An Emotional Self-Regulation Program for Obese Children: Pilot Study Using Mixed Methods
Child Health Nursing Research
Child Health Nursing Research, Vol.19(3) : 187~197, 2013
The purpose of the study was to develop an emotional self-regulation program for obese children and to examine the program's effectiveness on depression, eating habits, and body mass index.
The emotional self-regulation program was developed from theory-based strategies and a pre-post pilot study was conducted with 46 children (19: intervention, 27: control). The program included 6 weekly group sessions over 2 months. The embedded experimental model of concurrent mixed methods was used to better understand research outcomes by converging both quantitative and qualitative data. Anthropometric measurements and surveys were performed before and after the intervention. Three focus group interviews were conducted with all participants after intervention to explore their experiences.
The intervention group displayed decreased depression levels in the quantitative outcomes. The participants also expressed positive outcomes such as improvements in confidence, impulse management, intimacy, happiness, and losing weight.
These findings suggest that emotional self-regulation skills are crucial factors for obese children not only to manage their emotional problems but also to control their weight. Further research is needed with a larger sample size and randomized controlled trials.