S&P 600 Component
|Industry||Weight loss, multi-level marketing|
|Daniel R. Chard, CEO|
|Revenue||US$ 714 million (2019)|
|US$ 91 million (2019) |
|US$ 77.9 million (2019) |
|Total assets||US$ 195 million (2019) |
|Total equity||US$ 105 million (2019) |
Number of employees
Medifast, Inc. (NYSE: MED) is an American nutrition and weight loss company based in Baltimore, Maryland. Medifast produces, distributes, and sells weight loss and health-related products through websites, multi-level marketing, telemarketing, and franchised weight loss clinics.
The company owns five subsidiaries:
- Jason Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
- Take Shape for Life, Inc. (TSFL) (renamed Optavia from July 2017)
- Jason Enterprises, Inc.
- Jason Properties, LLC
- Seven Crondall, LLC
William Vitale, a medical doctor, founded Medifast in 1980. He sold his products directly to other doctors, who in turn prescribed them to their patients.
On July 17, 1995, HealthRite (predecessor of Medifast) changed its name from Vitamin Specialties Corp.
In 2001, the company changed its name to Medifast, Inc. In 2002, Retired Marine Colonel Bradley T. MacDonald and Chairman of the Board at the time, along with clinical specialist Dr. Wayne Scott Andersen, created Take Shape For Life as a personal Coach to Client system and the company’s “Habits of Health System.” 
Medifast was named one of Forbes 100 Most Trustworthy Companies in America in 2016 and 2017.
In July 2017, Medifast changed the name of its subsidiary Take Shape For Life to Optavia and introduced a new line of products, Optavia Essentials, directly sold from Coaches to clients.
In October 2017, Medifast relocated its headquarters to Baltimore from Owings Mills, Maryland.
The company is public with a market capitalization of $1.4 billion, as of May 2018.
False advertising settlement
In September 2012, Medifast's subsidiary, Jason Pharmaceuticals, paid a $3.7 million USD civil penalty for false advertising. The Federal Trade Commission and United States Department of Justice said that advertisements for the "Medifast 5 & 1 Plan" low-calorie diet told consumers they could "lose up to 2-5 pounds per week", and that these weight-loss claims lacked a reasonable scientific basis, and were unsubstantiated. Under the settlement, any future claims made by the company must be backed by at least one human clinical study.
- "Medifast, Inc. Financials".
- Medifast (11 June 2020). "2019 10-K Report". Securities and Exchange Commission.
- Lorraine Mirabella (February 20, 2017), "Medifast's Take Shape For Life changes name to Optavia" http://www.baltimoresun.com/business/bs-bz-medifast-rebrand-20170220-story.html, retrieved March 12, 2018
- Medifast History Archived 2010-11-27 at the Wayback Machine
- "Medifast Inc". MarketWatch. Retrieved 2019-03-22.
- "Carrying out the legacy of Medifast's turnaround CEO".
- Forbes America's 100 Best Small Companies
- "Medifast on the Forbes America's Best Small Companies List". Forbes. Retrieved July 16, 2015.
- "Medifast earns spot on Forbes' 100 Most Trustworthy Companies list".
- "Medifast's Take Shape For Life changes name to Optavia".
- "Medifast relocating headquarters to Harbor East from Baltimore County".
- David Ingram (September 7, 2012). "Medifast unit settles false ad claims for $3.7 million". Reuters. Retrieved 2012-09-09.
- Lewis, Truman (September 10, 2012). "Medifast Subsidiary Agrees to $3.7 Million Penalty". ConsumerAffairs.com. Retrieved July 16, 2015.