Table of Contents
Functional medicine takes a different approach to health care than conventional medicine. Read on to learn 10 key ways functional medicine practitioners differ in their methods of patient care.
Taking a Whole-Person Approach
Rather than focusing on isolated symptoms, functional medicine UK looks at the whole person to uncover the root causes of illness. Practitioners from clinics like Urban Wellness get to know the patient, their health history, environment, lifestyle, and genetic predispositions. This comprehensive understanding informs a tailored treatment plan.
Identifying Unique Biochemical Imbalances
Functional medicine lab testing goes far beyond the typical blood tests, helping to identify precise biochemical and nutritional imbalances particular to each patient. This allows functional medicine practitioners to detect issues that often go unnoticed in conventional medicine.
Providing Personalised Care
Since functional medicine addresses the distinct nutritional needs, lifestyle factors, environmental inputs and genetic makeup of each patient, the treatment approach is fully personalised. A functional medicine practitioner will develop treatment plans tailored to help individuals bring their unique bodies back into balance.
Using Food as Medicine
A functional nutritionist uses food and nutrition therapies as frontline interventions before prescription medications or surgical procedures. Therapeutic diets help balance hormones, blood sugar, the microbiome and other body systems to alleviate symptoms and promote wellbeing.
Focusing on Disease Prevention
Rather than waiting for a diagnosis of illness, functional medicine puts the emphasis on disease prevention and optimising health. Through nutritional therapies, lifestyle changes and early intervention for imbalances, the functional medicine approach seeks to prevent chronic and degenerative disease.
Supporting the Body’s Innate Healing Capacity
The human body has its own innate capacity to heal when supported properly. Functional medicine practitioners identify obstacles hindering the body’s self-healing abilities and employ methods to remove those barriers, allowing natural healing mechanisms to come forth.
Addressing the Root Causes of Disease
Functional medicine searches for and treats the underlying causes of chronic disease, such as inflammation, infections, environmental toxins, poor diet, stress and hormone imbalances. Conventional approaches often just treat symptoms, allowing underlying dysfunctions to progress.
Utilising Advanced Lab Testing
In addition to standard medical testing, functional medicine may use specialised labs to test biomarkers for nutrient status, blood sugar regulation, digestive function, inflammation and toxic burden. This allows a fuller picture of what is happening inside the body to inform appropriate treatment.
Incorporating Integrative Therapies
Functional medicine draws from both conventional and alternative therapies. Alongside medications or surgery when needed, integrative therapies like clinical nutrition, herbal medicine, acupuncture, mindfulness and nutraceutical supplements may be used.
Partnering with Patients
Functional medicine involves patients as active partners in their care. Practitioners educate and empower individuals to make lifestyle changes and self-care decisions informed by biological testing and science. Ongoing collaboration helps sustain patient engagement and accountability in improving health.
A New Paradigm in Health Care
Functional medicine operates under a new model for diagnosing and treating chronic disease, using systems biology research and advanced lab testing paired with integrative therapies. This innovative paradigm continues to evolve and offers great promise in stemming the tide of chronic illness.
Functional medicine diverges from standard health care in numerous ways. By addressing underlying imbalances unique to each person, functional medicine allows true, patient-specific care for optimal wellbeing. Give functional medicine a look when seeking to resolve complex or chronic health conditions.