Why can’t I lose weight?
Trying to lose weight can be a long and frustrating journey. It saps self-esteem and increases stress. Perhaps you’ve tried a hundred different diets. You might lose a bit of weight, but then it mysteriously returns. And throughout the process you can feel miserable, tired and hungry.
That’s because most diets involve a sense of denial. You want what you can’t have. So the key is to get the thought processes around food to change. And that’s where hypnotherapy can help.
Why do we overeat?
Our prehistoric ancestors were driven to eat whenever they came across food. Their brains could override feelings of fullness and allow them to keep on eating. This was a great survival strategy, as they didn’t know where and when their next meal might be coming.
We’re in the 21st Century now, with fridges full of food, fast food outlets delivering to our doors, and supermarkets round the corner or available on line. In the western world, most of us are in the fortunate position of always having food available. However, our brain is largely unchanged from those primitive times, and subconsciously we are still encouraged to eat food if it’s available.
So are we doomed to overeat? No. Our ancestors were also able to inhibit the impulse to eat, if for instance they needed to ration their food during tough times. And we have that ability too, but this ability is reduced if we’re under stress or our lives are generally not where we want them to be.
Studies have shown that when we’re overweight we produce less “happy chemicals” when eating food, compared with those who aren’t overweight. So the more we eat, the more miserable we feel. And the more miserable we feel, the more we’re likely to comfort eat.
The role of stress
There is a definite link between stress and overeating and this can be explained chemically. Acute (short term) stress causes the brain to produce various appetite-suppressing hormones. For instance adrenaline, which is released in a stressful situation to initiate our primitive flight or fight response, reduces our desire to eat. You’ll know the feeling of acute anxiety (or panic) where your stomach is churning and the last thing you feel like doing is eating.
Chronic (long term) stress) is however a different story. With chronic stress, we produce a chemical called cortisol which increases our appetite. An excess of cortisol favours fat storage over using calories for energy, and this fat tends to be stored in the abdominal region. Abdominal fat also has more cortisol receptors so we actually produce more stress. So more fat equals more stress equals more fat. A vicious cycle.
How hypnotherapy can help
As seen above, overeating is encouraged if we’re feeling down or if we’re suffering from anxiety. Hypnotherapy is a fantastic method of reducing stress and increasing our feelings of positivity, so that we start producing more and more “happy chemicals” and we eliminate the root cause of eating too much. So make today Day One and call ONE LIFE. We’re here to help.