Cardiologist named director of Samueli Center for Integrative Medicine
July 27, 2015
UC Irvine Health cardiologist Shaista Malik, MD, PhD, MPH, has been named director of the Susan Samueli Center for Integrative Medicine. The center was established in 2001 to conduct rigorous fundamental and clinical research on complementary healing practices, combining the expertise of conventional medicine with alternative approaches.
Malik is also director of the UC Irvine Health Preventive Cardiology Program and an expert in women’s cardiovascular health. She was introduced to the Samueli Center while completing her fellowship at the University of California, Irvine School of Medicine, under the leadership of cardiologist Dr. John Longhurst, the center’s previous director.
“I became an advocate for preventive cardiology in part, because of the seeds planted by my Samueli Center experience,” Malik said. “One of the core principles of integrative medicine is prevention, rather than reacting to illness and diseases as they happen. Those working at the center understand the best way to keep America healthy is to prevent disease from taking root in the first place. Cardiology is an ideal specialty for this integrative approach, because 90 percent of heart disease is preventable.”
Integrative medicine incorporates traditional Western medicine with alternative or complementary treatments such as acupuncture, massage, herbal medicine, biofeedback and yoga to treat the whole person, not just the disease. The center offers clinical services in acupuncture, naturopathy, herbal medicine, nutritional supplements and a therapeutic lifestyle program that includes a personalized diet plan and exercise program.
“The influence of nutrition, exercise, metabolic factors and emotional well-being on heart health is supported by solid scientific research, creating a new perspective in cardiology that shifts the paradigm from treating heart disease to preventing it,” Malik said. “We will continue to work to expand our program, providing world class and unique care that helps save lives.”
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