We are delighted to announce that the latest Impact Factor for JHND is 38.97 marking a significant increase from the 1.78 of last year. The journal now has greater impact than Nature and is set for great things.
JHND launches a new virtual issue this week, entitled Qualitative methodology: obesity prevention and weight loss interventions. All articles in the issue, edited by Judy Swift and Simon Langley-Evans, will be free access from 1st April.
Since becoming Editor of JHND I have been quite surprised by the amount of correspondence I get from authors (usually, “why did you reject my manuscript; if I revise it will you reconsider?”) and reviewers. The latter often want to pass on additional comment about the paper they have been reviewing, or to give some feedback on how the process was for them. Yesterday though I had an exchange with a reviewer who wanted to comment on the way JHND runs peer review.
Now, peer review is of course a vital process which is intended to guarantee the quality of science publication. It has some flaws and many detractors, but I will save a discussion of that for another day. What my correspondent wanted to discuss was the issue of blind vs standard vs open peer review.
A standard peer review process is adopted by the vast majority of science and medical journals and involves manuscripts being sent out for review by experts in the field (or are they…). The reviewers see who the authors are and where they are based, but submit their review anonymously. This system is wide open to abuse, bias and nastiness due to the dark side of human nature. We all have rivals. Some rivalry is fair and broad-minded. Some rivalry is mean and contemptible. I, for example, know that there are people out there who would rather bathe in their own excrement than agree to anything of mine being published.
An alternative, as used by JHND, is blind peer review. Here, the manuscript has any features that may identify the authors redacted before it goes out for review. Hence neither the author or the reviewer is identifiable. The advantage of this is that the reviewer has to make a judgement based purely on the quality of the work. My correspondent didn’t like this as he felt that being able to see what else the authors had published in the area was important. I don’t quite follow this logic- if the manuscript is good (appropriate design, correct analysis, well-written) it should be published no matter what. Again, I have been on the bad end of this way of thinking, having once had a study on atopic wheeze rejected because neither myself nor my coauthor had ever published in an immunological journal before.
The other way of conducting peer review is the one I favour most, but which very few journals use; open review. Here the authors AND the reviewers are plainly identifiable. The advantage of this system is that nobody can make unnecessarily aggressive, dismissive or unpleasant comments without having to face some kind of comeback from those on the end of those comments. It forces reviewers to be fair. My correspondent thought that this would kill off the process of peer review as nobody would volunteer to do review if they were identifiable.
I wonder what anyone else thinks?
C. Rose and
- R. Howard
Coeliac disease can be controlled only through adherence to a gluten-free diet. This diet is highly restrictive and can be challenging to maintain. It has been linked with elevated levels of psychological distress, including depression, anxiety and social phobia.
Narratives on living with coeliac disease were written by 130 adult members of Coeliac UK (mean age 52.7 years; mean time since diagnosis 10.2 years; 67% sample female; 28% male). Qualitative analysis using grounded theory methods identified five key categories: living with widespread ignorance; social invisibility; creating a coeliac community; a changed identity; grief – and accepting the trade-off.
A psychosocial model of living with coeliac disease was constructed from the findings, the central category of which was the changed identity of those diagnosed with the condition. Grief was experienced in relation to a loss of the former diet, changed personal and social identities, loss of social confidence and loss of social activities. Grief was generally mitigated over time as adjustments were made to changes in identity and lifestyle. Creating (or becoming part of) a coeliac community was a strategy enabling those with coeliac disease to re-establish their identities and increase social recognition and acceptance of the condition.
Gluten-free living entails a substantial restriction of food choice. The losses and changes entailed impact on the personal and social identities of those living with coeliac disease, and on the behaviour of others towards them. Psychosocial interventions focussed on facilitating coping and adjustment may benefit those experiencing difficulties.
T. E. Schap, F. Zhu, E. J. Delp, C. J. Boushey
The use of image-based dietary assessment methods shows promise for improving dietary
self-report among children. The Technology Assisted Dietary Assessment (TADA) food record application is a self-administered food record specifically designed to address the burden and human error associated with conventional methods of dietary assessment. Users would take images of foods and beverages at all eating occasions using a mobile telephone or mobile device with an integrated camera [e.g. Apple iPhone, Apple iPod Touch (Apple Inc., Cupertino, CA, USA); Nexus One (Google, Mountain View, CA, USA)]. Once the images are taken, the images are transferred to a back-end server for automated analysis. The first step in this process is image analysis (i.e. segmentation, feature extraction and classification), which allows for automated food identification. Portion size estimation is also automated via segmentation and geometric shape template modeling. The results of the automated food identification and volume estimation can be indexed with the Food and Nutrient Database for Dietary Studies to provide a detailed diet analysis for use in epidemiological or intervention studies. Data collected during controlled feeding studies in a camp-like setting have allowed for formative evaluation and validation of the TADA food record application. This review summarises the system design and the evidence-based development of image-based methods for dietary assessment among children.
A. McConnon, R. Gribble,
- M. M. Raats,
- J. Stubbs,
- R Shepherd
Research has suggested that patients and treatment providers hold different beliefs and models of obesity. This could impact upon the consistency and quality of interventions for weight management. The present study investigated the attitudes and beliefs of health professionals, commercial weight management advisors (expert patients) and overweight and obese dieters, towards obesity.
Data were collected using a self-administered questionnaire from 287 health professionals, 85 expert patients and 116 dieters. Respondents gave their views on obesity causation and consequences, and the most efficacious means to manage obesity. Demographic data and self-reported height and weight were also collected. Factor analysis, analysis of variance and t-tests were used to analyse the data.
Health professionals, expert patients and dieters held similar models of obesity, identifying the same causes (lifestyle causes), consequences (medical consequences) and treatments (current recommended options) of obesity/overweight.
The findings of the present study indicate a broader similarity between beliefs and attitudes of those involved in obesity treatment and those that they aim to treat than was previously assumed. The concordance of beliefs between patients and treatment providers is an encouraging finding and may have important implications for public health strategies in this area.