Effect of group cognitive behavioural therapy on self-efficacy and anthropometric indices among overweight and obese postpartum women
Objective: While usually associated with weight gain, pregnancy and the postpartum period are also considered as an opportunity to prevent weight gain and its complications. Therefore, the prevention of ‘excessive/unnecessary’ weight gain is a necessary issue. The aim of this study was to determine the effect of group cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) on selfefficacy and lifestyle to control weight and anthropometric indices among overweight and obese postpartum women.
Design: Quasi-experimental study.
Setting: Public health centres in Izeh, Iran.
Subjects: Sixty eligible women were divided into two groups of intervention (n = 30) and control (n = 30) using a simple randomisation method. A demographic questionnaire, a checklist and Weight Efficacy Lifestyle Questionnaire (WELQ) were used to collect the data. The intervention group received eight sessions of group CBT, while the control group received routine care. All variables were measured at baseline and four weeks after the completion of the intervention. Data were
analysed using an independent t-test, paired t-test, chi-square and analysis of covariance using SPSS version 24.
Outcomes measures: Self-efficacy, weight, height, body mass index, waist, hip, and arm circumference, waist/hip ratio, and body fat percentage were measured at baseline and 12 weeks after intervention.
Results: The results showed that in the CBT group, there was a significant increase in the total score of self-efficacy and its components, while weight, body mass index, waist circumference, hip circumference, waist/hip ratio, mid-upper arm circumference and body fat percentage significantly reduced in comparison with the control group (p < 0.05).
Conclusion: Cognitive behavioural therapy can improve self-efficacy, affecting weight and anthropometric indices in overweight and obese postpartum women. Therefore, CBT can be used as an adjunct to weight-loss intervention such as physical activity and diet or it can be used as a sole form of therapy to facilitate weight loss among overweight/obese postpartum women.
Keywords: anthropometric indices, cognitive behavioural therapy, lifestyle, overweight women, self-efficacy
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