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In 2008, 34 percent of American adults were considered overweight and another 34 percent were considered obese, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The prevalence of childhood obesity was close to 20 percent in 2008.

Being overweight or obese raises the risk of many health conditions, including depression, heart disease and hypertension. Working to drop excess pounds improves health status, increases energy and reduces the risk of dangerous health complications. Many weight loss programs are available that claim to aid in quick weight loss, but may not be healthy choices. Hypnosis is a medical treatment used for many issues, weight loss being one of them. The theory behind the procedure is that reaching a calm and focused state of mind through the use of verbal cues and imagery helps change behavioral patterns that contribute to weight gain and poor eating choices, according to Katherine Zeratsky, R.D., L.D., nutritionist at the Mayo Clinic.

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