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Think yourself thin
Your thoughts influence feelings and behaviour and therefore the state of your body. of this can make an important difference in treating problems of overweight. That is one thing we have found out in the Mind/Body Medical Institute.

A 37-year-old woman, 50 pounds overweight, told us she was on a diet that she'd been given in a weight-loss group. It was sensible and well-balanced. It was also very . When she followed it perfectly she felt good. The problem was that she felt so bad when she from it, even just a little.

A typical comment would be: 'Yesterday I was good all day. I followed the diet, but when I came home from work I was carbohydrates. I knew I shouldn't, but I had a bagel with cream cheese. I ate it so quickly I didn't even it.'

She added, 'I often eat in the evening when I feel lonely, or to the stress of the workday. But it doesn't help.'

There were several problems here. She believed that by going off diet, even a little, she was a hopeless case and might eat more. She even had the common misconception that carbohydrates are bad for your weight.

We told the woman she had to develop strategies to alleviate stress at work. To with her loneliness we counselled her to have dinner two nights a week with friends. As a result, she found that even nights when she was home alone she felt better. Once she started to face specific problems at work and at home, she stopped using food to fill a it could not fill.