The effect of two levels of parental involvement on weight loss of adolescents participating in a behavioral program

Russell, Mark (1987) The effect of two levels of parental involvement on weight loss of adolescents participating in a behavioral program. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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    Available under License - The author retains copyright ownership and moral rights in this thesis. Neither the thesis nor substantial extracts from it may be printed or otherwise reproduced without the author's permission.
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Abstract

The present study was designed to determine whether increased parental participation in their teenager's weight loss program would result in greater changes in obesity measures and in maintenance of these changes. Two levels of parental involvement were used, with the Experimental group attending weekly meetings and receiving a parent manual, and the Control group receiving the same manual and a weekly telephone call. -- Seventeen adolescents between the ages of 12 and 17 were recruited through advertisements, public service announcements, and through referral by a psychologist and a dietician at the Janeway Child Health Centre. Subjects were required to be at least 20% overweight, have a parent willing to attend weekly meetings, and to show sufficient motivation. Subjects were then randomly assigned to either the Experimental or the Control groups. -- All participants took part in a 20 week behavioral weight loss program which included nutrition education and exercise components. At the conclusion of the program and at the three month follow-up, there were no differences found as a result of group membership on the Body Mass Index; skinfold measures, or on Body-Esteem. The expected changes as a result of the program (regardless of group) were also not found at termination or at follow-up. A significant increase in body-esteem was found for the subjects regardless of group membership. A significant decrease in Body Mass Index measures was found in a comparison of initial measures and Week Eight measures. -- Reasons for the lack of overall loss of obesity were discussed, with emphasis on why the significant BMI losses for the group as a whole which were found at Week Eight were not present at termination or at follow-up. Possible reasons include loss of motivation during the Christmas break, or more plausibly, the failure of the program to continue the initial motivation after the break. A possible solution is to present the material in a manner which would be more interesting for this age group. -- The lack of parental attendance at weekly meetings was also discussed, as were methods which might be used to overcome the apparent lack of motivation by parents. Suggestions included contingency contracting for parental attendance and the use of techniques to make the material presented more interesting.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/5832
Item ID: 5832
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 58-66.
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Psychology
Science, Faculty of > Psychology
Date: 1987
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Obesity in children; Weight loss--Psychological aspects

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