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1- PhD student of Cognitive Psychology, Institute for Cognitive Sciences studies, Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, Iran
2- Faculty Member of Payam Noor University, Tehran, Iran
3- PhD student of Semnan Islamic Azad University, Semnan, Iran
Abstract:   (1050 Views)
Background and Objective: Eating disordered behaviors are one of the problems that affect women's mental health and impair women's psychological functioning. Eating disordered behaviors are inappropriate behaviors that include restrictive diets, laxatives, diuretics, enema, excessive exercise, and deliberate vomiting in order to lose weight and overeat. Eating disordered behaviors result in impaired mental and social functioning and long-term unintended consequences for physical and mental health. The prevalence of eating disordered behaviors among women is as high as 61.1% among women. Its etiology refers to multifaceted factors that include individual, social, and familial factors. These include cognitive factors such as emotion regulation and cognitive control, which studies have shown to be involved in eating disordered behaviors. Since the rate of eating disordered behaviors among women is increasing, it seems that training of appropriate and approved therapeutic methods to improve the psychological problems of these people seems necessary. The treatment used in this study is the treatment of mindfulness. Mindfulness is usually defined as a deliberate process of focusing on the thoughts, feelings, and experiences of individuals in the past and in a non-judgmental way. It seems that mindfulness training can effects cognitive functions such as emotion regulation and cognitive control. Therefore, given the increase in eating disordered behaviors among women and their vulnerability, as well as the need for psychological interventions to improve related psychological problems, there are no studies directly addressing the effects of mindfulness therapy on improving emotion regulation and cognitive control. To do this, research is needed. The current research is aimed to investigate the effects of Mindfulness on the Emotion Regulation and Cognitive control in Women with eating disordered behaviors.
Method: The research method was semi-experimental with pretest-posttest design with two experimental and control groups. The statistical population of this study included all women with eating disordered behaviors in Karaj. Announcement was made to psychology clinics and social networks and 51 people were selected using available sampling. For this reason, the sample size was higher than the sample size, so that the participants could reach the minimum sample size after conducting the study. Therefore, after the Eating Feedback Test, twenty-two individuals were excluded because they did not meet the inclusion criteria and 29 individuals had inclusion criteria. The criterion for women's entry was having eating disordered behaviors based on the Eating Feedback Test. Since in the experimental designs, the minimum sample size for the groups was set at 15, so these numbers were randomly divided into two groups of control (n = 14) and experiment (n = 15).The research tools were Garner et al (1982) Eating Feedback Test, Garnefski & Kraaij Emotion Regulation Questionnaire (2007) and the Stroop Test (1935). The method of doing so was that after the pre-test, mindfulness training was performed for the experimental group. The findings were analyzed by SPSS software version 24 and covariance analysis.
Results: The results show that the scores of the experimental group were significantly different in the emotion regulation and cognitive control from the control group. The mean score of emotion regulation in the experimental group increased from 22.90 ± 0.99 in the pre-test to 27.50 ± 4.53 in the post-test. For the control group, however, changes were almost minor. In addition, the results showed that the mean speed of inhibition response in the experimental group decreased from 63.85 ±13.07 in the pre-test to 54.61 ± 6.89 in the post-test. For the control group, however, changes were almost minor. Thus, analysis of covariance shows that there is a significant difference between the mean scores of emotion regulation and cognitive control in post-test after controlling for pre-test scores in both groups. That is, mindfulness was effective in improving emotion regulation (p <0.05) and cognitive control (p <0.05).
Conclusion: The present study showed that mindfulness training is effective on improving emotional regulation and cognitive control scores in women with eating disordered behaviors. The results also showed that there was a significant difference in the emotion regulation and cognitive control variables in the post-intervention phase compared to the pre-intervention phase. In general, it can be said that mindfulness training improves emotion regulation and cognitive control of disturbed eating behaviors by providing appropriate strategies and provides the basis for promoting emotion regulation and inhibition. In this study, it was shown that emotion regulation and cognitive control can be improved with this treatment.
Type of Study: Original Research Article | Subject: Psychology
Received: 2019/08/28 | Accepted: 2019/10/4

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