An industry leader in weight management, LighterLife UK Ltd has an established, highly successful approach to significant weight loss and lifetime weight management. Since 1996, LighterLife has helped hundreds of thousands of people all over the UK and Ireland lose weight and keep it off.
It all began in 1989 when two of the three founding directors met as research subjects on a three-month study into very-low-calorie diets (VLCD). With a personal understanding of the problems of obesity, they recognised that lasting weight-management success could only come by addressing the underlying reasons behind weight gain. Without this understanding, weight regain would always be highly likely.
International Manager Paul Merrifield explains: “Over the next few years, the directors researched and developed then launched LighterLife Total, specifically for people who had 19kg (BMI 30+) or more to lose. Then, in 2007, we introduced LighterLife for Men, which is the only national weight-management and coaching programme developed specifically for men.”
This was followed in 2008 by the launch of LighterLife Lite – a weight-loss programme for people with ten to six kg to lose (BMI 25-29.9).
This year, the company’s key focus is on its preparation for international expansion. “We are currently exploring a number of global opportunities for our unique programmes and there are several countries that we believe have the consumer market and business potential to benefit from our concept,” says Merrifield. “This expansion could come by way of strategic alliances that are joint venture, licensing and/or franchising and we would be more than happy to discuss the market development of LighterLife with RLI readers in any country.”
Obesity is recognised as a global issue and is fast becoming the developed world’s biggest health problem. Over 30,000 deaths a year in England are caused by obesity alone and related deaths are second only to smoking. In fact, in the US, research indicates that obesity has now overtaken smoking as a bigger threat to people’s health. American scientists have confirmed that expanding waistlines now cause as much or more disease as tobacco, and do as much or more to shorten healthy life spans.
Being obese or overweight increases the risk of a range of diseases that can have a significant health impact on individuals.
A first-of-its-kind study in the UK was carried out at a dedicated obesity centre at Robert Gordon University, in Aberdeen. Adult men and women with a BMI greater than or equal to 35, referred to the obesity centre, were entered into a randomized controlled clinical trial of differing dietary interventions, including LighterLife Total. The findings of the study reveal that over 80 per cent of the clinically obese people failed to lose weight on the low-fat reduced-energy diet, as recommended by the UK National Health Service. Those that did lose weight lost an average of 18kg.
Whilst the average weight loss on the VLCD LighterLife Total was 31kg, compared to just 4kg on a low carbohydrate high protein Atkins-style diet.
The study was led by Professor Iain Broom, Director of the Centre for Obesity Research and Epidemiology at Robert Gordon University, Professor of Metabolic Medicine at the University of Aberdeen and Professor of Clinical Biochemistry at Robert Gordon University. He is also the Medical Director for LighterLife and sits on the company’s Medical Advisory Board.
“LighterLife is far more than a ‘diet’,” continues Merrifield, “it’s an opportunity for people to make real changes to their lives. Unlike many other weight-loss programmes, we don’t just concentrate on what’s going into people’s mouths. In our weekly meetings, we help people to understand what’s been going on in their heads – which is the key to keeping off the lost weight for good.”
For the full article, please see the October 2010 issue.