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Natural Awakenings Westchester / Putnam / Dutchess New York

Mind-Body Eating and Why Losing Weight and Keeping it Off May Require a Psychological Approach.

Apr 30, 2021 12:43PM ● By Marilee Burrell
Sharon Cahr, Mind Body Eating Coach based in Mount Kisco, NY

Sharon Cahr, Mind Body Eating Coach

If dieting has become an industry in the United States, that’s because trying to lose weight has turned into a national pastime. According to a study published by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, nearly half of American adults surveyed between 2013 and 2016 say they’d attempted to shed pounds over the previous 12 months. For women the statistic was even higher at more than 56 percent, compared to just under 42 percent of men.
   
The problem is that even when people do manage to lose weight, most of them can’t keep it off, says Sharon Cahr, a Mind Body Eating Coach based in Mount Kisco. She received her coaching certification from the Institute for the Psychology of Eating, where she learned how to work with people to address the deeper issues that can be counterproductive to their weight-loss goals.
   
We talked with Cahr recently about how the mind-body approach she uses with clients differs from the techniques used in traditional weight-loss programs.

How did you get started in this kind of coaching, and why?  

So many people struggle with food issues. There is a ton of information and food plans out there, but the fact is, 99 percent of individuals that lose weight on various programs gain it back. A psychological approach takes into account each person’s uniqueness and story.  

What does your work with clients look like?

We work together in a way in which eating and health issues become a place of exploration.  

What are some of the topics you explore together?

We explore how our challenges with eating, weight and health are directly connected to other primary life dimensions, in a caring, nurturing environment. We see how stress physiology, the relaxation response, breathing, meal timing, eating speed, sleep patterns, activity level, pleasure and nourishment profoundly influence digestion and calorie burning.

What do you see most people struggling with, and how do you help?

I see so many people punishing themselves and feeling guilty about food choices and weight struggles. There is so much self-hate that we inflict upon ourselves. We work to eliminate that.

What makes the coaching that you provide unique?

I work with the person’s individual journey and comfort level, validating their experiences while looking at a new set of skills regarding how to understand their nutritional needs from a different place. We focus on the connections between brain, body and behavior. This goes way beyond what we eat.

In addition to her coaching certification from the Institute for the Psychology of Eating, Sharon Cahr holds certifications in plant-based nutrition from Cornell University and in Ayurveda from Swami Sadashi Tirtha Ashram in Bayville, Long Island. For appointments or more info, contact her at 914.309.3452 or [email protected]