Find out more about topics related to IFM's 5-day foundational course, Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice:
Henri Roca, MD, on Mentoring AFMCP Attendees
We learn better together. That is the message Henri Roca, MD, describes in this video when discussing mentoring at AFMCP. Within a mentorship relationship, clinicians become committed students of Functional Medicine and therefore better practitioners to their patients.
What Can Clinicians Expect to Change After Attending AFMCP?Robert Rountree, MD
, describes his perspective on the top takeaways for clinicians who attend Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice
(AFMCP). From techniques to increase patient compliance to tools for assessing and treating patients, clinicians walk away from IFM’s foundational course ready to make changes in practice.
Preventing Chronic Disease Before It Happens
Imagine a patient, Michael, walking into your office with a chief complaint of fatigue and an upset stomach. You note that his waist circumference is high, like his blood pressure and blood sugar, he rarely exercises, drinks often, and eats most meals in restaurants. He wants to get better but struggles to keep his job and stay engaged with his children, so the hard work of lifestyle change seems overwhelming.
How do we help patients like Michael who have the stage set for a future of chronic illness?
+ Read More
The Institute for Functional Medicine’s foundational Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice (AFMCP) program provides the framework and tools to work with high-risk patients to prevent and reverse their unhealthy trajectory. At AFMCP, attendees learn new strategies for assessment and treatment of GI dysfunction, immune/autoimmune disorders, hormone-related dysfunction, insulin resistance/metabolic syndrome, toxicity-related dysfunction, nutritional deficiencies, and neurological problems. Perhaps most importantly, attendees also leave with an organizing framework that helps guide personalized, sustainable interventions.
Expert faculty will guide you through case-based seminars using real-world scenarios, providing you with techniques that you can immediately implement. Chronic disease has become rampant, and yet we know that it is largely preventable. Strengthen your skills and work with patients to promote health, encourage wellness, and improve outcomes. Join us at AFMCP to help patients like Michael move into a healthier path.
For Patients, Knowing Their Risk Is Not Enough
Personalized medicine has the potential to dramatically improve health care. Helping patients understand how their unique genetic makeup and environment interact can help them get on the path to health. But is simply knowing that one has an increased disease risk enough to change behavior? Recent research suggests that it is not.
+ Read More
A recent meta-analysis found that telling patients they were at high risk of disease based on their genotype had no significant effect in six major areas: smoking, diet, physical activity, alcohol consumption, depression, and anxiety.1 Simply communicating to patients their DNA-based disease risk estimates had little or no effect on their health-related behavior.1 Knowledge may be power, but it often takes more than just awareness of risk for patients to make meaningful lifestyle changes.
Effective personalized medicine requires not only personalized genetic information but also tailored lifestyle prescriptions that fit with each patient’s context and capacity. Studies on lifestyle interventions based on risk factors have demonstrated success in preventing chronic diseases and improving health.2,3,4,5,6,7 Yet clinicians don’t receive much training in lifestyle assessment and change counseling. Despite the efficacy, lifestyle counseling centered on the critical risk factor of weight is actually decreasing among US physicians.8 As clinicians, if we are talking to patients about personalized risk without providing them with clear guidance on how they can change their lives, we are missing an opportunity to get the most from the era of personalized medicine.
At IFM’s foundational five-day program, Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice (AFMCP), expert clinicians present detailed science and clinical strategies for how to effectively guide patients in making lifestyle changes. You’ll come home with the tools and techniques to work with your patients on preventing disease and maintaining health. Help your patients fulfill the promise of the personalized medicine era.References
- Hollands GJ, French DP, Griffin SJ, et al. The impact of communicating genetic risks of disease on risk-reducing health behaviour: systematic review with meta-analysis. BMJ. 2016;352:i1102. doi: 10.1136/bmj.i1102.
- Marquis-Gravel G, Hayami D, Juneau M, et al. Intensive lifestyle intervention including high-intensity interval training program improves insulin resistance and fasting plasma glucose in obese patients. Prev Med Rep. 2015;2:314-18. doi: 10.1016/j.pmedr.2015.04.015.
- Fianu A, Bourse L, Naty N, et al. Long-term effectiveness of a lifestyle intervention for the primary prevention of type 2 diabetes in a low socio-economic community – an intervention follow-up study on Reunion Island. PLoS One. 2016;11(1):e0146095. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0146095.
- Su W, Chen F, Dall TM, Iacobucci W, Perreault L. Return on investment for digital behavioral counseling in patients with prediabetes and cardiovascular disease. Prev Chronic Dis. 2016;13:E13. doi: 10.5888/pcd13.150357.
- Spassova L, Vittore D, Droste DW, Rösch N. Randomised controlled trial to evaluate the efficacy and usability of a computerised phone-based lifestyle coaching system for primary and secondary prevention of stroke. BMC Neurol. 2016;16:22. doi: 10.1186/s12883-016-0540-4.
- Song HY, Nam KA. Effectiveness of a stroke risk self-management intervention for adults with prehypertension. Asian Nurs Res. 2015;9(4):328-35. doi: 10.1016/j.anr.2015.10.002.
- Pool AC, Kraschnewski JL, Cover LA, et al. The impact of physician weight discussion on weight loss in US adults. Obes Res Clin Pract. 2014;8(2):e131-39. doi: 10.1016/j.orcp.2013.03.003.
- Kraschnewski JL, Sciamanna CN, Stuckey HL, et al. A silent response to the obesity epidemic: decline in US physician weight counseling. Med Care. 2013;51(2):186-92. doi: 10.1097/MLR.0b013e3182726c33.
The Increased Challenges of Patients With Multiple Diagnoses
As a clinician, you likely see patients who have multiple chronic conditions every day. Approximately one in four adults has more than one chronic condition.1 Although this is especially likely in the elderly (85+ years),2 it is also true across all age brackets.1 Such comorbidity has been increasing over time: between 2003-2009, incidence of comorbid chronic conditions rose 40% for patients in Ontario, Canada—from over 17% to over 24% of patients.3 These individuals face a range of challenges, including difficulty finding and keeping a job,4 increased risk of major health decline,5 and increased mortality.5
Patients with multiple chronic issues can be difficult to treat, in part because chronic conditions often have a more than additive effect on symptoms: patients tend to experience more disability with two chronic conditions than either individual condition alone would suggest.6 In addition, treating multiple chronic conditions may require a very different approach than treating each individual condition.6,7
Marcelle Pick, NP, on how the framework of Functional Medicine helps to treat patients with multiple comorbidities:
+ Read More
Some of the key elements for successfully treating these complex patients have been identified in recent research, including security, continuity, and genuineness.8 But how do you provide this connection? Treating patients with multiple comorbidities raises many challenges, but Functional Medicine provides a framework for approaching chronic diseases that helps address the root causes of the problem. Join us at Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice (AFMCP) this March 13-17, in Huntington Beach, CA, and you'll get tools and patient education materials to help you rapidly assess and design personalized treatments that address the underlying causes of each patient's chronic illness. You’ll walk out the door armed with the latest in medical research, as well as hands-on experience using a range of tools that can help improve outcomes for your sickest patients. References
- Ward BW, Schiller JS, Goodman RA. Multiple chronic conditions among US adults: a 2012 update. Prev Chronic Dis. 2014;11:E62. doi: 10.5888/pcd11.130389.
- Collerton J, Jagger C, Yadegarfar ME, et al. Deconstructing complex multimorbidity in the very old: findings from the Newcastle 85+ study. BioMed Res Int. 2016;2016:8745670. doi: 10.1155/2016/8745670.
- Pefoyo AJ, Bronskill SE, Gruneir A, et al. The increasing burden and complexity of multimorbidity. BMC Public Health. 2015;15:415. doi: 10.1186/s12889-015-1733-2.
- Ward BW. Multiple chronic conditions and labor force outcomes: a population study of U.S. adults. Am J Ind Med. 2015;58(9):943-54. doi: 10.1002/ajim.22439.
- Koroukian SM, Warner DF, Owusu C, Given CW. Multimorbidity redefined: prospective health outcomes and the cumulative effect of co-occurring conditions. Prev Chronic Dis. 2015;12:E55. doi: 10.5888/pcd12.140478.
- Vogeli C, Shields AE, Lee TA, et al. Multiple chronic conditions: prevalence, health consequences, and implications for quality, care management, and costs. J Gen Intern Med. 2007;22(Suppl 3):391-95. doi: 10.1007/s11606-007-0322-1.
- Tinetti ME, Bogardus ST Jr, Agostini JV. Potential pitfalls of disease-specific guidelines for patients with multiple conditions. N Engl J Med. 2004;351(27):2870-74. doi: 10.1056/NEJMsb042458.
- Grinberg C, Hawthorne M, LaNoue M, Brenner J, Mautner D. The core of care management: the role of authentic relationships in caring for patients with frequent hospitalizations. Popul Health Manag. 2016;19(4):248-56. doi: 10.1089/pop.2015.0097.
Using the Timeline as a Diagnostic Tool
to download the
Functional Medicine Timeline
Years ago, clinicians used to have time to sit with each of their patients and take detailed histories. But times have changed. Now much of the history-taking is done via intake paperwork filled out ahead of time, followed by a few minutes of face-to-face review. Yet the patient history is still vital to uncovering the cause of a patient's dysfunction. Indeed, as the famous physician Sir William Osler said, "If you listen to your patient, they will tell you their diagnosis."
+ Read More
Taking time to listen to your patient and take a detailed history may indeed allow the patient to lead you to the diagnosis. But the current health-care model makes it challenging to find the time to do this. One way to create more time for history-taking is to schedule longer initial appointments and devote the entire appointment (however long it may be) to history-taking. Another way to guide patients in their effort to tell you their diagnosis is to use tools that help you elicit and organize the relevant information from their history.
Dr. Kristi Hughes describes one experience utilizing the timeline to diagnose and understand a patient's underlying condition
You can design your own intake form (or adapt an existing one, such as the ones in the IFM toolkit
) to collect the pertinent information. And you can use organizing tools, such as the Functional Medicine Timeline, to detect patterns that you wouldn't otherwise see. Patients rarely tell their stories in a coherent, chronological order. The timeline helps you to organize important life events along with clinical signs and symptoms in a visual chronology, enabling you to make connections that often point in the direction of the diagnosis.
At IFM's foundational five-day course, Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice, you will learn how to use the Functional Medicine Timeline, along with other organizing tools, to help make the most of your history-taking process. You will also get access to the IFM Clinical Practice Toolkit, which contains several different types of intake forms that you can adapt to make your own.
Worrying Trends Suggest Increasing Morbidity
First, the good news: a recent longitudinal study found that in the US, longevity continues to increase.1 Unfortunately, the study also found that the proportion of a person’s life in which they could expect to live disability-free is decreasing—and that the young will have more years with disability than individuals over 65.1 Decreasing quality of life may continue to be all-too-common as the younger generation matures. As clinicians, we can help by promoting health and wellness for our patients, and doing it early and often.
+ Read More
In the rush of a short patient visit, it can be challenging to focus on long-term health with patients. Yet as our patient populations become increasingly ill, we need strategies and patient education to help with lifestyle change. With the right tools, you can empower patients to make the changes they need.
One small step you can take to promote patient health and wellness is attending IFM’s five-day course, Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice
(AFMCP). In an interactive learning environment built around patient cases, you’ll gain practice with a suite of intake and treatment tools. These tested tools will help you connect the dots for patients and guide them toward an increased understanding of how their daily decisions affect their long-term health.
Join the many clinicians who have decided to focus on patient wellness and chronic disease prevention at AFMCP. You’ll walk out the door with tools and techniques to focus on prevention and wellness promotion, helping you assess, diagnose, and treat the kinds of chronic conditions that lead to long-term disability. You can make a difference and increase the disease-free years your patients can expect to live.Reference
- Crimmins EM, Zhang Y, Saito Y. Trends over 4 decades in disability-free life expectancy in the United States. Am J Public Health. 2016;106(7):1287-93. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2016.303120.
Lifelong Influences on Health: Childhood Antibiotics and Adult Health
Antibiotics have an important role in medicine, but as you may already know, the CDC states that they are frequently overused: up to 50% of antibiotic prescriptions are not optimal or effective.1 Systemic effects are particularly dramatic when antibiotics are given to infants, and research suggests that the effects of antibiotics on the pediatric microbiome can persist into adulthood.2 Recent research shows that frequent antibiotic use in childhood may increase the likelihood of a variety of conditions, such as allergies,3 asthma,4,5 atopic disorders, autoimmune disorders, obesity, and infections.2 It also appears that some of the effects of antibiotic exposure depend on genetic susceptibility.6
+ Read More
Gathering a complete patient history for those with chronic diseases should include asking patients about their early antibiotic exposure—especially for patients with allergy, autoimmunity, and obesity. When you know that early antibiotic exposure is an underlying factor in a patient’s chronic dysfunction, you can address the root cause with a treatment plan that helps to reestablish balance among the gut microflora. This can often mean the difference between restoring a patient to wellness and years of ongoing chronic issues. Early childhood antibiotics are only one of a range of early life factors that affect health throughout adulthood. Collecting and interpreting this information can become part of your daily clinical practice, and IFM can help by providing a suite of patient-focused forms to gather, organize, and interpret early life and current health information.
Focusing on why patients have their particular symptoms and treating the root cause can change your perspective. Mark Hyman, MD, Director of the Cleveland Clinic Center for Functional Medicine and Chairman of the Board at IFM, shares his perspective on the detailed patient history as a key element of treatment:
Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice (AFMCP), IFM’s five-day foundational training course, gives you hands-on experience using these forms and interpreting the data. You’ll walk out the door with patient assessment and intake forms that allow you to uncover the underlying causes of your patients’ chronic conditions and tailor your treatments to their specific needs.
- CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). Antibiotic resistance threats in the United States, 2013. CDC. http://www.cdc.gov/drugresistance/threat-report-2013/pdf/ar-threats-2013-508.pdf. Published 2013. Accessed September 2, 2016
- Vangay P, Ward T, Gerber JS, Knights D. Antibiotics, pediatric dysbiosis, and disease. Cell Host Microbe. 2015;17(5):553-64. doi: 10.1016/j.chom.2015.04.006.
- Fouhy F, Guinane CM, Hussey S, et al. High-throughput sequencing reveals the incomplete, short-term recovery of infant gut microbiota following parenteral antibiotic treatment with ampicillin and gentamicin. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2012;56(11):5811-20. doi: 10.1128/AAC.00789-12.
- Risnes KR, Belanger K, Murk W, Bracken MB. Antibiotic exposure by 6 months and asthma and allergy at 6 years: findings in a cohort of 1,401 US children. Am J Epidemiol. 2011;173(3):310-18. doi: 10.1093/aje/kwq400.
- Russell SL, Gold MJ, Hartmann M, et al. Early life antibiotic-driven changes in microbiota enhance susceptibility to allergic asthma. EMBO Rep. 2012;13(5):440-47. doi: 10.1038/embor.2012.32.
- Lee E, Kwon JW, Kim HB, et al. Association between antibiotic exposure, bronchiolitis, and TLR4 (rs1927911) polymorphisms in childhood asthma. Allergy Asthma Immunol Res. 2015;7(2):167-74. doi: 10.4168/aair.2015.7.2.167.
Functional Medicine Through Active Learning
For two decades, the Institute for Functional Medicine has offered its foundational 5-day program, Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice (AFMCP). This groundbreaking program integrates science, research, and clinical insights to help treat and prevent chronic disease.
IFM continues to lead the way in transforming continuing medical education. Our clinical content has always been innovative, and our educational presentation format is state-of-the-art. Instead of hours of long lectures, at AFMCP you are engaged in an active learning experience. IFM leads the way in best practices for continuing medical education:
+ Read More
- Case-based learning is the central presentation method for clinical material at AFMCP. By working with real patient information in small groups, you can hone your diagnostic skills and learn from your peers. The cases frame Functional Medicine in the context of patient care so you can immediately apply the tools.
- Learner-centered activities based on proven adult-learning methods assist you in understanding and applying the Functional Medicine Toolkit. The toolkit contains an impressive array of intake forms, assessment questionnaires, patient education handouts, dietary plans, and other resources. Structured activities provide experience in selecting the right tool, using it appropriately, and interpreting the findings.
- Experienced Functional Medicine Facilitators work with small groups of participants to answer questions and provide practical advice about how to apply the Functional Medicine model and use the presented resources in practice.
Join IFM for AFMCP and benefit from a collaborative, case-based medical education experience. You’ll come home ready to utilize these concepts immediately in your own practice. If you've been considering attending AFMCP, there has never been a better time to go!
Why Start with the Gut?
Since approximately half of Americans have at least one chronic condition,1 understanding the major underlying causes of those conditions has become increasingly important. For many patients, the gastrointestinal tract plays a key role in modulating immune function and systemic wellness—with symptoms as diverse as joint pain, migraines, fatigue, and acne.
+ Read More
IFM’s five-day course, Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice (AFMCP), will reframe the underlying physiological drivers and modifiable lifestyle factors influencing wellness. This course is anchored in the latest scientific research on the physiology and behavioral factors that affect both health and illness. Research will be paired with practical, clinically applicable tools to work with patients, and you will have a chance to try these tools out for yourself in case-based sessions designed to cement your understanding.
The first day of AFMCP includes a deep discussion of gut health. Watch the video below to hear Patrick Hanaway, MD, Chief Medical Education Officer at IFM and Medical Director at Cleveland Clinic’s Center for Functional Medicine, discuss why gut health is so important for overall health, as well as such a frequent factor in chronic disease:
Join us for AFMCP and come away with an enriched framework for treating the chronically ill population, a framework that includes proper consideration of the gut. You’ll come home ready to work with patients on gut health and other underlying factors that can make a big difference in their outcomes.
- Ward BW, Schiller JS, Goodman RA. Multiple chronic conditions among US adults: a 2012 update. Prev Chronic Dis. 2014;11:E62. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.5888/pcd11.130389.
Moving Beyond Standardized Diets
Despite recent advances in nutrigenomics, the idea that a given food has the same effect on all individuals is still widespread. A recent study found that after ingesting identical foods, blood glucose levels could vary by up to 20% in the same individual and up to 25% across individuals.1 These results suggest that even within an individual, metabolism depends on many contextual factors.
+ Read More
Another study strongly supports that notion by demonstrating that individuals have dramatically different glucose responses to the same meal.2 Using continuous glucose monitoring and standardized meals, the researchers found that identical meals led to very different physiologic effects. The authors conclude that:
|“This high interpersonal variability suggests that at least with regard to PPGRs [postprandial glycemic responses], approaches that grade dietary ingredients as universally ‘good’ or ‘bad’ based on their average PPGR in the population may have limited utility for an individual” (p. 1089).2|
In an era in which more data is available about individual patients than ever before, we as healthcare practitioners can achieve amazing outcomes by using this information to provide personalized medical care based on each individual patient’s needs. But how do you develop a framework for customizing dietary treatment plans that take into account all the relevant data?
The Institute for Functional Medicine’s foundational five-day course, Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice (AFMCP), connects practitioners to personalized evaluations and clinical tools that can be tailored to each patient’s specific physiology (including genetics, lifestyle, and motivation to change). AFMCP gives you the tools to prescribe effective treatment plans customized to individual patient needs across the socioeconomic spectrum.
Join us this year at AFMCP to fine-tune your practice and learn how to apply these simple tools to customized patient nutrition and lifestyle recommendations.
- Matthan NR, Ausman LM, Meng H, Tighiouart H, Lichtenstein AH. Estimating the reliability of glycemic index values and potential sources of methodological and biological variability. Am J Clin Nutr. 2016 Sep 7. pii: ajcn137208. [Epub ahead of print].
- Zeevi D, Korem T, Zmora N, et al. Personalized nutrition by prediction of glycemic responses. Cell. 2015;163(5):1079-94. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cell.2015.11.001.
Improving the Odds: Lifestyle Changes for Hypertension
Every year, 38.9 million physician visits involve patients with essential hypertension as the primary diagnosis.1 This makes it the second leading cause of physician office visits (only routine infant/child check-ups are more common).1 Hypertension, as well as many other cardiometabolic conditions, tends to respond well to lifestyle changes, but how do we motivate patients to adopt lifestyle changes that are realistic, achievable, and truly effective?
For some practitioners, the challenge of lack of compliance for lifestyle changes can lead to feeling disillusioned and resigned, reluctant to discuss lifestyle changes that are still considered essential.2 Lifestyle change is hard, for hypertension as well as many other chronic conditions, but with the right tools, we can help our patients get it right.
+ Read More
At IFM, we provide the framework, tools, and patient education materials that help make your counsel about lifestyle recommendations stick. A suite of materials provides clear instructions and motivational information that helps meet patients where they are and get them to where they need to be.
IFM’s Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice (AFMCP) course provides the tools and materials that will help you assess readiness to change, current risk factors, and appropriate exercise prescriptions. You'll get the tools and the know-how to empower your patients to reverse chronic problems like hypertension, cardiometabolic syndrome, and other chronic issues. Join us at AFMCP and improve both your patient lifestyle conversations and your patient outcomes.
- CDC/National Center for Health Statistics. National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey: 2010 summary tables. Table 13. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/ahcd/namcs_summary/2010_namcs_web_tables.pdf. Accessed 8/31/2016
- Howes F, Warnecke E, Nelson M. Barriers to lifestyle risk factor assessment and management in hypertension: a qualitative study of Australian general practitioners. J Hum Hypertens. 2013;27(8):474-48. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/jhh.2013.9.
Tools to Engage Patients and Improve Diagnostics
Research demonstrates that many patients are eager to adopt information-sharing practices, and that increased patient engagement may lead to better outcomes. For example, the growing practice of sharing clinical encounter notes with patients may support ongoing health promotion efforts.1 A recent BMJ study found that clinicians who shared clinical notes with patients reported increased understanding of the diagnosis and treatment process among their patients.2 Patients reported increased adherence to treatment recommendations and feelings of partnership in the clinical encounter. After two years, all of the patients and clinicians involved in the study reported that they wanted to continue with the practice.2
+ Read More
The connection between the patient-clinician relationship and eventual outcomes is hard to overstate. Functional Medicine offers tools and a framework for connecting with, documenting, and reflecting back key clinical information to patients. Many practitioners find that using the Functional Medicine tools provides contextual information that changes how they view each patient. The patient can also return home with the document and use it to update their patient history and frame any changes in their health. This increases willingness to change.
IFM’s foundational, five-day course, Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice® (AFMCP), integrates the latest medical research with clinical tools to help you build your patient-focused practice. At AFMCP, you’ll learn how to apply these tools while working in small groups to solve real cases as well as the best methods for engaging patients in implementing their treatment plans. Join us at AFMCP and take the next step toward developing strong, long-term partnerships with your patients.
- Jacob JA. Patient access to physician notes is gaining momentum. JAMA. 2016;315(23):2510-11. doi: 10.1001/jama.2016.5575.
- Esch T, Mejilla R, Anselmo M, Podtschaske B, Delbanco T, Walker J. Engaging patients through open notes: an evaluation using mixed methods. BMJ Open. 2016;6(1):e010034. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2015-010034.
Creating Strong Patient Relationships
Many experienced clinicians have noted the relationship between the length of time they have known a patient and that patient’s willingness to trust them and comply with treatment plans. But it doesn’t necessarily have to take years for patients to develop this trusting relationship with their clinician. There is a way to shorten the cycle and increase patient engagement and empowerment, leading to increased patient compliance among all your patients.
+ Read More
One major emphasis of the tools and methods taught at IFM’s Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice (AFMCP) program is how to quickly, effectively increase your ability to connect with patients and empower them so that they feel invested in improving their own health. Including the patient in a shared process of developing their treatment plan helps them feel much more motivated to follow through.
Recent studies have linked perceptions of clinician empathy to greater patient satisfaction, better outcomes, decreased physician burnout, and a reduced incidence of medical errors and malpractice suits. AFMCP provides structured tools and the know-how to build a strong relationship with patients from the first visit, even in the limited time most of us have for each appointment.
Henri Roca, MD, an expert Functional Medicine practitioner and a facilitator at AFMCP, shares his reaction when he first attended AFMCP:
Join an expert group of IFM educators this September 19-23 in Baltimore, Maryland, and you’ll walk out the door not just reenergized but with practical, tested techniques for reliably connecting with all types of patients. The partnerships you’ll create will benefit both your patient and yourself.
Go Beyond Theory to Improve Patient Outcomes
The best learning experiences involve a dynamic interplay between theory and application. At IFM’s Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice (AFMCP), attendees participate in their own learning and thereby acquire skills to apply immediately in the clinic.
Expert speakers lecture on the biochemical foundations of disease and wellness, while facilitated small group sessions and case studies help turn theory into practice. Experienced Functional Medicine practitioners guide clinicians in using these newly learned concepts for better patient outcomes.
+ Read More
Detailed case studies illustrate how to use the tools and techniques of Functional Medicine to identify the underlying causes of disease, allowing you to go beyond symptom management and address the biochemical culprits of dysfunction. Many clinicians leave with a new perspective and agency, ready to achieve the outcomes they always dreamed of with their chronic disease patients.
Take the next step to advance your clinical practice. Join us at AFMCP and return to your clinic with a renewed sense of purpose, along with tools and strategies to assess and treat the underlying causes of chronic disease.
Lifestyle, Diet, and Helping Patients with Mental and Physical Illnesses
As the incidence of chronic conditions continues to rise, the proportion of Americans with mental health conditions has followed. Anxiety, depression, obsessive behaviors, eating disorders, and other conditions often occur in concert with health conditions such as metabolic syndrome, autoimmune disorders, and cardiovascular concerns. In fact, patients with mental illnesses may be more likely to come to the doctor's office with minor illnesses than patients without mental health diagnoses.1
Nutritional changes can address both physical concerns and mental health issues.
+ Read More
Depression is known to be affected by nutrition: both its severity and duration can be modified by dietary changes.2
A connection between GI microbiota - which in turn are heavily influenced by diet - and mental health has been demonstrated for anxiety, metabolic syndrome, mood disorders, and stress management, among others.3
Studies have also linked poor nutrition to increased incidence of mental illness in adolescents4
while an improved diet has been correlated with better mental health in children and adolescents. Increasingly, psychiatrists are recognizing the primacy of nutrition in treating mental illness.7
How do you encourage patients to adopt new dietary habits and improve their nutrition as part of a treatment plan for both mental and physical illnesses? Join us at Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice
(AFMCP), IFM's five-day foundational training course, and learn how to introduce lifestyle changes, assess patient behaviors, and encourage sustainable change.
The AFMCP curriculum gives you a roadmap for guiding patients through lifestyle change-including how to adjust your assessment, intervention, and follow-up protocols to focus on identifying underlying causes and selecting appropriate treatments. Dietary changes can seem challenging to many patients, especially those with mental health issues, but AFMCP can help you implement practical strategies with these patients that will actually work.
At AFMCP, you'll receive clinical tools
, including the Functional Medicine Matrix, detailed patient intake forms, and patient education documents that will help you communicate with your patients about lifestyle change. These tools will transform the way you work with patients, and you'll be amazed by the results.References
- Hartman TO, van Rijswijk E, van Ravestijn H, et al. Mental health problems and the presentation of minor illnesses: data from a 30-year follow-up in general practice. Europ J Gen Pract. 2008; 14:s1, 38-43
- Rao TSS, Asha MR, Ramesh BN, et al. Understanding nutrition, depression and mental illnesses. Indian J Psychiat. 2008;50(2):77-82. doi:10.4103/0019-5545.42391.
- Zhou L, Foster JA. Psychobiotics and the gut-brain axis: in the pursuit of happiness. Neuropsych Dis Treat. 2015;11:715-723. doi:10.2147/NDT.S61997.
- Jacka FN, Rothon C, Taylor S, et al. Diet quality and mental health problems in adolescents from East London: a prospective study. Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol. 2013 Aug;48(8):1297-306.
- Liu J, Hanlon A, Ma C, et al. Low blood zinc, iron, and other sociodemographic factors associated with behavior problems in preschoolers. Nutrients. 2014;6(2):530-545. doi:10.3390/nu6020530.
- O'Neil A, Quirk SE, Housden S, et al. Relationship between diet and mental health in children and adolescents: a systematic review. Am J Pub Health. 2014;104(10):e31-e42. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2014.302110.
- Sarris J, Logan AC, Akbaraly TN, et al. Nutritional medicine as mainstream in psychiatry. Lancet Psych. 2(3): 271-274.