We only need to turn on the TV or look in a magazine or newspaper to be bombarded with images of the “perfect” body. Women in particular are used to sell everything from food to cars. Popular film and television actresses are becoming younger, taller and thinner.
Magazines are full of articles urging us to lose those last twenty pounds, then we’ll have it all – the perfect marriage, loving children, great sex and a rewarding career.
The diet industry alone is estimated to be worth anywhere between 40 to 100 billion US dollars.
In addition, research indicates that exposure to images of thin, young, air-brushed female bodies is linked to depression, loss of self-esteem and the development of unhealthy eating habits in women and girls.
Eating disorders are a group of conditions, characterised by abnormal eating habits that may involve either insufficient or excessive food intake to the detriment of the individual’s physical and emotional health.
The most common include binge eating, bulimia nervosa and anorexia nervosa. These affect both males and females, although females outnumber the males affected by far. The causes are complex and poorly understood.
Obesity in adults and children is expected to increase, with dramatic health problems as a result, so why is it so difficult to maintain a healthy weight, with all this help available?
There are many reasons, however it’s often unclear. You may not even recognise it, even if it came right up to you and sat down at the dinner table with you!
Some common reasons for being unable to maintain a healthy weight include the following:
|Reasons to overeat||Why|
|You eat to reward or entertain yourself||From the very beginning of your life, you have been rewarded with food for your accomplishments|
|You eat to lessen or negate an unpleasant experience||The pattern is established when very young – food is a comfort when an unfortunate incident happens|
|You eat because you want to be noticed, to gain authority||You may need to command more attention and feel more important by actually taking up more space than those around you – so provoking attention|
|You eat when you need love||Again this starts when very young, now you eat when all you really want is to have someone be kind to you, hug you, touch you|
|You eat because you are afraid||Afraid of what? This could be of sex and relationships. It could be the fear of a partner who is encouraging an unhealthy lifestyle. Another fear could be related to good health – believing that being plump is more healthy than being thin|
There are many tools to tackle the physiological side of weight loss including diet clubs, gyms and pills. However your attitude towards food and eating is just as important if you want to maintain a healthy weight.
This is where hypnotherapy can help. Clinical hypnosis allows us to access the subconscious mind in order to establish new patterns of behaviours, so that food is not used as a source of comfort in times of stress or anxiety.
By using hypnosis, your subconscious will be offered logical and realistic suggestions. These will: