Functional Medicine FAQs
What is Functional Medicine?
Here's the really short explanation:
In essence, it's just good medicine, what medicine should be.
In more detail:
Functional medicine is an evolution in the practice of medicine that better addresses our current health care needs. It shifts the focus from the traditional disease-centered paradigm of medical practice to a more patient-centered approach, addressing the whole person, not just an isolated set of symptoms.
Functional medicine involves understanding the origins, prevention, and treatment of complex, chronic diseases.
Hallmarks of a functional medicine approach include:
•Patient-centered care.The focus of functional medicine is on patient-centered care, promoting health optimization, beyond just the absence of disease.
•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.
•A combination of best medical practices.Functional medicine integrates traditional Western medical practices with what are 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.
As a functional medicine doctor, I spend a lot of time with my patients to learn about their health concerns in the context of their full health story (from birth to now). This helps me gain a thorough understanding of how the interactions amongst their genetic, lifestyle, and environmental factors have influenced their long-term health and complex chronic disease.
What is the difference between functional medicine and naturopathic medicine?
There is a lot of overlap between the two.
The main distinctions are that functional medicine often utilizes cutting edge tests to understand the driving force behind illness.
Additionally, functional medicine does not rely solely on natural medicine/therapies for treatment, and in fact, the majority of certified functional medicine practitioners are medical doctors or internists looking to expand their paradigm.
Naturopathic medicine is similar to functional medicine in many of its core philosophies.
Naturopathy believes in the healing power of nature and the body's innate ability to heal itself, and focuses on using natural therapies ( clinical nutrition, botanical medicine, acupuncture, and diet and lifestyle treatments) to remove the obstacles that are contributing to disease.
What Does this Mean to YOU... My Valued patient
It means that you will receive a level of care beyond what a regular naturopathic or functional medicine doctor can provide. With dual certification I am able to use functional medicine to thoroughly assess your concerns and then explain to you the real reasons why you are feeling unwell: the core drivers of your illness, and the steps we need to take for improvement. I then use my wealth of knowledge on natural therapies to create an individually-tailored treatment plan for you. And because I have been prescribing natural medicine in clinical practice for over 13 years, I know what works, and for whom, and what doesn’t; which of course translates into more successful outcomes.