Functional medicine can help us improve our mental health as well as our physical health
Except functional medicine doesn’t really separate the two. Our mental wellbeing can be directly connected to our physical wellbeing and vice versa. The mind is effected by different organs of the body and vice versa. Depression and anxiety do not necessarily only originate in the mind. Alzheimers disease for instance has been linked to gut health and there is emerging research showing that problems with neurotransmitter transmission can begin in the gut rather than the brain. Blood sugar and nutritional deficiencies can also be associated with brain dysfunction.
“Functional medicine examines all the factors that may have impact on the patient’s condition as opposed to conventional medicine that only concentrates on the disease itself.” (1)
Functional medicine is interested in the underlying causes of the patient’s problems rather than the symptoms of them. The aim is to gain a deep understanding of the patient through functional and genetic tests, medical history, behaviours and physical examination to identify any imbalances that may be causing the problem. Behavioural change can be important as well and practitioners will often work alongside psychotherapists and even physical trainers to ensure the interventions are holistic and address all aspects of the underlying causes of the imbalances.