What works in weight management? Find out on Wednesday

By Hank Schultz contact

- Last updated on GMT

Getty Images
Getty Images

Related tags: Obesity rates, Obesity, Nutrition, Weight management

What works in weight management? That’s what a webinar scheduled for Wednesday aims to find out.

NutraIngredients-USA’s Weight Management Webinar is scheduled for 11:30 AM Central time this Wednesday.  The hour long FREE event will feature speakers Guru Ramanathan, PhD, former chief innovation officer at GNC, consultant Tim Avila, principal in the firm Systems Bioscience, Dr Hector Lopez, MD, who wears many hats at the chief medical officer of the CRO Center for Applied Health Sciences, as a principal in the adverse event reporting company Supplement Safety Solutions as well as in private practice and attorney Justin Prochnow, a shareholder in the firm Greenberg Traurig.

Magic pills cast pall

The weight management market has been besmirched over the years by a number of products billing themselves a magic pills.  The disappointment of consumers who bought products that didn’t live up to their promises and the ire of regulators has combined to cast a pall over the category.

Yet the demand for these products endures in the marketplace.  And the need for them continues to grow, too. According to obesity statistics gathered by the Centers for Disease Control, in 1990 only one US State had an obesity rate (defined as the percentage of the population with a BMI of 30 or above) of more than 15%.  In 2018, no state had a rate of less than 20% and most were in the 25% to 30% range, with two states (Kentucky and West Virginia) topping 35%.

Health care costs savings opportunity

There are well characterized health care costs associated with obesity.  In a CDC study conducted in 2008, the added health care costs associated with obesity were estimated to be $147 billion.  Assuming the rise in healthcare costs moves in lockstep with the rise in obesity rates, that figure is likely to be more than $180 billion to $200 billion in 2020.

So dietary supplements have a massive opportunity.  They can make a cogent health care costs savings argument in connection with helping consumer manage their weight.  

Why is the proof so hard to come by?

But that’s assuming that the supplements are in fact successful in helping consumers battle the bulge.  Which of the many weight management products/ingredients on the market actually work, or at least work well enough vs a placebo to make them worth their cost?  Wednesday’s event will shed some light on that question.

And why is it so hard to prove that weight management products really work? Is it just a matter of too many poorly done studies that used too few subjects?  Or is it inherently difficult first to determine why so many people are fatter than before and what to do about it?  The upcoming event will delve into these questions as well.

In addition, the webinar will look into the regulatory questions in teh category.  Weight management products are a special area of concern for FDA, and the claims made about them have been the subject of high profile enforcement actions from FTC as well.

FREE event

So tune in Wednesday to this hour long, FREE event.  It’s sure to be worth its weight in time spent.  For more information or to register, visit the event homepage​.

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