Is this a new idea or can we go back in time to Willoughby Wade, a British physician, who coined the term “Functional Medicine”. In an article published in The Lancet on July 1, 1871, he says, “What is disease? The conclusion is that all disease is disordered function. Here, then, I say, is the highest justification for all treatment being based upon the principle of restoring functions to order, and this is what I have ventured to term Functional Medicine.”
What is disease? Literally, it is dis…ease – something is not working right in the body, functioning as it should. So, in functional medicine, our approach is to find the root cause of the dysfunction and return the body to a state of ease. Our body is extremely complex and all the different biological system work together to function as a whole.
Functional Medicine’s approach is in understanding the biological systems and how they work together to create order and wholeness in the person.
These are the systems that together form what we call the Functional Medicine Matrix:
- Assimilation: digestion, absorption, microbiome (gut bacteria)
- Defense and Repair: immune, inflammation, infection
- Energy: regulation of energy, mitochondrial function
- Biotransformation and Elimination: toxicity, detoxification
- Transport: cardiovascular, lymphatic
- Communication: endocrine hormonal system, neurotransmitters, immune messengers
- Structure integrity: from cell membrane to musculoskeletal structure
Functional medicine makes sense of our intricate and interconnected systems of healthy function. Our approach is about finding ways to restore your body to health by supporting these biological systems to function as they are intended.