Why losing weight is all in the mind…

It’s estimated that one out of three women and one out of four men in the UK are on a slimming diet at any given time.

Most will have tried numerous diets before, spending many hundreds of pounds on low calorie meals, joining slimming clubs, gyms or buying special super foods to speed their metabolism. Some will have even gone down the risky road of popping slimming pills bought over the internet.

But the truth is most diets don’t work. The Washington Post famously reported that out of every 200 people who go on a diet, only 10 reach their goal weight and only one of those manages to keep the weight off. That’s a failure rate of 99.5%.

If I say to you: “don’t think about penguins” The first thing that comes to mind is penguins. The same thing happens when you are on a diet. All you can think about is FOOD.

So not only are you trying to eat less, you are trying to eat less while thinking about food 24/7. You are setting yourself up for failure.

Cutting out all your favourite foods and attempting to live on healthy options is tough. It’s far better to change how you see and use food, losing weight gradually, not through dieting, just through different behaviour and a different approach to eating.

There are things you can do to re-programme your relationship with food.

  • Write a food diary noting what times of the day you are snacking or overeating. Try doing something else at those times instead. Recognise your eating triggers and then over-ride them.
  • Eat smaller portions. Most of us are eating portions which are too large for our stomachs to comfortably manage.
  • Use a smaller plate to trick your mind into thinking the portion is bigger.
  • Use a small fork to eat with. I will take more time and effort to eat so you will slow down and eat less.
  • Eat when you are hungry, not just because the clock says it is meal time.
  • Could it be that you are thirsty and not hungry? Drink a large glass of water.
  • Slow down. Eating too fast leads to over-eating.
  • It takes 15 minutes for your stomach to tell your brain that you’re full, so rest after your main course and you probably won’t feel like eating that pud.
  • Make sure “treats” in your house don’t revolve around food. Treat yourself to a spa treatment, cinema trip or day out instead of a meal.
  • Cut down on alcohol. The hidden calories in booze are lethal for the waistline.

We are all capable of using mind over matter techniques, but for an extra helping hand, hypnotherapy can be an effective aid for weight loss. It can speed up the process of change by accessing the subconscious mind.

Forget the stage hypnotists you may have seen, hypnotherapy administered by a trained hypnotherapist is a gentle, talking therapy whereby the therapist uses key words in a certain way to appeal to the subconscious. It works by removing negative patterns, over-riding trigger impulses and reinforcing positive images and aspirations a person may have about how they really want to look. So out with the fat, and in with the thinner, happier you.

Once a person knows what makes them reach for the chocolate bar, dish up an oversized portion, or raid the fridge at night then it makes it easier to over-ride that response with a different coping mechanism.

For clinically obese clients hypnotherapy can go one step further.

Hypno gastric bands have been getting some great publicity recently. TOWIE star Gemma Collins recently lost three stone after a session to have a virtual gastric band fitted.

Real gastric bands can have amazing results, but all surgery carries some risk. A hypno gastric band is not only considerably cheaper, it carries no risks and there is no “down” time for surgery.