A new approach to weight loss and behavioural therapy has been found to be more effective for people dropping weight and consequently keeping the weight off than conventional therapy methods.
A study published in the october issue of the October issue of Obesity, the scientific journal of The Obesity Society (TOS) looks into the effectiveness of Acceptance-Based Behavioral Treatment (ABT) as opposed to Standard Behavioral Treatment (SBT). SBT is a typical treatment plan encouraging reduced caloric intake and increased physical activity.
“Standard Behavioral Treatments (SBT), which emphasize the importance of decreased caloric intake and increased physical activity, can help individuals lose weight for a period of time, but the strategies taught in such a program are difficult to maintain long-term,” said lead author Evan Forman, PhD, FTOS. “The Acceptance-Based Behavioral Treatment (ABT) method teaches highly specialized self-regulation skills so individuals trying to lose weight can continue making healthful choices long after the program ends. These skills include mindful decision making, identifying and committing to big-picture life values and a willingness to accept discomfort and reduced pleasure for the sake of those values.”
Results showed that participants who received ABT lost 13.3 percent of their initial weight at one year, compared to 9.8 percent weight loss at one year for participants who received SBT only.
Accepting discomfort and reduced pleasure for the sake of values sounds rough but the results speak for themselves. Results showed that participants who received ABT (which includes all behavioral skills taught in SBT) lost 13.3 percent of their initial weight at one year, compared to 9.8 percent weight loss at one year for participants who received SBT only. That’s a massive amount, to get those sorts of results elsewhere you’d have to be on some pretty vigorous diets.
Here is what ABT Emphasizes:
- Choose goals derived from freely-chosen personal life values, such as living a long and healthy life or being a present, active grandparent.
- Recognize that weight-control behaviors will inevitably produce discomfort (such as urges to eat, hunger, cravings, feelings of deprivation and fatigue) and a reduction of pleasure (such as choosing a walk over watching TV or choosing an apple over ice cream).
- Increase awareness of how cues impact eating and activity-related decision making.