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Five Unique Weight Loss Methods that You Have Never Heard Of

Updated on March 25, 2013
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With more than 108 million people on diets in the United States, it's no wonder that the weight-loss industry is big business. Annually, sales of diet books, supplements, and weight-loss surgeries top $20 Billion dollars. Given these facts it's almost ironic to think that we still have an obesity epidemic in this country.

And yet here we are - for many people in this day and age maintaining a healthy weight is a daily struggle. There are literally thousands of diets and fitness regiments out there. Many of them do provide results - the key to success with any diet is sticking with it. But if you are one of those people who have tried everything and still struggle with your weight, then perhaps its time to try something a little different. In this article, I will discuss five weight loss methods that most people have never heard of.

Ice Baths

It is a fact that when your body is cold it burns a larger amount of calories then if you were resting at room temperature. Being cold forces your body to generate heat to keep itself warm. The colder you are the faster those calories are burned to maintain body heat. Taking regular ice baths (3 times a week for 10 minutes each with water filled to your waste) is a safe and effective way to increase your caloric burn. Even though 10 minutes is a very short period of time, it may take an average person's body several hours to warm back up afterwards. This is when most of the calories are burned - not during the actual bath.

But don't fill the tub with ices cubes just yet. Most people won't tolerate ice baths very well initially. You should begin taking increasingly colder showers and eventually work towards actually taking a bath in ice. Take caution when using this method by limiting yourself to no more than 10 minutes per bath. You don't want to harm your body, you just want it to burn more calories! For more information on taking ice baths for weight loss, check out this great article: Ice Baths and Weight Loss?

Green Coffee Bean Extract

Many people haven't heard of this supplement yet, but if the latest buzz around the weight loss world is to be believed Green Coffee Bean Extract will revolutionize the supplement industry. Green (or un-roasted) coffee beans can encourage a substantial decrease in body weight within a very short period of time when combined with diet and exercise. Sound too good to be true? Well, there is some science behind the claim.

A recent study presented at the Exposition of the American Chemical Society described how participants lost an average of 17 pounds in 22 weeks while taking different amounts of Green Coffee Bean Extract. The results of the study also showed that participants saw an average of a 10.5 percent decrease in overall body weight and a 16 percent decrease in body fat. Even with the good news from this study, more research is still needed to investigate the potential side effects of this supplement. And as with anything else like this, understand that no pill is more effective than maintaining a regular exercise regimen and a healthy diet.

Hypnosis

When used in conjunction with a diet and exercise plan, hypnosis may help you reach your true weight loss potential. Although more scientific investigation is still needed, many studies suggest that hypnosis can increase the rate at which you lose weight after only spending a few weeks with a trained hypnotherapist. Because hypnosis is a process by which a person enters a state of relaxation and heightened suggestibility, a trained hypnotherapist can implant positive weight loss suggestions into your mind. These suggestions can improve your conscience response to eating and exercising which may lead to increased weight loss.

When searching for a qualified hypnotherapist to support your weight loss goals, be wary of scams and any claims by people stating you can lose weight without changing anything in your life. In general, hypnosis should be considered beneficial for limited weight loss only when combined with another form of treatment. Keep in mind that hypnosis isn't for everyone; for some people it just won't work. However, here are two stories about people who successfully lost weight with hypnosis: This first one is from Good Morning America and the second one is from Shape Magazine.

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Meditation

Even the best weight loss plans can fail if you have a stress filled life. Stress, and stress induced eating, can cause significant increases in weight over long periods of time. Meditation is a great way to relax and reduce (or eliminate) the amount of stress in your life and thus reduce the amount of fat being stored in your body. Daily meditation sessions lasting 15 to 20 minutes might be just what your body needs to reach its healthy potential. During your meditation sessions you should imagine yourself as being as thin as you want to be. By creating a mental picture of yourself as a thin and healthy being, you are training your mind to focus on your goal. For more tips on how to meditate for weight loss check out this great guide from Livestrong.

Acupuncture

According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, the cause of obesity is rooted in an imbalance of several of the organs within the body, namely the liver and the spleen. The basic theory is that if an acupuncturist targets the imbalance in these organ systems through therapy, the balance can be restored and a person's weight will return to normal levels. If the thought of large needles placed precisely about the body scares you, you can rest easy knowing that there are electro-stimulation therapies available that can target the same acupuncture points on the body.

Does acupuncture therapy really work? There are plenty of studies that point towards yes. In 1998 a study conducted by the University of Adelaide in Australia showed that 95% of participants experienced reduced appetite when certain acupuncture points were electrically stimulated. Later, in a 2003 study published in The Journal of Medical Acupuncture, participants receiving acupuncture lost more than three times more weight than the control group. Acupuncture is a safe and effective way to supplement your weight loss efforts.

References and Additional Resources

ABC News. 100 Million Dieters, $20 Billion: The Weight-Loss Industry by the Numbers. May 8th, 2012. <http://abcnews.go.com/Health/100-million-dieters-20-billion-weight-loss-industry/story?id=16297197>

Caveman Klaus. How to take an ICE Bath – what are the benefits? October 5, 2011. <http://www.cavemanklaus.com/weight-loss/how-to-take-an-ice-bath-what-are-the-benefits/>

CBS Minnesota. The Cold, Hard Truth: Can Ice Baths Help You Lose Weight? March 1, 2011. <http://minnesota.cbslocal.com/2011/03/01/can-ice-baths-help-you-lose-weight/>

Dr. Oz Fans. Dr Oz: 4 Hours To The Perfect Body: Ice Therapy & Timothy Ferriss. January 24, 2011. <http://www.drozfans.com/dr-ozs-advice/dr-oz-4-hours-to-the-perfect-body-ice-therapy-timothy-ferriss/>

Elwar, Eliot. Digital Journal: Op-Ed: Green coffee bean extract fights obesity and diabetes. October 8th, 2012. <http://digitaljournal.com/article/334403>

Hitt, Bianca. Vanderbilt University: Psychology Department: Weight Loss Through Hypnosis? October 2012 <http://www.vanderbilt.edu/AnS/psychology/health_psychology/hypnosis.htm>

Joswick, Diane. The Acupuncture Weight Loss Solution. October 2012. <https://www.acufinder.com/Acupuncture+Information/Detail/The+Acupuncture+Weight+Loss+Solution>

Natural News. Can Acupuncture Help Weight Loss? July 3, 2006. <http://www.naturalnews.com/019552_weight_acupuncture_loss.html>

Schultz, Hank. Nutra Ingredients USA: Green Coffee Bean More than a Fad. October 15, 2012. <http://www.nutraingredients-usa.com/Industry/Green-coffee-bean-more-than-a-fad>

Smith, Nick. Project Meditation. Meditation for Weightloss. October 2012. <http://www.project-meditation.org/bom/meditation_for_weightloss.html>

Zeratsky, Katherine. Mayo Clinic: Is Weight-Loss Hypnosis Effective? October 2012. <http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/weight-loss-hypnosis/AN01617>

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