Price of Being Thin (01:29)
60% of Westerners are overweight. As diets fail, fitness and pharmaceutical weight loss alternatives have emerged; Jacques Peretti will investigate their varying success rates and health hazards.
Weight Loss through Exercise (02:01)
Jacques attends a spinning class; dedicated participants train five hours per week and follow a diet plan. Most people join gyms believing a few sessions per week will achieve results—fueling fitness industry profits.
Challenging Exercise Conventions (02:27)
Professor Wilkin explains that humans have evolved to conserve energy; intense activity is balanced by rest. 75% of the calories we burn are used to keep our bodies functioning; exercise effects on weight loss are limited by metabolism.
Building a Fitness Empire (04:41)
Exercise has health benefits, but is inefficient for weight loss. Jacques attends a Richard Simmons class and learns how the aerobics pioneer combines movement and therapy to help overweight people overcome low self-esteem.
Exercise and Weight Loss Misconception (04:18)
Most people can't commit to intense training required for weight loss. Jacques interviews LA Fitness owner Fred Turrick about marketing to women; many members fail to achieve unrealistic results but he defends the industry's overall health benefits.
Food Company Sports Sponsorship (04:45)
Coke, McDonalds and Cadbury invested in the London Olympics. A U.S. obesity expert explains how PepsiCo promotes the misconception that exercise equates weight loss to avoid government regulation.
Food Company Fitness Commitments (04:53)
Jacques meets with a PepsiCo representative, who denies that sports sponsorship attempts to subvert legislation by equating exercise with weight loss. Hear Coke, McDonald's and Cadbury's statements about their involvement in the Olympics.
Weight Loss Pharmaceuticals (02:26)
As obesity became a public health epidemic, market demand for medical weight loss treatment increased and the industry began researching safe and effective drugs.
Pharmaceutical Weight Loss Cover Up (04:49)
Fenfluramine drugs were approved in the U.S. despite their known link to lung disease. Jacques meets with a U.S. doctor who was threatened after going public about the risks; victims won lawsuits but Wyeth has never admitted liability.
Wellbutrin Off-labeling Scandal (03:33)
Learn how GlaxoSmithKline illegally marketed the antidepressant as a weight loss drug to doctors—later paying out $3 billion in legal compensation.
Pharmaceutical Failure (05:24)
A U.K. medical school researches weight loss mechanisms to address obesity. Today, only Xenical (Orlistat) is available; a former patient describes negative side effects and a Roche representative admits obesity is impossible to reverse with a drug.
Biological Obesity Challenge (01:07)
Humans have evolved to store extra calories for winter; abundant food in the developed world makes weight loss goals difficult to maintain.
Gastric Surgery (03:29)
Medicine is turning to surgical solutions for obesity. A new endoscopic procedure targets slightly overweight people—a patient group previously unaccounted for.
Weight Loss Industry Projections (00:37)
As the obesity epidemic grows, so do potential profits in pharmaceutical treatments.
Credits: Men Who Made Us Thin: Episode 2 (00:33)
Credits: Men Who Made Us Thin: Episode 2
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