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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


Location: Children's Nutrition Research Center

Title: Behavioral management of the obese patient

item Johnston, Craig
item Moreno, Jennette
item Foreyt, John

Submitted to: Taylor and Francis Group
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/7/2012
Publication Date: 3/7/2012
Citation: Johnston, C.A., Moreno, J.P., Foreyt, J.P. 2012. Behavioral management of the obese patient. In: Rippe, J., Angelopoulos, T.J., editors. Obesity: Prevention and Treatment. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press, Taylor and Francis Group. p. 123-138.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Despite countless diets, exercise regimens, drugs, and behavior modification strategies, the prevalence of obesity continues its relentless increase in both developed and developing nations. Although many necessary components to treat obesity have been identified, behavior modification remains the bedrock of weight control. Behavior modifications strategies with the most success take a lifestyle change approach aimed at helping patients adhere to healthy diets and sensible physical activity regimens. These strategies involve a tailored problem-solving approach that includes self-monitoring, goal setting, contracting, problem solving, stimulus control, cognitive restructuring, stress management, and social support. A guide to selecting treatments for obesity has been developed by the National Institutes of Health. Behavior modification is recommended for all individuals receiving treatment for overweight and obesity. Although changes in diet and physical activity remain the goals of therapy, it is the behavioral strategies used that can help patients to overcome barriers that are associated with making these changes. Even in the case of bariatric surgery, behavior therapy is needed to promote the lifestyle changes that are necessary for short- and long-term weight control.

Last Modified: 10/17/2017
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