Does it Work? - Lighter life?

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05-02-2006, 08:07 AM
I am new to this forum,but i like what i read already.
I have tried every diet under the sun,including diet pills......this is going to be my last resort,Lighter life,has anyone tried it?I know it is quite extreme,but i have been trying to lose weight for over 10 years now.
i'd just like to know if anyone has anything positive to say about it.

05-02-2006, 10:28 AM
I have never heard anything about Lighter Life? I will keep watching I can learn. Welcome!!

05-02-2006, 10:44 AM
What is the Lighter Life plan?

05-02-2006, 05:57 PM
Thanks for replying.
Well the plan is that you don't touch any food for 100 days,and only have the lighter life shakes ,soups and bars,and you also go to group therapy,there are only a maximum of 12 people in a group,and you lose 3 stone in 3 months,but you also have to have at least 3 stone to lose in the first place,and you need your doctor to check you out first(blood pressure etc)and sign a form.......anyway...i think i will do it....i'll keep you all posted.

05-02-2006, 09:55 PM
malima-please beware of any diet that doesn't allow you to eat food! I'm sure you will lose weight on it-you'd have to. If you are not retraining your body and mind to adapt to a lifestyle you can live with, you will more than likely gain it back when you go back to "normal" eating and damage your metabolism in the process. Have you tried Atkin's? Lots of people who can;t lose weight any other way lose dramatically on the Atkins plan. It isn't without it's faults, I tried it and had some minor physical problems....decided to switch to calorie counting-but lots of people stick with it without a hitch. Even despite my difficulty, I lost 20 lbs in a month. Check out the low-carb lifestyle threads. Just my opinion, but I think those liquid diets are dangerous and in the long run ineffective anyway.

05-02-2006, 10:41 PM
I thank Atkins every day. It is the only sensible way that I have been able to lose weight and feel that I have learned how to eat for a lifetime. I would not be able to stand any plan that didn't allow me real food. I have not heard of the plan that you have chosen . Please be careful and check it out with your doctor. Good Luck and Wishing you the best.

05-03-2006, 04:00 AM
Thanks rebeleagle and lilybelle(u look fantastic by the way),
I know,my family have been telling me not to go to this lighter life,but it is really my last resort,i am going to stick to it for 3 months max,i will post photos,then since no-one else knows about this plan,i will be the guinea pig.
My current weight etc is.......5feet 5",12 stone 4...i will try to post photos later ok.i will try to go to a group this week,but if i miss it,it will be next week before i start......wish me luck.

05-04-2006, 11:41 PM
Sounds a lot like Optifast - how many calories a day is this?

I've written often in the past about my Optifast experience - here's the most current post (which includes links): Been there - done that (

Just FYI :)

Okay...I just checked their website - this is a 500 calorie a day diet. That is VERY low, almost dangerously low!! Optifast was 800 calories when I was on it (probably still is). I just hope the program includes getting blood work and a physical done on a WEEKLY basis - with EKGs every 2-3 weeks (that's what was required on my program) along with taking Actigall or some other prescription drug to keep your gall bladder from acting up (often requiring surgery).

I can't believe it - 500 calories a day!! That is just too low IMO!

05-05-2006, 03:41 AM
Hi Mrs Jim,
It is low,but i will only be on it for 3 months,it is really my last resort,i've been dieting for 10 years,all the nutrients are all there,and there is a monthly check up i think.
i'llkeep you posted.

Misti in Seattle
05-07-2006, 10:42 AM

Well you sound pretty determined to go on this plan but I will chime in here anyway in agreement with MrsJim... a 500 calorie diet is WAY too low and is not good for your health.

I also looked at their website and also looked up all the stuff selling on eBay. The sellers emphasize also that you have to drink at least 4 liters of water a day and no other drinks except leaf tea and coffee (no milk). They also say it should be supervised by your doctor (not just being checked out first and your signing a form). The report I read also suggests a medical checkup every four weeks. Is a doctor really going to go along with this plan??? I can't imagine it. There's not a chance on earth my doctor would approve of or supervise this!

Oh and it is the first phase that lasts 100 days called the Foundation. If you still need to lose, you go on it again for the Development phase and eventually a Maintenance phase where you gradually start to actually eat food.

According to the report, side effects are tiredness, dizziness, weakness, insomnia, nausea, constipation, diarrhoea, dry skin, hair loss, menstrual changes and intolerance to the cold; also increased saggy skin (since you lose so fast it doesn't "unstretch") and even gout, gallstones and cardiac disturbances.

The report also calls it "incredibly expensive" at 66 pounds per week. Now being an American :) I don't know what that is equivalent to in $$$ -- but assuming it is "incredibly expensive" please consider whether you are going to be able to keep it up for the time needed.

You are also putting yourself into a situation where you can't celebrate special occasions, go out to eat with friends and family, etc... basically eliminating all the social aspects of food from your life. And yes there ARE social aspects and it IS possible to participate in them without "blowing" your sensible eating plan. Just something to consider.

You say this is your "last chance" but trust me, it isn't. A medically supervised well balanced food plan, drinking lots of water, and lots of exercise will do it! BTW the reviews for Lighter Life all recommend medical supervision, at least 4 liters of water, and exercise.

Anyone who sticks with LL will undoubtedly lose weight... you are effectively starving yourself. However, it will certainly not (in my opinion) give you good health.

Just my two cents worth. :) But as I said you seem determined to give this a try so I will say welcome to the forum and I know you will find lots of support and encouragement here!! :wel3fc: I'm not here to "debate" you so this will be my only post on this one... but I do look forward to getting to know you around the forum!! Best wishes!

05-07-2006, 03:11 PM
to be quite honest, I don't like diets that emphasize weight loss over health. Weight always seems to be the issue with a lot of people but I don't understand why'd you live on protein shakes and prepared foods in boxes or cans... If you don;t mind then you should go along with it, but I wouldn't!

05-07-2006, 06:54 PM
I am on Cambridge diet which is similar to Lighter Life.

05-07-2006, 07:42 PM
Hi Mrs Jim,
It is low,but i will only be on it for 3 months,it is really my last resort,i've been dieting for 10 years,all the nutrients are all there,and there is a monthly check up i think.
i'llkeep you posted.

While I do know how it feels to think of something as a 'last resort' - remember, I've BEEN THERE MYSELF - please take the time to read the links on my previous posts.

I'm sorry to say, that a 'monthly check-up' is totally insufficient for a VLCD (Very Low Calorie Diet). I doubt if you'll ever see a VLCD offered in the US that isn't affiliated with a hospital or medical center - of course this "Lighter Life" isn't offered in the US as far as I can tell - thank God for that. When I was on Optifast, during the fast portion and reintroduction of food portion, I was required to have a medical checkup WEEKLY, always with blood work and often EKGs.

I suggest that, before taking the plunge (from what I've read, this "Lighter Life" program is quite expensive!) you do some research on your's an article from the US Dept of Health & Human Services/Weight Control Information network on Very Low-Calorie Diets ( some quotes:

Many patients on a VLCD for 4 to 16 weeks report minor side effects such as fatigue, constipation, nausea, and diarrhea, but these conditions usually improve within a few weeks and rarely prevent patients from completing the program. The most common serious side effect is gallstone formation. Gallstones, which often develop anyway in people who are obese, especially women, are even more common during rapid weight loss. Research indicates that rapid weight loss may increase cholesterol levels in the gallbladder and decrease its ability to contract and expel bile. The drug ursodiol can prevent gallstone formation during rapid weight loss, but is not often used for this purpose.

Studies show that the long-term results of VLCDs vary widely, but weight regain is common. Combining a VLCD with behavior therapy and physical activity may help increase weight loss and slow weight regain. In the long term, however, VLCDs are no more effective than more modest dietary restrictions.

WOW is that last bit ever true - about weight regain being common - out of the 1000+ participants in the Stanford/Optifast Weight Loss Maintenance study I participated in, only three to five percent were able to maintain most or all of the weight lost during the 3 month fast - only after 18 months - the vast majority of participants had gained most or ALL of the lost weight back. I was one of the very few who not only kept the weight off, but continued to lose and maintain those losses - VERY much the exception to the rule.

Just an FYI - I don't want ANYONE here harming their health - you should consider this VERY carefully.

05-07-2006, 07:47 PM
The report also calls it "incredibly expensive" at 66 pounds per week. Now being an American :) I don't know what that is equivalent to in $$$ -- but assuming it is "incredibly expensive" please consider whether you are going to be able to keep it up for the time needed.

Today's conversion rate for pound sterling (GBP): 1 pound = $1.86 USD.

Which means that the program cost is $122.82 per week in US Dollars...meaning just that three months' fast alone is going to cost around $1500 - without medical

05-07-2006, 09:03 PM
Whilst I agree that there are health risks, any weight loss brings the risk of gallstones, as does being overweight in itself. Personally, I have a very supportive doctor who I see weekly if not twice a week. As an average over the week i am actually intaking more calories now than before but at least I am ensuring that I receive all the nutrients that I need. (I didn't have an eating disorder, I just had a tendency to forget to eat). I know that they aren't the best way of going about this weight loss thing but the one I am on (Cambridge diet) at least reintroduces food and teaches you about food groups. I am taking this seriously as I never, ever want to be this fat again. For me it is a bit of a vicious cycle; I got gallstones due to my weight which are agonising, I need an operation which will be less complicated if I lose weight and obviously I want this operation as soon as possible but I could possibly get gallstones from this diet. Believe me this is not a cosmetic thing although I would love to look better, it is about my health above all.
I know that this might not be your chosen weight loss method but many thousands do choose this method and I for one would appreciate support in it rather than being told what to do like a naughty school girl.
We are all adults on here and are able to make our own decisions on what we feel to be the best route for ourselves. All lifestyle choices bring an element of risk.
Having said all that though, I really would look at all the options available before rushing in. Don't just look at the 'after' pictures, it will take a major lifestyle upheaval and be very restricting to your social life. Have you really tried and stuck 110% to all the other diets and exercise plans? I think something all overweight people have to realise is that once we slim and get down to 'target' regardless of which diet used we will always have to watch what we eat.

Misti in Seattle
05-07-2006, 10:24 PM
I know that this might not be your chosen weight loss method but many thousands do choose this method and I for one would appreciate support in it rather than being told what to do like a naughty school girl.

This is a forum for public discussion... I don't think it is treating someone "like a naughty school girl" to express honest concerns. Speaking personally, I do try to be an encourager here, and I think most others do as well; however, I personally will not give support in someone's doing something which I feel is dangerous to their health. As I said in my first post, I don't intend to "debate" someone -- but at the same time people posting here for input can't expect automatic "yes votes" for what they are doing when it is obviously unhealthy.

MrsJim, thanks for the great links! I did note on one of them that a VLCD is considered around 800 calories.

05-08-2006, 01:31 PM
Like many here, I keep an eye on calories and exercise. It's slow going, but for the first time in my life it's working. If I can do it, anyone can.

I have a good friend who was doing Lighter Life. She had great success with it, for a time, then found that the low calorie regime was too hard to take, she got ill, and had to return to food. 18 months on I have lost twice as much as she did, whilst taking in twice as many calories :dizzy:

I think if you are realistic about what you are getting in to, then a very low calorie plan can work fine. But you will need to return to food at some point, and unless you are very disciplined, may find it hard to maintain your loss without the rigidity of the program.

I'd find out just how much you are committed to up front, and whether you can get a refund if you drop out.

Have you spoken to your gp about your weight? Are you obese? In the UK now your gp is obligated to help you if you fall into the obese category.

I would urge you to do this before you give any serious pounds to anyone who stands to make a lot of money out of you!