Emphasizing environmental causes of obesity is motivating

December 26, 2013
Emphasizing environmental causes of obesity is motivating

(HealthDay)—Messages that acknowledge personal responsibility, while emphasizing environmental causes of obesity, seem to motivate individuals to engage in healthy diet and exercise behavior, according to a study published Dec. 12 in the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Preventing Chronic Disease.

Jeff Niederdeppe, Ph.D., from the CDC in Atlanta, and colleagues used data from 485 adults recruited from a shopping mall in New York and 718 adult members of a web-based national panel of U.S. adults to examine the impact of messages emphasizing environmental determinants of obesity on motivation to engage in healthy lifestyle behaviors. Respondents read a story that emphasized environmental determinants of health or a control condition and varied regarding how much personal responsibility the character took for weight management. After reading the story, participants were surveyed regarding their intent to eat more fruits and vegetables, exercise regularly, and control their diet to lose weight.

In both studies, the researchers found that the high personal responsibility condition produced greater intentions to engage in healthy behavior. In study one, the probability of overweight/obese respondents engaging in all three behaviors was 52 and 51 percent for those who read the high and moderate personal responsibility vignettes, respectively, compared with 32 percent of overweight/obese respondents in the control group. In the second study, the effects were driven by normal-weight respondents, with the higher condition producing greater intentions to among normal-weight but not overweight/obese respondents.

"Emphasizing factors outside of personal control appears to enhance rather than undermine motivations to engage in and ," the authors write.

Explore further: Study suggests focus on lifestyle changes—not weight loss—is key to kids' health

More information: Full Text

Related Stories

Study suggests focus on lifestyle changes—not weight loss—is key to kids' health

August 22, 2013
A UCLA School of Nursing study has found that both healthy-weight and obese children who participated in an intensive lifestyle modification program significantly improved their metabolic and cardiovascular health despite ...

Diet and exercise for knee osteoarthritis produces greater improvement in knee pain, function

September 24, 2013
Among overweight and obese adults with knee osteoarthritis, combining intensive diet and exercise led to less knee pain and better function after 18 months than diet-alone and exercise-alone, according to a study in the September ...

Childhood obesity may quadruple high blood pressure risk in adulthood

September 12, 2013
Obese children quadruple their risk and overweight children double their risk of developing high blood pressure in adulthood, according to a study presented at the American Heart Association High Blood Pressure Research Scientific ...

Feeling depressed may weigh on women

December 23, 2013
A Tulane University study of women working in Greater New Orleans area public schools found that symptoms of depression were linked to behaviors that can lead to overweight and obesity.

'Healthy obesity' is a myth, report says

December 2, 2013
(HealthDay)—The notion that some people can be overweight or obese and still remain healthy is a myth, according to a new Canadian study.

Fighting obesity: Americans respond to positive messages, not shame

September 12, 2012
(Medical Xpress)—With over two thirds of Americans now overweight or obese, public health campaigns have emerged across the country to promote behavior that can help reduce America's waistline. But do the messages communicated ...

Recommended for you

Are sugary drink interventions changing people's behaviour?

July 19, 2017
An evaluation of efforts designed to reduce how many sugary drinks we consume shows some success in changing younger people's habits but warns they cannot be the only way to cut consumption.

Young adult obesity: A neglected, yet essential focus to reverse the obesity epidemic

July 18, 2017
The overall burden of the U.S. obesity epidemic continues to require new thinking. Prevention of obesity in young adults, while largely ignored as a target for prevention and study, will be critical to reversing the epidemic, ...

Weight gain from early to middle adulthood may increase risk of major chronic diseases

July 18, 2017
Cumulative weight gain over the course of early and middle adulthood may increase health risks later in life, according to a new study led by researchers from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. They found that, compared ...

Study finds children carry implicit bias towards peers who are overweight

June 23, 2017
Even children as young as 9 years old can carry a prejudice against their peers who are overweight, according to a new study led by Duke Health researchers. They might not even realize they feel this way.

Mother's obesity boosts risk for major birth defects: study

June 15, 2017
Children of obese women are more likely to be afflicted by major birth defects, including malformations of the heart and genitals, according to a study published on Thursday.

New study finds more than 2 billion people overweight or obese

June 12, 2017
Globally, more than 2 billion children and adults suffer from health problems related to being overweight or obese, and an increasing percentage of people die from these health conditions, according to a new study.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.