Honoring the uniqueness and individuality of each patient
Functional medicine is a holistic medical approach focusing on addressing the underlying causes of complex, chronic disease and how a person’s genes, environment, and lifestyle interact to determine health or “dis-ease.” Functional medicine honors the uniqueness and individuality of each patient, focusing on the needs of the whole person for complete health.
What is Functional Medicine?
The discoveries of modern medicine have included significant breakthroughs in the realm of acute medical and surgical treatment for a variety of problems that have been both lifesaving and life-prolonging.
The greatest problems we currently face in medicine, however, are the complex, chronic diseases that do not have simple, one-pill solutions or one cause answers.
These are problems such as metabolic diseases like diabetes or heart disease, autoimmune diseases like lupus or multiple sclerosis, chronic energy and pain problems like fibromyalgia, degenerative neurologic conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, and psychological issues such as anxiety and depression. In these cases, the “pill for every ill” pharmaceutical dominant approach may treat a presenting symptom or complaint, but usually does not adequately approach the root cause of the issue leading to the dysfunction contributing to the symptom.
So, what happens?
The medical intervention may work at suppressing symptoms but at the cost of side effects. Or maybe it works but only for a limited amount of time. The underlying problem continues to fester and then another system starts showing dysfunction and new symptoms start occurring, so you get started on another medication. This cycle unfortunately can continue for decades and is why 42% of older Americans take five or more prescription drugs (which has tripled in the past 20 years) and nearly 20% take 10 or more medications according to a 2020 report.
Beyond the dangers of medication interactions and increased side effects, many people continue to report low levels of function and quality of life despite these interventions.
So, what other choice do we have?
Is it possible, that we have become so good at diagnosing and treating disease that we have lost focus on the other side of the equation? Do diseases even exist without the human body? Have we become so disease-centric that the human person sitting before us is lost amongst the labels and treatments?
Are we even able to fully treat a person when we do not understand how their physical, emotional, and spiritual experiences synergize to create their expression of health or disease? As much as we are faced with new questions in modern medicine, these are not new concepts.
The great classic physician, William Osler MD said long ago, “It is much more important to know what sort of a patient has a disease than what sort of a disease a patient has.”
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So, what comes next?
We are in a time of a medical renaissance. This movement is being led by patients who have tried the disease-only approach and want a new way.
The voices of people who want to understand their bodies to prevent disease and promote vitality and optimize their health potential are carving this new path.
Those who amid pain and suffering from complex symptoms and diseases are asking new questions such as “what can I eat, how can I move, what can I do to promote healing in my body?”
We are being led by thought leaders in medicine who have practiced within the confines of the traditional model and have observed their patients’ decline rather than vitality and who have been troubled by this.
These observations have led them to ask themselves, “is there more to doctoring and healing than what I am currently doing for this person?”
This new path is also being forged by the groundbreaking researchers who can look at cellular processes and gigantic clouds of data like never before to map genetics, the microbiome, and cellular processes in ways that were never before possible to paint complex systems understandings of this living matrix that is the human body.
At the same time, we are being reunited with the traditional wisdom of classic healing techniques from ancient practices that centered on creating an environment for the body to promote function and healing.
Functional medicine is a child of this renaissance as a synergy of classic healing concepts and techniques fused with systems-biology approaches focusing on how our genes, environment, and lifestyle interact to determine health or disease.
Functional medicine is a patient-centered approach that puts your unique biochemical makeup, medical history, and personal health goals at the central focus.
We work to find the root cause of illness and support the body’s innate healing processes using an approach that is an effective blend of classic medical practice with nutritional, psychological, and spiritual perspectives.
We empower patients with the knowledge to gain greater insight into everyday choices that help unlock their greatest health expression.
Autoimmune diseases such as systemic lupus, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease
Frequently Asked Questions
Working together, we will craft a comprehensive plan focusing on removing the obstacles to health and giving back the ingredients for optimal function.
The body has an innate healing potential and knows what to do when given the right ingredients and environment. “Dis-ease” goes away as a side effect of creating health.
We will guide you through individually tailored comprehensive dietary and lifestyle prescriptions for both the prevention and treatment of chronic diseases, performance optimization, and improvement in overall vitality.
We will be partners on your journey forward towards the joy of full health expression.
As a science-based approach to holistic patient-centered medical care, functional medicine is effective for a variety of conditions and symptoms including:
- Metabolic problems – including prediabetes/ type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, metabolic syndrome, high cholesterol, weight gain/weight loss resistance, fatty liver
- Digestive issues – such as irritable bowel syndrome, acid reflux/GERD, food allergies and sensitivities, abdominal pain and bloating, small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO), Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis
- Chronic pain and energy conditions – arthritis, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, headaches, migraines, neuropathy, insomnia
- Autoimmune conditions – systemic lupus, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, Grave’s disease, multiple sclerosis, psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosis spondylitis, celiac disease
- Chronic inflammatory issues – asthma, eczema, obesity, chronic musculoskeletal pain problems
- Women’s health issues – hormone imbalances, irregular menstrual cycles, PMS, PCOS, fertility and preconception, dietary optimization during pregnancy, menopause, osteoporosis, endometriosis
- Mental health concerns –depression and anxiety, insomnia, performance optimization, concentration and focus, coping with stress and busy life
- Brain development and healthy brain aging –supporting a healthy nervous system from birth and childhood development, dementia, Parkinson’s, neuropathy
Your first visit with Dr. Gesik allows us to gather more information in mapping out “your story” that led to your symptoms or current illness. We will create a timeline to better understand early life events or family history, triggering or contributing events, and daily choices that may be leading to your current issues.
In better understanding what led you to your current state of function, it will help us create a comprehensive care plan including potential lab testing and lifestyle or dietary interventions.
Specialized laboratory testing is also available for further analysis when clinically appropriate.
Dr. Gesik acknowledges the uniqueness of each one of her patients and the life they live.
Her goal is to best equip patients with the skills to make daily choices that help them create a new health future for themselves.
Some patients may find that as they improve the quality of their food and other lifestyle changes that they no longer need common medications like those for elevated blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, or high cholesterol.
Your primary care doctor or specialist managing these conditions will regularly monitor your need for medications and may adjust dosing or reduce medications as clinically indicated.
Other patients may still require medications necessary for management of chronic disease states, though may have better responses to their treatment plans or have a positive therapeutic response at lower dosages as they improve other aspects of their eating, sleep, movement, and relaxation practices.
As we work to remove the hindrances to your health, your body will show us what is possible and guide the path towards your personalized decision making.