Kimkins is an online diet program created by Heidi Diaz under the pseudonym ‘Kimmer’ that became famous in 2007 in the magazine ” Woman’s World ”. The program became embroiled in controversy when it was found that it was morbidly obese and had some false testimonials on its website.
The diet was developed by Diaz on an online message board focusing on low-carbohydrate diets Lowcarbfriends.com in 2006. Diaz left the board in 2006 to start Kimkins with a partner, and in January 2007 Kimkins. The program gained popularity when ” Woman’s World ” published in a feature on the diet and its creator ‘Kim Drake’ in their June 12, 2007 issue. In August 2007, there was considerable negative coverage of the diet appearing on the internet, particularly in the form of blogs and several of the site’s administrators have been fired after publicly questioning the diet. In September 2007 a private investigator was hired to investigate Diaz, exposing her real identity to numerous photos demonstrating she was morbidly obese.
A class action lawsuit was launched against the web site in March, 2008 after it was revealed that the diet was a 300-pound woman named Heidi Diaz who was promoting the diet under the pseudonym Kim ‘Kimmer’ Drake. During investigations for the site, it was found that the website took in $ 1,200,000 during the month of June, 2007 alone. It was revealed that the post-weight loss photos were taken from a mail-order bridging website rather than actually representing someone who actually had undertaken the diet. Numerous testimonials on the website have been falsified, and several of the website employees have been fired for questioning the safety of the diet.
Members of the website were banned after they disagreed with Diaz online. People who have failed to lose weight are quickly blamed for not adhering to the diet strictly enough. Diaz encourages people to continue following the plan despite showing signs of eating disorders. The diet won an award for “Worst Product for 2008” from the healthyweight.net website. The Los Angeles Better Business Bureau gives the company a rating of “F,” which means they “strongly question the company’s reliability” that they have failed to respond, their advertising is grossly misleading, they are not in compliance the law’s licensing or registration requirements, their complaints contain especially serious allegations, or the company’s business is known for its fraudulent business practices. “