Helping therapy and counseling clients with addiction, emotional eating, and other concerns that may be related to obesity is pert of the natural course of work for many practicing professionals, but understanding precisely how to help clients facing these issues may not always be especially easy. In particular clients with type-two diabetes, a health concern typically associated with obesity and poor lifestyle habits, may pose a challenge to therapists and counselors, as understanding how to help such clients stick to medical treatment while adopting new choices and perspectives can be a complex task. But recently, a study performed at Waseda University in Japan found that clients with this medical issue have significantly less impulse control than those without type-two diabetes, signaling a potential need for targeted therapies.
The research involved a study group comprised of individuals diagnosed with type-two diabetes, as well as a control group consisting of participants with no trace of the disease. Both groups were given the task of responding to correct or incorrect visual stimuli on a monitor by pressing, or refraining from pressing, a corresponding button. The study found that those in the study group produced far lower results than those in the control group, suggesting that type-two diabetes may be strongly associated with diminished impulse control.
As this disadvantage may lead to unhealthy eating and lifestyle habits and contribute to clients’ difficulty sticking to commitments, therapists and counselors may soon be on the lookout for ways to help counter the apparent neurological effect of type-two diabetes. With the right kind and amount of support, people facing this physical health concern that often involves a difficult mental and emotional experience may find that conquering this type of diabetes can have a major place within the counselor or therapist’s office.
© Copyright 2010 by By Noah Rubinstein, LMFT, LMHC, therapist in Olympia, Washington. All Rights Reserved. Permission to publish granted to GoodTherapy.org.
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