I can understand how hypnosis works effectively with habits and behaviors, like smoking or overeating; but I am unsure of the claims for physical ailments.
As a former food scientist, I too was initially incredulous of some claims made for hypnotherapy. It turns out there is a logical explanation; but it is not western logic.
Traditional medicine is based on a mechanical understanding of the human body, with the presumption that anything can be fixed once we know how all the parts work together. That is a western perspective. The eastern perspective—the source of the most prominent medical alternatives, practiced for a thousand years before western scientists discovered cells much less quantum physics—takes the view that all life is energy. “Thoughts” are a form of energy, and this energy can be used for healing. But thoughts may also have caused the initial problem.
A client came to me for relief from thirty-two large, unsightly warts on her hands. They had been removed medically several times but always returned. During the intake interview the client described multiple concerns and issues in her life, eventually characterizing herself as a “worry wart.” The rest of my work with her focused on changing how she perceived various circumstances. She adopted a more positive frame of mind, including the language she addressed to herself and others. Continuing to engage self-hypnosis over the next ninety days, the warts dissolved down to three tiny nubs.
A western physician would call it spontaneous remission, lacking any other logical explanation. A big smile on the client’s face at the end of the first session convinced me she had experienced an energy transformation. Using eastern logic, revising her thoughts led to the healing she desired.