10 February 2010

Changing maternal views and practices regarding television viewing for infants is the focus of one paper to be presented at an international conference in Brisbane today.

Organised by UQ staff and students, the Australasian Society for Behavioural Health and Medicine 7th annual scientific conference, to be held over three days at the Novotel Brisbane, is themed Behaviour and Health: Applications to Individuals and Populations.

“The conference will explore how behavioural changes – such as improving your diet or increasing your physical activity – can help promote health or assist in the management of disease in individuals and whole populations,” organiser Dr Brianna Fjeldsoe, from the UQ School of Population Health, said.

Day one of the conference will feature a presentation from Vincy Li, of the University of Sydney, on programs delivered over the telephone that help improve the health of patients with cardiovascular disease.

Encouraging older adults to ‘stand up for their health’ will be the focus of a presentation on Thursday, February 11.

Keynote speaker Professor Larry Green from the University of California at San Francisco will discuss bridging the gap between science and practice on Friday, February 12.

Other notable papers are on the health of people caring for those with an illness, an exercise program for women with cancer, body image in the media, and screening for melanoma.

Dr Kylie Hesketh, of Deakin University, will explore ways of reducing the television viewing time of children aged from three to 18 months.

“We want mothers to think about how much TV their children are watching as we know that many obesity-promoting behaviours such as time spent watching TV are established during the first five years of life,” she said.

“This study is part of a broader program called the Melbourne Infant Feeding Activity & Nutrition Trial (InFANT) Program.”

"Over 500 first time parents are currently participating in the Melbourne InFANT Program, an early childhood obesity prevention intervention, which aims to support parents to give their children the best start possible in life.”

Further information on the conference can be found at asbhm.org/conference

Media: Paul Gardiner (p.gardiner@uq.edu.au; 0401 802 534) or Penny Robinson at UQ Communications (07 3365 9723, penny.robinson@uq.edu.au)