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Obesity epidemic among men in UK is fuelled by fat-shaming and banter

Published: 16th October, 2019

While more than half of the male population of Britain are on a diet (55 per cent) more than a third (32 per cent) try to keep it a secret, according to a new survey*. There’s now a call for the shame surrounding male dieting to end.

The research, commissioned by The 1:1 Diet by Cambridge Weight Plan, claims that 33 per cent of British men believe there is a stigma attached to men being on a diet.

The survey of more than a thousand males revealed the top motivators for men to diet are:

  1. To improve their general health (35 per cent)
  2. To improve self-esteem and body confidence (30 per cent)
  3. To fit into their clothes better (20 per cent)
  4. To improve their wellbeing and quality of life (15 per cent)

Mark Gilbert, Nutritionist at The 1:1 Diet by Cambridge Weight Plan, said: “With 12 per cent of men being on a constant diet and 17 per cent saying they do not want to talk about it, it is clear that a shift in attitudes is required if the nation is to truly tackle male obesity.

“We all feel the need to lose weight at times, be that a few pounds or a few stone. Being able to do so openly and with the support of others is key to success. With so many British men classed as obese, it is my firm belief that diet should not be considered a dirty word.”

In the same study, 46 per cent of respondents said having the support of experts, family and friends enabled them to be much more successful in achieving their weight loss goals. Partners lead the way in terms of influence at 25 per cent, with medical professionals and weight-loss experts following closely behind at 15 per cent.

Conversely, the four pitfalls many men fall foul of are beer, pizza, fish and chips and cake.

Celebrity dieters don’t influence British men with only four per cent saying their endorsement resonated, whereas 40 per cent of respondents confirmed that the simplicity of a diet was the most important factor to them.

* According to research carried out through OnePoll in August 2019 of 2,000 UK adults.

Notes to editors

  • The 1:1 Diet by Cambridge Weight Plan’s roots can be traced back to the 1960s, when biochemist Dr Alan Howard started to research the perfect diet. This resulted in the launch of the Cambridge Diet in 1984.
  • In 2009 the Cambridge Diet was rebranded to Cambridge Weight Plan. The business started its Employee Ownership journey in 2010.
    Today, it is a passionate and profitable group of people who provide support, flexible weight loss plans, products and business opportunities that help other people achieve their goals. Whatever those goals may be.
  • Cambridge Weight Plan undertook a major rebrand in 2018, becoming The 1:1 Diet by Cambridge Weight Plan, and invested in a multi-million pound integrated campaign which sat across cinema, TV, social, digital and print.
  • In the UK, the company sells and markets The 1:1 Diet by Cambridge Weight Plan brand through independent Cambridge Weight Plan consultants. In June 2019 there were 6000 Consultants across the country offering slimmers one-to-one support to help guide them through their weight loss and into weight maintenance.
  • The 1:1 Diet by Cambridge Weight Plan’s meal replacement programme (MRP) uses formula food soups, shakes, bars and other foods to replace conventional foods, thus giving a lower dietary energy intake than on a conventional reducing diet. Cambridge Weight Plan MRPs are nutritionally balanced , providing all protein, essential fat, vitamins and minerals needed.
  • The 1:1 Diet by Cambridge Weight Plan has received a number of accolades for its commitment to employees, attaining new generation six Investors in People (IIP) Silver Award, becoming a Real Living Wage responsible employer and receiving a RoSPA Gold Award for health and safety management to name a few.
  • Worldwide, The 1:1 Diet by Cambridge Weight Plan is sold through an extensive distributor network and its products are exported to more than 30 countries.