Clinical News – Oct ’16

Clinical News – Oct ’16

Australians not eating enough from the five food groups

The 2011-2012 Australian Health Survey revealed Australians are not meeting their recommended daily dietary serves across the five food groups recommended as part of the Australian Dietary Guidelines (ADGs)[1]. The results also revealed that the vegetable and legumes and the dairy food groups were the most under-consumed of the five food groups[2]. The ADGs state that a balanced diet of foods from all five food groups is important for overall health, as well as for preventing diet-related chronic diseases[3]. However, the survey also revealed that 35 per cent of Australians’ total daily energy intake came from discretionary (junk) foods[4].

The number of diet and nutritional consultations provided by GPs has steadily increased over the years, now accounting for approximately 37 per cent of consultations[5]. Health professionals can play a crucial role in encouraging patients to reduce discretionary foods and eat a wider variety of foods from the five food groups. Dairy Australia has developed the Foods That Do Good program to provide health professionals with a single source of accessible, holistic and evidence-based nutrition information. Visit www.foodsthatdogood.com.au for more information and access to resources.

Source: Foods That Do Good

[1] Australian Health Survey: Consumption of Food Groups from the Australian Dietary Guidelines. Australian Bureau of Statistics. Released 11 May 2016.
[2] Australian Health Survey: Consumption of Food Groups from the Australian Dietary Guidelines. Australian Bureau of Statistics. Released 11 May 2016.
[3] National Health and Medical Research Council. Australian Dietary Guidelines, Canberra: Commonwealth of Australia; 2013.
[4] Australian Health Survey: Nutrition First Results – Foods and Nutrients, 2011-12. Australian Bureau of Statistics. Released 09 May 2014.
[5] IMS Health 2016. Tracking data from General Practitioners (n=200). Dairy Australia.

Green leaves with sun shining through
Clinical Hypnotherapy Research Update – Anxiety Disorders

Anxiety disorders are chronic, disabling conditions that are a world-wide issue (1). Research demonstrates anxiety disorders markedly compromise quality of life but it is noted that effective psychotherapeutic treatment can assist (2). Hypnosis has been considered as an alternative methodology which can eliminate some negative components associated with medications (3).

Although the mechanisms that potentially mediate hypnosis in the context of Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) are unclear, the clinical gains that may be achieved through combining hypnosis and CBT justify systematic study of the effects of combining hypnosis with the full range of CBT techniques (4). Kirsch quoted by Golden (5) concluded in their meta-analysis that CBT provided enhanced outcomes when hypnosis was added to the treatment regime.

Research studies into anxiety disorders where clinical hypnotherapy is the specified treatment modality are sparse. However, the data available which supports clinical hypnotherapy as a validated intervention is increasing. Two meta-analyses (6, 7) confirm that available data clearly indicates that clinical hypnotherapy is an effective intervention in the treatment of anxiety disorders.

A number of articles (4, 8-12) provide evidence of the efficacy of clinical hypnotherapy treatment with Acute Stress Disorder, Childhood Anxiety Disorders, Conversion Disorder, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Obsessive–Compulsive Disorder, Panic Disorder, Phobias, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, and Social Anxiety Disorder. Uman’s research (7) supports the efficacy of clinical hypnotherapy with needle phobia in reducing pain and distress, particularly in children undergoing needle procedures. Panic disorder is over represented in patients with asthma (13) and there is evidence that hypnotherapy is useful in the treatment of panic disorder when associated with asthma. Some patients have learnt to exercise direct symptom control using hypnosis. From an extensive literature review (14) it appears that the alleviation of the stress component of asthma may be very helpful. Other researchers whilst investigating the combination of CBT and hypnosis (4) have remarked there is sufficient evidence of clinical gain to justify further systematic studies be conducted.

Should you require additional information please contact Dr Leon W. Cowen on (02) 9415 6500 or email leon@aah.edu.au.

Article prepared by Dr. Leon W. Cowen
AdvDipCH, PhD (Clinical Hypnotherapy)


[1] Baxter A, Vos T, Scott K, Ferrari A, Whiteford H. The global burden of anxiety disorders in 2010. Psychological medicine. 2014;44(11):2363-74.
[2] Mendlowicz MV, Stein MB. Quality of life in individuals with anxiety disorders. American Journal of Psychiatry. 2014.
[3] Huston TR. The effects of using hypnosis for treating anxiety in outpatients diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder. US: ProQuest Information & Learning; 2011.
[4] Bryant RA, Moulds ML, Guthrie RM, Nixon RDV. The Additive Benefit of Hypnosis and Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy in Treating Acute Stress Disorder 2005 [334]. Available from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/7938664_The_Additive_Benefit_of_Hypnosis_and_Cognitive-Behavioral_Therapy_in_Treating_Acute_Stress_Disorder.
[5] Golden WL. Cognitive hypnotherapy for anxiety disorders. American Journal of Clinical Hypnosis. 2012;54(4):263-74.
[6] Flammer E, Alladin A. The Efficacy of Hypnotherapy in the Treatment of Psychosomatic Disorders: Meta-analytical Evidence. International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis. 2007;55(3):251 – 74.
[7] Uman LS, Chambers CT, McGrath PJ, Kisely S. Psychological Interventions for Needle-Related Procedural Pain and Distress in Children and Adolescents. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. 2006(4):Art. No.: CD005179. DOI:10.1002/14651858.CD005179.pub2.
[8]Tyrer P, Baldwin D. Generalised anxiety disorder. The Lancet. 2006;368(9553):2156-66.
[9] Watson HJ, Rees CS. Meta analysis of randomized, controlled treatment trials for pediatric obsessive compulsive disorder. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry. 2008;49(5):489-98.
[10] Leary P. Conversion disorder in childhood—diagnosed too late, investigated too much? Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine. 2003;96(9):436.
[11] Tajeri B, Jahanshahi SV. Investigation of the Effectiveness of Hypnotherapy on Generalized Anxiety Disorder. International Journal of Psychology and Behavioral Research. 2015;4(2):245-9.
[12] Moghadam SA. Therapeutic effect of cognitive hypnotherapy on reducing the symptoms of Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) 2015 [2713 – 5]. Available from: http://sci-int.com/pdf/12210746952713-2715%20++14++OK.pdf.
[13] Lehrer P, Feldman J, Giardino N, Song HS, Schmaling K. Psychological aspects of asthma. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology. 2002;70(3):691.
[14] Hackman RM, Stern JS, Gershwin ME. Hypnosis and Asthma: A Critical Review. Journal of Asthma. 2000;37(1):1-15.

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