What is the Weight Watchers Diet?

My Bariatric Life Health Guide
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    Is Weight Watchers the Best Diet for Weight Loss?

    The Weight Watchers Diet was the top weight loss diet as ranked by US News experts reviews. It also took first place for easiest diets to follow and for best commercial diet plan.

     

    Deluxe Member Kit The ultimate tools for success! The Deluxe Member Kit is filled with tools to help you make the right decisions and stay on plan. With this kit, you'll have the right information to navigate every aspect of the Weight Watchers PointsPlus® Plan. Plus you'll get the Ready, Set, Go! cookbook, available exclusively in the Deluxe and Complete Member Kits. Included: The Complete Food Companion, Dining Out Companion; Ultimate 3 Month Tracker; PointsPlus Calculator, Sticker Sheet and exclusive Cookbook: Ready, Set, Go!

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    How the Weight Watchers Points Plus Diet Works

    Every food has an assigned points value based on its protein, carb, fat, fiber, and calories, as well as how hard your body has to work to burn it off. You can eat whatever you want €”provided you stick to your daily PointsPlus target -- a number based on your gender, weight, height, and age. 

     

    Members are assigned a daily point target in the range of 26-71 PointsPlus to consume each day. Additionally, members are allowed 49 PointsPlus each week, or weekly points, that they can spend how they wish throughout the week. Physical activity earns activity points that, like weekly points, can be used to supplement the daily points allowance.

    You can check food points online or even on your smart phone. Choices that fill you up the longest cost the least, and nutritionally-dense foods cost less than empty calorie foods. 

    Many fruits and vegetables carry zero points, meaning you can eat as many as you'€™d like.

    Chicken breast cooked without the skin or bone is 3 points for 3 oz., while a similar portion of breast cooked with skin and bone is 5 points. One fried fast food chicken drumstick is 4 points.

    Most 12-ounce beers cost 5 points, so knocking back a few means you'€™ll have fewer points to spend on food. 

    Nutrition on the Weight Watchers Diet

    The Weight Watchers Points Plus Program recommends about 1000 calories per day deficit for weight loss. Their recommended nutrient break down is 26% of calories from fat, 49% of calories from carbohydrates, and 26% of calories from protein. This is  in line with the government'€™s recommendations for fat, protein, and carb consumption.

    Sample Menu for Weight Watchers Diet

    Here is a one-day menu of typical Weight Watchers meals, according to US News, with corresponding PointsPlus values in parentheses:

    Breakfast
    1 cup plain instant oatmeal (3)
    1 cup fat-free cottage cheese (3)
    1 tbsp. jelly or jam (1)
    Apple (0)

    Snack
    6 saltine crackers (2)

    Lunch
    1 cup cooked regular pasta (5)
    ½ cup kidney, garbanzo, pinto, or white beans (3)
    ¼ cup feta cheese (3)
    Diced tomato (0)
    1 cup black bean soup (2)

    Snack

    ½ cup fat-free ice cream (2)

    Dinner
    1 whole-wheat tortilla (2)
    3 oz. tenderloin pork (3)
    ¼ cup fat-free sour cream (1)

  • Chopped tomatoes (0)

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    1 oz. fat-free cheese (1)

    How Much Weight Will You Lose?

    Weight Watchers claims you can shed up to 2 pounds a week.  The program'€™s support system helps dieters keep the weight off. In fact, there’s a strong emphasis on emotional support, which tends to lead to higher compliance. 

    The bottom line: Different diets work for different people and the key is to find an eating plan that you can stick to for the long haul. As for me, I find the sample meal plan to be far too high in carbohydrates. That said, since the WW points plus plan allows you to eat what you want, it is adaptable to the bariatric diet, as well as other low carb diets. It seems that it can accomodate a variety of eating plans and the support system can be very helpful to keeping you on track. Just be sure you are able to handle the flexibility (ie temptations) that accompany such a liberal plan of eating.

     

    Living life well-fed,

    My Bariatric Life

     

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    References 
    US News http://health.usnews.com/best-diet/weight-watchers-diet

    Weight Watchers http://www.weightwatchers.com/util/art/index_art.aspx?tabnum=1&art_id=59781 

Published On: March 28, 2013