Obesity, which is at epidemic proportions in the USA, is associated with a higher risk of several co-morbid diseases including, cardiovascular disease, cancer and sleep apnea. Weight loss and weight maintenance programmmes are difficult to sustain for long term. Mental health problems such as apathy may be a major factor in patients unsuccessful in adhering to weight loss programmes. We propose that treating apathy will result in better weight loss in obese patients.
This was a randomized prospective pilot study. Obese patients (n = 101) were randomized in a 1:2:2 ratio to either (i) standard nutrition counselling; or (ii) the Department of Veterans Affairs weight loss programme called 'motivate obese veterans everywhere ' (MOVE); or (iii) methylphenidate treatment plus the MOVE programme together. The intervention was for 6 months (26 weeks).
For the within groups analysis, the absolute changes in weight (kg) are as follows, for MOVE (mean: -1.84; 95% confidence interval (CI): -4.56 to 0.87; p = 0.25), Methylphenidate (mean: -4.61; 95% CI: -7.90 to -1.33; p = 0.04), standard nutrition counselling (mean: -0.60; 95% CI: -2.59 to 1.39; p = 0.21), which indicates that although all three groups lost weight, only the methylphenidate group achieved statistical significance. The between group differences of the relative change in weight were not statistically different. The apathy evaluation score and the patient activation measure improved in all groups.
Together these data suggest that treating apathy might be an important factor in the success of weight management programmes.
"The latter impairments may diminish the likelihood of success for psychological programs that manage drug addiction. Thus, treating apathy with methylphenidate (see below) might be beneficial in the treatment of addiction, as it has proven effective in weight-reducing programs (Desouza et al., 2011). "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Brain histamine may affect a variety of different behavioral and physiological functions; however, its role in promoting wakefulness has overshadowed its other important functions. Here, we review evidence indicating that brain histamine plays a central role in motivation and emphasize its differential involvement in the appetitive and consummatory phases of motivated behaviors. We discuss the inputs that control histaminergic neurons of the tuberomamillary nucleus (TMN) of the hypothalamus, which determine the distinct role of these neurons in appetitive behavior, sleep/wake cycles, and food anticipatory responses. Moreover, we review evidence supporting the dysfunction of histaminergic neurons and the cortical input of histamine in regulating specific forms of decreased motivation (apathy). In addition, we discuss the relationship between the histamine system and drug addiction in the context of motivation.
Frontiers in Systems Neuroscience 07/2012; 6:51. DOI:10.3389/fnsys.2012.00051
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) has implemented MOVE!, a weight-management program for veterans designed to address the increasing proportion of overweight and obese veterans. The objective of our study was to determine whether peer support employing motivational interviewing (MI) could positively influence lifestyle changes, thus expanding the reach of the MOVE! program. We describe the initial evaluation of the peer training program.
We developed an MI peer ounselor training program for volunteer veterans, the "Buddies" program, to provide one-on-one telephone support for veterans enrolled in MOVE!. Buddies were recruited at 5 VHA sites and trained to provide peer support for the 6-month MOVE! intervention. We used a DVD to teach MI skills and followed with 2 to 3 booster sessions. We observed training, conducted pre- and posttraining surveys, and debriefed focus groups to assess training feasibility.
Fifty-six Buddies were trained. Results indicate positive receipt of the program (89% reported learning about peer counseling and 87% reported learning communication skills). Buddies showed a small improvement in MI self-efficacy on posttraining surveys. We also identified key challenges to learning MI and training implementation.
MI training is feasible to implement and acceptable to volunteer Buddies. Trainers must assess how effectively volunteers learn MI skills in order to enhance its effective use in health promotion.
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