I really like the program. It works for me -- I know all I have to do is stay on the plan and I will reliably lose between one to three pounds weekly. I know this because I successfully lost 32 pounds with LAWL in 2005. At that point I was not finished losing but I moved to a location where there was no center and failed to continue the plan on my own -- lesson learned, this is a change for life! I am recommitted to this plan since September 2007. I find it easy to understand the program and given all of these things, I believe it's worth all the money I paid and all I went through to get the information...and I paid a lot $$$ ! I encourage you to read this thread: What is LA Weight Loss? A Program Explanation.
which explains the program well.
Regarding their products, I use the LA Lite bars but I don't care much for the other Lite products (soup, hot chocolate, shakes) -- though many people do like them, and I do not use any LAWL supplements. There are products that are similar in nutritional content to the bars and / or have less sugar and can be less expensive that can be used in place of the bars, which can be costly. There are a few threads with substitute product information. Here is one to begin with: Newbies To The Lawl Area - Please Read Before Posting!
Services at my center were lacking. Keep in mind all centers are different and I encourage you to approach your center with an open mind. I don't have anything against them trying to sell their product because they're in the business to make money. My counselors were not particularly good at counseling - I met with some average to good ones but was markedly impressed by how many of them are just awful. Also, it seemed like they went through a lot of counselors, lots of new faces arriving and familiar faces no longer there. Maybe they should be called associates, then I would not presume they would do counseling. At my center I was not measured reliably or regularly, I was not given the information sheet on "Take Off" until months in to the program. They didn't seem to read my chart or take much of an interest in helping me lose the weight, I felt like a number or like just another in the herd of people coming through their doors. It's a business; if you decide to purchase the program just remember you are their customer
...you have hired them to provide a service in addition to any products you choose to purchase. You should ask for and get what you want out of it.
Even will all that said, this program works for me better than anything I have ever tried, and I have tried a lot of programs! I really believe this is a lifestyle change and that I can do this plan for the rest of my life. I can't tell you what a relief that is! Also, I have read on the LAWL forum that many people have counselors who are helpful and thoughtful. Hopefully your closest center is more like these other centers.
If I had it to do over again and based only on my own experiences, I would not utilize my center for the long term. I would get the plan by using LA at Home or by signing up for a minimum amount or limited time program (I am not familiar with what these programs may be at this time and/or in your area) and continue on my own to save the money. In my experience the center does not add much value and they're not going to be there for the rest of my life anyway. Also, some centers close and leave their clients with nothing but bars that were prepaid. Certainly some people like the accountability of going to the center, which after the limited program if it's decided you value their input I am sure they'll be willing to sign you up for the additional weight loss, stabilization and maintenance weeks. I am sure many would say they have had great experiences at their center and they value their center, so just want to emphasize this is my opinion based on my experiences.
I heartily encourage you to try LAWL, I am so glad I did. Feel free to PM me if I can answer any questions.