Lifestyle care for transformation of medical care using an early life course approach

Sofie K.M. van Zundert, Lenie van Rossem, Sam Schoenmakers, Régine P.M. Steegers-Theunissen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/Letter to the editorAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


It is well known that a healthy lifestyle plays a key role in maintaining reproductive and general health, and preventing lifestyle-related diseases throughout the entire life course. Lifelong health is shaped during the preconception period and the first 1000 days of life. The importance of a healthy lifestyle during these periods can be emphasized by introducing the concept of the early life course, which covers from 100 days before conception until 1000 days thereafter. Although awareness of the benefits of a healthy lifestyle has grown, adherence is disappointing and the implementation of lifestyle interventions in medical care is scarce. Hence, we are convinced that now is the right time to turn the tide. The focus should shift from cure to prevention and promotion of health. The new concept of lifestyle care includes lifestyle interventions that support the adoption of a healthy lifestyle to optimize health and prevent lifestyle-related diseases, including subfertility and adverse pregnancy outcomes. In this paper, we advocate for the implementation of lifestyle care in medical care, define the early life course, elaborate on lifestyle care as part of lifestyle medicine, and provide examples towards the successful implementation of blended lifestyle care, which can be more widely implemented and transform medical care.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)847-850
Number of pages4
JournalReproductive BioMedicine Online
Issue number5
Early online date10 Aug 2022
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was funded by the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology of the Erasmus MC, University Medical Center, Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Reproductive Healthcare Ltd.


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