What is Functional Medicine?
Functional medicine is a systems biology–based approach that strives to determine how and why illness occurs in an individual. Treatment plans restore health by identifying and addressing the root cause of disease on a personalized basis. At Kemper, we combine functional and conventional medicine with personalized care to look at your whole body and address your symptoms at the source.
The Functional medicine model is a whole body, individualized approach to disease causes based on the evolving research in nutritional science, genomics, and epigenetics. Today, we apply these advances to address root causes using low-risk interventions that modify molecular and cellular systems to reverse drivers of chronic disease and heal the body from the inside, out. Quite frequently, this approach brings dramatic results to individuals who had previously been unsuccessful with traditional treatments.
Functional medicine focuses on:
• Uncovering root causes for your symptoms, dysfunction, and disease
• Leveraging your body’s innate capacity for healing by giving it what it needs, and remove barriers to healing
• A personalized plan of necessary steps to restore function
Symptom Management vs. Restoration of Wellness
A diagnosis may be the result of more than one cause. Likewise, a cause may lead to a number of different diagnoses. Since we are all unique in our genetic makeup, lifestyle, and health history, only treatments that address the right cause or multiple causes will have lasting benefit beyond symptom suppression. Functional medicine aims to restore balance to the entire system (hormones, gut, detoxification, stress response systems).
Most doctors use prescriptions and/or surgeries to treat symptoms of disease. And while this is effective for medical stabilization in emergencies, many infections, and trauma, it has proven to be highly ineffective for many chronic diseases affecting millions of Americans.
This approach is sometimes referred to as a band aid… or “a pill for an ill.”
This care model drives our entire healthcare (read: “sick care”) system, including the insurance-based reimbursement model. It is a broken and unsustainable model; Americans are getting sicker, and insurance companies and hospital systems are getting richer.
We get to know you as a person.
Did you know our board-certified physicians and coaches spend on average 5x longer with you than many other doctors? Our clients see real results while spending significantly less money on prescriptions, specialists and procedures.
We help our clients get real, lasting results.
“I found Dr. Bergman about 6 years ago. He has literally changed my life. I went from feeling sub-par for many years (exhaustion, brain fog, memory issues) to being on top of the world with high energy and a clear mind. His compassion, cutting edge expertise and resources inspires me to continue my pursuit for optimal living. Thank you for enhancing my life, as well as my kids and my 91-year-old mom who is going strong!”
-Patricia, 51 years
“I knew something was not right with my emotional and physical health. Two doctors told me they didn’t know what was causing my symptoms, but I could use birth control or anti-depressants to attempt to fix them. I wasn’t looking to take medicine. I wanted to understand the root cause and address it with lifestyle changes. Traditional medicine didn’t have time to help me get to root causes. I’m so glad to have made the investment of my time and money to work with Dr. Bergman and his team. They provided data explaining my current health state. It gave me an understanding of how to enhance my lifestyle so that my total health improves during this stage of life rather than living with a handful of prescription meds. I am back in control.”
-Cynthia, 44 years
“After years of battling fatigue, anxiety, and insomnia, Dr. Bergman got to the source of my symptoms. Because of his own research and personal journey, he was able to look past routine medical knowledge and decipher what was really happening.
He and his staff are guiding me holistically to a state of wellness that no other practitioner has been able to achieve. I feel better than I have in years. I am thankful to have found Kemper Cognitive Wellness, where I am finally finding real solutions to my health and wellness needs.”
-Michelle, 55 years
“Our 20-year-old son, a sophomore in college at the time, had been suffering from anxiety and depression. We went to our family physician, along with a psychiatrist who recommended mental health medication. There were a few lab results that confirmed some of the symptoms, however, not the complete picture. We were referred to an Endocrinologist and followed up twice in the year a half based upon lab results. We knew we were missing something but weren’t sure how to proceed to getting the answers we badly needed.
Through a very thorough and comprehensive process that included background paperwork along with a host of bloodwork, Dr. Bergman was able to assist us with the missing pieces that led to my son’s accurate diagnosis and treatment.
I truly felt that we worked as a team, which had been completely missing from the prior physicians’ offices. We cannot thank Dr. Bergman enough for helping us identify the two autoimmune diseases my son was diagnosed with; the two diseases are often diagnosed together but can be missed when the correct bloodwork is not ordered to begin with.”
“Why don’t you take insurance?”
Again, the current standard of care system is unable to care for YOU specifically. It is medicine for the statistically average person. YOU are not a statistic. YOU are individual with your own unique set of circumstances. Those circumstances are likely what led you to get sick in the first place.
We all know intuitively that spending 10-20 minutes with a doctor (or other healthcare provider) is not enough time to sort through complex issues. It’s barely enough time to talk about one issue and receive a prescription for it. We believe people need to be heard and understood and the resulting treatment plan needs to be personalized to your specific needs. This is not possible in the standard of care. Your insurance only pays for a doctor to spend 10-20 minutes. Most insurances, including Medicare, exclude nutrition/dietitian services except in rare cases of specific diseases. And, virtually no medical insurance plan covers the very valuable services delivered by health coaches.
Even for individuals that feel healthy, and want to remain that way, the conventional medical model has no answers for this group of people. For example, your mother had Alzheimer’s dementia and you are concerned and want to do everything you can do prevent it. The current medical model has virtually no way to bill you for remaining healthy and preventing Alzheimer’s disease. All the incentives are to wait until you develop a “diagnosis,” for which you will be prescribed a medication or recommended surgery or other procedure. We find this this logic to be fundamentally flawed.
It is easy to see why this approach is more likely to make you remain sick while your disease is “managed.” It is not designed to deal with problems at a root-cause level. Consider the cost of not dealing with your health issues at a root cause level. In the end, both the financial cost as well as the impact on your quality of life is likely be much higher than dealing with your issues now.
Kemper Cognitive Wellness chose to step away from taking insurance in order to deliver the truly personalized and preventative care we believe is the most effective for our patients and clients. Fortunately, FSA or HSA accounts generally cover doctor visits, lab testing and supplements.