Readers should view my introductory article on weight loss before continuing with this page.
I think it's reasonable to suggest that telling people to eat less and exercise more is not going to be enough to convince them to part with their money. In order to do that, you need to come up with a weight loss method that possesses three essential criteria; 1) it has to be new, 2) it has to promise rapid results and most of all, 3) it has to be as effortless as possible.
If you're going to sell a way in which people can lose weight, you will need to understand that the typical customer will more than likely be someone who has tried many other weight loss schemes before they arrived at yours, and will more than likely go and try the next new thing after that as well. This can be quite a conundrum, as other than perhaps a better understanding of how the glycemic index can influence appetite regulation, scientists haven't really leant much about weight loss in the past few decades they didn't already know. You can't let this get in your way if you are to make it in the weight loss industry however - you need to provide the market with something they haven't already tried, which inevitably means bending the truth a bit or capitalizing upon latest fads, depending upon what seems to be popular at the time (low carb, ketogenic diets are perhaps the biggest selling point at the moment, so including these principles somewhere means an almost guaranteed following).
People are impatient creatures. Despite it taking months if not years to pile on the pounds, most people will inevitably want to lose it as soon as humanly possible. After speaking to many hundreds of weight loss patients over the last few years, it has become overwhelmingly apparent that most people consider anything less than a kilo a week to be not worthwhile, and usually give up if a few weeks go by without any results. Nutrition Australia recommends that around 1 kg a month is a healthy rate to be losing weight, but to many people, this is simply not fast enough to be worth spending money on.
I have found that the less thought process that needs to go into a person's weight loss effort; the more likely they will give it a go. The most basic examples include weight loss pills, by far the most effortless way most people would consider losing weight. After all, why diet and exercise when you can simply take a pill? Whilst some weight loss pills actually work to some extent (usually requiring a prescription) they are usually unnecessary, are not without side effects and do nothing to teach the patient long term healthy food choosing habits. Most weight loss pills unfortunately (such as those sold as listed therapeutic goods) simply do little if anything at all. (Read More....)
This is not very comforting given that most of them can be found on the shelves in most pharmacies, with many customers assuming that someone as reliable as a pharmacist simply wouldn't sell a medication unless it really worked. (Read More.... )
Many fad diet schemes dictate what to eat, how much of it to eat and when to eat it (taking the effort out of food choosing) though some popular diet schemes go a step further and actually provide the meals for you, even taking the effort of shopping out of the equation. Some do claim to teach clients healthy food choosing skills, though usually sell them unnecessary products in the process (such as pre packaged meals, meal replacements, supplements or gimmicky methods of counting Calories).
People will almost always chose the no brainier option if given the opportunity however, usually because healthy food selection, Calorie counting and basic food choosing skills appear to be complex and time consuming. In reality however, it would take no more than about 5 seconds to pick up a food item, turn it over and look at how many Calories it contains (perhaps up to 20 seconds if you looked it up in a $10 calorie counting book). As for being complex – I'm fairly sure than even a year 3 primary school student would possess the necessary mathematical skills to add several numbers together.
Whilst most popular weight loss schemes ‘work' as such (by providing short term weight loss), they do so simply because they result in lower energy consumption. The reason that they fail (long term) however if because they usually aim to provide the market with that which they want (something new, quick and easy) rather than something that they need (learning how to make healthier food choices). Once the person looses the motivation to follow the prescription (and they will) it's like taking the floaties off a person who never learnt to swim.