Understanding the Physiology of the Functional Clinical Assessment

18 September 2016 by Leanne Scott

Understanding the Physiology of the Functional Clinical Assessment

What is it and why use it?

A Functional Clinical Assessment is just one of the techniques in an FNTP's toolbox. It is used to assess the body's innate ability for self-selection of necessary nutrients, through specific anatomical points throughout the body. It involves palpating reflex points, which are established neurovascular reflex areas that relate to each organ of the body. The reflex points are either over the location of the organ or are reflexes from the organ.

Using their knowledge of the innate connection between the nerve endings at skin level and the body's internal organs, your FNTP will ask you to rate the level of tenderness as they palpate the reflex point. The point is felt as a tight or weak muscle and is usually sensitive to palpation. Most reflex points are throughout the torso, on your abdomen and rib cage. The aim is to first understand which organs are under-functioning and contributing to your body's overall dysfunction, and second, what they need in order to regain their function.

Simply, our body can tell us what it needs.

Your FNTP can test nutrients that you may wish to consider to assist your body's recovery. He or she will do this by asking you to place a small sample of a nutrient in your mouth. When the message from the nerve endings on your tongue (your taste buds) has travelled to your brain and out to your external nerve endings (around 15-30 seconds), they will re-test the reflex points that were most sensitive. You will be amazed at how the tenderness rating will change when your body senses the right nutrient to help it heal. That's what we mean about the "body's innate intelligence" – we are incredibly complex organisms with the ability to heal ourselves, if we give ourselves the chance.

Initially developed in the 1930's, by Dr. Frank Chapman DO, Dr. Terrence Bennett DC and Dr. Robert Riddler DC, the Functional Clinical Assessment is an invaluable tool used by numerous Functional Nutritional Practitioners throughout the world. It is a reliable method of regaining nutritional balance and overall wellbeing, based on biochemical individuality.

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Leanne Scott

Leanne is a certified Functional Nutritional Therapy Practitioner, Integrative Health Coach and Lead Instructor for NTA Australia/NewZealand. She hopes to change the health of future generations through loving support and knowledge. Find Leanne at