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Is "Exercise Is Medicine" Working?

From eNewsletter 4/1/2019

DID YOU KNOW that chronic urinary tract infections in postmenopausal women could be due to estrogen imbalance or lack of estrogen and/or progesterone? If you suspect that hormones could be an issue, test your hormone levels, including Estradiol, Estrone, Estriol, Progesterone, Testosterone, DHEA, FSH, and LH. We prefer salivary as opposed to blood testing.


Steve and Bonnie: In 2007, the "Exercise Is Medicine" initiative was launched by the American College of Sports Medicine and American Medical Association with the goal of making "physical activity assessment and exercise prescription a standard part of the disease prevention and treatment paradigm for all patients." 

Since then, several large health care organizations have adopted physical activity as a "vital sign" that is routinely assessed and documented in the electronic health record.

Despite these efforts, patient counseling on physical fitness continues to be underutilized in primary care, according to a new study in Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine

Astonishingly, the researchers state that only 1 in 3 adults report having received counseling on physical fitness or exercise from their physician in the past year, with similar rates among children.

So why has this initiative been so wildly underwhelming for a first line therapy that, along with optimal eating style, should be discussed at every visit?

  1. Doctors don't get paid for prescribing exercise. Just as we reported last week about discussion to reimburse patients and doctors for healthy food prescriptions, the same should happen for exercise prescriptions. This is a no-brainer.

  2. For the doctors and health professionals that do prescribe exercise, many are uneducated in how to individualize it for their patients. General advice breeds noncompliance.

What if your health professional could tell you exactly what type of exercise is perfect for you, your injury risk and how to prevent it, how well you respond to exercise, and how much you need to be fit, all based upon your genetic makeup?

Not only is this possible, it's something that we have been doing for our clients since the beginning of the year! All you have to do is get your genome mapped by 23andme and we will take care of the rest. Ask Steve for details.


Steve: Researchers reporting in Current Biology have made the surprising discovery that the number of calories people burn while at rest changes with the time of day...this article is reserved for NCI Well Connect Members. You can get this article by signing up here. You can get our free eNewsletter by signing up at the top of our website.


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