Functional medicine aims to treat you as a whole person more than one specific problem. Usually the first step is to make healthy changes in lifestyle, diet, and overall outlook. Although this is a simple and non-invasive approach, it takes time, commitment and motivation to change habits that often times have been developed over years.
This is certainly more difficult than taking a pill or rubbing an ointment, but the results often last longer with little to no side effects. Unlike synthetic medicine that enters the body and forces a physiological response, lifestyle changes work with the body to gradually achieve balance and better health.
With these differences, it’s apparent that conventional medicine is needed in emergency and acute situations, such as a life-threatening situation like anaphylactic shock, while functional medicine is better suited to reverse a chronic condition.
So why are people with diabetes or high blood pressure treated with life-long medication? The answer lies in the type of medical care they received. Most conventional or allopathic doctors are trained in the conventional western model of medicine; therefore, they utilize medication to reverse the symptoms of chronic disease.
A functional medicine doctor looks at these conditions as an effect of some cause, and would put more emphasis on changing the actions that caused the overall outcome, which could be diabetes, high blood pressure, etc. It should be noted that functional medicine doctors can and sometimes do prescribe prescription medications when needed, but that is not their first-line approach.
Functional Medicine has been used for the following chronic conditions:
- Chronic Headaches
- Autoimmune Disease
- Gluten Intolerance/Celiac
- Digestive Issues
- Thyroid issues
- High Blood Pressure
- High Cholesterol