How do you help patient change their mind and thought process in order to be successful with their weight goal?
The mind is the place where everything begins and everything ends. When enlightened consciousness is in our mind we are free to do conscious thinking and make choices to determine our way. Compare this to the digestive system where food is digested and the circulation system where the heart pumps blood. We do not say we are digesting food or pumping blood because these two things happen automatically, subconsciously. Compared to these two systems, the mind gives us the choice to think consciously however ninety-five percent of the time thinking happens subconsciously, out of our control.
How does the use of 'Visualization Technique' help in the weight loss?
Visualization techniques are very powerful techniques to achieve any goals that you have and that is the power of imagination of the mind. We talk about the mind and how we can use it differently and this uses the power of imagination. For example, right now I’ll tell you to please avoid thinking for the next few seconds of the white colored lion sitting in the backseat of your car, in the parking lot. Now the lion is looking for you so he comes out of the car, crosses the parking lot, walks into the clinic, into the waiting room and now he’s in the corridor, about to knock down this door over. Don’t think about it. So now tell me what happened. I told you to not think about the white lion but you saw the white lion in spite of me telling you to not see it. So do you realize what happened?
How do you teach patients to make good food choices?
The most important aspect of weight management is to make healthy food choices. Not just while participating in the weight loss program but throughout your whole life. We try to train patients from the start to use their mind and to help them believe that they can do it, become healthier and make good food choices. An important thing we tell patients is that they use the power of allowance. For example, if they see unhealthy, indulgent foods and think to themselves, “I cannot have this.” It means that subconsciously they still want it but can’t have it, that they have not changed their way of thought. We advise you now that instead of thinking, “I cannot have this”, say clearly in your mind, “I can have this, I don’t want this.” So what is the difference here? “Cannot” means you are not allowing yourself and “I don’t want this” is an exercise of free will and free will is the most powerful thing over the mind. When you feel that you have allowed yourself to have something rather than depriving yourself of something that sensation of deprivation goes away.
During the weight loss program, first consultation and in the subsequent visits, we really enforce sincerely suggest living in the present moment. We discussed earlier how the mind functions and how it focuses on the past or future and how our present suffers because of that. Understand that the present moment is the only moment that you have right now, that you have to experience happiness, unhappiness or anything else and that is why you have to value this moment because the universe only exists at this time. Whatever the current time is, the few hours ago in the past do not exist anymore and neither do the next few. The universe only exists in this moment; you are here in this moment, and if your mind goes to the past or future, they do not exist.
How does living in the present moment help with the weight loss?
It is very important to create positive emotions to have positive experiences in the present moment. We try to explain to patients that they are living in this moment in the universe; there is no past or future. You have already learned how to live in the present moment so now your mind is here rather than in the past or the future but this life suggestion may make you restless because now you can only live in this universe. This restlessness is caused by not wanting to live in the present or enjoying this moment and your mind will try to escape this by thinking of the future. This can cause anxiety, stress, and fear which is not healthy for you physical body because it is experiencing these negative emotions as if they were happening right now. Emotions affect the state of the body and the initial negative emotions may lead to increasingly negative feelings as per quantum physics because you are tuning into a negative frequency.
You suggest patients create peace in their life, how does that help to lose weight?
How does learning to forgive help in losing weight?
During the weight loss program, when we discuss the mantra of forgiveness, it suggests that you learn to let go. Grudges and prejudices in your conscious and subconscious mind create a heavy weight that does not allow your spirit and mind to fly. Every day we negatively judge others and ourselves and as we’ve discussed, negative thoughts, feelings, and emotions can hold us back so it is very important to forgive not only others but ourselves as well.
Once a patient has lost weight and can maintain the same methods and attitude, they can control their weight. It is true that it can be very difficult to maintain lost weight because between six months to a year, patients will experience changes to their body. Such changes include a return of ghrelin hormones which cause feelings of hunger and the decline of their metabolic rate due to lower calorie intake. Patients whom are unaware of these changes are likely to experience what is called a fat attack which causes weight gain. We explain to our patients from day one that fat attacks will occur and plan accordingly to prepare for this with what we call a Fat Attack Action Plan.
How do you prevent patients from regaining the weight?
The National Weight Control Registry (NWCR) is the largest prospective investigation of long-term successful weight loss maintenance and was established in 1994 with the purpose of allowing people to register online if they have lost thirty pounds and maintained their weight loss for one year. Registered users are given detailed questionnaires and annual follow-up surveys are conducted to examine the behavioral and psychological characteristics of participants, as well as the strategies they use to maintain their weight loss. The NCWR follows, observes, and records the data of over ten-thousand individuals and from this information we can see the consistency of the people who have maintained their weight loss and replicate the same methods in our patients.