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Most individual's who actually exhibit a decrease in appetite happen to be men, "Men tend to have a greater reduction in appetite immediately after working out at moderate to high intensity levels than women do," (Leon 2009:1). In fact, most women tend to eat more after a work out on average than their male counterparts. Along with increasing the client's health, a regular exercise regiment may have a positive affect on the other symptoms of depression she has been exhibiting. Exercising within a social situation can also have the potential to open up social situations and keep the mind focused, both of which can also have a favorable outcome in terms of stimulating the client's appetite. In fact, an exercise routine would in deep perk up not only the body, but also the mind, "stay socially active and mentally alert. Both tend to increase appetite," (Clemen-Stone et al.:658). This is further evidence which would prove regular exercise as the best natural method for intervention which would provide the most favorable results.
The duration of that exercise is also an important key to the desired results of an increase in appetite.
Due to the nature of the client's diagnosis, a longer duration is more efficient in providing for the success of the intervention designated in getting the client to eat more often and larger amounts. Depression is a long afflicting disease, "The expression 'clinical depression' describes a group of illnesses that are characterized by an excessive or long-term depressed mood that affects a person's life," (MFI Fellowship 2008:1). Therefore, the regiment for exercise must have a lengthy duration in order to not fail at some future point in the client's fight with depression. The patient's recent weight loss was dramatic, over 15 pounds within a month's span. In order to prevent a relapse of this situation from occurring again, it will prove necessary to keep up this regiment as long as possible. With this, recovery for the depression can begin; which in and of itself provides further relief from the pains of a lack of eating, "Similarly, recovery from depression is often followed by improved appetite, greater intake and potential increase in weight," (Theleritis et al. 2006:1). These are the solid justifications of the exercise regiment as a method to help curb the lack of appetite.
With this regiment implementation, it is hypothesized that the client's appetite will increase. With this increase will come more food eaten, therefore helping provide the strength and nutrients she needs to fight the rest of the symptoms caused by her depression. With a regiment of a medium to high intensity exercise three nights a week her appetite has a high chance of increasing. If this hypothesis proves successful, the client has a better chance at recovering from her depression. It may also provide her body the strength to turn toward more drastic pharmacological methods to help ease the other symptoms cause by her depression.
Variables and Objectives of the Intervention
The independent variable (x) proves to be the frequency of the exercise, which is the actual intervention itself. This is to be measured through number of meals eaten daily, as recorded in a log by the client. Our research will compare the independent variable of the exercise implementation to the dependent variable (y) of the change in her appetite. The frequency of meals is to be recorded by the client herself. They represent the desired behavior which is to be changed in order to aid the client on her journey to fight depression while at the same time remaining healthy. Our main objective in this intervention is then to increase the patient's appetite through exercising more.
Instruments and Intervention Strategies
Due to the fact that there is no way for the client to eat every meal within a supervised context, the only way to record such data in a real-time application is through utilizing a log to record the frequency of her meals. And so, this research did ask the client to compile a log of how many times a day she ate, and around what time those meals were. This data can be entered into the log as simply with the date and time of the meal. At the end of each week, the log was collected from the client and analyzed accordingly with her scheduled exercise regiments each week. It can then be transferred quite easily into numerical data which can be put through statistical testing to analyze the viability of the hypothesis.
In order to test our hypothesis as well as seek out the future potential of this research beyond the set time of research, regression analysis of the data proves to the most efficient form of data analysis. Using a regression analysis model, we can test the validity of the hypothesis posited earlier, along with testing results in the future, provide her conditions and devotion to her exercise regiment continues. This method proves to be a validated way to test hypothesis, and can serve a double purpose within the context of this research.
Selected Research Design
This study is constructed on an ABA design. It has noted the behavioral trait of a decreased appetite which began prior to these efforts, then implemented an intervention followed by another period of observation in which we determined the client was successful within this intervention. It is an eight-week intervention which asks the client to exercise three days a week for at least one hour, with the potential of rotation of exercise practice. The frequency of meals is measured in comparison to the constant of the exercise regiment. What was found was that the client's appetite did in fact increase in comparison with her behavior before the intervention.
Day of Intervention
Number of Meals
Exercise (in Hours)
After data was collected and recorded, it was run through a series of equations in order to test it against the hypothesis. The equations used were that of linear, logarithmic, polynomial, power, and exponential. The equation which gave the largest R. value was then used as the primary equation to prove or disprove this hypothesis. The lower the R. value in the equation, the higher correlation between the data; any R. value above 1.0 proves that there is no correlation, and the hypothesis is not valid. This resulted in the following analysis which was most correlated with the linear equation:
Interpretation of Findings
The results of this hypothesis validate the prior posited hypothesis. The R. value of the given equation was a mere 0.2312, showing a strong correlation between the increase in appetite and the number of days placed on the exercise regiment. This analysis of recording data statistically proves the reliability and validity of our hypothesis.
The results of this study show that the client has improved favorably to the implementation of an exercise regiment in the increase of appetite. This shows that the patient is on her way to keeping her body physically fit which will giver her more energy and help her with her various symptoms of depression. Not only does it give her strength to fight her current bout of depression, but it has favorable implications for a methodology of increasing appetite in general. The implications of this study give potential answers for using natural methods of appetite stimulants without having to resort to medication in order to get patients to eat more and nourish their bodies.
Clemen-Stone (2002). Comprehensive community health nursing. Elsevier Health Services.
Meiner, Sue. (2004). Care of gastrointestinal problems in the older adult. Springer Publishing Company.
MFI Fellowship. (2008). Understanding depression. Mental Illness Fellowship of Australia Inc. Mental Illness Fellowship Victoria.
Morton, Meredith Jean. (2005). Exercise in cold water may increase appetite. Medical News. Retrieved Mach 29, 2009 at http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/23856.php.
Leon, Cristinia. (2009). How does appetite affect hunger? LifeOrganizers.com. Retrieved March 29, 2009 at www.lifeorganizers.com/Organize-Your-Wellness-/the-Organized-Exerciser/How-Does-Exercise-Affect-Hunger.html.
Lucca, Adelio & Smeraldi, Enrico. (2006). Cachexia and Wasting: A Modern Approach. Springer Milan
Theleritis, Christos G.; Papadimitriou, George N.; Papageorgiou, Charalabos C.; Dikeos, Dimitris G.; Masdrakis, Vasilis; Kostoulas, Constantin; Psarros, Constantin; Soldatos, Constantin R. (2006). Excessive weight gain after remission of depression in a schizophrenic…[continue]
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