An obese woman claims she’s shed a third of her body weight after being hypnotised into thinking she’d undergone gastric band surgery.
Ruby Moseley, 25, of Welling, Kent, was bullied for being ‘ginger’ and overweight as a schoolgirl and ballooned to 17st while working long shifts in pubs, restaurants and cafes.
Working all hours to afford her rent, she missed regular meals and spiralled into a cycle of comfort eating until she met up with an old friend who was ‘unrecognisable’ after undergoing weight loss surgery.
Uncomfortable with the idea of going under the knife, Ruby booked herself in for alternative cognitive behaviour therapy-based Gastric Mind Band Treatment at the Elite Clinic in Fuengirola, Spain, with her grandmother Marion picking up the £2,500 bill.
Ruby Moseley, 25, of Welling, Kent, was bullied for being ‘ginger’ and overweight as a schoolgirl and ballooned to 17st while working long shifts in pubs, restaurants and cafes
Ruby says she’s shed a third of her body weight after being hypnotised into thinking she’d undergone gastric band surgery
After four daily intensive CBT sessions at the clinic, she completed the treatment package by being hypnotised into believing she actually underwent weight loss surgery.
Ruby’s relationship with food completely changed that day, and she is now 13st and a curvy size 12, with a target weight of 11st.
To help maintain her trim figure, she keeps a golf ball in her handbag to remind her of her virtual ‘surgery’ and to not to eat too much and re-listen to her hypnosis sessions if she feels the need.
Ruby told FEMAIL the first day of her hypnosis treatment was ‘very intense’ and lasted more than six hours.
‘They took me through an in-depth questionnaire covering my childhood, my background, my past relationship with food and just about every aspect of me, to see what my triggers were,’ she explained.
‘Each day I had deeper introductions to their pause button therapy. The therapy was to help me change my habits around food.
Ruby’s relationship with food has completely changed and she is now 13st and a curvy size 12 (right), with a target weight of 11st. Pictured left before
Having left school aged 19, weighing around 15st, Ruby worked in restaurants and bars until moving back to the UK from Spain almost two years ago. Pictured overweight as a schoolgirl
‘Essentially I was over-eating when I was stressed, tired and depressed. We looked at why I would quit a diet and how to change that.
‘Day four was the final and deep hypnosis session, where they talk patients through their own “virtual” gastric band “surgery”.
‘At the clinic they had all kinds of surgical models to explain aspects of the surgical gastric band procedure and I was shown a film of an actual operation. They connected me to a type of heart monitoring machine before I was hypnotised.
‘While I was under, I remember thinking I was wearing a medical gown. I felt myself being wheeled into an operating theatre, and could vividly hear the sounds of the medical instruments being picked up and put down.
‘I could also the sound of people moving around. The smell in the room changed: it was exactly like I was in hospital.
‘As the surgeons “started the procedure”, Marion, my therapist, placed a golf ball into my hand and I was told to squeeze it. As I did, I felt the band tighten around my stomach. It was really surreal.’
Since losing 4st, Ruby says her self-esteem has improved and she’s much happier in herself – and she has three large bags of clothes to get rid of because she now wears a size 12.
She added: ‘I keep a golf ball in my handbag to remind me not to eat too much and listen again to the hypnosis sessions whenever I feel like it.’
Working all hours to afford her rent, Ruby missed regular meals and spiralled into a cycle of comfort eating until she met up with an old friend who was ‘unrecognisable’ after undergoing weight loss surgery
Ruby also wears a rubber wrist band with remote-control type icons of pause, fast forward and rewind, a technique developed by the Elite Clinic.
She added: ‘It’s to make you think before you eat something, to picture a fork in the road and what will happen if you eat it.
‘It might be enjoyable eating the doughnut, but you fast-forward in your mind and you feel horrible. Fast-forward again and you’re not losing weight and you’re stuck in a cycle.
‘You hit rewind and you think what happens if you don’t eat the doughnut.
‘Fast-forward two hours and you feel good about yourself because you made the right choice, you fast-forward to where you see yourself losing weight. It’s like painting a mental image in your head.’
Having left school aged 19, weighing around 15st, Ruby worked in restaurants and bars until moving back to the UK from Spain almost two years ago.
In March this year Ruby’s boyfriend Ben Mason, 26, a social rehabilitation support worker for brain injury for the charity Headway, proposed – but the couple had to live apart during lockdown, and Ruby started putting on weight
But working in a coffee shop in the day and covering late-night shifts in a pub, Ruby found herself giving into the temptation of free muffins, pastries and calorie-laden frappuccinos by day, and takeaway fried chicken and pizzas by the time she finished work.
‘On the rare occasion I had a night off my boyfriend and I would order pizza, but over time the orders got bigger. We started sharing a large pizza, then got a medium one each and started adding sides. Sometimes we’d share a tub of ice-cream after as well,’ Ruby admitted.
By Christmas 2018, when she tipped the scales at 17st, she realised something had to be done.
‘I’d noticed from seeing pictures of myself that the weight was piling on but seeing just how much I really weighed on the scales made me realise I had to do something about it,’ she explained.
‘It was the heaviest I’d ever been, I was wearing size 20 clothes and I felt disgusted with myself.’
Ruby, pictured in February 2019, tried Slimming World but struggled to stick to a formal diet
Ruby signed up for Slimming World classes and joined a female only gym, determined to make 2018 the year she lost weight to make her feel happier.
She recalled: ‘I lost about a stone the first month and I felt better to be making progress.
‘My boyfriend Ben was really supportive; he liked me the way I was but knew how unhappy I was with my body.
‘I quit Slimming World after a couple of months because I wasn’t losing anymore weight after that. I felt stuck but not ready to give up trying to be slimmer. I still weighed myself regularly and did a combination of Slimming World and calorie counting.’
Ruby lost two stone that year, and in March this year boyfriend Ben Mason, 26, a social rehabilitation support worker for brain injury for the charity Headway, proposed.
But the happy couple were separated when the first lockdown came, with Ben staying at his family’s home.
Ruby said she feels a lot better in herself and Ben loves the confidence losing weight has given her
Ruby now has three large bags of clothes to get rid of because she wears a size 12
Alone and unable to go to work, Ruby put on 10lbs sitting on the sofa snacking and drinking, so decided to use her dual Spanish residency to stay with her family in La Cala de Mijas in Spain.
It was a life-changing trip; Ruby met up with an old school friend who had been a similar weight to her, but was now barely recognisable.
How does a Gastric Mind Band work?
The Psychology-based Gastric Mind Band® (GMB) weight loss treatment is focused around Cognitive Behaviour Therapy.
CBT is a talking therapy that can help you manage your problems by changing the way you think and behave.
It’s most commonly used to treat anxiety and depression, but can be useful for other mental and physical health problems.
CBT as a primary method of creating change for those wishing to lose weight has gradually become the ‘core’ therapy, the one around which all the others are woven and underpinned during GMB treatment.
The Gastric Mind Band is fitted during the fourth and final session. After an in-depth talk about gastric band surgery, and how it works, patients will see and hold a surgical gastric band, and watch a short video showing one being fitted.
During the visualisation session which follows, patients are then taken on a virtual journey from the hospital ward to the operating theatre, incorporating all the accompanying sights, smells and sounds, culminating in the gastric mind band ‘operation’.
The friend told her she’d had gastric sleeve surgery – where part of the stomach is removed to make it smaller – at a cost of £10,000.
‘I was completely shocked, she looked amazing and I was jealous,’ Ruby admitted. ‘My nan had been urging me since I was a teenager to try to eat healthily and do exercise to lose weight, and when I went home, I told her about it.
‘She told me she’d had two friends who had gastric “mind” bands for a fraction of the cost of the invasive surgery my friend had. I was skeptical but willing to try anything.’
The clinic encourages patients to focus on a carbohydrate-free Keto diet.
Ruby said: ‘The clinic changed my eating habits by changing my mindset and teaching me tools to help, like holding my knife and fork in the opposite hands to help me eat more slowly and not eating in front of the TV so I can pay proper attention to what I’m eating.’
Ruby’s breakfast is now either sausage or eggs and bacon, but her portion sizes are really small. An egg and two pieces of bacon are enough to fill Ruby up.
If she skips breakfast, she eats celery with cream cheese, salad or vegetables.
She said: ‘I feel a lot better in myself and Ben loves the confidence losing weight has given me. He loves me anyway, but he’s seen the change in me and how much happier I am.
‘I saw my nan in November and her face was a picture, she told me she was really proud of me.’
Elite Clinic owner Martin Shirran said: ‘The results achieved by Ruby are incredible; we are so very pleased for her, especially as we were forced to do all the follow-up sessions via Skype and Zoom.
‘Since the situation with Covid we have been working around the clock to perfect and improve our on-line treatment package.’
A full breakdown on the GMB treatment package, already completed by over 1,700 people from around the world, can be viewed at www.gmband.com.