Functional Medicine in Islington Central London

What is Functional Medicine?

Functional Medicine is a science-based approach to health that aims to establish & address the underlying cause of disease, illness or symptoms.

It’s underpinned by the deep appreciation that every single person is biochemically unique and therefore nutrition and lifestyle support should be individualised too.

what is functional medicine

How is Functional Medicine different?

It addresses the root cause

Conventional Medicine is brilliant in acute settings – for example in the instance of car accidents. Having had friends & family members end up in intensive care because of the above, I’m eternally grateful for Conventional Medicine that literally saved their lives.

However, when it comes to long term disease or illness such as PCOS, Conventional Medicine tends to emphasise the need for a diagnosis. Once this has been determined, certain medications are usually prescribed to manage symptoms.

And while I fully respect that there is certainly a time and place for meds, I’ve often found that when they don’t work or women with PCOS simply want to take another approach, conventional medicine has few options to offer; this is simply because conventional medicine is more focused on symptom management rather than understanding what’s causing the concerns to begin with.

I also want to highlight that this doesn’t have to be a matter of “and/or” either – there will be instances where medications might be used AND nutrition & lifestyle factors implemented while we address root causes of your symptoms.

functional medicine root cause

“I love using food + lifestyle changes to tackle my digestive + hormonal issues – they are approaches that have really opened my eyes to the world of nutrition + wellness, which has changed my life forever.”

Grace T, London

functional medicine whole body approach

Functional Medicine views your body as a whole

Conventional Medicine typically sees the body as compartmentalised organs: if you’ve got skin issues, you end up at a dermatologist. Gut issues? Gastroenterologist. Heart problems? Cardiologist. Female hormone health concerns? Off you go to the gynaecologist. And so on and so forth.

But that’s not how the body’s made up.

So in Functional Medicine, we view your body as a whole – an artwork of integrated (rather than separate) systems – that make up you, an entire human being. By doing this, we’re better able to understand how each biological system not only works but also impacts on each other.

For example, period problems such as oestrogen dominance (with symptoms of heavy periods, breast tenderness, PMS, weight that won’t shift) are very much linked to the gut; one of the reasons being that the gut micro biome (the bugs found in the gut) plays a critical role in oestrogen metabolism so if there’s disruption in the gut, it could send hormones out of whack too.

The Functional Medicine Tree

A really helpful way of understanding this is through the Functional Medicine Tree which visually demonstrates how everything is connected. Here, we’re also able to see all the factors that are considered when it comes to establishing & addressing the root cause(s) of concern.

functional medicine tree image

Source / credit: Institute of Functional Medicine.

“I recommended working with Lara to all my friends, family, colleagues + people I meet out and about because you CAN address the symptoms that are making you feel unwell rather than settling for the belief that ‘it’s just the way you are’.”

Leila M, London

what is functional medicine practitioner image

What is a Functional Medicine Practitioner?

Instead of asking “What drug matches the disease?”, a Functional Medicine Practitioner asks “Why do you have this problem to begin with?” – and then together with you, we set out to establish exactly that.

A Functional Medicine Practitioner’s approach is founded on these fundamental factors:

  • Doing no harm
  • Seeking to understand why continuously
  • Personalising health care for each individual based on scientific evidence
  • Supporting the natural healing & self-regulating mechanisms of the body
  • Entering into a therapeutic relationship with you
  • Acknowledging that wellness is about way more than the absence of disease – it’s ultimately having the confidence to navigate the landscape of your own body, period & life to an achievable state of vitality

My journey with Functional Medicine

Nutrition fascinates me. And the human body amazes me. It’s no wonder I went on to get a BSc Degree in Dietetics & become an HCPC registered dietitian.

It was not long after working in various hospital settings whilst struggling big time with PCOS symptoms of my own, that I knew that there absolutely had to be another way.

So I set out to see how I could do more, be more, make a meaningful difference. Cue: Functional Medicine – an approach that resonated with every single fibre in my being. It didn’t take much for me to pop my study cap back on to learn all about this way of doing wellness, particularly when it came to PCOS.

And the best bit about it? Clients came back with cycles that are regular, skin that’s clear, faces that aren’t hairy, newfound energy and a beautiful appreciation of what supporting & honouring their own bodies is all about.

For the last couple of years, I’ve also had the incredible privilege of working with & being mentored by one of London’s top Functional Medicine Practitioners, Steve Grant. We continue to work closely together & I’m forever grateful to be able to learn from him.

Because I believe in bettering ourselves & improving on skill whenever possible, I continue to learn from Andrea Nakayama through her Full Body Systems Courses. Andrea is an internationally-renowned Functional Medicine Practitioner who is a pioneer in both the art & science of Functional Medicine.

my journey as functional medicine practitioner

“Lara is very thorough in her approach and has definitely helped me reduce stomach sensitivity and identify my main triggers.”

Helen B, London

what to expect from functional medicine approach

What to expect from my Functional Medicine approach?

Even before your initial consultation, your journey begins. You’ll be asked (nicely) to complete a comprehensive questionnaire detailing everything from your health history to that of your great grandmas twice removed (jokes – not quite, but almost).

From this information, I’ll already start to put together pieces of your puzzle in a way that allows me to better understand your individual story, health challenges & personal goals. This way, during your initial consultation, we get to focus on the areas of primary importance.

We’ll also dive more deeply into your medical history, family history, symptoms, current lifestyle, nutrition habits, stressors & any recent lab tests you’ve already had done (not to panic if you don’t have any).

Based on the above, I’ll make some suggestions for getting you & your bod back on the same team – we chat through these together because I’m all about keeping things achievable, realistic & sustainable.

I’ll then also recommend what level of support is best suited to you going forward so that you can lay the best possible foundation for honouring your body.

My Functional Medicine Clinic in Islington, Central London

I run a busy clinic from Brighter Spaces (2A Prebend St, Islington, London N1 8PT) which is a beautiful location a few minutes walk from the Angel tube station.

Please note, that until further notice, all initial in-person consultations will be done online in accordance with current Government Guidelines regarding COVID-19.

All follow up consultations are done on Healthie, the safe & secure platform we’ll be using for the duration of working together.

Any questions? Get in touch using the form below. My door’s open & I’m always happy to chat!

“Lara is innovative and very up to date, often seeking out new approaches and tailoring them to your individual needs. Having been round the NHS system of nutritionists and dieticians, Lara is in a league of her own. I trust her 100% with my wellbeing and would encourage anyone to do the same.”

Mala S, London

Book a FREE discovery call

If you are interested in working with me, click the button below to book your complimentary 30 minute discovery call. I’ll hear where you’re at and share how I can help. You know I can’t wait!

Contact Me

Any questions? Get in touch using the form below. My door’s open & I’m always happy to chat!