An interview for UK Health Radio with James Maskell

Healthcare has changed considerably over the last few years and disillusioned doctors and medical professionals have been hot topic in the media for a number of years. With recent strikes in the UK amongst Junior doctors an underlying level of disruption is evident. Any proposals to improve health, save money and patient experience should be considered and with change already picking up pace in the US, James Maskell shares why we should join the Movement to Solve Chronic Disease and Fall Back in Love with Medicine.


With the soul of an advocate and the mind of an entrepreneur, James Maskell has spent the past decade sparking debate and encouraging a shift away from conventional western medicine and toward a wellness-centered, functional medicine model—starting with the doctors themselves. To that end, he created Functional Forum, the world’s largest integrative medicine conference with record-setting participation online and growing physician communities around the world. He’s also the founder of the Evolution of Medicine, a community e-commerce platform, which provides highly curated and customised resources, tools, products, and services, making it easier and more affordable for conventional doctors to embark on a new way of managing healthcare. He serves on the faculty of George Washington University’s Metabolic Medicine Institute, and speaks regularly on the integrative medicine conference circuit.


James left his career in banking 11 years ago and began working in health care. He recognised that when patients/clients worked with an alternative healthcare provider, they became empowered to take greater responsibility for their own well-being. James identified a potential in this change that could be scaled up and have a knock on effect on other areas of society. He now works with providers to build a medical system that synchronises nutrition, meditation, better sleep and better relationships. Many diseases have a lifestyle connection and by focus on these areas James has seen huge change. He began his approach by alerting health professionals to a new system of health creation with the functional medicine model at its core. This personalised approach focuses on the body working as an interconnected web of systems with key priorities identified for each client. Priorities may include lifestyle strategies, food, sleep, stress management etc. James has then worked to provide health care professionals with the tools to deliver this new style of care. He has created a ‘community effect’ where he is bringing together people that care and want to deliver, working together to solve the problems.


For healthcare practitioners this approach presents two major challenges. Doctors often need to learn how to create health in patients (nutrition, sleep and exercise) and delivery often involves private practice so learning to run a business is another major obstacle. Functional Medicine is a very different operating system for understanding health and for creating a plan to get back to health. Its essential to get to the core of the issue rather than just treating the symptoms. Functional Medicine can reverse some chronic disease caused by foods, lifestyles etc. For example, Diabetes, the doctor provides the drugs to manage the condition but

a lifestyle change can reverse the condition.


James was inspired by his parents, Seth Goden and doctors he has met along the way. His book, The Evolution of Medicine has two halves. One half is for regular doctors providing an insight into functional medicine whilst the second half has a step by step guide on how to build the most effective practice.


With nutritional therapists, such as myself, trained within the Functional Medicine Model leading the way in this model of health care changes to medicine and health promotion will be interesting trends to follow. Empowering individuals to take responsibility for their own health and working with experts that can personalise an approach for everyone would be an amazing shift in our current model and could help to reverse chronic disease risk.



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Book: The Evolution of Medicine








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