Functional Medicine

Who’s in Bed with the IOM? Vitamin D Report Prompts Conflict of Interest Suspicion

By Erik Goldman

The Institute of Medicine’s Nov. 30 consensus statement claiming most Americans do not need supplemental vitamin D—a position that runs counter to the views of many clinicians and researchers⎯has some folks wondering if committee members had preexisting biases or vested interests against supplementation.


It turns out that at least two members of the committee hold patents on synthetic vitamin D analogs in development or already on the market as prescription drugs, and significant relationships with companies involved in vitamin D drug development.

 

Telomeres, Aging, & Disease Prevention: Do Telomere-Targeted Treatments Have a Role in Clinical Practice?

By Stephen Holt, MD, PhD | Contributing Writer - Vol. 11, No. 3. Fall, 2010
Telomeres—segments of chromosomes that prevent aberration or loss of genetic information during cell division—are among the hottest research topics these days, and they’ve become the focus of “anti-aging” and chronic disease prevention strategies. Like many areas of genetic research, the work on telomeres raises as many questions as it answers. Anti-aging specialist Dr. Stephen Holt explores the many nuances of telomere and telomerase research, offering his own clinically tested recommendations.

Restoring Digestive Health is Key to Optimizing Weight Loss

By August West | Contributing Writer - Vol. 10, No. 4. Winter, 2009

The problem with most medical weight loss programs is that they focus too much on weight loss and not nearly enough on overall health. Somae Health is a new 12-week, medically guided weight management program that begins with restoration of healthy gastrointestinal function.

Popularity of Bioidentical Hormones Puts Spotlight on Compounding Pharmacies

By Erik L. Goldman | Editor-in-Chief - Vol. 10, No. 4. Winter, 2009

The rising popularity of bioidentical hormones, HCG-based weight loss protocols, and chelation has fostered a resurgence of compounding pharmacies in recent years. Regulation and quality control in the compounding industry are tighter than many doctors realize.

H1N1 is No Match for a Well-Primed Immune System

By Roby Mitchell, MD | Contributing Writer - Vol. 10, No. 4. Winter, 2009

Maintaining the functional integrity of the innate immune complex through a vegetable-rich diet, and immune enhancing vitamins & minerals obviates the need to fret over which strain of flu virus will predominate. A competent immune system will defend against them all.

Electrodermal Testing: What It Can and Cannot Tell

By Cathy Creger Rosenbaum, PharmD | Contributing Writer - Vol. 9, No. 1. Spring, 2008

Based on the idea that organ system functions are reflected in galvanic currents on the skin surface, electrodermal testing has become a very popular "alternative" diagnostic technique. Available data suggest that there are electrical currents on the skin, and one study shows that ET can, indeed, detect internal problems. But data are scant, and there's no evidence this controversial technique can identify specific causes of internal problems, as ET practitioners often claim it can.

Hair Analysis, Antioxidant Testing: Popular with Patients, But Are They Clinically Valid?

By Cathy Creger Rosenbaum, PharmD | Contributing Writer - Vol. 8, No. 4. Winter, 2007

In their effort to get a grip on their health, many people are utilizing "alternative" diagnostic tests that claim to identify nutrient deficiencies, environmental toxins, and disease risk factors. Some of these tests are backed good science, others are not, but even the legitimate ones may not be able to provide the type of guidance that patients are seeking. In Part One of this series, Cathy Creger Rosenbaum looks at hair analysis and antioxidant testing.

Is Acupuncture Useful in Treating Hypertension?

By John C. Longhurst, MD, PhD | Contributing Writer - Vol. 8, No. 4. Winter, 2007

By reducing sympathetic nervous system activity, acupuncture can be a valuable tool in treating mild-to-moderate hypertension. In some cases, it can obviate the need for antihypertensive drugs which often have a lot of side effects. Researchers at the Susan Samueli Center for Integrative Medicine at the University of California, Irvine, are learning how acupuncture works at the neuronal level.

Inflammation, Autoimmune Reactions Underlie Many Common Thyroid Problems

By Janet Gulland | Staff Writer - Vol. 7, No. 3. Fall, 2006

Effective management of thyroid problems requires an approach that goes beyond simply manipulating thyroid hormones. Many thyroid problems are related to underlying inflammatory processes, environmental toxin exposure and dietary factors. A guide to assessing and treating thyroid disorders from a holistic viewpoint.

Functional Medicine: Nutrition's Info Revolution

By Erik L. Goldman | Editor in Chief - Vol. 3, No. 1. April, 2002

The core tenet of the emerging discipline of functional medicine is that nutrition is the major determinant of gene expression, and therefore of health and disease. Functional medicine pioneer Jeff Bland, PhD, explains how, in a sense, food is information that tells the genes what to do. Depending on the signals we send our genes, they can produce health and happiness or depression and disease.