Weight Watchers And Slimming World: The Ugly Truth Behind Diet Brands

Weight Watchers And Slimming World: The Ugly Truth Behind Diet Brands

Would you like to spend over £1,000 ($1,632) a year on Weight Loss brands and have nothing to show for it?

Or,

spend the same kind of money for the next eight years without ever reaching your goal weight?

For many people, years of dieting with the use of mainstream weight loss brands is the norm. While they might work for the minority, there is however, a large number of people who aren’t getting the results they deserve.

The lack of progress has led people to feel disheartened and confused as to why two of the biggest weight loss brands in the world cant assist them in getting long-term results.

But today, that confusion ends here as I share with you a life example of how clients Jane and Sarah overcome The Ugly Truth Behind Weight Watchers And Slimming World, and how they were able to achieve their dream size while saving a fortune.

Meet Jane and Sarah: Brand Loyal Customers Of Weight Watchers And Slimming World 


Jane is a 45-year-old woman who lives with her daughter Sarah, age 21. For as long as Jane can remember, she’s fluctuated between sizes 22-24, but for eight years she has attended multiple Weight Watchers classes across her hometown, trying to get down to her dream size of a 14.

Her daughter, Sarah, also struggles with her weight and is a size 18. Sarah attends her local Slimming World class and has done so for the past 24 months, hoping to reach her ideal size of 12.

Over the years, Jane and Sarah have received some satisfactory results but have never fully reached their goal weight.

Both Jane and Sarah were convinced that Weight Watchers and Slimming World classes are the best weight loss resources in Britain. But despite never meeting their target weight, they’ve had no objections to continuing the classes.

Jane and Sarah agreed the reason they had never reached their ideal weight was down to skipping classes, not exercising enough, and being prone to stress and depression.

They also believe that a slight genetic misfortune might be hindering their results because obesity runs in the family.

Because Jane and Sarah are brand loyal customers, they are familiar with their local weight loss classes, diets, and procedures.

They have friends who join them every week; their weight loss consultants are friendly. To say the least, Jane and Sarah felt safe and comfortable with their local classes and had no reason ever to leave.

When Jane and Sarah stick to their diets, they look forward to their weekly class. But when they have a bad week, they miss classes to skip the embarrassment of looking like a failure.

Jane has never reached her ideal size of 14 and has fluctuated between sizes 18-24 for the past eight years using Weight Watchers.

Sarah, who has been using Sliming World for the previous two years, has never reached her ideal weight of a size 12.

However, one summer, Sarah did arrive at a comfortable size of 16, but it lasted only six weeks before going back to her previous size. Of which Sarah described as, ”demoralizing”.

Ironically, Jane seemed to be only ever Watching her Weight while Sarah’s World was Slim on results.

Jane and Sarah, along with thousands of people across the UK (and other countries) will spend on average £1,200+ ($1,700) a year on Weight Watchers and Slimming World products. Purchases will include branded foods, classes, books, diets, magazines, and  subscriptions, etc.

Deconstructing Jane And Sarah’s Lifestyle With Weight Loss Brands 


Jane: Weight Watchers 

  • Has been a size 22 since the age of 37
  • Has been a loyal Weight Watchers customer for 8 years
  • Has never reached her target size of 14
  • Has spent over £10,000+ with weight Watchers

Sarah: Slimming World 

  • Has been a size 18 since the age of 19
  • Has been a loyal Slimming World Customer for 2 years
  • Has never reached her target size of 12
  • Has spent over £2,000 with Slimming World

Despite the amount of money Jane and Sarah spent, they continued to strive with the help of Weight Watchers and Slimming World.

The problem for Jane and Sarah, along with thousands of other weight loss members was that their minds hadn’t been programmed for weight loss.

Instead, their minds had only ever been programmed for Weight Watchers And Slimming World diets and procedures.

Jane and Sarah didn’t truly understand weight loss. Instead, they both shared a typical concept: Eat healthy foods, exercise often and repeat. That was it.

Jane and Sarah had nothing more than this typical concept shared by thousands of people across the UK and the world.

However, they were very up to date with the Weight Watchers and Slimming World diet information that was provided over the years.

They understood things like Weight Watcher Points, Slimming World Syns, red day and green day recipes.

 Points = Calories

 Red/Green Day = Specific Meal Planning 

Jane and Sarah used the Slimming World and Weight Watcher diets for many years without ever achieving their desired size.

They followed the diets correctly, achieved little success from time to time, but never reached their target weight.

Sarah explains,

‘‘Some weeks I would lose only half a pound (0.5 pounds); even though I did everything I was supposed to do. My consultant would tell me, ‘’you couldn’t have been following it correctly.’’ But I did everything I was told’’

Sarah was telling the truth, but unfortunately for both her and mother Jane, the truth wasn’t revealed to them.

The Ugly Truth Of Weight Watchers And Slimming World


A Service That Supports Your Wants not your Needs 

Weight Watchers and Slimming World are companies. And the goal of any company is to determine potential buyers of a product or service.

In most cases, a product isn’t developed until a company knows their target market inside out. Which means your lifestyle, attitude, beliefs, income, culture, gender and age have all been taken into consideration.

Once a company has defined who You are, and what your needs and wants are, a product and service is developed around those factors.

Weight Watchers and Slimming World are companies that can almost predict that the service they offer is something you are willing to pay for.

While there is nothing wrong with the way companies do their market research, the problem with Slimming World and Weight Watchers is, they are almost supporting your own negligence.

Of course, you don’t want to hear about calories and nutrients; you don’t want to deal with numbers and food portions.

The less you have to think the better, right? And of course, WW and SW know this, which why their products/services are designed in a way that keeps you ignorant and somewhat satisfied.

But as you can see, being out of the know doesn’t pave the way to real success and self-mastery in the areas of weight loss and health.

What you ‘want’ is a service that is easy. But what you ‘need’ is to be in the Know of how weight loss works for your body and how nutrition works for your goal.

Replacing Science With Stolidity 

WW and SW conceal the scientific factors behind weight loss and give their products a fancy name that appeals to you.

Words like calories, exercise, deficit, energy, TEF (Thermic effect of food), macronutrients, etc., are withdrawn and instead replaced with words that fit with a theme – points, red days, green days, etc.

And of course, this naive approach has worked for a minority of people. But again, there is a large number of individuals who don’t get on with the products and services, and it’s because the service is not providing the information people need.

The lack of scientific evidence and research is troubling. A consultant working for these brands cannot tell you the first thing about weight loss and nutrition from a biological or scientific perspective. All they can do is offer you a new meal plan or repeat the same jargon they told you from last week’s class.

To say that you can eat unlimited amounts of food x, y, and z would be hilarious if it weren’t sabotaging the progress of millions of individuals and leading them to a state of depression.

We have become so screwed up on the topic of weight loss that we don’t even know what to do or how to behave. It is not wonder why so many of suffer with cognitive dissonance and go from one diet to the next.

I mean, points? Let’s be clear about something; you don’t get points for ingesting a WW meal, you get calories. And if you don’t know how many calories your body needs you will never know if you are gaining or losing weight.

Back to my clients…. 

Sadly for Sarah and Jane, their dreams of living comfortable at a size 12 and 14 wasn’t happening anytime soon.

It’s not because they were unable to produce the results, it’s because they have no real understanding and awareness of the weight loss process.

  • They were never taught the importance of calories and how they affect the body’s metabolism in different ways.
  • They were never taught how to portion size correctly.
  • They were never taught how certain exercises affect the body in different ways (muscle increase and fat loss occur at different levels of activity).
  • They didn’t the mental tools to produce results consistently and had never been taught how to set realistic goals. Instead, they had cliche advice from individuals who were struggling just as much.
  • They were not taught how to handle stress, setbacks and weight loss plateaus (at least, not from a professional and scientific perspective).
  • They didn’t understand how certain foods and exercise regimes influence their hormones, which either hinder progress and speed things up – water retention, restlessness, low mood are common symptoms.

Jane and Sarah didn’t need to be scientists or experts on weight loss to lead a balanced lifestyle and get the results they desired.

All they needed was correct guidance and support, instead of using brands that earn millions of pounds each year from the same people who keep showing up.

Jane and Sarah had used the same system over and over again and it has never worked. The chances are, it never will.

Their lack of success had nothing to do with their potential as people. It did, however, have everything to do with the information they had been given.

Failure leaves a clue. If it’s not working there’s a reason why. A change of strategy towards you weight loss goals could be the difference between another year of complete failure, or a future of success.

The only way Jane and Sarah were going to move forward was by trying something new. While Weight Watchers and Slimming World has worked for many people, the big questions is, how long and based on what circumstances?

Life factors for certain individuals can either halt their progress or promote it. Most people don’t know what they are doing when it comes to losing weight.

Individuals put so much faith in brands without considering they are investing in a product that thrives on overweight people who don’t have a clue what they are doing.

Jane and Sarah were fed up of attending classes and following the same cycle.

The only information they had to go by was that of a company brand competing in a market. And most company brands exclude the necessary information a customer needs.

If customers were given all the answers they would lose weight and would no longer need to be customers.

Another thing, consultants who represent the company are trained by that company. They use language which represents the company product.

Weight Watchers and Slimming World consultants aren’t weight loss professionals. They are brand loyal customers working at a higher level, making a bit of cash on the side – like a cult.

Loyal customers and consultants defend WW and SW like fans do with their favourite celebrities. They are trapped in a cognitive bias where everything revolves around that brand.

And should someone tell them it doesn’t work, well, you are in trouble (be sure to read the comments of my attackers at the end of the article).

Recommendations That Actually Work!

1.Weight Loss Coaching

When I was 300-pounds obese and frustrated with my life, I could never anticipate that one day I would become a coach and empower others to lose weight.

Becoming coach didn’t just happen to me, it was a conscious decision. I became a coach because it gave me an opportunity to work with people on a personal level and track their success.

Instead of just giving advice and letting people figure out how to apply it, instead, I wanted to 100% certain that the information I provide can work!

Which is why I believe that coaching is one of the most powerful resources for weight loss.

Essentially, coaching is all about the client and helping them get to where they want to be. It’s a process that is focused one thing: getting you results.

As a coach, I can’t turn my back on you. It is my job is to assist you, mentor you, and track your success. I have a commitment to serve you for as long as you need me.

While a coach isn’t responsible for your efforts, a coach, however, is responsible for the trust, relationship, and professionalism of service to you.

You have one life to live and the quality of it is to be taken seriously. It is not to be wasted and screwed with by large companies with a sole interest in profits.

The reason I came to work with Jane and Sarah is because they came to notice what wasn’t working and they reached out to me.

They signed up to my free weight loss letter and read ‘How I lost my first 30 pounds (a free ebook you get when you sign up to my weekly newsletter).

Today, Jane and Sarah are in the midst of a life changing process. We’re working on real goals and  losing the weight with the correct knowledge.

We intend to keep the results not just for the short-term, but for the long-term.  We’re doing Skype coaching sessions online at one-hour a week (30-minute sessions twice a week at an agreed time).

We focus on goals and discuss topics that lead us to success. If Jane and Sarah also take the opportunity to ask about my background, and I share my experiences on what worked (and what didn’t work) during my weight loss journey.

I reviewed Jane and Sarah’s food intake and helped them develop an eating plan that was based on their lifestyles and food tastes.

Jane and Sarah will save over £1,000 this year. A month of coaching together is enough to turn their lives around for the better.

If you are interested in my services, you can enquire by clicking the link here. Note: please allow  me 6-12-hours to respond as I manage my emails personally.

32. Read Books or Listen To Audio Books – do both 

One of the best uses of your time would be to explore the subject of weight loss for yourself through books.

By sitting down and digging into the science behind weight loss, you will get a real understanding of the process for yourself.

You will never have to spend another penny on a brand when you have the information for yourself. However, for a lot of people, reading is not a process that is appealing at this point in their lives.

10-years ago, if someone asked me to read a book, I used to laugh.

Reading is process that comes by through inspiration or desperation. You have to truly desire reading for the benefit of your health and goals.

But, how easy for me to say right? So if you don’t have time to read then I suggest trying out audiobooks. Just 30-minutes of listening before you go to sleep is all you need to enhance your state of mind and improve on these subjects.

There’s a range of downloadable books to listen to online that can give you solid advice on the weight loss process.

3. Join My Free Newsletter 

Every week I keep my readers updated with exclusive weight loss information, tips and advice. I don’t spam or promote BS. I write all my emails and provide only the most useful resources.

Sign-up free below and join me.

Last Note

The bottom line is, I want people to reach a place in life where the fear of being overweight or gaining weight is no longer an issue.

It’s a place I’ve been able to reach in my life, and no weight loss brand did it for me. Where I am today is a direct result of learning and taking action.

As I coach, I assist people in making their weight loss goals a reality. There is no agenda other than to serve a community of people who need help – it’s a job I decided to do based on my life experiences.

I want to thank you for reading and taking the time to be at my website.

And please, do to take advantage of all the free resources I’ve linked below as they will assist you on this journey.

I hope we work together soon, and if not not, I wish you the best of luck with all your goals.

Take care,

 – Nathan Hewitt, Weight Loss coach & Motivational Strategist.

P.S. Leave a comment as I want to know your thoughts and experiences about this subject. Also, I appreciate that this is a controversial topic that may annoy some of you, and as much as I enjoy a heated discussion from time to time, please try to keep the personal attacks at bay. Otherwise, I’m not going to take you seriously.

Articles You Might Also Enjoy:

How Intermittent Fasting Helped Me Lose Weight And Improve My Lifestyle

50 Of The Best Foods For Weight Loss (Benefits Included)

The 10-Day Weight Loss Challenge

Why You Can Lose Weight Eating Junk Food

Counting Calories: How To Eat The Foods You Love And Lose Weight Using This Simple Rule

How I Lost 150 Pounds, Overcame Loose Skin And Got Ripped (photos included)

58 Comments
  1. Great article. People should be more aware of this stuff. Companies like weight watches are a paradox. They seem to want to help people, but make their money on people returning every single week… for years! Sounds like a scam to me!

  2. It’s all true. I’m glad to making the new changes in my life with Nathan’s help. It’s going great so far.

  3. Story of my life! I gave up on weight watchers a long time ago. I’m still trying to lose weight, but I do want to learn more. What you said is so true. I think If I know how my body works then I’ll be able to take charge like these women.

  4. I have been doing slimming world for 4 months; I’ve lost almost 3 stone. I am now a size 16 rather than a size 22, and able to fit into new clothes each week.
    I have dieted my whole life, and never achieved good or consistant weight loss until I did slimming world. My friend lost 5 stone on it. It DOES work, thats just a fact. Someone I work with lost 10 stone doing slimming world.
    Its not a diet; its a lifestyle change. No, it won’t work if you reach your target and go right back to how you always ate, of course it won’t! The idea is you change your habits so they become instinct. And given we just had christmas, and I still didn’t actually WANT to pig out like I have every year until now, it definitely does change your brain.

    You can say what you like, but my weight loss doesn’t lie, nor does that of my friends who have lost twice as much or more than me, and are still going strong.

    Yes, some weeks, you can stick to plan and only lose a pound; had it happen. Thats normal. And if you’re a woman, its expected at certain times of the month (some women can gain up to 8 lbs just from fluid retention on their period) but weight loss evens out to around 2lbs a week, which is the recommended rate of loss to be healthy.

    Frankly, I hate articles like this that try to belittle diets that have helped an enormous amount of people. If you aren’t losing on it fairly consistently, you’re not doing it right. Bottom line. Don’t blame that on the diet…..

    • Hi Kate, there is no mention of Slimming World not working, or that it doesn’t help people.

      This post is based on the experience of two individuals and myself.

      The premise of this post is about weight loss and education. If more people understood the science behind weight loss and were able to lose weight based on their own intelligence rather than a brand, people would save a lot of money and frustration.

      The questions are: Can You lose weight for the long-term without the use of a company? Do You have the inner resources to lose weight based on Your own intelligence? And how much have You spent during your life?

      If people aren’t losing weight fairly consistently, shouldn’t they have the personal knowledge to know why? I want people to claim those resources as their own. I want people to know that they have the tools to lose weight without emptying their pockets for months and years.

      I am glad that you have achieved success with your weight so far. It works for you and that’s all that matters.

      – Nathan Hewitt

      • I did Slimming World for 5 months & lost 1/2lb ! The leader couldn’t offer any reason why at all & told me it was due to it being “star” week – this didn’t account for all the others though !! I’m a fit 48 year old woman with no reason not to lose weight. It just didn’t work – I kept diaries, was on plan to the letter, I couldn’t have done more.
        I’ve also tried Weightwatchers which also hasn’t worked & I don’t know what to do now. I want to reduce my body weight from 11s 11lb to 10s 4lb. I know my metabolism gets slower due to age but this is ridiculous !

        • Hi there Tracey,

          thanks for sharing your experience. These issues related to Slimming World and Weight Watchers are becoming more and more common.

          Slimming World consultants are mostly trained in the areas of marketing. They are more equipped with skills to market a service than actually give out practical advice. Some of these skills include

          – Promoting the company brand to their local area
          – Using social media to engage fans about the brand
          – Creating posters and learning how to use words to capture attention
          – Advertising new products and seasonal diets, etc.

          Everything you see and read from Weight Watchers and Slimming World is deliberate. It’s made to grab your attention.
          The next time you see a service advertised, look at the way it relates you. It makes you want to BUY.

          So these companies are more about storytelling and using advertisements to get you invested. A consultant cannot offer you information that is supported by scientific facts. They can only tell you to follow plan A,B and C, hoping you will get a result.

          If you fail. The blame is put on you, not their service.

          My advice is this: Learn as much as you can about weight loss for yourself. Don’t rely on a company. Research online. Read the correct books. Gain your own personal insight.

          When you have the knowledge in these areas based on your own learning, you are now in charge.

          Thanks again,

          Nathan Hewitt

      • Nathan

        I find your comment odd. There is no difference between Kate seeking help and support of a slimming world class or you twice a week on Skype. I’d imagine both would cost money!

        Well written Kate.

        • Got to agree with that! Once you’ve been to slimming world for a few weeks, you could easily follow the diet at home and lose weight without paying for group. In much the same way that you can eat healthily and exercise and lose weight without additional support. The whole point of slimming world is that you have a support network behind you every step of the way. I decided to join after I spent over a year trying to eat healthily. I joined and lost 24lbs in 5 months. The idea is that you go for support and friendship. I’m at target now, I don’t pay anymore, but I still go!! I have lifelong friends, and myself and the other target members are an encouragement to the new members who are striving to get to there target.

          Nathan, how about, instead of focusing on the negatives, try and be a more positive person, for example, “SW and WW are great, well done on trying to eat well and get healthy, but if they don’t work for you it might be time to try something else. Had you thought about…….”

          By being critical of other methods he is coming across as jealous and bitter. SW works for hundreds of thousands of people. I think he’s just cross he didn’t think of it first. God bless Margaret Miles Bramwell, may she sail her boat around the Balearics for many years to come. She has worked hard and earned a fortune. That to me is good business, and she did it without being horrid to any others.

    • I wholeheartedly agree with you Kate. I joined slimming world in July 15 with 1st 10lb to loose. Well i achieved my target last night and went from a size 14 to a 10. I gave tried other diets and even diet pills but nothing works like SW. It is a lifestyle change and you have to Want to loose weight. There’s no point in doing any diet if you stick to it some days and other days just think ‘oh sod it I can’t be bothered’

    • Well said Kate! Slimming World has changed my life forever and I now help others do the same every week ❤️

  5. Hello, I wish for to subscribe for this weblog to take most recent updates, therefore where can i do it please assist.

  6. Dear Nathan Hewitt,

    how do I get your services? do you work in London?
    How much do you charge?

    Let me know, thanks.

    regards

    delia

  7. All very well writing an article about how corporate profitability creates a conflict of interest with dieters. I appreciate this, but I will also bear in mind that actually you wrote this article for your own profit motives.

    • Sorry to hear that my friend,

      Although this website features hundreds of articles, e-books, and news letters, all of which are focused on helping people at no cost at all.

      I offer my readers the chance to experience results with me one-to-one and it’s a privilege to get paid doing a job I love, working with new people and changing lives.

      Thanks for reading.

  8. Slimming world Consultants have diplomas to back them up! and extensive nutrition training and have back up from a nutrition team in the UK

    • Lou Lou,

      just about anyone can get a nutrition and training diploma (Groupon do great deals).
      However, the fact is many obese people out there still struggle with the SW procedures.

      I never say these brands don’t work.

      Nathan

    • Slimming World consultants have diplomas…..issued by Slimming World no doubt.

      I attended two different groups in different towns, at different times, whenever I asked questions about the plan all was good, however, neither consultant knew anything about nutrition as a whole.

  9. Nathan,

    Without wishing to upset you I never read such an ill informed and frankly very misleading article. Did you just make this article up as a piece of fiction? None of what you claim is true. So I will address the five points you make.

    .
    They didn’t understand what calories were and how they effect the body’s metabolism in different ways.

    This statement is false my SW consultant is very keen to educate her members about these matters and she ensures that everyone fully understans the issues.

    They didn’t understand what exercise does to the body and how it could either increase or halt their progress.

    Good god man you have obviously never studied SW at all. SW actively encourage all members to exercise and offer rewards for doing that exercise. SW refer to it as body magic, which is run along side and is completely complimentary to the structure of the diet.

    They didn’t have the mental tools to produce results consistently and had never been taught how to set realistic goals.

    Again complete and utter rubbish every SW consultant helps their members set realistic targets short medium and long term. These targets are constantly reviewed and are very realistic according to the status of the individual.

    They were not taught how to handle stress, setbacks and weight loss plateaus.

    Again another false claim SW consultants address all psychological aspects of the slimming process and greatly assist overcoming these issues.

    They didn’t understand how certain foods and exercise regimes influence their hormones, which either hinder progress and speed things up.

    Well I don’t think I need comment further. You have just fabricated this claim it is done so without any knowledge or fact.

    Have you sat at screen and listed your bigoted assumptions to pathetic attempt to bolster your own business. May I remind you that SW has thousands of members who have reached target weights and have very successfully adjusted their life styles with the complete support of SW.

    I am obviously not a lawyer but some of the claims you make verge in my opinion on libel.

    David

    • Hi David, no upset here.

      I never said SW didn’t work for people. However, there are obese individuals in the country who don’t get along with their procedures, and I offer a more personal service, helping them to lose weight where mainstream weight loss brands had failed them.

      What I share at the website are my experiences.

      If you took the time and read my bio I mention how I do a lot for young adults and children with obesity and that I come from a place of compassion and not to bolster my business ( a lot of my work and help is free).

      You have some strong points in your argument that I can appreciate. But again, this is my experience. And my experience is subjective.

      This is a controversial topic. And I think people should read the entire article and decide for themselves.

      Nathan

    • Hi There,

      Sorry but you are talking nonsense! My SW Consultant is clueless and is causing sheer frustration and upset in her groups. Everyone is demotivated. She cannot be bothered and or lacks the knowledge to help anyone. She doesn’t understand diabetes, IBS, high blood pressure or anything else. She lost 3stone and became a consultant. She now doesn’t eat very much and “drinks” her syns. what kind of a healthy eating and lifestyle advocate is that??? This Nathan guy is telling it how it is. Maybe you’re lucky and have a great consultant …..but for everyone there is at least 10 that aren’t. That’s from my personal experience and that of 600 group members I know of!

      • i agree with you too.
        I am not getting on very well at my SW group, my counsultant was on the large size and lost 3 stone then became who she is now to help others
        I have not lost anything in the 4 weeks i have been there and all she could say to me is better luck next time and would you like a food diary.

  10. Hi Nathan,

    I can see you are quite defensive about any negative comments on this article but I am afraid I have to agree with Kate and the others. I have recently joined slimming world and I am enjoying it, its great to nourish my body and lose weight – and the support of my SW class and consultant is great.
    Basically, the way I see it, you have (quite cleverly) discredited SW and WW in your article in order to push your own agenda……which, if I am not mistaken, comes at a price!! I understand you have a lot of free resources etc but they are a great marketing tool to get sales conversions and get people to hire you…which is absolutely fine – its business and you need to earn money too. My problem is that you are providing negative information on SW and WW without any real evidence.

    WW and SW will work if the individual is willing to make life changes….and I am sure that your coaching will benefit someone greatly if they are willing to listen, participate and make the life changes that you recommend…so bottom line is that SW and WW will not work if ‘Jane’ and ‘Sarah’ do not put the work into it – and I hate to break it to you but the same goes for your coaching…the individual has to make the change(long term) and if they don’t then no diet/healthplan/coaching programme will ever be successful.

  11. What a load of rubbish LOL! Get a life.

  12. Hi Nathan
    I got up this morning with the intention of starting my usual Monday diet which invariably ends by Wednesday and then I feel like I have failed
    I typed in weight watchers as I am a lifetime member of the group but now the information about healthy eating has changed so much I was considering rejoining
    Your article has made me think twice
    I joined ww 22 years ago and very quickly lost 2 stone as I was eating healthy food and measuring out portions
    I managed to keep my weight stable for 5 years and then gradually gained some of it back
    I tried slimming world with my daughter but found it went against everything I had been taught about weight loss
    The idea of being able to eat unlimited amounts of pasta rice and potatoes just didn’t seem right however I followed the plan for a week and lost 3.5 pounds on my first week
    I didn’t stay a member because going to the group meetings and placing so much trust in the scales is not for me
    I do believe any eating plan will work if you follow it religiously but my concern is the psychological damage when the scales don’t tell them what they want and that can start a whole new cycle of negative feelings which usually leads to over indulging in food or drink and low self esteem

    I believe getting correct nutritional information and understanding your own body is the way to maintain a healthy weight and more importantly to live a happy and fulfilled life
    Just wanted to add that I joined the SW club in a January and the following year my daughter wanted to rejoin
    The leader was considerably bigger than she was the year before
    That answered my question of whether rejoining was worth the money

    • Hi Pauline, thank you for sharing.

      Your experiences are the kind that motivated me to write this kind of article.
      What you said about getting the correct nutrition and understanding your own body, I believe is key.

      Before I began working as a coach, I had family members attend Slimming World classes and I witnessed for myself the demoralising effect of stepping on the scales and not seeing the results. And like you said, it creates a cycle of negative feelings which leads to overeating.

      If we understood how food and our body’s work, we’d have mastery over the process. No more relying on companies.
      This article has come under controversy because it goes against what people want to believe. But the truth is the truth.
      And your experiences along with many others support it.

      Thanks again Pauline,

      NH

      • Nathan,

        I was intending to rejoin weight watchers this week as Being on and off diets for almost 40 years I decided in September to finish with slimming world and I have since gained 3 stones!
        Reading your article makes so much sense to me. I have been to both of the aforementioned classes for years and I have come to the conclusion that they are money making companies who are trained to almost brainwash people to follow them.
        I Asked a question about my weight last week at sw and was hurried along as there was a queue waiting to pay, I think this says it all.
        I agree they are very nice people generally but I believe they are primed to make money and this is their main objective as in all big companies.
        Until my eyes were opened I think I would maybe have thought on similar lines to the people who are reacting badly to you, but for a long time now I have disagreed with fat free diets as I have been more interested in nutrition and how good fats are needed ie Avocados which are a syn at sw.
        I also agree about the alcohol that someone mentioned being more important than the food as I have often thought I have stepped in to an AA meeting.
        Lastly they always say this is not a diet but it is.

        Karen

        • Hi Karen,

          Thank you for sharing your experiences with Weight Watchers and Slimming World.
          It’s good to get an opinion from someone who has had experience with both these classes and has been trying to diet for many years.

          And of course, I totally agree with what you’re saying. There is a lack of information provided by these brands. Instead, the information is condensed into a package that suits a particular market of people, but it lacks fundamental truth

          I hope more people will begin to see that these brands don’t offer a long-term approach to weight loss because anything that disregards the importance of calories is ignoring our biology and the laws of thermodynamics.

          With a little self-education in the areas of nutrition, I believe people can master their nutritional needs and requirements without having to spend a penny on another brand. This is something I hope to help people accomplish at my website.

          Thanks again for sharing Karen,

          NH

  13. I started Sw and it works for me but i also considered getting help from someone like Nathan since i clearly had issues understanding what im doing wrong ( otherwise i wouldn’t of ended up the size i am ). Im losing weight with sw and my mindset is changing but my sw consultant is rubbish but lucky me my head works and i have the internet and was able to do the research and find the info my consultant didn’t provide me with.

    Nathan you helping a lot of people and if sw wouldn’t of worked for me i would of ended up asking you for help im sure but as most people state you can drag the horse to the water but cant make it drink it.. same for the ladies who seemed to get stuck and didn’t lose weight on sw or ww if you but the effort in and stick to it it will work but your mind set has to change otherwise it will just be hopless.

    • Hi Julia, thank you for sharing.

      You’ve pointed out the most important part about losing weight, and that’s the mindset.
      I think no matter what diet or company you use if your head is in the right place, you’ll seek whatever resources necessary to get where you want to be.

      If there is one thing SW/WW can do is positively shape eating habits. Naturally, people eat better on the diets provided. But, it’s a question of how long will those diets work. One year? Forever?

      While these companies don’t deal with the psychological aspects of losing weight as much (something which is my main focus), if you already got the psychology down, I think you can do well for a period of time. Problems usually occur when the weight loss stops and people are left wondering why? There is a lot of information left out within these companies. And consultants don’t provide scientifically backed up information to point you in the right path.

      A lot of what I do is help people who hit roadblocks in their fat loss goals. After all, you can only eat a certain number of calories for so long until the weight loss stops. This is where I come in.

      Again, thanks for sharing Julia, and best of luck on your journey.

      NH

  14. Interesting reading,positive ‘food for thought’ excuse the pun,readers who have been on the SW/WW dieting merrygoround for years will surely find this interesting,and a different approach that should be considered, when my interst in SW began to droop my consultant said ‘just keep coming to class’,no help or discussion offered, it was then I heard kerching,rather disheartning to a regular attender,thanks Nathan.

    • Hi Pat,

      Thanks for sharing and calling attention to the problems I’ve discussed here.

      Many times I’ve heard people talk about the lack of communication with their SW consultant, and the advice they receive is common place. Some consultants have SW as a part-time gig for an extra income, while some do it full-time. And we must remember, they need people to keep coming back, otherwise they don’t have a job.

      And these classes are popping up everywhere. The question, how many people can they keep coming back in a local area? If people were to really satisfied with the help of SW, there would be no customer base left in these local areas.

      NH

  15. I’ve read the article and all the comments – I found this page as I’ve been doing SW for 10 weeks and lost a stone and a half so far, which is fine as a start, but I have had a number of doubts around the programme and in particular finding any science to shed light on why I can eat up to 3,500 extra weekly calories as syns and subsequently accelerate my weight loss (1 syn = 20 calories, a man has a 25 daily syn allowance)

    Most of the comments seem to be addressing the same side of the argument – do SW & WW help people to lose weight…Yes. Is it the optimal way…not in my opinion, but it’s a start in the right direction.

    And this is how I view my SW experience, as a start, as the first step of a longer journey that ultimately only I want to be in control of.

    I have two weeks left of my paid-up 12 week SW package and will not be renewing at the end of it, my only concern is around trying to go it alone, which is where I see value in Skype mentoring, for example.

    My next education is to look at what my BMR is, how active I am, and therefore what I need to eat to achieve my goals; other learnings will quickly involve me reading up on the key differences between 1 calorie of fat vs 1 calorie of protein vs 1 calorie of carbohydrate and how they impact my body at different times.

    Like with SW I will be keeping a food diary and tracking what works better for my body, but I want to take ownership, I need to take ownership to improve my overall wellbeing.

    Thanks for the article, I found it interesting and thought-provoking.

    • Hi Steve, thank you for sharing.

      You’ve highlighted some really good points. And I agree, I think it is a good start, especially if someone hasn’t had a lot of experience with dieting.

      And then, of course, it’s after losing that initial weight where complications arise.

      As you continue your journey without SW, I believe that if you stick to some ground rules, you will do fine.
      One of these rules could by keeping a food journal, which is something I’ve been doing for years and enjoy.
      I also know my daily calorie requirements, and I stick to the same meals for a period, and then I mix my meals up again.

      For example, I may eat a particular breakfast, lunch, and dinner every day for 12 weeks. And then, I’ll change them for another 12 weeks, and so on. In a way, I’m already tracking my calories even without counting, because I don’t step outside my rules.

      Anyway Steve, thanks again for reading. And I wish all the best on your weight loss journey.

      Take care,

      NH

  16. Hi there. I believe sw is good at teaching people how to start eating more healthy and that can only be a good thing. I have been dieting for the last 25 years and I keep going up and down in my weight. I fully understand foods and the calories and how much stuff I should be having but every now and again I just start bingeing on junk food for a few months, put all my weight back on and piss myself off.

    A few weeks ago my partner joined sw and she’s been making meals from the recipes that they provide and I have been joining in and eating them, I have to say they are quite nice and taste better than the crap I’ve been eating and I am losing weight and I can see why cos when I scrutinised the ingredients there isn’t a lot of calories in these meals but they do taste quite good. It’s making me realise that I should be changing the type of foods that I eat instead of all the shitty foods that I’ve been eating all my life. Anyway let’s see how it goes.
    Regards
    Mick..

  17. Hi guys,
    its nice to find a discussion that is not a part of the large PR Machine. I will share with you my personal unbiased opinion as I just joined the slimming world (only two days). I’m the kind of person who loves science and periodically read all sorts of scientific articles about nutrition, dieting, food, metabolism, etc.
    I’m in my second day of Slimming world diet and I must admit that I have absolutely no believe in effectiveness of this diet.
    I just cant see any reason for not getting fat if you consume so much calories and plus extra syns that sounds like a nightmare. The only reason I joined this club is because some of my colleagues lost significant amount of weight through this dieting, and I witnessed it. But I’m still not convinced. I searched for hours but didn’t find anything online explaining why people loose weight. To me it’s just filling your stomach with all the low calorie stuff so you have less space for junk food. And this might work for overly obese people. Because yes your daily calorie intake might then stay within 3000 but because obese people consume more calorie, it works well for them for a while. That’s what I think but I will give it 5 more days just to get to the next meeting and prove it to myself. Im 12 size and I want to get back to my shape of 8. Today after second day of enjoying loads of carb, I definately exceeded my 2000 day calories limit so there is no way this diet can make you loose weight. And I honestly look now fatter than I was 3 days ago. Oh and my weight is also heavier. But I might be told that it’s just water retention, so to avoid all this non sence excuses I will wait 5 more days 🙂 and the get the hell out of the group! 🙂

    At least all the other diets tried to explain the scientific reasons behind the weight loss, such as dukan, Atkins, etc. People in SW are just like groups of arrogant people who have been brainwashed by some superficial beliefes, and when you are there trying to ask question and find answers, they look at you as if you are some sort of weirdo.
    I do find all this strange and I will moth or both myself and the group to reassure myself. If gain weight I will leave and if I loose any, I swear I will worship Sw. So far it just doesn’t seem to be realistic at all.
    Will keep you updated 🙂

    • Hi Olivia,

      Just thought I would reply as I am in a similar situation, I am in SW group myself where most of the members are quite large size 18+ I am an average 12 looking to go down to an 8 and I had the same reservations.

      For a long time no one explained to me how this diet can work when you are allowed so many free foods such as bread, rice, pasta, potatoes.

      But the science behind it is that a jacket potato for example for lunch worth around 77 calories and a large salad & some chicken for lunch sounds stodgy but actually your looking at a less than 300 cals and should fill you up until dinner time and leaves less chances for high cal food etc.

      however a pre made sandwich and cereal bar from like Tesco your looking at around 600-700 cals! even though it doesn’t seem unhealthy.

      Basically the idea of SW is that you fill up on the likes of starchy vegetables & protein. But they allow for the syns so that your body does not crave them during the diet & less likely to binge. remember 1/3 of your plate for each meal should have ‘speed’ aka vegetables, greens etc!

      Dairy is also restricted due to caloric density but allowed for your health as u need healthy amounts of fats and calcium! hence why u choose your hexA allowance each day! same with the list of foods that are hexB.

      If you follow those rules you should lose weight easily! 🙂

  18. I have looked at the comments on here and find it all very interesting. I can see both sides of the coin. I am in Slimming World and I am a target member. I have slipped in and out quite a few times not by much,but I know it’s my mindset at the time that has caused this. My Consultant is absolutely brilliant and is very knowledgeable. Two of the previous Consultants I had the privilege to know have become coaches such as yourself,so have gone on from Slimming World but again these were very experienced Consultants. Not everyone wants to go each week to a group and individual coaching would suit them. I am just glad that I know what I need to do to keep weight at bay and I enjoy going to a group because it’s lovely to share tips and recipes etc. I like the camaraderie and the fun time we have. It brings me out of myself because I am quiet and quite shy. I think what you are doing is admirable to and if people are not losing weight through SW or WW or whatever then coaching is worth a try. Yes it will incur cost but doesn’t everything.

    • Hi Jacqueline,

      Thanks for commenting and sharing. It’s nice to hear that you’ve had a good experience with SW and that it works for you.
      I believe having a good consultant (leader) is also key to the services these brands offer. We all know that people do better around people with good energy and knowledge.

      I wish you great success on your weight loss journey,

      NH

  19. I did Weight Watchers for about a month and it did work for me. I also used the Dr. Max Powers Burn for about 2 weeks and even my friends have really noticed a difference. I am at that age where weight is really hard to budge. The Max Powers Burn combined with Weight Watchers has made a huge difference. Although I also have a load more energy.

    • Hi Kandi,

      I’m glad things are working out for you and that WW has been a suitable resource for your lifestyle.
      I hope the good work continues.

      All the best,

      NH

  20. I’ve tried weight watches. For three while weeks and lost nothing. I tried slimming world for a full six months and lost a stone and half. I left as I was five lbs from target. I ended up back at slimming world a year later 2 stone heavier than I was in the first place! I have been back for a few weeks here and there and have been losing not alot each week. But since xmas I have been every single week and stuck to plan like glue and have lost a stone so far.. you realy have to do 100 percent.. And ignore the eat how much you like of free foods.. I portion size if I don’t I gain or maintain. But tje fact I get weighed each in front of people is what keeps me motivated. I could proberly do it all on my own.. if a had a good set of scales! But I don’t as they sell those damn good hi fi bars only in sodding group.. of they seller them in the shops I’d proberly do it all by my self!

  21. I’ve tried weight watches. For three whole weeks and lost nothing. I tried slimming world for a full six months and lost a stone and half. I left as I was five lbs from target. I ended up back at slimming world a year later 2 stone heavier than I was in the first place! I have been back for a few weeks here and there and have been losing not alot each week. But since xmas I have been every single week and stuck to plan like glue and have lost a stone so far.. you realy have to do it 100 percent.. And ignore the eat how much you like of free foods.. I portion size if I don’t I gain or maintain. But the fact I get weighed each week in front of people is what keeps me motivated. I could proberly do it all on my own.. if a had a good set of scales! But I don’t.. and as they sell those damn good hi fi bars only in sodding group.. if they selled them in the shops I’d proberly do it all by my self!

    • Hey Rebecca,

      It looks like SW is your ‘go-to’ to shift some excess weight, which is great if it works.

      I think another problem many of us face is options and price range. SW and WW prices can be fairly reasonable for the short-term. Plus, these brands are well established making them a convenient first choice.

      The question is, however, if not SW and WW what else?

      While there are dozens of services available, SW have built their brand to the point of getting instant trust for their services. Many weight loss brands haven’t nailed that yet.

      But again, it’s a shame we have to rely on these brands in the first place. My messages has always been simple when it comes to weight loss: Learn, apply and own the process. Don’t let a company sell us on our dream size.

      All the best

      x

  22. Nathan my hero.
    Love this article. Unfortunately I have friends and family who are under SW spell and have been bewitched and believe it to be the be all of life. God forbid people around them (like myself) are against it. I’m seen as someone who lacks motivation and apparently doesn’t realise the brilliant lifestyle that is SW -_-
    How they don’t realise that losing weight that fast is unhealthy is beyond me. I could go on forever. But you’ve covered it so well.
    Thanks again for this. I was falling into depression watching them quote it puppets.

    • Hi there, I’m glad you liked the article.

      And I totally feel you. These brands should come with a warning sign that says: Any attempt to analyse, evaluate and form an opinion on our services will have severe consequences.

      Thanks for reading,

      NH

  23. I am a fully trained Life/Career Coach with an interest in diet and exercise. Nathan I am all for promoting yourself and trying to gain new business, good for you. However using the name of other successful companies in a negative way, to promote yourself….. very un-professional and a great distraction. If you are as good as you’d like us to believe, just promote yourself. Find satisfied customers to give you reviews and just, promote, promote, promote. The way you have reacted to some of your critics, leaves me to wonder if you really know what you are talking about?

    • Rozadoza,

      I appreciate the suggestion, and for some career paths they are indeed beneficial; however, I like to write about controversial topics. I’m also very passionate about the subject and want readers to know the truth.

      As far as my reactions to readers, well… that’s me. It’s my blog and I don’t bullshit people. Like it or hate it, I don’t pretend to be someone I’m not and scam people into my services with character fakeness.

      NH

  24. This has all been very interesting reading – a little tiresome in places where people have become so heated, but interesting all the same. I have struggled with my weight only losing small amounts at a time and then piling on more than I have lost, for all of my adult life. This probably sounds familiar to a lot of people!

    In the last 8 months I have lost weight and to be honest it is irrelevant who with (its just a personal choice for that support I need). I have lost 4 stone so far and have another 4 stone to go, so still a long journey ahead.

    The reason I feel compelled to write is that maintaining the weight loss has always concerned me – I do not want to lose 8 stone and continue to go to the group for support indefinitely, but neither do I want to put the weight back on. This has led me to take a long hard look at why I am susceptible or have been susceptible to weight gain.

    I’m not saying I have cracked it, but I think I have a good idea………I have never lost weight while looking at “me” as a whole (that often talked about holistic approach!). It is important to be happy first or at least during the weight loss journey – truly happy, whether you are overweight or not. With the exception of how your weight makes you feel, are you happy and content with life? Are you in a loving relationship? Are you happy in your job? Are your children (if you have any) doing well? If any of these things are out of kilter, then I think anyone with weight issues will struggle to maintain weight loss, as we tend to be people who will turn to food for comfort and to make ourselves happier…….I am personally tackling my weight loss from a truly happy place for the first time in my life and therefore believe this will help me maintain that loss.

    Just my thoughts, but an interesting read Nathan, thank you.
    T

    • Hi Tammy,

      Thank you for sharing your experiences.

      I’m glad to hear you are in a good place and making steady progress with your goals.

      I wish you all the best during your journey.

      NH

  25. As a Slimming World user, and one who is successfully losing weight at what I consider to be a realistic and sustainable rate, I found this article lacked a basic understanding of the SW business model, their consultants and those who use the business model for support and motivation.

    A few things to consider:

    1 – Without a doubt, SW encourages a more balanced diet and better control over what goes into your mouth. Better eating habits, when combined with even a moderately active lifestyle, should promote a calorie deficit to help you lose weight. SW achieves this consistently and in vast numbers.

    2 – My consultant is amazing. She’s a tower of strength in a battle I haven’t been able to win on my own. With her help, support, advice and undoubted knowledge, everything is moving in the right direction. I’ve never felt so positive about weight loss, and it shows on the scales.

    3 – Having the support of a large company and network behind you is a huge benefit. Professional cookery books compiled using scientific research and sold at very competitive prices provide dieters not just with the tools they need to lose weight, but also with the scope required to stop weight loss becoming mundane. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg because they’ve though of everything for people like me. SW make money from ready meals? Good luck to them! Like any other company, they supply products and services to people within their target sector. There’s a definite need for those products and services, and it works well for everybody.

    Why should personal trainers be allowed to make a few bucks from their clients but a multinational company can’t?

    4 – Group support is also essential. Organisations such as AA, GA and NA use group support to combat addiction. For some, unhealthy eating displays many of the typical characteristic associated with other addictions. The support of the group is integral to success, and it’s the best fiver I spend all week (considerably less than the amount I’d have spent in the pub or even from food in my own fridge over the course of a weekday evening.

    Nathan – I understand you want to sell your own services and good luck to you in doing so, but your talk of ‘Ugly Truth’ with absolutely nothing to substantiate that there actually is any ugly truth all seems a bit bizarre.

    • Hi Paul,

      I appreciate you taking the time to share a lengthy comemment. Very good points made, and I’m glad your experience is going well.

      Again, I can’t stress how Slimming World is not without its flaws. The fact is, many people don’t lose weight with these brands.

      Currently, you’re in the midst of a weight los journey. You have yet to demonstrate long term weight loss with the use of these brands – my hope is that you will. And should you reach your ideal weight and maintain it, your argument will be better supported.

      Many of the people I work with have struggled with these brands for 5+ years and don’t lose weight with them. That’s just a fact.

      I wish you best on your journey.

      NH

  26. I have reached personal targets by myself and have used Weigt Watchers slimming world. Both the consultants were pretty poor to be honest but with ww I was determined to do it and so I did and carried on going until I reached target and that was the end of attending for me. I then maintained for a year or so before starting to put weight back on when my husband went back to work and stopped cooking all the family meals. I detest cooking so would do it for the children and then eat rubbish myself… anyway I tried SW and thought the ideas behind it were clearly towards more healthy habits than Ww but it meant more cooking and as I mentioned the consultant was just not good at her job and the push on rubbish SW bars etc was a bit much… anyway if people love the groups and find the support helpful and if it helps then great but I agree it’s nothing people can’t do at home and understanding nutrition as opposed to talking in points, syns etc just makes sense. I enjoyed your article.

    • Hi Samantha,

      Thanks for sharing your experiences. I totally agree. If it works for some people, great. But it’s better to be able to walk away and say, “I now have the skills and knowledge to do this on my own”.

      NH

  27. I appreciate the article but i find it a tad unprofessional to flame another company to promote your own buisness.

    I was a size 28, I have slimmed down to a size 10-12 and lost nearly 12 stone on SW over 26 months and I am still losing! I attend regular classes and wont be giving up soon, the reason being is the support group, i have made friends who i share my experiences with and take an hour of “me” time to do so, we support one another. The group is something that you do not offer. The support of others is 2nd to none. When you can offer the same then feel free to comment on the plan.

    The consultants are knowledgable and understand if you feel upset or have a problem with your weightloss, they understand that everyones journey is different, not everyone will drop 3-4lbs a week and some people do only lose 1/2 a week.

    A better way to go about things Nathan would be to promote your services based on your own merit and not try to bias people against other diets, if people wish to choose SW or WW, let them as everyone works differently. Not every plan will work for everyone, your plan may not even work for some people.

    Good luck with your buisness.

    • Hi Aki,

      Thanks for commenting and well done on achieving your weight loss goal – amazing work.
      You made some valid points, and I’m glad SW has worked out well for you.

      This is a controversial topic that gets two different types of responses: positive and negative. I accept and welcome both, regardless of what you may consider professional or unprofessional.

      You mentioned the word biased. I would like to point out that your response is a bias. Things worked out well for you, so of course, you are going to praise SW. And you will likely recommend SW without question, accepting no criticism against the brand while defending them to the very end.

      The fact is: not everyone will experience the same success as you. I’ve merely pointed out the reasons why.

      I have a question: What didn’t you like about Slimming World? If you can’t answer that, then I rest my case.

      NH

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