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The Cochrane Library newsletter, 2005, issue 2

Psychological interventions can help fight fat

People who are overweight or obese can use behavioural and cognitive-behavioural strategies to help lose weight.

Social, cultural and dietary factors have all led to a rapid increase in the number of people who are clinically overweight or obese. But there are major gaps in our understanding of the ways that diet, exercise and psychological therapies can help an individual lose weight.

The Cochrane Review Authors therefore looked at data from 36 trials that involved 3,495 adult participants. The trials employed a variety of different psychological interventions. People, who want to loose weight benefit from behavioural and cognitive behavioural interventions which are aimed to help people take control of food stimuli, reinforce good behaviour, develop methods of self-monitoring and problem solving, as well as learning to set realistic goals for themselves.

The authors concluded that, when combined with dietary and exercise strategies, behavioural and cognitive behaviour therapy can help a person lose weight.

"This work should encourage people to look more seriously at these techniques, and perform some research that studies long-term outcome," says lead author Dr Kelly Shaw who works in the Department of Health and Human Services in Hobart, Australia.

Review title: Shaw et al: Psychological interventions for overweight or obesity. The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2005 Issue 2.

Chest physio doesn't help infants with bronchiolitis

Chest physiotherapy using vibration and percussion techniques does not reduce length of hospital stay, oxygen requirements, or reduce symptoms in infants with acute bronchiolitis who are not being ventilated and don't have any other accompanying illness.

Bronchiolitis is a viral infection of the airways in the lungs, and is a major cause of medical emergencies during winter in children under two year
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Contact: David Greenberg
dgreenbe@wiley.com
201-748-6484
John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
19-Apr-2005


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