Mai-Lis Hellénius, MD, Ph.D., professor in cardiovascular prevention at the
Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden. Senior consultant at the Lifestyle
Clinic at the Department of Cardiology, Karolinska University Hospital,
Stockholm, Sweden.
Mai-Lis Hellénius was born 1953. MD at Karolinska Institutet 1978. Certified specialist in
Family Medicine 1985. In 1995 Mai-Lis Hellénius defended her thesis “Prevention of
cardiovascular disease – Studies on the role of diet and exercise in the prevention of
cardiovascular disease among middle aged men.” The thesis was based on a controlled
randomized trial and thereby she was among the first in the world to scientifically evaluate
advice on lifestyle. Associate professor in 1999. Professor in cardiovascular prevention
focusing lifestyle in 2006.
She has for more than 30 years been working both as a clinician, a researcher and a teacher in
the area of lifestyle medicine. She was among the first physicians in the world initiating
physical activity on prescription in 1987. Mai-Lis Hellénius has 230 publications and 150 of
them are publications in peer review journals. Mai-Lis Hellénius has been the tutor of 14 Ph.D.
students who have defended their thesis. All Ph.D. projects have focused lifestyle and
prevention. She is currently the supervisor of 2 Ph.D. students and one post-doc researcher.
She has been engaged in the writing of national and Nordic guidelines for diet and physical
activity as well as prevention of cardiovascular disease. She is a member of many expert
committees both nationally and internationally and she has been invited speaker at
international meetings more than 100 times. She has been awarded in Sweden and from
several international universities. Year 2017 she was invited to give the Morris-Paffenbarger
Honorary lecture at the opening session of American College of Sports Medicine meeting in
Denver, USA.
She has written several text books in the area of lifestyle medicine and cardiovascular
prevention for a Swedish professional audience. She has also developed a web-based
educational program for health care professionals as well as the public, which was launched
in 2009 from the Karolinska Institutet ( She is a requested lecturer for
professional as well as for the public.
Mai-Lis Hellénius has also written several popular science books on nutrition and a healthy
lifestyle. Several of them have been awarded in Sweden and internationally. Mai-Lis Hellénius
received the Dun Gifford’s Award for one of the books. The book “Vitally important” about
lifestyle and health, won the Gourmand Cookbook International Award in 2017, as the world’s
best book about lifestyle and health.


NLA/EAS joint session - Primordial prevention: The neglected topic - Discussion and Q&ANLA/EAS joint session - Primordial prevention: The neglected topic90th EAS Congress 2022Physical activity end cardiovascular preventionNLA/EAS joint session - Primordial prevention: The neglected topic90th EAS Congress 2022