The challenge of identifying behavioral alternatives to food: clinic and field studies
- 196 Downloads
Background: One of the basic principles of behavioral economics interventions is identification of alternative behaviors to compete with the reinforcing value of a highly rewarding commodity.Purpose: Two experiments that attempt to increase alternatives to eating in obese youth are presented.Methods: A randomized, controlled trial was used in Study 1 to compare a comprehensive family-based behavioral treatment program or an experimental treatment that incorporated reinforcing children for engaging in alternative behaviors to eating for 41 overweight 8-to 12-year-old children. Study 2 used a within-subject design with baseline, enriched environment and a second baseline phase to determine the influence of providing activities that compete with eating for 13 overweight 8-to 12-year-old children. Measurements included body mass index (BMI) change, alternatives to eating, eating, and physical activity.Results: In Study I both treatments were associated with significant (p < .05) and maintained reductions in z-BMI over the 24 months of observation. The experimental group showed a significantly (p < .05) greater increase in alternatives to eating, and both groups showed significant (p < .05) increases in physical activity. In Study 2 alternative behaviors to eating were increased by almost I hr/day (p < .001) but were not associated with significant changes in energy intake or physical activity.Conclusion: These results suggest that using the methods studied, increasing behaviors that could compete with eating did not influence relative weight in a clinical outcome study or energy intake in a controlled field study.
KeywordsPhysical Activity Energy Intake Sedentary Behavior Behavioral Medicine Booster Session
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- (2).Epstein LH, Saelens BE: Behavioral economics of obesity: Food intake and energy expenditure. In Bickel WK, Vuchinich RE (eds)Reframing Health Behavior Change With Behavioral Economics. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc., 2000, 293–311.Google Scholar
- (10).Epstein LH: Development of evidence-based treatments for pediatric obesity. In Kazdin AE, Weisz JR (eds),Evidence-Based Psychotherapies for Children and Adolescents. New York: Guilford, 2003, 374–388.Google Scholar
- (14).Kuczmarski RJ, Ogden CL, Guo SS, et al.: CDC growth charts for the United States: Methods and development.Vital Health Statistics (Vol. 11, 246). Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics, 2002.Google Scholar
- (18).Hollingshead AB:Four Factor Index of Social Status. New Haven, CT: Yale University, 1975.Google Scholar
- (21).Nutrition Coordinating Center: Nutrition Data System for Research (NDS-R) (Software version 4.06). Minneapolis: University of Minnesota, 2003.Google Scholar
- (27).Pate R, Trost S, Williams C: Critique of existing guidelines for physical activity in young children. In Biddle S, Sallis J, Cavill N (eds),Young and Active? Young People and Health-Enhancing Physical Activity — Evidence and Implications. London: Health Education Authority, 1998, 162–176.Google Scholar
- (29).Goldfield GS, Raynor HA, Epstein LH: Treatment of pediatric obesity. In Stunkard AJ, Wadden TA (eds),Obesity: Theory and Therapy (3rd Ed.). New York: Guilford, 2002, 532–555.Google Scholar
- (30).Goldfield GS, Epstein LH: Management of obesity in children. In Fairburn CG, Brownell KD (eds),Eating Disorders and Obesity: A Comprehensive Handbook (2nd Ed.). New York: Guilford, 2002, 573–577.Google Scholar