People with bipolar disorder (BD) have a mortality gap of up to 20 years compared to the general population. Physical conditions, such as cardiovascular disease (CVD) and cancer, cause the majority of excess deaths in psychiatric populations and are the leading causes of mortality in people with BD. However, comparatively little attention has been paid to reducing the risk of physical conditions in psychiatric populations. Unhealthy lifestyle behaviors are among the potentially modifiable risk factors for a range of commonly comorbid chronic medical conditions, including CVD, diabetes, and obesity. This systematic review will identify and evaluate the available evidence for effective interventions to reduce risk and promote healthy lifestyle behaviors in BD.
We will search MEDLINE, Embase, PsychINFO, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, and CINAHL for published research studies (with at least an abstract published in English) that evaluate behavioral or psychosocial interventions to address the following lifestyle factors in people with BD: tobacco use, physical inactivity, unhealthy diet, overweight or obesity, sleep-wake disturbance, and alcohol/other drug use. Primary outcomes for the review will be changes in tobacco use, level of physical activity, diet quality, sleep quality, alcohol use, and illicit drug use. Data on each primary outcome will be synthesized across available studies in that lifestyle area (e.g., tobacco abstinence, cigarettes smoked per day), and panel of research and clinical experts in each of the target lifestyle behaviors and those experienced with clinical and research with individuals with BD will determine how best to represent data related to that primary outcome. Seven members of the systematic review team will extract data, synthesize the evidence, and rate it for quality. Evidence will be synthesized via a narrative description of the behavioral interventions and their effectiveness in improving the healthy lifestyle behaviors in people with BD.
The planned review will synthesize and evaluate the available evidence regarding the behavioral or psychosocial treatment of lifestyle-related behaviors in people with BD. From this review, we will identify gaps in our existing knowledge and research evidence about the management of unhealthy lifestyle behaviors in people with BD. We will also identify potential opportunities to address lifestyle behaviors in BD, with a view to reducing the burden of physical ill-health in this population.