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Wellness Programs Target More Than Weight Loss

Stephanie Yamkovenko


When a 2006 study found people with schizophrenia die an average of 25 years younger than the general population,1 it was a "huge wake-up call for mental health providers," said Catana Brown, Ph.D., OTR/L. "We were seeing people in their 30s die of heart disease. It was just really shocking." People with mental health conditions are at risk of premature death from untreated chronic illnesses like obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. Additionally, forty-two percent of adults with mental health disorders are obese.2


Colton, C. W., and R. W. Manderscheid. 2006. Congruencies in Increased Mortality Rates, Years of Potential Life Lost, and Causes of Death Among Public Mental Health Clients in Eight States. Preventing Chronic Disease, 3(2), 1–14. SAMHSA–HRSA Center for Integrated Health Solutions. 2012. Research Review of Health Promotion Programs for People with Serious Mental Illness. Retrieved from Brown, C., J. Goetz, A. Van Sciver, D. Sullivan, and E. Hamera. 2006. A Psychiatric Rehabilitation Approach to Weight Loss. Psychiatric Rehabilitation Journal, 29(4), 267–273. Margaret Swarbrick. 2012. Wellness and aging. Words of Wellness Newsletter, 5(9), 3–4.

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Contributed on 10/11/2012

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