22 Feb The Power of Functional Medicine
If you’ve been looking for another type of healthcare – you’ve found it! Functional medicine is concerned with the root cause of healthcare issues, not just symptom management.
Consider this: If you had a rock in your shoe that hurt your toe every time you took a step, what would you do? Would you just take an aspirin to relieve the pain? Or would you address the underlying problem and shake out the rock?
Functional medicine practitioners are passionate about helping their clients “remove the rock” (address the underlying problem) so they can become empowered and independent.
It’s an ideal approach for people seeking a more natural, holistic approach to their health.
Digging Deeper to Understand the “Why”
The conventional medicine approach is concerned with the “what” of disease. A conventional doctor wants to diagnose you with a condition (hypothyroidism, diabetes, hypertension) so they can then prescribe a medication for that ailment.
In functional medicine, we understand that a proper diagnosis matters, but we are also concerned with why someone has that problem.
The “why” of disease can include:
- Lifestyle factors, especially nutrition
- Chronic inflammation
- Gut health issues
- Hormonal imbalances
- Undiagnosed autoimmunity
- Chronic underlying infections
- Food sensitivities
- Yeast or bacterial infections
- And more
A pill may alleviate symptoms of your “what,” but it often will not address the true, underlying reason that you feel the way they do. In many conditions, if you stop taking the pill, the symptoms resurface – because the underlying cause has not been resolved.
Functional medicine recognizes the importance of addressing the body as a whole and emphasizes how all facets of lifestyle influence health.
Once we understand your unique “why,” we work to resolve it using natural methods: lifestyle modification, supplementation, nutrition, and more.
Customized Testing and Approaches
Thorough lab testing with optimal ranges is foundational to functional medicine, and for good reason. It can show you what is causing your symptoms, if you are headed toward a disease (even if you don’t have symptoms), track the progress of your protocol, and motivate you to stick with your protocol.
Lab testing includes many different tests. Some examples of testing used in functional medicine include:
- Blood chemistry panel. This is an excellent starting point in functional medicine testing and includes the use of functional medicine ranges (versus lab ranges). Blood testing screens for some diseases and can catch a trend toward a disease while there’s still time to reverse it.
- Food sensitivity testing. If a food you eat regularly causes inflammation, this contributes to chronic health disorders.
- Gut Health analysis. Gut problems contribute to chronic health issues. Tests can screen for leaky gut, parasites, yeast or bacterial overgrowth, and autoimmune reactions.
- Chemical and metal sensitivity testing. As with foods, an immune reaction to chemicals or metals can trigger chronic inflammatory health disorders.
- Adrenal testing. This test shows us how well your body responds to stress. Chronically high cortisol levels can impact weight, mood, and other hormones.
- Hormone testing. Hormone imbalances profoundly affect health.
Everyone has so many questions when they first discover our clinic and learn more about functional medicine. Reach out to us to schedule a free call where we can learn more about your needs and determine if you’re a good fit for what we do!