Updated: 01/13/2018

Lighten Up Review - 6 Things You Need to Know


Over 50 percent of diet programs just don’t work, so what about Lighten Up? Is it part of the 50 percent that doesn’t work? To find out, our research team took an in-depth look at the Lighten Up program and read comments and reviews from actual participants to find out if this product is a healthful and effective way to lose weight.

Lighten Up Readers: Click here to find out why we're giving away samples of our product, Burn HD.

What You Need to Know

Lighten Up is a weight loss system that teaches participants to have a healthy relationship with food. Rather than tackling stress eating, it tackles stress itself, and it aims to promote an understanding of why you’re eating what you’re eating to help make better decisions about your diet.
Lighten Up has been around since 2004, so it does have some longevity as a diet program. It comes with a recommended caloric intake, ideas for increased activity, and some tips for dropping extra weight. We like that it is a very affordable program with very little or no cost at all and that there are some positive results in reviews online, but read on…

Lack of Results–“Only for Dieters that Are All In”

The first disappointment with Lighten Up came as we started to realize that weight loss was slow and minimal. “The program saw its first boost in participation in Iowa where over 12,000 users participated for several months,” said our research editor. “Unfortunately, without any supplements or additional support, dieters lost an average of just less than 4 pounds.”
“I was doing all I could to follow the program, but the lack of a support network made weight loss slow and disappointing,” said one user.
“This is only for dieters that are all in and have time to exercise every single day. I’d rather take a supplement that allows me to lose weight by eating healthy and exercising a few days a week,” said another.

Health Concerns–Dangerously Low Calorie Counts

Those that did follow the system to the letter and lost weight often did so at the expense of their overall health. “I lost 8 pounds over 2 months, but I was eating 500 calories per day and my immune system tanked,” said one dieter. Lighten Up promotes healthy eating, but it is often taken to an extreme with dieters eating well under 1000 calories per day.
“I had constant stomach pain and depression issues after being on a low calorie diet for 2 months,” said another. Many customers agree that the program encouraged unsafe diet practices, like this customer who participated in Lighten Up Maine: “Healthy living is one thing, but eating a 500-700 calorie diet is unsafe and unsustainable.”
Our research has shown that whenever a diet program has a difficult or troublesome aspect (difficult workouts, high cost, health concerns, etc.), it can be difficult to follow through and meet weight loss goals. If Lighten Up really does have some long-term health concerns, it could make it difficult for those looking for a healthy way to lose weight.
If you are dead set on trying a diet program like Lighten Up, we recommend that you continue to eat a normal diet, but start substituting healthier options. Rather than starving your body on a 500 calorie diet, continue with a 1500 calorie diet but substitute fresh fruit for dessert or vegetables for high carb starches.

The Science–Good or Bad?

We were able to find plenty of scientific support for a low calorie diet and increased exercise contributing to weight loss, but we also found significant research against dangerously low calorie diets. Most scientific studies recommend a combination of lower caloric intake and increased aerobic activity to help dieters lose weight, but when it’s taken to an extreme, it can be unhealthy and dangerous. Clinical studies have proven that it is unsafe and potentially dangerous to maintain a diet below 1200 calories for women and 1500 calories for men. The low calorie numbers recommended by Lighten Up are often below these thresholds, which studies have shown can lead to long-term internal organ problems, weight management struggles, and more.

What Users Are Saying

"”I am really enjoying this sunlight simulator. Its simple to use and works with lamps I already own.”"

"”This is a good product if you are using incandescent lightbulbs. The reason for this is that it’s not technically a dimmer, but actually a signal chopper.”"

"”Didn’t work after a month.”"

The Bottom Line–Does Lighten Up Work?

Now the moment we’ve all been waiting for: our decision on Lighten Up. There was a lot to like about Lighten Up. The easy to follow instructions, the affordability of the product, and the idea to lose weight by simply making better choices were all encouraging. We do have several reservations about this product, primarily the lack of research proving that Lighten Up is a safe way to lose weight. Weight loss is key for us, but overall health is more important, so a product that sacrifices overall health for a few pounds raises red flags. We’re also concerned about the lack of results that some people have seen and the lack of a support network with Lighten Up.

If you’d like to lose weight without sacrificing long-term health, we recommend supplementing your active lifestyle with a weight loss product that is proven to increase the results of your healthy choices by boosting your metabolism and helping you burn fat.

Among the best products we’ve seen this year is one called Dietspotlight Burn. It contains four ingredients that have scientific research backing up the product’s claims. The proprietary formula has been compared to a placebo in double-blind studies, and it has been proven to be a safe way to boost your metabolism and increase fat loss. We’ve found hundreds of reviews online boasting great results with this product, and there are no known health concerns when taking Dietspotlight Burn.

Right now, the makers of Dietspotlight Burn are making their product available as part of a special trial offer, which is a good sign that they’re confident you’ll see great results with their product.

Learn More About Burn HD »
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Lighten Up

What are the ingredients in Lighten Up?

The Lighten Up weight loss system encourages dieters to incorporate low calorie ingredients into their meals like celery stalks, lettuce, tomatoes, snap peas, and kale, as well as other fruits and vegetables.

What are the side effects of Lighten Up?

Common side effects of the Lighten Up weight loss system are fatigue, mood swings, depression, stomach aches, headaches, and dry mouth.

How do I know if Lighten Up is right for me?

Choosing the right product is the #1 question asked by DietSpotlight readers. We recommend trying any product before buying it and know that finding a product with a sample offer is near impossible - so we created our own product, Burn HD, with scientifically backed ingredients.

Click here to get your sample of our powerful fat burner today.

Does Lighten Up work?

In recent studies conducted on the system, Lighten Up consistently helps dieters to lose weight when they complete the program over a series of several weeks.

What is the price of Lighten Up?

The Lighten Up weight loss system can be purchased for $72.

Where can I buy Lighten Up?

Lighten Up can be purchased in the Amazon digital market and in selected local health stores.

How should I take Lighten Up?

Lighten Up is an advanced health care and weight loss system that helps dieters to create meals that are low in calories, which aids the weight loss process.

How do I contact Lighten Up customer service?

Lighten Up customer service and support can be reached through the company’s Facebook page or professional website.

Can I return Lighten Up?

Depending upon the store that Lighten Up was purchased from, the weight loss system may or may not be returnable. See the return policy of the store for more details.

What are the most common complaints about Lighten Up?

Common complaints about the Lighten Up weight loss system include the negative side effects that can occur when an individuals daily caloric intake drops below 1000 calories. These negative effects include cold and flu like symptoms and a general sense of illness.


Previous Lighten Up Review (Updated March 9, 2010):

What You Should Know

Lighten Up!: The Authentic Way to Lose Your Weight and Your Worries is a book written by well known stress coach, Loretta LaRoche. Her book is a lighthearted, fun, approach to weight loss, where she provides her eight secrets to shedding the pounds.

List of Ingredients

Not applicable.

Product Features

According to LaRoche, the majority of people have forgotten how to eat, and how to enjoy their food. Too many people feel that food is the sworn enemy, and still too many others feel food is their saving grace. The key is finding a balance in the way you feel about food, and to start regarding it as the positive life force it is meant to be. Avoid falling into the typical dieting frame of mind. Continue to eat food that you think tastes good. Remember what you love about the food you eat every day, and journal the experiences so you can keep track of them. She says you should follow the way the French eat, with three small meals every day, and a little bit of wine. She also says you should eat with your family as much as possible because research indicates this can help you live a longer, fuller, life. No meal plans or specific dietary guidelines are provided in the book because she wants people to focus on getting a better self esteem and more positive outlook. She says exercise should not be used as an excuse to overeat because it takes more activity than we realize to burn off those extra calories. Never exercise under stress or obligation, and only do something you enjoy.


  • This program promotes stress management.
  • This program advocates keeping a food diary.
  • This program promotes having a healthy relationship with your food.


  • No dietary guidelines are provided in this book.
  • Little guidance about how to make healthy eating choices.
  • Some people may not understand the way LaRoche approaches things.


Lighten Up!: The Authentic Way to Lose Your Weight and Your Worries does a good job on getting people to change the way they think and feel about food, but it does not really help with weight loss. There are no dietary guidelines, meal plans, recipes, or real exercise recommendations to help you. This may be a good thing to use alongside another weight loss program to help keep you with a motivated positive attitude, but beyond that we don't really recommend it. Instead, follow a reduced calorie, nutritionally balanced diet, with increased water intake. Find and take a proven weight loss supplement, either as a fat burner or appetite suppressant to help you increase your efforts for best results.

Summer Banks Dietspotlight Author
About the Author:

Summer Banks, Director of Content at Dietspotlight, has researched over 5000 weight-loss programs, pills, shakes and diet plans. Previously, she managed 15 supplement brands, worked with doctors specializing in weight loss and completed coursework in nutrition at Stanford University. full bio.

5 Lighten Up Reviews

  • Sandy

    My friend completed the diet plan and had great success so I decided to make the change too . She was more my motivation than the actual place and I will tell you the facts.mThe program works- the medically supervised aspect is a hoax and nonexistent. Its a chiropractor trying to drum up business for his chiropractic business by toting a fat loss diet. I never saw him for 3 weeks of my weekly visits until the seminar about chiropractic care was a mandatory part of the program. The young folks that work the front office, give you your “personalized” supplements, lighten up drops, are working off of a script card and are not doctors, or even healthcare workers. They tell you what to eat, how to eat it , when to take the supplements that never state what is actually in them. If you don’t buy into the chiropractic care, you basically go in for a weigh in once a week and out the door you go. There is no counseling, no extended healthy habits support, and after rejecting the chiropractic care, no followup from the office to see how your “diet” is going. 40 days later and you never hear from them again unless you sign up for chiropractic care. Its was almost hurtful and disappointing and I realized at that point the entire place was a con job.
    After completing 40 days, I lost 18 lbs and was so dedicated and proud of myself. I continued to lose weight on my own because I was dedicated to a healthy lifestyle change, my body started to look amazing, and the diet gave me a good foundation and jump start. You can buy the 40 days diet book, the 1234 diet, the HCG diet, the 17 day diet- they are all the same program. Cut your calories by eliminating starchy carbs, sugars, unhealthy trans fats. Eat lots of veggies and portioned protein and limited fruit for 40 days, reduce calorie intake to 500-700 calories for 40 days and you will have success on your own at a much lower cost. You can buy the supplements, buy the transformation drops (appetite supplement drops) on Amazon and change your eating habits to healthy ones. After 40 days you feel great about your accomplishment and are on the road to a fabulous body and healthy body.
    I have passed the Amazon information and book titles on to quite a few friends who are serious about weight loss and making a change in their eating habits and they have all had great success on their own- and saved $2000 !!

    • Kimberly A Dakake

      Hi..what are the name of the drops. There are so many different ones on Amazon?

  •   $2000,00 it was not worth it !
    Buddy (Verified User)

    I went on a diet called “The LightenUp Diet” at the cost of $2000,00 for 40 days. I was told it was Dr supervised, It was a chropractor looking for an innovated way to increase business. I saw him once, when I said I just wanted to do the dieting aspect of the diet, he was done with me. I was made to feel very uncomfortable everytime I went to his office.. I would go to my own doctor to monitor my progress and also take my blood to make sure I wasnt do damage with a 500 calorie diet. I have no problem with the diet, but the problem was with the lack of professional monitoring, the kids that put you on a scale were not even nutritionalist, they could have been anyone. $2000,00 it was not worth it.

  • Rose

    This is the HCG Diet…… go online, research and save your $$$$

    • Your NaBuddyme

      I absolutely agree with Rose.