What do Oprah Winfrey and DJ Khalid have in common?

Well, they both happen to be ambassadors for the Weight Watchers program.

Now you’ve heard of Weight Watchers, and perhaps you even know a little bit about its unique set up. But this has probably raised a few questions as well.

Is it just one of those money-making businesses with no substance, or does it actually work? Do people actually lead healthier lives after joining it? The consensus on those questions remain largely positive (Oprah doesn’t put that stamp of approval on just anything!), but how does Weight Watchers work?

A Simpler Approach to Nutrition and Fitness

Most diets tend to emphasise calories, and with good reason. The only way for you to lose weight is to burn more calories than you consume. However, the math of it all can be confusing, restrictive and even unhealthily addictive to some people.

That’s where Weight Watchers makes a more unique attempt at deciphering the science. Instead of calories, you are now counting points. Every week, you’re allotted a specific number of points that count towards certain foods.

For example, foods that are processed, higher in saturated fats or sugar are worth more points, while eggs and lean meats are worth zero points. So if you’ve been given 30 points for the week, that’s the amount of sugary, processed foods you should be consuming.

They also have “Fit Points” which measures how much activity you should engage in every week.

They Emphasise Personalisation

When you join the program you’ll be asked to set up your profile. This includes putting in data like your sex, your age, your weight, and other important factors. Your weekly points will then be allotted to you based on the data you submit.

They’ve Got 3 Plans to Choose From

Weight Watchers offers up three plans to choose from, each offering a different variety of perks. If you’ve got a strict budget to adhere to, you can consider a more cost-effective plan.

  • The “Online Plus” membership gives you access to the official app online. This is priced at $3 per week.
  • The “Online Plus + Meetings” gives you access to the app as well as allows you to attend various meetings within the community. This is priced at $7 per week.
  • The “1 on 1 Coaching”, allows you all of the above, along with a personal coach to help you create a more personalised plan for yourself. This is priced at $13 per week.

An App That Simplifies Tracking

The app allows you to input your daily food intake and measure your points. This, of course, helps you to track patterns within your eating habits and helps you narrow down what you need to change. You can also connect with peers in a special forum to share insights, progress and whatever difficulty you might be having with regard to your journey.

How Does Weight Watchers Work Towards a Lifestyle Change?

Instead of focussing solely on weight loss or weight gain, it attempts to push you towards a healthier lifestyle. One of the reasons people like it is because of its flexible approach towards leading a healthier life. It’s more about tracking patterns and making small changes that help create a better big picture.

Moderation is the Key

Extremes aren’t good for anybody. And so no, you don’t have to cut out that decadent serving of chocolate cake, you just have to reduce how much you consume it. The occasional slice is completely fine, but it shouldn’t exceed that amount.

So what matters here is portion control, meal planning, and maintaining a good balance of what you want and what your body needs.

Some Fats Are Good Fats

Nutrition is not black or white, it’s grey. Over time, you’ll learn to track your own eating habits without the use of an app. Being mindful of your own nutritional intake is a great skill that everyone should have.

And over time, it’s something you are bound to acquire thru continuous documentation of your dietary and fitness habits.

A Social Network for Those Who Need It

It does have the option of meetings and it gives you access to forums. This is a great tool for anyone who finds motivation and inspiration from communal integration. Of course, if you’re someone who functions better by themselves, you don’t have to opt for it.

However, it does have the option for anyone who could use that occasional pep talk.

Is it Right for You?

If you’re someone who’s always thought of diets as too restrictive or unhealthy, Weight Watchers is a great tool to help you move past that. It does have its fair share of criticisms, and there are certain improvements that could be made, but for someone just looking to lead a healthier lifestyle, this might be a good option.

But what if your goals are different? For example, how does Weight Watchers work for athletes? The truth is, if you’re a serious athlete or a bodybuilder with very specific targets, this might not be something you choose for those goals.

You can still benefit by using the app to track your eating habits and make healthier choices, but you would have more factors to consider.

All in all, it’s a program that most people find effective in achieving their goals when it comes to a consistent, healthy routine.

Need some nutritious, healthy recipes to help you thru your journey? Explore our recipes section for some delicious ideas!