We’ve all been stressed right?
Be it at work, juggling family commitments, pressing deadlines or trying to get life done. There is a large body of evidence supporting how our bodies are not designed to meet the challenges of the modern environment: multitasking, competing deadlines, technology use, abnormal light, noise exposures for example.
Stress, has long lived in the professional treatment domain of psychology but the growing research base of exercise, diet, rest, sleep are proving to be also part of the treatment equation. You could consider this “lifestyle treatments” and this forming the basis of a rapidly growing field of work under the banner of Lifestyle Medicine.
In practical terms, Lifestyle Medicine bridges the gap between health promotion and clinical practice with a multidisciplinary, whole system approach to the chronic and lifestyle-related disease problem.
Lifestyle Medicine is a broad church of health professionals from GPs and medical specialists, allied health practitioners, public health physicians, educators, and researchers with a growing international association footprint.
Supporting the message and clinical utility of Lifestyle Medicine in Australia is The Australasian Society of Lifestyle Medicine (ASLM) which held its national 2018 conference in my home town of Brisbane.
You might make an assessment of a conference’s success by way of
As most conferences come and go, you can leave wondering whether you should have come or not. Well in my humble opinion, ASLM’s Lifestyle Medicine Conference 2018 was an absolute stellar event with high quality presentations, depth of research and a vigorous community mobilising the message of low cost, highly effective lifestyle interventions.
Prof Zoltan Sarnayai, Psychoneuroendocrinology discussed research into the microbiome and stress. Prof. Zoltan discussed how with chronic stress you observe structural changes in the brain’s neuro-structure
Furthermore, wiping out the gut flora in mice demonstrated neuro-biological changes
Prof. Felise Jacka from the Food and Mood Centre
In short, there was a strong research focus and importantly how to translate this into clinical and population interventions. The work of both Prof Felise and Prof. Zoltan assists in converting lab to field and also provides more light onto the subject of how the gut and brain are connected.
I had the pleasure to present on Day 3 to provide a case study observation of working with a client with cognitive decline, more on that soon.
So, stay tuned for more summaries of ASLM Lifestyle Medicine 2018 Conference in coming posts. .