Self-Hypnosis for Weight Loss: Can It Help?

Losing weight healthily requires you to eat healthily and exercise, along with making the right choices on when and how much to eat.
There are various things that influence a person’s progress in their weight loss journey i.e. hormones, health, mind, and emotions. This is where the role of self-hypnosis and hypnotherapy comes.

Hypnotherapy alone cannot deliver results but can surely motivate the beliefs and emotional connection that interfere with the ability to modify the diet and exercise routine effectively.

What is Self-Hypnosis for Weight Loss?

Hypnotherapy sessions for weight loss last for 50 minutes to 2 hours. The techniques vary from therapist to therapist.

The Hypnotherapy session begins by finding a comfortable position that can either be seated or lying down. Then the person is asked to close the eyes focusing on a particular object followed by series of deep breathing exercises.

As the person relaxes, the therapist guides him to envision a safe and calming place such as the body of water you enjoy visiting.

Once the person enters a deeply relaxed state of trance, the therapist suggests healthy thought patterns and beliefs replace the unhealthy ones.

Self-affirming words and phrases are also part of the focus.

Does Self-Hypnosis Help with Weight Loss?

There are a few studies that suggest self-hypnosis can help lose weight. However, more studies are required to affirm the same.

Boosts Self-Control

A study was done to know about the role of self-hypnosis in boosting self-confidence.(1) During the study, participants in the two groups received an individualized meal and diet plans.

One group received training in how to use self-hypnosis techniques to boost self-control right before eating.

It was observed that at the end of the trial, the self-hypnosis group had consumed fewer calories and lost more weight. They also observed improvement in the quality of life.

Lowers Body Mass

A small study was done to track the effects of hypnotherapy on 32 people.(2)

After 10 weeks of study with guided hypnotherapy, it was found that the participants had lower body mass index and reduced level of leptin (a hormone associated with obesity).

Additionally, it was found that the levels of adiponectin, a hormone that the body needs to protect you against obesity and type 2 diabetes, had increased.

Combination Therapy

Hypnotherapy can be effective mostly when combined with other effective weight loss measures.

In a research, it was concluded that hypnotherapy is more effective when combined with diet and exercise-based programs.(3)

How Can Self-Hypnosis Help Lose Weight?

How exactly the mind-body connection helps with weight loss needs to be studied more.

The researchers are still studying the effect of hypnosis on weight loss.

Self-Hypnosis Resolves Subconscious Emotional Conflicts

The unresolved emotional balance affects the ability of people of being able to lose weight.

Sometimes people do not eat out of hunger but because of emotions. They are the ones who have undergone trauma, chaos, or abuse in their past. This affects their current attempts to maintain a healthy weight.

Hypnosis can help the person heal the trauma and go ahead on their weight loss journey.

It Corrects Thinking Errors and Detrimental Beliefs

There are certain cultural misconceptions and faulty beliefs that limit a person’s ability to find a healthy weight.

There are beliefs in some cultures that a thin body is a healthy body. This is not true.

One should learn to appreciate the changes in the body after childbirth or as you age. This helps lessen the stress and perfectionism around weight loss goals.

Hypnosis, whether done individually or in groups helps people revise the unhelpful beliefs of associating food with self-reward. It helps you revise the ways you treat yourself.

It Helps Reduce Cravings

Hypnosis can help reduce the desire or craving for unhealthy foods.

There are guided imagery and hypnotherapy sessions that can reduce the dietary choices that could negatively affect the weight loss progress.

Studies show that guided imagery can reduce problematic food cravings.(3)

Other Benefits of Self-Hypnosis

Relaxation and calm are the most common benefits of hypnotherapy, whether it’s self-induced or guided.

It lowers the cortisol, a hormone-related to stress response, in the body. It also lowers blood pressure.

Self-Hypnosis can be an effective way to lose some weight along with diet and exercise modifications. It is important to work with a licensed therapist trained in hypnotherapy.

A supportive therapist can help relax and relearn and improve the odds of success.

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