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  Asthma, Migraines and Weight Gain – Simple, Powerful Ways Hypnosis Can Help

By Devin Hastings, author of "21st Century Medicine: Clinical Evidence For The Healing Power of The Mind"






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My head exploded when my 2½ year old son first discovered the joy of taking off his very full diaper and swinging it around in circles.  My life also flashed before my eyes as I saw a very gross future ahead of me. 


And I wondered to myself: “What was I thinking when I thought becoming a dad was such a smart idea?” 


And then it hit me: the stuff from my son’s diaper that is and then the answer hit me all too clearly:  “I wasn’t thinking when I thought becoming a dad was a good idea.”


Here’s why: I’m quite certain that my brain had been kidnapped by Giant, Alien Tap-Dancing Frogs who then replaced my brain with a Barbie Lunchbox.


But as hard as I sometimes think it is being a dad, there is no way I could ever be a pregnant woman – I’m too much of a coward.


And this brings me to a crucial point for all dads-to-be: If you want to help prevent asthma in your child, you must do everything you can to help your pregnant wife remain anxiety and depression free.


Think that’s a tall order tough-guy?  Fine.  Give birth then.  Oh, first carry the kid in your stomach for 9 months with your organs pushed all out of place then discover the joys of back labor. 


Here’s the serious point: In the July, 2011 edition of ‘Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology’ there is an article (1) which discusses a study that makes a solid connection between anxiety and depression in an expectant mom and asthma in the child.


In a news release from the study’s lead researcher, Marilyn Reyes states:


“Approximately 70 percent of mothers who said they experienced high levels of anxiety or depression while they were pregnant reported their child had wheezed before age 5.”


The point to this?  Hypnotists can help these kids avoid becoming asthmatic!  Hypnotists are stress reduction specialists and helping an expectant mom to reduce her stress even by a small amount can be the critical edge that makes the difference between a child wheezing or not.


Plus, think about the benefits to the mother and unborn child if the pregnant mom can reduce or avoid medications. 


Speaking of pregnant moms and medications, you should know this: On March 4, 2011 the FDA issued a press release about Topamax, a migraine/epilepsy medication.  The following is quoted directly from the FDA press release (2):


“FDA notified healthcare professionals and patients of an increased risk of development of cleft lip and/or cleft palate (oral clefts) in infants born to women treated with Topamax (topiramate) during pregnancy. Because of new human data that show an increased risk for oral clefts, topiramate is being placed in Pregnancy Category D. Pregnancy Category D means there is positive evidence of human fetal risk based on human data but the potential benefits from use of the drug in pregnant women may be acceptable in certain situations despite its risks.”


Well, you’ve probably figured out where I’m going with this: Topamax (and perhaps other potentially harmful medications to the mother and fetus) can possibly be avoided because of the benefits of hypnosis.


Just recently there was an article (3) in the June 2011 issue of ‘Headache’ that discussed a study which concluded that behavioral approaches including hypnosis cost less and are actually more effective then the use of drugs for migraines.


Dr. Donald Penzien, University of Mississippi Medical Center professor of psychiatry, coauthored the study comparing drugs to behavioral therapy. He noted that the costs of the drugs which chronic migraine sufferers take every day to prevent onset don’t seem that expensive as compared paying for a hypnosis or other behavioral modification program.  Keep in mind that many of migraine drugs can cost several dollars a day.


“But those costs keep adding up with additional doctor visits and more prescriptions,” Penzien said. “The cost of behavioral treatment is front-loaded. You go to a number of treatment sessions but then that’s it. And the benefits last for years.” (4)


You know, it just seems to me that every day there are more and more reasons for insurance companies (and of course consumers) to get on board with the idea that hypnosis is a powerful tool for better health.  No, it won’t make a person perfect but it can and frequently does make them better to some degree and sometimes the results are simply remarkable.


Phew.  Writing this article has made me hungry.  Think I’ll grab some potato chips.  Uh, maybe not.  Seems that potato chips are a major cause of weight gain.  Yep.  Last night, I opened a kitchen cabinet and there was a bag of chips pointing a gun right at my head.  And then the chips said: “You are bored.  You must eat something right now even though you aren’t really hungry.”  Hey, what could I do? 


I can hear you sighing and crying: “Not my beloved companion, potato chips?!  You evil hypnotist, go away!”

Sadly, it is true you know, eating potato chips will sneak on the pounds one, delicious, crispy crunch at a time. 


The problem with potato chips is that as well as being tasty, they are sneaky (and carry guns).  A very large study (5) showed a strong connection between our yummy, gun-toting friends and gradual weight gain.  Weight gain that is so slow as to be almost invisible.


Should you eliminate chips?  Yeah, right.  Can you reduce your intake?  Definitely.  Hypnosis can absolutely help a person accomplish that goal.  Start today and you will see positive changes.


Warm regards,


Devin “Potato chips really scare me” Hastings




(1) “Relationship between maternal demoralization, wheeze, and immunoglobulin E among inner-city children”.  Annals Of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology

Volume 107, Issue 1, Pages 42-49.e1 (July 2011)


(2) FDA Press Release Title: “Topamax (topiramate): Label Change - Risk For Development of Cleft Lip and/or Cleft Palate in Newborns” - Posted 03/04/2011


(3) “Direct Costs of Preventive Headache Treatments: Comparison of Behavioral and Pharmacologic Approaches” - Headache: The Journal of Head and Face Pain

Volume 51, Issue 6, June 2011, Pages: 985–991,


(4) Ibid 3


(5) Study featured in the article: “Changes in Diet and Lifestyle and Long-Term Weight Gain in Women and Men” - New England Journal of Medicine June 23, 2011; 364:2392-2404



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