Could You Lose Weight by Hypnosis?

By Susanna Sweeney, MSC, MBACP, CHT

The idea to lose weight by hypnosis has become very popular in the last decade or so, and there are countless success stories in the media, like this one here in the NY Post.

lose weight by hypnosisCould you lose weight by hypnosis?

I have written this article as part of a series of articles on weight loss hypnosis so  that you can form a picture if it may be suitable for you. Throughout, you will find links pointing you towards other information worth reading.

Rule out any Medical Conditions

To identify whether you could lose weight by hypnosis, you should first rule out any medical conditions  potentially underlying your weight gain, such as issues to do with hormone imbalance.

If your issues are not of a medical nature, you may benefit from weight loss hypnosis.

See if You Like the Method

If you want to lose weight by hypnosis and have ruled out underlying medical issues, you then need to think about whether or not you like the idea of working with hypnosis.

First of all, you will have to become familiar with the philosophy underlying weight loss hypnosis and naturally you would have to like the approach.

There are a few more articles I suggest you check out:

What to Expect if you Lose Weight by Hypnosis

Generally speaking, people for whom weight loss hypnosis is suitable, fall into two categories.

The first group are people who want to lose up to around stone in weight whose weight issues simply come down to a lack of conscious eating. The second group are people who come with a bigger weight issue that may have been going on for many years and is underpinned by emotional eating issues.

Below you will find two sets of questions that can help you identify where you fall on the spectrum. Finding out where you fit in is important because that will determine what your weight loss hypnosis treatment should focus on and how it should be structured.

Those who overeat because of a lack of conscious eating would typically answer ‘no’ to the majority of the following set of conscious eating questions, and ‘no’ to the majority of the set of emotional eating questions below.

Those with emotional eating issues would typically answer ‘no’ to the majority of the conscious eating questions, and ‘yes’ to the majority of the emotional eating questions below.

Both groups can lose weight by hypnosis.

See below which group you belong to.

lose weight by hypnosisIf you are an emotional eater and concerned about your weight gain, you can lose weight by hypnosis.

Conscious Eating Questions:

  1. Do you pay attention to the correct portion size for you?
  2. Do you eat slowly?
  3. Do you consciously taste the different foods you eat and pay attention to enjoying every bite?
  4. Do you always stop eating when you are full?
  5. Do you consciously think about your body’s nutritional requirements?
  6. Do you consciously refrain from using food as a reward?
  7. Do you have good mechanisms in place to deal with food cravings?
  8. Do you feel you are overweight?
  9. Do you weigh yourself regularly or worry about your weight?
  10. Do you get regular exercise?

The more questions you answered with 'no', the more you may benefit from weight loss through hypnosis.

Emotional Eating Questions:

  1. Do you ever feel you are eating to meet emotional needs?
  2. For example, do you ever overeat or eat the wrong type of foods because you feel bad and hope they will make you feel better?
  3. Or, do you find yourself suppressing negative emotions such as anger, fear or sadness by eating?
  4. Or, do you ever find yourself eating out of boredom or loneliness?
  5. Do you feel you picked up bad eating habits in childhood?
  6. Do you have difficulties being happy with your body?
  7. Do you ever find it hard to stop eating once you start?
  8. Do you ever compulsively eat sweets, sweet foods or deep fried foods?
  9. Do you ever miss your body’s signals as to when you are full?
  10. Do you sometimes feel powerless over your eating habits?

The more of these questions you answered with 'yes', the more you are on the emotional eating side of the spectrum. Find out below what that means.

Weight Loss is a Complex Issue

From these two sets of questions you can begin to appreciate that weight loss hypnosis views issues with excess weight as a complex issue that involves the mind and emotions as much as the body.

We start developing our relationship with food during infancy where we learn how hunger feels in the body, how to ask (cry) for food, how to ingest food (fast or slow), how to sense when we have enough, and feel satisfied after a meal.

As our relationship with food develops throughout childhood, we often pick up bad habits from parents and carers. One such bad habit, which often features in weight loss hypnosis is the habit to get emotional needs met through ingesting food. Bad habits can become deeply ingrained and can be hard to shake.

Weight loss hypnotists, in designing a treatment protocol, will want to have a detailed consultation with you to evaluate where you fall on this spectrum and what your particular needs are. The design of your program will be based on this consultation.

If you veer towards the conscious eating side of the spectrum your practitioner will recommend working with suggestion hypnosis to help your subconscious mind around getting on top of cravings, motivation for exercise, starting to eat slowly and really listening to your body’s signals.

If you veer towards the emotional eating side of the spectrum, as well as the above issues, your practitioner will likely also recommend some work involving life regression hypnosis, where present day issues are resolved by revisiting the source experience and dealing with associated emotions.

Many different kinds of past experiences can underlie becoming overweight. Some examples for what the source experience may look like which resulted in finding consolation in foods:

  • If you did not feel loved when growing up
  • Being or feeling neglected or abandoned as a young child
  • If you felt you didn’t really matter growing up
  • If you persistently felt not enough when growing up
  • If there was a shock in your childhood such as the sudden loss of a parent or carer
  • Parents or carers modelling emotional eating
  • Parents or carers modelling perpetual dieting

Using regression hypnosis, your weight loss hypnotist will help you revisit source experiences in an easy and very doable way so you do not become overwhelmed. They will help you make sense of those experiences, re-interpret them from an adult’s perspective and feel the associated emotions in hypnosis trance where they are bearable so that you can let them go and move on with your life.

lose weight by hypnosisCould you lose weight by hypnosis? Find out here.

How Many Sessions Will You Need When You Lose Weight by Hypnosis?

It’s important for you to understand from the start that weight loss is a complex issue which does not resolve overnight. As a rule of thumb, the more you veer towards the emotional eating side of the spectrum, the more long term you can expect the work to be.

On the plus side, hypnotherapy does not involve the same regular expenditure that you would have to plan for typically weekly psychotherapy sessions.Typically, your practitioner will suggest regular but infrequent sessions. They may be spaced fortnightly or, later on, even monthly.  Later sessions may be shorter as they may be focused on maintenance.

Depending on how much weight you want to lose, plan hypnosis into your life for at least a few months, and for up to two years. Remember, the approach is to lose weight gradually and naturally, at your own pace. Give your mind and body time to adjust at every step.

What About the Cost?

Yes, hypnosis can be more costly than other weight loss programs.

The first thing to consider, however, is what you get from weight loss hypnosis compared to other weight loss programs. If your preference comes down on the side of hypnosis, there are a couple of things you can do to make hypnosis workable for yourself financially.

  • You can make hypnotherapy more accessible for yourself by spacing out the sessions. In that way, the financial commitment is spread over time.
  • Some practitioners run weight loss classes. Classes can be a good way of saving on the expenditure involved in hypnosis. But for long term success, if you are an emotional eater, do plan for a number of individual sessions alongside so that the emotional issues won’t be neglected and you can lose weight by hypnosis for good.
  • You could also consider working with self hypnosis for weight loss.

I hope this article has helped you to form a picture whether or not you think you could lose weight by hypnosis. Please do check out the other articles in this series to get a complete picture of what weight loss hypnosis has to offer.


More About Weight Loss Hypnosis

Weight Loss Through Hypnosis- What Science Says

Hypnotherapy is often portrayed as unscientific. In this article I have  gathered the available scientific evidence that backs weight loss through hypnosis as a valid and valuable treatment...

Hypnotic Weight Loss- How to Get the Best from Your Treatment

This article advises you as to what you can do in order to get the best out of your treatment if you have decided to lose weight through hypnosis. Some of this is bound to surprise you...

Could You Lose Weight By Hypnosis?

Find out if weight loss hypnosis is suitable for you, what the underlying issues may be and what to expect from a program of hypnosis.

Gastric Band Hypnosis

Gastric band hypnosis has become a popular alternative to actual surgical intervention. But does it live up to expectations? Find out what it does and what results you can expect.

Weight Loss Hypnotists- How to Find the Right one for You

It can be very daunting to look for a practitioner of a therapy you have never tried and heard mixed things about. Let me hold your hand with some sound advice...

Weight Loss by Hypnosis- 7 Benefits for You

Find out how you could benefit from weight loss by hypnosis.

Quit Smoking Without Gaining Weight

Find sound advice and guidance if you want to quit smoking without gaining weight.

Self Hypnosis for Weight Loss- 7 Huge Benefits for You

Find out what benefits self hypnosis for weight loss has on offer for you compared to conventional weight loss programs and compared to attending weight loss hypnosis.

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