My training is based on something called Functional Medicine. This approach is centred around the person, rather than the disease state. The medical system isolates the body into different parts and uses symptoms to diagnose a disease accordingly, in the relevant part of the body. It does not always relate a problem in one area of the body, to another.
Functional Medicine acknowledges the fact that the body is a complex, interrelated network of systems. It works on the basis that lack of function in one system may be due to lack of function across many other systems. As such, it uses symptoms as ‘clues’ to uncover the root cause of health issues and to understand how normal function may have been disrupted. In this way, it is addressing the whole system, not just the symptoms.
Taking this investigative approach, along with the use of diagnostic tests, allows for a targeted strategy to re-balance and restore functionality across the whole body. Functional Medicine is tailored to the individual, recognising that everyone is biochemically unique in their nutritional needs.
This approach is gaining much momentum within the medical community and you may have heard it referred to as ‘Lifestyle Medicine’. The benefits of implementing a Functional Medicine approach for various chronic, complex pain syndromes is now widely recognised. Forward thinking medical professionals are now seeking to educate themselves and work alongside Functional Medical Professionals like myself.
I have recently trained as a nutrigenomics practitioner with Lifecode GX.
Genomics testing is a unique way of investigating the roots of the functional medicine tree, as variations in our genome (DNA) are what makes each of us unique and can have significant impacts on our life and health. Whilst one gene variant can make a difference, most chronic diseases result from the interplay between multiple common variants (SNPs) and environmental factors.
The DNA test panels look at different metabolic pathways in the body and this informs how inherited health risks can be mitigated through personalised nutrition and lifestyle change. I work with my clients to advise on the most appropriate panels to choose in relation to their health goals.
Genotype results are presented in easy to understand reports, in the context of nutrition and other environmental factors, such as sleep, stress, physical activity and chemicals that can influence them.
I can then provide in-depth insights to my clients into the risks or protective potential of each genotype, along with a plan to address these.
I am really excited to bring this area of testing into my clinic, as it offers exciting potential for long term influence on health.