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    Posted May 9, 2014 by

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    “Do-It-Yourself” Weight Loss Market Benefits From Recent Economic Downtrend

    The bad economy and tighter budgets have propelled growth in the “do-it-yourself” weight loss market, but not in the other areas of the industry such as diet soft drinks, artificial sweeteners, health clubs and commercial weight loss chains.

    According to MarketData Enterprises, a leading independent market research publisher, the estimated $70 billion U.S. weight loss market that is still reeling from the decline in the country’s economy, has been experiencing a flat to low growth in the recent years.

    One reason for the decline was that 80% of America’s more than 75 million dieters are trying to lose weight by themselves to save on their dollars. The dieters took advantage of the free and do-it-yourself diet plans which they can access from several sources such as diet books, diet websites, diet pills, and meal replacement programs.

    “American dieters were faced with a lousy economy, rising gas prices, and limited discretionary dollars for weight loss programs. Consequently, they are spending their weight loss dollars very carefully,” according to Research Director John LaRosa.

    However, MarketData forecasts a 3.3% annual gain in sales of meal replacements and over-the-counter diet pills for 2014 for the do-it-yourself diet category, or a combined market sales of $3.04 billion this year. The finding that 80% of dieters preferred a self-directed program was the highest ever, according to MarketData, and this was generally attributed to the recession.

    These findings were corroborated by another market research group, The NDP Group. According to NDP researchers, the percentage of Americans who are into dieting is at an all-time low at 19 percent, and this is creating serious problems for the $61 billion weight-loss industry.

    “The American attitude is shifting about diet,” said Harry Balzer, chief industry analyst of The NPD Group, noting that “the percentage of Americans who say they are on a diet has been declining for some time now.” He cited several reasons including the preference of Americans for healthier eating rather than dieting.

    Despite this decline in the weight loss market, the problem of obesity in America remains. According to the latest figures, over 72 million or one third of the U.S. population are considered clinically obese while one billion people all over the world are over their ideal weight.

    Food experts noted that while there is no “one-size-fits-all” solution to weight loss, individuals can consider the making a lifestyle change to achieve permanent weight loss. While various diet programs can help jumpstart the weight loss process, a lifestyle change will be for long term.
    A support group can also help weight watchers, be it family members, friends or a group who have the same goal which is to lose weight. This way you can be cheering each other in the process.

    There is no healthy short-cut to losing weight so aiming to lose a few pounds in a week would be better than losing it too fast. Losing weight too fast can affect your physical well-being, and can even lead to sickness. Instead, set short-term goals which you can stick to, and which can keep you sufficiently motivated to pursue your weight loss plan.

    With the shift to do-it-yourself diets, one of the best options for dieters is to embark on a healthy eating plan. According to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010, a healthy eating plan should emphasize fruits, vegetables, whole grains and low-fat dairy products; also include lean meats, poultry, fish, beans, eggs and nuts; is low in saturated fats and cholesterol; and should stay within the daily calorie needs.

    But healthy eating does not mean one has to give up his or her favorite comfort food. According to food experts, healthy eating is about balance. A person can still enjoy his favorite food may it be sweet, high in calorie or rich in fat, but he should regulate his intake of this food.

    For those who cannot stay away from sweets or those who crave for a sugar rich or fatty comfort food, experts said that the person may still eat them but only once in a while. In addition, eat a smaller amount of the food or if it is not possible, try a lower-calorie version. Then he should balance this with more physical activity to burn the extra calories.

    Recently, weight watchers discovered that soups can help them shed some pounds. In fact, the soup diet has become popular in America and many have attested to the fact that soups can be an effective meal replacement for dieter since soups not only filling it can also be healthy.

    Many weight loss programs have recommended having soup as the main meal. And for quicker results, one can replace two meals a day with vegetable soup.Soups are healthy meal replacements as it can have vegetables, legumes, and grains, thus supplying the necessary nutritional needs of our body such as protein, vitamins and minerals. Aside from adding nutrients in our diet, soups can be very tasty and delicious.

    Studies have shown that people who start off their meal with a vegetable soup consume 20% fewer calories during their meal. Since eating the soup takes some time, the person feels full sooner which curbs the appetite and lessen the consumption of solid food. The delicious taste and aroma of soups are an added bonus, making the meal an enjoyable experience.

    Vegetable-based soups, in particular, are highly recommended because they have high nutritional value for relatively fewer calories unlike bread and other snack foods. According to studies, a low-calorie vegetable-based soup also helps regulate the digestive tract such that the person is able to absorb the key nutrients needed for a healthy body.

    To address the needs of weight conscious consumers, Soupman, Inc. (OTCQB: SOUP - http://finance.yahoo.com/q?s=SOUP) launched in 2011 an innovative new line of “Skinny Soups”, which contained less than 150 calorie per eight ounce serving but still contained the rich flavors and healthy ingredients of the other variants. “Since our founding, The Original SoupMan has always offered delicious, nutritionally balanced meals,” said Arnold Casale, the Company’s CEO.

    The Original SoupMan’s Skinny Soups provide a healthy, nutritional meal in varieties including Butternut Squash, Corn Chowder, Chicken Vegetable, Garden Vegetable, Italian Wedding, Lentil, Minestrone and Tomato Basil.
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