About Functional Medicine
The Future of Medicine is here. Combining advanced diagnostics with nutritional medicine and targeted allopathic treatments, Functional Medicine is the fastest growing form of medicine today. Senara is at the forefront of this emerging care model, bringing our mantra of Live Life Well to its full potential.
What is Functional Medicine?
To put it simply, Functional Medicine treats the cause of chronic disease, not the symptoms. By addressing the underlying source of the health impairment, systemic healing can take place. This not only improves symptoms but also improves overall well-being. It is a patient-centered, whole-person approach to medicine.
Functional Medicine practitioners are like detectives. They gather as much information about their patient as possible—from basic health history to blood work and more—to solve their chronic conditions. Everything from a simple case of recurring dermatitis, to Fibromyalgia, Rheumatoid Arthritis and other autoimmune disorders. By looking at the broader picture, Functional Medicine practitioners are better able to look past an isolated set of symptoms to define what is causing disease in the body. Thus, they are able to provide more targeted treatment that goes beyond symptom management. True healing, both inside and out, can occur.
What Functional Medicine Treats
Functional Medicine is effective in addressing issues related to a wide range of medical issues. Autoimmune diseases, chronic fatigue, hormone imbalance, digestive issues, sexual dysfunction, skin conditions, sleep disorders, and many more common and complex ailments can be treated.
Targeted diagnostic tests provide a deeper look in to potential imbalances and dysfunction that may be causing symptoms of disease to manifest. Depleted nutrients, hormonal imbalances, thyroid dysfunction and other indicators in body function can be addressed to reverse, stop, or slow the progression of many chronic health conditions.
For example, Food Sensitivity Testing may indicate a severe intolerance to gluten. By removing gluten from the patient’s diet, the internal distress and inflammation caused by consuming gluten is then eliminated. The body begins to heal itself and chronic conditions associated with the food intolerance will subside. A few common diseases associated with gluten intolerance include: GERD, digestive distress, Hashimoto’s, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Fibromyalgia, chronic dermatitis, allergies and asthma, and migraines. Additionally, hormone testing may indicate that Estrogen or Testoterone levels are low in that same patient. BioIdentical Hormone Replacement Therapy can rebalance depleted levels, which eliminates the patient’s fatigue, loss of libido, and sleep disturbances.
A wide range of chronic health conditions have the potential to treated with Functional Medicine approaches.
Food As Medicine
One of the tenants of Functional Medicine is the idea that what we eat can often contribute to chronic health conditions. Emerging research supports this idea.
The standard American diet is overloaded with sugar, salt, and fat, the likes of which our ancestors never consumed. This includes sugar, salt, and fat substitutes, like margarine, aspartamine, and olestra. And as we eat outside of the home more, we are eating less whole foods and increasing our intake of processed foods. Overconsumption of all these things has been linked to heart disease, high cholesterol, obesity, diabetes and virtually every major health condition that plagues our society today.
By altering our diet to focus on whole foods—veggies, fruits, grains, etc—healing can happen. In many cases, undiagnosed Food Sensitivities may be to blame for excess weight, fatigue, headaches and other unexplained health issues. In particular, gluten and dairy intolerance may play a significant role in autoimmune disorders such as Rheumatoid Arthritis, Hashimoto’s, Fibromyalgia, and more.
Changing your diet can change your life. Inflammation is greatly reduced, health is restored, and vitality returns.
The Whole Person Approach
Our bodies are a complex system of organs, tissues, and fluids. Our biochemistry is influenced by all of these systems working together in harmony. An imbalance in any part of these systems can create a ripple effect throughout the body, leading to dysfunction and disease.
Functional Medicine uses state of the art diagnostics to make sure every body system is working properly. Thyroid functioning, hormonal balance, cholesterol, blood sugars and more can bring all the pieces of the puzzle together.
The Functional Medicine Difference
In today’s society, chronic diseases are on the rise. There is a direct correlation with the increase in disease and obesity with the modernization of our diet and lifestyles. We are busier, leading to higher stress. We eat out more, relying on fast and processed foods that are depleted of nutrients and hard to digest. Our Medical system is overburdened and over-reliant on prescription drugs to get results. Modern medicine often focuses on acute care and symptom management before all else.
The truth is, many doctors simply lack the resources and training to focus on disease prevention. And those who do may struggle to find the time to educate their patients and follow through with their results.
Functional Medicine seeks to refocus healthcare on the patient in a meaningful way. By integrating both holistic and allopathic treatment methods, patients are treated from the inside out. Care is science based and forward thinking. As no individual’s biochemistry is the same, no health care solution is the same. When we view the person as a whole, we can treat them better and improve results. This approach is the Functional Medicine difference. Individualized, integrated, whole-person care.