Functional Medicine Physician:
and a regular physician is the philosophy by which they practice.
If what you are looking for is a quick fix, such as drugs or surgery, then likely a functional medicine physician will not be your best option. And in fact, traditional forms of medicine may be a better option for you. But, if you want to keep all parts of your body, be healthier than you ever have been, and walk this road naturally, then a functional medicine physician may be your best choice. But, this road may take longer and require much more effort on your part than take this pill or that or simply showing up to appointments. Core to functional medicine philosophy is that you are a critical part of the healing process, because, it is very possible, that you are the one contributing to your illness.
what to look for in a functional medicine physician
1. One thing that we'd recommend, after years of experience, is to find a practitioner with extensive, reliable testing to ensure a proper diagnosis and plan of action.
There are many natural practitioners that do a lot of good work, but it can be defeating to feel like you are guessing at a problem, and therefore guessing at a solution.
The first step in identifying a solution is to clearly identify a problem. This may sound obvious, but it seems that in the natural healing arts world there is a lot of intuition and assumption.
At Thrive Health Systems, we test using stool, saliva, urine, blood and many other diagnostic tools. If we can't clearly identify a problem, then we will not guess at a solution. Not only can that be dangerous, but it can also try patients' patience, and often patience is key to the healing process.
2. Just at the medical model encourages that you go to a primary care doctor before you move on to a specialist, we'd also recommend that a functional medicine doctor with a big and general vision of health is often a good first step, rather than a specialist in say, heavy metal toxicity, or something like that.
The reason is that specialists can "forsake the forest for the trees." A specialist can tend to see everything as their specialty. In the example of a heavy metal toxicity specialist, everyone's problem tends to be heavy metal toxicity.
3. Find a functional medicine physician who starts simple, before getting complex. Food allergies can be one of the greatest stessors on your body. Simple dietary changes have helped patients lose 20 lbs in three weeks, reduce bloating and/or constipation, and sleep soundly through the night. No matter how confusing your problem may seem to you, it may be a simple solution. Go to a functional medicine physician who starts with the simple things rather than, say, uber amounts of supplements.