HEARTFUL LIVING: PROGRAM FOR IMPROVING HEALTH & LIFESTYLE THROUGH SELF-AWARENESS (Invited Lecture)
Anand Chockalingam, M.D., University of Missouri, Columbia, MO, USA
Heartful living is a cardiac wellness program that simplifies yoga principles to expand its applicability to all ages and abilities. Self-awareness is the core of Yoga teachings but has been difficult to incorporate into modern medicine. Mankind is transitioning from a hectic high-pressure lifestyle to an uncertain future where artificial intelligence is poised to change our way of existence. While we encourage yoga postures and exercise, we also emphasize the changes have to be natural, from within, to be sustainable. Current cardiology practice typically addresses medical and procedural management once coronary artery disease is established. Our program is novel and unique in that the primary focus is enhancing self-awareness. We strongly believe that this is a skill that can be nurtured and a way of life at the same time. We encourage mindfulness, meditation, tailored exercise regimens and participating wholeheartedly in daily activities. Participants also experiment with prayer, gratitude, volunteering as well as community activities that improve their sense of meaning in life. Whole food based nutritious diet is emphasized. We track improvements in lifestyle and healthy behavior telephonically and have family participate in the program. Cardiac and general health will improve if people recognize the value of meaningful living based on these holistic principles.