'Mind Over Matter' DOES Matter When Trying to Lose Weight

At one point or another, we've all heard the 'mind over matter' saying in regards to anything we're attempting to do in life, including lose weight. But do we really stop to think about what it means? Is our mind really that powerful that is can overcome 'matter'? And if so, what do we mean by 'matter'?

In most cases, the 'matter' in 'mind over matter' is anything we need to overcome or work through to achieve our goals in life, be it weight loss or winning a basketball game or something as short-term as trying to 'hold it' when we have to go to the bathroom really bad but don't have anywhere to go. The 'mind' in 'mind over matter' implies that we have the power to overcome any obstacle or achieve our goals by using the power of the mind by focusing our thoughts on those goals. The question is, we hear this phrase often, but do we really believe it? Well, according to a recent study conducted by Harvard, the mind does indeed matter when it comes to achieving our goals, and more specifically, in losing weight.

The Harvard Weight Loss & Mind Study

The study conducted by Harvard, according to the book "59 Seconds", involved the study of over 80 hotel cleaning attendants from 7 different hotels. The nature of their work involves a lot of lifting, moving around, and other activities considered to be exercise. The question the researchers had was whether or not the attendants actually considered the fact that their work was good for them, so they set out to determine if telling the attendants that the work they were doing was good for them would impact their health by helping them lose weight and lower blood pressure.

To carry out the study, there were 2 groups of hotel attendants defined. One group was told that there work was indeed good for them and were given details of how many calories they burnt a day, were shown posters daily to reinforce what they were told, and were given handouts indicating how many calories were burnt with each job they carried out. The second group was the control group. They were told the benefits of exercise, but weren't told any specifics about how good their work was for them.

The study was carried out over a 4 week period, and the researchers ensured the attendants maintained the same level of activity throughout the experiment.

The weight loss results:

The hotel attendants who were informed that their work was good for them and were provided daily information and reminders lost quite a bit of weight, improved their blood pressure and lowered their body mass index, whereas the control group did not have any change in these areas.

What does this mean for you and weight loss?

It means that if you use the power of the mind, or 'mind over matter', and focus on your weight loss, exercise and diet goals, this one tactic in and of itself will help you stay on track and lose weight. So every day before you even get out of bed, think about your activities, the benefits of weight loss for you and your body, and think about how easy it will be to stick to your diet and exercise routine. When you are eating tell yourself how good this food is for your body and how it will help you lose weight. Do this throughout the day, as well, and the power of 'mind over matter' will work for you, and you can readily watch the pounds and inches slide off!