Behavioural Medicine

Behavioural MedicineGroup lead: Dr Amanda Daley


This group is multidisciplinary in nature and focuses mainly on intervention development and evaluation, but includes epidemiological and policy work. Behavioural Medicine comprises the development and integration of environmental, behavioural and biomedical knowledge relevant to health and disease, and the application of this knowledge to prevention, treatment and rehabilitation. In all of these areas, the focus of our work is on applied research. In particular, we aim to develop and test pragmatic interventions for use in primary care, but we are also engaged in explanatory trials and translational research.

Our research group

Under the umbrella of behavioural medicine there are three main areas of research:

1. Exercise as a treatment or intervention in chronic disease 
We have a strong track record and interest in conducting randomised controlled trials that consider the feasibility, efficacy and effectiveness of exercise interventions to prevent and treat chronic diseases, for example, postnatal depression vasomotor menopausal symptoms, breast cancer, COPD, heart failure and MS.

2. Weight management
Interventions related to prevention and treatment of adults and children with obesity. This includes the childhood obesity prevention group whose main focus is on the development, implementation and evaluation of childhood obesity interventions, but includes, epidemiology of childhood obesity, behavioural and biological influences on childhood obesity, the health, psychological, economic, and social consequences of childhood obesity, social marketing approaches and methods for measurement of obesity, diet and physical activity in children. We have a particular interest in ethnic variations and influences on childhood obesity. This includes childhood obesity prevention studies in China.

3. Tobacco control 
Our work on tobacco control is focused on evaluating interventions to help people give up smoking.

We have a particular interest in conducting randomised controlled trials and systematic reviews/meta analyses in these areas.

Current projects

Epidemiological study of childhood obesity correlates, impacting factors and control and prevention in Guangzhou city. Funder - Guangzhou Municipal Health Bureau and Guangzhou CDC

A cluster randomised controlled trial of the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of an obesity prevention intervention in primary school age children. Funder – NIHR HTA.

Development of a culturally adapted weight management programme for children of Pakistani and Bangladeshi origin. Funder – NIHR HTA.

Randomised controlled trial to test the effectiveness of a brief intervention for weight management for obese adults in primary care. Funder – NPRI (led by University of Oxford)

Efficacy of water preloading before main meals as a weight loss intervention in obese patients. Funder – European Hydration Institute

The feasibility and effectiveness of exercise a treatment for vasomotor menopausal symptoms. Funder -NIHR

Patient self-management in primary care patients with COPD - a randomised controlled trial. Funder – National Schools for Primary Care Research

Self weighing as a weight management intervention in primary care. Funder RSF/NIHR

Effectiveness of exercise as a treatment for postnatal depression. Funder- National Schools for Primary Care Research

Prevention of excessive weight gain during pregnancy. Funder- National Schools for Primary Care Research

Evaluation of the Lighten-Up text message weight maintenance programme (Lighten Up Plus). Funder – Birmingham Public Health

Efficacy of nicotine preloading for smoking cessation. Funder HTA. Led by University Oxford.

Psychological wellbeing after smoking cessation. Funder RSF/NIHR

Systematic review of self-management for COPD. Funder NIHR

Selected publications

Madigan C, Aveyard P, Jolly K, Denley J, Lewis A, Daley AJ. Regular self-weighing to promote weight maintenance after intentional weight loss: a quasi randomised controlled trial. Journal of Public Health in press.

Robinson E, Aveyard PA, Daley AJ, Jolly K, Lewis A, Lycett D, Higgs S. Eating attentively: a systematic review and meta-analysis of the effect of food intake memory and awareness on eating. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, in press.

Daley AJ, Thomas A, Cooper H, et al. Maternal exercise and growth in breastfed babies: A meta analysis of randomised controlled trials. Pediatrics 2012;130:108-14.

Jolly, K, Lewis A, Beach J, Denley J, Adab P, Deeks, JJ, Daley AJ, Aveyard P. Comparison of range of commercial or primary care led weight reduction programmes with minimal intervention control for weight loss in obesity: Lighten Up randomised controlled trial. BMJ 2011:343;1-16.

Scott E, Daley AJ, Doll H, Woodroofe N, Coleman RE, Mutrie N, Crank H, Powers HJ Saxton JM. Effects of an exercise and hypocaloric healthy eating program on biomarkers associated with long-term prognosis after early-stage breast cancer: a randomized controlled trial. Cancer Causes Control. In press.

Are school physical activity characteristics associated with weight status in primary school children? A multilevel cross-sectional analysis of routine surveillance data. M Pallan, P Adab, A Sitch, P Aveyard. Arch Dis Childhood, 2013 In press

Development of a childhood obesity prevention programme with a focus on UK South Asian communities M Pallan, J Parry, K K Cheng, P Adab. Preventive Medicine, 2013 In press


PI(s): Kate Jolly, Peymane Adab, Miranda Pallan, KK Cheng

Postdocs: Manbinder Sidhu, Jenny Baker, Helen Parretti, Emma Lancashire, Tania Griffin, Stacey Bai Li

Research Associates and assistants: Ruth Blamey, Joanne Clarke, Kiya Kelleher, Emma Parkes 
Students: Claire Madigan, Gemma Taylor, Gemma Knowles, Joanne Clarke, Kiya Kelleher

Other research group staff members: Karla Hemming, Emma Frew, Jon Deeks, Jayne Parry, Paramjit Gill, Tim Barrett; Joan Duda