Functional medicine is a field of healthcare grounded in science-based systems biology. It is an approach that aims to better understand the deep web-like interconnections of bodily systems - the web-like relationship between all aspects of health. It seeks to identify and address the root cause of disease and views the body as an integrated whole system. The emphasis is on treating the whole system, not just symptoms - treating the person who has the disease, not the disease the person has.
Functional Medicine is grounded in the following principles:
Biochemical individuality - based on the concepts of genetic and environmental uniqueness
A patient-centered approach, rather than a disease-centered approach to treatment
The dynamic balance of internal and external factors in a person's body, mind and spirit
Web-like interconnections of inernal physiological factors
Identification of health as a positive vitality - not merely the absence of disease
Promotion of organ reserve as the means to enhance the health span of each person
Disease occurs because of the body's attempt to correct underlying imbalances. Functional medicine understands the inner workings and function of our cells and biological systems within the context of our entire organism and aims to restore these systems to restore health and vitality.
The study of function explains that every naturally occurring food, nutrient and dietary pattern has a specific purpose and design. Viewing food and nutrients in terms of function allows for a broader understanding of nutrients to one beyond calories and structure. Functionally, food contains molecules that are necessary, purposeful, designed to support life, promote well-being and optimal health. Functional nutrition understands the roles of these molecules, and adapts the application of those molecules to meet the unique genetic, environmental and lifestyle needs of each person.
From a functional perspective, health depends on our biological terrain which determines resiliency and our capacity for self-repair.
Functional Nutrition is the core modality of Functional Medicine.
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