Challenges to Lifestyle Medicine for Type 2 Diabetes in Iran: A Synoptic Review

Mohammad Dehghani Firouzabadi, Ali Sheikhy, Amirhossein Poopak, Alireza Esteghamati, Jeffrey I. Mechanick, Fatemeh Dehghani Firouzabadi

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Type 2 diabetes (T2D) is a major public health issue in Iran. The principal context for T2D management is the prevention of cardiovascular disease development and progression. These preventive strategies can be enhanced with routine implementation of comprehensive lifestyle modification, guideline-directed medical therapies, and creation of infrastructure that considers social determinants of health, ethnocultural variables, and financial challenges. In this synoptic review, scientific evidence sourced from Iran is analyzed to identify tactics to optimize the lifestyle medicine component of T2D care in Iran. Important evidence-based factors gleaned from the literature were curated into 9 categories: self-care, dietary adherence, mental health, self-comparison, transcultural adaptation, family support and community engagement, physical activity, the global pandemic, and service delivery. These categories were then assigned to 1 of 4 a priori aspects challenging diabetes care in Iran: behavioral factors, belief system, drivers, and implementation. By codifying discussion points and individual tactics, the improvement and optimization of T2D care in Iran can be facilitated. This reductionist model of approaching lifestyle medicine and complex chronic disease such as T2D can be applied to other ethnocultural populations.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAmerican Journal of Lifestyle Medicine
StateAccepted/In press - 2023


  • Iran
  • behavioral medicine
  • belief systems
  • implementation
  • lifestyle management
  • type 2 diabetes


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