Treating Obesity Co-Occurring with Depression

The percentage of Americans who are obese is continually increasing. According to Cooper et al. (2018), the rate of overweight persons has grown by 10% over the last two decades. Simultaneously, around 40.4% of the United States of America population is diagnosed with obesity (Cooper et al., 2018, p.1). Each of these illnesses has a significant impact on a patient’s cognitive and emotional well-being and degrades their living standard, but obesity combined with melancholy imposes an enormous burden. The current article proposes an approach that may benefit people who are afflicted with this challenging condition.

Summary of the Problem

Obesity and depression co-occurring is a relatively common occurrence due to the interrelated nature of these two diseases. Numerous research, for instance, Puhl et al. (2020), demonstrate that being overweight results in unhealthy eating, physical disabilities, and psychosocial problems, all of which contribute to depression symptoms. After a period, individuals struggling with mental health issues may become overweight for similar factors (Puhl et al., 2020). The likelihood of an overweight person becoming obese is more than that of a healthy individual, and overweight individuals are more likely to develop depression (Chu et al., 2019). The present work does not discriminate against patients based on sex, ethnicity, or color.

Rather than that, it explores the notion as it currently exists for the general public, since melancholy and overweight endanger the existence of both youth and adults and men and women. This issue was chosen as the capstone research proposal since professionals do not currently apply appropriate strategies to minimize melancholy in obese individuals or vice versa. Rather than that, medical providers focus only on psychotherapy or obesity. Therefore, it is essential to comprehend how to decrease the likelihood that one condition would develop and assist overweight and obese individuals most successfully. Additionally, the highlighted issue is pertinent to my professional career as a nurse practitioner, as I constantly interact with patients afflicted with these conditions.

The Role of Leadership and Nursing Ethics

As previously stated in the earlier study, this sickness is exceptionally stigmatized. More precisely, patients encounter impediments caused by melancholy and overweight and the condescending attitude and prejudice of the general public (Chauvet-Gelinier et al., 2019). As a result, mental health professionals should consider the prevalent stigma when managing fat patients who are depressed (Chauvet-Gelinier et al., 2019). More significantly, medical experts should take a leadership role in the fight against overweight and melancholy stigma. For instance, obese individuals may have difficulty receiving healthcare treatments, such as body screenings (Chauvet-Gelinier et al., 2019). Therefore, this could have serious, if not lethal, effects. As a result, medical teams must act as a catalyst for stigma reduction and shifts in attitudes toward overweight and anxiety.

The suggested methodology combines conventional obesity management with psychotherapy and, in extreme situations, antidepressants. The significant factor is whenever managing obese people; it is essential not to overlook melancholy. Medical practitioners must assist individuals in losing weight through food modification and monitor their psychological responses. The proposed amendment in how obesity and melancholy are treated in actuality will only take hold if it is vigorously implemented by health providers who will educate and encourage other professionals and medics.

Without question, physicians must adhere to high moral standards and criteria. Nonetheless, caregivers must also be remarkably gentle and assertive when communicating with clients who have a chronic condition such as melancholy followed by overweight or vice versa. According to Lucatorto et al. (2016), a physician is supposed to campaign for the safety and well-being of their patients. Therefore, in the instance of the investigated condition, caregivers should guarantee that the healing process is not stigmatizing, does not violate patients’ dignity, and instills a sense of security and impending recovery in patient populations.

Communication Strategies

The effectiveness of managing an obese patient who also has melancholy is impacted by the level of communication between a medical specialist and the client. I created mutual trust with the participant during the conversation with the client stated in the previous project. The same procedure should be followed when managing an overweight individual who is depressed. As a result of the prejudice associated with obesity and melancholy, patients frequently do not experience patient-centered interaction (Badaczewski et al., 2017). Without a certainty, this is a severe issue that reduces the intervention’s effectiveness.

As a result, physicians should take a patient-centered perspective while talking and cooperating with their patients. Clinicians should acquire knowledge on a client’s attitude and mentality and their social status, lifestyle, and sickness background. A health professional should demonstrate a genuine willingness to assist and earn a patient’s credibility. The patient-centered methodology should be used to facilitate effective communication and acquire the necessary details for designing interventions. According to Haro et al. (2017), most physicians discount the potential of obtaining data about a client’s dietary habits. Additionally, this research confirms that omega-3 fatty acids aid in the reduction of depressive symptoms and weight gain in patients who have both overweight and melancholy (Haro et al., 2017). As a result, it is critical to inquire about a client’s dietary habits to build a more successful medication regimen.

Additionally, some findings indicate a link between an individual’s socioeconomic level and their likelihood of acquiring depression or obesity. Jung et al. (2019) found that those with poor income status, independent of their weight, are more susceptible to depression. Therefore, the clinician should be mindful of the client’s lifestyle, eating patterns, clinical history, and socioeconomic status if overweight and melancholy co-occurring. Along with the measures indicated above, contemporary literature proposes that patients be actively involved in the therapeutic process. A patient should not quietly accept the medical provider’s recommendations but instead make an informed choice about the suggested treatment. Therapy of disengaged patients is typically less successful than therapy of constantly participating patients (Badaczewski et al., 2017). Thus, the optimal collaboration technique entails involving patients in a conversation, teaching them about their medical status, and actively involving them in the rehabilitation program.

Nursing Practice Standards

The American Nurses Association’s guidelines of professional nursing have a considerable influence on the development of the given treatment. Nurses are expected to be knowledgeable, qualified, and competent and courteous, moral, and disinterested. Aguilar (2017) did qualitative research on how physicians manage obese individuals. Their perspective toward such individuals was among the reasons for their intervention’s inefficiency. Additionally, one could argue that this mindset fosters the growth of depression symptoms in obese people. Thus, even though moral behavior is an unalterable truth, multiple statistical evidence demonstrates that physicians frequently breach ethical principles, either inadvertently or intentionally, and thus fail to offer adequate medical care to overweight individuals with melancholy.

Effects of Intervention on the Quality of Care

Combining standard obesity management with psychological treatment is the proposed technique for treating concurrent overweight and melancholy. Obesity treatment involves dietary and behavioral adjustments, as well as instruction about optimal eating. If an individual has issues with their endocrine or tissues, those should be addressed as well. Additionally, if an individual displays a severe case of melancholy and psychological treatment is ineffective, antidepressants may be administered. Rosas et al. (2021) found that patients with depressive symptomatology reported substantial gains in their health and well-being following treatment that included behavioral therapy and weight loss. Additionally, such treatment saves patients money by addressing two concerns concurrently or by inhibiting the growth of depression and the associated charges.

Interestingly, treating obesity also reduces the likelihood of developing depression or aids in the eradication of psychological distress. Patients will benefit, feel safer, and enjoy a better life in this scenario. To demonstrate the efficacy of the suggested solution, one may compare different institutions that are equivalent in terms of capacity and patient population. The only distinction is that one facility will implement the treatment advised by the existing program’s creator, while another will continue to treat individuals as usual. In this approach, an investigator can perform a competitive benchmarking exercise and determine whether the treatment produces substantial beneficial results.

Technology, Care Coordination, and Community Resources

Individuals may use technology to communicate with their medical providers. Telehealth is not only a convenient way to reach a counselor when one is in distress, but it is also an excellent way to reduce weight and boost physical fitness (Batsis et al., 2019). Additionally, information technology could be used to improve the coordination of care. For example, healthcare professionals could utilize electronic medical records to exchange essential data with other healthcare professionals (Batsis et al., 2019). Finally, patients can use community programs to educate themselves about depression and obesity and seek further assistance and like-minded others.


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