Tackling Obesity in the UK

Our size and our weight continue to receive attention from health professionals in the western world generally.   A glance at the “Lose Weight” section on the NHS website reveals a bewildering array of information – all perfectly reasonable – on the subject.   Because the issue is so serious, and comes at an enormous cost to the NHS (circa £4.3 billion a year) as well as other life areas, there is a concerted effort to raise awareness of the consequences of being overweight or obese.  The forthcoming Olympics are also harnessed to raise awareness of the connection between good health and exercise; the hope is that more people will be inspired to take up sport or other forms of exercise to promote good health.

BMI (body mass index) is the indicator which is used to establish whether someone is overweight or, more seriously, obese.  In truth, many people who are overweight are cognisant of the situation but for a variety of reasons are unable to do something about it.   The respected medical journal, The Lancet, has a number of interesting articles relating to obesity, its causes and the health issues associated with it.  Diseases resulting from obesity include cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, liver and kidney damage and some cancers.    Clearly, these outcomes come at a cost not only to the individual but also to the state.  The UK government have outlined this problem and reports  that, “The latest Health Survey for England (HSE) data shows that in 2009, 61.3% of adults (aged 16 or over), and 28.3% of children (aged 2-10) in England were overweight or obese, of these, 23.0% of adults and 14.4% of children were obese.”  To distil the statistics, this suggests and more than six out of ten people in England are overweight or obese.  This figure reflects the situation in the western world generally and the numbers have continued to increase in recent years.   The article goes on to say, “Some studies have shown that severley [sic] obese individuals are likely to die on average 11 years earlier than those with a healthy weight,”

The contributing factors involved in being overweight or obese are as diverse as the consequences.  Again, the causes can start in the womb and habits become reinforced by lifestyle and diet choices during childhood.  Socio economic position is also a key factor in weight problems, with poorer families being overrepresented amongst those who are overweight.

Because the problem is increasing, it is worth looking at what could be an effective approach to dealing with the issue.  The Therapy Lounge, based in London, recognises that being overweight is a consequence of overeating and that there are subconscious factors at work, which prompts the individual to consume unnecessarily.  The Therapy Lounge weight loss hypnosis treatment plan uses NLP (neuro linguistic programming) and CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy) to retrain the mind so that it no longer produces the unconscious desire to engage in destructive habits.  Retraining, or reprogramming, the brain is nothing new.  Most talking therapies, in one way or another, set out to bring about a change in the mindset in those they set out to treat.  Because being overweight has such a negative impact on general health, dealing with it is essential for all concerned, including our children and all those generally in our care.