In some ways we think the announcement about dietary lifestyle from the American College of Lifestyle Medicine is visionary, promoting whole foods not only to treat but even reverse many of the chronic illnesses that reduce the quality of life for many Americans and raid personal savings as well as US Gross Domestic Product. In other ways, it seems surreal that such centuries-old basic notions are just now coming to light in an advanced 21st century nation.
The current sick care system must transform and embrace the need for a holistic healthcare approach. Nations can no longer afford the sick care approach. Physicians no longer want to practice confined, conventional medicine. Patients do not want to be patients. It is time to focus on well-being, giving physicians more education and treatment paths beyond prescriptions and procedures. It is time to treat patients as humans who want fulfilling lives and who need help / coaching beyond the clinic. It is time to recognize the value of complementary and integrative therapists who want to be part of a coordinated care team where the person is central.
The American College of Lifestyle Medicine (ACLM) has announced its issuance of an official position statement on diet for the treatment and potential reversal of lifestyle-related chronic disease. The statement reads: “For the treatment, reversal and prevention of lifestyle-related chronic disease, the ACLM recommends an eating plan based predominantly on a variety of minimally processed vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds.
”A body of evidence-based research now exists on the efficacy of this type of diet.
ACLM President George Guthrie, MD, MPH, FACLM, said “Medicine is supposed to restore health and wholeness to those who are who are sick. For chronic lifestyle-related diseases the best treatment is intensive lifestyle change. Science and experience are teaching us that effective treatment is available, and reversibility is imminently plausible in many cases. With this statement the American College of Lifestyle Medicine is pointing patients and clinicians in the right direction.”
“ACLM is the professional medical association that stands behind what I, as a physician, chef, and nutrition scientist, know is an evidence-based diet that can prevent, treat and even reverse common, chronic, lifestyle-related diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, obesity, hypertension and more,” said ACLM Board Member Michelle Hauser, MD, MD, MS, MPA, Chef. “The science is clear that a predominantly whole food, plant-based diet rich in vegetables, fruits, legumes, minimally-processed whole grains, nuts and seeds truly is food as medicine.”