Sally has spent the last 30 years bouncing from diet plan to diet plan, watching her weight decrease and increase over and over again. Nothing has worked in her quest for weight loss.
Jim has tried to put off weight over the years, knowing that his blood pressure would likely improve if he made positive health and lifestyle changes, but after a month or two he loses interest and goes back to his old ways.
Victoria is disciplined with her exercise routine and eats healthy, but she finds that when she feels sad, discouraged – or experiences any emotion positive or negative – she tends to run to food and derail her efforts.
Noah began putting on weight at a young age and now wants to excel in high school sports but finds the conditioning and weightlifting incredibly difficult because of the excess weight. He’s physically active but struggling to maintain a consistent and healthy eating plan.
Why is it that some people lose weight easily and others spend years trying to lose weight and never achieve it in any kind of sustainable way? In a one-year study of 160 adults by Tufts-New England Medical Center, researchers studied individuals who followed four popular diets.
What they discovered was that it didn’t matter what diet the individual followed, the key to successful weight loss was the individual’s ability to follow that particular diet and only 1 in 4 people was able to stay on his or her specific diet for one year.
What keeps an individual from sticking to a diet or achieving successful weight loss? There could be several things that get in the way such as a major life event or medical condition, however, sometimes it’s the individual’s inner beliefs, emotions, or unprocessed trauma that can hinder weight loss.
While we know that an individual who is a normal weight can be just as unhealthy as an individual who is overweight, research shows us that the health risks for obesity are incredibly high. Being overweight can lead to an increased risk of cancer, heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, kidney disease, and more.
Therefore, losing weight is not just a vain pursuit for some people, it’s critical to overall health and wellness.
Christian weight loss counseling can help individuals identify, process, and break free from emotional obstacles to weight loss. In additions to one’s own emotions, counseling might help an individual identify other obstacles impeding weight loss, including:
- Past or current trauma
- Social or cultural factors
- Genetic or medical factors
Many large studies have been published about the success of pairing diet and lifestyle changes with cognitive behavioral therapy. These studies show that when used together, therapy and diet result in longer-lasting changes in weight that are more dramatic.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Weight Loss: What Is It?
Cognitive Behavior Therapy is a blend of cognitive therapy and behaviorism. It was developed in the 1960s and is one of the most widely used forms of therapy. Cognitive Therapy looks at how our thoughts influence our feelings and behaviors and work to change individuals’ thought patterns in order to positively influence their behaviors.
Behaviorism is a form of using rewards and consequences to encourage or discourage certain behaviors. Cognitive Behavior Therapy helps individuals become aware of the thought and behavioral patterns and identify whether those patterns are working to help them achieve what they’re working towards or are not working.
This can be incredibly effective with weight loss because we know that emotional eating can be a factor in weight loss as can negative behavioral patterns. If a counselor comes alongside an individual and works with him or her to identify what’s happening when he or she overeats or doesn’t make healthy food and lifestyle choices and then teaches the individual how to self-monitor and change those patterns, it can be effective towards weight loss.
We also know that the Bible is a powerful tool to change our thought and lifestyle patterns, so let us look at some powerful scriptures for weight loss.
Bible Verses for Weight Loss
We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. – 2 Corinthians 10:5
So, whether you eat or drink, whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. – 1 Corinthians 10:31
The Sovereign LORD is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer; he enables me to tread on the heights. – Habakkuk 3:19
I can do all things through him who strengthens me. – Philippians 4:13
Finally, receive your power from the Lord and from his mighty strength. – Ephesians 6:10
You, LORD, hear the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry. – Psalm 10:17
There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it. – 1 Corinthians 10:13
At the same time, the Spirit also helps us in our weakness, because we don’t know how to pray for what we need. But the Spirit intercedes along with our groans that cannot be expressed in words. – Romans 8:26
It trains us to renounce ungodly living and worldly passions so that we might live sensible, honest, and godly lives in the present age. – Titus 2:12
For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. – 2 Timothy 1:7
To put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness. – Ephesians 4:22-24
Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established. – Proverbs 16:3
Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert. – Isaiah 43:18-19
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things, there is no law. – Galatians 5:22-23
Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So, run that you may obtain it. Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. So, I do not run aimlessly; I do not box as one beating the air. But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified. – 1 Corinthians 9:24-27
How Christian Counseling Can Help Weight Loss
Paired with a modality such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Christian Counseling can be highly effective in helping you align your life more closely to God’s word and live out biblical principles. We offer prayer and compassionate counseling that enables us to get to the inner root of many weight loss struggles. We encourage you with scripture while we utilize counseling modalities and techniques, so you have a holistic weight loss approach.
Christian counseling can also help you successfully work through emotional eating by learning how to process emotions and take those emotions to God rather than turning to food for comfort or celebration.
If you would like to work with a Christian Counselor for weight loss or learn more about how Christian Counseling can help you achieve sustainable weight loss, reach out to us by clicking here.
“Citiscan”, Courtesy of Owen Beard, Unsplash.com, CC0 License; “Frowning Plate”, Courtesy of Thought Catalog, Unsplash.com, CC0 License; “Stepping on the Scale”, Courtesy of Alan KO, Unsplash.com, CC0 License; “It is well”, Courtesy of Corinne Kutz, Unsplash.com, CC0 License