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Oprah’s TV Special Falls Short

March 19, 2024

Last night Oprah Winfrey hosted a TV special investigating the popular GLP-1 diet drugs. The stories by people who lost significant weight were good, as was the information about obesity being a disease and not just a lack of willpower. However, in our opinion, some very important topics were not even mentioned.

First, why does Oprah consider it a conflict of interest for her to be on these meds and be on the Weight Watcher’s Board? WW now has a clinical program and is fully invested in these medications, so Oprah also being on them should be a natural move. It’s NOT a conflict.

Secondly, representatives of both Eli Lilly and Novo Nordisk were on the program, but hardly said anything and were just part of the audience. Why weren’t they on a panel to discuss the shortages, the accessibility and problems with insurance coverage, and other issues dieters are having?  No mention either of the legal actions these drug companies are taking against med spas and compounding pharmacies. No hard hitting questions about why the drug companies are not releasing more vials and are sticking with the pens despite there being a major shortage of pens. No questions about why the drug companies are pursuing foreign markets and not concentrating on the United States, when there is such a shortage.

Thirdly, there was absolutely no mention of what’s going on with the compounding pharmacies and why it’s important to vet them and make sure people are not getting inferior meds, just to save money? (the compounded drugs cost a lot less than the brand name Semaglutide, therefore their attractiveness to many).

These are important issues, yet were not discussed. Oprah could have done a lot better? Maybe she’ll do a follow-up show with more “meat” to it. We hope so.

For More Information About The U.S. Weight Loss Market…

Marketdata LLC has just published a new analysis of the weight loss market: “The U.S. Weight Loss Market: 2024 Status Report & Forecast”, March 2024, 107 Pages.

Some findings:

  • Obesity medications.. This market for prescription drugs in the U.S. more than doubled in 2023, from an estimated $5.1 billion in 2022 to $11.9 billion in 2023 as demand continued to soar for drugs such as Novo Nordisk’s Saxenda, Wegovy and Ozempic, as well as the entry of new drugs such as Mounjaro and Zepbound into the market.
  • Medical weight loss programs and services were estimated to be worth $21.0 billion in 2023. This is the highest share of the market posted since 1989. Medical programs are provided by independent physicians (incl. bariatricians), clinics, hospitals, and medical weight loss franchises.

This new Marketdata report presents a wrap-up of 2023 performance for the U.S. weight loss market during the obesity drugs market explosion and a forecast for 2024. The value of the total market is estimated to have grown to a historic peak of $90 billion in 2023, boosted by soaring sales of the popular prescription GLP-1 weight loss drugs. This is a paradigm shift to medical programs, and a major challenge for competing commercial diet companies, which lost $1 billion in revenues since 2022.

GLP-1 drugs are a game changer in terms of the number of medications now on the market, plus others to come in the next several years. They have affected dieter behavior and how commercial diet companies operate. Nearly all non-medical segments of the market have felt the pain of declining sales, and 26,500 weight loss coaches have lost their jobs. However, more physicians are adding weight loss to their practices, bariatric surgeries are hitting new highs, and caseloads/revenues at medical weight loss franchises and at bariatricians are growing.

The report includes in-depth analyses of: 2020-2023 market/revenue performance, recent competitor and market developments, current dieter trends, diet company advertising spending, and a new analysis of the number and salaries of weight loss coaches in the industry.  Special emphasis and analysis on the obesity drugs market, risks, what could derail the market, and why there is a wild west environment emerging – problems with using cheaper compounded drugs that are not FDA-approved.

Individual Status Reports and the Effects of the obesity drugs boom on operations and revenues, for ALL major weight loss market segments… diet soft drinks, artificial sweeteners, health clubs industry, commercial weight loss chains, retail meal replacements and retail appetite suppressants, medical programs (physicians, hospitals/clinic programs, prescription diet drugs, bariatricians, weight loss surgeries), and low-calorie dinner entrees.

Includes profiles/updated outlooks for: WW, NutriSystem, Jenny Craig, Medifast, Herbalife, Glanbia (Slim-Fast), Noom, Simply Good Foods (Atkins), HMR Boston, Lindora, and Profile by Sanford. Marketdata analysis of company strategy, conference calls.

Order This Report

Go to marketdataenterprises.com, Choose Buy Reports tab on home page for online store, go to page 4 of store listings to find this study, add to basket and pay, checkout. Price: $895. Or, call us at: 813-971-8080 and charge it. Table of Contents available at the Studies page, choose Services tab on home page, then Diet Market – Our Specialty.

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