Changing Eating Behavior Using Cognitive Training

Overview

Obesity is a global health problem. New and more efficient interventions are needed to overcome this disease. This randomized clinical trial aims to evaluate the effectiveness of changing eating behavior using cognitive training. These types of interventions have the role of creating new routines (unconsciously processed), in terms of healthy eating behaviors.

Full Title of Study: “Changing Eating Behavior Using Cognitive Training: A Randomized Clinical Trial”

Study Type

  • Study Type: Interventional
  • Study Design
    • Allocation: Randomized
    • Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
    • Primary Purpose: Treatment
    • Masking: Single (Participant)
  • Study Primary Completion Date: August 2020

Detailed Description

This is a randomized clinical trial with three groups. Participants will be found through social media announcements. The active interventions of cognitive training will be delivered at two groups: one group will receive through hypnosis and the other will receive through food inhibition training (a GO NO GO task). The control group will receive a simple GO NO GO task as an active placebo. The trial will be exclusive online and it consists of four sessions. Participants will complete their tasks on four Zoom sessions. Cognitive, emotional and behavioral data will be taken at four times: before the intervention starts, in the middle (after two sessions), at the end and at two follow up moments:one month and six month after the trial ends.

Interventions

  • Behavioral: Hypnosis
    • Participants received hypnotic induction with hypnotic suggestions for their eating behaviors.
  • Behavioral: Food inhibition training
    • Training the associations between foods and motor inhibition using a GO-NO-GO computer task.
  • Behavioral: Control
    • A simple GO-NO-GO task

Arms, Groups and Cohorts

  • Experimental: Hypnosis
    • Hypnosis formed from hypnotic induction (an adapted version from Harvard Group Scale of Hypnotic Susceptibility) together with hypnotic suggestions about a future where they will control their eating behaviors by choosing the low-calorie food instead of dense calorie one.
  • Experimental: Food Inhibition Training
    • Participants will perform an online computer go-no-go task. They will be shown pictures of dense and low-calorie food together with neutral pictures, followed by the instruction to press or not a button when the pictures are framed in a bold frame (dense calorie food).
  • Placebo Comparator: Control
    • Participants will perform an online computer go-no-go task. They will be shown pictures of dense and low-calorie food together with neutral pictures, followed by the instruction to press the button to indicate the position of the picture – left or right.

Clinical Trial Outcome Measures

Primary Measures

  • Change in Weight
    • Time Frame: Baseline, pre-intervention; immediately after the intervention; 1 month; 6 month.
    • Weight in kg
  • Change in Eating behaviour 1 – Daily Snacking
    • Time Frame: Baseline, pre-intervention; immediately after the intervention; 1 month; 6 month.
    • A self reported questionnaire of high calorie food frequency
  • Change in Eating behaviour 2 – Quantity of calories intake
    • Time Frame: Baseline, pre-intervention; in the week of the intervention; 1 month; 6 month.
    • A self reported diary of food in two different day of the week (weekday and weekend day)
  • Change in Eating behaviour 3
    • Time Frame: Baseline, pre-intervention; immediately after the intervention;1 month; 6 month.
    • Self-reported Three Factor Eating Questionnaire. The scale measures three aspects of eating behavior: cognitive restraint (CR), uncontrolled eating (UE), and emotional eating (EE). It has 21 items and the responses are on a four-point Likert scale ranging from 1 Definitely true to 4 Definitely false with three subscales one for each domain. Higher scores indicate greater CR, UE, or EE.

Secondary Measures

  • Change in Positive and Negative Affect
    • Time Frame: Baseline, pre-intervention; during the intervention (after 2 days), immediately after the intervention;1 month; 6 month.
    • Self-report – Positive and Negative Schedule (PANAS). The responses are made using Likert type ratings from 1 – Not at all, to 5 Very much. Higher scores on negative affect representing higher levels of negative affect and higher scores on positive affect representing higher levels of positive affect.
  • Change in Motivation
    • Time Frame: Baseline, pre-intervention; during the intervention (after 2 days), immediately after the intervention; 1 month; 6 month.
    • Self-report – Intrinsic Motivation Inventory. The interest/enjoyment subscale is considered the self-report measure of intrinsic motivation; The responses are made using Likert type ratings from 1 – not at all true to 7 very true. Higher total scores indicate higher intrinsic motivation.
  • Change in Self-Efficacy
    • Time Frame: Baseline, pre-intervention; during the intervention (after 2 days), immediately after the intervention; 1 month; 6 month.
    • Self-report – Weight Efficacy Lifestyle Questionnaire. The response is given using a Likert scale in 0 to10 points: 0 for “Not confident at all” and 10 indicates “Very confident”. Higher total scores are associated with higher eating self-efficacy and motivation to make positive lifestyle changes.
  • Change in Eating Intentions
    • Time Frame: Baseline, pre-intervention; during the intervention (after 2 days), immediately after the intervention; 1 month; 6 month.
    • Self-report – A three-point Likert scale created by authors. Higher scores indicate a stronger desire to eat high-calorie food.
  • Change in Eating Preferences
    • Time Frame: Baseline, pre-intervention; immediately after the intervention; 1 month; 6 month.
    • Self-report – A three-point Likert scale created by authors about the preferences of high-calorie food. Higher scores mean a high preference for high-calorie food.

Participating in This Clinical Trial

Inclusion Criteria

  • Adults
  • Persons who like high-calorie foods (self-report food preferences)
  • Persons who have a medium to high score at the self-report daily snacking
  • BMI>25

Exclusion Criteria

  • Enrolled in a weight loss program
  • Under 18 years
  • Health problems that can affect weight loss
  • Persons with clinical problems such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, mental problems, persons who take medicines that can affect weight loss

Gender Eligibility: All

Minimum Age: 18 Years

Maximum Age: N/A

Are Healthy Volunteers Accepted: Accepts Healthy Volunteers

Investigator Details

  • Lead Sponsor
    • Babes-Bolyai University
  • Provider of Information About this Clinical Study
    • Principal Investigator: Comsa Loana, Principal Investigator – Babes-Bolyai University
  • Overall Official(s)
    • Loana T Comsa, Phd Student, Principal Investigator, Babes-Bolyai University Cluj-Napoca
  • Overall Contact(s)
    • Loana T Comsa, Phd Student, +40729400122, loanacomsa@psychology.ro

References

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