How Chronic Condition Sufferers Can Maintain Their Quality of Life

Living with chronic conditions can be challenging, but it's possible for those who live with them to have better quality of life through active management of their conditions and their symptoms. MSU Extension educator Kai Gritter explains to Rod Bain of the U.S. Department of Agriculture how people can manage their conditions, advocate for themselves and more.

May 25, 2021

Rod: Many Americans — six out of ten — live with at least one perhaps more chronic conditions.
Kai: Something like heart disease or cancer or diabetes, or it could even be chronic pain.
Rod: Yet Michigan State University Extension’s Kai Gritter says strategies are available for chronic condition sufferer to address their specific condition or conditions and, in turn, improve their quality of life. Perhaps most important is becoming an active manager of their conditions and symptoms.
Kai: It can create this vicious cycle where one symptom just leads to the next, so finding a way to break that symptom cycle is very important and making healthy choices to help manage the condition and the symptoms.
Rod: Examples of active management include taking medication as prescribed, exercising, watching what to eat and perhaps changing the way to eat, managing stress, and meeting regularly with a health care provider.
Kai: In those interactions, advocating for yourself and going prepared and ready to ask questions.
Rod: I’m Rod Bain, reporting for the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Washington, D.C.