PENDLETON — Getting old — it’s really just part of the plan. Even though aging is a normal process, we may not be familiar with what’s entirely normal and what’s not.
Memory loss is one of those things that can be downright disturbing, especially when Alzheimer’s Disease and dementia seem all too pervasive in our culture. Dr. Stephen Elliott comes to the Pendleton Community Public Library at 10 a.m. tomorrow in a free presentation to set the record straight.
“Too often we simply accept the notion that the aging process is one of inevitably advancing frailty, fatigue and debility,” Elliott notes on his website.
Elliott has documented his approach, called functional medicine, and how it differs from conventional medicine. First, Elliott said that functional medicine looks for root cause when there’s dysfunction, rather than simply rendering a diagnosis and prescribing a drug. The approach honors each human body as unique, and demands individualized treatment rather than one-size-fits-all diagnoses and treatments. Functional medicine also looks at interconnections rather than treating body systems separately.
“Where Conventional Medicine reflexively writes prescriptions, Functional Medicine restores optimal function more naturally – correcting nutritional deficiencies, restoring hormonal imbalances, minimizing immune stressors, eliminating food hypersensitivities….,” Elliott said.
Finally, Elliott said that functional medicine “addresses the inter-relatedness of body, mind and spirit.”
Elliott may have come to that sense of that inter-relatedness via his professional path that started with a spiritual focus. In 1983, he earned a Masters of Divinity from Duke University, and served as a pastor for over ten years. He earned his MD in 1996 from the Indiana University School of Medicine. He has been a board certified family practitioner since 1999. In 2008, he became a diplomat of the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine.
Elliott now expresses the view that, “Today, in America, the health care system is broken. Health insurance has become disease insurance. Health care has become disease care.” He’s out to strike a different path.