Little scientific support for weight loss programs

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Randomized controlled trial, Dieting, Obesity

There is little evidence to support the use of many commercial
weight loss programs, according to a study in the US, which
suggests that the search for new, more effective methods will
continue to preoccupy dieters.

The study, published in the 1 January issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine​, examined the evidence for the major commercial and organized self-help weight loss programs in the United States that provide in-person or online counseling.

It only included programs supported by randomized trials of at least 12 weeks long that included a follow-up evaluation lasting at least one year. These were eDiets.com, Health Management Resources, Take Off Pounds Sensibly, OPTIFAST, and Weight Watchers.

"Of three randomized, controlled trials of Weight Watchers, the largest reported a loss of 3.2 per cent of initial weight at two years,"​ write authors Adam Gilden Tsai and Thomas A. Wadden from the University of Pennsylvania.

Research on very-low-calorie diet programs showed patients who completed treatment lost approximately 15-25 per cent of initial weight but these were associated with high costs, high attrition rates, and a high probability of regaining 50 per cent or more of lost weight in one to two years.

Commercial interventions available over the Internet and organized self-help programs produced minimal weight loss, added the authors.

"Because many studies did not control for high attrition rates, the reported results are probably a best-case scenario."

"With the exception of one trial of Weight Watchers, the evidence to support the use of the major commercial and self-help weight loss programs is suboptimal. Controlled trials are needed to assess the efficacy and cost-effectiveness of these interventions,"​ they concluded.

More than 1 billion adults are overweight in the world, with at least 300 million of them clinically obese.

Related topics: Weight management

Related products

Natural ingredients to support weight loss

Natural ingredients to support weight loss

Gencor Pacific Limited | 11-Oct-2022 | Clinical Study

Weight management consists of an active lifestyle and a healthy diet. These two methods are important when trying to achieve significant and long-lasting...

MEDITERRANEAN INGREDIENTS FOR HEALTH AND WELLNESS

MEDITERRANEAN INGREDIENTS FOR HEALTH AND WELLNESS

BIONAP BIOACTIVE NATURAL PRODUCTS | 29-Apr-2022 | Product Catalog

BIONAP is positioned to lead the next generation of natural and organic ingredients with the aim to improve health and quality of life over the world.

MOROSIL™: NATURAL APPROACH TO WEIGHT CONTROL

MOROSIL™: NATURAL APPROACH TO WEIGHT CONTROL

BIONAP BIOACTIVE NATURAL PRODUCTS | 25-Feb-2022 | Technical / White Paper

MOROSIL™ is a standardized extract obtained from the juice of a unique cultivar of Moro red oranges (Citrus sinensis (L.) Osbeck). Thanks to the synergistic...

Related suppliers

Follow us

Products

View more

Webinars