From Science to Practice
Nutritional counselling is increasingly drawing on the evidence around behaviour change, supporting people to change their dietary/physical activity habits in a sustainable way. Our research with European dietitians has shown that there is a need for the evidence around behaviour change to be more easily accessible to facilitate its translation into dietetic practice. The existing scientific literature can often be perceived as a minefield of confusing psychological theories and sometimes overlapping concepts that dietitians do not always find straightforward to apply.
With that in mind, one of the key objectives of the myPace project was to develop online behaviour change resources to support European dietitians using behaviour change in their practice. We envisage that by presenting the existing evidence in a language that is appropriate and practical to dietitians, the resources will provide useful insight on when, and for whom, different behaviour change techniques might be effective.
The scientific basis for the development these resources consisted of two parts. We first reviewed the scientific literature on behaviour change theory for weight loss to identify and characterise the range of behaviour change theories and techniques used in weight loss interventions, and within these, their evidence of success. Secondly, we intensively engaged with European dietians for which we used the Behaviour Change Techniques Taxonomy developed by Prof. Susan Michie and colleagues from the Centre for Behaviour Change at University College London.