Take Your Lifestyle Medicine Daily

Take Your Lifestyle Medicine Daily

A lot of people are confused when you talk about lifestyle medicine. Lifestyle medicine if it is allowed to proceed will revolutionise health throughout the world and this is not a hyperbole, it is fact. From the early 1950’s onwards medical 

Lifestyle Medi Logoresearchers knew they could prevent a huge number of what is today called chronic disease. In Australia the fastest growing industry, and the largest is health. The fastest growing section is in the aged care and homeless area, hostels etc. The largest employer of healthcare workers in Australia is hospitals. In total healthcare employs 11.8% of all Australian workers, it is much bigger than the mining industry and if you added in all of the people employed in making pharmaceuticals/nutraceuticals it would be huge. Australians spent 121.4 billion dollars on health in 2009-10 this amounted to 9.4% of total spending on all goods and services known as gross domestic product (GDP) http://www.aihw.gov.au/australias-health/2012/spending-on-health/#c1

Chronic Disease

Over the past three decades chronic disease has emerged as Australia’s, and the developed world’s worst health nightmare, unlike diseases caused by microbes (bacteria and viruses) drugs do not cure chronic disease, drugs merely treat these diseases, at least that has been the case up until now. In Australia seven (7) out of every ten (10) people attending a doctors clinic are going there because they have a chronic disease and the numbers are increasing.

Enter Type Two Diabetes

At the 1988 Banting Lectures Dr Gerald Reaven gave a lecture on a cluster of symptoms that patients, attending his clinic, were now presenting with, he called it Syndrome X. A couple of medical doctors were quick to seize the moment and wrote a book on Syndrome X. Unfortunately for them, soon after it’s discovery Syndrome X had a name change to Metabolic Syndrome because of it’s association with metabolism. Metabolic Syndrome if it is not corrected by lifestyle will lead to type 2 diabetes (Diabetes Mellitus 2).

Every 5 minutes in Australia someone is diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and it can be prevented and reversed without drugs (Keryn O’Dea 1983, Dean Ornish) and a host of other researchers.

Diabetes 2 Is Caused By Low Grade Systemic Inflammation

Type 2 diabetes is characterised by low grade systemic inflammation that invades all of the bodies systems and insulin resistance. Without preaching the ABC’s of type 2 diabetes it is enough to say that weight loss is your greatest friend in reducing insulin resistance and allowing the body to return to normal.

What Is Lifestyle Medicine

Lifestyle medicine is an emerging medicine, it will be a speciality of mainstream medicine at this point in time it is being taught to medical and allied health practitioners, I am a Naturopath (BNat, ND) and it has been officially opened up now for Naturopaths and Herbal Medicine practitioners to do the postgraduate courses – Grad Cert, Grad Diploma and Masters Degrees. I think Australian Naturopaths would do well in Lifestyle Medicine because of their training, particularly their understanding of nutrition and prevention. In America only Registered Doctors can do the Lifestyle Medicine Specialty. America has a different system to us all doctors whether it is Osteopathy (DO), Chiropractic (DC), Naturopathy (ND) or Medicine (MD) they are done at Master Degree level, but called doctor, after completing a Bachelor Degree in an acceptable course that gives the pre entry units of study. This degree is emerging in Australia now in some Universities but the old degree Bachelor of Medicine will be around for a long time yet, same with Bachelor of Naturopathy.

According to Dr David L Katz  President of the American College of Lifestyle Medicine Naturopaths are ideally suited to specialise in Lifestyle Medicine so I don’t know why they would not be here. Sure the Americans do a Masters Degree in Naturopathy and Medicine and we predominantly do Bachelor Degrees in Medicine/Naturopathy and never have I heard of anyone saying a Bachelor of Medicine was not a high enough degree to practice medicine.

Currently 70% of all doctors visits throughout the western world are for chronic disease, each year we get fatter on average so chronic disease is not expected to slow down at this point, it will become the biggest killer of humans of all time. Years ago on IMG_1262HealthCastle’s Forum I jokingly proposed a new diet to stop obesity. I called it The Eat Less Move More Diet and stated that it would take the world by storm and cure obesity and the chronic diseases caused by it. Seek out practitioners that have studied lifestyle medicine at a high level rather than taking your advice from glossy magazines with paid sports people who may or may not know what they are talking about giving the advice.

In 1948 some researchers in an Indian component factory discovered that when humans work in an activity restricted environment the mechanism that governs hunger become inefficient, Ghrelin keeps screaming for food but Leptin never turns off  hunger.

Obesity has now been declared a disease. Doctors in America claimed that by medicalising obesity it would get the attention it required but I think they meant it would get the drugs they wanted to sell, and keep selling. We live in an obesogenic environment where we encounter food at every turn, we all have enough money to buy whatever food we desire and we don’t get enough exercise from our work environment anymore.

Obesity will get the medical attention it requires but obesity is not caused by a lack of pharmaceutical drugs, it is caused by an imbalance of energy in the diet. We do not burn up the number of kilojoules that we eat. Obesity is strongly linked to depression and anti- depressive drugs cause weight gain so it becomes a catch 22 situation. Diets high in protein or carbohydrates, particularly high fibre carbohydrate reduce feelings of hunger are excellent diets to reduce weight. When combined with sensible levels of activity they are even more effective, both carbohydrate and protein contain 4 (four) calories per gram of food- 4 calories=16.72 kilojoules.Mediterranean_Diet-1

Choose an interesting walk and get your lifestyle medicine daily, IMG_1278-1don’t be frightened to eat but learn to love the food that loves you back. There is nothing wrong with joining a gym but it is not the only way you can get your activity requirement. A word you will hear more often in the near future is mitochondria and these are the energy factories of all the cells on planet earth, in fact we wouldn’t be here now if these bacteria had not become an integral part of our cells. The Biologists are still debating which cell ate the first mitochondria and against incredible odds they both survived to enable humans to go on and create a huge civilisation.



Posted in Lifestyle Medicine and tagged , , , .

My health qualifications:
Psychology, Homoeopathy(Never Used),Herbal Medicine, Nutrition(HSA)
Swedish and Remedial Massage 1983,Homoeopathy 1993(Never Used), Herbal Medicine, Nutritional Science 1981, Naturopathy 1991(HSA)
Bachelor of Naturopathy 2003 (NIHS)
Master of Clinical Science - Lifestyle Medicine 2013 Southern Cross University (SCU).
Association Membership
Australian Traditional Medicine Society (ATMS)
Australian Natural Therapists Association (ANTA)
Australian Register Of Naturopaths And Herbalists (ARONAH)
Founding Member of Australasian Society Of Lifestyle Medicine (ASLM)

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