Have you've ever talked to your doctor about losing and you may have gotten some advice like "eat less, exercise more" or "decrease your calories?" Not only is this advice obvious and unhelpful, it is also discouraging to someone who has done all of those things and may have lost weight only to gain it all back and sometimes more.

A new study from Duke University found that when doctors gave generic advice like "exercise more," patients actually lost less weight than when they were given specific instructions. "Just telling somebody to lose weight or improve their diet or physical activity didn't work," said professor of psychology at Duke Gary Bennett. "The doctor should instead encourage patient participation in a specific program."
The reality that losing weight is not as simple as "eat less, exercise more" or "decrease your calories." Our country is experiencing an epidemic of being overweight and obesity and there are no easy solutions. However, what we do know is there needs to be a fundamental change in a person's lifestyle to make a change.
As a clinical psychologist and hypnotherapist, I tend to view emotional eating, weight issues and obesity as a mental health issues. Let's face it, everything we do in our lives we do first with our minds. If your mind is not in the right place it will be next to impossible to lose weight. People that emotionally eat when they are sad, anxious or using food as a coping skill are not going to be able to "eat less, exercise more" or "decrease your calories." It is just that simple.
Next time you or someone you love are looking to lose weight and become healthier, consider the weight issue as a symptom of your mental health and seek appropriate treatment from a trained professional.
At Healthy Lifestyles Tampa Bay, our focus is to help people change their lifestyles. Once you move away from an unhealthy lifestyle to one that includes eating good healthy foods, exercise and being mentally healthy, true weight loss can occur. Doctors are not trained to treat the complexity of losing weight since it is not "eat less, exercise more" or "decrease your calories." If you want to truly change you weight and health think about making a lifestyle change.
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