Addressing the underlying causes of disease
Functional Medicine addresses the underlying causes of disease, using a systems-oriented approach and engaging both the patient and the practitioner in to a therapeutic partnership.
The approach is patient, rather than disease and symptom-centred:
Their direct participation empowers and engages the patient. The assessment and treatment is highly individualised, as we are treating the patient and not just the disease (we take into consideration the genetic back ground, the life style, the eating habits, the sleep pattern, how much the patient exercises per week, are they taking the correct supplements, are the stress levels high, what is the hormonal climate like at present: are we in a pre menopausal situation, or going through menopause in women or andropause in men, is the Thyroid underactive , how much adrenal fatigue are we dealing with etc…
The approach is based on conventional laboratory results and new biomarkers in order to map the web of interconnecting physiologic factors resulting in dysfunction and in disease.
The following factors are taken in to consideration in each case:
The detoxification and biotransformation performance, how is the elimination, what is the digestion and absorption capacity like, what is the immune response like? how much inflammation is on the go, the neurotransmitter status, the state of the emotions, the hormonal status, what is the energy level like, how is the body structure, the cardiovascular and circulation status, levels of oxidative stress.
The main goal is to have a proactive and preventive approach that shifts the focus from symptoms and illness, to wellness, and from disease, to a treatment that is based on functional integration: balance between all the hormones, the digestion, the neurotransmitters, the circulation, the immune system, the generated energy in the cells, the degree of toxic accumulation, the gut, the liver and their capacity to detoxify and to protect.
One should look at health as a positive vitality rather than the absence of disease.
Converting a static diagnosis into a dynamic process: thanks to the patients history, the antecedents, the triggers, the mediators that keep the pathological process active. Identifying the Core Clinical imbalances and prioritising their impact on one’s health. Recognition of influential lifestyle factors such as sleep patterns, amount of exercise, nutrition, state of emotions …
Two simple questions one should ask oneself:
First of all: Does the patient need to get rid of something: for example heavy metals from teeth fillings or from contaminated food, are there air or food born allergens, are there food intolerances, is there an under lying chronic infection such as Candida Albicans, Ricketsia, Mycoplasma …
Is the daily stress excessive and having an impact on the other neurotransmitters such as gaba, dopamine or on serotonin?
Second question: is this patient lacking in something that is preventing an optimal function (in other words, is there a deficiency of minerals, vitamins, or amino acids that are having a direct impact on the normal cell function and there fore affecting the health and causing a disease?
A plan of action will be programmed based on the pattern and the cause of the clinical imbalance:
Beginning with lifestyle changes: includes nutrition and exercise, stress management, identifying and removing reactive foods, repairing the gut, optimising nutrient status, balancing the hormones and lowering the toxic load.
Determining the macronutrient needs (B6, B12, Folic Acid, Methionine, Vitamin D, Magnesium, Omega 3 fatty acids …) tailored to each individual’s genetic background. Treatment of the gut dysfunction and of any bacterial overgrowth in the small and large intestines causing intestinal permeability.
What conditions can you expect to get results from the functional medical approach?
Crohn’s disease, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Psoriases, Eczema, Osteoarthritis, all digestive problems, Chronic headaches, Menopause, Andropause, Enlarged prostate, Insulin Resistance, Diabetes, Hypoglycaemia, Thyroid disorders, heart conditions, Fatigue, Adrenal exhaustion, Attention deficit disorders, Alzheimer’s disease, Fibromyalgia…