Lifestyle Advice by Acupuncturists Contributes to UK Healthcare

Lifestyle advice by acupuncturists contributes to UK healthcare. A survey by the University of Southampton of 352 traditional acupuncturists, suggests their work is supporting key UK public health targets for promoting healthy lifestyles. Four key health behaviours – diet, physical activity, smoking and alcohol consumption – are now established as primary causes of ill health in the UK. Large scale surveys have shown patients report making health behaviour changes as a result of complementary medical encounters. Usage of complementary medicine is associated with a belief that health is a result of personal behaviour that may include lifestyle.

This was the first nationwide survey of UK acupuncturists and their provision of lifestyle and behaviour change advice. Almost 58% of most recent patient visits included some such support, rising to 92% for chronic conditions in particular. Physical activity and dietary changes were most widely the targets, followed by sleep hygiene, alcohol and smoking.

(Lifestyle and health behaviour change support in traditional acupuncture: a mixed method survey study of reported practice (UK). BMC Complementary Medicine & Therapies, 21 September 2022.)