Lifestyle Medicine 2016 in reflection

plant-based-foodThe feedback has been unanimous.  Lifestyle Medicine 2016 was THE best conference ever.   From the inspiring speakers to the fabulous (mostly plant-based) food, and our ever-entertaining Master of Ceremonies to the engaging mid-session activity breaks, I’m sure everyone who headed to Melbourne last weekend would agree that it was an event not to be missed.

delegatesOver three information-packed days, we heard from 48 speakers from eight countries, including an inspiring talk from guest speaker Dr Bob Brown, past leader of the Australian Greens, and the exciting announcement of the Lifestyle Medicine Global Alliance.

There was so much to take away but here are just a few things that stood out:

Dr Bob Brown – don’t get depressed, get active!

  • I gave up being a GP to be an environmentalist – the ultimate career in preventative medicine: Dr Bob Brown, highlighting the importance of the environment for our health.
  • Optimists are the ones moving forward: Dr Bob Brown on why he chooses to be optimistic rather than getting depressed on the state of our environment.
  • Bob Brown and Dr Caroline West

    50% of the world health burden is chronic disease: Prof Maximilian de Courten discussing moving prevention policies on chronic diseases forward in Australia.

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    Prof Maximilian de Courten on the policies needed for change

    The importance of gratitude – grateful people experience more positive emotions, enhanced wellbeing, more hope, less depression and anxiety, less envy and are more empathetic and forgiving, less materialistic: Paul Taylor presenting the findings of an integrated workplace wellbeing program on physical and mental health.

  • Everyone should be given the choice of lifestyle medicine: Dr George Guthrie (President, American

    Dr George Guthrie on the past, present and future of Lifestyle Medicine

    College of Lifestyle Medicine) discussing the past, present and future of lifestyle medicine.

  • We need to be looking at the cause of the cause of the cause of the cause: Dr Garry Egger discussing diabesity and metaflammation.
  • Walking for just 30 minutes per day reduces the risk of almost all chronic diseases – Emeritus Prof Mark Wahlqvist who told us “When you can’t walk you will wish you could, so walk”.
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    Prof Mark Wahlqvist with Prof Kerin O’Dea, A/Prof Felice Jacka and Prof Boyd Swinburn

    We need to look at the environment, not just individual health: Emeritus Prof Mark Wahlqvist discussing human ecology and health.

  • Could we be suffering from nature deficit disorders?: Emeritus Prof Mark Wahlqvist discussing human ecology and health and research showing the impact of access to green space on our health.
  • A comprehensive lifestyle modification program incorporating a plant-based diet, physical activity, stress management and spiritual health can significantly reduce chronic disease risk factors, even when led by community trained volunteers: Dr Paul Rankin discussing the results of the Complete Health Improvement program (CHIP).
  • Dr Wayne Dysinger on diabetes reversal

    Motion creates emotion: Dr Darren Morton (with help from the Wiggles) discussing the impact of lifestyle change on emotional health.

  • How we feel affects whether we fly or fall: Dr Darren Morton discussing his Live More! project and its impact on emotional wellbeing.
  • Type 2 diabetes can be reversed if we intervene (with lifestyle changes) early – this should be our goal: Prof Wayne Dysinger.
  • Prof Kerin O’Dea on the hunter gatherer

    The ideal intervention prevents multiple risk factors. Lifestyle change is this intervention: Prof Barbora de Courten discussing low cost interventions for the prevention of cardiometabolic risk factors and disease.

  • The power of lifestyle change: Prof Kerin O’Dea discussing her research showing that returning to a traditional hunter-gatherer lifestyle can reverse type 2 diabetes in Australian Aborigines.
  • Dalai Lama quoteThe benefits of meditation: Emeritus Professor Peter Smith discussing contemplative healthcare and the use of meditation to reduce stress and improve situational awareness and attention for health professionals. Loved this quote he shared from the Dalai Lama…

Dr Caroline West, strumming up the fun

And finally the power of dancing, singing, laughter and the ukulele thanks to Caroline West, Cameron McDonald, the Bee Gees and the Rolling Gallstones….or was that the Healthy BMIs?

For those who missed out on Melbourne 2016, the good news is that Lifestyle Medicine 2017 will be held 15-17 September in Sydney and you can register now to take advantage of super early bird pricing. And for a limited time you can use the conference promo code PASSIONATE for an extra passionate supporter discount.

You can also now get online access to videos of plenary lectures, concurrent workshops and panel discussions from Lifestyle Medicine 2016.  Here’s the program and speakers.  That’s over 90 videos totalling 33 hours of conference sessions delivered over three days at the Grand Hyatt, Melbourne, 4-6 November, 2016. Get access now.

More Lifestyle Medicine wrap up:

By | 2017-01-09T13:23:57+00:00 November 10th, 2016|0 Comments

About the Author:

Profile photo of Dr Kate Marsh
Dr Kate Marsh is an Advanced Accredited Practicing Dietitian and Credentialed Diabetes Educator working in private practice in Sydney. She is chair of the Australian Diabetes Educators Association (ADEA) Clinical Practice Committee, the convenor of the Dietitians Association of Australia (DAA) National PCOS and Vegetarian Interest Groups and co-convenor of the DAA National Diabetes Interest Group. Kate is on the editorial advisory group for the Australian Diabetes Educator, the editorial board for Diabetic Management Journal, and is a board member for Diabetes Counselling Online. She is co-author of The Low GI Guide to Managing PCOS, The Low GI Vegetarian Cookbook, Low GI Gluten-Free Living and The Bump to Baby Diet, and a regular contributor to Diabetic Living Magazine and The Limbic.

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