“COVID-19 has been a loud wake-up call for people to protect their health and fight disease through the power of their daily lifestyle behaviors.”
ST. LOUIS, Mo. (PRWEB)
May 28, 2021
The American College of Lifestyle Medicine (ACLM) today announced the third annual Global Lifestyle Medicine Week, with the observance this year slated to run from May 30th to June 5th. The week will showcase the six health pillars of the burgeoning field, serving as a public awareness campaign to highlight the benefits of evidence-based lifestyle medicine therapeutic approaches, including a whole-food, plant-predominant eating pattern, regular physical activity, restorative sleep, stress management, avoidance of risky substances, and positive social connection—as a primary modality, delivered by clinicians trained and certified in this specialty, to prevent, treat, and often reverse chronic disease.
Activities of the week include helpful how-to information, daily zoom chats featuring lifestyle medicine professionals, physician and clinician testimonials, and health challenges—primarily on social media platforms.
Chronic disease, rooted in unhealthful lifestyle behaviors, is the leading cause of death and disability in the U.S., having reached epidemic proportions. Sixty percent (60%) of American adults now live with at least one chronic condition, while forty-two percent (42%) have more than one. Chronic disease now accounts for hundreds of billions of dollars in health care spending every year, representing as much as eighty-six percent (86%) of all health care expenditures.
Long before COVID-19, non-communicable, chronic disease has been a looming pandemic worldwide, not just in the U.S. Case in point, the Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation’s 2019 Global Burden of Disease Report, reviewing data from nearly 200 counties, found that it is what people are and are not eating that’s the leading cause of disease and death in the U.S. and around the world. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 80% of heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes and 40% of cancer could be prevented, primarily with improvements to diet and lifestyle.
“What the world needs now is a lifestyle medicine-first approach to real health care,” said ACLM Executive Director Susan Benigas. “Underlying health conditions—the vast majority of which are lifestyle-related chronic diseases—have exacerbated Covid-19’s most harmful effects. This is a loud wake-up call regarding the need to educate, equip and empower patients to protect their health and fight disease through the power of their daily lifestyle behaviors. The members of the American College of Lifestyle Medicine are leading the way.”
To take part in LM Week activities and amplify this need, see https://lmweek.org/.
Celebrating its 17th year as the only medical professional society in the U.S. dedicated to the field of lifestyle medicine, ACLM is experiencing exponential growth, with a membership of more than 6,000 physicians and other health professionals dedicated to clinical and worksite practice of lifestyle medicine, which is synonymous with value-based care: reining in costs, while delivering far superior patient outcomes. Interest in lifestyle medicine is growing rapidly among physicians and other health professionals desiring to treat root-causes of disease—an approach most did not learn in medical school or in other health care-related training.
Medical professionals, patients and those on Capitol Hill are awakening to the unsustainable prevalence of chronic disease, especially among those most vulnerable to health disparities, and the associated costs that stand to jeopardize the solvency and security of our nation.
The lifestyle medicine physician has been recognized by the Association of American Medical Colleges as one of the top five emerging medical careers. Board certification is also available. Since certification debuted in 2017 by the American and International Boards of Lifestyle Medicine, 1,586 physicians in the U.S. have become board certified in Lifestyle Medicine, along with 595 other health professionals; the International Board of Lifestyle Medicine has certified 1,066 outside the U.S., for a current global total of 3,247. Lifestyle medicine medical professional organizations have been established on every continent around the globe, with more than 20 represented as part of the Lifestyle Medicine Global Alliance.
ABOUT THE AMERICAN COLLEGE OF LIFESTYLE MEDICINE: ACLM is the medical professional society for those dedicated to the advancement and clinical practice of Lifestyle Medicine as the foundation of a transformed and sustainable health care system. More than a professional association, ACLM is a galvanized force for change. ACLM addresses the need for quality education and certification, supporting its members in their individual practices and in their collective mission to domestically and globally promote Lifestyle Medicine as the first treatment option, as opposed to a first option of treating symptoms and consequences with expensive, ever increasing quantities of pills and procedures. Learn more at http://www.lifestylemedicine.org.
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