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Home » Why We Must Stop Ignoring the Psychology of Weight Loss: Alisa Anokhina at TEDxUCL (Transcript)

Why We Must Stop Ignoring the Psychology of Weight Loss: Alisa Anokhina at TEDxUCL (Transcript)

Alisa Anokhina

Alisa – Research psychologist

So we’ve just had a talk about nursing the soul. So I think it is fitting that I now talk about nursing the body. So in particular, I want to talk to you about a sentence which you might have said to yourself at some point or you’ve heard someone else say. And the sentence is this: “Losing weight is easy; just eat less and exercise more”. And you see this in the media a lot.

So, it’ll come up as sort of a sarcastic headline from the university of all this every once in a while. And it seems like a rational premise. So if calories in is less than calories out, you lose weight, right? No. It’s how it would work if we were talking about Celebrex. And it is totally legitimate thing from a physiological standpoint.

But if we are talking about people, it is more complicated than that. So what can psychology research tell us about weight loss? Well, first let‘s look about some of the assumptions we have about how easy it’s going to be for us. So a few years ago, there was a survey where they asked people who were trying to lose weight what sort of weight loss they were aiming for. And the average for that was around 25 kilos, or 55 pounds. So the actual average weight loss that people reports after 12 months of just eating less, is around 6 kilos.

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