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Information for health professionals
Delivering an effective, evidence-based
approach to healthy weight management
NICE and SIGN obesity guidance:
How Slimming World meets the standard
Slimming World supports both the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence1,2 (NICE) and
Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network3 (SIGN) obesity guidance and the opportunity that they
offer health professionals to work with commercial weight management organisations.
Both sets of guidance recognise the importance of providing regular and ongoing support for behavioural change –
not only for losing weight but for maintaining weight. Slimming World pioneered referral from primary care to
commercial weight management services and is able to demonstrate how it meets the guidance criteria.
A multi-component programme
Slimming World combines a satisfying,
sustainable healthy eating plan, a
programme to help members gradually
increase their physical activity levels, and
facilitation of behaviour change through our
unique group support system.
Focus on life-long lifestyle change
and the prevention of future
weight gain
Slimming World’s focus is on supporting
people to adopt healthy habits around
eating and physical activity for the long
term. Our weekly groups ensure members
feel empowered and equipped with the
necessary skills to develop lasting selfdetermined behaviour change. Members
attend free of charge when they reach their
personally selected target weight to support
maintenance of weight loss.
Developed by a
multidisciplinary team
Over 45 years our programme has been
continually reviewed and developed in line
with latest thinking on nutrition, exercise
and the psychology of behaviour change.
We have an in-house team of registered
dietitians and nutritionists, while a specialist
advisor panel brings together experts in
a range of disciplines including physical
activity, psychology, child and adult health
and behaviour change.
Staff are trained and receive
regular professional development
A dedicated training team delivers
specialist training in facilitating behaviour
change for weight control via Slimming
World’s bespoke Academy. As well as an
initial foundation training package, regular
on-going training, personal development
and support is provided for all the
Consultants who run our groups, with a
strong focus on a deep understanding of
the emotional and psychological aspects
of being overweight. A robust management
structure helps ensure consistency among
our groups with a firm emphasis on quality
of service provision.
Last at least 3 months, offer at
least fortnightly sessions including
a ‘weigh-in’
Our groups are open 52 weeks of the year
and members attend for as long as they
wish. Groups include a confidential weigh-in
followed by a support session to facilitate
learning and behaviour change. Members
continue to be supported in between groups
by a series of ‘lifelines’ including personal
support from the Consultant and other
group members and free online support
from the member website.
Ensure achievable goals for weight
loss are agreed for different stages
At Slimming World, every achievement is
recognised and praised, not just weight
loss but new thinking and new decisions.
Our award system helps members stay
motivated throughout their journey, breaking
down overall goals into mini targets and
rewarding gradual changes in behaviour.
All members set their own target weight
and interim targets and there is never any
pressure to reach an ‘ideal’ weight.
Ensure specific dietary targets are
agreed, tailored to individual needs
Slimming World’s healthy eating plan
encourages members to eat plenty of
highly satiating, low energy dense foods
while controlling intake of high energy
dense foods. It empowers members to
make healthier food choices, satisfy their
appetites and lose weight – without the need
for calorie counting or obsessive weighing
or measuring. No foods are banned, but
energy dense, high fat and sugary foods are
limited to support weight loss. Members are
supported in tailoring the plan to individual
tastes, requirements and to achieve