Functional Medicine and Women’s Health: A Personalized Approach

Functional medicine is a much more personal approach to healthcare. It ensures that each patient is treated according to their specific needs, rather than treated as a diagnosis.

Aiming to return the body and mind to optimum balance and functionality, functional medicine can often be the most preferable route for women to embark upon to solve their health issues.

Functional medicine can also help with:

  • Hypothyroidism
  • Digestive Issues
  • Auto-Immune Disease
  • Hormonal Imbalances
  • PMS (Premenstrual Syndrome)
  • Menopause
  • Chronic Fatigue
  • Migraine Headaches
  • Diabetes
  • Cognitive Decline and Brain Fog
  • Anxiety and Depression
  • Insomnia and Sleep Disorders
Take Control of Your Heatlh

How Does it Work?

By using natural methods, deep testing, and personalized care, functional medicine aims to enable patients to get to the root cause of their health problems and reverse disease progression.

At Next Advanced Medicine, a functional medicine clinic in Tustin, CA, Dr. Candice Hall, D.C., leads an interdisciplinary team of medical doctors, chiropractors, naturopaths, and nutrition scientists to create an individualized care plan for each patient. The focus is on treating the whole patient.  They consider the interaction of genetic, environmental, and lifestyle factors that affect disease progression and treatment.  Dr. Hall and the team at Next Advanced Medicine have helped hundreds of patients reverse chronic disease including Type 2 Diabetes, Thyroid and Auto Immune Disease, and Cognitive Decline, using this personalized, functional medicine approach.

Becoming better aware of your health issues and their potential causes, triggers, and treatments is a part of how functional medicine helps you to heal yourself and STAY healed. Getting to know all aspects of your health issue and implementing positive change to avoid them worsening cultivates awareness both in your body and in your mind in order to achieve optimum health.

Hormone-Friendly Foods

Boosting hormonal function is vital in overall mental and physical health.  Estrogen, in particular, is associated with the proper functioning of the female reproductive system, among many other benefits.

Try these foods for healthy hormones:

  • Seeds: flax seeds and sesame seeds
  • Fruit: apricots, oranges, strawberries, and peaches
  • Vegetables: yams, carrots, alfalfa sprouts, kale, and celery
  • Soy products: tofu, miso soup, soy and yogurt
  • Dark rye bread
  • Legumes: lentils, peas, and pinto beans
  • Olives and olive oil
  • Chickpeas

Including these foods in your diet can help women lower their risk of developing hormonal imbalances!

Learn more from our doctors at a free seminar.

NAM Team

Call (949 943 3922) to qualify for a free seminar:

Diabetes Reversal Seminar
Tustin May 14 or Riverside May 18

Thyroid & Auto-Immune Seminar (Tustin May 22)

Cognitive Decline Seminar (Tustin May 21)

We are motivated to educate as many people as possible. Take a look at our upcoming events:  

Check Out Our Patient Success Stories:

80% of Adults Experience Adrenal Fatigue

Research shows 80 percent of adults will experience adrenal fatigue in their lifetime.

Yet there is controversy within the medical community whether this condition is a legitimate diagnosis. This disagreement is due to the inability to identify and treat adrenal fatigue in a standard way. Adrenal dysfunction manifests very differently and because of this, there is no ONE way to solve this problem.

Adrenal fatigue is caused by stress on the adrenal glands. This causes an imbalance in hormone production. The most commonly identified symptom of adrenal fatigue is an overall sense of energy depletion which takes many forms. Some individuals feel they need more sleep, lack the physical strength to exercise, and may even lose interest and motivation in areas of their work and personal lives.

What is happening inside the body when you feel this way?  The excretion of testosterone, cortisol, and adrenaline in response to stress all play a role in increasing the heart rate and blood pressure, slowing digestion, and shutting down executive brain functions.  These factors accompany other physiological changes in the body and are collectively known as the ‘stress response’.

Understandably, this elevated level of stress has serious energetic implications on the body, as well as affecting:

  • Thyroid Function
  • Blood Pressure
  • Memory
  • Sleep Quality
  • Immune Health
  • Fertility
  • Blood Sugar Levels

“How can you treat a condition that affects so many functions in the body?” 

Tired Human

Functional Medicine’s Role In The Fight Against Fatigue

Doctors may treat adrenal fatigue with drugs or energy-boosting supplements. These products have one thing in common; they only treat the symptoms instead of addressing the actual cause of and individual’s adrenal dysfunction. Conversely, functional medicine doctors focus on identifying which areas of the patient’s lifestyle can be improved, what strategies the patient can implement to overcome the fatigue and the appropriate treatment individualized plan the addresses the patient’s specific needs. 

Coffee Alternative Recipe

This adrenal -healing recipe encourages balanced blood-sugar and cortisol levels!

Try it in place of your morning coffee and you will feel the difference!


  • 3 cups kale
  • 1 tablespoon supergreens powder
  • 1 cup frozen organic blueberries
  • 1 teaspoon maca
  • 1-2 tablespoons MCT oil
  • 1 lemon (or lime), skin removed
  • 2-4 drops stevia

1. Blend until pureed
2. Enjoy!

Next Advanced Medicine Doctors

Learn more from our doctors!

Call (949 943 3922) to qualify for a free seminar:

Diabetes Reversal Seminar
Tustin May 14 or Riverside May 18

Thyroid & Auto-Immune Seminar (Tustin May 22)

Cognitive Decline Seminar (Tustin May 21)

We are motivated to educate as many people as possible. Take a look at our upcoming events:  

Check Out Our Website Recipe Blog:

4 hidden factors that are secretly damaging your thyroid

You may already know that you have a thyroid problem, but knowing is only half the battle.

The only way to heal from and reverse low thyroid is to correct the factors that caused the disease in the first place! Taking a thyroid replacement supplement might help you feel better in the short-term, but that approach does nothing to fix the circumstances that caused your thyroid metabolism to malfunction.

The foundation of a functional medicine approach to any disease or imbalance is finding out WHY your body is not functioning properly; this means we must find the root cause.

Below are the 4 hidden factors that are secretly damaging your thyroid!

1. The Liver

Your liver produces the proteins responsible for transporting thyroid hormones and is also a central hub for T4’s conversion to active or free T3. Anything that reduces liver function can also affect thyroid function. Your liver is a primary site for detoxification, so if your body is overloaded with toxins from alcohol, medication, heavy metals, environmental pollutants and chemicals, or more, you may not be efficiently converting T4 to T3.

2. The Gut

Much like your liver, if tissues within your gut are damaged, efficient conversion of active thyroid hormone will be slowed down. It is extremely likely to find intestinal damage that results in malnutrition, autoimmunity, and a variety of other symptoms in people suffering from low thyroid. Repairing gut integrity and function is critical for reversing low thyroid!

3. Stress

Stress triggers the adrenal glands to secrete glucocorticoids such as cortisol. Cortisol revs up the body and prepares it to face the stressor, whether it be real or imagined. In times of acute stress, cortisol works to support the body by reducing inflammation and suppressing the immune system.

However, chronic stress causes inflammation and hijacks the immune system. Cortisol competes for resources that your body uses to convert inactive T4 to active T3. Stress also damages the liver, reducing its capacity to filter toxins, hindering its ability to convert T4 to T3.

4. Toxins, Metals, Fluoride, and Medications

The environment is flooded with toxins, and many of those make it into our bodies via air, water, food, and surroundings. A few examples of thyroid-damaging toxins are

  • Perchlorates, a chemical byproduct of jet fuel and car airbags, seep into drinking water and blocks the thyroid from taking up necessary iodine.
  • Pesticides have also been named culprits in thyroid dysfunction.
  • Heavy metals found in the environment and in common materials like vaccines, dental fillings, paint, or deodorant all have a damaging effect on the thyroid.
  • Many medications are known to interfere with thyroid function. Some medications like glucocorticoids, dopamine agonists, or somatostatin analogs can reduce the production of TSH.

Don’t Ignore Your Thyroid

Thyroid hormone is so important to the proper functioning of metabolic processes, affecting everything from sleep, mood, energy, and weight, to skin, hair, bowel movements, and nails.

For this reason, it is critical that you, as the patient, are informed and in touch with your bodies and symptoms.

Utilizing that awareness while working with a functional medicine practitioner means that you will benefit from accurate testing, proper diagnosis, and effective treatment.

MythBusters: Four common scapegoats that “cause” your diabetes.

As with anything in life, misconceptions and myths are passed down and accepted as truth because nobody stops to think about challenging the status quo.

When you’re first diagnosed with a condition like type 2 diabetes, there are countless thoughts running through your head, many of them including “should’ve, could’ve, would’ves” and a long queue of other regrets. The way diabetes is often presented paints a pretty bleak picture—you couldn’t have avoided this, it’s in your DNA, you put yourself in this irreversible position because of the lifestyle choices you made ten years ago, and the list goes on and on.

Between the information your health care provider gives you and the countless articles you find on questionably reputable sites while perusing the web, it can definitely be hard to separate fact from fiction. The great thing about myths, though, is that they can easily be busted. So let’s take a look at some of the most common misconceptions about type 2 diabetes so that we can finally put a handful of these myths to rest once and for all.

Myth 1: Blame Your “Bad” Genes.

The thing about this myth is that, although it has been said thousands of times to countless patients, there is no definitive evidence that proves type 2 diabetes is linked to any specific gene. Even if there were a specific gene responsible for the condition, it would only affect a small segment of the diabetes population.

The reason behind this myth’s popularity is the attitude it produces. Of course, finding the root cause of a chronic condition like diabetes will prove to be a lot of work. Mainstream practitioners will often throw your genes under the bus because any patient will resign themselves to the diagnosis. If it’s in your genes, there’s nothing you can do about it, right? It’s important to bust this myth so that diabetics can feel empowered to take control over their health; otherwise, giving up can be destructive for morale and overall health.

Myth 2: Blame the Scale.

Although there is a correlation between being overweight and developing type 2 diabetes, your weight is not necessarily a cause. As many functional medicine practitioners know, being overweight can often be a symptom of a deeper, underlying issue. Just like uncontrollable glucose levels, being overweight is a sign that something else in the body is malfunctioning.

If weight was the issue, how would we explain the overweight individuals who have escaped their “destined” diabetic fate? How would we explain those with a healthy BMI who found themselves suffering from the same diagnosis?

But as mentioned before, it’s easier to state a cause then scavenging for the actual cause, so this particular myth is definitely a chart-topper when it comes to the popular excuses.

Myth 3: Blame Your Nonexistent Gym Membership.

This is a very common myth that serves as both a cause and cure in that practitioners will often say that a lack of exercise leads to a type 2 diabetes diagnosis, but they will also instruct the newly diagnosed patient to begin an exercise regimen.

This is a very classic situation in mainstream medicine. Functional medicine practitioners, however, realize that while exercise may help some patients keep their symptoms at bay, exercise (or lack thereof) is not a causative factor of diabetes, nor will it serve every diabetic the same way.

For some patients, an intense exercise regimen may actually put more stress on the body and end up doing more harm than good.

Myth 4: Blame Your Faulty Pancreas.

The most famous myth is probably the one that blames your pancreas. While it is true some type 2 diabetics’ bodies can’t produce adequate levels of insulin, there is a significant portion of the diabetic population that have no problem producing it.

The relationship between insulin and diabetes is not the lack of insulin, but rather the diabetic body’s inability to effectively utilize the insulin it produces. This particular myth might even be the most dangerous out of them all, as it typically leads to insulin therapy treatments. While these will help the diabetics who don’t produce enough insulin, injecting more insulin into a body that already produces enough can actually cause some long-term health issues and exacerbate already frustrating symptoms.

When it comes down to it, the only things these myths can diagnose is a bad case of laziness. The issue with these myths is that they assume each diabetic is exactly the same—that the treatment doesn’t have to suit the individual, just the condition. The only reason some mainstream practitioners perpetuate these myths is so that they can avoid having to dig deeper and deconstruct the condition to find the real cause.

But let this be a cure. It’s time to stop accepting these myths as fact. Let’s bust the myths so we can beat this disease.

14 Techniques for Better Sleep and Thyroid Function

Insomnia is a classic symptom of an overactive stress response and adrenal fatigue. Research has shown that a dysfunctional HPA axis and irregular cortisol production can interrupt sleep patterns. It is well known that adequate rest is essential to repairing your thyroidand easing adrenal dysfunction. However, you may be experiencing sleep disruption if your cortisol levels are spiking, causing you to wake up with a rapid heartbeat and a lot of nervous energy. The good news is there are plenty of ways to encourage a better night’s rest and support your thyroid and adrenal health.

Here are 14 ways to improve your sleep and support your thyroid

  1. Stick to a sleep schedule.

Your body does best when it knows what to do. When your body gets into a rhythm, it can recognize when it is time to produce hormones to sleep and when to wake up. Your body works on a rhythm that links the hormones needed to sleep and wake.

Train your body to produce those hormones at the same time each day.

  1. Remove blue light from your bedroom.

Create a sanctuary for rest in your bedroom. Your bed should be designated for sleep, not for binge-watching your favorite tv shows. TV and telephone screens create blue light that prevents the production of the sleep hormone, melatonin.

  1. Limit caffeine intake.

Did you know that your midday energy-boosting beverage could be causing your insomnia? Caffeine is beloved by all who need a quick pick-me-up, but it also causes the release of cortisol hormones, which is not so great for good sleeping habits. Ideally, you should avoid caffeine altogether, but if you can’t live without it, limit your consumption and make your cutoff time before noon. Doing so will allow your body ample time to calm down.

  1. Avoid alcohol.

Many swear by a glass of wine and the like before bed to get them to sleep, but the struggle to stay asleep is their bigger issue.

Alcohol does initially help you relax and drift off to sleep, but it causes elevated blood sugar levels. Once blood sugar levels balance out, cortisol rears its nervous head causing anxiety, wakefulness, and night sweats.

  1. Get regular exposure to sunlight.

You can improve your sleep behavior by adding a little sunshine to your day. Basking in the sun for at least 20 minutes a day can increase melatonin production at night.

  1. Do not eat within 3 hours of going to bed.

Eating before bed can cause wakefulness and diverts your body’s resources to digestion instead of restoration.

  1. Exercise before dinner.

Exercise is excellent when you want energy and endorphins, but not so great when you want to sleep. Make sure you hit the gym before dinner time to give your body time to slow down and get ready for rest.

  1. Keep a journal next to your bed.

Keep your mind from racing all night by writing down your concerns and to-dos before bed. Having a journal handy can help you release your anxiety and relax your mind before bed.

  1. Organize your sleep space.

Is your clutter creating unnecessary chaos in your bedroom? Create a more calming environment by keeping your bedroom in order. This will make for a more cozy and relaxing area to rest more peacefully.

  1. Practice mindfulness.

Meditation, yoga, and even gentle stretching can help you relax and calm your mind, making falling asleep much easier.

  1. Take supplement support.

Taking 200 to 400 mg of magnesium citrate or glycinate before bed will help calm the nervous system and relax muscles. These supplements also support regular bowel movements.

  1. Try melatonin.

1-3 mg of melatonin before bed can support a healthy sleep rhythm and help you get to sleep and stay asleep longer.

  1. Cut out the lights.

Light sources whether it be your clock, lamp, or street lights, could be causing you to stay awake. Invest in an eye mask and install blackout shades to keep light from disrupting.

  1. Take a hot bath.

Increasing your body temperature with a hot bath will encourage better sleep. If you want an extra boost of sleep support, try adding magnesium-rich Epsom salts for even better restfulness. Magnesium is absorbed through the skin and helps relax your muscles and encourages sleep.

Four ways to ditch type 2 diabetes for good!

If you’ve been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and are suffering from the symptoms, it’s time to take control over your health. If you’ve decided to get serious about changing your health status, the status-quo “healthy habits” guidelines may not do the trick. Exercise, managing stress, and building good nutrition habits are important, of course, to regaining optimal health. However, for type 2 diabetics, these basic principals may reverse the damage that years of inflammation and dysregulated blood sugar have caused.

I’ve outlined four major ways to take your health to the next level, and if you are willing to follow these tips, you’ll be supporting your body’s natural ability to heal itself, leaving you to enjoy life disease-free.

1. Stay Hydrated

Keeping your body hydrated helps your body deliver nutrients to your cells efficiently. Hydration will also ensure that your body excretes the waste and toxins it needs to.

It might seem as though any liquid or fluid will support your hydration; however, this is not the case.

Coffee, tea, soda, juices, and other beverages along these lines do not contribute to your daily hydration because they have extra additives that alter the way your body processes the liquids. In fact, many of these beverages can leave you dehydrated! I recommend that you drink half your body weight (in ounces) of purified, clean water every day. So, for example, someone who is 150 lbs should drink 75 oz of water per day.

2. Make Sure to Detox

We are constantly bombarded with environmental pollutants, dangerous heavy metals, pesticides, toxins, and household chemicals that are considered “endocrine disruptors.” These pollutants and toxins are definitely contributors to the prevalence of diabetes and other chronic diseases that have run rampant in our population. Functional medicine practitioners like myself use in-depth and advanced testing that will identify toxins, remove them from the body, and repair the tissue they have already harmed.

3. Bodywork

If you are suffering from type 2 diabetes and you’re struggling with weight issues, it’s important that you understand the importance of keeping your muscles, joints, and connective tissues healthy.

Carrying around excess weight adds stress to your joints, and living a sedentary lifestyle can cause your muscles to deteriorate over time, which will make it harder to become active or healthy later in life. It’s important to invest in bodywork: massages, physical therapy, acupuncture, chiropractic care, and the like. Constantly stimulating your joints, muscles, and connective tissues will help you recover.

4. Have a Support System

In the process of reversing your condition, it’s vital that you have a support system who can advocate for you and your well-being. Surround yourself with encouraging and constructive health care providers, friends, and family who will provide you with the different kinds of support you will need along the way. Type 2 diabetes is a serious condition, and it is imperative that you have a support system behind you.

(888) 585-4099