Integrative medicine is the combination of conventional treatment and functional medicine, including herbal medicine, nutrition, acupuncture, massage, yoga, and stress reduction. It is a model of holistic medicine that recognises the significance of the whole person to health and wellness. In order to treat a disease, functional medicine considers the underlying cause of its development.
Although alternative medicine has existed for some time, some individuals question the efficacy of alternative treatments. Integrative medicine attempts to combine the most scientifically validated alternative therapies with mainstream treatment.
Functional medicine is a holistic approach to health that focuses on identifying and treating the underlying causes of disease. For example, a functional medicine practitioner would include environmental toxin inputs, holistic weight loss, nutrition and microbial imbalances, the functioning of the detoxification system, the neurological and endocrine systems, intestinal system function, and the effect of stress. They would investigate the genetic and metabolic systems implicated in a particular disease, as well as the variation between individuals in these systems.