Hypnotic Gastric Banding is a relatively new procedure, a safe, non-surgical alternative that is becoming increasingly popular among those who want or need to avoid the surgeon’s knife.  Celebrity hypnotherapist Paul McKenna has recently published a book complete with CD and DVD so that people can perform their own “DIY” hypnotic gastric band operation.

I have enormous respect for Paul McKenna: I still have a dog-eared copy of his 1993 book “The Hypnotic World of Paul McKenna” with its sparkly silver front cover and a photo of a much younger-lloking man (with hair!). His Hypnotic Gastric Band book is easy to read and contains lots of useful, practical information. But what it doesn’t cover – because no DIY book can – is the emotional root causes of obesity. Why do people hold onto excess weight? Why don’t diets work? Why is it that, even when someone does exactly what their personal trainer tells them in the gym, and eats just the right food in tiny amounts, the weight refuses to shift? I would suggest it’s because at some deep, unconscious level, there are unresolved issues, traumas that have not been got over, that person is not “whole”. That’s why my work with obese people starts from that angle – I work from the inside out, not from the outside in.

It is great news that someone with the profile of Paul McKenna has published a book about Hypnotic Gastric Banding. In it he says, “A hypnotic gastric band is simply the most powerful way to launch you into a lifetime of healthy eating and maintaining a thin, healthy body.”

I would take issue with him on the use of the words “thin” and “healthy” together there – do I hear the voice of his publisher in the background? Thin doesn’t always equal healthy and vice versa, and to me the goal should definitely be “healthy” rather than running after this modern Holy Grail of being thin.

Other than that, I agree that a hypnotic gastric band is very powerful, and can change your life. But only if you have successfully dealt with the underlying emotional issues too.