Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) approaches have started to play an important role in the treatment of obesity.
Obesity is a public health problem that concerns all segments of the society today, has serious negative effects on mortality and morbidity rates and is one of the most important health problems of developed and developing countries.
Cognitive behavioral therapy of obesity includes:
- stimulus control,
- eating control,
- reinforcement and empowerment,
- cognitive restructuring,
- proper nutrition education,
- increasing physical activity and behavioral contract
In the treatment of obesity, combining the changes in lifestyle such as diet and increasing physical activity with cognitive-behavioral interventions increases the efficacy of the treatment and ensures the sustained weight gain.
Behavioral therapy is based on learning principles. This
principles are ; human expectations about the consequences of their behavior, and behavior change in response to environmental requirements. They are based on a large number of studies. The aim is to replace the unwanted behavior with the healthy ones. Or decreasing the effects of unhealthy life style and making a new out of it.
Purpose of treatment of behavior change is to create lifelong behavior change and thus to maintain the desired body weight in the long term. The relationship between the biological basis of obesity and behaviors are important. If the total energy consumed exceeds the energy received, the negative energy balances weight loss.The main goal of behavioral treatment in obesity is to reduce eating and increase activity. According to behavior theory, eating behavior strenghthens due to the tastes of foods. In summary the person ignores the negative consequencesof overeating in long term over the taste and smell of the short term pleasure.
Exercise cause fatigue, discomfort and coercion especially for obese people. But if they exercise regularly, long-term fitness, weight loss and a healthier life is not impossible.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy in Obesity
Behavioral treatment for obesity is usually administered for 12-20 weeks in 1-2 hours sessions per week with groups of 10-12 people under the direction of a therapist.
The steps of behavioral treatment are;
- Stimulus control
- Control of eating behavior
- Cognitive restructuring
- Proper nutrition education
- Increasing physical activity
- Methods of maintaining attained and / or ideal weight
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