Functional Medicine seeks to determine the root cause of a symptom, disease or ailment rather than identifying a drug to mask symptoms. While this approach is more time consuming and requires active involvement from both the patient and physician, functional medicine can correct underlying dysfunction in the body which can potentially stop or delay many future disease states. Functional medicine involves evaluating a person’s lifestyle and finding balance; digging into genetics and imbalances and correcting them with individualized plans.
The illustration on the left, developed by the Institute for Functional Medicine (IFM), provides a good visual representation of the concept. When I take on a new patient, he or she completes an extensive online assessment, and by the time we finish our first appointment, my patients understand their health in the context of this framework. For many patients, this creates “aha moments” as they piece together the puzzle of their health challenges.
Is Functional Medicine "Mainstream"?
Twenty years ago, the answer would certainly have been "no". Over the last decade, however, functional medicine has become more mainstream as the concepts and practices attributed to the term continue to demonstrate positive results in independent clinical trials.
This three minute video is worth watching. The video highlights Cleveland Clinic’s Institute for Functional Medicine and its IRB Approved study, which examines the effectiveness of functional medicine by utilizing PROMIS data and measures total cost of care.
My Approach to Prescribing Medications
My Approach to Providing Supplements
I subscribe to the adage, "Food is Medicine". My ultimate goal is to unleash the healing power of the body, which includes eating the right foods and reducing the overall pill consumption of my patients. I do advocate the use of supplements and sell them to my member patients. However, just as I believe MDs should not take money from pharmaceutical companies as it could create a conflict of interest, I do not profit from supplement sales. This saves my members anywhere from 40% to 50% off retail prices and is one of many Flourish Health Member Benefits.