At 5 feet 10 inches, the software-company executive from Newport, California, then 40, was 280 pounds.

My two summers at camp taught me more about myself than I ever thought I knew.

As of last month, I’ve managed to lose about 60 pounds!

"I didn't want to get pampered; I wanted to get healthy." Weight-loss retreats, spas, and resorts for adults -- the grown-up version of fat camps -- have been around for decades. After two weeks of swimming and fitness classes, she lost 11 pounds.

But now, fueled by growing awareness of the health risks of obesity and the popularity of weight-loss shows such as The Biggest Loser, they seem to be on the rise. "It was a great jump start for me," says Ackerman, who returned to the institute twice and went on to lose more than 100 pounds.

The weight loss has transformed me physically, mentally, and emotionally.

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"I think I lost eight pounds, but that's only because they starve you," Mc Laren says. " "Weight-loss camps are not an easy or quick fix," says Jennifer Hester, a sports exercise and education researcher at Leeds Metropolitan University, in the U. "The short-term investment of time and money does not automatically equate to healthy weight management in the long term." A new generation of weight-loss resorts Between 20, the number of accredited youth weight-loss camps in the U. Y., which opened its doors in 1968 -- helped bring weight-loss programs for kids and teens into the spotlight.

Similar programs for adults are now widely available.

Instead of stressing extreme weight loss in a short period of time, these programs tend to focus on sustainable lifestyle changes.