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Consumer Reports is publishing in its June issue a ranking of the nation’s major diet plans, evaluating their short-term and long-term efficacy.

Weight Watchers was ranked the best weight loss program because of the weekly support meetings that seem to help users to maintain adherence to the plan for longer periods of time. Second-ranked was Slim-Fast, which actually allowed people to lose weight faster than Weight Watchers, but does not have the long-term staying power.

The Zone Diet ranked third, with the Ornish diet ranked fourth.

The Atkins Diet got high marks for weight loss but lousy ratings for nutrition, criticized for having too much fat, too many calories and not very good retention rates.
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