This week, 13th to 19th January, is National Obesity Awareness Week and the goal is to help people better understand obesity and the simple ways in which it can be tackled. Research indicates that, by 2050, half the population of the UK will be obese, and that this will be costing some £50 billion a year in health care and related expenses.

For many people, trying to tackle obesity takes them down the road of various NHS programmes covering nutrition and exercise, and ends with the possibility of Bariatric Surgery – a gastric band or a gastric by-pass operation. This is a Catch-22 situation. The people who need those operations are, by definition, obese and carrying a lot of excess fat. That makes it difficult, if not downright dangerous, for doctors to perform the operation because of the strain on the heart.

It is very sad that we even have to have a National Obesity Awareness Week, but I applaud the initiative and its goals to make people more aware of the dangers of obesity and to put them on the right track with sensible advice regarding nutrition and exercise. With a typical modern high so high in fats, salt and sugar, and so much time spent sat in front of one type of screen or another, it is not hard to see at least some of the obvious reasons for the problem.

I often work with clients who are anything from overweight to seriously obese: some have been refused Bariatric Surgery and have come to me to discuss the possibility of a Hypnotic Gastric Band. In my experience, these people have been told they are fat, and lazy; that they eat to much and exercise too little; that they are costing the NHS a fortune and it’s all their fault.

When someone like this comes to see me I start from a very different perspective. I want to hear their story, I want to know about them as people. Together, using deep relaxation and by talking to the client’s unconscious, we explore and uncover the real root reasons why he or she is holding on to that excess weight. We re-integrate the parts of that client that have been “lost” or “abandoned” in times of trauma, to make the client “whole”. And we talk to various parts of the body to establish what is really going on, and how best to improve the overall wellbeing of the client. If, at the end of that, the client and I agree that a Hypnotic Gastric Band would be the final, finishing touch, then we do that: it is a safe, non-intrusive alternative to Bariatric Surgery and the results are enhanced by the fact that those original emotional reasons for holding onto the fat have been dealt with. Job done.

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