Stanford University will undertake a first-of-its kind study to track how everything from exercising to eating fresh produce can lengthen a human lifespan. Amway is picking up tab.
The direct sales giant is donating $10 million for the new Stanford project, WELL, short for Wellness Living Laboratory, which will launch next year.
The program will focus on wellness, rather than diseases, with the hypothesis that promoting wellness thwarts diseases, Dr. John Ioannidis, the head of the Stanford Prevention Research Center, told Scope, a Stanford Medical School publication.
He added that participants will track and report much of their information remotely and digitally. They also will have the opportunity to enroll in a variety of clinical trials to test various interventions, such as nutrition counseling or smoking cessation programs.
What is unusual about this study is that it is designed to monitor the health of people over a five year period, or longer.
“It really helps us understand how we characterize wellness,” said Audra Davies, vice president of nutrition product development and analytical sciences for Amway.
“What is it that is keeping people well, and helping them to thrive. What are the important characteristics. There is a strong interest in understanding biomarkers of health. It is really about shifting the conversation about disease.”
Nutrilite’s association with the university extends back to the 1990s. Amway has endowed a chair at Stanford in the name of Carl Rehnborg, who is considered a pioneer of vitamin supplements.
“As I understand it, it was the very first chair in a medical school devoted to disease prevention,” said Sam Rehnborg, the youngest son of the Nutrilite founder.
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