Adventist-owned Food Company Relaunches
Famed “CHIP” Lifestyle Program

Australia’s Sanitarium Health focuses on program expansion. (Posted January 9, 2012)

BY NATHAN BROWN, reporting from Crandall, Georgia

A new global, integrated health resource for local Seventh-day Adventist congregations was launched at the CHIP Summit, held November 15 to 19, 2012, at Cohutta Springs Conference Center, Crandall, Georgia. The all-new Complete Health Improvement Program (CHIP) builds on the foundation of the former Coronary Health Improvement Project, including the continuing core principles of health intervention and lifestyle medicine, while adding a contemporary presentation, and updated medical and scientific research.

CHIP-PER PRESENTERS: Darren Morton, left, a physiologist and a senior health and exercise science lecturer in the School of Education at Avondale College, Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia, was a presenter at the CHIP Summit along with Hans Diehl, CHIP program founder. [PHOTOS: Nathan Brown]
Hans Diehl founded the CHIP ministry 25 years ago, but acknowledges that the previous materials needed updating and that the self-supporting ministry did not have the necessary resources for this task. “We needed to find a strong partner with commensurate resources but that also embraced our basic Adventist wholistic values with strong spiritual underpinnings,” Diehl explained.

Working particularly with the church-owned Sanitarium Health and Wellbeing in Australia, the South Pacific Division purchased CHIP with a plan for it to be renewed and relaunched under the leadership and management of Sanitarium.

“CHIP has been a great program that was setting the church up to be a center of influence in the community, that was bringing great results and bringing the church’s health message to life,” said Cathy McDonald, general manager of Sanitarium’s Health and Wellbeing Services. “We also saw the potential to update it and enlarge its impact.”

“After 25 years of making CHIP my life and my mission, it was not easy to let CHIP go, but my team and I recognized the need for an enriched environment in which CHIP could develop to full maturity,” added Diehl. “We are truly grateful for how God has led. We are overjoyed to place this project in the hands of the church for which it was created.”

While need for a new CHIP was understood, medical researchers lauded the measurable clinical outcomes of the existing program. Early this year the American College of Lifestyle Medicine described research on CHIP participants published in the American Journal of Cardiology as “some of the most impressive recorded clinical changes ever in the literature.”

NEW KITS: Summit participants unpack the all-new CHIP resource kits at the launch of the new program on Nov. 15, 2012.
Some 270 CHIP facilitators, health professionals, and health leaders applauded the launch of the new CHIP resources that included an integrated textbook, participants’ journal, recipe book, and DVD series at the CHIP summit. “I think the new CHIP resource is phenomenal,” said Dr. Brian Will, a medical doctor and CHIP leader in the Meadowglade Seventh-day Adventist Church in Battle Ground, Washington, 13 miles northeast of Vancouver. “The advances in scientific knowledge have added greater credibility to the core principles of CHIP. The team has created a product that is dynamic, engaging, and more effective than even the great results we have already seen. It will be simpler to run, but will be more professional and will come across well in the community.”

According to McDonald, the combined American and Australian team is planning for the new CHIP “to become the biggest lifestyle medicine and disease reversal program globally and to resource the global church with a quality health program at a local church level.

“We believe this will significantly add to the medical missionary work of the church,” she added. “We want to be able to support local churches to be centers of health, hope, and healing.”

New CHIP programs will begin from January 1, 2013. For more information, to become a CHIP facilitator, or find an active CHIP group near you, visit or

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