A review of hypnosis for weight loss

A review of hypnosis for weight loss
  • PublishedJune 13, 2020

For the case of weight loss, professionals such as doctors, nutritionists, dietitians, and personal trainers speak the same language. That is to say; healthy eating and regular body exercise. But there is one professional you probably have or have not heard about; and this is a hypnotist, an expert in hypnosis. We are therefore going to review hypnosis for weight loss.

Yes, I know, using hypnosis for something as serious as weight loss might sound far-fetched. But believe me or not, different people have resorted to hypnotists to help them adjust their lifestyles as regards to food and fitness, and many people have succeeded.

So, what is hypnosis?

According to Wikipedia, hypnosis is a human condition involving focused attention, reduced peripheral awareness, and an enhanced capacity to respond to suggestions.  Other theories look at hypnosis as an altered state of mind or trance, revealed by a level of awareness different from the ordinary state of consciousness.

During hypnosis, an individual deeply focuses, concentrates, and increases his or her response to suggestions. It usually begins with a hypnotic induction, with the help of a hypnotherapist.

The use of hypnosis for treatment purposes such as weight loss, pain management to reduce acute, chronic pain, and more is referred to as hypnotherapy. On the other hand, using hypnosis for entertainment is called stage hypnosis.

Most people fear to venture into hypnosis because they have a misconception that during hypnosis, someone else can control your mind and make you do funny and dangerous things while they are unconscious.

The film industry like holy wood has painted a specific and inaccurate image of what hypnotists are and what they are capable of. For example, the industry has made people believe that hypnosis is all about turning into a zombie and do all the weird kind of stuff.

In brief, hypnosis is all about you telling yourself the kind of lifestyle you want to live; whether to lose weight, to drive in an expensive car, to travel around the world, to be disease-free, to sleep better, and more.

How is hypnosis carried out or done?

Hypnosis is carried out in three stages which include the following

1. Induction stage

During this stage, the therapist will have you seated in the chair, begin by explaining to you how hypnosis works for weight loss and they may also go through your goals.

Next, the therapist may begin speaking to you in a soothing, gentle voice to help you relax and focus to make you feel safe. People can follow a memorized script, a recording, or they can be induced by a professional hypnotherapist.

2. Hypnotic state

From the induction stage, you head to the hypnotic state. At this stage, one is calm, focused, mentally, and physically relaxed as well as experiencing the highest level of awareness.

3. Hypnotic Suggestion

Once the patient is at a more receptive state of mind, the therapist then suggests ways to help adopt better eating and exercise habits in order to attain your weight loss goal. These suggestions replace and update the subconscious thoughts.

Certain words or repetition of certain phrases may help with this stage. Your therapist may also help you visualize yourself reaching goals through sharing mental imagery.

To end the session, the therapist will help bring you out of hypnosis and back to your starting state.

Does hypnosis work for weight loss?

hypnosis for weight loss

As a matter of fact, there is no enough research on the effectiveness of hypnosis for weight loss, but what is available indicates positive results and shows that hypnosis really works for weight loss. For example;

A study published in the international journal of clinical and experimental hypnosis indicated that ladies who underwent hypnosis therapy lost weight, had better-eating habits, and improved body image.

A 2014 analysis of the effects of Hypno-behavioral and Hypno-energetic therapy on 60 obese women by scientists in Italy found out that; both treatments improved their weight, body mass index, and eating behaviors.

British researchers also carried out a meta-analysis and realized that hypnosis could regulate the release of hunger and fullness hormones both of which are directly related to weight management.

Having said that, it is important to note that; the individuals behind those success stories also employed other weight loss strategies like reducing the number of calorie intake, increasing sleeping hours, and more.

How does hypnosis aid weight loss?

When you’re under hypnosis, your attention is highly focused, and you’re more responsive to suggestions, including behavior changes that can help you lose weight. With hypnosis, the mind is influenced to change habits such as overeating.

Who should go for hypnosis for weight loss?

Honestly, a candidate for hypnosis would be anyone who finds sticking to a healthy diet and exercise program hard. Not everyone can afford to exercise regularly or follow a healthy diet. But the bottom line is that anybody is capable of undergoing hypnosis.

How many sessions of hypnosis should you go for in order to lose weight?

The length of the hypnosis sessions and the total number of sessions one needs depend on individual goals. Some people may see results in the first 3 sessions while others may require more than that, depending on their body weight,  and whether they have an underlying health condition or not.

What are the health benefits of hypnosis?

Other health benefits of hypnosis include;

1. Hypnosis helps anxiety

Image by Claudio_Scott from Pixabay

Techniques that relax the body like hypnosis help anxiety. With hypnosis, the body’s relaxation response is activated through the use of a phrase or body expressions, slowing breathing, lowering blood pressure which instills overall well-being.

2. Hypnosis helps sleeping disorders

For those of you having trouble sleeping, insomnia and sleepwalking, hypnosis is the way to go. Verbal cues during hypnosis induce a trance-like state so that you don’t notice what is going on around you. This helps you to fall asleep during or after hypnosis.

3. Reduces chronic pain

Hypnosis helps pain-related conditions such as cancer, lower back pain, arthritis, and sickle cell disease. With hypnosis, one is able to cope with pain as well as getting self-control over pain.

According to the study published in the international journal of clinical and experimental hypnotism, it was established that hypnosis by virtual reality software reduced pain in hospitalized trauma patients more compared to standard treatment alone.

4. Helps indigestion symptoms

Many clinical studies have come out in support of the effectiveness of hypnosis on indigestion symptoms such as bloating, constipation, and diarrhea. Hypnosis takes you through relaxation and a soothing sensation to combat indigestion symptoms.

5. Helps to quit smoking

Image by Tumisu from Pixabay

For some of you who want to quit smoking, try hypnosis. First, hypnosis can help you find a healthy, effective alternative and guides the subconscious toward that alternative than smoking. Hypnosis also trains the mind to look at only the bad sides of smoking such as the bad breath. This helps you to overcome the habit.

What are the downsides of hypnosis?

Generally, hypnosis may be safe when performed by a trained therapist. the few downsides include;

1. Health insurance programs do not cover hypnosis. This means that most funds for hypnosis sessions will come from your pocket.

2. There are many hypnotherapists out there with different skills and experiences. This means that finding one who is effective, affordable, and receptive may be challenging.

3. Unfortunately, some people cannot undergo hypnosis fully enough to make this kind of therapy effective. This means that hypnosis cannot work for everyone.

4. Hypnosis may lead to the creation of false memories to the patient which may be dangerous.

Other side effects include;
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Anxiety

However, these can happen when the hypnotherapy sessions are over.

Bottom line

We don’t have enough research to base on in order to determine the effectiveness of hypnosis for weight loss.

In case you want to go for hypnosis for weight loss, carry out enough research and aim for a licensed psychiatrist or else without expertise, hypnosis may be a waste of time, money, and emotional investment.

The surest way of losing weight is diet and regular body exercise. Therefore, basing weight-loss on hypnosis alone may not give us significant weight loss results. To get more from hypnosis for weight loss, consider combining it with other regimens like body activity

we have a wonderful article about exercise for weight loss, find out the various exercises you can combine with hypnosis for better results.


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