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Part 2: What’s Functional and what’s NOT? - Blog Image

Part 2: What’s Functional and what’s NOT?

BY: Andrea Nakayama

DATE: 2018-11-13

You may already know this, but I’m keen on getting the word out about what’s Functional and what’s not.


Because lately I’m seeing the word ‘Functional’ used all over the place. Honestly, I’m concerned that a term that speaks into a real solution will become jargon—that the approach itself will get diluted, and we’ll miss the key benefits and potential of a truly Functional approach.

I want to make sure you’re getting the real deal.

Both the proper definition AND the steps to practice in a Functional way.

When you know what Functional Nutrition really is, and you know how to implement the principles I’m outlining for you here, you’ll be unstoppable!

[bctt tweet=”When you know what #functionalnutrition REALLY is, you’ll be unstoppable in your practice!” username=”AndreaNakayama”]

If you tuned-in to Part 1 of this series, you know that the first benefit of practicing Functionally is this:

You’ll be treating the root causes of your clients’ issues—helping them feel better, and helping you grow your business.

Part 2 gives you the secret to HOW this is possible. I’ll share what to do (and which tools to use) to become a Functional practitioner who gets the results you want.

And, of course, you’ll learn what’s NOT Functional, and how so many people get this part wrong…

Part 2: What’s Functional and What’s NOT

There are 3 tenets of a Functional practice, and unless the programs you’re taking, processes you’re using, and people you’re following are using these 3 tenets, they just aren’t Functional.

Functional Tenet #1: Root Cause Resolution

Practicing Functionally means that we’re not chasing symptoms. Read the rest of Part 1 HERE.

Functional Tenet #2: Systems and Tools

In order to practice tenet #1—to not just believe in the powers of root cause resolution, but to truly practice it—we need let go of seductive protocols, formulas and templates in favor of solid systems and tools.


Because formulas are one-size-fits-all. And, as you know, NOBODY is the same as anyone else.

Two people with the same symptoms, or even the same diagnosis, do not need the same remedies, because they arrived at their illness in different ways.

If we take our example of the two women with Irritable Bowel Syndrome from Part 1 of this series…

They both have the following symptoms: diarrhea, constipation, (yes, both!), abdominal cramps or pains, bloating and intestinal gas.

What’s NOT Functional…

Treating both women with the same “IBS protocol” without first looking at WHY they each have the symptoms they do.

What IS Functional…
When making recommendations to any individual, we want to pay heed to bio-individuality.

To do so, we use the Functional Nutrition Matrix to determine context…

  • familial history of any similar patterns

  • birth context and childhood memories of diet, digestion and elimination

  • history and environment in which the signs and symptoms arose

  • presence of any other signs, symptoms, diagnosis or medications

  • the factors which cause the symptoms to flare

  • and

    the interventions that have helped now or in the past

Using this system—the Functional Nutrition Matrix—to capture the details specific to each client allows you to see what’s really going on for each of them.

When you know what’s really going on, you’re no longer treating the symptom alone (which leads to short-term resolution at best), but instead, you’re addressing the root causes of the person’s pain point (hello sustainable results and raving fans!)

You’ll no longer be searching for the next miracle protocol for each client you see. Hallelujah! This is because you won’t need to. You’ll have a system that works for everyone.

[bctt tweet=”I’m no longer searching for the next miracle protocol for clients. This system WORKS… ” username=”AndreaNakayama”]

Check it out:

The functional nutrition matrix by Andrea Nakayama

I developed the Functional Nutrition Matrix, along with several other tools and systems, to help practitioners like you have the success in practice that I’ve had.

And we need you to be successful. There are millions of people who aren’t being fully served by the current healthcare paradigm. We need an army of practitioners like you who are willing to go beyond the quick-fix, beyond dietary protocol, to truly practice Functionally.

Join me and the thousands of practitioners who are changing the way we do healthcare. Your first step is easy:

Click here to chat with an Advisor about whether our Functional Nutrition immersion program is right for you.

It’s not Functional Nutrition unless you’re using the Functional Nutrition Matrix.

And stay tuned…

Functional Tenet #3: The Therapeutic Partnership

And if you missed Part 1:

Functional Tenet #1: Root Cause Resolution

Be sure to check back here soon to learn the third and final tenet of a Functional practice. And remember, if the programs you’re taking, processes you’re using, and people you’re following are not using these 3 tenets, they just aren’t Functional.

We can change that.

Read more from the Functional Nutrition AlliancePart 1: What’s Functional and what’s not

The web of interconnections

The power of story

Functional Nutrition Matrix

Andrea Nakayama

By: Andrea Nakayama, FxNA Founder & Functional Medicine Nutritionist

Functional Nutrition Alliance provides the comprehensive online Functional Nutrition training in the Science & Art of the Functional Nutrition practice. Learn to address the roots of your clients’ suffering with client education, diet & lifestyle modifications.


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