Healthy Lifestyle Program

The Rapides Foundation in late 2011 formed the Healthy Lifestyle Program to provide nutrition and physical activity counseling to Central Louisiana residents. Funded by the Foundation’s Healthy Behaviors Initiative and administered by CMAP, the goal is to offer Central Louisiana residents with resources to lead healthy lifestyles. A registered dietitian and an exercise specialist work with each client, offering demonstrations and education on proper nutrition and physical activity for good health.

The Healthy Lifestyle Program’s one-on-one counseling is offered free of charge to patients referred by their physicians. Clients are counseled for six months, learning behavior changes they can take with them when they complete the program. Central Louisiana physicians enjoy having somewhere to send their patients for follow-up and consistent nutrition and exercise education. Doctors also say that diseases become easier to control when patients modify their diets and increase their physical activity.

How It Works

Physician Referral:
Physicians assess a potential client’s need to make a lifestyle change and their level of readiness to change. The physician will send a referral to the Healthy Lifestyle Program Coordinator, who is a registered dietitian. The client then will be contacted for a one-on-one consultation with the dietitian and exercise specialist for personalized meal planning and exercise.

Nutrition Counseling with the Registered Dietitian: 
The Healthy Lifestyle Program’s registered dietitian tracks a client’s progress throughout the program, assessing their eating habits, behavior changes, weight and inches lost, as well as growing in their knowledge on proper nutrition and physical activity. The dietitian will assess the needs of each client, working with the client to make realistic and healthy goals, such as learning what the food groups are, weight loss strategies, healthy meal planning and preparation, and how to be more physically active. 

Physical Activity and Follow-ups with the Exercise Specialist:
Once the client and the dietitian establish goals and a plan to meet those goals, the Healthy Lifestyle Program’s exercise specialist will monitor and track the client’s progress. The exercise specialist will ensure the plan is being followed and clients are getting the appropriate care. The exercise specialist also provides clients with individualized, easy-to-follow exercise routines.


If you are interested in joining the Healthy Lifestyle Program, ask your physician for a referral. The Healthy Lifestyle Program has a network of Central Louisiana physicians who participate in the program. If your physician is not already a part of the network, ask him or her to contact the Healthy Lifestyle Program for a referral form.

Toll Free

Diabetes Prevention Program

The Healthy Lifestyle Program offers the PreventT2 diabetes prevention program, a yearlong support group for Central Louisiana residents who are at risk for developing diabetes. 

The PreventT2 program offers a proven approach to prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes through modest lifestyle changes made with the support of a coach and one's peers. Participants learn how to eat healthy, add physical activity to their routine, manage stress, stay motivated and solve problems that can get in the way of healthy changes. 

To become part of the PreventT2 group, residents must have prediabetes but not have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. To see if PreventT2 is right for you, call the Healthy Lifestyle Program at 318-767-3019.

Resources For Making Healthy Choices

Get Healthy Cenla Challenge Calendar

Join The Rapides Foundation's Get Healthy Cenla Challenge by downloading our challenge calendar each month. The calendar offers daily nutrition and fitness challenges to help you achieve your health goals. The challenge calendar is posted on the website each month, and can also be found on the Foundation's Facebook and Pinterest pages.

Interactive Map of Healthy Activities

Discover opportunities throughout Central Louisiana for you and your family to get healthy using our interactive map. The map features walking trails, playgrounds, fitness stations, farmers markets, and community gardens found in the region.