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Slim Fast & Weight Watchers Hit Hard By Low-Carb Diets

Further confirmation that we are in the midst of a cultural transformation with respect to the appreciation that lowering insulin levels is the key to losing weight, not lowering the fat intake. Sales of Slim-Fast's traditional meal-replacement shakes and powders slipped 27 percent last year, to $290 million. Weight Watchers has also been struggling. After strong growth for three years, its membership fell over 3 percent in the fourth quarter of 2003, not counting members gained through franchise acquisitions. Product sales were down 8 percent, and the company's stock is also in the doldrums, dropping about 18 percent in the past six months. The writing is on the wall folks.

There is still plenty of distortion to the truth, however, and much further improvement that needs to be made. Most people believe that low carb is the way to lose weight, when the reality is that fully one-third of them need a high-carb diet to lose, the only difference, of course, is that those carbs need to exclude grain carbohydrates.

Washington Post April 4, 2004; Page F01

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