Lifestyle Medicine Residency Curriculum

Lifestyle Medicine

promotes behaviors and habits that lead to better heath

Lifestyle Medicine Residency Curriculum

Welcome to a powerful approach for preventing, managing, and reversing chronic health conditions through lifestyle and behavioral changes.

Our Lifestyle Medicine Residency Curriculum, the first in North Carolina, builds on MAHEC’s tradition of delivering innovative medical education and whole-person care. It also takes advantage of Asheville’s abundance of outdoor sports and recreation, parks and greenways, local farms, and wellness practices.


Lifestyle medicine focuses on six key areas:

  • healthful eating
  • physical activity
  • stress management
  • improving sleep
  • avoiding toxic substances
  • forming and maintaining relationships

This evidence-based approach provides physicians with powerful tools to partner with patients to improve overall health and well-being. By preventing, treating, and even reversing conditions such as diabetes, hypertension and high cholesterol, Lifestyle Medicine can make a significant impact on health and well-being across the lifespan.


Residents integrate Lifestyle Medicine principles while caring for their own panel of patients. They may also participate in our dedicated Healthy Living Clinic within the MAHEC Family Health Center. Within the HLC, we are developing group medical visits to help patients initiate and sustain lifestyle changes for better health. We are continuing to partner with local organizations to be a part of their wellness groups. Residents also have access to national trainings in shared medical appointments for Lifestyle Medicine.


The LMRC is currently being incorporated in our family medicine residency curriculum. Any MAHEC resident is eligible to participate. Residents outside of family medicine can work with the LMRC director and their residency program director to incorporate the LMRC into their schedule. The LMRC includes 40 hours of didactics and 60 hours of applied activities. Over the course of 2 to 3 years, residents counsel patients on the tenets of Lifestyle Medicine, logging 400 instances of this to develop competency in each domain. Residents also participate in an intensive therapeutic lifestyle change program to ensure they understand and experience the benefits of lifestyle medicine.

Residents have opportunities to work with lifestyle medicine experts and can opt in to participating with the Blue Zones Project in Brevard, NC in partnership with the Pisgah Health Foundation, our program partner.

Upon completion of the curriculum, residents will qualify to sit for the American Board of Lifestyle Medicine certification exam.



  • Introduction to Lifestyle Medicine
  • Role of Physician Health and the Physician’s Personal Health
  • Nutrition Science, Assessment and Prescription
  • Physical Activity Science and Prescription
  • Sleep Health Science and Interventions
  • Managing Tobacco Cessation and Other Toxic Exposures
  • Fundamentals of Health Behavioral Change
  • Key Clinical Processes in Lifestyle Medicine
  • Emotional and Mental Well-Being Assessment and Interventions
  • The Role of Connectedness and Positive Psychology

Ginger Poulton, MD, DipABLM
Lifestyle Medicine Residency
Curriculum Director

Lisa Reed, MD, DipABLM
Lifestyle Medicine Faculty

Fred Stichel, RD
Registered Dietitian



You can learn more in this video introduction with our program faculty and on the American College of Lifestyle Medicine website. If you have additional questions, please contact us!

Natalie Smith
Program Administrator



MAHEC is committed to creating an equitable and inclusive place to work, learn, and receive care. We actively recruit physicians, staff, and students from underrepresented minorities, and we strive to implement policies and procedures that value and support diverse backgrounds and experiences. MAHEC does not discriminate on the basis of socioeconomic status, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, spiritual practice, geography, disability, or age.

Click here to learn more about our participation in the Institute for Healthcare Improvement's Pursuing Equity Learning and Action Network.