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ESSAY: Public Health

Present a basic case in which an individual would wish to change a long-term health behavior? For example, a 39-year-old female wishes to stop her two-pack-a-day smoking habit which she has had for 10 years. Using various models and theories of behavioral change help create strategies for modifying the patient’s behaviors. Explain the process/methods that could be used to accomplish this goal. Predict how long this may take and what challenges may present themselves? Review three peers’ postings and provide constructive feedback on additional changes which could be beneficial as well as additional insight.


One example of a basic case involves a 35-year old female with a long-term health behavior of eating junk and unhealthy foods to a point of battling obesity. She finds comfort in eating without taking due care on the implications of junk and unhealthy foods, overeating, and issues of obesity on her health and wellbeing. In this case, there is a need to create a strategy to modify her long-term eating behavior. Kelly & Barker (2016) identify models or steps to take to cement changes in behavior namely taking action that results in or represents a change…

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Therefore, the 35-year old should adopt a permanent lifestyle change by, first, taking action on contributory factors. For example, she should change her eating patterns by adopting a distraction approach by focusing her attention on something else whenever a food craving kicks in. Secondly, she should embrace a confrontation approach (Kelly & Barker, 2016) by focusing on the negative implications of her eating behavior, for example, by considering the number of calories and fats whenever she craves cookies and snacks. Additionally, she should focus on the shaping approach (Young, 2014) by getting rid of junk and unhealthy foods, and focus on step-by-step change in her diet by consuming healthy foods.             Changing an individual’s eating habits is a long-term process. In this case, the 35-year old is supposed to adhere to these changes, which would take approximately 6 to 12 months to experience significant changes in her eating behavior, her mental state towards unhealthy foods, and the overall changes in her health and wellbeing. Some challenges are expected since it is a complete change in the behavioral patterns (Young, 2014). For instance, she will have to battle with the temptations to consume junk such as snacks, chips, and cakes. Another challenge is lifestyle change…

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