every new medication formulated for their symptoms and haven’t experienced relief. Others have gone to numerous appointments, never to meet with the actual doctor so they feel as though they have not been “heard.”
Functional medicine is also for someone who is experiencing a recent health setback and is looking to uncover the cause rather than chase the symptoms. All-in-all, functional medicine is really for anyone wanting to take complete control of their health, to reset their physiology and explore their biochemistry in a way that creates sustainable change for the better.
How Functional Medicine Targets Specific Health Challenges
Everyone wants to know “Can functional medicine work for me because I have ____” (fill in the blank). The beauty of functional medicine is that because it isn’t one size fits all, it enables the practitioner to work with patients presenting with a wide variety of health conditions. Some of the health challenges I have helped patients with are:
- Adrenal disorders
- Autoimmune disease
- Cardiovascular disease
- Chronic fatigue
- Chronic sinusitis
- Chronic infections
- Digestive disorders (IBD, IBS, GERD/Reflux)
- Estrogen Dominance
- Elevated cholesterol
- Environmental and food allergies
- Female disorders (PMS, Menopause, Infertility, PCOS)
- Hair loss
- Hormonal imbalances
- Interstitial cystitis
- Mast cell activation syndrome
- Mercury and heavy metal toxicity
- Metabolic syndrome, pre-diabetes, insulin resistance
- Migraines and headaches
- MS (Multiple Sclerosis)
- Overweight and obesity
- Sleep disorders and insomnia
- Thyroid disorders
- Weight gain
If you or someone you know are suffering from any of these conditions I encourage you to explore what functional medicine can do for you! Let’s get started by clicking here. (And if you know of someone who is struggling with any of these health conditions please share this email with them!)
P.S. I’m Not Only a Doctor, I’m a Patient
I have always struggled with hormonal imbalances which have left me dealing with horrible allergies, depression, anxiety, inability to lose weight, insomnia, mood swings and joint pain. It wasn’t until my career in holistic healthcare that I started to apply my newfound knowledge to myself and slowly see change occur.
Fast forward to working directly with a doctor of functional medicine and I was able to finally experience a full night’s sleep, get back into exercise because I no longer had joint pain and finally be able to travel again (something I LOVE to do) because my anxiety seemed to melt away.
So if you are currently not functioning at 100% – I get it. I’ve been there. And while I’m a work in progress, I saw enough change occur in me and my state of health to believe in the functional medicine approach and I don’t doubt that you can’t get results too.