OWINGS MILLS, Md., Sept. 12, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Medifast, Inc. (NYSE: MED), a leading United States manufacturer and provider of clinically proven, portion-controlled weight-loss products and programs, is proud to announce the launch of its first ever National Discover Your Optimal Health Day presented by its Take Shape For Life division. The purpose of this special day is to encourage a lifestyle of healthy eating habits and regular physical activity—for everyone, at every age. In light of the American Medical Association's (AMA) decision to recognize obesity as a disease and with current statistics showing that 67 percent of Americans are overweight or obese, Medifast's Take Shape For Life division has asked health coaches across the country to encourage their communities to "walk across America" in a single day for Optimal Health. "By encouraging families and communities to metaphorically 'walk across the country," Take Shape For Life Health Coaches are teaching families the importance of being active and healthy," said Michael MacDonald, Medifast's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. Take Shape For Life Health coaches across various cities in the U.S. will be holding more than 200 community walks and over 800 Healthy Happy Hour events to promote active lifestyles and healthy habits. More than 18,000 participants in all will walk a minimum of one mile, totaling approximately 18,000 miles—or six times the distance of the U.S in a single day. "The first steps in changing this nationwide issue include awareness, understanding, and taking action. National Discover Your Optimal Health Day allows everyone to come together in order to begin to take positive steps towards making a difference," said Dr. Wayne Scott Andersen, Take Shape For Life's Co-founder and Medical Director. "It's exciting to see so many people around the country join this initiative." About Medifast: Medifast (NYSE: MED) is the leading easy-to-use, clinically proven, portion-controlled weight-loss program. The company sells its products and programs via four unique distribution channels: 1) the web and national call centers, 2) the Take Shape For Life personal coaching division, 3) Medifast Weight Control Centers, and 4) a national network of physicians. Medifast was founded in 1980 and is located in Owings Mills, Maryland. For more information, log onto www.MedifastNow.com. About Take Shape For Life: Take Shape For Life® is the personal-coaching division of Medifast, Inc. The coaching network consists of independent Health Coaches, who are trained to provide coaching and support to clients using the Medifast weight-loss program and the Habits of Health System as defined by co-founder Dr. Wayne Scott Andersen. For more information, log onto TSFL.com. About Dr. Wayne Scott Andersen: Dr. Wayne Scott Andersen is the co-founder and medical director of Take Shape For Life. His groundbreaking books are a core component of the successful program. He and his wife, Lori, were the first Take Shape For Life health coaches and have tremendously influenced the 11,000+ Health Coaches now involved with Take Shape for Life. An innovator and tireless champion of America's health, Dr. A is dedicated to providing inspiration to those who want to make a difference in the fight against obesity. He is the former director of the Surgical Critical Care Program and Chairman of the Department of Anesthesiology at Grandview Hospital.