Vol 18 2 Primary Care

AJLM CME/CE Article Quiz Volume 18, Issue 2

Learning Objectives:

  1. Define what an expert consensus statement is 
  2. Identify who the primary target audience of the Lifestyle Medicine expert consensus statement (ECS) 
  3. Recall important themes and topics covered in statements that reached consensus 
  4. State the frequency of measuring lifestyle medicine vital signs as stated in the consensus statement

“Lifestyle medicine is informed by an established, and rapidly growing, evidence-base of peer-reviewed research that includes systematic reviews, randomized trials, large cohort studies, and other scientific publications”

Evidence-base for Lifestyle Medicine
Statement that reached consensus.

American College of Lifestyle Medicine Expert Consensus Statement: Lifestyle Medicine for Optimal Outcomes in Primary Care

The United States (US) health care system is performing poorly for patients, clinicians, and the overall economy.15 In 2021, the US spent US$12,914 per person in health care costs—approximately 18% of the gross domestic product, which is the highest per capita spending compared to peer nations analyzed by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development.1,6 Concurrently, average life expectancy in the US has been decreasing since 2014, long before the COVID-19 pandemic, ranking at the bottom compared to reference countries.1,7 The US also leads in “excess” mortality; with avoidable deaths worsening three years after the COVID-19 pandemic began despite other countries showing lower mortality.1,8,9

The concerns just noted suggest that a new paradigm is needed for US health care, one with a foundation of lifestyle medicine (LM) addressing the root causes of chronic diseases that drive morbidity and mortality. LM is the evidence-based practice of engaging individuals and communities with 6 pillars of comprehensive lifestyle change (Table 1) that include healthy eating, physical activity, stress reduction, restorative sleep, positive social connections, and avoiding risky substances. Patients and physicians are often unaware of how LM can prevent, treat, or even reverse, many chronic diseases,10,11 including highly prevalent conditions like type 2 diabetes12 and coronary artery disease.13 Consequently, it is imperative to pursue strategies that encourage and support patients in transitioning to the health-promoting behavior patterns implicit in LM.