Lifestyle Interventions for Prevention and Management of Diet-Linked Non-Communicable Diseases among Adults in Arab Countries

Maryam Naveed Muhammad Tariq, Lily Stojanovska, Ayesha S.Al Dhaheri, Leila Cheikh Ismail, Vasso Apostolopoulos, Habiba I. Ali

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


The increased incidences of diet-related non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular diseases among adults are becoming the chief public health concern in most Arab countries. Economic expansion has contributed to a nutrition shift from a traditional seasonal diet to Westernized eating habits coupled with a sedentary lifestyle. Despite the rising concern for NCD mortality, public health policies are inadequately addressed. This narrative review aims to discuss the effectiveness of nutritional interventions focusing on diet and physical activity in the management of NCDs among Arab adults. A comprehensive literature search was performed using different database platforms such as Cochrane reviews, Scopus, and PubMed for articles published between 1 December 2012 and 31 December 2021. Fifteen recent research articles addressing NCDs, mainly diabetes and obesity, from different Arab countries were included in this review. Structured lifestyle interventions involving behavioral therapy approaches and personalized goals for diet and physical activity were found to improve specific health outcomes in most studies. Significant improvements in health outcomes were reported for longer-duration interventions with follow-ups. A combination of both online and face-to-face sessions was found to be effective. It is important to identify barriers to physical activity for a culturally acceptable lifestyle intervention and conduct further studies to evaluate interventions for the long-term maintenance of health outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number45
JournalHealthcare (Switzerland)
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2023


  • Arab adults
  • Arab countries
  • Middle East
  • NCDs
  • cardiovascular diseases
  • diabetes
  • lifestyle interventions
  • nutrition programs
  • obesity
  • overweight

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Leadership and Management
  • Health Policy
  • Health Informatics
  • Health Information Management


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