Country superstar Wynonna Judd is in People magazine this week talking about her impressive 55 pound weight loss (which she also showed off on Oprah in September). She attributes her weight loss success to a treatment she calls "brain state conditioning." So, intrigued, I set out to learn more about this diet trick. I called Dianne Price, the very friendly director of marketing for Brain State Technologies, the creators of Brainwave Optimization (which is the official name for the treatments Wynonna talked about), and this is a very condensed version of what she told me:
Brainwave Optimization involves an evaluation during which you discuss your issues, and then have sensors placed on various areas of your skull to "map" your brain activity and identify imbalances. Then the sensors are placed strategically over the imbalanced areas of your brain and your brain waves are transformed into sounds which are played back to you (according to Price the brainwaves sound like "the most beautiful music I've ever heard"). Each treatment lasts 90 minutes and you're supposed to complete 10 of them in a week. Although I know it sounds way too good to be true, Price says that this simple series of treatments helps people with all sorts of issues, including addictions, depression, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, ADHD, and learning disorders. Although Brainwave Optimization isn't designed as a weight-loss technique, Price says that many people who use it find that they lose weight afterward because they're less stressed and more balanced in their lives, and make healthier choices as a result.
To see video testimonials about the treatments, visit the Brain State Technologies website, where you can also find a treatment provider near you (there are 90 in the US, and 130 worldwide). And if you really want to learn more, you can read the book Limitless You: The Infinite Possibilities of a Balanced Brain, by Lee Gerdes, the inventor of Brainwave Optimization. I'd love to try the treatments—why wouldn't I optimize my brainwaves if it means more mental clarity, a happier outlook, and maybe even a smaller jeans size?—but since the series of ten sessions costs roughly $2,000, it's not in the budget at the moment. But it will be interesting to see if we hear more about this treatment in the future (it sounds similar to the high blood pressure treatment I wrote about a week or two ago—both are based on a sort of musical biofeedback).
Have you heard of this before? Have you even tried it yourself? Does it sound intriguing to you, or like a bunch of new age nonsense?
CORRECTION: In an earlier version of this post, I wrote that Price said that Brainwave Optimization can "cure" people of a variety of ailments, which was inaccurate. During our interview she was careful to say that the company doesn't claim to cure any diseases or symptoms.