Today I am going to be talking about one of the most common questions I get in my clinics – what can I take to help me lose weight? What supplements work? What are the natural options? Can’t I just take a pill?
Before I answer these questions for you today I want to step back a bit and explore why people ask me these questions in the first place. I think if we look at these questions I often see a common ground which is people are looking for a quick fix. We are all guilty of this, myself include where we project and think that the change required is too great and we can just take the latest sexy looking supplement on the health food store shelf and all will be well. But I think we all know the truth, there is no quick fix. If there was – we would all know it by now. It was not a quick and easy problem that caused the gaining of weight, it was a complex interplay of many factors inside and outside of us, and hence the solution must be holistic as well. And the weight loss industry has perpetuated this myth that there is a quick fix because it sells products, that is all there is to it. If you believe that a pill or 4 week course will change you then of course you will buy it. But it won’t, it never has and it never will. At least for 97% of people. We are like livestock to the weight loss industry, but it is time we break free.
So in the spirit of breaking free, I want to bring us back to how our brains work. In video 3 on how we can hack our brains and minds I showed you some studies that indicate that overweight people internalise the negative language and stigma around weight loss. One product of this is that when we are constantly bombarding our brain with negative language it goes into a stress and fear response. When the brain is in that mode it does two things which are partly the reason we are so desperately seeking a quick fix or pill. The first is we get tunnel vision automatically and unconsciously we fail to step back and look at the bigger picture. This makes sense from an evolution point of view because if we are being chased by a tiger the best thing our brain can do is become hyper-focused on one thing – escape = find a tree or a big stick, a single solution that will help us survive. So when we are stressed and internalising negative thoughts we search for an external single solution, i.e. a pill. But we must remember that there is no tiger, we can change our thoughts, we can step back and realise we have many options and a single solution is not the answer. The second thing our brain automatically does is further highlight potential threats which also makes sense from an evolution point of view because if we just ran from a tiger we are going to be extra alert for the next one! So we have to be aware that you may in the space sometimes and you will be susceptible to the effects of weight loss advertising.
So naturally the way to manage this is alter where we can our mindset and environments, increase relaxation and meditation, enjoy life where we can, connect with others, move in a way we love, and so on. See how it keeps coming back to this holistic approach? When our mind and brain is in a safe place, it will be more immune to the effects of marketing and will be more able to find the solutions.
So that is the reasons we are looking for a quick fix. In my opinion the most natural thing you can do is not take a highly processed supplement but rather take a holistic approach that covers our body, minds and social and environmental surroundings and empower ourselves in the journey of growth and connection. Not only will this help you reach your goal of a healthier weight but also help you enjoy and be rewarded by the journey there.