Overview and simplification for the public
Accepted definition and trends
Importance for progress in medical practice
Functional Medicine: The approach to medical practice or treatments that focus on optimal functioning of the body and its organs, usually involving systems of holistic or alternative medicine.
A majority of Functional Medicine deals with sub-clinical imbalances or more subtle disease states while investigating a patient’s “Chief Complaint”. As it is more acknowledged that a patient must be assessed holistically to arouse their organic system’s health defenses, the main problem a patient complains about is identified as a symptom of a number of imbalances which potentiate each other or contribute to the chief complaint. In other words, some imbalance, toxicity, deficiency or excess in any respect must be considered as contributing to the main problem.
Integrative Medicine allows the contribution of a number of Alternative Medical approaches along with Biomedicine, or Allopathic Medicine, to weigh-in on a diagnosis and restoration of good health.
Where Naturopathy is important is to view immune enhancement, regeneration and whole-person, holistic treatment of disease or prevention while limiting drug use to a minimum, but by diet counseling, psycho-emotional, exercise, massage, sleep hygiene, herbal remedies and other alternatives to pharmaceuticals; it weighs-in heavily on de-tox, natural & organic foods, down-regulating inflammation, up-regulation of immunity and regeneration from complete nurturing.
The modern Naturopathic Physician uses Integrative and Functional Medicine approaches. The curriculum of an ND, Naturopathy Doctor, has shifted from denouncing allopathic medicine and pharmaceuticals to acknowledging it as a valuable tool. NDs and MD physicians are joining rapidly as a Functional Medicine team as many evidence-based results show disease to be reversible through proper nutrition, exercise, massage, Chinese medicine, herbal tonics, etc. which stimulate occult weaknesses (diseases) back to good health.
This ultimate investigative & holistic approach revels in the stability that a drug or modern surgical interventions can provide but seek to enrich the organic human mechanisms to restore its own immune and regenerative reflexes. Each person has a different health formula which all laboratory and physical findings may not identify. The name “Vitamin Agent” suggests that individual nutrient balances are vital to then complete restoration of a human being to optimal health.