South African Family Practice

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Healthy lifestyle interventions in general practice: Part 1: An introduction to lifestyle and diseases of lifestyle

EW Derman, DN Patel, CJ Nossel, MP Schwellnus


Poor lifestyle choices including physical inactivity, adverse nutrition and tobacco use are strongly associated with heart disease, diabetes, respiratory disease and cancer. These four diseases are responsible for over 50% of mortality worldwide. Yet lifestyle intervention is underemphasised in the undergraduate training of doctors and other health professionals. This article reviews the lifestyle factors related to chronic non-communicable disease and suggests small but meaningful interventions for general practitioners to incorporate into daily practice. The upcoming series to be published in Family Practice regarding “lifestyle modification in chronic disease states” is introduced.

South African Journal of Family Practice Vol. 50 (4) 2008: pp.6-12

AJOL African Journals Online