Research: JOHNSON and KARKUT

Listed in Issue 20


JOHNSON and KARKUT write that studies of hypnotic, covert and overt aversive techniques have yielded equivocal results regarding effect upon weight loss and examined the use of combinations of techniques.



The authors studied the effects of 2 programmes of hypnosis, imagery, diet, tape, behaviour management and support which differed in the overt use of aversion electric shock, disgusting tastes and smells. Of 172 overweight adult women, 86 women were treated in a hypnosis only and 86 women in an overt aversion and hypnosis regimen.


Significant weight losses were achieved with both programmes. Compared with the women treated only with hypnosis, the women receiving overt aversion achieved somewhat more desired goals and lost more weight, but the differences between the groups were not significant.



Johnson DL and Karkut RT. Participation in multicomponent hypnosis treatment programs for women's weight loss with and without overt aversion. Psychol Rep 79(2): 65968. Oct 1996.

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