General

How do we counsel our patients with regards to lifestyle intervention ??? Will it be successful ??

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30 Oct 2016 - General
 

I am sure a lot of healthcare professionals have encountered the challenging scenario to counsel patients to change their sedentary lifestyle. The patients cohort with metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes mellitus, hypercholesterolemia, fatty liver disease, history of ischeamic heart disease, increased body mass index or obesity, and etc will require regular exercise and diet intervention to reduce their cardiovascular risk and risk of other medical related complications. It is usually very easy for us to say to the patients that they need to reduce the weight by exercising and diet plan. But, most of the time, patients will not follow our advise. I totally agree that such a simple medical intervention is indeed not simple or easy to do. Do you encountered such a scenario as well ??? What will be the best way to counsel our patients with regards to lifestyle intervention ???

There is a thing called motivational interviewing that we learned in medical school that seems to be very effective when counseling patients. Here is a Wikipedia article that explains the concept of motivational interviewing that I found after a quick google search. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motivational_interviewing
Motivational interviewing per se is a technique used by psychiatrists to overcome situations where people who are having psychological disturbances needs to be interviewed ...
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I think the best way to counsel patients is to present the benefits that will be incurred from the prescribed lifestyle modifications. Also it is reasonable to set feasible and reasonable goals for the patient. For example, with regards to weight loss, patients should be counselled that gradual weight loss it better than drastic weight loss. An initial target of 1lb per week is realistic. However, patients should also be given a warning that weight changes may not be evident right away because o...
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