​ An In-Depth HealthyWage Review

Stacy Garrels

Updated Dec 13, 2022

Would you like to lose weight with a bit of friendly competition with yourself or your friends or coworkers? Do you like the idea of winning some cash in the process of losing those pesky extra pounds?

Then Healthy Wage may be the weight loss program for you! HealthyWage makes losing weight fun and competitive. Read on to see our in-depth HealthyWage review to see if it's the right program for you!


Healthy Wage is a weight loss incentive program that pays you to lose weight. You bet on yourself by paying a wager, and if you reach your goals, HealthyWage pays you a cash prize (determined before you start your weight loss journey).

You can win anywhere from $100 to $10,000, but keep in mind that if you don't win, you are out of the money you've bet during the challenge.

Media outlets such as CNN, Good Morning America, and the Today Show have covered HealthyWage.

Keep reading to learn more about the HealthyWage review.

HealthyWage Pros

There are several benefits to using Health Wage as your weight loss incentive program. Here are a few:

  • Losing weight can be fun with HealthyWage.
  • You can lose the amount of weight you feel comfortable with to win your challenge (as long as it's 10% of your body weight).
  • Losing weight may be easier because you are more motivated when putting your money on the line and potentially receiving a financial incentive.
  • You can start your challenge whenever you want by weighing in on the HealthyWage app (this prompts the start of your challenge).
  • Weighing in is easy and stress-free, taking about 30 seconds.
  • The app has tools to help you on your weight loss journey.
  • If you win, you get paid via paper check or PayPal.

HealthyWage Cons

  • The program is a financial investment and can be expensive depending on how much you wagered.
  • You can lose money if you don't win your wager.
  • The program has a strict "no refunds policy" (even if you get pregnant)
  • Per their rules, you cannot participate in the program while pregnant. The challenge is suspended as soon as you think you are pregnant, and you must supply proof of pregnancy before the challenge and payments are paused. When your doctors clear you to return, they resume your challenge.
  • It can potentially lead to disordered eating or unhealthy habits if you're trying to reach your goal that is too hard or you did not give yourself enough time to lose weight healthily.
  • Processing fees for payment ($7.00 for a paper check or 2.9% + .30 cents for PayPal).
  • Once you factor in your monthly wager, processing fees, and prize money, you may only profit a little.
  • You may experience weight gain after the competition is over if you are no longer motivated by the prize amount.

HealthyWage Highlights

Get Paid to Lose Weight

  • One of the biggest highlights of the plan is you can earn money by reaching your weight loss goal. The prize can be up to $10,000, although the average winner receives $1,203.

Win Prize Money

  • As stated above, the prize money is a massive highlight for the company. You get paid to lose weight, an incentive for many people.

Compete with Friends and Coworkers

  • Motivation and friendly competition can be a massive incentive to people, and many have found weight loss success this way. A Healthywager challenge is a great way to get your friends and coworkers to join in on the fun and lose weight!

Backed by Science

  • A Journal of American Medical Association study has shown that individuals who put their own money on the line have a higher percentage of being successful in a weight loss program.

Legitimate Company

  • HealthyWage has paid out millions of dollars since 2009. Although the company is not Better Business Bureau accredited, they do have an A+ rating with them online.

Simple Process

  • The sign-up process is easy and streamlined. You decide how much weight you want to lose, how long you need, and how much you are willing to wager. The HealthyWage website and app are easy to navigate, which makes it a user-friendly process.

No Required Check-Ins

  • Many diet programs require weekly or monthly coaching calls or daily logs in an app, but HealthyWage does not. The only check-in requirements are at the beginning of the challenge when you weigh in and then at the end for your final weigh-out procedure. These are very simple and streamlined and only take a few minutes.

No Required Meal Plan

  • Vegetarian, paleo, keto, or anything in between. HealthyWage does not require a specific meal plan but instead wants you to adopt healthy habits (eating, exercise, and more). This is a benefit to the program that you do not have to purchase specific food or meal plans, and if you are happy with your existing meal plan and diet, you can keep it.

What is HealthyWage?

HealthyWage is a weight loss program established in 2009 where an individual will bet money that they will lose weight and win a cash prize.

The program uses motivation (to improve health, energy, etc.) and structure (cash prizes and goals) to equal success.

In a randomized, controlled study published by the Journal of the American Medical Association, people who put their own money on the line were five times more likely to hit their goal.

According to the study, using economic incentives produced significant weight loss during the 16 weeks of intervention that was not fully sustained. The study would like to see how the longer-term use of incentives will affect participants.

How Does HealthyWage Work?

HealthyWage is relatively simple. You input how many pounds you want to lose (at least 10% of your current body weight), how long you need to reach your goal (6-18 months), and how much you want to bet per month (your total bet must equal at least $200 throughout your challenge).

HealthyWage will then use its proprietary algorithm to determine how much money you will win if you win your bet. The algorithm takes several factors into account:

  • Your current weight
  • Your BMI
  • Your gender
  • The amount of money you bet per month
  • The amount of time for the challenge
  • The time of year you make your bet
  • And more.

he algorithm is constantly being fine-tuned, so there is no guarantee that two people with similar stats will have an equal payout. Once you make your bet, you are locked in, and your payout will not change.

Please keep in mind if your goal is too low, your prize will be small. If your goal is too high, your award will be more significant, but the chances of winning are lower.

Your challenge begins once you complete your verified weigh-in (more on this later). At the end of the challenge, you will weigh out. That's it!

Once you've hit your goal and submitted your end weight, you will complete a winner confirmation form, including a photo identification to confirm your height and identity.

The last step is payday, where you will be paid via PayPal or paper check, depending on your choice. Please note that there is a processing fee for paper checks ($7.00) and PayPayl (2.9% + .30 cents).

What are the mission and goals of HealthyWage?

HealthyWage has a goal to put an end to the world's biggest epidemic: obesity.

Obesity affects every group of people, regardless of socioeconomic status, and is the leading cause of preventable deaths in the US, second to smoking. Around 70% of adults in the US are obese or overweight, which can cause various other health conditions.

HealthyWage provides structure, accountability, and motivation that can help overcome these challenges to losing weight. The company believes this could be the critical missing element in the battle against obesity.

Is there a HealthyWage app?

Yes! HealthyWage app can be downloaded on the Apple Store or Google Play. With over 200,000 downloads across both app stores, the company has impressive reviews and ratings.

The app is where you weigh in to start your challenge and do your final weight-out and verification video. The app is safe and secure and encrypts your data.

How Much Weight Can You Lose on HealthyWage?

What you lose depends on the goals you set for yourself and the wager you make! The great thing about HealthyWage is that you control your weight loss and how much you want to lose.

The CDC recommends 1-2 lbs per week as a healthy weight loss depending on your weight loss goals and time frame.

HealthyWage lets you know during the sign-up process if you should increase your weight loss goal (based on BMI, length of time, etc.) or lower it per CDC standards. This ensures you are making a healthy bet and not one that is entirely unrealistic.

How Much Weight Do You Have to Lose to Win Your Wager?

When you set your weight loss goal, it must be at least 10% of your body weight to qualify for a challenge.

For example: if your initial weight is 200 pounds, your HealthyWage goal must be at least 20 pounds of weight loss. If your starting weight is 150, your HealthyWage goal must be at least 15 pounds.

You also must invest at least $200 over six months to have a qualifying bet.

Depending on your personal weight loss goal and wager will determine how many pounds you need to lose to win your wager. This is a significant positive to the program because you control your weight loss goal.

If you need extra time to lose weight and win your wager, you can "Buy More Time." This allows you to add six months and six more payments to your entire challenge. Your original price and weight loss goal will remain.

This option allows participants more time without resorting to unhealthy weight loss tactics.

How Much Can You Bet on HealthyWage?

You can bet anywhere from $5-$995 per month on HealthyWage. The main requirement for this portion is that your total bet must be at least $200 throughout your challenge length.

According to HealthyWage, the average investment is about $60 for nine months, and the average cash prize for all bettors is $1,203.

It is important to be realistic about how much you can afford when considering your wager and how much you want to bet. There are strictly no cancellations or refunds, so keep this in mind when signing up.

How Much Money Can You Make Doing HealthyWage?

Thousands of people have won money using HealthyWage, and you can win too!

Cash prizes range from $100-$10,000, depending on your wager.

The bigger bets you make, the better the payoff will be. If you make a conservative bet, the potential profit will be smaller.

Remember the money you are paying each month and compare that to the prize amount at the end.

Can You Lose Money on HealthyWage?

Yes. As with any program or weight loss challenge where you are betting with real money, losing it all is possible. You must reach your goal weight in time to retain the money you have bet. You can "Buy More Time," which gives you an additional six months and six more monthly wagers.

HealthyWage does not offer refunds, and you cannot leave the challenge early unless due to extreme medical conditions (where you need to provide formal medical documentation).

A significant criticism of HealthyWage is that it could create financial hardship for individuals who may have a change in their income, with no way to stop the challenge.

According to HealthyWage, "part of our job is to prevent you from giving up, so you can't quit -- there are absolutely no cancellations or refunds. HealthyWage will suspend your challenge if you are pregnant".

If you are pregnant, you will not get a refund. Instead, your wager will be "paused," and you can start back up after you get cleared by your doctor postpartum.

You can also join up to 10 challenges simultaneously, like the HealthyWage jackpot challenges and HealthyWage step challenges. However, you can only compete in one individual challenge at a time.

Each challenge costs an additional "bet" or dollar amount per month. Depending on the challenge you join will depend on how much it costs. This additional financial investment can cause even more money to be lost if you don't win the other challenges.

Can You Do HealthyWage if You Do Weight Loss Surgery?

HealthyWage does not take a position on whether surgery is a good idea for any particular patient. The company believes that it is between you and your doctor.

However, if you are at least one year out from your weight loss surgery, you may participate in the HealthyWage weight loss challenge.

If you are within one year of any weight loss surgery, including liposuction, you are not eligible for any HealthyWage prize.

If you take weight loss pills, you can join the program with advanced doctor approval.

What is the HealthyWage "Yo-Yo" Rule?

HealthyWage also has a "yo-yo" rule where if you won a prize of $200 or more in any single HealthyWage challenge, you must start your next wager at or below the weight that you ended the last challenge in which you won $200 or more.

Example: If you won a team challenge with an ending weight of 150 pounds and then gained 40 pounds back to start your next challenge, your starting weight for HealthyWager will be adjusted to 150 pounds. This prevents people from losing weight and gaining it back repeatedly without maintaining it. 

How is Your Weight and Weight Loss Verified?

To keep the process fair and equitable to everyone, HealthyWage requires two weigh-ins. Once at the beginning of the challenge, which triggers the start, and once at the end of your challenge.

You are not required to do monthly weigh-ins or other check-ins during your challenge. This gives you the freedom to lose the weight how you prefer and does not pressure you to do monthly check-ins.

However, if you want accountability, you can do the non-verified weigh-ins on the app to track your progress.

HealthyWage makes the process as streamlined as possible. Depending on your preference, there are two different ways to do it. No matter your choice, the only tools needed are a smartphone and a scale.

  1. Download the HealthyWage mobile app after registering and follow the on-screen instructions. This lets one of the HealthyWage referees remotely witness your weigh-in, which takes about two minutes.
  2. Make a short weigh-in video that you upload securely to the Health Wage website.

HealthyWage makes it as easy as possible to do your verified check-ins, which users appreciate. 

To end your challenge, you can follow the same steps during your weigh-out window.

How Do HealthyWage Team Challenges Work?

There is no better way to lose weight and win big than to compete in a team challenge. These Team Challenges can be done through an employer, or you can pool together a group of friends.

You complete in teams of five for $10,000! You can get matched with a group if you don't have five people. If you lose the most significant percentage of weight in the challenge as a team, you can win the top prize of $10,000. 

The top team wins $10,000, the second place wins $5,000, and the third place wins $3,000. Plus $2,000 in additional prizes (wow!).

After six months, you can weigh in again and get your registration fee reimbursed for maintaining your weight loss!

You can sign up today for the January 6, 2023, Team Challenge.

How Long Does it Take to Get Paid on HealthyWage?

HealthyWage makes the process easy!

There are two ways to get paid; either via PayPal or a paper check in the mail. Keep in mind that there are fees associated with both payment methods.

  • Paper Check: $7.00 processing fee.
  • PayPal: 2.9% + .30 cents (except in special circumstances).

Healthy Wage prides itself on paying its winners quickly and promptly. There is a 3-day average for PayPal and a 7-day average for paper checks.

In the last 12 months, the company has paid out $9,929,136.38!

Does Everyone Using HealthyWage Lose Weight?


Although there are many success stories with Healthy Wage challenges, as with any diet or weight loss program, many people do not lose weight.

Healthy Wage has reported that from September 2021 to September 2022, 50% of participants report weight loss when participating in a Healthy Wage Challenge.

One HealthyWage review stated, "HealthyWage has flipped on a switch that I just couldn't seem to get clicked on by myself. Not sure, or what science is behind it, but this...is astounding!"

Other HealthyWage reviews have stated many successful participants had tried many different weight loss and diet programs, but they were not successful until HealthyWage.

How is HealthyWage Better Than Other Weight Loss Programs?

Healthy Wage is better than other weight loss and diet programs because they pay you to lose weight, and you are in control over the terms of your goals. 

While there is a monthly or one-time investment on how much you choose to wager, you may recoup that money plus some if you win.

Healthy Wage creates a fun and competitive atmosphere where you can compete with yourself and others during the competition period. Many people report being motivated to lose weight with their own money on the line.

The weight you want to lose and the length of the challenge are also up to you. This differs from other programs, which may have stricter timeline requirements or monthly or weekly weigh-ins. 

You don't have to weigh in every month or lose a certain amount of weight to participate in Healthy Wage.

There is no specific meal plan associated with the challenge. This means you can eat your typical diet without modifying or restricting it. However, many people have found that changing their diet can help them reach their weight loss goals.

What Are the Downsides of HealthyWage Compared to Other Weight Loss Plans?

Many benefits of Health Wage can also be a downside to the challenge, depending on personal factors.

One of the most considerable downsides to HealthyWage is the potentially significant investment and no way to cancel. This can potentially be problematic for people with gambling or other addictions. The idea of winning a lot of money may cause them to wager unrealistic bets or cause them to choose unhealthy weight loss techniques. 

There is a strict no-refund or cancellation policy. So if you sign up for a 12-month bet, you are unable to cancel. The company claims this is to keep you motivated, but others believe this is unethical.

There is no meal plan or nutritional guidance. While some people may like this, others may also want a program that offers nutritional coaching.

Once the challenge is over, there is no follow-up, and it may be hard to keep off the weight. People may need to be part of a challenge to keep the motivation, which helped them lose weight in the first place. 

Who is HealthyWage Best Suited For?

HealthyWage is best suited for adults who are serious about losing weight and love a little healthy competition.

HealthyWage bettors range from wanting to lose anywhere from less than 30 pounds to more than 150 pounds, with the current average goal being 47 pounds.

People with different goals and timelines use HealthyWage to jumpstart their weight loss journey.

HealthyWage would not be well suited for someone with past experiences with eating disorders or any other conditions that their doctors have advised them not to do a weight loss program.

Bottom Line on HealthyWage

HealthyWage can be an excellent tool for losing weight and jumpstarting your weight loss journey. Approximately 50% of participants have successfully completed the challenge program and won money in the process.

Getting paid to lose the weight you've been carrying around is one of the most unique features of the program. This can be incredibly incentivizing for many people, and many past participants said this was their primary motivator.

Money can be a huge motivator for many people, and HealthyWage has proved that by paying out millions of dollars since the company started in 2009.

We hope you have learned some valuable information from our HealthyWage review!

About HealthyWage and Its Founders

HealthyWage was founded in 2009 by David Roddenberry and James Fleming and has grown to be a leading provider of outcomes-based corporate and consumer weight loss and diet programs. 

Roddenberry has prior experience designing research-based weight loss programs for employers and consumers. He has a degree in cognitive neuroscience and internal health policy. 

Fleming has over a decade of experience designing weight loss programs for the world's largest employers and consumers.

The company headquarters are in New York, New York, and Coral Gables, Flordia, with 11-50 employees per Linkedin.

About the Author

Stacy Garrels


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