Yet it is proving surprisingly difficult for both drugmakers and food companies to develop businesses directly addressing the problem. In a global economic downturn, modestly effective weight-loss drugs and special diet foods are turning out to be a tough sell when a cheaper alternative is to eat less – or do nothing. The first new prescription diet drugs to hit the U.S. market in more than a decade, from Vivus and Arena Pharmaceuticals, have registered disappointing sales and food companies’ diet lines are struggling. Switzerland’s Nestle has all but given up on the diet business, agreeing to sell the bulk of its Jenny Craig weight-loss unit last week to U.S. private equity firm North Castle Partners.
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Is Dieting Worth the Trouble?
The size of the symbol (from smallest to largest) indicates the starting sample size: under 100, under 200, over 200, over 1,000, and over 10,000. Solid circles indicate that less than 20 percent of starting sample dropped out of the study. Open circles mean 20 percent or more of the starting sample dropped out. But whenever we tried to convince other researchers that dieting was not the solution, our colleagues would say, “But what about the Look AHEAD trial?” Unlike the dieters in the studies we reviewed, dieters in the Look AHEAD trial (all of whom were garcinia cambogia side effects overweight or obese and had Type 2 diabetes) did in fact lose weight and keep it off. They managed to sustain a nearly 5 percent weight reduction for four years .
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