When I started using meditation for weight loss, I changed the way I think about food and developed the “Weight Loss Mindset”. This alternative way of losing weight helped me to shred over 100LBS.
What’s more, I found it easy to use meditation to lose weight.
Unlike some other techniques, such as intense diets and insanely challenging exercise routines, I found it simpler and more enjoyable going the mindful-route.
Today I am a mindfulness instructor, and I would like show you how to use meditation for weight loss. Meditation techniques can help you lose weight quickly and keep the weight off forever.
It is a much more mental approach that looks at your attitude towards food and your thought processes.
Science has proven that your weight loss mindset is one of the most important thing when it comes to successfully losing weight.
Using Meditation For Weight Loss Changes Your Mindset
One of the best things about using meditation for weight loss is that it gives you the weight loss mindset, which is a conscious shift.
Do you have the right mindset for weight loss? I didn’t. I used to think of food as a pleasure. I would comfort eat when stressed. I would count calories and always go over target. I had the wrong attitude and wrong thoughts for losing weight.
That was until the day I started meditating. Meditating changed my thought processes and helped me to get in the right mindset for weight loss.
You will know your mindset needs adjusting if you are:
- Fighting cravings for junk food
- Counting calories
- Struggling with emotional eating / comforting eating
- Eating food as a coping mechanism
- Struggling to keep on target with weight loss
- Mindlessly eating while watching TV / checking your phone etc. [here is How To Eat Mindfully]
If you do those things, you need to change your mindset.
Start using weight loss meditation techniques.
Meditation is one of the alternative ways to lose weight that actually work.
Meditations for weight loss help you to:
- Control your cravings
- Relax your mind
- Give you insight so you are more aware of how your mind influences your diet and exercise habits
- Let you change the way you think about food
- Boost motivation for weight loss and exercise
Train Your Mind, Not Your Body
As a meditation teacher I’ve helped a lot of people lose weight with meditation. And I get a lot of questions on social media and in person.
One comment I often hear is this: “Weight loss is about diet. How can meditation help you lose weight?”
Weight loss meditation techniques help you by training your mind.
You health begins in your mind.
Cravings. Habits. Temptations. Will power. It’s all mind.
The best meditations for weight loss help you to get the right mindset. That makes it easier to lose weight.
Before you eat a chocolate bar, for example, you will experience a mental process that leads to the action of eating. You may well have seen a chocolate bar in your mind or imagined the taste of a chocolate bar. This mental process is the trigger, the cause of your desire for chocolate. By changing this desire at its root level you learn to retrain your mind, to completely eliminate your desire for chocolate, even to replace that desire with desire for something healthy.
Scientific Benefits Of Meditation For Weight Loss
Science proves that there are more than 100 benefits of meditation for health, many of which help with getting in shape.
If you’ve ever wondered about the benefits of meditation for weight loss, let’s take a look.
1: Lower your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR)
The Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) is the amount of energy in calories that a person needs to maintain body functioning. BMR effects your shape and fitness because the higher our BMR the quicker we use calories.
Scientific research (1) shows that people who practice a combination of meditation, yoga and pranayama (breathing techniques used in yoga) have a higher MBR, which helps them get in shape quicker.
2: Biological assimilation
Biological assimilation is the process through which the body breaks down nutrients and then assimilate those nutrients into the body.
Healthy food assimilation improves our overall well-being and helps us to get in shape and stay fit.
However, when we are overly stressed, the body is less able to properly assimilate food and is more likely to store food as fat.
Meditation improves digestion by helping with the assimilation of food and by reducing stress.
3: Stop food cravings
Why can some people control cravings where others struggle?
The answer lies in a part of the brain called the anterior cingulate cortex. This is the part of the brain that governs self regulation. When this part of the brain is strong it is easy to control cravings.
Neuroimaging studies reveal that meditators have more activity in this part of the brain. Because of this, meditators can control cravings more easily than other people.
4: Stop stress, which helps with comfort eating
So much of both weight gain and weight loss comes down to how stressed we are.
Scientists and health gurus (like Deepak Chopra and Dr Oz) tell us that when we are stressed we pack on pounds.
The statistics confirm it:
38% of adults say they overeat because of stress.
33% of adults says they comfort eat to stop stress.
Weight loss meditation techniques stop you from feeling so stressed all the time. And this helps us to have a healthier relationship with food.
5: Mind Body:
Meditation helps to bring our minds and our bodies closer together.
We know from Ayurveda that the body and mind are one. And to be healthy both the body and mind must work together. That why you will never get in shape until your mindset is correct.
Weight loss is often caused by a disconnect between mind and body.
Consider this scenario: You tell yourself you need to exercise but you stay sitting on the couch. There’s a disconnect between what is happening in your mind and what is happening in your body. You need your body to actually respond to your mind. And the way to achieve that is to heighten your mind-body connection. We’ll look at an exercise to heighten your mind body connection in a moment.
6: Calm and Focus:
Weight loss meditation techniques hep you to feel calm and to stay focused.
This is huge because it helps you to beat your cravings.
A turbulent mind constantly flutters from one thought to the next, thinking chocolate, burger, coke etc. A calm mind doesn’t experience these cravings. A calm mind is in control and does not give in to cravings.
7. Mindful eating makes you more aware
Jean Kristeller is professor emeritus of psychology at Indiana State University. She states that mindfulness meditation changed the way she thought about weight loss.
“It was more than a light bulb moment,” she said.
After hearing famous mindfulness teacher John Kabat Zinh discussing mindfulness, she decided to start a programs called Mindfulness Based Eating Awareness Training [visit site]
The program teaches people to be more aware of the food they are eating.
In one exercise, participants slowly eat a raisin while paying very close attention to the flavor and sensations of eating.
“People are stunned by the exercise,” she says. “They see that if they eat a few raisins mindfully they can enjoy them as much or more than if they eat a whole box.”
Mindful eating helps with diets because it makes you more aware of the process of eating.
Mindfulness makes you aware of the thoughts that initiate your desire for food. It helps you to recognize how you feel about different types of food, and what happens in your mind when you eat. By being more aware of the process of eating you empower yourself to change that process.
7 Best Weight Loss Meditation Techniques
Pratyahara is a technique in which we reduce the negative information entering the mind, and increase the positive information.
If for instance, you spend too much time around a negative person, who stresses you out and makes you comfort eat, you can distance yourself from this individual, which will help reduce emotional eating.
Alternatively, if you find that some of your friends inspire you and make you want to lose weight, you can start to hang around with those friends more, which will increase your motivation for weight loss.
Pratyahara is the process of reducing negativity and increasing positivity. Take a look at the link above.
Applied to getting in shape, this essentially means that you take-in more positive information and stimuli that helps support your weight loss journey, and take in less of the information that is preventing your from getting in shape.
2) Traditional Weight Loss Meditation Techniques
Mindfulness is about being aware of what’s going on in your mind.
A lot of people are not aware of their mind, which is why their thoughts affect them so greatly.
For instance, they think “I need to eat chocolate” and automatically go and get chocolate.
A mindful approach would be to say, “Okay, that was just a thought about chocolate, just a thought, it isn’t real, it’s just in my mind I don’t really need chocolate.”
Distancing yourself from your cravings in this way gives you power over them. This helps you to stop giving in to cravings.
- For this exercise you will need 1 piece of comfort food / junk food that you always eat. Your favorite one.
- Go somewhere quiet and peaceful.
- Put your junk food on the table / ground a couple of feet in front of you.
- Sit comfortably with good posture.
- Relax for two minutes
- Focus your mind 100% on the sensation of your breath coming and going through the space between your nose and mouth.
- Take 25 mindful breaths.
- Bring to mind your favorite junk food (the one that’s in front of you).
- Focus your mind on the impression of this food in your mind (don’t look at the actual food, focus on the mental impression of the food).
- As you focus your mind on the food you will notice that certain thoughts arise. You will have specific thoughts about the food. It is these thoughts that form your negative relationship with food. We need to get rid of these thoughts.
- To get rid of the thoughts, every time you experience ANY thought, SEE the thought (imagine you are looking at yourself experiencing the thought, as though you were spectating yourself). Next, say to yourself, “This is just a though. It isn’t reality.”
- Finally, imagine blowing that thought away from you until it fully disappears.
- Pick up the food.
- While holding the food in your hand you will once again experience different thoughts.
- Take a minute to notice the types of thoughts you are experiencing.
- Again, tell yourself that they are only thoughts. They’re not reality, they’re just delusions in your mind.
- Now, in order to continue this exercise I’m going to be using the example of a chocolate bar, but you can continue with whatever piece of food you have.
- Open the chocolate bar. Study it. Meditate on it. Focus your mind 100% on the food, on the colors, the smell, the texture and every other aspect of the food.
- Again notice the types of thoughts you are experiencing. Tell yourself “These are just thoughts. They are not reality.” Imagine those thoughts floating off into the distance.
- Eat the food slowly. Bite into it, hold it in your mouth and stop. Don’t swallow. Meditate on the flavour.
- With the food in your mouth, be aware of your thoughts. Tell yourself, “These are just thoughts. They are not reality.” Imagine the thoughts floating off into the distance.
- Continue until the food is gone.
With the weight loss meditation technique above, you’re changing your thoughts and feelings about food.
This helps you to eliminate the negative thoughts you have about food.
This technique teaches your mind to get rid of the unhealthy and illogical thoughts and feelings you have about food. In other words, you’re teaching your mind to see the fact that food isn’t relaxation, nor fun, nor luxury, nor anything else. Food is food.
When you did the exercise above, you may have been a little surprised during the exercise when I told you to remove ALL thoughts, even good thoughts. You may have thought at one point (for instance) “Food is nutrition. I should eat healthily.” This is a good thought, isn’t it? So why get rid of it?
The reason for getting rid of all thoughts and not just the bad ones is that thoughts exist in our mind as something of a mesh. Thoughts are like a really badly tangled piece of string. Thinking one good thought doesn’t necessarily lead to another good thought. When you think “I’m going to eat healthy,” your next thought is just as likely to be “No I probably won’t because I have a bad diet” as it is “Yes, I’ll eat healthy and exercise.” Diet meditation techniques help you to remove those thoughts.
This is a powerful exercise that will completely change the way you feel about your favorite food. It will totally alter your mindset towards junk food. And it will massively reduce your cravings and improve your diet.
4. Visualisation meditations for weight loss:
Visualizations are meditation techniques that involve the imagination and visual imagery. When you perform a visualisation meditation you create a mental picture of who you really want to be. You then meditate on this picture, which makes you feel that your goal is achievable. This massively boosts your motivation to exercise and lose weight.
Try this method”
- Sit quietly for a few minutes and simply focus on your breath. This will help you to relax.
- Now visualize your entire body the way you want it to be. What would you look like? What would you feel like? What would be different about you? Imagine these things in detail
- Now tell yourself how you are going to get there. What steps are you going to take to get in shape?
- Now visualize yourself going through the steps above until you reach your desired body type.
5. Best Guided Meditation For Weight Loss
There are lots of free recordings, Youtube videos and podcasts that have guided meditations for weight loss.
The best guided meditation for weight loss is by Michael Sealey. It’s called Hypnosis for Weight Loss (Guided Relaxation, Healthy Diet, Sleep & Motivation)
6. Mind Body Meditation For Weight Loss
This method heightens your mind-body connection, enhancing your self-control. It is a modified body scan meditation.
1) Lie down or sit down with good posture.
2) Close your eyes and focus on your breathing. Take 10 deep breaths through your nose.
3) We are going to guide consciousness around the body. this will heighten the mind-body connection. Begin by at your feet. Simply be mindful of your feet. Focus on them. Observe and feelings inside or outside your feet. Explore the sensations there. Get in touch (mentally) with your feet.
4) Now move up systematically through your body. Move from feet to ankles to lower legs to upper legs to pelvis to abdomen to chest to shoulders to arms, hands, back up to your shoulders, then your neck, face and finally head.
5) At times you will notice that there is tension in parts of your body. If this is the case, imagine breathing warm air into that area while asking your body to relax. This will alleviate the tension.
6) Now be aware of your entire body and the sensations flowing through you. This will heighten your awareness.. The next time you experience a craving for food you will be more aware of the sensation that precipitates the craving. This awareness will give you more self control.
7. Visualisation Meditation for Weight Loss (Dhyana meditation technique)
This is a very powerful weight loss meditation technique. It will help you lose weight and stick to your diet.
In this visualisation, you are going to create a very believable mental image of a perfect you.
You’re going to see yourself as everything you want to be. You’re going to train your mind to recognise what you truly want.
This is going to turbo-charge your weight loss.
1) Sit comfortably with good posture. Make sure your spine is in proper alignment.
2) Close your eyes and focus on your breathing for a few minutes. Relax.
3) This is the fun bit. You are going to systematically build a mental picture of yourself as the person you truly want to be. And don’t you dare go short on me. I want you to visualise yourself as being absolutely amazing. I want your body to be the exact body you want. Everything perfect. Are you ready?
4) Begin with your face. What would your face look like? See it. See your beautiful skin. Notice how there are zero wrinkles. You look beautiful. Imagine it in DETAIL.
5) Your upper body. If you’re a guy you might want a six pack. If you’re a girl you might want a slim and slender look. Imagine your perfect upper body.
6) Legs: Toned? Smooth? How do you want them? Imagine it in detail.
7) Everything else: Fill in any other details of your ideal body.
8) Imagine that this perfect you is doing something amazing to do with weight loss. You’re achieving something you can only achieve once you’ve succeeded in losing weight. Perhaps you’ve just run a marathon. Perhaps you’re standing on a stage with people looking at you. Whatever it is you wish you could achieve, imagine it in detail.
9) Put everything together so you are imagining your perfect self accomplishing something amazing.
10) Affirmation: What would your perfect self say after accomplishing this amazing thing? Choose an affirmation and imagine saying it LOUD in your head.
11) It’s vital to imagine your perfect self in detail. You need to truly see your perfect body and truly imagine yourself achieving that amazing thing and truly hear that positive affirmation in your head.
Using meditation for weight loss when you’re depressed
The majority of people who overeat do so because they have a negative relationship with food. Perhaps the best example of this is people who comfort eat.
For comfort eaters, food isn’t just nutrition, it’s a survival mechanism they use when they feel depressed or stressed. They feel stressed, they want something nice, they eat some tasty food, it makes them feel better. But then they feel bad for eating too much. This makes them aware of their diet. They then feel stressed and depressed. So they eat something nice again and the vicious cycle begins all over again.
A person suffering from comfort eating associates food with depression, stress and relaxation. Food is the thing they go to when feeling depressed. It helps them to relax. It’s all a mental pattern. And many of these people will even experience depression after losing weight!
The same is true for people who overeat for other reasons.
Some people associate good food with a luxurious lifestyle. They want the luxurious lifestyle so they have to eat lots.
Other people associate food with socialising.
None of these associations are healthy.
Food is food, nothing more.
The trick to having a healthy relationship with food is to remove your illogical thoughts and beliefs about food and to see that food is just nutrition. Eat to nourish your body, not for any other reason.
You can achieve the perfect body and mind you’re after. The weight loss meditation techniques we’ve looked at will help. Of course this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try other techniques as well. I personally combined my meditations with my love of movies, and I watched tons of movies about weight loss for inspiration!
Enlightened people like you and I know that weight loss begins in the mind.
The mind’s ability to stop cravings, to motivate us to lose weight, and to support us through stressful times… those skills are worth far more than anything you can get at the gym.
The right mindset creates the right body.
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