Thesis

Healthful living : learning to control unhealthy habits : a behavior change program for the worksite

The major health threats facing the American public today are largely the result of unhealthy habits. Six of the ten factors associated with America's number one killer, cardiovascular disease, are clearly the result of lifestyle. In addition, health care costs have skyrocketed in recent years, and American corporations have absorbed a large share of the financial burden. It was the purpose of this project to design a program to teach people how to control unhealthy habits and how to maintain successful change. The program was designed as a generic model for addressing various unhealthy behaviors, and was intended for group application to occupational and clinical settings. The program design was based on the assumption that in order to achieve lasting lifestyle change, it is necessary to experience the process of change as positive and rewarding. Towards this end, cognitive-behavioral methods shown to influence successful maintenance were utilized to (a) help participants identify and alter patterns that impede change, and (b) assist participants in developing the coping skills necessary for the maintenance of new behaviors. (See more in text.)

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