Overweight and obesity refers to excess body fat, and it is related with increased weight-for-height. Obesity is a medical term used when the excessive accumulation of fat which occurs in the body. It may have numerous adverse effects on health, which increases the chances of occurrence of diseases and ultimately reduces the life expectancy of an individual. Weight-loss providers include any companies offering goods or services specifically targeted as a weight-loss solution. As well as traditional weight loss advice and counseling services, companies offer a variety of foods and beverages targeted at those wishing to lose weight. The focus of the consumer is moving away from calorie counting and shifting to a sustainable, healthier lifestyle. Physicians and health insurance providers are not shy about pitching weight loss as preventative health care. Medical weight loss plans as a niche weight loss business have been outperforming and likely will into the future.
The rising pace of obesity and chronic diseases is creating the need for weight loss programs and obesity management. The increase in heath concern, high disposable income, and technological advancements are driving the growth of this market. The availability of low-cost substitutes and expensive customization is limiting the growth of this market. The increasing rate of obesity among children provides significant opportunities for growth for players in weight loss and services market. Other prominent market drivers include consumer’s increased weight and rising disposable income among people in the developing countries. However, a large number of tall and false claims misleads the general public about the effectiveness of particular services. Such unfounded loss claims and misleading endorsements restrain the market growth for weight loss services market globally.
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According to the World Health Organization (WHO) estimates, more than 1.4 billion adults 20 years or older are overweight and obese. Obesity not only leads to loss of confidence among obese people, but is also a great concern from the health standpoint. Overweight eventually leads a person to several diseases such as cardiovascular (CVD), type 2 diabetes, strokes and even chances of cancer. Obesity and weight gain have become one of the biggest concerns in the developed countries such as the U.S. owing to increasing adoption of sedentary lifestyle among the youth.
Regionally, North America and Europe have been the largest play areas for the players in this market. The market for weight loss services is getting a boost in the U.S. due to coverage provision of screening and counseling for obesity under the Affordable Care Act (Obama Care). According to the Health & Social Care Information Centre, obesity levels in England have illustrated a sharp increase during the period 1993 to 2011. The obesity and overweight population continue to grow in the OECD countries as well. According to a report on ‘Obesity and Economics of Prevention: Fit or Fat’ from OECD presents the scale of the obesity epidemic and recommends that nations make policies to prevent the consequences of obesity on the health and economy of the nation. Therefore, the market for weight loss services is expected to grow continuously shortly. However, as the economies in Asia-Pacific are growing at a rapid pace, the changing lifestyle of people in this region is resulting in more people becoming obese. This presents the lucrative opportunity for market players in this highly untapped regional market.
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Some of the major market players of weight loss services market include Northcastle Partners, NutriSystem, Inc., Weight Watchers International, Inc., Jenny Craig, Inc., Medifast, Inc., BistroMD, Inc., and Rosemary Conley Diet & Fitness Clubs. The market is highly competitive in the developed nations with the simultaneous presence of several multinational and local players. NutriSystem, Inc. is one of the major player engaged in providing meal replacement and weight loss supplements.