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Lose It Now: Manuel Villacorta Gives Incentives for Weight Loss

By L.K. Regan

From nutritionist Manuel Villacorta—spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association and creator of the website Eating Free—we heard about a study with some pretty interesting results. It followed people who had weight loss surgery versus those who didn't, and found that, for men in particular, surgery can have serious consequences. Luckily, Manuel is starting a weight loss challenge next week with a big prize and the opportunity to make a permanent lifestyle change, surgery-free.

Weight loss surgeries come with risks, especially for men. A study published this month in the urology journal BJUI studied 176 people who had had laparoscopic gastric banding surgery at a hospital in Australia. Among the women, the surgery gave them better urinary function and general quality of life. The men, not so much. A quarter of the men reported some incontinence after the surgery, and over 80% had some decrease in erectile function. "It really is the case that losing weight has to be a lifestyle approach," Manuel says. Indeed, it seems that a surgical weight loss could harm one's lifestyle, or at least quality of life.

Which brings us to the helpful part: Manuel is offering a weight loss challenge on his website,, starting on January 24th. The cost is $99—this is Manuel's own challenge, not a RealJock contest, so it will not be free like the challenges we've had in the past. But, Manuel is also offering a $1,000 prize for the person who makes the biggest lifestyle change. That means not just losing weight, but really changing how you relate to food—exactly what no surgery can do.

This challenge includes a 12-week package (check out what you'll get here), services usually valued at $600 for only $99. And, in previous challenges, all of the participants lost weight. In fact, the person shown on the sign-up page is Kevin, a RealJock member and previous RealJock/Manuel Villacorta weight loss challenge winner. We'd love to see one of you be another Kevin.