The Institute for Functional Medicine
describes functional medicine as 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 interactions among genetic, environmental, and lifestyle factors that
can influence long-term health and complex, chronic disease. In this way,
functional medicine supports the unique expression of health and vitality
for each individual.
do we need Functional Medicine?
According to the Institute for Functional
Medicine, we need functional medicine because:
Our society is
experiencing a sharp increase in the number of people who suffer from complex,
such as diabetes, heart disease, cancer, mental illness, and autoimmune disorders like
rheumatoid arthritis and Hashimoto’s.
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
acute-care approach to medicine lacks the proper methodology and tools for
preventing and treating complex, chronic disease. 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
There’s a huge gap
between research and the way doctors practice. The gap between emerging
research in basic sciences and integration into medical practice is enormous—as
long as 50 years particularly in the area of complex, chronic illness.
Most physicians are
not adequately trained to assess the underlying causes of complex chronic
disease and to apply strategies such as nutrition, diet, and exercise to
both treat and prevent these illnesses in their patients.
How is Functional Medicine different?
medicine involves understanding the origins, prevention, and treatment of
complex, chronic disease. Hallmarks of a functional medicine approach
Patient-centered care. 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, Dr. Jamieson brings the patient into the discovery
process and tailors treatments that address your unique needs.
An integrative, science-based healthcare
Jamieson looks “upstream” to consider the complex web of interactions in
your 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 best medical practices. Dr. Jamieson 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,
muscle testing, qEEG brain mapping and other diagnostic techniques; and prescribed
combinations of chiropractic treatments, botanical medicines, supplements,
therapeutic diets, detoxification programs, neurofeedback therapy,
stress-management techniques amongst others.
Dr. Jamieson assesses the patient’s fundamental
clinical imbalances through
careful history taking, physical examination, and laboratory testing.
He considers multiple factors, including:
Environmental inputs – The
air you breathe and the water you drink, the particular diet you eat, the
quality of the food available to you, your level of physical exercise, and
toxic exposures all affect your health.
Mind-body elements – Psychological,
spiritual, and social factors, or traumas you have experienced all can have
a profound influence on your health. Considering these areas helps Dr.
Jamieson see your health in the context of you as a whole person, not just
your physical symptoms.
Genetic makeup – Although
individual genes may make you more susceptible to some diseases, your DNA
is not an unchanging blueprint for your life. Emerging research shows that
your genes may be influenced by everything in your environment, as well as
your experiences, attitudes, and beliefs. That means it is possible to
change the way genes are activated and expressed.
Through assessment of the underlying causes and triggers of
dysfunction, Dr. Jamieson is able to understand how key processes are
affected. These are the body’s processes that keep you alive. Some occur
at the cellular level and involve how cells function, repair, and maintain themselves. These processes are
related to larger biological functions, such as:
how your body rids itself of toxins
regulation of hormones
regulation of neurotransmitters
immune system function
digestion and absorption of nutrients
health of the digestive tract
psychological and spiritual equilibrium
how you produce energy
All of these processes are influenced by
both environmental factors and your genetic make-up; when they are
disturbed or imbalanced, they lead to symptoms, which can lead to disease
if effective interventions are not applied.
Integrative chiropractic care is a
comprehensive approach to treatment.
Dr. Jamieson can address most imbalances in functionality; some can
be completely restored to optimum function, and others can be substantially
Prevention is paramount.
every complex, chronic disease is preceded by long-term disturbances in
Changing how the systems function can have a major impact on your
Jamieson has examined and integrated a wide array of available
interventions and customizes a treatment plan including those with the most
impact on your underlying functionality.
Dr. Jamieson has a large integrated tool kit.
Jamieson believes that his integrative protocol helps him heal patients
faster and more effectively. Treatments may include combinations of chiropractic
procedures, botanical medicines, nutritional supplements, therapeutic
diets, or detoxification programs and neurofeedback therapy. They may also
include counseling on lifestyle, exercise, or stress-management techniques.
The patient becomes a partner.
a patient, you become an active partner. This allows you to really be in
charge of improving your own health and changing the outcome of disease.
For more information about functional
medicine, visit the Institute
for Functional Medicine.
make sure to check often for new papers and articles.