For individuals who struggle with weight loss, hypnosis may seem like a viable answer. After all, it’s free of chemicals, you don’t have to eat any “weird” foods or take any drugs, and it is generally considered safe. But does it work?
Studies are inconclusive. It does seem, though, that research supports the use of hypnosis as a supplement to a regular weight loss regimen. In other words, hypnosis is not particularly successful when used alone, but may be a great asset when used in conjunction with other programs.
What Is Hypnosis for Weight Loss, and How Is It Done?
Hypnosis for weight loss is conducted like hypnosis for anything else – the client is led into a state of deep relaxation which leaves the client open to suggestion. In hypnosis specifically for weight loss, practitioners make suggestions to the client’s subconscious that are supposed to help integrate ideas that are conducive to weight loss.
For instance, a hypnotist might suggest that the client visualizes him or herself in specific situations and practices self-control with regards to eating. Or the hypnotist might guide the client through a series of visualizations that “re-program” the client’s response and attitude toward food.
Sometimes, hypnosis helps a client gain insight and understanding into his or her
destructive patterns of eating behavior, thus giving the client control over – and the power to change – those habits.
Studies indicate that hypnosis is most effective not so much for fast and easy weight loss, but for maintaining weight loss over time. This does tend to be a significant hurdle for those who struggle with excess weight – many times you can get the weight off, but not keep it off. This is part of hypnosis’ appeal – it is said to help “re-wire” the brain so that patterns are changed on a deeper level. Some clients do report that repeat visits are necessary to maintain the healthy patterns.
Part of the Program
As noted above, studies show that hypnosis tends to be most effective when used as part of an overall weight loss program, particularly one that involves behavioral weight management. Not only is the hypnosis more effective in these settings – the actual weight loss program tends to be more effective when hypnosis is included as part of the treatment.
So if you would like to use hypnosis as a part of your weight loss program, research will support your decision. If you choose hypnosis as a way to lose weight instantly with no other effort on your part, you may end up disappointed.