Functional medicine is breaking new ground in healthcare. It draws on systems biology, which is an integrated approach to deciphering complex biological systems. Key is the knowledge that networks in living organisms are more than the sum of their parts. In healthcare this means focusing on identifying and addressing root causes of disease. In other words a person’s genetic, environmental and lifestyle factors are key to their health. Also each symptom may be one of many contributing factors to illness. Functional Medicine finds what each individual needs to restore balance to their health.
Functional medicine as practiced by IBS Clinics will address you as a whole person, rather than a set of symptoms in isolation. As practitioners we spend a significant amount of time with our patients, assessing, listening and analysing their histories and comparing interactions among genetic, lifestyle and environmental factors. These are what influences long-term health and chronic/complex conditions. We engage with our patients in a therapeutic partnership to understand and tackle the underlying causes of disease. This enables us to fully support and promote each individual’s unique expression of vitality and health.
Functional Medicine and Nutrition
Nutritional therapy stresses an understanding of how environmental and lifestyle factors influence the emergence and progression of disease. So, specifically this means:
- Nutritionists focus on unraveling underlying imbalances causing health issues rather than simply suppressing symptoms
A powerful clinical model to assess, treat, and prevent chronic disease.
Enables nutritional therapists to practice predictive, personalised, proactive medicine. Thereby empowering patients to take an active role in their health.
- Leverages the powers of nutrition to use food as medicine
Best medical practice integration
Functional medicine is the interface of tested Western medical practices with what may be considered “integrative” or “alternative” medicine. It focuses on:
- Prevention through exercise, diet and nutrition.
Use of advanced diagnostic techniques and laboratory testing
Prescribing various combinations of medical drugs and/or botanical supplements/medicines, other supplements, detoxification programs, therapeutic diets and stress-management techniques.
Tracey Randell of IBS Clinics is a member of the Institute for Functional Medicine.
This illustration shows the Functional Medicine Tree, which represents the core aspects of the paradigm and highlights the difference between conventional medical care and Functional Medicine. To find out more, visit the Institute for Functional Medicine website.
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