1. Functional medicine is new to me, but it sounds like a method that might have a potential computer application. If you can get someone to answer 600 questions, it seems like you would get plenty of info for a useful database to speed up the analysis. You started out mentioning the nutritional components for health, which I rely upon, and I also believe that exercise tells the body to build health. Chronic disease has been a part of my entire life, but it changes over time. I now see the difference that nutrition and exercise play and have worked out my own 'functional' plan to minimize the negative effects, without prescriptions.

    FYI, the volume has been very low lately, unlike other sites I follow. And thanks for all the great coaching that YOU give us!

  2. I could write a book on my thoughts on modern health care system! Lol! I was an RN for 40 years and worked in acute care facilities in England and Canada. Basically I think our health care system is unsustainable. Certainly here in Canada and lots of other countries too. There is a huge amount of waste. Lots of expensive, unnecessary tests being ordered. When I started nursing in the 70s, doctors used to diagnose patients when they examined them. These skills have sadly been lost over the years.
    Regarding Functional Medicine. It's new to me. But I can certainly see the value in it. Nutrition is so important and a healthy lifestyle cannot be underestimated. Generally, people these days have a very unhealthy lifestyle. And are certainly on way too many medications. I have seen what drugs do to people and it's rarely good.
    I am a strong believer in the term; Overdiagnosis. This is leading to people getting treatment, often harmful, that they don't need.
    Sorry to go on! But so much of what I have witnessed makes me mad!
    Just wanted to add to what some of my fellow Canadians have said that we are so short of GPS it's a joke. My doctor retired last year and I still haven't found a replacement! I particularly want a female doctor. Good thing I'm healthy!!

  3. I live in Canada and although our system has challenges because of growing populations in certain areas, I feel that I and my family get good care. I have been through cancer treatment and my partner had an aneurysm and we both received excellent care with amazing medical specialists and extended care by complementary professionals and programs. I understand that not everyone has the best outcome in any healthcare system, but I appreciate our quality of care. To ease the waiting and backlog in my Doctor’s office, I am participating in a telecommunication pilot in which I can receive care and order tests for my doctor to diagnose and determine if a physical examination is required. We also have a system called “TeleHealth” that basically saved my partner’s life. They were able to provide an assessment over the phone (not a diagnosis) that triggered a recommendation to get him to emergency. His information was sent directly to the hospital and there was no waiting when we arrived.

  4. Great topic.  I live in the U.S. and have never been to a functional doctor.  My doctors never try to figure out why I have a certain condition and just push a medication with severe side effects and say that the benefits outweigh the risks.  If I try to explain why I have a certain pain, they act like I am crazy.  If I tell them that a medicine is causing me a side effect, they do not believe me.  They are so attached to their drugs.  I am very dissatisfied.  They never try to get to know me, what I do, and what is important to me and my life.

  5. Hi Margaret, It took me a long time to find a Functional Doctor but I finally got in to an appointment. I knew she was going to be expensive at over $200 a visit but was not financially prepared for all of the blood tests that need to be done at our own cost. The prices varied from $80 to $700 !! So it appears that only the rich can look after their health. So frustrating !

  6. My best friend has accompanied a friend ( not me) to the Cleveland Clinic and says it is the best medical facility she’s ever seen. I follow them on Facebook because they have interesting health tips and info.

  7. Great topic Margaret. I'm off of regular doctors. They have become pharmaceutical drug pushers, not much better than dealers standing on a street corner in the hood. I was on 10 prescription pills a day and spent the last two years going off of them, and I didn't really need to be on any of them. Thanks again for a great conversation.

  8. I went back to school at 60..To The Institute for Integrative Nutrition..it is a year school and you can take it online..HE was one of our lecturer's…changed my life..I am 67..I do my research..my health is incredible…and I am 7 years sober and my body is healed….garbage in..will cause disease…the food you eat..exercise,meditation..sleep..etc..less then 20% of all illness is genetics the rest is "epigenetics"..LIFESTYLE…WE need to be our OWN researchers…all MD's only get one course in nutrition..and it IS NOT updated at all…the medical field is a business…medication is a HUGE money maker..careful ladies..

  9. My foot and ankle kept giving out. The Dr's misdiagnosed me as gout or arthritis ect. After 2 years I went to the ER and asked for a referral to see a foot Dr after 2 x rays and a ultrasound they finaly sent me to a physical therapist. P T saved my life. They found that my butt muscles were not firing so the load was transferred down to my foot. The foot couldn't take the load. So my foot muscles blew out. The physical therapy people took a long and detailed intake as to any past injuries. It was 45 minutes of questioning. The Dr never did that. They showed me that when I squatted down how my right knee would fold over to my left knee. The muscle gave out and at that point was over taxing my left leg and foot. I was on my way to a wheel chair. They saved me. I was the one who pushed for help. You really have to stand up for referrals to specialized care. What a night mare!

  10. Big pharma. That’s what medicine is all about in the US. Disease care. If you don’t have insurance you have no way to receive care. Scary.

  11. I was told at 34 yrs. of age I had MS my family doctor and neurologist knew but didn't tell me. Back then there wasn't much treatments as today. I can honestly say those two years were the best! As the symptoms increased, I just kept pushing myself! But then it all came falling down. I lived in a fog for almost 5 years as the disease progressed. I fought my way out of a wheelchair in less than a year. Today it has seemed to stabilize I live with the effects but so thankful I am still walking at 59 yrs of age! Life is truly precious!

  12. Margaret,
    Also, The Cleveland Clinic is in
    Cleveland, Ohio.
    They provide extensive diagnostics and treatments for difficult to diagnose conditions.

  13. Margaret,
    I have not read the article yet but listening to your description of functional medicine, it sounds the same as holistic medicine which has been around for decades….
    alot of times the word and concept of "alternative medicine" is used…..which is self explanatory. Both these concepts in care is
    where the doctor will look at the "whole body", the "whole person" and listen to the circumstances of your illness….and think of different, alternative treatments for your problem, ie. acupuncture.
    Hopefully, someone will look into this before their illness/medical problem gets to the point where it becomes a chronic problem.
    If for example, you have pain after an accident and it is not fully taken care of by physical therapy, medication or whatever is prescribed and 6 months goes by,
    it is then considered "chronic".
    Neurological pain pathways develop at about that 6 mo. time period and then you have developed a chronic health problem, in this example, "chronic pain". As you can imagine, when something becomes chronic, it
    becomes more difficult to treat, and chances of solving the problem goes down. People need to be more aggressive when it comes to getting the help they need from the very onset. Easier said than done. Of course if the quality of your health insurance is
    good and you are financially also in a good place, this at least gives you the ability to seek out the care you really need. It really is a shame that most health care providers either don't have the necessary knowledge or the necessary time to provide patients with what they really deserve and require. When people are sick and hurting, it is hard for them to put that extra effort into investigating
    and learning about the different
    options for treatment that are
    available to help with their problem. This is where your primary doctor plays an even more
    important and essential role in your care.

  14. Any way you cut it… isn’t it a tragedy that getting to the root cause of the problem is not the norm in caring for our bodies health conditions? Thank you for another timely and much needed look at our health care options. Sadly, for so many, the option for Functional Medicine is almost nonexistent… either in availability of physicians, financial feasibility, or both.

  15. I live in Canada and have had a chronic illness for nearly 50 years. Healthcare here is funded by the government as it is in the UK. In Canada there is a shortage of family doctors and many people just go to a walk-in clinic for treatment. We also wait a long time for specialist appointments. As I’ve had medical issues for so long, I don’t wait for appts, they are scheduled regularly and I am well looked after by the system. I have never felt I have only one or two minutes with any dr I can remember seeing, and there have been many. I have also been given options before being prescribed pills. Maybe the UK has even fewer drs than Canada or maybe I’ve just been lucky. Functional medicine is new over here but it sounds really interesting. Thanks for your info as always.

  16. I have never heard of a functional Medicine but after looking it up a Naturalpath seems to be the same kind of practice, if it is I have many times in the past seen a Naturalpath, he was awesome but at the tme, I couldn't afford everything he suggested I do ..I had some great results …but in the end surgery was needed ..great topic certainly something to think about if something is Chronic.

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