Many ancient healing modalities recognize and emphasize the interconnection between mind and body in healing. Hippocrates taught that optimal health was dependant on the fine balance of mind, body and environment. Today, we understand and accept that there is a powerful mind-body connection through which emotional, mental, social, spiritual, and behavioral factors can directly affect our health.
Your body responds to the way you think, feel and act. This response is referred to as the “mind/body connection.” When we are stressed, anxious or upset, our body responds to stress in a myriad of chemical messengers alerting us that something is out of balance and needs addressed in order to return to normal physiologic functioning. For example, high blood pressure, a stomach ulcer or chronic headaches might develop after a particularly stressful event, such as the death of a loved one or the loss of a job. A Functional Medicine practitioner sees your health in the context of you as a whole person, not just your physical symptoms.
Dr. Candace Pert
(1946-2013) was an internationally recognized pharmacologist who published over 250 research articles and was a significant contributor to the emergence of Mind-Body Medicine as an area of legitimate scientific research in the 1980’s. Dr. Pert’s research illuminated the influence neuropeptides on emotions and immunity. Her book Molecules of Emotions
is a classic in bridging science into the field of Mind – Body Medicine.
Dr. Jeffery Bland is known as the “Father of Functional Medicine,” which is a medical approach that focuses on the personalized prevention and treatment of chronic diseases. The Mind – Body connection is an integral aspect of Functional Medicine. Over the past 35 years Dr. Bland has traveled more than 6 million miles teaching more than 100,000 health care practitioners in the USA and Canada and more than 40 other countries about Functional Medicine. Here is an example of Self Assessment tool developed by the Father of Functional Medicine, Dr. Bland.