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ERIC Number: ED536538
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 173
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 71
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
Obesity, a Disease of Adaptation to Environmental & Physiological Stressors
Bijaoui, Nadia Judith
Online Submission, D.H.Ed Dissertation, A. T. Still University
Background: The educational intervention of this Applied Dissertation consisted of a presentation during which self-selected volunteers were introduced to relevant literature focusing on less known factors causing the disease of obesity and contrasting from behavior. Purpose: The workshop was structured to address the problem statement: "The researcher will develop and implement an educational intervention for professional adults and students of a higher-education community in California and assess a change in attitudes toward obesity." Setting: A higher-education community in Southern California. Study Sample: The sample consisted of self-selected participants of a higher-education community. It was intended to be comprised of students, staff, and faculty. Recruiting was a challenge and the study included a low number of participants (N = 7). The sample represented both sexes and offered a noticeable diversity in ethnic background and income levels. Intervention: The intervention consisted of an educational workshop. Environmental factors, physiological factors, and negative attitudes associated with obesity were proposed as stressors. Those stressors were identified as harming the obese population. Attitudes toward obesity, plus personal behavior and thoughts as predictors of attitudes, were respectively measured with the Fat Phobia Scale and a Structured Interview. Research Design: Quasi-experimental. Control or Comparison Condition: The study did not have a control group. Comparisons were controlled with pre-and-post-tests before and after the intervention to measure the degree of learning of the participants and to assess the effectiveness of the intervention. Data Collection and Analysis: The data collection was designed as a triangulation with quantitative results (Fat Phobia Scale) and qualitative data (Structured Interview). The quantitative results of the Fat Phobia Scale provided statistical outcomes and the qualitative of the Structure Interview delivered answers to open-ended questions that were converted into numerical data and into a percentage. Findings: Pre and post-tests of the Fat Phobia Scale showed a decrease of SE = 0.83 between the means. Pre and posts-tests semi-quantitation and calculation of the Structured Interview showed an increase of 71.43% in the frequencies of causal themes introduced during the intervention. A triangulation scheme was used to evaluate the value and complementary method of each tool. Conclusion: The outcomes implied a positive change in awareness of introduced causal agents; and the intervention showed an affirmative impact. The participants demonstrated an unexpected attention to the environmental stressors; an indication that the intervention could be also presented for prevention of obesity. Best practices were applied to protect participants' confidentiality; and with the intent to design an intervention suitable for replication with a broader range of participants. Citation: The relationship between stressors and disturbing physiological processes was first established by Selye (1946) and explained with the General Adaptation Syndrome. The scientist theorized an association between stress and disease as a cause and effect phenomena, with stress causing diseases of adaptation (Selye, 1946). For the purpose of this educational intervention, obesity was proposed as another disease of adaptation adapting to food additives (environmental stressors) with obesity. The document was written APA style. Appended are: (1) Organization Chart; (2) Informed Consent; (3) Identification Questionnaire; (4) Timeline; (5) Fat Phobia Scale; (6) Structured Interview; (7) Flier for Recruitment of Participants; (8) Coding System for Pilot Interview; (9) Syllabus Essential Stressors in Obesity; (10) Workshop Evaluation Form; (11) Budget; and (12) Last Flier for Recruitment of Participants. Following these appendices is a PDF version of a PowerPoint presentation entitled "Essential Stressors in Obesity" (originally presented on October 25, 2011). (Contains 6 tables.)
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California