Paul McKenna - I Can Make You Thin - Book/CD Review

Paul McKenna - I Can Make You Thin - Reviews

We review the book/cd that (at the time of press) is getting 4.5/5 stars on Amazon (and it's 100% suitable for vegetarians!)

We have to admit being fairly sceptical about a weightloss book and CD that claim to make you 'thin'. Isn't that a big of a grand claim? Can Paul McKenna really keep his promise? We gave the book and CD to one of our reviewers to see if it lives up to the hype.

I had to admit I groaned when I was given Paul McKenna's 'I Can Make You Thin' book and CD to review. I've tried hypnosis before - 'Give Up Smoking in 1 Hour' - and it didn't work (in the end I used good old willpower and nicotine gum!). Could hypnosis work for weightloss? I figured I had nothing to lose (apart from weight) so I gave it a go.

It's suggested that you read the book first, so that's what I did (I'll review the CD afterwards). On Amazon some of the reviewers say that the book is 'thin' so I was expecting some kind of scrawny leaflet. I was disappointed - this is a definitely a 'book-sized' book but it's well spaced and written in an easy conversation style. I'm a pretty speedy reader and I read it cover to cover in 2 hours. But what does it say? How does this solution to obesity and over-eating differ from all the (many, many) others?

These are the chapters:

Chapter One: Are You Ready for Something Truly Different

Chapter Two: The Simples Weight-Loss System in the World(TM)

Chapter Three: Programme Your Mind to Slim Your Body

Chapter Four: Overcoming Emotional Eating

Chapter Five: The Truth About Exercise

Chapter Six: Craving Busters

Chapter Seven: Frequently Asked Questions About the Simplest Weight-Loss System in the World(TM)

Let's go through the chapters one by one...

Chapter One: Are You Ready for Something Truly Different?

This chapter invites you too look at the secrets of naturally thin people and explores the three main patterns that stop people from losing weight: obsessive dieting, emotional eating and faulty programming.

Paul says that "You have simply developed some unproductive habits. The good news is that once you learn to re-programme your mind, it will be just as simple to new develop habits of thinking and acting that will guarantee your success. You don't even have to believe that it will work. Just follow my instructions and you will not only lose weight but stop obsessing about food forever."

He then asks you to imagine that you're at the end of your life, and how you will feel in your body if you haven't lost weight. He then asks you to imagine how you would feel if you have reached your ideal weight. There are a lot of visualisation exercises in this book. It really is tempting to skip these (and I have to admit that I did skip a few) but if you've got the time, I think it's a good idea because it puts you in the right frame of mind for the CD that you'll play when you've finished the book. The chapter ends with a testimonial from a woman who lost 4 1/2 stone by following Paul McKenna's method.

Chapter Two: The Simples Weight-Loss System in the World(TM)

Throughout the book there are 4 main principles to Paul McKenna's Weightloss System. This chapter introduces you to them. The first is: When you are hungry, EAT. Sounds simple enough, right? Paul explains how starving the body makes you fat and that the secret of thin people's success in maintaining their weight is that they only eat when they're genuinely hungry. Are you shaking your head yet, thinking 'but that's just obvious?' Me too! But don't stop reading yet.

The second principle is: EAT WHAT YOU WANT, Not What You Think You Should. That threw me! What about all the healthy food we're supposed to eat and all the 'bad fats' and 'refined sugars' that we all know are so bad for us? Paul says that as soon as you deprive yourself of something you upset the natural balance of your relationship to them. Making any food 'forbidden' makes them more attractive to you.

Principle number three: Eat CONSCIOUSLY and enjoy every mouthful. This is about savouring your food and not wolfing it down. You know how you can open a bar of chocolate and the next thing you know it's gone? You can barely even remember eating? That's what Paul wants us to stop. Eat slowly, eat without distraction (TV, newspaper, magazine etc). Really TASTE your food. This helps your body to break down the food (saliva) and increases your feeling of satiety (you feel fuller and more satisfied). Honestly, this tip is the one that had the biggest impact on me (particularly after listening to the CD. See 'This Viewers Verdict' at the end of this page).

Principle four: When You Think You Are Full, STOP Eating. Another 'obvious' tip, right? Not really. We're so programmed to clear our plates and only respond to the bloated 'full' feeling that we actually carry on eating way after we're actually full. Paul explains how to measure your hunger on the hunger scale, to avoid waiting until you're ravenous to eat and how to feel whether you're full or not and how to resign from the 'clean plate club'. This is the second principle that really hit home with me. Why not clear my plate? Clearing my plate would help me stop feeling hungry later, right? No. Paul says - leave something on your plate (even if it's just a couple of chips) so you get into the habit of not clearing your plate. If you're full, stop eating. If you're hungry later - eat later. It really does make sense.

The chapter ends with a testimonial from a woman who lost 18 stone by following Paul McKenna's system!

Chapter Three: Programme Your Mind to Slim Your Body

Paul McKenna starts this chapter by explaining how willpower enough won't help you lose weight - you need to use the power of your imagination. He explains how to focus on what you want, on self-image and self-fulfilling prophecy and gives you visualisation exercises to 'see yourself slim'. The chapter ends with the testimonia of a woman who lost 3 1/2 stone following Paul McKenna's system.

Chapter Four: Overcoming Emotional Eating

This chapter explains how to distinguish between actual hunger and emotional hunger. Paul goes into some detail about the causes of emotional hunger and there are three different visualisation exercises that will help you to overcome self-loathing and stop you being your own harshest critic.

Chapter Five: The Truth About Exercise

Paul explains the 'myth of metabolism', describes how exercise can increase your basal metabolic rate (just walking more every day helps, you don't have to be a gym bunny) and includes two exercises to help you increase your motivation to exercise. The chapter ends with the testimonial of a woman who lost 2 1/2 stone by following his system.

Chapter Six: Craving Busters

This chapter starts with the statement Any craving you may have felt is a learned behaviour. He says "That means you weren't born with it, you learned it and if you learned it you can unlearn it, often in a matter of minutes."

He then describes two techniques that you can use to 'bust' your cravings. The first technique involves thinking about the food you are craving and then tapping certain acupuncture points on your body (I didn't try this as I wasn't suffering a craving at the time of reading). The second technique involves thinking about a food you hate (or, he suggests, a plate of human hair if you love all food!), imagining eating it, and then squeezing your thumb and finger together (there's more to it than that but it would take me forever to write it all down). Before the exercise he actually says "Remember, only do the next technique if you genuinely want to stop eating a particular food for good." - apparently the technique is so powerful he stopped a chocolate addict from ever wanting chocolate again, in less than 2 minutes. Unfortunately I can't testify to how powerful this technique is - as I didn't try it. Let us know if you did and it worked for you!

Chapter Seven: Frequently Asked Questions About the Simplest Weight-Loss System in the World(TM)

This chapter is as it sounds - full of frequently asked questions.

The Hypnosis CD

If you're like me, this is the element of Paul McKenna's 'system' that you're most interested in! What happens? Is it scary? Will it work? Will I wake up?

As I said earlier, I'd used a hypnosis CD before to try and stop smoking. It took me ages to get round to doing it - partly because I was scared of what was happen and concerned that when I woke up (if I woke up!) I'd feel different and never really be 'myself' again. First things first - DON'T WORRY! You're 'conscious' all the way through a hypnosis CD. You can still hear all the noises around you (although you focus on the voice of the hypnotist) and, if an emergency or anything else required you to suddenly act or get up, you can. It's just like being very relaxed, like day dreaming before you fall asleep at night. There's no 'sleep' - you're awake all the way through and you'll definitely wake up at the end! You won't feel different or 'not you' - you'll just feel relaxed and (in the case of this CD) quite happy and alert.

Anyway, that's enough about hypnosis in general - what about this one?'s hard to describe because, when I played the CD I wanted to really try it (and not try to fight the hypnosis so I could do my review) so I can't recall everything. What I can remember is the way that one Paul McKenna voice comes out of one speaker (I played the CD in a little portable player by my bed) and another Paul McKenna voice comes out of the other. At some points during the session the voices overlap and you're not sure which to listen to - I don't think it matters - it just heightens the experience. Paul's voice is a bit whispery and, occasionally 'spooky' sounding but when you've stopped yourself from giggling and just relaxed you start to count down (as instructed by Paul) as he talks to you.

What follows I'm not entirely sure (I did the CD a couple of weeks ago and I've got a terrible memory) but it's Paul giving you positive affirmations about weightloss and what to do and not do (reaffirming what's in the book) and then he talks you back into the real world (5-4-3-2-1) etc and you wake up feeling genuinely alert and refreshed.

This Reviewer's Verdict

I really wasn't sure that the CD had worked...and had forgotten about it..until later that evening when I cooked my dinner. I sat down in front of the TV and started to eat when suddenly something in my brain went 'Woah! Slow down. Eat slowly'.. and I did. I took my time over every mouthful and really tasted what I was eating (as opposed to wolfing it down). I paid attention to my fullness levels and, for the first time in years, left some food on my plate! An hour or so later I thought I'd have some Green and Blacks chocolate. I snapped off about 8 pieces of a 100g bar and ate them, slowly, tasting the flavour. And it was enough. I didn't NEED any more (I really couldn't believe I didn't finish off the entire bar - as normal!). That was two weeks ago and I'm now 4 pounds lighter. I haven't counted calories, watched fat grams or avoided 'bad food' - I've just followed the four principles and it really has changed the way I think about food. I only listened to the CD once (and I think I should probably listen to it again to re-inforce the message) and know that some people chose to listen to it every day, and the pounds have just come off - without me doing anything. As I said at the beginning of this review I really WAS sceptical about this book/CD combination. I tried hypnosis before (for smoking) and it didn't work. This, it seems, has.

The Paul McKenna 'I Can Make You Thin' Book/CD gets 5 of 5 well deserved stars. *****

Sounds too good to be true? Want to read some other reviews?? Click the book cover below to read some reviews (written by people who've bought and tried the book/cd).

Paul McKenna - I Can Make You Thin - Reviews

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