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Hypnotherapy for Natural Weight Loss versus Gastric Banding Surgery and Hypnobanding

Surgical gastric banding is a medical method of physically restricting food intake for the treatment of obesity. The popularity of surgical gastric banding led to the invention of “hypnobanding”, virtual hypnotic gastric banding, cheaper and physically safer. Both methods cannot withstand the comparison with hypnotherapy for natural weight loss, which simply uses the power of the mind to restore natural body functions. 


Why would anyone choose a restrictive and invasive medical intervention over the empowering freedom of losing weight by enjoying natural eating? Why limit hypnosis to mimic the medical procedure, implementing virtual mutilation of the body? It seems insane when you understand the power of the subconscious mind and what can be achieved in hypnotherapy.  


The physical aspects of weight loss are simple from the logical point of view. We need to ensure that we consume fewer calories than the body needs so the body uses its natural storage, turning fat into energy. The difficulty lies in overcoming the mental factors and implementing this simple physical rule. 


Obesity and being overweight is usually a mental issue, with the exclusion of some rare medical conditions. Any weight loss program will fail unless the psychological factors are treated and resolved, and hypnotherapy is the best tool to assist in this process. This should be followed by learning healthy living principles, nutrition and exercise. The next step is to physically reduce energy intake; although the previous steps are essential for long term success, there is no weight loss unless eating patterns are changed.  


The medical industry offers a very popular method of physically restricting food intake – the surgical procedure called gastric banding. This method involves the surgical placement of a band around the upper stomach, creating a small pouch which restricts the amount of food that can be consumed. The patient’s food intake is physically limited so, usually, if there are no medical complications, weight loss follows. 


The gastric band method is advertised as the safest surgical method designed to fight obesity by restricting physical food intake. However, the risk of serious medical complications is still high, especially long-term risk, with one-in-three patients having late complications and one-in-five requiring a major operation during a seven year period [1] following the initial surgery. Gastric banding is expensive, but funding can be arranged so it has become very popular as it is widely advertised by the medical industry.   


The essence of the gastric band method is to physically restrict food intake; it in fact assumes that the person cannot take responsibility for their behaviour and must be physically constrained. I’ve heard about other similar methods that were used about one hundred years ago – a kind of dental procedure that wired the patient’s jaws together so they could not eat. There were also special clinics that operated like prisons, making it impossible to eat.  


Gastric banding works the same way as these prisons: not very well in the long term. Research [1] shows that the success rate is only 40% after seven years and, in this research success means losing more than 25% of excess weight. For example, if a patient’s original weight was 120 kilos and the maximum healthy weight for this person is 70 kilos, the procedure counts as a success if the patient weighs 107 kilos. The research does not indicate how many patients actually lose all their excess weight and stay within their healthy weight range. 


Hypnobanding is the mental placement of a virtual gastric band in hypnosis. The implementation of the virtual gastric band closely follows the medical process, but as this method does not involve physical surgery it completely eliminates the medical risks associated with a surgical procedure. The hypnotic band virtually restricts the amount of food which can be consumed, producing the same physical symptoms as the real gastric band. Can this be called hypnotherapy?


Hypnotherapy is the therapy performed in hypnosis which allows us to utilise the unlimited resources of our subconscious mind to make desired changes on every level of our existence – emotional, mental and physical. 

Hypnotherapy offers much more than medicine, which is limited to physical, usually authoritarian and restrictive, interventions. Hypnotherapy is empowering, promotes freedom and self knowledge and allows restoration of natural balance on the body level.  


The idea of using the power of the subconscious mind to restrict food intake by creating a gastric band is simply insane. The implementation of the virtual band uses the connection between the mind and the body to virtually deform the body and create the illusion of the physical symptoms of such deformation. How empowering is that? It may seem beneficial, but only in comparison to surgical gastric banding.  


The psychological factors of obesity need to be solved in parallel with any physical model of weight loss. Hypnobanding is usually performed by hypnotherapists who offer much more than just virtual implementation of the gastric band, so I would expect the success rate to be not as low as in the surgical model. However, the idea of virtual gastric banding results from a misunderstanding of the power of hypnosis and the natural body functions. It works by restricting the freedom, the same way the physical gastric banding does, instead of using the freedom of free will to learn and implement the natural joy of healthy eating by simply connecting with the body. 


Hypnotherapy offers a much more effective and empowering solution to physical weight loss.


In hypnosis, the mind connects directly with the body; in hypnosis, a person can directly ask the body to start using body fat for energy, with immediate results; in hypnosis, a person easily restores the other natural body–mind connections: natural hunger when the body needs food, natural cravings for healthy food, and the natural feeling of satisfaction when the body has had enough food. These are the natural functions of the body. In our culture, these connections between the body and mind are usually lost in early childhood.


The natural connections between the body and mind can be restored by a skilled hypnotherapist in a single hypnotherapy session. The joy and freedom which comes with the implementation of natural healthy eating accompanies the boost in energy that comes from the increased metabolic rate. It leads to natural enjoyment of physical activity. This is a natural method, restoring the way the body works, so it is implemented much easier than any virtual body deformations. Weight loss follows easily and is permanent.  


1.Suter M, Calmes J, Paroz A, et al. A 10-year experience with laparoscopic gastric banding for morbid obesity: high long-term complication and failure rates. Obesity Surgery. 2006;16: 829-835.

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