In the last year or so, publicity about the fitting of a gastric band around your stomach to help you lose weight has heightened and many people have undergone the procedure, despite its £7,000 plus price tag. Now imagine that if you were overweight and hypnotised, you could wake up convinced you had had the procedures and could experience all the sensations of the gastric band, including the steady weight loss without actually having had the surgery.
For one British-run clinic in southern Spain, they have been finetuning hypnotherapy combined with cognitive behavioural therapy to do just that. The patient undergoes six relaxing and pleasant sessions over a two week period, including one deep hypnotherapy session where they have the gastric band virtually-fitted. Just like when you have a real gastric band fitted, the patients even re-visit the clinic over the ensuing months to adjust the virtual gastric band to suit the weight loss rate agreed.
The use of hypnotherapy and CBT has been publicised widely as ideal therapies to combine, each underpins the other, working in conjunction with each other for some amazingly effective results in all sorts of cases. Even the BBC has run several documentaries on the use of the two therapies. Indeed, the medical profession has now come round to accept the idea of the mind-body link, and it may well be the answer to our global obesity issue.
In the case of the virtual gastric band, if nothing else, the client saves the £7,000 fee, the hospitalisation and surgery, no risks of MRSA, anasthetic or DVT (deep vein thrombosis) and more. As hypnotherapy grows in popularity and becomes more widely accepted, because people now feel it is not taboo to talk about it, we may well be seeing a real increase in acceptance from the medical profession.