Browsing by Author "Ireland, Alana"
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- ItemOpen AccessMental Health, Wellness, and Childhood Overweight/Obesity(2012-06-24) Russell-Mayhew, Shelly; McVey, Gail; Bardick, Angela; Ireland, AlanaChildhood obesity is a growing concern, and while progress has been made to understand the association between multiple biological factors (i.e., genetics, nutrition, exercise etc.), little is known about the relationship between mental health and childhood obesity. In this paper, we offer a review of current evidence about the association between mental health and childhood obesity. A systematic literature search of peer-reviewed, English-language studies published between January 2000 and January 2011 was undertaken and resulted in 759 unique records, of which 345 full-text articles were retrieved and 131 articles were included. A theoretical model is proposed to organize the paper and reflect the current state of the literature and includes psychological factors (i.e., depression and anxiety, self-esteem, body dissatisfaction, eating disordered symptoms, and emotional problems); psychosocial mediating variables (i.e., weight-based teasing and concern about weight and shape), and wellness factors (i.e., quality of life and resiliency/protective factors). We conclude with a number of recommendations to support the creation of solutions to the rise in childhood obesity rates that do not further marginalize overweight and obese children and youth and that can potentially improve the well-being of all children and youth regardless of their weight status.
- ItemOpen AccessMental Health,Wellness, and Childhood Overweight/Obesity(Hindawi Publishing Corporation, 2012-04-30) Russell-Mayhew, Shelly; McVey, Gail; Bardick, Angela; Ireland, Alana
- ItemOpen Access‘One-size-fits-all’? A Situational Analysis of Weight-Related Issues in Schools(2016) Ireland, Alana; Russell-Mayhew, Shelly; Russell-Mayhew, Shelly; Strong, Tom; Wulff, DanMany researchers have explored the impact or effectiveness of eating disorder and obesity prevention programs in schools. Few, however, have investigated integrated prevention efforts, and despite recommendations to shift the focus to environmental or systemic change, even fewer researchers have considered the broader situation of weight-related issues. In this study, I intend to address this gap by exploring how weight-related issues are negotiated in schools, and what institutional and social practices influence their construction. I used situational analysis to develop a broader picture of the complexities of the situation and the differences or tensions extant. Analysis of multiple sources of data such as research literature, participant interviews, personal memos, and educational curricula/policy documents contributed to a more comprehensive understanding of the elements within the situation. Mapping processes involved in situational analysis indicated multiple tensions involved in promoting health in relation to weight in schools, and highlighted the importance of opening-up conversations amongst various stakeholders involved in the situation. Findings also emphasized the importance of exploring ways to (a) promote acceptance of all bodies, and (b) change policies or practices that contribute to the stigmatization of individuals based on body size.
- ItemOpen AccessWhy weight: how does professional development about weight-related issues impact schools?(2012) Ireland, Alana; Russell-Mayhew, Michelle (Shelly) K.This project focused on teacher preparation for health and well-being in schools through professional development for teachers in a rural K-12 school in Alberta. Although the role of schools in prevention efforts has been explored in the literature, few studies have examined sensitizing teachers to health promoting messages, including their own conception of and attitudes toward weight. The study was conducted with twelve teachers and fifty-seven students. Body image satisfaction, school climate, self-efficacy, and weight-bias were assessed before and after a professional in-service. At three month follow-up the above were reassessed, and qualitative data regarding teaching practice was collected. Results suggest that teachers are not immune to cultural messages that perpetuate the thin ideal and weight-bias. Providing professional development for teachers may promote more positive attitudes and practice regarding body image, weight-bias, and weight/eating-related concerns. Future evaluation with a larger sample size (more than one school community) is needed.