Functional medicine is a new approach in healthcare that focuses on individualized treatment for all aspects of health. The focus is to find the underlying causes of disease by looking for imbalances in the body. These imbalances lead to a variety of problems in the body and all organs. The goal of functional medicine is to help support the body in restoring its ability to heal itself.
How Does Functional Medicine Work?
Functional Medicine works by addressing the root cause of disease. This means that while some treatments may be similar to conventional medicine, they will not focus on just treating the symptoms. Functional Medicine looks at how diet, exercise, stress levels, and other factors can impact your health.
Functional Medicine different than Conventional Medicine:
The two types of medicine are very different. Conventional medicine focuses on treating symptoms as they appear. Functional Medicine looks at why the symptoms have occurred. It tries to find out what the root cause of the illness is and treats that, rather than just dealing with the symptoms. Conventional medicine also focuses on treating individual illnesses separately from each other. Functional Medicine looks at how different illnesses can affect each other and how a patient’s overall health can be improved by addressing all of their health problems.
Causes of Disease:
In functional medicine, various factors can contribute to disease. These include:
Genetic predisposition (diseases such as cancer that run in families).
Hormonal balance and how it affects the body.
Poor diet and nutrition.
Toxicity from physical, chemical, and biological factors.
Infections and inflammation.
Lack of exercise.
Each of these factors can play a role in causing disease. Functional medicine practitioners work to identify the root cause of the disease and then create a treatment plan that addresses it. This may include dietary changes, supplements, herbs, medications, and other therapies.
Benefits of Functional Medicine:
Functional medicine can provide many benefits for patients. These include:
An individualized approach that takes into account all aspects of health.
A focus on restoring balance in the body.
Addressing the root cause of disease.
Treating the whole person, not just the disease.
Working with patients to create a treatment plan that they understand and can follow.
Providing education for patients about their disease process and how it may be affecting other areas of the body.
Using conventional treatments in addition to dietary changes, supplements, and lifestyle changes.
In functional medicine, each patient is different and unique. A plan for one person might not work for the next. Functional medicine practitioners take a holistic approach and consider all aspects of health when they create a treatment plan for their patients.
In functional medicine, there is no “one size fits all” solution to every problem. The goal is to treat each person as an individual and get to the root causes of their health issues.
Doctors of Functional Medicine:
Many conventional doctors are beginning to adopt the techniques of Functional Medicine, but there are still very few who are specifically trained in it. One way to find a doctor that practices Functional Medicine is by looking for one on the Institute for Functional Medicine website.
If you do not have access to a doctor of Functional Medicine, there are many books about this type of medicine that you can read to learn more about it. The book “The Functional Medicine Revolution” is a good place to start.
Functional Medicine is a branch of medicine that is slowly gaining in popularity. It is very different from conventional medicine, as it focuses on addressing the root cause of disease rather than just treating symptoms. If you are interested in learning more about Functional Medicine, there are many books and websites available to you.