Functional Medicine

What is Functional Medicine?

Functional Medicine is a science-based, natural way to attain optimal health. Instead of treating health issues as isolated sets of symptoms and disease, it uses a holistic approach to treat individuals who may have bodily symptoms, imbalances and dysfunctions. It evaluates the implications of genetic, environmental and lifestyle pressures on your long-term health. It treats the person versus treating the symptoms. A disease such as diabetes, cancer or fibromyalgia might be visible at the surface. Functional Medicine practitioners look below the surface where the cause(s) may lie in altered physiology. Almost always, the cause of the disease and its symptoms is an underlying dysfunction and/or an imbalance of bodily systems.

Treatment for symptoms of disease above the surface rarely leads to long-term relief and vibrancy. Identifying and treating the underlying root cause or causes, using principles of Functional Medicine, provide a more effective and enduring resolution for a patient’s health challenge. Functional Medicine restores balance in the body’s primary physiological processes with a focus on the patient’s lifelong optimal health and vitality. In today’s health care system, a medical management model that works well for acute health problems is applied to chronic health problems, where it is much less successful. The result is often symptom suppression rather than true cure of disease.

What is Functional Medicine?

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“The good physician treats the disease; the great physician treats the patient who has the disease.”

— Sir William Osler, the “father of modern medicine” and one of the first professors at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine

A Two Pronged Healing Approach

To battle chronic health conditions, Functional Medicine uses two scientific principles: 1. Add what’s lacking in the body to nudge its physiology back to a state of optimal functioning. 2. Remove anything that impedes the body from moving toward this optimal state of physiology. Your body naturally wants to be healthy. However, you might be missing components needed by your body to function at its best, or something might be standing in the way of optimal functioning. Functional Medicine first identifies the factors responsible for the malfunctioning. Then it deals with those factors in ways that are appropriate to an individual’s unique and particular situation. Functional Medicine practitioners approach treatment with a combination of natural agents (such as nutraceuticals), nutritional and lifestyle changes, spiritual/emotional counseling, and pharmaceuticals, if necessary to prod a patient’s physiology back to an optimal state. In addition, educating patients about their condition empowers them to take charge of their own health, ultimately leading to greater success in treatment.

Two-Pronged Healing Approach

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Your Functional Medicine Experience

When you consult a Functional Medicine practitioner such as Dr. Beaulieu, the first step is always to explore your health history. Practitioners are trained on how to unravel and translate a complicated story. Often, clues in the story lead to identification of key system imbalances. The next learnings come from a comprehensive physical examination. The final information is derived from advanced laboratory testing. Innovative, cutting-edge lab tests help the practitioner look deeply into a patient’s physiology to identify how it has been compromised and how physiological balance can be restored. With the development and application of an individualized wellness plan, a patient of Functional Medicine can expect his or her symptoms to diminish in severity and realize a renewed sense of wellbeing and enhanced health.

25% of adults have two or more chronic health conditions.
50% of adults have at least one chronic health condition.
Chronic diseases account for 86% of all healthcare costs ($3.2 trillion in 2015 and growing).