Functional medicine is a revolution of the way we view health and disease within health care that has flourished around the world over the last decades because it is highly effective at improving or reversing chronic diseases that were thought to be incurable.
It is effective because it embraces a different way of thinking. Instead of approaching health problems in a linear way that starts with a diagnosis that leads to a treatment (diagnosis > medication or surgery or herb or supplement), it uses web-like thinking which considers multiple, interrelated core physiologic imbalances, genetic factors and environmental triggers as contributing to the manifestation of disease. Once all the factors are identified, then a comprehensive program to correct them is designed that includes modifiable lifestyle factors as well as various therapies. Nature does the rest!
Because core imbalances may go undetected for a long time before the diagnosis of a disease is made, correcting imbalances early may prevent the development of a chronic disease in the future. Therefore, not only is this approach a way to restore health by correcting these core imbalances; but also a way to prevent future disease as well. The result is to effectively enhance our health-span (the years of full health, vitality and function) not only our lifespan.
The Institute for Functional Medicine website also has a wealth of information for patients.