According to the researchers, people who want to lose weight will be greatly helped by the so-called visualization of their appearance in a thin state.
Simply put, if you are overweight, but you decide to lose weight, you need to imagine yourself as thin, fit, agile and athletic as often as possible. And it will really help you lose weight much faster than without this method.
In English, this method is called "functional imagery training" (FIT). For this method to work correctly, people need to not only imagine the necessary pictures in front of their eyes, but also think about how they will feel in a "new" body. How they will walk, exercise, dance, etc.
An interesting experiment was conducted by scientists from the University of Portsmouth (UK). During the year, they observed two groups of people who were overweight and wanted to lose weight.
In group 1, where only motivational conversations of a weight loss specialist were used, people, on average, lost only a little over 600 grams per year and lost almost nothing in waist circumference.
In group 2, where people were recommended to imagine their body as slim and fit as often as possible, people lost an average of 6, 3 kg and lost 9 cm in waist circumference.
All people in both groups were volunteers with a body mass index over 25 (up to 24 weight is normal, 25 is overweight, and from 30 onwards, the degree of obesity is already beginning). A total of 141 people took part in the study.
The lead author of the study, Dr. Linda Solbrig, says that they first showed people from group 2 a lemon slice and asked them to imagine how they squeeze juice from it, how they taste the lemon, how they touch it, and so on. This was to educate people to use the method correctly.
Next, people were asked to imagine how their lives would change if they got thinner. What they can do, what they could not do before, or what they can do with ease, which at the moment causes them a lot of difficulties due to extra pounds. Also, people with the help of a computer program were visually shown how they would look in a slender body.
All participants initially received two sessions of communication with the group methodologist. The first hour was held with each participant individually. The second one took place after a while for 45 minutes by phone. Then, every two weeks, the participants received another 15 minutes of conversation by phone, and then these conversations were repeated for another six months every 4 weeks.
After 6 months of the experiment, both groups said they felt better, but the FIT group was much better. After another six months, during which the participants were no longer given any consultations, the indicators of the second group increased even more.
The conclusion of the researchers was that not only conventional means such as diet or physical activity, but also the emotional attitude and the right motivation are of great importance for losing weight.
“It’s fantastic to see that people have lost a lot more weight just by using their imaginations. In fact, unlike most methods of losing weight, our consultants did not give them any advice on diet or exercise. People were free to do whatever they wanted,”says Solbrig.