Functional Medicine is hardly considered new treatment, as it was first mentioned in “The Lancet” in the year 1870. “Here, then, I say, is the highest justification for all treatment being based upon the principle of restoring disordered functions to order, and this is what I have ventured to term Functional Medicine.” However, in the last decade, a redefining of chronic disease treatment has exploded in the form of Functional Medicine.
Functional medicine aims to correct underlying issues through nutrition, lifestyle, and behavior modifications all determined by cutting edge diagnostic testing available to all physicians around the globe. The key to functional medicine lies within the targeting of root cause breakdowns in function. For example, nutrient malabsorption due to intestinal issues.
What clinical researchers and functional medicine physicians have found is the holy grail of the future of medicine. Functional medicine has been so successful, the highly recognized Cleveland Clinic has invested in opening of the Cleveland Clinic for Functional Medicine, where research, clinical trials, and treatment has begun on thousands of patients with debilitating chronic diseases such as Type II Diabetes, Hypothyroidism, Autoimmune disorders, Cognitive Decline and Alzheimer’s, and more.
Due to the success of Functional Medicine, many educational authorities have invested in making this “high tech and high touch” form of health care available to cities and towns around the United States. Practitioners that hold the title of Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner from post-Doctoral programs such as Functional Medicine University or the Institute for Functional Medicine allow patients to have access to health care they need and deserve.
To best summarize how you can have your life transformed by functional medicine, here is an excerpt from Mark Hyman, MD, the Director of the Center for Functional Medicine at The Cleveland clinic:
“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, 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.”