CBT For Weight Loss
Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) is a proven talking therapy that can help you manage your problems by changing the way you think and behave, and just maybe is the magic bullet for dieters. CBT for weight loss method really works!
We would love to say that we were the pioneers behind the use of Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) in the weight loss arena, but to be honest, that accolade belongs to Judith Beck, the daughter of Aaron Beck, believed to be the creator of CBT.
When we started on our journey, back in 2004, developing the Gastric Mind Band® (GMB) treatment, we focused mainly on the use of Hypnosis as the prime intervention; we quickly discovered that the approach fell a long way short of our, and our clients’ expectations.
Over the last twelve years the GMB treatment has matured through continual upgrades, but whilst we were always delighted when clients achieved their desired weight loss result, it was the clients who failed that always piqued our interest. We knew that the treatment provided to each client was identical; we needed to understand just why it worked for some, thankfully the majority, but not for all.
It was the continual revisiting of past clients’ files and the collected data that fuelled the constant improvement and enhancement of the treatment, which now bears little resemblance to the original format.
Whilst Hypnotherapy still plays an important part in the GMB treatment, it is, in all honesty, a minor component in what is now a very ‘busy’ fusion of a number of, mostly empirically proven interventions and therapies.
CBT as a primary method has gradually become the ‘core’ therapy, the one around which all the others are woven during our treatment. It continues to surprise us, along with other professionals in the weight loss arena, that CBT-based approaches fail to receive the level of media exposure that they probably deserve. It has been widely accepted for a number of years as the treatment of choice, when helping those suffering with depression and also a range of addictions, but in helping those wishing to permanently lose weight, it really shines.
Losing weight, reducing the calorie/energy input is pretty simple maths that most children understand; simply create a 500 calorie per day deficit for a month, and you will lose four pounds. Sadly, as many past dieters will confirm, it is never quite that easy, it can be complex; there are so many other factors, which play a part in achieving utopia for dieters: steady permanent weight loss.
CBT for Weight Loss, Using elements of CBT to help our clients grasp the difference between their Wants and Needs around food, and helping them understand just how far apart our Thoughts are from Facts can often be a challenge. The understanding of our core beliefs around food and the effects of continual learning/programming during childhood: “clear your plate, then you can have a treat,” all play a major part in the process of change.
We start each clients GMB treatment by working with them to complete our own Forensic Weight Loss Questionnaire, it runs to close to 100 questions. It has been designed to ensure they revisit and gain a deeper understanding around the often complex, cognitive issues they have with food. The process often uncovers a long list of negative thought issues that they have either learnt or been taught. In a later session we re-position the answers provided reflecting back and questioning their reasoning processes. Our own twist on CBT Pause Button Therapy, also referred to as TactileCBT plays a major role in our treatment, one of the main uses is in training the client to ‘freeze’ time and consider the consequences of their actions. The GMB process along with PBT was selected for inclusion in professor Philip Zimbardo’s (Stanford University) 2nd World Time Perspective Conference at Warsaw University, the clinical evidence as presented can be viewed here.
CBT of course is now the most highly researched talking therapy in the world: at its core is the understanding that it is never the event that’s the problem, rather it is our belief about that event. In the weight loss field, this is an easy, and very rewarding approach to understand. Read Martin’s paper on the Origins of Obesity on this site.
As a little taster of just what’s involved in the CBT weight loss element of the GMB treatment, watch the short animation below…