A Wellness Program for Cancer Survivors and Caregivers: Developing an Integrative Pilot Program with Exercise, Nutrition, and Complementary Medicine

Mark Stoutenberg, Alyssa Sogor, Kristopher Arheart, Stacy E. Cutrono, Julie Kornfeld

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

The Integrative Wellness Program (IWP) at the University of Miami Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center (SCCC) sought to provide integrative wellness education to cancer patients, survivors, and caregivers by offering instruction in exercise, nutrition, and complementary and alternative medicine. The objective of this study was to assess the impact of the IWP on the overall wellness of the individuals participating in the program. Three different 10-week versions of the IWP were conducted over a 1-year period. Each session focused on a different wellness topic presented through interactive lectures and applied activities. A series of self-report questionnaires were administered at baseline and again at the completion of the program to assess improvements in physical activity levels, dietary habits, sleep hygiene, and quality of life. Participants were generally older, Caucasian, female, had higher levels of education, and still currently receiving treatment. Significant changes were observed in two measures: Starting the Conversation (−2.0 ± 2.40, p =.037) and the Sticking To It subscale of the Self-Efficacy and Eating Habits Survey (1.7 ± 1.22, p =.0013). A trend for improvement in the Reducing Fat subscale of the Self-Efficacy Eating Habits (0.44 ± 0.60, p =.056) was also observed. Participant satisfaction surveys indicated high levels of satisfaction and applicability of the material presented. The significant improvements detected related to dietary habits, combined with the responses from the participant satisfaction surveys, suggest that the IWP was well received and can positively impact the overall wellness of cancer patients, survivors, and their caregivers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)47-54
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Cancer Education
Volume31
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016

Keywords

  • Cancer
  • Integrative wellness
  • Nutrition
  • Physical activity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Oncology

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