Lifestyle medicine is a new concept in Western medicine. It has emerged in response to the epidemic of ‘lifestyle diseases’, such as heart disease, obesity and type 2 diabetes, that are killing tens of millions of people every year. These deaths are the outcome of unhealthy behaviours including lack of exercise, poor diets, smoking, toxic stress and sleep debt. Lifestyle medicine is being proposed as an addition to existing treatments. It will aim to change people’s behaviours to choose exercise, nutritious diets and other activities that promote health.

Making some healthy choices is a good plan but it’s not the full solution. Lifestyle diseases arise from a multitude of intermeshed factors. These go beyond diet and exercise. The way you work, respond to social or family obligations, and whether or not you live with a strong sense of identity and purpose can also contribute to the development of lifestyle diseases. This is holistic lifestyle medicine territory and right up the alley of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM).

TCM prototyped the original lifestyle medicine centuries ago. It was a way of living aligned with the natural cycles that boosted organ health to prevent illness and promote success, health and happiness. The lifestyle never made it out of China and is now mostly forgotten, even there, but we still have the same organs, we live on the same planet, are subject to the same natural forces, and we face the same personal challenges that we did centuries ago, and the lifestyle still works. It’s time to revive the secrets of this ancient art of living.

The chi-cycle lifestyle

I discovered references to this lifestyle as a student of Chinese medicine and, realising the potential of a healing lifestyle for contemporary culture in which our lifestyles are killing us, I hunted down the old texts. I experimented, researched and repurposed what I found to factor in new technologies, industries and lifestyle changes, to finally create the chi-cycle lifestyle. This is a simple, easy to follow daily routine, a way of living for the 21st century that builds health and happiness.

It’s not a theory, or a new fad. It is based on the original lifestyle medicine that was tried and tested over centuries in China. It is an intelligent lifestyle. It maximises the benefit of everything you do by using your time and your energy (chi) efficiently. TCM is all about learning by living it. I’ve followed the chi-cycle lifestyle for over 20 years, I wrote the first contemporary book on it, and have used it as a therapeutic tool for thousands of clients. It works. It naturally eliminates symptoms and builds health. It is the antidote to lifestyle disease.

Make your health simple

Having said that, Western research is inching ever closer to what TCM mapped out centuries ago. At the time of writing, for example, nobel prizes were awarded for discoveries about the circadian rhythm (sometimes called the body clock), and studies in chronomedicine which investigates the role of time in health and healing, were identifying organ clocks throughout the body. You can research these areas yourself, but if you’ve got a clock, and a desire to improve your health, the chi-cycle is the simple ready-to-go solution

An overload of information has turned health into rocket science. If you have a lifestyle disease such as obesity, heart disease or type 2 diabetes, or are worried that you will develop one, or concerned that you may develop dementia, cancer, Alzheimer’s, or IBS, arthritis and other inflammatory conditions, you’ve probably found lots of publications, blogs and websites offering fatalistic or contradictory information. This creates fear and confusion.

Health has become so complicated nobody knows where to start. There’s a new diet every week, and new cures, new diseases, new drugs and new names for symptoms. In TCM conditions such as diabetes, obesity and heart disease are the outcome of living disconnected from the natural order. This creates organ imbalances and a progression of symptoms. The solution is the chi-cycle lifestyle. It cuts through all the confusion. It creates order from chaos. It is a daily routine that provides structure, and a solid basis to build your health on step by step and day by day.

Western medicine sees unhealthy lifestyle choices as the cause of lifestyle disease, but I see them as uninformed choices. If you understand the internal organ havoc you create when you live disconnected from any natural order, you can make informed choices. Line up your key daily activities with the natural rhythm, after a while unhealthy habits fall away. Your behaviour will naturally change. You’ll automatically start making healthy choices. It is not something you have to think about, it is internally driven.

Your organs build your health and happiness

Your organs hold the secrets. They can reverse the progression of lifestyle diseases and kick off a new health and happiness progression for you. Each two hours one of your organs ‘clocks-on’ and runs a specific set of tasks. If you get your lifestyle aligned with this by doing normal daily things, like eating, working and sleeping, at certain times and in the way that they are most effective, your organs can fight disease and build health.

In TCM your organs are not purely functional. They can deliver you the goods physically, emotionally and metaphysically. You will wake each morning in optimum health feeling refreshed and energised, full of vitality and ready for the challenges of the day. You’ll look and feel youthful, hold your ground but hold no grudges. You’ll follow your destiny, make the world a better place and inspire everyone around you to do the same. Find out how to follow the chi-cycle lifestyle to prevent lifestyle disease in my book Clock On To Health.