Weight management has become one of the most problematic issues in contemporary nursing (Ng, Ntoumanis, & Thøgersen-Ntoumani, 2014). In their article “Trajectories of Weight Change and Predictors Over 18-Month Weight Loss Treatment,” Zheng et al. (2017) attempt at studying the problems of current weight management approaches. Because of a combination of a well-thought-out strategy and a profound analysis of the problem, Zheng et al. (2017)’s study becomes the platform for developing an improved weight management approach.
The issue of weight management is a rather delicate subject. As a rule, it involves dealing with not only patients’ dieting patterns but also psychological issues (Johnson et al., 2014). Therefore, the authors define the problem accurately and prove that an in-depth analysis of some of the current approaches used to handle obesity is required.
The authors aim at determining the predictors that may point to possible tendencies in weight loss in patients. In addition, the authors of the study seek to define key trajectories of weight change and, particularly, weight loss in their patients. Zheng et al. (2017) expect to get insights into the weight loss issues from the analysis of the identified factors. The purpose, thus, is stated very clearly in the article.
The authors provide a literature review that sheds more light on the issue. The review is competent, and the sources chose to prove the authors’ point are credible, with little to no bias in them. Moreover, Zheng et al. (2017) tend to use current studies along with the foundational ones to show the continuity of the problem.
The quantitative analysis selected by Zheng et al. (2017) allows determining the weight change trajectories very accurately. A randomized controlled trial (RCT) was used to conduct an analysis. The use of the identified approach has justified the fact that RCT allows determining the difference between the results in placebo groups and the groups that are provided with the actual medication (Schonert-Reichl et al., 2015). Therefore, it aligns with the research purpose and the goals of the original study.
The sample used in the study is defined by a set of well-selected inclusion and exclusion criteria. The strategy was based on random sampling (Zheng et al., 2017).
The authors used appropriate manipulation strategies that guaranteed participants complete protection from harm. The authors specified that the independent variables included demographic ones (Zheng et al., 2017).
Reliability and Validity
The study was reliable and valid due to the careful use of appropriate strategies for data collection and analysis.
The authors specify the statistical tools that they use in their research rather accurately. Particularly, Zheng et al. (2017) explain that descriptive statistical analysis was performed with the help of the SPSS software. Thus, the sub-problems of the research were addressed, and the information was gathered and processed successfully.
Test Value and Level of Significance
The authors report crucial research data properly. For instance, the test value was defined as ≥27 (Zheng et al., 2017). In addition, the authors of the research imply that the level of significance is 0.05 (Zheng et al., 2017).
Reliability and Validity: Measurement Tools
The methodology of the study has been admittedly well designed. For example, the test-retest reliability of the research was specified in the paper (0.89), and its predictive validity (0.28) was determined in the description of the research design (Zheng et al., 2017). The established instruments for measuring patient outcomes, thus, must be seen as valid and credible.
Data Analysis and Presentation
The information acquired in the course of data collection was processed with the help of the SPSS software. The authors of the analysis also decided to convert the variables into percentages in order to conduct the analysis; these included “weight, calorie and fat intake” (Zheng et al., 2017, p. 179). As a result, the data could be compared.
The outcomes of the study support the assumptions made at the beginning of the research. Particularly, Zheng et al. (2017) prove that weight-loss trends have been on the decline, and the identified trend is especially common among patients from economically unsafe backgrounds. Therefore, each of the study outcomes supports the other, as well as the initial statements.
The research has several disadvantages, most of which concern its design. Because of the need to follow RCT standards, the process of generalizing results is inevitable. Consequently, the possibility of making a false assumption becomes dangerously tangible (Porzsolt et al., 2015). Therefore, the study by Zheng et al. (2017) is not devoid of problems regarding the implications of their research.
As stressed above, because of the need to generalize research outcomes, they may require further adjustments when used in a particular setting. Nevertheless, further implications for nursing practice mentioned in the paper are fully logical since Zheng et al. (2017) suggest focusing on helping people adopt suggested eating habits and behaviors. Thus, the conclusions of the study are linked to its original purpose.
Use in Personal Practice
The article can be used in personal practice to encourage patients to lose weight. Despite minor issues, it provides an excellent choice of ideas that can be deployed in a nursing setting. Specifically, the opportunities for adopting a unique approach to patients depending on their cultural characteristics, financial opportunities, and other specifics are very numerous.
Because of a combination of well-designed research methods and insightful analysis, Zheng et al. (2017) have provided an insightful study of current weight management strategies. Providing nurses with a chance to improve the quality of care, the study suggests a shift in patients’ behavior as the focus in managing obesity. Due to its profound exploration of the issue, the study is thought-provoking and innovative.