GET MOTIVATED TO HIGH-INTENSITY EXERCISE

     Do you often feel that you just don't have time for a thirty or even ten minute block of time for exercise?  If you are trying to lose or maintain weight, you may feel that it's of no use to try since you simply don't have time.  A recent study of more than 4,500 adults reported by Jessie X. Fan, PhD, professor of family and consumer studies at The University of Utah in Salt Lake City found that lack of larger blocks of time for exercise did not mean it was hopeless to try to lose or maintain weight.

    The researchers in the study found that intense, short bouts of moderate to more vigorous exercise was sufficient to help people lose or maintain weight.  Brisk walking every day or stair climbing were considered in the moderate to vigorous exercise category, 

     So no more excuses.  If you are short on time, set a goal of brief periods of as little as one minute at a time of vigorous exercise. If you sit at a desk all day, getting up once and hour to take a quick walk around the block or climb the stairs outside your office may be all you need to lose or maintain weight one minute at a time.  If you need some motivation to start doing brief periods of high-intensity exercise, hypnotherapy can help.  

SLEEP HABITS AFFECT YOUR WEIGHT

    An article published in AMERICAN JOURNAL OF HEALTH PROMOTION reported on a study of 330 students by researchers at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah.  The study compared students sleep habits and their body fat.  The primary finding was that regular sleep habits can help you keep slim.  The researchers identified consistent sleep habits as those in which the subject's bedtime and wake-up time varied by an hour or less each day.  They concluded that people with those consistent sleep habits including bedtimes and wake-up times had less body fat than those whose sleep habits were most erratic.

    The recommendation was that the best amount of time to sleep was six-and-a-half to eight-and-a-half hours per night.  If one of your New Year's resolutions was to go to bed earlier, sleep better or have more consistent sleep habits, hypnotherapy can be a valuable tool to help.  Your sleep habits affect your weight.  Improve them, have less body fat and BE WELL.

CUT THE RISK OF BREAST CANCER

     Lauren McCullough, PhD epidemiologist at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, reported on a study some 3,000 women who exercised moderately for ten hours a week.  The women were both pre-menopausal and postmenopausal. The exercise included gardening and walking both considered in the moderate exercise category.  The conclusion of the study was that the moderate exercisers had a thirty percent lower risk for developing breast cancer than women who were sedentary.  Researchers believe that the risk lowers for those who exercise because in addition to causing the body to reduce body fat, exercise enhances cell repair and may increase antioxidants.

     If you need another reason to start exercising, cutting the risk of breast cancer could be a good one.  If you've been thinking you "should" start exercising but haven't, remember this study was done with women who exercise moderately.  If you need to get started and need some motivation, hypnotherapy can be of valuable tool to get moving, cut the risk of breast cancer and BE WELL.

EAT MINDFULLY FOR YOUR PERFECT WEIGHT

  If you spend lots of time thinking of your next meal or snack, you are not alone.  Chronically overweight people often spend much of their time thinking of food and how and when they will eat next.  Ironically, when they do eat, they shove the food in with very little appreciation or enjoyment.  They get little pleasure from the process of eating.  Instead, they are just shoving in the food.

    Unfortunately, our lifestyles can discourage enjoying our meals or snacks.  We are often busy and in a hurry, so we skip breakfast, snack in the car on the way to work and cram in fast-food while checking messages on our phones.  We are not thinking consciously about what we are eating and get little satisfaction from the food we have just scarfed down.  

    A rushed, hurried lifestyle causes us to skip meals and then substitute with hurried meals and snacks.  Because we do not satisfy the brain's need for the joys and satisfaction of eating, we are soon craving again with constant feelings of deprivation.  Many experts believe one of the reasons French people have less weight problems is because they spend longer amounts of time eating their meals and find joy and satisfaction in their meals so they don't crave snacks.

    When we do eat, our minds are often distracted with personal and work problems, deadlines, and telephone messages and entertainment apps.  It's hard to tell if we are satisfied and full, if our minds are completely preoccupied with mental distractions.  So we may continue to eat because our minds are distracted.

     And we tend to be very fast eaters.  We were raised by parents and caretakers who were always rushed and encouraging children to hurry up and finish eating.  Our first grade school teachers told us to finish up quickly because it was time for the second graders to use the lunch room.  By our teen years, lunches were rushed in order to have more time hanging out with friends during lunch break.  By the time we are adults, eating quickly is the norm.  Even if we are full, our brains have not had time to register fullness, so we just keep right on stuffing in food.

     All of these factors can cause us to eat without awareness.  What can you do that will help you to enjoy food more and actually be satisfied and not continually craving?  The goal is to eat mindfully.  One way you can do that is by not using electronics, watching television or reading a book while eating.  How can your mind know if you are full, if it is totally distracted? Eating slowly to truly savor the taste and getting satisfaction of what you do eat can cause you to eat less.  Put your fork down between bites.  Really focus on what you are eating and it's wonderful taste so you can get true satisfaction out of what you eat and be satisfied with how much you eat.

    Hypnotherapy can help you to eat mindfully as a part of a weight loss session or program.  It can help you to stop cravings, enjoy what you do eat, reach your perfect weight and BE WELL.

LUNG HEALTH MEANS BETTER BRAIN HEALTH

 Still another reason to not smoke, eat a healthy diet, exercise regularly and avoid environmental pollutants such as secondhand smoke.  Charles Emery, PhD, professor of psychology at The Ohio State University in Columbus Ohio,  reported on research on lung function and its influence on brain health.  The researchers followed health date on 832 people between the ages of 50 and 85 for almost twenty years.  They found that reduced lung function  due to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) but also in otherwise healthy adults led to cognitive deterioration.  

   The researchers theorized that reduced oxygen in the blood due to poor lung function could slow down signals between cells in the brain.  If you need to get motivated to quit smoking, exercise regularly, avoid secondhand pollutants or exercise regularly, hypnosis can be a valuable tool to increase your chances for better brain health.

IMPROVING LONGEVITY FOR AMERICAN MEN

   A paper in the journal, HEALTH POLICY, reported that about 150,000 American men in the United States die prematurely each year from preventable causes.  This was a higher rate than in fifteen developed countries.  Among the most identified diseases causing the high rates of preventable disease in American men were diabetes, heart disease and prostate cancer.

    The magazine, MEN'S HEALTH, recommended studying some of the other developed countries which did not have such a high rate of male premature death.  Italian men make heart-healthy eating choices including a Mediterranean diet, olive oil and moderate amounts of red wine.  Italian men also smoke much less than they once did.  Japanese men drink green tea which has been identified as a help in fighting prostate cancer.  In Switzerland, men are much more apt to ride a bike or walk to work.  This activity may be an identifiable reason for the lower risk of diabetes in Swiss men.

    The men in those countries were all making good choices to take care of themselves and their health.  If you or the man in your life are ready to improve the chances for a long, full healthy life, it's time to eat well, quit smoking and even have a glass of red wine or a cup of green tea.  Hypnotherapy can help to make those changes so you can BE WELL.

HYPNOSIS FOR AGE-RELATED LOSS OF STRENGTH

      Most people are familiar with the term "osteoporosis" which describes the gradual age-related loss of bone.  Less familiar to most of us, is the term "sarcopenia" which is the age-related loss of strength, function and bone mass.  Symptoms of sarcopenia include, becoming weak, walking slowly, and falling more easily.  In addition, sufferers of sarcopenia are less likely to recover from illnesses and more likely to die,

   Michael J. Grossman, MD, a specialist in antiaging and regenerative medicine in Irvine, California, writes that this disease "generally starts at age 40.  By the time you're 50, you're losing 1% to 2% of your muscle mass every year."  Besides the symptoms of sarcopenia listed above, those  having this age-related muscle loss have more fat which can produce inflammation causing such chronic diseases as cancer and heart disease. Having less muscle, means a person burns less blood sugar (glucose) so you are at greater risk for developing or controlling diabetes.

    Dr. Grossman recommends a protein rich diet which includes a four ounce serving of chicken, turkey, fish or lean beef.  In addition, he recommends supplements including a daily vitamin D supplement in the 3,000 to 5,000 IU (international units) level,, 1,000 mg (milligrams) of omega- fatty acids with 400 mg of EPA and 300 mg of DHA taken twice daily and if you are exercising, three grams of the amino acid Creatine.  He recommends finding a doctor trained in antiaging medicine and bioidentical hormone replacement therapy to test hormone levels.

    To stop or reverse muscle loss, you should be doing both aerobic and resistance exercise.  Besides walking for lower-body strength, upper body strength can be increased with exercises such as ballroom dancing or playing tennis.  Lifting weights or resistance bands can also be used to strengthen the different muscle groups.

     If you are concerned about losing muscle mass or strength and functioning of your muscles, you may need to get motivated to add these recommendations into your lifestyle.  Hypnotherapy can be a valuable too to strengthen your muscles and BE WELL.

STRESS CAN MAKE YOU FAT

     If you have noticed that you tend to gain weight when you are really stressed out, you're not imagining the correlation. Andrew L. Rubman, ND, and contributing medical editor to DAILY HEALTH NEWS, confirms what you have suspected.  So why does stress make you fat?

    Rubman identifies the culprit as the hormone, cortisol.  When we are stressed, our bodies go into the fight-or-flight syndrome, which is the basis of how our bodies respond physiologically to stress.   The adrenal glands begin to produce the hormone in order to regulate the effects of insulin on blood sugar.  Add in poor dietary choices and ongoing stress can overload the body's system causing weight gain.

    The combination of high cortisol levels and dietary imbalances can be further aggravated by sleep problems and aging.  Chronically, waking up regularly in the middle of night to worry about finances, family or work problems can be an indicator that stress may affect your weight.  Dr. Rubman notes, "This may be your adrenal gland saying, "wake up", there is something wrong with your insulin-cortisol-blood sugar levels.  

    Dr. Rubman suggests a number of ways of managing blood sugar levels.  If you have symptoms of low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) which may include:  anxiety, trembling, heart palpitations, or headaches  or high blood sugar (hyperglycemia) including fatigue, blurred vision, thirst or frequent urination, see your medical doctor for blood and urine tests. Under a physician's supervision, you may be prescribed medications or supplements including chromium, a fiber supplement such as glucomannan and high potency B vitamin 

    If you are concerned about gaining weight or preventing issues such as diabetes and heart disease, it is important to deal with the stresses in your life.  Develop tools to deal with the stresses in your life.  Nurture yourself by allowing your body to relax by mindful breathing or meditation.  Exercise is a wonderful way to deal with stress.  Hypnosis can be a powerful tool to deal with stress, motivate you to improve eating habits and exercise regularly.  Make those changes, deal with the stress, lose the weight and BE WELL>

WHAT TO DO ABOUT SUGAR ADDICTION

    In recent years, sugar addiction particularly to soft drinks has become a common complaint among my clients.  This is not surprising.  A Scientific Statement in the AHA (American Heart Association) JOURNAL CIRCULATION reported that in the 2000s Americans increased their intake of sugar by an average of 22.2. teaspoons.  That is the equivalent of 355 calories most of it consumed in soft drinks.

    The statement identifies a large number of health problems caused by this excess sugar including:  weight gain, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, high triglycerides, low levels of HDL cholesterol  which is the good cholesterol and increased risk for cardiovascular disease which includes stroke. Based on research at the University of Colorado Denver Health Sciences Center who analyzed health and diet data from more than 4,500 people who had no history of high blood pressure, the America Heart Association issued the following guidelines.  1) Women should eat no more than 100 calories of added sugar per day or six teaspoons.  2) Men should eat no more than 150 calories of added sugar or nine teaspoons.  Since one twelve ounce can of cola contains eight teaspoons of sugar or 150 calories even one soda is too much for a woman.

    Jacob Teitelbaum, MD, author of BEAT SUGAR ADDICTION NOW! (Fair Winds) says, "Eating too much sugar is an addiction.  Sugar gives you an initial high, you crash several hours later, and this leaves you wanting more sugar."  He has several recommendations that can help including: 1) using sugar substitutes such as stevia and erythritol which are combined in the products PureVia and Truvia, 2) Getting seven to nine hours of sleep which he says "optimizes energy, decreases appetite and slashes sugar cravings, 3) drinking water to stay hydrated, 4) cutting out excess caffein, 4) taking a multivitamin/mineral supplement since low levels of nutrients can trigger food cravings and 5) Eating whole foods including vegetables, whole grains, beans and meat which do not trigger sugar cravings

    If you need help making these changes, hypnosis can be a valuable tool. Beat your sugar addiction and BE WELL.

WHAT TO DO ABOUT BELLY FAT

     Did you know belly fat is dangerous even when you have kept your overall body weight under control?  A study of more than 350,000 people published in THE NEW ENGLAND JOURNAL OF MEDICINE reported that a large waist can nearly double your risk of premature death.  Excess belly fat results in what we call an "apple" body shape.  Also known as visceral fat, it is stored in the abdominal cavity.  This is dangerous because it can wrap around or even invade internal organs including the heart.

   There are two types of belly fat.  There is soft belly fat and then the hard belly that is often called "having a beer belly."  The hard beer belly is the more dangerous of the two because people with hard belly fat have high levels of the inflammation marker C-reactive protein (CRP) which is a risk factor for heart disease.  Among other serious health conditions linked to belly fat are:  diabetes, migraines, cancer, dementia, and lung problems.

   So measure your waist just below the navel.  A good goal for women is 35 inches or less and 40 inches or less in men.  Unfortunately, there are no known ways for spot reducing just visceral fat.  Healthy overall weight loss includes:  1) eating healthy foods and watching portion size, eliminating junk and processed foods.  Void processed carbohydrates such as snacks, white bread, fruit juice and beer.  All these can cause a rapid spike in blood sugar that may increase belly fat. 2) Add aerobic exercise such as a 20 minute walk daily.  This will burn calories, reduce fat and increase metabolism. 3) Set your thermostat lower.  New research finds that sleeping in a cool temperature could increase your body's energy expenditure resulting in weight loss.  

    If you add these behaviors into your daily life, you should boost metabolism and lose weight including  the visceral belly fat that is so dangerous.  If you need motivation to eat well and add the aerobic exercise, hypnotherapy can be a valuable tool.  Use hypnosis, get rid of that belly fat and BE WELL.

HYPNOSIS FOR WEIGHT MANAGEMENT

     Have you ever thought about hypnosis as a tool for weight management?  A University of Connecticut study conducted in 1997 found that hypnosis can play a significant role in managing weight.  The researchers reported that test subjects who used only weight-loss methods such as diet lost an average of six pounds during the testing period.  Those who also used hypnosis lost an average of fifteen pounds.  In addition, those who used hypnosis kept the pounds off for two years following the therapy.  

    I always tell my clients, hypnosis is not magic.  If you continue to do exactly the same things, you are going to get the same result.  But hypnosis can be a great tool to motivate behavioral changes to include exercise and eating and nutrition habits. The hypnotherapist's suggestions must be personalized to meet each individual client's needs.  Each hypnotherapist has there own way of establishing those needs.  I require an hour and a half clinical interview with the client to learn about personal and family behavior around eating and movement.  We discuss the client's motivation to make a change and create a plan of how they want to eat, drink and move that will allow goals to be met.

    The hypnosis session will include positive, beneficial suggestions based on the clinical interview and the client's plan.  If you want to get motivated to make changes in your weight or changes in your eating or exercise behaviors, hypnosis can be a valuable tool to BE WELL.

   

HYPNOSIS AND SOCIAL CONTAGION

   You may not have heard the term "social contagion" before.  But I expect you have observed its influence.  New scientific studies are identifying how our family and friends can influence the choices we make.  Some choices are quite obvious like choosing where we live or where we work.  But less obvious choices are also often the result of the impact of the people we are around .

     Choices like whether we stay married or divorce, whether we exercise and eat well or become obese, whether we have professional success or failure are often highly influenced by those around us. In fact, research indicates that behavior and emotions are extremely contagious.  This might help to explain why before the Great Recession millions of people bought houses they could not afford.

    Nicholas A, Christakis, MD, PhD, was named one of one hundred most influential people in the world by TIME magazine in 2009 for his work on social contagion.    With his colleague, political scientist, James Fowler, PhD, he researched the issue of overeating and obesity which has been identified at epidemic levels in the United States.  He found that nine states in the USA report that more than 30 percent of their residents are obese.  Christakis and Fowler used a study that had been done in Framingham, Massachusetts over thirty years.  This tracked the details of thousands of people and their connections and how they interacted.  The researchers found that the spread of obesity followed a pattern similar to the way the flu spread.  The Framingham study indicated that if you had a family member or friend who was obese, your risk of becoming obese was 45% higher.  Even if a friend of a friend was obese, it increased your risk of obesity by 25%.  So the health of your extended social network is a key factor in determining your health.

     The researchers went on to study other issues moving through human networks like suicide, sexual practices, back pain and suicide.  They found that there were "Three Degrees of Influence"  That choices and actions could be influenced clear out to friends' friends' friends. Issues like divorce are considered so personal but the ripple effect of social contagion found that if you have a friend divorcing, that increases the likelihood that you will divorce by around 147%.  

     Christakis and Fowler found that behaviors such as smoking and overeating, can be influenced by friends who live hundreds of miles away.  Obviously individual thinking, cultural upbringing and genetics all contribute to our behavior, but this research found that social contagion is also a power influence.  If you socialize with family and friends who are obese, it can change your idea of what is acceptable body size.  If you are around heavy smokers or drinkers, you may allow yourself those options as well.

    So what can you do with this information?  Do NOT abandon friends and family.  Know that the benefits of being connected are far more important than the costs.  The researchers found that the most consistently happy group of people were those who had lots of friends.  But  remember your actions and choices can influence others as well.  So ask what you can do for those in your group of family and friends.  When you quit smoking, start exercising or lose weight,  your influence will benefit not only you, but your friends and family as well.

      If you need help to make those changes, hypnosis can help you quit smoking, lose weight or get motivated to make some other positive change.  Use hypnosis and BE WELL.

 

Appetite Increased by Lack of Sleep

     Another reason to deal with chronic insomnia - a study by researchers at King's College London and Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden, which was published in THE JOURNAL OF CLINICAL ENDOCRINOLOGY AND METABOLISM found that a lack of sleep increases appetite.  The researchers compared the studies of brain imagery in men when sleep-deprived and when well-rested.  Sleep-deprived men who had been well-fed were shown images of high-calorie foods.  These images showed that activity in areas of the brain that control appetite were higher than those of well-rested men.  Those same men who were well-rested found the high-calorie foods much less appetizing.

     Check out some of my earlier posts on this blog about ways to deal with insomnia including hypnotherapy.  Although the study was done on males, it is likely true for females as well.  If you are having trouble with appetite, an underlying trigger may be lack of sleep.  Hypnotherapy can be another tool to sleep better, control appetite and BE WELL. 

Keeping those New Year's Resolutions

   It's now been a few days since many of us made those New Year's resolutions.  Others may have decided it's just not worth taking the time to make resolutions since they rarely are in effect within just a week or two. If you have already slipped in your resolutions or didn't even make any, you may find hypnotherapy can help.  I always tell my clients, hypnotherapy is not magic.  But it can be a great tool to help you get motivated and do what you want to do. If resolutions like losing weight, eating better, starting to exercise or getting rid of a bad habit like smoking were on your list, don't give up.  Instead, find a hypnotherapist to help you get motivated to follow through and BE WELL.

 

DIET DRINKS AND CARDIOVASCULAR RISK

    Are you still drinking diet sodas or diet fruit drinks?  Another study has confirmed risks for consuming these drinks.  Ankur Vyas, MD,a cardiovascular diseases fellow at University of Iowa Health  Care, in Iowa City, Iowa, reported on an observational study of almost 60,000 women who had an average age of 62.  He found that drinking two or more diet drinks per day resulted in a 30% greater risk of heart attack or stroke than those who rarely or never drank diet fruit drinks or diet sodas.  It is theorized that the reason for this result is that these drinks may cause metabolic syndrome and weight gain which raise the risk for heart disease.

    Thinking about giving up diet drinks?  Hypnotherapy can be a valuable tool to let go of this old bad habit and BE WELL. 

RISK OF MEMORY LOSS FROM OVEREATING

    In 2012, researchers at Mayo Clinic, Scottsdale, Arizona, presented the results of a study on overeating at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology in New Orleans.  The study was of 1,233 people between the ages of 70 and 89.  The major finding of the study was that overeating increases memory loss in that age group.  A comparison was made between those who ate more than 2,000 calories per day and those who ate less than 1,500 daily calories.  The researchers found that the risk for mild cognitive impairment (MCI) was significantly higher in the higher consumption group. Those who ate more than 2,000 calories daily were almost twice as likely to have mild cognitive impairment as those who ate less than 1,500 calories per day.  MCI increases the risk for dementia and Alzheimer's disease.

    If you are 70 or more, know you are risking future memory loss by high consumption of calories and want to make a change, hypnotherapy can be a valuable tool to create and maintain that change.  Eat less, lessen your risk of memory loss and BE WELL.

USING HYPNOTHERAPY FOR METABOLIC SYNDROME

   A study published in DIABETES CARE reported that more than half of the participants older than 65 had metabolic syndrome.  This syndrome is a combination of symptoms including high blood glucose levels, high blood pressure, high triglyceride levels, low HDL (the good) cholesterol and an apple shape large waist circumference.  Usually a diagnosis of metabolic syndrome is given when you have three or more of these factors.

      These risk factors means you are five times as likely to develop diabetes, twice as likely to develop heart disease or a heart attack and twice as likely to have a stroke. Those are scary statistics.  So what can you do to protect yourself?  Since only that apple shaped waist is obvious, the first step is to find out what your other risk factors are.  So see your medical doctor to have your blood pressure read and blood work done to include, blood glucose levels, cholesterol levels and triglyceride levels.  

     If you are diagnosed with a problem with high blood pressure or in your blood work, what can you do to bring down the risk? Genetic components to risk can't be changed.  If you have a parent or sibling with diabetes, your risk is higher.  Aging is another risk for developing metabolic syndrome that you can't control.  

     But there are things you can control such as your physical activity level, your diet, and your weight.  Your medical doctor may prescribe medications to improve blood pressure, cholesterol levels and control your blood glucose. What can YOU do?  Get more active - a reasonable goal is two and a half hours a week.  You can cut down on processed food especially those high in sugar and salt.  Instead, increase your intake of vegetables, fruits, lean meats, whole grains and low-fat dairy products.  Cut the extra belly fat by adding that exercise and cutting calories.

    If you need help to get motivated to take care of yourself by exercising, making healthy food choices and losing weight, hypnotherapy can be a great tool.  A hypnotherapist can help you to avoid the health risks of metabolic syndrome and BE WELL.

 

REFRAMING: MAKING OLD SITUATIONS NEW WITH HYPNOSIS

      Have you ever been to a yard sale or flea market and seen an old oil painting that you liked?  Perhaps the frame is beautiful and appealing.  But often an old painting has an ugly dark frame that makes the painting dreary and unattractive.  If you love the painting, you might buy it and decide to reframe the painting in something brighter and more appealing. 

      Sometimes situations and circumstances in our lives our limited by the frames of our thoughts, ideas and attitudes.  Hypnotherapy can be a valuable tool to change the perception of the situations and circumstances to make positive changes.  You can use hypnosis to reframe a situation by reframing your thoughts about it.  It can help you to have a new positive perspective about a situation in your life. 

     A qualified hypnotherapist can help you reframe situations that you have been unable to change by yourself.  With hypnosis you can reframe your choices to choose to eat healthy foods, be comfortable speaking in public, stop smoking, exercise more or sleep through the night.  Make your life brighter and more appealing by using hypnosis to reframe old ideas, attitudes and thoughts that are keeping you from having the life of your dreams.

APPETITE CONTROL THROUGH EXERCISE

     James LeCheminant, PhD, and associate professor of exercise sciences at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, did a study of 35 women who had brain scans to figure out how their brains responded to pictures of food.  One group of scans was done after the women walked briskly on a treadmill for 45 minutes.  A second study was completed of their brains without having the women exercise first.  LeCheminant's study found that when the women had just exercised, the brain responses to the pictures of food, which were considered a marker of appetite, were reduced.  Dieting to control your weight can be difficult if you are not exercising.  Reduce your desire to eat by doing moderate exercise.  And remember, a hypnotherapy session can be a great motivator to get moving!