Frequently asked questions

Explore our frequently asked questions below, or get in touch with the team. 

We are an innovative GP led weight loss service for people who want to lose weight to improve or reverse their type 2 diabetes. 

There are 2 key aspects to our service: 

  1. We support you to lose weight quickly and safely through a scientifically proven 800 calorie per day meal replacement programme. 
  1. We support you to build healthier lifestyle habits and maintain the weight loss through ongoing personal clinical support. 

This is a clinical intervention supported by our highly experienced and friendly team of clinicians – no unqualified “health coaches” or “weight consultants” here. 

Our service is led by GPs who oversee all aspects of the service and manage your medications as we may need to reduce or stop your medications.

Many of our chronic diseases such as heart disease, high blood pressure, vascular disease, strokes and type 2 diabetes are caused by the same underlying cause: excess weight. Excess weight, often known as obesity, is also known to cause 13 different types of cancers. 

Historically the approach in the medical profession has been to use pharmaceutical drugs to reduce some of your risk factors and whilst these are helpful there is one thing none of them do adequately – address the underlying cause of your disease.

Our approach is to address the underlying cause of chronic disease. Combining the latest scientific evidence and our years of NHS experience we’ve created a programme that helps you lose large amounts of weight rapidly and safely under clinical supervision. Most importantly we’ve created a system that supports maintenance of the weight loss long term – no fad short term diets.

The DiRECT clinical trial published in December 2017 focused on the effects of weight-loss using 800 calorie diets and subsequent weight maintenance as a method for potential type 2 diabetes reversal.

The trial involved splitting over 280 patients across the UK into 2 groups. One group received traditional GP care whilst the treatment group received low calorie total diet replacement. 

Overall almost 1 in 2 (46%) managed to reverse their diabetes. The likelihood of reversal was closely linked to the amount of weight loss. 

For people who lost more than 15kg, almost 9 out of 10 (86%)managed to reverse their diabetes!

Other benefits included lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol, lower use of medication and a feeling of improved quality of life.

The programme is split into 3 phases :

Phase 1 – the rapid weight loss phase

  • This phase lasts between 8-12 weeks depending on your progress through the programme
  • During this phase you will consume 4 of our total diet replacement products per day
  • Each product contains 200 calories meaning you will be consuming approximately 800 calories per day
  • Our clinical team will closely monitor your weight and blood pressure.
  • You will be assigned your own personal Registered Nutritionist who will contact you regularly every 2 weeks throughout the programme. You will be able to also contact them anytime by phone, email or via our Nutrium App if you have questions or should any issues arise.
  • We will support you through planned life events such birthdays and holidays as well as unplanned life events to keep you on track.
  • During this phase our specialist GPs may need to amend your medication and they will work with your GP to ensure this is done safely.

Phase 2 – the food re-introduction phase

  • During weeks 13 – 16 we will drop one of your total diet replacement products every week and replace it with a delicious healthy meal personalised to your existing tastes and habits
  • We will start to introduce some really simple lifestyle changes for you to try, to increase your daily movement and reduce the amount of time you sit. These form part of our Golden 5 Plan – see phase 3
  • We will help you to start modifying your home environment and food shopping habits so that we create barriers to making unhealthy choices
  • We will ask your GP to check your HbA1C levels at week 13 and keep them updated with your medication changes if required
  • With your permission we will contact your spouse/partner to advise them how they can support you during this phase
  • We will continue to monitor your weight and blood pressure every 2 weeks

Phase 3 – the long term weight maintenance phase

  • After week 16 we will focus on our “Golden 5 Plan” which aims to create a healthy environment for you and your family from which good health ensues naturally and with minimal effort.
  • We help you learn to plan for events such as birthdays, weddings and meals out so that you fully enjoy socialising with family and friends
  • We are also here to support you when life throws a wobbly – we call them unplanned life events – such as an unexpected job loss or bereavement. During these times some of us comfort eat and that is ok. Our team will support you as you need during times of crisis and help you get back on track when you are ready
  • If you regain some weight don’t worry – we will pick it up early and have strategies to help you lose it again quickly and easily

Good question! Consuming less calories than you burn for a long sustained period of time can be hard and requires high levels of motivation and meal planning. The 800 calorie meal replacement approach has been scientifically proven by 2 clinical trials (DiRECT and DROPLET trials) in the UK to induce rapid weight loss safely in a short space of time. Our products ensure you get the right amount of protein, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins and minerals while consuming a low number of calories. 

Our products taste delicious due to their unique flavour profile and because they do not contain intense artificial sweeteners. Our team are experienced in working with you to add herbs and spices to the soups to add variety and also non-strachy vegetables in some cases. They keep you full and satisfied as well as help break old habits of snacking at certain times of the day.

  1. Check you meet our inclusion and exclusion criteria (see below). If you are not sure feel free to contact us. We are always happy to talk to you about our programme.
  2. In the shop tab you choose your products. We recommend a minimum of 4 weeks supply to get you started.
  3. Complete the purchase – that’s it.
  4. Our clinical team will contact you within 24 hours to welcome you to our service and will ask some basic medical questions. The products will not be sent to you till this step is completed. 
  5. If we find you are not suitable then we refund your money in full.

Low calorie diets are suitable for most people but not everyone. Please check you meet the requirements below; if you’re not sure don’t worry – we will check for you when you join:

You are suitable if you meet the following:

  • You have type 2 Diabetes or just want to lose weight
  • Minimum age of 20. No upper age limit
  • Minimum BMI 25
  • You are motivated to lose weight and participate in the program

You are not suitable if you meet the following:

  • Current insulin use
  • HbA1C >108 mmol/mol
  • Poor kidney function
  • Severe or unstable heart failure
  • Heart attack or stroke within 6 months
  • Pregnant / breastfeeding or considering pregnancy
  • Severe mental health issues including use of antipsychotics and substance misuse
  • Patients with dementia
  • People having active treatment for cancer
  • Active liver disease
  • Porphyria
  • Palliative patients

If you are unsure about any of the above just contact us at clinicians@thedrc.com

Due to the rapid weight loss it is likely we will need to reduce the number of pills you take to prevent hypoglycaemia (low blood sugars) and possible hypotension (low blood pressure).

Our doctors will advise you what changes need to be made and we will always inform your own NHS GP. We work in partnership with your GP and may speak to them to ensure you get the best care.

We have developed strict de-prescribing protocols to manage this process and are fully insured to do this on behalf of your GP.

Each sachet of shake or soup costs £2.10. During phase 1 you will be required to have 4 products per day which works out to £58.80 per week. These will replace the food you would normally buy.

According to the Office of National Statistics the average spend on food and non-alcoholic beverages in the UK is £60 per week per person. Alcohol adds considerably more to our weekly spend.

Its tempting to think that you can simply buy the products and lose weight. You may have tried this with other weight loss companies and lost some weight only to find you’ve slowly regained it! Our experience is that we all need support to help motivate us and keep us accountable to ourselves. The clinical service is included in the cost of the products during phases 1 and 2 and includes the following:

  • You will be closely monitored and supported by our clinical team remotely to ensure you are losing weight safely
  • Our doctors may need to adjust your medication as you progress through the programme
  • You will be given full access to our Nutrium App where you can message your nutritionist, set up appointments, video call your nutritionist, and track your exercise and food intake.
  • Our goal is to ensure weight loss and help you maintain the weight loss long term. We work proactively with you to achieve this.
  • You will automatically join our community so you can receive regular advice on the latest health topics

Your registered nutritionist will contact you every week to 2 weeks. We make sure you receive the right amount of support for you without interrupting your daily routine.

All our services are delivered remotely by phone, email, secure messaging and video consultations. You will be given details of our Nutrium App to download when you join us.

No – absolutely not.

Our primary aim after helping you achieve your ideal healthy weight is to support you to maintain that weight long term. The relationship you develop with your personal registered nutritionist and our GPs is critically important and our aim is to maintain that relationship long term. 

We would suggest subscribing to phase 3 plan for 9 – 12 months to ensure you are able to fully maintain your healthy weight. However you can cancel this at any time in accordance with our cancellation policy.

This is a self pay service. We are working in partnership with multiple NHS CCGs and GP practices to offer this service locally on the NHS.

From our extensive experience delivering this programme we would suggest you will lose approximately 2 – 5 kg per week (4 – 11 lbs) during phase 1 and 1 -2 kg (2 – 4 lbs) per week during phase 2. However individual results may vary.

During phase 3 you will continue to normalise your weight and maintain it long term.

Our products have been specially formulated by our doctors to reduce the risks of side-effects. The most common side effects are constipation and occasional headaches. You must report any side-effects to our clinical team who will support you to resolve them.

Your medical records, including personal information such as name, address, and the content of any communication with your nurtitionist will be kept strictly confidential and will not be sold to third parties, nor distributed. Please read more about how we keep your data secure in our Privacy Policy.

We work really hard to ensure you receive the best experience. However we may not always get it right. If you are concerned or want to raise a complaint about any aspect of our service please email: feedback@thedrc.com

Please email us on membership@thedrc.com and we will contact you to assist in your cancellation.

100% satisfaction guarantee – If you’re not satisfied with your first order, please call us on 020 3935 9090 to cancel within the first 7 days and return the remaining unopened meal replacement sachets for a full refund. Valid for new members, first order only, limit one per customer. Return shipping cost not reimbursed. Refund paid to customer only once products received by us.  

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