How Psychologists Help You Lose Weight

According to the Centers for Disease Control, over 93 million adults and 13 million children are obese. In Arizona, 25% of adults are obese and 64% are overweight. The number of people who are overweight and obese have risen significantly over the years. Several factors contribute to weight gain, including diet, exercise and psychological factors.

Living a sedentary life, eating an unhealthy diet, and using food to manage negative emotions are primary reasons why people gain weight. A lot of people understand that they need to exercise more and eat healthy; however, addressing the psychological aspects of weight loss are essential to effective, long-term weight loss.

Weight Loss Counseling with a Psychologist

Health Psychologist are experts in assisting people make behavioral and lifestyle changes to achieve their weight loss goals. Dr. Mazzei is a Health Psychologist and has helped many individuals achieve their weight goals. She has experience working in a medical clinic, as well as her own private practice.

Losing weight involves significant behavior adjustments. Dr. Mazzei specializes in weight loss and provides psychological therapies targeted at effective weight control. She works with children and adults struggling with weight and associated medical conditions, such as diabetes and chronic illness. Additionally, therapy may address emotional eating and food addition issues.

How Therapy Works with a Psychologist

When you first meet with Dr. Mazzei, she will ask you about your history and concerns. She will try to get a better understanding of your lifestyle, such as your eating, exercise and sleep habits. Determining factors that influence your diet, such as stress, unhealthy habits, negative body image, and unhelpful beliefs will be targets of treatment. Together, you will develop a customized treatment plan. Dr. Mazzei will work with you on a timeline to achieve your goals. During each session, you will review your progress, address any concerns and develop new tools.

After a couple sessions, most patients begin to lose weight and feel better. The length of treatment will vary depending on how much weight you want to lose and how well you are doing on your weight loss journey. People who have severe anxiety, depression, eating disorders or chronic health conditions may require longer treatment.

Weight Loss Therapies

Dr. Mazzei relies on evidence-based therapies in the weight loss program.

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT): This therapy addresses the negative belief system and behaviors associated with weight gain. Changing unhealthy behaviors, thoughts and emotions will help you make better lifestyle choices for sustainable and long-term weight loss.

Mindful Eating: Mindfulness training has been shown to help people lose weight. Engaging in mindful eating will help you manage through cravings and develop a healthy connection to food.

Hypnosis: For those interested in trying hypnotherapy, hypnosis has been shown to be an effective therapy for weight loss. Hypnosis alters your subconscious belief system to instill better food habits. Hypnosis can be incorporated into your treatment for one or multiple sessions.

Food Tracking: Keeping track of your food in an app., such as My Fitness Pal, is an essential component of weight loss therapy. During each session, you will review your food diary to identify any triggers, cravings and successes. Food diaries take little time to maintain and provide an effective way to monitor food intake, as well as exercise. This tool has been shown in studies to help with weight loss.

Nutrition Education: Learning more about what you eat and how food impacts your health is a critical factor in maintaining a health weight. Diets rich in plant-based, whole grains have been shown to be the healthiest. Eating less sugary, processed and animal-based foods will not only help you lose weight, but achieve overall improved health. Dr. Mazzei will provide you with resources so that you can learn about nutritious eating and help you make better food choices.

Body Composition Tracking: Dr. Mazzei will take your body composition at each session This specialized equipment measures your weight, body fat, and muscle and water density. Weight can fluctuate and is not the only factor that should be considered in weight loss. How much fat you are losing while maintaining muscle are also important measurements.

What are the Costs?

Dr. Mazzei charges for each session. In some cases, you may be able to use your insurance to cover the costs of treatment. Additionally, if you have a health care spending account, the cost of sessions are reimbursable.

How to Get Started with Weight Loss Counseling

If you are ready to start losing weight and feeling better, contact Dr. Mazzei today to schedule an initial consultation. Dr. Mazzei’s office is conveniently located in Chandler. You can reach her at (480) 448-6755.