weight watchers diet explained

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Weight Watchers(WW) is one of the most popular weight-loss programs in the world.
as of 2018, Weight Watchers rebranded to become WW. The new company tagline, “Wellness That Works” highlights WW’s shift from purely weight loss to overall health and wellness.
Millions of people have joined it hoping to lose pounds. WW is also focused on inspiring healthy living and improving overall well-being. That includes taking a holistic approach to help members eat healthier and move more.
Unlike diets that forbid certain foods, WW allows users to indulge within reason. This means members can go out to dinner or attend a party without worrying if the food served will fit into their diet plan. Plus, WW is a good choice for people with dietary restrictions, like vegans or those with food allergies, since members choose how they spend their SmartPoints.

how weight watchers work?

Initially, WW used an exchange system where foods were counted according to servings, similar to the diabetes exchange system. In the 90s, it introduced a points-based system that assigned values to foods and drinks based on their fiber, fat and calorie contents.
to follow the program, you must be willing to keep track of the foods(and their associated SmartPoints)that you consume each day. This tedious and time-consuming task may be a turnoff for some. Another potential downfall is that it may be too expensive for some people.
WW has overhauled the points-based system several times over the years, most recently launching the SmartPoints system in 2015.
The SmartPoints system gives each food, drink, and WW recipe a value. You get points to use each day based on your needs. The goal is to lose 1 to 2 lbs (pounds) (0.5-0.9 kg [kilogram]) each week.
although the WW program may be too lenient for those who struggle with self-control, You can still have a treat once in a while, eat at a special event, or go out to dinner when you use this plan.
Weight Watchers urges members to avoid foods high in sugar and saturated fats including Sugary drinks, Potato chips, Processed meats, Candy, Cakes and cookies. instead they can indulge in Lean proteins: skinless chicken, eggs, tofu, fish, shellfish, non-fat yogurt; Non-starchy vegetables: broccoli, asparagus, greens, cauliflower, peppers; Healthy carbohydrates: sweet potatoes, brown rice, oatmeal, beans, whole-grain products; Healthy fats: avocado, olive oil, nuts.
Your daily points is based on the amount of energy your body needs to lose weight based on things like your gender, age, height, and weight. You can break down your points by breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks. WW has lots of meals with the points figured out, like a 230-calorie, glazed-yeast donut is 10 SmartPoints, while 230 calories of yogurt topped with blueberries and granola is only 2 SmartPoints, for other examples, a serving of lasagna (worth 6 points) or grilled chicken salad (8 points).
Since high calorie or empty calorie foods use more points, limiting those will reduce your overall energy intake and help you lose weight.
Counting points is a big part of the program, but WW also wants you to be active.
Rather than a one-size-fits all approach, WW encourages members to be active in ways each individual enjoys. That considers factors ranging from a person’s age to their current fitness level when determining things like duration and intensity. Of course, health experts agree that everyone is best served by staying active.
Pasta, cheese, ice cream. no food is off-limits on this popular weight loss plan, which has been named best weight loss diet in U.S. News & World Reports’ annual Best Diets assessment.
Fad diets can also be dangerous for anyone who has had or may be prone to eating disorders. The general rule of thumb? Steer clear of diets that sound too good to be true or promise rapid weight loss.
WW is not a fad approach, but rather a slow and steady plan. Although the WW system has evolved over the years, it has always been about creating a balanced diet, eating in moderation, and eating the foods you want.
In 2017, WW revamped the SmartPoints program to make it more flexible and user-friendly. The new system, called WW Freestyle, is based on the SmartPoints system but includes over 200 foods rated zero points.
According to the WW website, WW Freestyle makes life simpler for dieters because zero-point foods do not have to be weighed, measured or tracked, allowing more freedom when planning meals and snacks.
Zero-point foods include eggs, skinless chicken, fish, beans, tofu and non-fat plain yogurt, among many other high-protein, low-calorie foods.

what does research say about weight watchers?

One major disadvantage of the program is that WW coaches are not medical professionals trained in diet and nutrition. Instead, they’re people who have seen success losing weight with this approach.
One study found that overweight people who were told to lose weight by their doctors lost twice as much weight on the WW program than those who received standard weight loss counseling from a primary care professional.
A study published in the May 2017 issue of Lancet of more than 1,200 overweight or obese patients in British primary care practices found that assigning participants to a WW program for at least 12 weeks was more effective than providing brief advice and self-help materials for weight loss. A year-long program resulted in even more weight loss and was cost-effective, concluded the study supported by the U.K. National Prevention Research Initiative and Weight Watchers International.
A November 2014 review in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes looked at the results of previous studies comparing Atkins, South Beach, WW and Zone diets. It found that all but South Beach were equally effective at achieving sustained weight loss for more than a year. WW did have one advantage, though: In studies that compared it with usual care, rather than with other diets, it was the only diet that “consistently demonstrated greater efficacy at reducing weight at 12 months” the researchers wrote.
That finding supports a 2011 study in the Lancet showing that WW is more effective than standard weight-loss guidance. Researchers tracked 772 overweight and moderately obese people who either followed WW or got weight-loss guidance from their primary care doctors. After a year, those in the WW group had dropped 15 pounds compared with 7 pounds for the doctor-advised group. What’s more, 61 percent of the WW participants stuck with the program for the full 12 months the study lasted, compared with 54 percent for the standard-care group. The program’s success is likely explained by its regular weigh-ins and group meetings, which hold dieters accountable while offering support and motivation. WW funded the study, but an independent research team was responsible for all data collection and analysis.
A 2013 study in the American Journal of Medicine also suggests WW has major benefits over standard “self-help” approaches. In it, researchers found overweight and obese participants assigned to WW were nearly nine times more likely to lose 10 percent of their weight than participants who were only provided with printed materials and publicly accessible websites and tools for weight loss. The more WW participants used the program’s various tools – including meetings, a mobile phone app and online tools – the more weight they lost.
WW seems to be worth the cost. In a study published in 2011 in the British Medical Journal, researchers found that people lost more weight – and saved money – when they enrolled in a commercial weight-loss program as opposed to a primary care-based program. After 12 weeks, WW participants had lost 9.8 pounds; those on a primary care-guided plan had dropped 3 pounds.
A 2014 research review in the journal Obesity reviewed other randomized controlled trials of weight loss programs to determine which program offered the best shot at weight loss for its cost to the wallet and quality of life. WW fared best – costing $155 per kilogram lost and $34,630 per quality adjusted life year gained.
A 2013 study in the journal Obesity compared WW to professionally directed weight-loss treatments. It found that participants stuck with traditional WW longer and were more likely to lose weight than they were with the treatment delivered by a specialized weight loss clinic. Nearly 150 overweight or obese men and women were assigned to one of three groups: a behavioral weight-loss treatment led by a health professional; WW, whose groups are led by WW staff; or a hybrid program that started with 12 weeks of behavioral weight-loss treatment, followed by 36 weeks of WW. All programs lasted a total of 48 weeks. People in all three groups lost weight, but on average, WW participants lost a little more than 13 pounds, compared with a little less than 12 pounds for those in the professionally led group, and nearly 8 pounds for those in the combination group.
In a 2015 Annals of Internal Medicine review of studies evaluating commercial weight loss programs, researchers reported they “found consistent evidence supporting the long-term efficacy of WW and Jenny Craig.” The study found WW participants achieved at least 2.6 percent greater weight loss at 12 months, compared with those who underwent no intervention other than receiving health education. The review found following Jenny Craig resulted in at least 4.9 percent greater weight loss at 12 months than education and counseling. Researchers noted it was unclear whether WW was superior to undergoing behavioral counseling to lose weight.
Many studies support the effectiveness of the program. A study published in April 2015 in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine found study participants using WW consistently lost more weight than those not on the diet. While almost 3 percent showed greater weight loss after a year, it was unclear whether WW was more successful than behavioral counseling.
Research has also shown the WW diet to be effective for people with type 2 diabetes. One study published in October 2017 in the journal BMJ Open Diabetes Research & Care found almost one-half of participants referred to WW had a reduced risk of developing diabetes, or had blood sugar levels return to normal.