Lifestyle Medicine: An Effective Approach to Hypertension Management

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Uncontrolled hypertension is the leading cause of adult mortality in the U.S. Currently, 116 million U.S. adults have uncontrolled hypertension contributing to 1,000 deaths per day. This equates to 46% of the adult population, or one out of every two adults (Kim et al. 2019). Uncontrolled hypertension is the number one underlying cause of mortality regardless of ethnicity, gender, location or where someone is receiving their healthcare (Kochanek et al. 2019). The current primary, or “gold standard” medical intervention to manage hypertension is to provide prescription anti-hypertensive medications. Yet according to the American College of Cardiology and the American Academy of Family Medicine this is only 24% effective at managing hypertension (ACC, 2017). This means that 76% of the time the gold standard treatment for hypertensive management is not effective. There is an alternative, one that for the last three decades, has proven to be far more effective at not only managing hypertension but in most cases reversing hypertension altogether (Mondala et al. 2019). A Lifestyle Medicine approach has been shown to be more clinically effective than the current, gold standard treatment (ACC, 2017). The purpose of this project is to provide training in the Lifestyle Medicine approach, while developing a cost-effective plan to provide the interventions which lead to positive outcomes of controlled, reduced or reversed hypertension. The mission of this project is to advance evidenced-based Lifestyle Medicine as a value-based specialty that transforms, redefines and sustains health by treating, reversing and preventing hypertensive disease. The vision is that initiation of a Lifestyle Medicine approach in one clinic would lead to two, then three and so on, so that Lifestyle Medicine would become the foundation of a transformed system of hypertensive disease management.
Submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree Doctor of Nursing Practice
Nursing, Alternative Medicine