MariasLastDiet.com, the website for women who want to lose weight, issued a white paper today about using psychology to lose weight. The author, Kenneth Schwarz PhD, a psychologist and psychoanalyst and co-founder of MariasLastDiet.com, wrote the paper because of the continuing high rate of weight-loss failure with the current standard formula, Diet + Exercise = Weight Loss.
Dr. Schwarz argues the case for using psychology to lose weight by amending the formula to read, Weight Loss = Dieting + Exercise + Using Psychology, where using psychology is really two factors, adherence and personal change.
Adherence, which research shows is the single-best determiner of weight loss, is sticking to it—the diet or weight-loss program. Adherence is not only sticking to your food plan, though, it is also sticking to what will help you make the necessary personal changes.
Losing weight, especially for women, is never just about the food. It is always about a woman’s psychology as well. Personal change has to do with altering old patterns of behavior and replacing these patterns with new behaviors that are more conducive to successful weight loss.
Dieting and weight loss as they are currently practiced require a lot of self-control and willpower. The use of so much willpower and self-control makes the weight-loss process terribly arduous and ripe for failure. To address this, Dr. Schwarz added another goal to the primary goal of losing unwanted weight, that of using the least possible amount of self-control and willpower to effect change.
Once the goal of making the weight-loss process much less dependent on willpower and self-control is set, what remains is to show how to implement this goal. Dr. Schwarz takes traditional weight-loss issues and, using the principles and practices of psychology, illustrates how to successfully resolve these issues more automatically, and without the need for such self-defeating effort.