Dr. Fabrizio Mancini Practices Functional Medicine
Health and lifestyle expert, author and Doctor of Chiropractic Fabrizio Mancini explains that in our American health care system, the conventional approach is to wait until a patient has symptoms before seeing a healthcare provider, which then makes recommendations for a solution, often based on pharmaceutical solutions or surgery.
A less conventional path involves holistic providers such as chiropractors, homeopathists, acupuncturists or naturopathic doctors that have been trained in alternative solutions. “The main distinction is that they determine the root cause of the problem rather than the management of the symptoms,” Mancini says.
A functional medicine approach marries both schools of thought. Mancini notes that over the last 25 years, more medical doctors recognize the effectiveness of talking with patients to find out when a condition started, and whether there are any stress or life events that may have triggered a condition. Clinical nutrition often comes into play. “When the body has inflammation, functional medicine uses solutions like omega-3 fish oil, which decreases inflammation,” Mancini says. Functional approaches often involve non-pharmaceutical solutions such as dietary recommendations to help improve symptoms.
The technology for laboratory testing has improved greatly and now goes beyond typical blood and urine tests to evaluate body chemistry. Functional medicine practitioners will often order in-depth testing panels to determine if a patient has allergies, food intolerances or a genetic predisposition to a condition. Mancini says, “Combining nutritionally based solutions with this technology has changed the way patients are being evaluated.”
He notes that while there isn’t a specific degree for a practitioner to become a functional medicine doctor, medical doctors, psychiatrists, chiropractors and others can get training or certification in functional medicine so they can offer more options to their patients.
With the widespread availability of vitamins and supplements, combined with a worldwide web of information—and misinformation—at our fingertips, Mancini advises against using “Dr. Google” to self-diagnose. “Search engines are good in that they educate people and give real-time information; it becomes a negative when people rely on making a self-diagnosis without proper training to differentiate an ailment from other issues," he explains.
Functional medicine practitioners are trained in differential diagnosis, meaning that they can look at a set of symptoms and understand how to discriminate one condition from another. Mancini advises, “When a person goes to a search engine, they don’t have that training. They make decisions based on what they know, but the treatment may or may not be best for their condition. That’s where people might limit their potential for healing and maybe buy supplements or things they don’t need.”
Mancini asks people to take inventory of what’s already been done to solve a health problem, “And then ask yourself, ‘Has it worked?’ If the answer is no, then functional medicine is a great option, because now you’ll have a provider that will go deeper to find the root cause and evaluate you differently. That gives people solutions when they were not getting solutions before. That’s why functional medicine has grown so much over last 20 years.”
Mancini will speak at the Changing Life & Destiny Conference, held from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., April 3, at the Hilton Hotel at Granite Park, in Plano. He will cover health hacks that address six commonly reported conditions people are suffering from as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mancini will use his functional medicine background as a foundation to educate people at the conference. “This advice is for everybody—providers that want to integrate these solutions into their practice, CEOs that wants to integrate those solutions into their employee wellness and consumers looking for solutions that are effective," he says. "This conference will bring the latest technologies all in one place and let people experience many of these treatments right on the spot. It’s an opportunity like no other.”