Many times each year there is yet another new diet, a celebrity endorsed weight program or a miracle new dieting drug that effects your appetite. These will often work for a short period of time which is probably attributed to the Hawthorne Effect.
The Hawthorne effects comes from a series of psychological experiments to do with efficient of workers in a factory. The lights were dimmed and efficiency increased. The lights were made brighter and efficiency increased. Was it because the staff were being observed or the subject of a study? Who knows, it didn’t last. The changes were temporary.
Back to weight loss. Just about any new fad diet, if you’ve bought into it, you are going to be highly motivated to stick to it and initially it’s highly likely you will see and feel some difference. Then its likely that a couple of things are going to happen. I will get to these two in a paragraph or two.
Habits are usually very good things to have, when they serve us well. Good habits usually save time, like you don’t need to look round the kitchen cupboards every time you want to make a cup of tea whilst worrying where the kettle and cups are. You got that one nailed, you know it.
Same thing with habits that you want to change. In this instance over eating, eating the kinds of foods that will store fat or addressing any stressors in your life that are temporarily fixed by comfort eating. Perhaps you are thinking of getting married or going on a holiday.
Why You Want To Lose Weight
The majority of people who want to lose weight are not doing this for health reasons though this is a very good reason. Being overweight can contribute to all manner of problems such as diabetes, high blood pressure, heart problems, high cholesterol you name it isn’t good. All of these indicators are signs of Metabolic Syndrome when any and all of these diseased can occur.
The main reason people seem to want to lose weight is to feel better about yourself, have more self esteem and turn you life around. You may also believe it will change how other people see you – right?
Changing habits requires effort and a steady commitment that is both realistic and enjoyable to do or at least not a chore. This requires long term commitment and patient time.
After The Initial Success
Earlier I mentioned that two things are likely to happen after the novelty diet or program wears off.
In no particular order though this is likely the first one, the weight stops coming off and you hit a plateau and your motivational effort goes walk about.
The habits or reasons ( there are many as discussed above ) creep back in such as the reasons you put excess weight on in the first place having never been dealt with or the stressors in you life increase and old habit come walking back in the door, makes itself comfortable and pops open a tub of ice cream.
The body under life’s changing load is attempting to maintain homeostasis. That means the body within some tolerance likes things the way it is. As weight comes off it is natural to stop for a while as a plateau until an new setpoint of weight minus fat can become normal.
This is where its essential to re-examine your motivations and be patient knowing you are continuing to do excellent work, making your new effortful habits become unconscious habits.
Well Informed Eating
This is a very important point that really can’t be overstated. Knowing which macro nutrients will assist in fat storage is essential. The vast majority of The Obesity Epidemic ( see Zoe Harcombe’s excellent book ) can be traced to dietary change in Western World with the advance of processed foods and lobbyist produced very poor governmental advice.
This ranges from advice to eat starchy foods ( carbohydrate sugar ), avoid saturated fats, mindless empty calories of soft drinks and all of the processed food that is available.
Well informed eating is all about eating whole foods. This has nothing to do with raw food smoothies or juicing everything with yogurt. It is ( ideally preparing ) whole foods such as meat, fish and nuts for protein. Cooking with and including natural saturated fats like butter and a little vegetables for carbohydrates.
The bread and butter of fat storage is bread and butter. The body is not going to be storing fat without the presence of sugar ( carbohydrates ). Eat some sugar the pancreas will release insulin ( the hormone of fat storage ) and any excess energy in your blood glucose will be stored away in two distinct phases.
Firstly excess glucose is converted to glycogen which is stored in the muscles and liver as an energy source which is not fat ( adipose tissue) . When there is no more room in the muscles and liver then and only then is any excess energy being stored away as fat.
When there is not enough circulating glucose in the blood then the opposite happens. Glycogen in the liver and muscles is converted to glucose – and the energy crisis is adverted. Need more energy this is when fat cells give up their winter store and is converted into the much required homeostatic glucose balance.
So clearly in order to be burning fat there is going to have to be an excess load on your body which can range from mental tasks ( yes the brain can use huge amounts of energy ) to walking for exercise. Take your pick.
Simply put weight loss and keeping it off is about eating in ways that are not promoting a great deal of fat storage, doing some exercise all be it mild like walking – I have no desire to be doing circuit training or swimming 50 laps a day and crucially staying motivated.
Newcastle Hypnotherapy can help you get very connected and motivated in both losing weight and more importantly keeping it off and it will require effort on your behalf. There are a lot more aspects of the psychology of weight loss than mention in this article that will be shared with my clients.
If you would like to arrange a free consultation regarding weight loss hypnotherapy in Newcastle follow these instructions to get your questionnaire completed and returned to start making positive changes now.