The Mail - 16 September 2014
Woman who was hypnotised into thinking she had undergone gastric band surgery loses three stone (and saves herself the £6,000 it would have cost her under the knife)
A woman has lost nearly three stone since a hypnotist convinced her she'd had a gastric band fitted. Nichola Prichard, 45, of Sebastapol, Pontypool, said she has slimmed down from 14st 1lb to 11st 13lb since being hypnotised. She said the treatment was a far better alternative to paying thousands to go under the knife to have a real gastric band fitted.
Her hypnotist said there's a growing appetite for this treatment. He said he talks clients through every aspect of real-life surgery during his five one-hour hypnotherapy sessions. He said it's a 'visualisation technique' that makes people think they really have had the op. He explains: 'I say: "The nurse is here now, she is taking your blood pressure and they are wheeling you out on a trolley. Now you are going into the operating theatre. They are making incisions for the surgery."' 'Then as the music fades in the background I describe them being taken into the recovery room. When it's over they feel a little tightness, that sort of thing, as if the band has been fitted, but nothing painful.'
As they would be in real life, patients are given dietary sheets and advice on how to change eating habits. They are also given a CD which helps reinforce the hypno-technique over the following weeks. Simon said he allows clients to imagine their own surgeon - who could be anyone from a medic who has previously carried out a successful operation to a fictional character from Harry Potter. 'It is a question of who a person is comfortable with. You can choose anyone to be your surgeon,' said the London hyonotherapist.
'We had one lady who was into Harry Potter who chose Professor Snape to be her surgeon. People have different ideas about hypnotism based on what they see on TV or what they have seen some guy do down the pub. But people certainly don't leave here clucking like chickens,' he laughs.
'Basically it is about relaxation, not control. There are no swinging watches. It is not a state as such it's a sort of relaxation.' Nichola said it certainly worked for her. She's dropped from a dress size 18-20 to 12-14 and can't wait to show off her new figure this summer. She said: 'We are off to the Maldives to celebrate my husband's 50th birthday in November and I'm going to be wearing that little white bikini on the beach.'
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