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What Is Functional Medicine?

At DrHagmeyer.com, we are proud to offer a different form of healthcare –Functional Medicine. Functional Medicine is uniquely positioned to not only address and reverse chronic conditions but improve and provide long-term solutions to better health and well-being.

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What is Functional Medicine?

Functional Medicine In General

The functional medicine model of care offers a patient-centered approach to chronic disease management. It seeks to answer the question, “Why are you ill?” so you can receive personalized, effective care for your needs. Functional medicine providers spend time listening to you and gathering your medical history. We use this information to identify the root cause(s) of the illness, including triggers such as poor nutrition, stress, toxins, allergens, genetics and your microbiome (the bacteria living in and on your body). Once we identify the triggers, we can customize a healthy living plan for you. Your plan will address many aspects of your life, from physical needs, including nutrition, exercise and sleep, to mental and emotional stressors related to social, work and community life.

Before your first visit, you complete an extensive health and medical history questionnaire. The information you provide lays the groundwork for our investigation into the root cause(s) of your current chronic condition. The extensive health and medical history questionnaire will ask you about your:

  • Lifestyle: Your diet, activity level, work life, hobbies and stressors.
  • Genetics: Your family history of physical and mental conditions,
  • Environment: Your exposure to toxins and allergens.

Dr Hagmeyer on Youtube

Dr Hagmeyer Explains Functional Medicine

If You Watch my video titled, “Dr Hagmeyer Explains Functional Medicine,” I’m pretty sure you will have a much better understanding of what we do in our practice and how we might be the light at the end of the tunnel for you. Learn more about Functional Medicine and My approach by watching this video.

Improving your health could be as simple as discovering what puzzle pieces are missing. In a perfect world, you’d already be working with a knowledgeable and capable practitioner who would be creating the energy and health you desire.

But I’m going to assume that if you are reading this, this is not happening for you. That’s unacceptable! And I want you to realize that you don’t need to keep suffering.

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Big Picture from Dr Hagmeyer

Have You Jumped From One Natural
Functional Medicine Doctor To The Next?
Perhaps They Didn’t Look at Your "Big Picture"

Dr Hagmeyer Explains Functional Medicine and The BIG Picture Approach

 “When Experience Makes All The Difference”- What We Believe….

People from all over the world seek the help, guidance, and expertise of DrHagmeyer.com for their chronic health problems. Why? It has to do with the way we approach chronic nagging ongoing health problems. Using Holistic, and Functional medicine as well as my “BIG PICTURE” approach is what sets our clinic aside from other Integrative, Holistic and Functional Medicine practices.

Today, many Functional Medicine Practitioners, Naturopathic doctors and Natural Medicine doctors have become “Niche” doctors. They focus in on “one condition” or one element of a person’s health rather than looking at the Whole picture- The Big Picture.

So, you have your doctors who treat Thyroid problems, Mold toxicity, (CIRS) Histamine intolerance, Hormone imbalances, Gut problems, SIBO but the problems with this is that all of these conditions are interwoven. You can’t fix a mold problem without looking at the gut, you can fix a histamine problem without looking at hormone imbalances and you can’t fix Thyroid problems without looking at the gut, hormones, and the immune system.

With chronic health problems you must think outside the box, you must look at the BIG picture– you have to focus in on the Whole Person! Not just the gut or the thyroid or the adrenals or the infection or the histamine intolerance- You have to look at everything and understand that chronic health problems have many layers, and these layers need to be addressed in the right sequence at the right time. It’s not enough to prescribe a gut protocol or the thyroid protocol or an adrenal protocol or a Lyme protocol.  You have to look at everything and understand how the Whole Person is connected. This is what our team at DrHagmeyer.com call the “BIG picture.”

At DrHagmeyer.com after over 20 years of experience, we firmly believe that “You Can’t Fix What You Don’t Know.” If you are never properly tested, then you are only treating symptoms naturally. Treating symptoms naturally, still does not correct the cause.

At Dr Hagmeyer.com, we believe that proper treatment starts with proper testing.

True Functional Medicine focuses on the many pillars of a person’s health.

Dr. Hagmeyer’s  Pillars of Health- Understanding Your Big Picture 

When the pillars of health are well balanced, the body has an amazing ability to heal itself. With over 24 years of clinical practice in Holistic/Natural and Functional Medicine, I have identified the following pillars that are used to leverage the body’s ability to self-repair.

I Call this the BIG picture. To Take Back Your Health from A Chronic Health Condition, we must look at this Big Picture.

My 9 pillars of The Big Picture

These nine pillars will vary from person to person. Not every person who has a chronic health problem is dealing with a problem in each of these pillars. But the first step to addressing and supporting patients who struggle with chronic health problem starts in personalizing the testing they need.

  1. Individual Nutritional Deficiencies
  2. Inflammation
  3. Food Sensitivities/Food Allergies
  4. Adrenal Glands
  5. Thyroid Hormones
  6. Sex Hormones
  7. Gut Health/Microbiome
  8. Chronic or Hidden Infections (Pathogenic Load)
  9. Toxins

 

#1 Individual Nutritional Deficiencies

As a Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner, I assess my patient’s unique nutritional needs.  Good nutrition is the key to good health but good nutrition varies from one person to the next. Optimizing your biochemistry is a critical pillar. Patients with chronic health problems present with unique nutritional deficiencies. What does your unique, deficiency state look like? What does your body need in order to thrive? Are you deficient in certain vitamins, minerals, amino acids, essential fatty acids, certain antioxidants? I will evaluate a patient for clinical imbalances with blood work and functional testing then combine the nutritional intervention with optimization of the modifiable lifestyle factors.

# 2 Inflammation

Chronic inflammation is long lasting, insidious, dangerous. And you may not even know you have it. Chronic Inflammation is another pillar of the Big Picture. But there are different pathways activated during the inflammatory process. The key to addressing Inflammation lies in knowing the root cause. Is your inflammation caused by infection, injury, food, blood sugar imbalance, gut, hormone imbalance, industrial toxins, heavy metals or the immune system? Untreated inflammation has been shown to cause autoimmune disease, heart disease, hormone imbalances, thyroid disease, depression, anxiety, digestive problems, chronic pain, migraines, and many other chronic health problems.

#3 Food Sensitivities/Allergies/Intolerances

We have all heard that food is medicine. For people struggling with chronic health problems, it is not enough to say “eat better” or “eat cleaner”- People who struggle with chronic health problems may also struggling with food allergies, or food sensitivities to even healthy foods.  Chronic health problems are often exacerbated or caused by Food Sensitivities and or food Allergies. The symptoms of both food sensitivities and food allergies often mirror one another. These symptoms include, nausea, diarrhea, Gas, stomach cramps, heartburn, bloating and skin conditions, but also may include other issues, like headaches, heart palpitations, brain fog, irritability, or nervousness. For many of my patients, we often evaluate them for one or the other and sometimes both.

You have probably noticed that there are all kinds of special diets available to individuals with chronic health problems. We have Keto, Paleo, Autoimmune Paleo, Vegetarian, Gluten Free, Mediterranean, GAPS, low FODMAP, elemental, Low histamine, Low Oxalate, Low salicylate, Low Sulfur, and the list goes on.

I believe that there is no one size fits all diet for any chronic health condition. What we should be asking is what is the best diet for the individual needs and system imbalances at this time.

Understanding that “Food is Medicine” is a foundational pillar of our Big Picture approach. Food sensitivity testing or food allergies testing is one way we customize our dietary meal plans for our patients.

#4 Adrenal Glands

Your adrenal glands are your stress handling glands. Everyone experiences stress and sometimes stress can be beneficial to our survival. Unfortunately, in many patients struggling with chronic health problems, the stress response doesn’t stop firing and these stress levels remain elevated until they crash.

Chronic stress takes a toll on our body and create a variety of symptoms which include irritability, anxiety, depression, brain fog, insomnia, chronic pain, blood sugar imbalances, thyroid problems, headaches, chronic fatigue, and often exacerbate an autoimmune disease.

Because our Adrenal Glands are critical to our homeostasis within our body, supporting these glands can have far reaching effects on our health. Fight or Flight or Rest and digest- This is the job of your adrenal glands.

#5 Thyroid Hormones

All the cells in your body are responsive to thyroid hormones levels. This is why a thyroid hormone imbalance, resulting in hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism can create a variety of symptoms.

Fatigue, Depression, Hair loss, infertility, Anxiety, Depression, Weight loss/Weight gain, heart palpitations, Insomnia, Chronic pain are all symptoms all too common in thyroid disease. Chronic health problems are often rooted in either thyroid disease or sub optimal thyroid function.

When patients consult our Functional Medicine Clinic because they struggle with hormone imbalances, we always evaluate the major hormones together.

We do this because your adrenal gland, thyroid gland, pancreas, and ovaries/testes cross talk. If you have a problem in one, you often have problems in the others.

Supporting hormonal imbalances at the root level, requires and understanding of ALL the hormones and how they function or dysfunction together. This is how we truly optimize hormone balance. Thyroid hormones are an essential pillar for good health and is key puzzle piece in my Big Picture.

#6 Sex Hormones

Hormone imbalances are one of the most common problems men and woman consult our practice for. There is not a single aspect of your life that’s not influenced by your sex hormones. Estrogen, Progesterone, Testosterone, DHEA all influence your metabolic health. Your heart, your bones, your brain, your immune system are all influenced in either a positive or negative way thanks to hormonal balance. Optimal hormone balance is essential for good health and is one the reasons it’s a pillar in my BIG picture approach.

#7 Gut Health/Microbiome

Have you heard the saying all disease begins in the gut? How have you been treating your gut for the last 10, 15, 20 or 30 years? Medications, poor dietary choices, environmental chemicals, and genetically modified foods have caused a disruption to the gut microbiome.

This often leads to problems like Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, yeast overgrowth, leaky gut, low Secretory IgA, malabsorption disorders, motility disorders, loss of chemical tolerance leading to sensitivities to foods and hyper sensitivities to chemicals within the environment.

Show me a sick person and I will show you an unhealthy gut. The gut microbiome will be another foundational pillar in your quest for optimal health.

#8 Infections- “Pathogenic Load”

Unlike an acute infection, which typically receives treatment, creates an inconvenience in our lives for one to two weeks, chronic infections for some individuals, can be life altering. With chronic infections the immune system is unable to respond to the infective agent or pathogen.

Some common examples of chronic infections include: Gulf war syndrome, Chronic Fatigue syndrome, Epstein Barr Virus, Fibromyalgia, CMV, Mycoplasma, Hepatitis C, Herpes, H.pylori, E.coli, Pseudomonas, Salmonella

Chronic infections produce vague symptoms, and sometimes in some people no symptoms at all. If you suffer with any of the following problems you may have a chronic infection caused by virus, bacteria, parasite, Mold, Lyme, or co-infection.

Common symptoms of a chronic infection include; Chronic respiratory problems like bronchitis and asthma, A persistent low-grade fever, persistent cough, persistent allergies, Chronic joint and muscle pain, or swelling, Chronic anxiety, depression, or mood swings, Chronic Gut issues like diarrhea and constipation, Recurring gas, bloating, or heartburn, Abnormal genital discharge, Frequent urinary tract infections, Chronic fatigue, autoimmune disease you may be struggling with a chronic infection.

#9 Toxins

We are exposed to more environmental toxins daily than ever before in history. Even the simplest of daily routines can expose one to several common pollutants found in the water we drink, food we eat, and air we breathe.

While our liver, kidneys and lymphatic system play a major role in removing biologically harmful compounds, our bodies have not evolved to deal with the growing number of toxins we unknowingly interact with every day.

When chemicals enter the body, then can bind to human tissue proteins causing a variety of chronic health problems such as diabetes, autoimmune disease, MS, inflammatory disease, hormone imbalances and neurodegenerative diseases.

In addition to binding to human proteins, they easily overwhelm our Detoxification system causing stress to the liver and toxin overload. This happens when your body has taken in more toxins than it can process.

Depending upon the chemical, entry into the body can occur by contact (through the skin), inhalation (through the lungs), and ingestion (through the gastrointestinal tract). Medications, Vaccines, Food, Cleaning products, Personal hygiene products, pesticides are often common culprits.

Have you ever looked at the label on your shampoo bottle, your make-up, your perfumes/cologne, your deodorant, and the lotions you lather on your body every morning after your shower?

Many of these items often contain toxic chemicals. These include Parabens, Phthalates, formaldehyde, BPA, mercury compounds, heavy toxic metals such as lead, arsenic, nickel, cobalt. We offer a variety of tests that can not only assess your risk for exposure, but we can also measure your immune systems response to these chemicals.

Have You Jumped From One Natural Functional Medicine Doctor To The Next? Perhaps they Didn’t look at YOUR The Big Picture

What I have just described is the Big Picture approach for people with chronic health problems, they often suffer with problems to several of these pillars. Determining how to start tackling these pillars and the sequence in which they need to be addressed is something that has taken me over 20 years to develop.

When you view health from this perspective, it’s obvious that chronic health problems are not rooted only in one of these pillars. If you have jumped from one doctor to the next without success, It might be time for you to look at the Big picture.

Often, adjustments to these pillars of health will allow your body to ignite innate healing ability within.  

Health comes from within, remove the interference, provide the body with what it needs and watch how it bounces back!

Contact us today and schedule a consultation. Let’s get you back on track to optimal health.

At DrHagmeyer.com you’ll discover that my “Big Picture” approach is best suited to help you heal the “Root Cause” of your chronic nagging health challenges. Not sure where to Begin?

Still have questions? Check out our FAQ section

Looking for a Natural Holistic approach? Get get Started 

What Kind of Patients Does Dr Hagmeyer Work With? 

Dr. Hagmeyer has been able to help support nutritionally, metabolically, and structurally patients who suffer from conditions such as as Hyperthyroidism, Graves Disease, Autoimmune disorders, Hashimoto’s ThyroiditisType II Diabetes, Peripheral NeuropathyFibromyalgiaChronic Fatigue SyndromeMale Hormone Imbalance, MS, ALS, Female Hormone imbalance, PMS, PCOS, Endometriosis, Andropause, Irritable Bowel SyndromeChronic headaches or MigrainesBalance and Dizziness, using the principles of Functional medicine. 

Learn more about some of the conditions we work with

Not Sure Where To Start? Need Some Direction?

Take a few minutes to fill out my Health Questionnaire.

Once I know your top health concerns, your goals and what kind of help you are looking for, I will send you back some of my initial recommendations.