What is Functional Medicine?

Functional Medicine is a scientifically based approach that focuses on addressing and identifying the root cause of disease. Each symptom, diagnosis, genetic makeup, family history, environmental trigger, food, toxin exposure and life event is thought to contribute to an individual's illness. 

Therefore, diagnosis is not just one simple answer. A diagnosis can be the result of more than one cause. It is my job to map out these causes and tie them together, just like a puzzle. I string together many triggering events or exposures and discover why you are suffering from a disease. From there, I treat the "why".

How I map it out

Through an extensive medical symptoms questionnaire and lengthy patient history, I compile a list of tests the patient should complete. These can include blood-work, functional tests or further questionnaires. Functional Medicine looks at "optimal" ranges of tests rather than pathological ranges, and ratios and patterns of tests are also evaluated. Even the smallest result can mean the biggest changes.

What happens next?

After investigating the patient history and analyzing the test results, a plan of action is put together. The next step is for the patient to be ready to move forward into a healthy life. The plan can include dietary changes, daily supplements and overall lifestyle changes. In Functional Medicine, no person should wear their disease like a Scarlet Letter-it is possible to rid yourself of disease.

Why to treat the "why"

In Functional Medicine, we believe there is no reason anyone should suffer from illness. It is our job to peel back the layers and find out why this happened and focus on the triggering event(s). By treating the why, it is not a band-aid over the problem, but a rooted treatment from the ground up.

Areas of Expertise

Dr. Melissa Manilla's passion for health and wellness started as a child, when she considered reading nutrition labels a fun task. Her lifelong love for nutrition and wellness began her academic career, as she studied Human Nutrition and Exercise Science at The Ohio State University. While in her undergraduate studies, her desire to become a physician led her to National University of Health Sciences where she completed her Doctor of Chiropractic degree. While in the midst of her chiropractic coursework she still felt something was missing and found her way back to her calling of clinical nutrition. She then pursued a Master's of Human Nutrition & Functional Medicine through University of Western States, of which she graduated with distinction. She will sit for the Certified Clinical Nutritionist exam later this year. Throughout her schooling she also found a love for acupuncture, which led her to complete over 300 hours of acupuncture coursework and certifications. With acupuncture, she can treat both musculoskeletal and internal medicine conditions. Dr. Manilla is also trained in cupping therapy as an adjunct to her care.

Throughout chiropractic school, she completed various certifications and attended numerous seminars to enhance her clinical knowledge. She has attended almost every Apex Energetics Functional Medicine seminar focusing on endocrinology, thyroid conditions, neurological health and blood work analysis. She has spent many hours at nutrition conferences, acupuncture seminars and functional medicine forums giving her a specialty of internal medicine. Her passions include autoimmune diseases, infertility, thyroid ailments, gut conditions and clinical weight control.

She has also completed many musculoskeletal based seminars including McKenzie Method Seminars A-D. This specific training modality allows her to functionally move people out of pain quickly while utilizing their own musculoskeletal movements to heal themselves. She also has certifications in Fascial Distortion Model, a soft tissue modality, and Rocktape, a taping technique to optimize motion and healing. Along with these certifications, she has completed many hours of Motion Palpation Institute training allowing her to utilize manipulations as a primary treatment and return to function.