Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of death in Australia and although previously considered to primarily affect men, more women than men die from CVD in Australia each year. The World Health Organisation predicts that over 180 million people worldwide have diabetes, with 90 per cent of cases being type 2, and estimate that this number will more than double by the year 2030. At MHHG, we recognize that these conditions are largely preventable and screening for these is an integral part of our holistic approach.
Our herbalists and naturopaths are trained in evaluating the risk of these highly prevalent and preventable conditions. Reducing the risk of CVD and Type 2 diabetes is greatly centred on lifestyle factors and addressing modifiable risk factors. These include dietary modifications, weight control or weight loss, regular physical activity, smoking cessation, alcohol in moderation, adequate sleep, diabetes management and stress reduction. Through consultation we thoroughly assess individual and family history, modifiable risk factors, and use reliable and acceptable tests to evaluate risk. Patients are encouraged to adopt specific and individualized lifestyle changes that modify their risk of disease or disease progression. Herbal and/or nutritional interventions based on current scientific research may be incorporated into treatment, particularly where there is evidence of current CVD-related complaints, such as hypertension and dyslipidaemia.
Dietary change and incorporation of exercise are the first-line in the management of type 2 diabetes and may reduce or delay the need for pharmacotherapy. Our practitioners appreciate that dietary and lifestyle changes must be maintained for life and we therefore devise changes within the scope of the individual, considering all aspects of their daily lives.
Acupuncture can also be of benefit for cardiovascular patients as a part of their overall health management. Acupuncture can increase the microcirculation in peripheral tissue and in the brain. It has also been shown to improve physical function and movement in patients who have suffered stroke.