Rangan Chatterjee, an IFM-trained general practitioner in the United Kingdom, has a new book that aims to help patients simplify their approach to making sustainable lifestyle change. Released in the United States on May 1, How to Make Disease Disappear has already sold 70,000 copies in its first three months of publication in the UK. While the book only mentions the term “Functional Medicine” briefly, Chatterjee is clear about the fact that the book is aimed at helping teach Functional Medicine lifestyle strategies to patients.
I’m very, very proud of my IFM training. It actually reengaged me in medicine.
“The approach I take in my book is very much rooted in Functional Medicine. The tools in the book, the principles, I learned though IFM,” said Chatterjee. “I’m very, very proud of my IFM training. It actually reengaged me in medicine.”
The book was born in part out of Dr. Chatterjee’s experiences on the two seasons of the television series Doctor in the House, which aired on BBC One in the UK. In the show, Chatterjee spent time in the homes of patients with chronic diseases and help them find their way toward wellness. “I found that no matter what disease a person had, these four lifestyle factors (stress, sleep, diet, and exercise) made a difference,” he said.
It’s deceptively simple: you consciously change your lifestyle to unconsciously change your physiology.
That experience, along with 17 years of seeing over 10,000 patients and figuring out what really works in the clinic, led him to write the book. “A lot of books are disease focused,” Chatterjee said. “I wanted to change the message: no matter what disease you’ve got, change in these four areas will help. If you are sick, you’ll get better. As doctors, we sometimes tend to overcomplicate health. This book is trying to simplify health. It’s deceptively simple: you consciously change your lifestyle to unconsciously change your physiology.”
About 25% of the book is dedicated to each of the four pillars, which he titles Rest, Eat, Move, and Sleep, as he feels each is equally important in health. Patients can dive into whichever pillar they want to get started. “I am writing this book to try to transform the health of as many people as possible. It is not about perfection – I’m just asking patients to do a little bit in each of the four areas,” Chatterjee said.
So how can the book help Functional Medicine practitioners? “It’s a simple and accessible way to get patients invested in making changes for their health, no matter the condition,” Chatterjee said. “Sometimes as Functional Medicine practitioners, we get too focused on the science; this book is a one-stop shop that applies to every patient, no matter the diagnosis. It gets the patient going in the right direction. It’s literally all of my tips, tricks, and tools, especially for the hard to treat or hard to motivate patients.”
For more on How to Make Disease Disappear, click here view the table of contents and part of the first chapter.