The Effectiveness of Dialectical Behavior Therapy on Emotion Regulation, Food Cravings and Body Mass Index in Obese Female Students

Document Type : Original Article


1 PhD in Educational Psychology, Department of Psychology, Adib Institute of Higher Education, Mazandaran, Iran.

2 Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, Sari Branch, Islamic Azad University, Sari, Iran

3 Assistant Professor, Mazandaran Institute of Technology, Babol, Iran

4 PhD in Educational Psychology, Department of Psychology, Sari Branch, Islamic Azad University, Sari, Iran.


Background: Obesity is a medical condition in which excess fat tissue has accumulated in a person's body. Excessive accumulation of adipose tissue can cause a decline in health indicators, including reducing life expectancy or decreased quality of life.
Objective: This study aimed to evaluate dialectical behavior therapy's effectiveness on emotion regulation, food cravings, and body mass index of obese female students.
Methods: The present study method was quasi-experimental with pre-test, post-test design, and follow-up with a control group. The study's statistical population included all female students in the first year of high school in Sari in the academic year 2019-20 with obesity referred to endocrinology and obesity centers. The sample consisted of 24 obese female students selected by the convenience sampling method, considered the entry and exit criteria to the study, and randomly assigned them to experimental and control groups. The obesity craving questionnaire and emotion regulation scale were used to collect data. The collected data were analyzed using repeated-measures analysis of variance with SPSS-25 software.
Results: The results showed that dialectical behavior therapy had an effect on the components of emotion regulation, body mass index, food craving, and this result was significant up to the follow-up stage (p<0.01).
Conclusion: It can be concluded that dialectical behavior therapy reduces negative emotions in obese people and, according to one of the main factors of craving, is negative emotions; effective emotion regulation can reduce craving. As a result, it causes weight loss in obese female students.


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