Submitted to: American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine
Publication Type: Review Article
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/1/2007
Publication Date: 11/1/2007
Citation: O'Neil, C.E., Nicklas, T.A. 2007. Relationship between diet/physical activity and health. American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine. 1(6):457-481. Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: Obesity and four of the leading causes of death - heart disease, cancer, stroke, and type 2 diabetes mellitus - are related to lifestyle. The combination of a healthy weight, prudent diet, and daily physical activity clearly plays a role in primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention of these and other chronic diseases. Because nearly 65% of the adult population is overweight or obese, weight loss and maintenance are central to this review article. Improved lipid profiles, blood pressure, insulin sensitivity, and euglycemia are associated with weight loss or a normal body weight; thus, maintaining a healthy weight is a universal recommendation for health. The methods for improving lifestyle described in the section on obesity include assessing nutritional status and stages of change of the client, setting realistic goals, eating a diet high in fruits and vegetables with low-fat sources of dairy and protein, and achieving appropriate physical activity levels. The importance of physicians discussing weight with clients and vice versa is stressed. The common features of lifestyle-related diseases make them amenable to similar lifestyle interventions.