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Nutritional Therapy (NT) comprises individualised dietary, Food Supplement and lifestyle advice within a Functional Medicine framework to promote optimal physical and mental well-being.
NT is classified as 'Complementary and Alternative Medicine' as it represents a nutritional paradigm with fundamental differences from that which underpins current dietetic and public health nutrition practice.
Functional Medicine is science-based and grounded in the following principles:
• Biochemical individuality: understanding and appreciating the importance of variations in metabolic function deriving from genetic, epigenetic and environmental differences among individuals.
• Patient-centred: emphasising "patient care" rather than "disease care," following Sir William Osler's admonition that "It is more important to know what patient has the disease than to know what disease the patient has."
• Dynamic balance of internal and external factors.
• Web-like interconnections – human physiology functions as an orchestrated network of interconnected systems, rather than individual systems functioning autonomously and without effect on each other. Examples include: immunological dysfunctions promoting cardiovascular disease; dietary imbalances causing hormonal disturbances; and environmental exposures precipitating neurologic syndromes such as Parkinson's disease.
• Health as a positive vitality – not merely the absence of disease.
• Promotion of organ reserve as the means to enhance health span by maintaining genomic stability and mitochondrial capacity so decreasing morbidity.
Functional Medicine is dedicated to improving the management of complex, chronic disease by intervening at multiple levels to address a number of core clinical imbalances and to restore each patient's functionality and health. It is not a unique and separate body of knowledge: it is grounded in scientific principles and information widely available in modern medicine, combining research from various disciplines into highly detailed yet clinically relevant models of disease pathogenesis and effective clinical management.
For more see www.functionalmedicine.org