These numbers are crazy! According to a 2020 survey of 2,000 people, the average number of diets tried by the participants was … get ready to spit whatever you’re drinking out: 126!
And not only that, that same year, statistics from the Centers for Disease Control, as reported by NBC, say that 17% of Americans were on a diet at least once during 2017-2018. That’s an increase of over 20% from the previous decade. Over that same time, the rate of obesity rose in the U.S. to 42 percent of Americans, from 34 percent. Clearly, dieting does not work?
I can relate to these stats. I used to be a yo-yo dieter. Try the cabbage soup diet, lose 10 pounds, then realize I hate cabbage soup. Gain the 10 pounds back and then some. Diets fail because they’re either just crazy or they are too restrictive.
The Functional Medicine Approach
If you’re new to functional medicine, here’s how it’s different from conventional medicine. With conventional medicine, there is no exploring underlying root causes. Conventional medicine treats symptoms and oftentimes the approach is uniform rather than individualized. For example, if a doctor sees 10 patients with high blood pressure, the doctor may prescribe the same exact prescription for each of the 10 patients.
With functional medicine, the root causes of imbalance are discovered. Every patient is treated on an individualized basis. Cutting-edge science-based testing helps practitioners like myself act like a Sherlock Holmes. Using the data from the diagnostic tests, we can put together a picture of what needs to be rebalanced in the body.
In discovering the underlying root causes of imbalance, functional medicine can help improve digestion, elimination, metabolism, insulin sensitivity and so much more. The end result is not just a tighter fitting wardrobe but an all-around happier, healthier you!
Tools of Functional Medicine For Weight Loss & More
So what’s in my bag of tricks that will help you reclaim your health? For starters, there’s:
- DNA Testing – no, I’m not talking about Ancestry.com. If you’re 0.1% Pacific Islander, that’s cool. But the DNA testing I’m talking about has to do with your genetic blueprint. This blueprint will help unlock the precise foods which are best suited for your DNA. No more guessing games about what to eat or which diet to try!
In addition, here’s another tool I use in my practice:
- Nutritional Deficiency Analysis – Hey, nobody’s perfect. We all have deficiencies when it comes to nutrients. Many people that I work with have, for example, a deficiency of omega-3 fatty acids, which can negatively impact your fat-burning potential as well as your happiness level. (Omega-3s travel to the brain and interact with molecules that influence your mood). Using either blood or urine samples (or both), I’ll be able to tell you which nutrients you need to get more of—and how to get them.
- Boosting Gut Health – You have a tiny universe of bacteria that has more cells and DNA than you yourself have. In fact, you could say we’re more microorganism than human. If you take care of the good bacteria in your gut, your friendly bacteria will take care of you. They will help you digest your food and create short-chain fatty acids. You can think of short-chain fatty acids as leftovers that gut bacteria eat. These metabolic fermented leftovers not only control your weight but also your mood and so much more! As a functional medicine practitioner, I’ll guide you to achieving great gut health!
- Vitamins & Supplements – Even if you have a doctorate in nutrition, it can be downright confusing to know which vitamins and supplements you need to take. This kind of goes hand in hand with the nutritional deficiency analysis I talk about above. The point is lots of people take supplements without knowing if they are high quality or even if they need to take them in the first place. This is where I also come in to help you reboot your metabolism and overall health.
- Master Certified Health Coach – There’s more to improving your health than playing mad scientist and analyzing lab data. As a master certified health coach, I will spend lots of time with you, listening to what your past pain points have been. Chances are, I’ve been there, done that, too! By understanding your past behaviors and health challenges, I will guide you on a weightloss journey that’s unlike no other — one that actually works.
Keep in mind that functional medicine does not necessarily think all pharmaceutical medication is bad. In some instances, I may suggest a combination approach.
GREAT NEWS! I have partnered with a Diabetes & Wellness Clinic, which is able to bill insurance for some services. Schedule an appointment here.
Until next time,
Jenna Witt, NP