Slimgenics Review

Slimgenics is essentially Slim4Life 2.0. The website’s different, the specific weight loss programs differ slightly, but the underlying modus operandi is the same: Slimgenics' costs are exorbitant. It’s a wildly overpriced weight loss program that hustles customers to pay far too much money for nutritional advice provided by counselors, staffers without dietary and nutrition skills or licensure making less than $11 an hour [1], a diet plan is set , and then drip, drip, drip, the big reveal: you have to pay hundreds, even thousands, of dollars for program-required dietary supplements, meal replacement foods and counseling.

Done online (called the At-Home) and in actual centers, where Slim4Life had locations in Texas, Kansas and Florida, Slimgenics is located in Colorado, Ohio, and Minnesota. Interestingly, they both also share Missouri locations. I cannot swear to this, but the programs are so similar and though Slim4Life claims to have been decades ago, Slimgenics premiered in 2003 and some refer to it as “formerly Slim4Life.” I’ve seen this before, where a weight loss business sells off its program almost like a franchise—essentially the same program but with enough differences to make each its own. This review then will resemble my recent one on Slim4Life, with a few more concerning details.

Slimgenics is headquartered in Arvada, Colorado. They have both an A-plus rating and accreditation from the Better Business Bureau. But here’s the kicker. Since they got their BBB profile in 2003, there is only one review and no open customer complaints (they answered all 11 complaints, mostly with “sorry, you signed our contract saying nothing is returnable or refundable.”). And I suspect it’s because of this little note on their BBB profile sidebar:

The company has requested that any complaint a consumer may have should be addressed to the specific location to which the consumer patronizes and not to this location. This location is the administrative offices. [2]

So they don’t stand behind their locations. Thus covering their corporate behinds. And about that accreditation: turns out businesses pay for that little sticker. Now, they also have to qualify by meeting, committing to, and maintaining good business practices, but when you outsource all your customer gripes to your individual locations, that’s pretty easy to do.

Slimgenics Claims

Slimgenics says its program is “more than weight loss—it’s a way of life.” Slimgenics purports that based on “proven scientific principles” its program and supplements will “help improve body toxicity, inflammation, digestive health and weight-related hormonal imbalances—all while eating real food.” [3]

If the word “healthy” had been added between the word “real” and the word “food” plus regular exercise, well, your body would do the rest of the work; it’s a pretty amazing machine. That said, we’ll explore the claims and see what, if anything, sets Slimgenics apart from the pack.

Slimgenics admits that any results, which may vary, can only be achieved on its program by following a “reduced-calorie high-protein” diet. It promises you’ll lose weight fast—2 to 5 pounds the first week and then 1 to 3 pounds a week—with “no exercise required.” [3]

Red flag.

Slimgenics weight loss programs are, they claim, a “proven, effective nutrition-based approach to weight loss” with individual food plans, support and guidance. Honestly, that part sounds great, but without exercise I am dubious.

But worse yet is what Slimgenics doesn’t mention at top: you must buy tons of supplements and other Slimgenics products—snacks and shakes, for example—and they are not cheap. Plus, the effectiveness of any one of their myriad supplements is in question. Largely not bad for you, but certainly not necessary to lose weight. Slimgenics claims that thermogenesis is the key to your quick weight loss and that its metabolism boosters are just the trick, again without moving your body. Slimgenics expects customers to “enjoy delicious Thermo-Snacks® daily.”

The diet is based on a number of flawed premises, including that

  • you don’t need to exercise
  • you shouldn’t drink too much water—which they claim flushes electrolytes from the body
  • and Slimgenics does not shy away from so-called diet foods that the new conventional wisdom says are bad for you, like artificial sweeteners found in diet soda.

Slimgenics Ingredients/Plan

Slimgenics can be done in-person at one of its centers or online. Slimgenics’ price for its At-Home Starter Kit is $450 and includes seven detox, digestive health, and weight loss supplements, drink powder, and some snacks. Which seems to me an outrageous amount for vitamin, mineral, probiotic and digestive enzyme supplements that contain similar ingredients—probiotics, fish oils, minerals, vitamins, green tea extract, and other usual ingredients that show up in dietary supplements—at your local Wal-Mart for far less. [4] [5]

Taking a quick look, Slimgenics Slim Repair detox shakes, which run $130, are said to “break through stubborn plateaus,” must be used at the beginning of the program and every six or so weeks until you reach your weight loss goal and then, you still need to drink them every eight weeks while you’re maintaining your new weight. This is a stunning requirement and expensive to boot. Even a 3-day supply of this mix is a whopping $55.

There’s the Omega Slim—Omega-3, -6 and -9 fish oil capsules which they identify as proprietary—that costs $85 for a one-month supply. You need to take nine—yes, nine—capsules a day.

Or the Pura Slim Metabolizer, for $145, made from cayenne, bitter orange, nutmeg, niacin and magnesium. You take up to six capsules a day. I mean, come on. [6]

Proponents of Slimgenics say the support received from personal counseling at one of its centers in 34 major metropolitan areas across Colorado, Minnesota, and Ohio, is helpful. [7] The cost range for going to a center, having a diet plan made, and then being told what supplements you must take, can range from several hundred to several thousand dollars.

The Science (or Lack Thereof) Behind Slimgenics

Any diet that mandates people purchase their supplements should be immediately suspect, health care providers say. Be leery of any plan that recommends a shelf full of supplements, says WebMD.com. And the American Dietetic Association (ADA) recommends that people get nutrients from food and not from pills. [8]

Most of Slimgenics snacks get their protein from soy, and while it’s certainly a fantastic source of plant protein (as any vegetarian will tell you) there is some science out there that too much soy can present some hazards—most recommendations are no more than 50-60 grams of soy protein per day. And most soy powders contain a lot fewer of the healthy isoflavones than soybeans themselves. Too much soy can increase risk of bleeding and lower blood sugar, can raise blood pressure, and mess with hormone-sensitive conditions and certain medications. The Mayo Clinic specifically says “Avoid soy at levels higher than normally consumed in food if the person is pregnant or lactating, has cancer or is at risk for cancer, or is taking medications.” [9] [10]

Word on the Street About Slimgenics

There are no shortage of glowing Slimgenics reviews on its website. Success story after success story. [11]

But while I don’t dispute these accounts, I find it to be more honest and candid to seek out reviews from other sources. I will add that their Facebook page has some 130,000 followers, which is pretty huge. There are no reviews posted on the page per se and the timeline posts seem to only have a handful of “Likes”—this despite the large following. Hmm. [12]

“Sarah” was a Slimgenics customer, and she left a comment on a fairly complimentary review site. But she was hardly impressed. Here’s her take:

Slimgenics sells over priced supplements and processed food. It is expensive (several thousand dollars). Many of these supplements cause gas and bloating, and sometimes diarrhea, but sometimes you can get used to it. The people who work there assured me this is normal but it is not pleasant.

The staff are repetitive but friendly. They say things that cannot be supported by current research, but they are trying to help so it’s not their fault. They are not medical doctors and some of their dietary advice is old-fashioned, but since they are mostly genuinely kind, it’s not so bad.

The staff are pushy about selling products and about insisting how much you lose. Sometimes it seems that they are forcing you to commit to a very low weight. They will write all over your contract and the amount they expect you to lose will be adjusted up and up and up. Beware of this tactic.

You can go to other cheaper services to be weighed and be accountable for weight loss. This approach is expensive. [13]

The Clean Plate Club says Slimgenics “costs an arm and a leg” and recommends dieters “save your monies.” [14]

The thing is, Slimgenics says none of this on its website. It claims the $5/week fee is it. In fact, Slimgenics calls itself one of the most affordable weight-loss programs available today. But if you really look at what they’re saying,

Program Service Fees are $5/week with full program enrollment. Service fees include a personalized nutritional profile, body fat analysis, four-phase weight loss/weight management program and materials, nutritional curriculum and one-on-one support up to six visits per week. Your program service fees are determined by the amount of weight you need to lose. All nutritional supplements are sold separately. [15] (emphasis added)

Pretty classic bait-and-switch.

A person who worked for a Minnesota Slimgenics location wrote a review that corroborates what many users have complained about. “They claim to be all about wellness, but it’s all about sales. There is no continuity between centers and you could know everything about the program and help people a lot but unless you have sales numbers, they couldn’t care less.” [16]

To be fair, there are some reviews on GlassDoor that praise Slimgenics as not only the best weight loss program around, but also the best place to work. That said, there are a number of employees (at least two former) who claim that management write the great reviews. I find it hard to believe that staff earning on average between $10 and $12 an hour would be raving. But that’s just me. I guess I’m a skeptic.

And then I saw this review: “Managers wanting you to push clients through doors fast, even if they need to vent.” [17]

The Bottom Line: Is Slimgenics Worth a Try?

Definitely Not. Unconvinced by any of their claims, I believe this program is a racket. And if even Slimgenics employees call the weight loss program a bait-and-switch… Well, there you have it. For the thousands of dollar you’d spend doing Slimgenics, you could simply buy fresh healthy foods and join a high-end gym.

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*Individual results will vary.