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$75 Billion U.S. Weight Loss Market’s Focus Shifts To Medical Programs & Drugs

John LaRosa, Marketdata Research Director
John LaRosa, Marketdata Research Director

Obesity drugs are only half of the weight loss equation."

April 6 - Marketdata LLC, a leading market research firm tracking the weight loss market since 1989, has just released a new report: “The U.S. Weight Loss & Diet Control Market” 17th Edition. This 427-page report is a comprehensive analysis of ALL 10 segments of the weight loss market and its competitors -- commercial and medical programs, multi-level marketers, retail meal replacements and weight loss supplements, the health clubs industry, and low-cal foods and soft drinks.

“The recent high demand for prescription obesity drugs is shifting the tide in the market. Impatient and fickle dieters, I’m afraid, are jumping on a bandwagon that may be unproductive in the long term. The most effective weight loss programs have been those providing both behavior modification and coaching in conjunction with appetite suppressants. But, this is not what many dieters are now getting from their physicians, who traditionally have limited time and backgrounds in nutrition and psychological issues.”, according to Research Director, John LaRosa.

Major Findings:

* The value of the U.S. weight loss market is estimated to have declined by a historic 25% in 2020, to $58 billion. as a result of pandemic-related closures of weight loss centers and medical programs. However, the market recovered to $75.5 billion in 2022 - forecast to gain 6.4% this year, to $80.4 billion.

* Revenues of the major commercial weight loss chains such as WW, NutriSystem, Jenny Craig, Medifast and others were up 3.6% last year to $4.6 billion. Sales fell 14% at Weight Watchers and Medifast sales slowed to a 4.8% gain. This slowdown is no doubt due, in part, to people choosing Rx diet drugs instead of a structured program.

* The market may be entering a new era focused on medical approaches, as a new generation of prescription obesity drugs from Novo Nordisk, Eli Lilly and others hit the market. Many physicians are adding these semaglutide brands such as Wegovy, Ozempic, Saxenda and Mounjaro to their programs, and even Weight Watchers is now providing a medical plan.

* Medical weight loss programs, including surgeries, were valued at $8.8 billion, with major growth coming from the Rx obesity drugs market, which nearly doubled last year to $1.56 billion due to the high demand for new semaglutide drugs. These meds are expensive, about $1,100 per month, but some consumers are willing to pay.

* Medical weight loss programs offered by bariatricians (MDs who are board-certified to treat obesity), and long-established brands such as Health Management Resources, Robard, Optifast, Lindora Clinics and other medical franchises offer a complete program encompassing not only medications but support, coaching, meal plans, etc., along with long-term maintenance programs. These are the firms that address the WHOLE weight loss equation.

* Multi-level marketing companies constitute a major force in the weight loss market, with the top 8 firms accounting for $3.4 billion in 2020 sales. Included in this group are Medifast, Herbalife, Shaklee, BeachBody, AMWAY, USANA, Isagenix and more.

* Meal replacements and retail weight loss supplements (diet pills) comprise a $4.9 billion market, popular among DIY dieters. However, the MLM channel was hurt due to supply chain disruptions and the inability of coaches/distributors to meet clients in person.

"As always, American dieters are looking for the quick fix, the magic pill, and they think they’ve found it in these new obesity drugs. They don’t want to change their eating and exercise habits, or meet with a coach for 12 weeks. That’s hard work. Consequently, this current focus on drugs may be counterproductive and represent false hope. What happens when one stops taking the drugs, or can’t afford them any longer?”, according to Research Director, John LaRosa.

About The Report

“The U.S. Weight Loss & Diet Control Market”, March 2023, is a 427-page independent analysis of all segments of the weight loss market. It contains 34 in-depth competitor profiles and 160 tables and charts. Coverage of: commercial chains, meal replacements and appetite suppressants market, diet soft drinks & artificial sweeteners, low-calorie frozen dinner entrees, the health clubs industry, prescription obesity drugs, medical weight loss programs by: hospitals, clinics and MD offices, bariatrician programs, weight loss surgery. Extensive coverage of the effects of the pandemic and effect on operations and revenues from 2020-2022. 2023 & 2027 Outlook and Forecasts. The report’s price is $1,995. A 41-page Overview summary is $99. The Table of Contents can be found at: Contact: Marketdata LLC, 7210 Wareham Drive, Tampa, FL 33647, ( 813-971-8080. John LaRosa is available for interviews.

About Marketdata

Marketdata LLC is a 44-year old, independent market research firm with a specialty tracking the weight loss market since 1989. It publishes a wide variety of reports about service and healthcare sectors, and does consulting, custom research projects, and teleconference calls. Marketdata also operates a free website,, updated daily with the latest weight loss market and competitor news, analyses and a blog by John LaRosa.

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