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At first, women were the main participants, but by 2007, men made up 30 percent to 40 percent of spa customers, according to a report.
These weight-loss retreats market their services in a variety of ways.
For a more relaxed approach, there's Green Mountain, a "non-diet" weight-loss program in Vermont exclusively for women. While the theme and day-to-day schedule varies at each retreat, most programs are structured around exercise, healthy meals, and lifestyle education.(Other measures of health, such as their cholesterol levels and blood pressure, also tend to improve measurably.) Health.com: Skinny up your weekend As for the permanence of the weight loss, a study conducted by researchers from the University of South Carolina found that one year after their stay, just 22 percent of Hilton Head Health guests weighed 10 percent less than they did when they entered the retreat.Similarly, in a 2006 study of people who attended a weight-loss camp in Europe for more than five months, just over one-quarter maintained a 10 percent weight loss after four years.(Health.com) -- Five years ago, Juli Ackerman never thought she'd be able to buy an off-the-rack wedding dress.At 5 feet 10 inches, the software-company executive from Newport, California, then 40, was 280 pounds.