Functional Medicine

Functional medicine uses the patient’s story as a key tool for integrating diagnosis, signs and symptoms, and evidence of clinical imbalances into a comprehensive approach to improve both the patient’s environmental inputs and their physiological function.

Functional Medicine

Functional medicine is personalized medicine that deals with primary prevention and underlying causes instead of symptoms for serious chronic disease. It is a science-based field of health care that is grounded in the following principles:

  • Biochemical individuality describes the importance of individual variations in metabolic function.
  • Patient-centered medicine emphasizes “patient care” rather than “disease care,”
  • Dynamic balance of internal and external factors.
  • Web-like interconnections of physiological factors. The body functions as an orchestrated network of interconnected systems, rather than individual systems functioning autonomously and without effect on each other.
  • Health as a positive vitality, not merely the absence of disease.
  • Promotion of organ reserve as the means to enhance health span.

We look at the underlying causes of disease, rather than focusing on the “name it”, then “tame it” game of modern medicine. These imbalances may consist of one or many of the following:

  • Hormonal and neurotransmitter imbalances
  • Detoxification and biotransformational imbalances
  • Energy or metabolism imbalances
  • Immune imbalances
  • Inflammatory imbalances
  • Digestive, absorptive, and microbiological imbalances
  • Structural imbalances from cellular membrane function to the musculoskeletal system

Our functional medicine practice uses the patient’s story as a key tool for integrating diagnosis, signs and symptoms, and evidence of clinical imbalances into a comprehensive approach to improve both the patient’s environmental inputs and his or her physiological function.

This is where our functional medicine practitioner certification shines. Functional medicine is a clinician’s discipline, and it directly addresses the need to transform the practice of primary care.

Find out more how a custom functional medicine consultation with Dr. Karen or Dr. Ian can help you achieve your goals in health!

Take a moment to read our patient’s amazing success stories working with our functional medicine practitioners.

Landon: My son Landon was having difficulty in school each year from the 10th grade to the 12th grade, his grades got steadily worse.  I was even afraid he would not graduate.  Initially I thought it was teenage depression, or even drug and alcohol use.  However, it just didn’t fit. He was a high level athlete and very motivated and committed and he didn’t hang out with others that were doing excessive drugs and alcohol.  He expressed brain fog, memory loss and confusion.  He couldn’t keep track of anything, I mean anything.  Doctor after doctor and hundreds of dollars of tests proved that he needed to be on drugs to function in society, that he would never go to college, and I was expected to accept this.  WRONG!   Landon told me he didn’t think the route we were on for his health was correct for him.  He didn’t like taking the drugs he was supposed to be taking.  He wanted to go to a functional doctor instead and clean his gut and do other things like a friend of his did with success.  We found Red Tail Wellness Center and enrolled in their specific program and protocols for Landon.  He has turned completely around with the services and modalities suggested by Dr. Ian and is actually in college making As and Bs while being a college athlete playing basketball.  We are so grateful to Dr Ian and his staff, this was life changing for our family. My son said to me, “Mom I am finally the kid I used to be”.  – Colleen, Boulder


Sam: When I walked in to Red Tail Wellness I was really struggling with ADHD, anxiety, and my health. Things had gotten better than they once were, but I was still having a lot of problems. Zoloft and Focalin helped (school would have been impossible without them, and even with them I was barely passing), but I would rather be off meds. The side effects were not fun. Thanks to Dr Ian, my last semester of school was my best in years (almost straight As! :D), and without any prescription medication. I didn’t even need my meds for tests anymore! It is hard to overstate how mind blowing that is. I feel better, work better, and I have been so much less stressed out. Despite my scepticism, Ian has really helped me a lot. I would highly recommend him to anyone of the…HEY LOOK ITS A SQUIRRRRRRLLLL!! :D…persuasion. Nothing else (and believe me, I have tried virtually everything) works as well!


Casey: I was facing a debilitating depression. Karen (and later Ian) gave me the most comprehensive nutritional analysis I have ever had and set me up on a program for recovery. Almost instantly the changes in diet, supplements and bodywork helped me lift the veil of depression and take my life back. I am eternally grateful for their compassion, intuition and expertise.


Jonathan: Ian Hollaman is a bright and gifted physician that has a practical and sensible approach to healthcare. My wife and I have been seeing Dr. Hollaman for several years now and both of us live happier, healthier and pain free lives because of it. He has helped us resolve issues ranging from allergies and sinus infections to back pain and stress & energy levels. His ability to hone in on the root causes of your problems allows you to find permanent solutions to your ailments as opposed to simply treating symptoms. Ian’s knowledge and abilities as a doctor go way beyond chiropractic. He focuses on all aspects of physical and mental health so that you can maintain or become the strong, healthy, happy person you want to be. Keep up the great work Ian. Cheers, J


Sara: Drs. Ian and Karen Hollaman provide an excellent level of care to their patients. Ian and Karen are both very knowledgeable, and they truly CARE about the people in their office. I have been seeing Dr. Ian for over 6 months now. From blood sugar issues to vertigo to a painful shoulder, Dr. Ian has never faulted in his desire to help me be the healthiest I can. He has counseled me and provided much needed support to make healthy lifestyle changes that has made a vast improvement in my life. I have full trust in Red Tail Wellness Center and highly recommend their services to anyone seeking a great chiropractor.


Michelle: As a new resident of Boulder, I did not know where to look for a good functional medicine practitioner, so I turned to the Institute of Functional Medicine which led me to Dr. Ian. Knowing that Dr. Ian was certified through the IFM really increased my confidence in his ability as a practitioner. Functional medicine differs from western medicine in that it looks for the root cause of disease, instead of treating symptoms with pharmacology. When I came to Dr. Ian 5 1/2 months ago, I had been dealing with Adrenal Fatigue, gastrointestinal issues, mental fogginess, as well as weight gain. I had been dealing with a myriad of health complaints for the last year and a half. The MD’s I saw told me I was “normal” based on my lab results, that my symptoms were all a part of my “age” (I was 49 at the time). Dr. Ian looked at my labs, looked at my symptoms, and instead of telling me I was “normal,” he made a clinical correlation between my lab results and how I was feeling. Then we went to work. He placed me on an elimination diet to help heal my gut, as well as rule out any food sensitivities. He placed me on a strong herbal protocol to help eradicate SIBO (small intestinal bowel overgrowth), which explained a lot of my GI distress. He also placed me on a protocol to help heal my adrenals. In addition, we have worked on getting my blood sugar regulated through diet, exercise, and detoxification. One of the differences I have noted with Dr. Ian is his use of applied kinesiology, which is a way of testing that links organs and glands with muscles. For example, muscle weakness in one body part can signify a problem with a certain organ or gland. Having been through this with Dr. Ian, this skeptic is now a huge believer. Another benefit of Dr. lan is that he is a chiropractor. I had weakness within my piriformis (a muscle in the gluteal region of the hips) that he was able to address and fix. This was an issue I’d been dealing with off and on for a long time. I’d strain a muscle in my hip, I couldn’t work out, I’d rest, it would go away, but then it would come back. Since Dr. Ian addressed it, it has not returned. By the end of 3 months, my GI system was in much better shape! That feeling like I had swallowed a brick every time I ate was gone, I was digesting my food well, and my issues with bloating had disappeared. By the end of 4 months, my energy levels also improved immensely. My mental clarity has improved: I am so much more focused, my ability to memorize has improved tremendously, and I have almost completed a class I began over a year ago…..before I saw Dr. Ian, I could not focus to complete it. Five and a 1/2 months in, I feel like I have my old life back. As I said before, I had been dealing with health issues for about a year and a half. To have doctors tell you over and over that your “normal,” it’s just your age, is very disheartening. Is it normal to feel like death warmed over as you age? It may be common… is NOT NORMAL! Nowadays, I have the energy available to participate in life, and I am not weighted down by this awful feeling of “I don’t feel good!” I want to participate, I want to be involved, I am ready to get on with my life! Engaging in the functional medicine approach is a lot of work. You are not going to get a pill to take care of a symptom. But you are going to be empowered to learn how to take care of yourself and learn the tools necessary to keep you on a path to health. Thank you, Dr. lan, for all you’ve done for me! I will definitely recommend you to everyone I know!


Lila: I have recommend Red Tail Wellness & Dr. Ian to quite a few people, especially those struggling with autoimmune, thyroid & ADHD issues. Dr. Ian really knows his stuff medically (diet, physiology, endocrine and neurological systems & how they interact with health, etc). He’s also an excellent chiropractor. The science is important to me, and I have learned a lot because Dr. Ian takes the time to talk. He individualizes care for each client, discusses and follows up with lab work thoroughly, and provides targeted supplements that really work. Most importantly, Dr. Ian and the staff really care about each client and take time to encourage and empower the whole person — I’ve never felt like just another patient receiving cookie-cutter care. Red Tail Wellness doesn’t take insurance, but they customize care so that it’s as affordable as possible, and — at least in my case — the recommended care plan made a BIG difference in a short period of time. Dr. Ian’s goal is wholeness, not maintenance of sickness, so he will strive to get you back on your feet and out the door in a reasonable time frame. Red Tail Wellness has been well worth my investment.


Henrietta: Before I was recommended to see Dr. Ian, my health was spiraling out of control. It was effecting my job. So much so that my job was trying to talk me into taking short-term disability for a couple of months. I was taking 80 mg of Nexium a day before Dr. Ian not to mention all the Tums, Gas-X, and anything else that would help with my stomach issues. My Sjogrens was so bad that I was having large issues with swallowing. My stomach was making me vomit, pass gas all the time, and extremely constipated. Every day I would go to work and felt sick. I had been officially diagnosed with Sjogrens Syndrome in July 2014. It was actually my eye doctor who put the diagnoses out there. I was trying to get all the various doctors I was seeing to combine their information, because I felt like everything was just pieces here and there and did not represent the full picture. In the mean-time I started to look for a nutritionist that also specialized with auto-immune diseases. I was referred to Dr. Ian for a consultation in December 2014. After seeing Dr. Ian, I realized that I also had Hashimoto’s syndrome as well. Everything started to make sense. All of my health issues were related to Sjogrens, Fibromylasia, and Hashimoto. We started treatment with me immediately. I was placed on a FOD MOD and repairvite diets. I was fructose mal-absorbent. Changing how I ate and what I ate was extremely effective. My stomach issues gradually got better. We would try different supplements to help with the issues I was still having. It was the best thing I have ever done. My digestive tract seems to have improved a lot. My insomnia is gone and I sleep great every night. I still have very dry mouth, eyes and skin. My swallowing is getting better gradually. I am taking less prescription medication. We are working on my joint and other pains that I have throughout my body. When I first saw Dr Ian I would shake with tremors all the time. I couldn’t do a simple task of touching my nose with my finger with my eyes closed. My tremors are gone unless I get stressed about something then they come back briefly. Recently I have had a really bad sore throat, we did a few different supplements and oils. My throat is finally feeling better. It took a little longer, but without the antibiotics that I usually end up on several times a year. I would highly recommend Dr. Ian. He really knows what he is doing. He is treating the causes. Other doctors just treat the immediate symptom and don’t figure out why you have teeth that are decaying, dry mouth, dry throat, dry eyes, and dry skin. Every so many months Dr. Ian would repeat the labs done on me and we would go over the results. My husband has noticed a significant change in my health as well. He has changed his diet as well and has noticed improvement in his health.


Melinda: I was diagnosed before with Hashimoto’s and a hypo-Thyroid condition but I didn’t really understand what this autoimmune disease was or what I might do about it.  I also went to Dr Ian for a “coughing fit” problem, which seemed no one knew why I was coughing so chronically. I wasn’t able to lie down on my back and relax without coughing in 5-10 min. It became so intense I had to leave the room. I had lung x-rays & CT scans but nothing showed up as wrong. I also had reoccurring cervical issues, digestive disorders, and allergies I was dealing with.

I learned so much more about Hashimoto’s, it’s symptoms, what alternative medicines and supplements to take. He diagnosed from my lab reports how stressed out I had been and my issue of distractibility was related to brain fog encouraging me to go grain free. We also worked on anti-inflammatory problems with tasty natural health products.

I started with Dr. Ian in the spring and by June I was able to travel (with my family!) for 3 weeks and be strong enough to hike in the back country (in the rain) for 3 days! I noticed a stronger lung capacity and got rid of other symptoms completely. I loved how he could ask my body what it needed or which product was more in-tune with me and it really worked. I also am very particular about getting neck adjustments and Dr Ian is the Best!

I would definitely recommend Red Tail Wellness to friends and family.


Grosvenor: Four years ago I broke five cervical vertebrae in an accident, damaging my spinal cord and temporarily paralyzing me. After surgery, neck fusion with what looks like a titanium ladder, and quite a bit of physical therapy, my life returned to some degree of normalcy. What remained with me was a bit of physical debilitation and quite a bit of nerve pain in my arms and legs.

Much of my life was all about pain management. Heavy drug usage raised havoc with my memory and brain recall functions. For the most part, I was assured that how I was was how I could expect to remain, but daily use of sleep aids and pain medications didn’t seem like an acceptable long term solution.
Fortunately, my wife discovered Dr. Hollaman and scheduled a consultation for us. He met with me, ran me through a number of tests, and convinced me that he could help me with probably 75% of my pain. While that was all I was looking for, he assured me that as a bonus I would probably lose weight, cure lifelong migraine issues, physically improve my range of motion, and generally enjoy a much healthier existence. Right!
Unlike most of his patients, I lived almost two thousand miles away. I agreed to move to Colorado for a month of intensive therapy. For the month prior to my visit I was given a rigorous regimen to follow of diet, food supplements and exercise. This was to create a healthier healing environment within.
I was getting fitter everyday, and feeling pretty healthy, but the pain remained. The work only intensified in Colorado, and after I’d been there for a week, I could tell that Dr. Hollaman was surprised that I was reporting insignificant pain reduction in my limbs. Then, almost overnight, the pain seemed to drift away. I stopped taking all of my medications and hoped for the best. I still had a couple of weeks of treatment to go.
Now, months later, while I’ve slacked off a bit on my exercises (I’m a regular guy) and loosened up on my diet more than I’d intended, I can still report this…  Dr. Hollaman gave me what other doctors said was not possible; a future without chronic nerve pain. More than that, he forever changed the way I look at my health, the way I eat, and my physical body. My pain issues are better now than they ever were with drugs, and my migraines… what migraines? I’m 62 and fit into some favorite old clothes I’ve saved from my teens!
Dr. Hollaman did what he said he could do. And me… I have so much more than I bargained for. Thank you!
Dr. Ian is a certified functional medicine practitioner (through the Institute of Functional Medicine, has his Master’s degree in Functional Medicine and Human Nutrition through the University of Western States and has specialized in this field for over 6 years.

Rest assured after your initial consultation Dr. Ian or Karen will indicate where we suspect dysfunction and what we can do to start mapping your road to recovery! If creating a team approach to getting you to your health care goals sounds exciting please contact the Red Tail Wellness Centers to get started!

Conditions We Specialize In

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Hashimoto's Care Using Functional Medicine & More

We perform a functional medicine, neurologic and applied kinesiology exam which allows us to examine and properly educate you on a course of action. Learn more about our process here.

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