“Health risk behaviors are unhealthy behaviors you can change. Four of these health risk behaviors—lack of exercise or physical activity, poor nutrition, tobacco use, and drinking too much alcohol—cause much of the illness, suffering, and early death related to chronic diseases and conditions.” —Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
As a natural complement to the practice of Family Medicine, Lifestyle Medicine is about optimizing and maintaining health. Some people, when facing a medical condition, are content to treat with medicine. This is an acceptable choice and, in some cases, the best choice. Some, however, would like to go the extra step, working to avoid the medical condition altogether or to minimize the standard medical treatment they require.
To do this we focus on developing healthy habits in one or more of the following areas:
- Stress Management
So what happens during the Lifestyle Medicine visit?
Plan for a 1.5-2 hour appointment. This allows us to get to know your personal needs and help you to formulate your primary goals. For example:
- Lose weight without strenuous exercise
- Reduce pain and increase flexibility
- Maximize your physical endurance
- Decrease the medications you need
- Lower your risks of future disease and disability
- Or, something else entirely
Then, together, we will design your initial unique treatment plan.
During your 30-minute follow-up sessions and telephone consults, we continue to incorporate other realistic changes that will further improve your overall health and provide you with the best possible chances for success.
Other programs are available to maximize your results:
- Group medical visits if you best learn with group interaction.
- Shop-with-a-Doc where Dr. McCleskey or her nurse guides group members through the pitfalls of advertising gimmicks at the local grocery store to reinforce healthy shopping habits.
- Coffee Chat for a casual and informative exchange about a relevant health topic.
- Referrals to ancillary specialties such as physical therapy or nutrition science may be made.
- Ever wonder what your doctor does to improve her own fitness? Consider joining her for a short-term exploration (4-6 classes) of different avenues to move more.