An alternative to taking pills

June 19, 2015

Dr-Fain-Granthon-WEB

After his cholesterol measured high, Felix Granthon didn’t ask his doctor for the simplest solution.

“I knew I could take medication — but I don’t like medication,” Granthon, 72, said. “I wanted to know what else I could do besides take pills.”

So Granthon and his wife, Carla, and their family physician, Harold Fain, MD, Assistant Professor of Community Medicine, created a healthier lifestyle plan that included nutritious foods and regular physical activity. Six months later, Granthon’s cholesterol level had dropped by 35 percent, and Carla’s had fallen 28 percent to normal levels.

Learn more:

UNTHSC
Graduate Certificate
in Lifestyle Health

This holistic style of patient-centered care is the focus of a new Graduate Certificate in Lifestyle Health offered by UNT Health Science Center. The online program, designed by a multidisciplinary team, provides health care practitioners and UNTHSC students the tools needed to incorporate evidence-based lifestyle interventions into their practices for management and prevention of chronic illnesses, said Dr. Claire Peel, Vice Provost and Dean of the School of Health Professions.

“Up to 80 percent of chronic diseases can be prevented by what you eat, how much you weigh, how much you exercise and if you don’t smoke,” said Dr. Fain, who practices at a JPS Health Network clinic and serves as a program instructor. “But the truth is that in school, providers spend little time, if any, learning how to help a patient make these critical lifestyle changes.”

Health care providers often lack time for discussions of lifestyle health with patients, Peel said. The application-based program helps providers quickly assess whether a patient is ready to make a lifestyle change and offers a structured, efficient way to empower patients to make healthy adjustments in their diet, physical activity, stress management, smoking and sleep habits.

“This goes far beyond ‘eat more vegetables’ and instead offers evidence- based strategies that really make a difference in someone’s quality of life,” said Debbie Gillespie, a Registered Dietitian and the program’s director.

The benefits of changing one’s lifestyle far outweigh the effort required, the Granthons said.

“We feel great,” Carla Granthon said. “All we needed was someone to help us.”

Lic Fc
Dr. John Licciardone named UNT System Regents Professor

By Steven Bartolotta For over three decades, Dr. John C. Licciardone has been making a difference. His research is world renowned, his writing has been published in national and international journals and his impact on the Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine has been considerable. In recogni...Read more

Sep 18, 2019

Missing Fc
NamUs creates division to aid victims’ families

By Jan Jarvis   When a loved one goes missing, families face unimaginable challenges, from coping with the disappearance to finding the person is deceased and then navigating the complex process of bringing them home. To help families navigate the trauma related to a loved one’s disa...Read more

Sep 13, 2019

Dennis T Fc
Improved surveillance of e-cigarette injuries needed, study finds

By Alex Branch   A School of Public Health alumnus and a current faculty member have received national media attention for research that concluded the number of injuries caused by electronic cigarettes is probably drastically underreported. Amid increased attention given to the safety ...Read more

Sep 13, 2019

Tracey Fc
SPH researcher finds all positives in new Texas over 21 smoking law

By Sally Crocker Like the significant impact seen with age 21 drinking laws, states like Texas now have an opportunity to make a big difference in keeping other harmful substances out of the hands of teens, says a UNT Health Science Center public health researcher. Tracey Barnett, PhD, Ass...Read more

Sep 9, 2019