Why Functional Medicine is it Legitimate and How it's the Future of Healthcare
Maybe you have heard of functional medicine and are wondering what exactly is this method, and how is it different from conventional medicine. You can read this article for an exact description on what Functional Medicine is and what kinds of problems it can help with.
In this post, I want to address the legitimacy of Functional Medicine. What kind of doctor is that? Well, that's a great question! There are many types of practitioners that practice functional medicine. It is actually a training and certification program that any licensed healthcare provider with the legal ability to diagnose and treat patients can go through. So, we have MD's, DO's, DC's (Chiropractors), NP's (Nurse practitioners), Pharmacists, ND's (Naturopaths) and a few other types of doctors or advanced care practitioners who are certified and practicing functional medicine.
We all come at this with different base training. When we go through functional medicine training, we are trained how to look at the body as a whole and help our patients find the root cause of their issues. This is what makes us functional - we are trying to find the driving force behind the symptoms. We look at labs for patterns and how one system in the body can be affected by another system. We are trained to see labs differently than most doctors. We look for healthy, optimal ranges instead of just ranges that label and diagnose diseases. In fact, we have a whole arsenal of tests that most doctors are not even offering to their patients. If we need that level of information, these tests can be fantastic to help us get our patients the answers they need to get feeling better!
When choosing a functional medicine provider, look for someone who is certified. That will allow you to know that they have taken the time to complete several hundred hours of additional training. There are many people claiming to practice "Functional Medicine" but are not certified. That does not mean that they are not educated or good, but going through the certification process certainly means that they are serious about learning as much as they can and have investigated quite a bit of time to be the best at what they do. I completed the certification process through Functional Medicine University and feel like it provided tremendous value and I learned so much that I use on a daily basis. I learned from all kinds of providers and I am very blessed to have had the opportunity to learn from these wonderful providers.
I hope that helps you get a picture of what kind of training functional medicine doctors go through. I think that not only is functional medicine a legitimate form of health care, it is the future as well. I believe that after the pandemic in 2020, many began to have questions about healthcare and started to wonder if we were always hearing the full story. Many are also frustrated with short visits where the only solution is prescription medication or surgery. All reactionary and symptom based instead of root cause based. I think people are awakening to the idea of doctors partnering up with them to identify root causes and use diet, lifestyle and natural methods whenever possible.
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To your health,