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What is Functional Medicine?​

What is Functional Medicine?

It’s time for a new approach to health. True Health Care. Not Sick Care.

The traditional medical model is based on treating symptoms. This is typically done using pills, or surgery with little attention to the individual with their unique needs and circumstances. Each person has their own genome, which expresses itself differently. This is not simply from one person to another but month to month your genes can be turning on and off based on factors including your environment and your physiology, 

This is one of the reasons why  a pill that is prescribed to you may not work the same as in someone else.

The Functional Medicine model is focused on Health. It seeks to discover the root cause of your symptoms, and correct the dysfunction.

Functional medicine recognizes you as a unique individual. Your genetics, your epigenetics,  your lifestyle and your bio-individuality. It looks at advanced markers that predict diseases like diabetes and heart disease, long before you have symptoms that take you to a Functional Medicine Doctor.

It looks at making you truly healthy, by restoring each physiologic system and cellular health to reverse symptoms and many diseases; and prevent chronic disabling disease before it starts.

Functional Medicine uses advanced testing like genetics, microbiome assessment, salivary hormone testing and advanced markers for heart disease and diabetes. This falls into the realm of Precision Medicine. The newest paradigm in advanced medical science.

The basis of Functional Medicine lies in the focus on YOU. From your childhood, your past trauma and relationships, your exposures (environmental, toxic and other), to your dietary preferences and tolerance to how your body functions (or not). 

Putting all these pieces together, a tailored approach is created to restore your health to best.

You can feel younger. Live longer and stronger.

Functional Medicine medications

For years, LIFESPAN was the goal of medical models. Increased lifespan.

Today the question is: to what end?

LIfespan is how long you live. Not how well you live.

HEALTHSPAN is how well you live.

With Functional Medicine, we look at merging healthspan and lifespan.

What this means is maximum health for as long as you live. No period of being kept alive, without the true health you need to enjoy every day.

Today, the  elderly are on multiple medications with numerous side effects that bridge the gap between healthspan and lifespan.

Do you want to be in a nursing home, having someone change your clothes, feed you and change your diaper?

Or do you want to take your last breath doing what you love and living independently?

We are all going to die someday. The question is how.

And this is where Functional Medicine helps you live your best life.

Is Functional Medicine For Me?

Although Functional medicine is beneficial to everyone, not  everyone is interested in Functional Medicine.

It takes a commitment to transforming your lifestyle to support your health.

There is an investment of time, planning and following new paradigms of science-based health information that may be rather different from what you may be familiar with.

An example of this is eating more fats and not counting calories. Or exercising less in some cases to improve energy and increase fat loss. It goes against most things you may have been taught and might practice. 

It shocks many people. The guidelines are customized to each individual based on what is found through the testing.

The most common patient is the one who cannot find solutions to their health after many Functional Medicine Doctor doctors office visits. They see specialists. They get tested. And yet their symptoms persist. OR the medications fail to produce the results they were supposed to.

Oftentimes, these patients are told, ‘Your tests are all normal. It’s in your head’. Or ‘Your tests are all normal so it must be due to aging’.

We know that in reality, age means very little. Many younger people are feeling more tired, have mood trouble, poor sleep, trouble losing weight, digestive symptoms and even sexual dysfunction. It is alarming how common this is.

Functional Medicine helps these patients feel normal again.

They get their lives back.

Functional medicine attracts another group of patients: those that do research, try biohacking and follow the science. They understand that aging can be slowed down, reversed and even prevented. They want to optimize their health span and prevent chronic disease before it starts. They want to embrace the science and art of longevity.

They already live a healthy life, and know they can reach the next level.

The ‘in between’ group of clients that seek out functional medicine are not ‘sick’ but they aren’t ‘well’ either.

No matter which group you fall into, the starting point is always the same

The approach may seem fairly standard at the outset, because the foundational steps are the starting point. After this, precision medicine, and targeted testing help us create the customized path forward for you.

The LiveYounger approach to Functional Medicine
The LiveYounger approach to Functional Medicine:

We start with a detailed questionnaire.

It helps us to better  understand you and everything that led to where you are today. Your family history is more important than you realize, even those things that seem arbitrary and unrelated.

How could there be a connection between addictions and allergies or asthma, mental health problems and autoimmune disease? There is! An in-depth family history provides immeasurable insight.

Reviewing the extensive questionnaire gives us clues about the health of your microbiome, your immune system, your brain health, cellular and metabolic functions, and more.

Assessing your toxic burden / liver congestion and your HPA axis (hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal axis) reserve and the status of your digestive system/ leaky gut is our starting point.

From your history, we  glean your genetic ability to process toxins and metabolites. We can then study your epigenetics and support turning off genes that direct disease and turning on protective genes for healthy aging.

Your symptoms, family history and blood tests can give clues to methylation and detoxification SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphisms) that may be affecting your health and contributing to your symptoms. It is common to have vague symptoms that do not meet traditional medical diagnoses, that are rooted in genetic ‘misprints’ that affect your liver enzyme systems.

Through slow accumulation of certain toxins and molecules, you can, over time,  develop health issues that do not show up in blood tests.

In Functional Medicine, it is common to hear, ‘my tests are all normal but I am not’.

When we look into your toxic burden and all the downstream impacts it has, we can start to turn the tide and restore health.

It is valuable to have your genome tested. However, much information and progress can be achieved without that specific test until you can order it.

Detailed Testing

The extensive information from your questionnaires, the first visit of getting to know you and all the information provided at the new patient teaching session helps us start a plan towards success. You will be relieved to find out that we can explain how you are feeling, why you are feeling that way and where we can start.

 It is common in most Functional Medicine Clinics to start with extensive private testing. It helps prove that something is wrong, even though the dozens of doctors you have seen or blood tests you have had couldn’t explain your symptoms. It is a very reasonable thing to do.

Most of these tests cost hundreds of dollars each. Your total cost of starting here, and the required follow up testing once your treatments start could cost you between twenty to thirty thousand dollars –  in your first year.

We chose to do it differently. Our clients typically invest $4500-6000 in their first year with the Functional Medicine costs decreasing with each subsequent year, as you regain your wellness and move into maintenance.

With over 50 years of combined experience in medicine, our Functional Medicine Doctors have a wealth of experience to offer.

Using this, combined with their in depth training in Functional Medicine and decades dedicated to true Functional Medicine practice and research: we can help you see results without all of the private testing being considered essential.

We already know you don’t feel as well as you could.

We already know that you have something wrong.

We start you on a path that would typically yield great results. Each step reveals the next step. If sophisticated, private testing is thought to be pivotal in helping you move forward, we will order it at that time. 

The most important reason is that truly listening to a patient, understanding all the things that contributed to the health decline and starting with the very foundations of Functional Medicine principles yield great results and are very cost effective.

At the bare minimum, we recommend everyone get the following testing Salivary hormone testing including a 4 point cortisol curve: 

Other tests that can give us valuable information on your Functional Medicine Testing path include

Functional Medicine is not a simple practice.

Every person comes to us with a different constellation of symptoms and contributing causes. The underlying malfunction of systems differs person to person and requires a customized and personalized approach.

It used to be called Anti-aging medicine. It evolved into Regenerative medicine. Then Functional Medicine. Now it has further evolved into ‘Precision Medicine’. This refers to using the advanced scientific testing available to predict and prevent health decline and reverse many diseases and symptoms. Functional Medicine has always embraced precision medicine and it is included in the practice of Functional Medicine since we started in this field 16 years ago.

We choose to utilize it judiciously.

3D medical background with DNA strands

NEXT LEVEL PRECISION MEDICINE

We are pleased to offer you the newest scientific breakthrough to Live Younger:

Epigenetic testing. (Measuring your biological clock).

Dr. Steve Horvath is a Professor in Human Genetics and Biostatistics at UCLA. Epigenetics is the study of changes in gene expression. The Horvath Clock determines your biological age. You can find out if you are actually older or younger than your last birthday.

When he discovered this method to measure biological age, it was the most accurate test in the world. 

His research continues and now we have Grimage. Yes, how fast are you hurtling towards meeting the Grim Reaper? This is the most state of the art testing available to you through Dr. Steve Horvath’s team at Live Younger.

What this means is that you can measure your biological age at a gene level. You can then see how the strategies and methods you implement are effective by measuring how much younger you are after starting your journey.

Genotype is the genetic code you were born with. Phenotype is how the genes express themselves.

You may have heard, ‘Your genes are not your destiny’. Even if you have the gene for a certain disease, like breast or prostate cancer, or dementia; you ultimately have over 80% control over whether the gene is expressed (turned on) or not.  

Epigenetic changes are caused by mechanisms other than changes in the underlying DNA sequence. (like hormones, stress, diet, exercise, etc).

By adding this testing onto your program, you can see how fast your biological clock is ticking, and do something about it/ You have a choice in how long, and how well you live; and measure it.

The Team at Live Younger

Traditional Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture is well over 5000 years old. This is an integral component of our programs at Live Younger. It is a non-drug approach to assist in our goal to be pain free, optimal in function and achieve healthy longevity. It is very difficult to explain to people who believe in the traditional medical model. It looks at the body as an interconnected system. It looks at the balance of energy and the flow of energy. 

Clinical studies show that acupuncture helps allergy symptoms, PMS and improves pregnancy outcomes in pregnancy. How can we explain these results using a traditional medical model? We cannot. Acupuncture is recommended especially to our patients who have pain, anxiety and sleep impairments

Food and nutrition science has evolved at lightning speed over the last 5 years. Almost everything most people know about diet is outdated. The worst part is the indoctrination of poor advice that is still being handed out, even by doctors and dieticians.

Eat your fruit and vegetables. Avoid saturated fat. Use margarine. Limit eggs. Red meat is bad.

Vegetarianism is better. We know from science, evolution and measuring your hormone levels what helps you live longer and healthier, and achieve your ideal weight and maintain it.

Everyone needs coaching in the new rules of healthy eating.

We live in a sedentary world. Working at a desk leads to changes in posture that do not support independent living when you’re 80 if you continue to shorten certain ligaments and muscles from sitting too long and working at a desk and computer.

Injuries, motor vehicle accidents, headaches, arthritis and TMJ are also common problems our patients have that require attention to enhance the quality of their lives and how well they will live as they age. Chiropractic, when focused more on in depth treatments using multiple modalities (and not just quick adjustments) help patients remain active, agile and pain free.

Eliminating pain helps achieve hormonal balance more efficiently and is an important part of your program.

Massage therapy yields more than relaxation and pain relief. It helps flexibility, treats whiplash and chronic pain. Our therapists are skilled in Tuina massage, cross fibre release and acupressure, bringing in a vast enhancement of results and can treat conditions like sleep disturbance and digestive symptoms based on their integration of Chinese medicine principles and understanding of meridians and acupressure points.

Certain measurements predict your longevity and healthy aging. A ‘sit to stand’ test; grip strength, waist to hip ratio, body fat percentage and other assessments give us more information than just blood tests alone. Combined with a head to toe check, you receive an in depth assessment of your health.

We want you to benefit from Functional Medicine because it transforms lives. Take the first step and book a call with our client services specialist.
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All those years of writing prescriptions, I realized my patients weren’t really getting BETTER. A drug for this and a drug for that…the same dose for everyone, even though every person is a unique individual. Then I discovered a Better way!