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Obesity: Discovering and Treating the Thin Within

12 CE Credits/Hours - Online Course - $99.00

Developed by Sally Singer Horwatt, Ph.D.

This course includes materials consisting of:

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General Course Description

Everybody from the President's wife to the local cab driver is talking about the "obesity epidemic" these days. Depending upon their professional training and tendency to conflate correlation with cause and effect, investigators and policy makers, like the six blind men describing an elephant, have advocated widely diverse "solutions". Some have concluded that the main hope for stemming the problem lies in controlling the "obsogenic" environment. One psychiatrist in a December 2, 2007 New York Times Magazine letter to the editor said she has "no doubt" that "Without treating the compulsion that underlies such behavior, it is no wonder that patients who have [bariatric] surgery, but no psychiatric treatment may develop 'new' psychiatric symptoms like gambling, compulsive shopping and alcoholism". Yet, a well-respected group of researchers, reviewing the best available literature, found no more psychopathology in obese girls than in the non-obese. Other scientists point out that the sensory and physiological mechanisms of taste, appetite or satiety which control intake have evolved to protect us against energy depletion, not to protect us against dietary excess. And so it goes.

This beginning, introductory course covers the theory behind NLP and includes specific techniques for treating, not just disorders, but broader conditions as well, such as helping clients accept and utilize criticism, enhance their learning, improve their effectiveness in businesses and organizations, and quickly reach a state of forgiveness. Therapists will learn how to bypass clients' consciousness and elicit unconscious motivation for change. Verbatim transcripts of sessions take you into the therapist's office to witness NLP in action. NLP is not without its critics, and this course also provides a critique of NLP.

Educational Objectives

This course will teach psychotherapists to:

1.    Define obesity.

2.    Identify the co-morbid disorders commonly associated with obesity

3.    List some examples of neurohormonal and epigenetic factors known to promote obesity.

4.    Explain some of the complex socioeconomic data regarding the incidence of obesity

5.    Critique some of the psychological data regarding obesity.

6.    Specify some of the documented stressors, which the seriously obese must face.

7.    Identify the flaws with using BMI as the sole measure of obesity.

8.    List six interrelated causes of body weight.

9.    Cite the direct medical costs associated with obesity.

10.    Note the indirect medical costs of obesity.

11.    Evaluate the relative efficacy of restrained eating, exercise, medication and surgery in the treatment of severe obesity.

12.    Summarize the eligibility criteria for the surgical treatment of obesity.

Course Syllabus


Definition and Diagnosis of Obesity

Causes of Obesity

  • Calories count
  • Environment
  • Genetics
  • Diseases and Drugs

Why worry about obesity?

  • Obesity is a risk factor for many diseases and disorders
  • Obesity is a risk factor for lower quality of life with occupational, financial and social implications
  • Economic Implications
  • Social and Financial consequences

Frameworks for Addressing Obesity in the 21st Century

  • The Obesity Epidemic as a Complex System
  • A Systems-Oriented Multilevel Framework

Treatments for Obesity and Associated Evidence

  • Limiting Calories
  • Exercise
  • Combination of Calorie Reduction and Exercise
  • Surgical Options

Resources, References, and Updates for clinicians and clients

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