What is Functional Medicine?
Functional medicine is an evolution in the practice of medicine that better addresses the healthcare needs of the 21st century. By shifting the traditional disease-centered focus of medical practice to a more patient-centered approach, functional medicine addresses the whole person, not just an isolated set of symptoms. Functional medicine practitioners spend time with their patients, listening to their histories and looking at the interaction among genetic, environmental, and lifestyle factors that can influence long-term health and complex, chronic disease.
Why do we need Functional Medicine?
Our society is experiencing a sharp increase in the number of people who suffer from complex, chronic diseases, such as diabetes, heart disease, cancer, mental illness, and autoimmune disorders like rheumatoid arthritis.
The system of medicine practiced by most physicians is oriented toward acute care, the diagnosis and treatment of trauma or illness that is of short duration and in need of urgent care, such as appendicitis or a broken leg. Physicians apply specific, prescribed treatments such as drugs or surgery that aim to treat the immediate problem or symptom.
Unfortunately, the acute-care approach to medicine lacks the proper methodology and tools for preventing and treating complex, chronic illness. In most cases it does not take into account the unique genetic makeup of each individual or factors such as environmental exposures to toxins and the aspects of today’s lifestyle that have a direct influence on the rise in chronic disease in modern Western society.
How is Functional Medicine Different that Traditional Medicine?
Functional medicine involves understanding the origins, prevention, and treatment of complex, chronic disease. Hallmarks of a functional medicine approach include:
Patient-centered. The focus of functional medicine is on patient-centered care, promoting health as a positive vitality, beyond just the absence of disease. By listening to the patient and learning his or her story, the practitioner brings the patient into the discovery process and tailors treatments that address the individual’s unique needs.
An integrative, science-based healthcare approach. Functional medicine practitioners look “upstream” to consider the complex web of interactions in the patient’s history, physiology, and lifestyle that can lead to illness. The unique genetic makeup of each patient is considered, along with both internal (mind, body and spirit) and external (physical and social environment) factors that affect total functioning.
Integrating the best medical practices. Functional medicine integrates traditional Western medical practices with what are sometimes considered “alternative” or “integrative” medicine, creating a focus on prevention through nutrition, diet, and exercise; use of the latest laboratory testing and other diagnostic techniques; and prescribed combinations of drugs and/or botanical medicines, supplements, therapeutic diets, detoxification programs, or stress-management techniques.
Functional Medicine has helped people with....
• Weight management
• Learning Difficulties
• Irritable Bowel Syndrome
• Hormonal Imbalances
And much more
Tools used in Functional Medicine Assessment....
• DNA testing
• Functional Blood Chemistry Analysis
Using blood chemistry, Dr. Knafla analyzes your unique physiology in an objective way. Blood analysis is the best and cheapest way to get an overall view of the function of the systems of the body. Functional blood chemistry analysis allows Dr. Knafla to scientifically identify the root cause of many symptoms.
• Functional Endocrinology Analysis
The endocrine system is an internal communication system of glands and hormones in your body. It is made up of the hypothalamus, pituitary gland, thyroid, testes, ovaries, and adrenal glands. Traditional endocrinology is focused on finding a hormone deficiency and then giving that hormone to the patient in the form of a shot, cream, pill, or pellet. While your body now has the hormone, the dysfunctioning gland is still dysfunctional. In functional endocrinology, we ask the questions: Why are the hormones not balanced? What can be done to help with endocrine health and wellness?
These are important questions.• Gastrointestinal Testing
Using the latest gastrointestinal testing technology, we ensure the most accurate results to help patients with leaky gut and gut flora imbalances. Older methods of intestinal stool tests relied on microscopic examination and culturing of the various bacteria, yeast, and parasites that live in the intestines for examination. Recently, newer technology that analyzes the DNA of organisms in your stool has become available. This allows for a dramatic increase in testing accuracy, health and wellness.• Immune System Analysis
Often, the immune system is culpable in full-body chronic health issues including autoimmune diseases and allergies. Picture your immune system like the army. You want your army fully capable of taking out an invader (a germ), and protect the nation (you). You don’t want it weak or unable to protect you, but you don’t want it overactive either (who wants the army in your living room?)
An overactive immune system can promote inflammation, aches and pains, heart disease and a myriad of other health problems. An underactive immune system leaves you open to infection an infection and sickness after sickness. In the most extreme circumstances (called autoimmune disease) your own immune system (army) has turned against you and is actually attacking your own body as if it were an invader! We can test the immune system to make sure your army is running efficiently. Many people with chronic health problems suffer from autoimmune diseases, chronic viral infections, and sustained inflammation which tears down their body and ruins their health
Determine your allergic response to various foodstuffs with our food allergy testing services. You may learn that, if you avoid certain foods, you’ll feel fine.