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Weight loss companies battle over advertising claims

British weight loss company Slimming World sues Weight Watchers in federal court

Giving a new meaning to the term “diet wars,” U.K. weight loss organization Slimming World sued Weight Watchers in an effort to validate its marketing claims.

Slimming World, which calls itself the U.K.’s top weight loss organization, crossed in pond in 2010, promising to be more advanced and more user-friendly than its American competitor.

Weight Watchers fired back with an April 11 letter, in which it accused Slimming World of misleading “a vulnerable population of overweight men and women anxious to believe in the next weight management silver bullet” and threatened to sue if the British company did not retract its advertising statements.

On Friday, Slimming World filed its own suit in a federal district court in Sherman, Texas, asking a judge to affirm these marketing claims and block any potential legal action by Weight Watchers. The company maintains that its weight loss approach helps members shed pounds more effectively by combining energy-dense foods, exercise and a group support system. 

The suit also aims to strike a blow for personal liberty, stating that “Slimming World USA believes that the American people should have the freedom to choose for themselves which weight loss program they prefer.”

To read more, visit The Wall Street Journal

Alanna Byrne

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