Why I Don’t Trust Weight Watchers Points System

By Laura Moncur @ 3:38 pm — Filed under:

Weight Watchers Points make keeping track of calories very easy, but they are overkill. The Weight Watchers formula has been registered as a patented formula for giving values to food using calories, fat and fiber. I have a couple of problems with the Points Program:

  • Fat is counted twice: Fat is a macronutrient that accounts for nine calories per gram, so the Weight Watchers Points system counts it once with its calories and again as fat grams. It entices people to choose low fat foods, which might be a healthier option, but I find it to be inaccurate for calorie calculation.

  • Fiber is overrated: Fiber is an important macronutrient, but the Weight Watchers Points system weighs it far heavily than it should. Additionally, many diet foods have caught on to this and have added fiber to foods where it doesn’t occur naturally. If you carefully look at the food labels, many manufacturers have started adding the equivalent of a teaspoon of Metamucil to their food in order to lower the Points value.

Weight Watchers originally created this elaborate formula to encourage its people to eat foods that are lower in fat and higher in fiber. That’s a great philosophy, but it’s not good accounting. Keep track of what really counts: calories.

But Weight Watchers Points are so easy…

You’re right. They are. If you want to keep track of your food using the Weight Watchers Points, go ahead. It’s a relatively accurate system of monitoring your intake, and it’s better than not keeping track at all. If you are familiar with it and you like the program, stay with it. The first rule is to write down everything you eat. If you keep track of your calories using the Weight Watchers Points, it’s really just a shorthand and will work. If you don’t know the Weight Watchers Points, then don’t follow their system, just keep track of your calories. Calories are more accurate anyway.


123 Responses to “Why I Don’t Trust Weight Watchers Points System”

  1. Autumn Says:

    Re: “Keep track of what really counts: calories.”

    You are totally correct with this – if you are talking about weight loss. But I do think it’s important that WW is promoting HEALHTY habits, i.e., low in fat, high in fiber. I don’t follow any diet program myself, but I do keep track of what I’m eating and I will “weigh” my food options depending on what nutrients they have (or don’t have). I am not too familiar with WW, so I don’t know if they are straightforward in promoting these habits, but from my impression, I would say they are doing a good thing by encouraging habits that can stick with someone every after he or she goes off the program.

  2. Darice Says:

    As I understand it, WW used to let you count all fiber grams; now they’ve shaved it down so you can count up to “four or more.” Which I think is a bit better in terms of realistic calorie counting. (The adding Metamucil thing, though… uggggh.)

    I think the trick with WW is that the Points are part of teaching proper portion sizes and food combinations — you’re rewarded for making the better choices. That did help me quite a bit, particularly at the beginning when I was still learning. But you’re right — what really works is consuming less calories than you expend, and WW’s Points system is just window dressing to encourage their participants to choose low-fat, higher fiber foods.

    I’m actually at the point now where the Points-counting is boring me, so I’ve switched to Core for a while.

  3. Ernie Says:

    I use Weight Watchers when I want to shed some pounds. My reason is, as you have said, it makes it easier. And it’s worked for me. I don’t think it’s a magical plan, though. There’s a reason it works for me and I know it.

    You bring up good points. (No pun intended here.) Fat and fiber may not be accounted as appropriately as they should be. I even remembering plotting how I could add fiber to my ice cream just to make it less Points. I came to my senses, but how many people actually do that? Do they really think that fiber will magically cancel out the fat or calories?

    What’s the reason Weight Watchers works? Let’s try an experiment. Sit very still in a quiet room alone. Do as little as possible except, pay attention to your breathing. Don’t try to control it, just pay attention to it. After a while, your breaths will become very regular, deep breaths. Normally, we tend to breath without knowing it and, accordingly, only when we need it.

    Weight Watchers worked the same for me. If I pay attention to what I eat, I eat only when I need it. It’s just that simple.

    I suppose I could try other methods, but like you said this has worked for me in the past and I know it. I don’t count Points anymore, but I pay attention to my hunger level and eat the right things at the right times. Currently, I’m trying out Weight Watchers’ Core system. It seems to be working.

    Laura, do you just count calories then? Or do you pay attention to fat content as well? Just curious.

  4. iportion Says:

    WW works due to their meetings, good online support and they make journaling easy. Journaling is the key. I count in part points because of the problems you state. I think WW zero point foods other than veggies are a problem as well as lowering for points for fiber. I think it be easier that way if all serving sizes were the same points if you have one or two, or three, You can stall losses with arterially high fiber zero point foods. Though I think I’d always count non instant oatmeal as 2 points no matter what 🙂

    I also think it’s important that WW is promoting HEALHTY habits. The fact they make journaling food easier is a plus.

  5. Bill Nadraszky Says:

    Laura, you are right. Weight Watchers punishes bad things too hard and rewards good things more than it probably should. The only way to get extra points is through exercise, which is good as is the fiber thing but if you are crazy you could eat a few chocolate chip cookies and nothing else for the day but your water, fruit and milk and that is OK too. One of the ways that I know that someone lost weight on Weight Watchers was by taking ephedrine and staying within their points. The trouble with this weight loss is that if you stop counting points and stop taking your ephedrine (as you likely should) then you will gain the points back.

    I do believe though that Weight Watchers is great because it allows you to learn what is good and bad for food and it does seem to have been proven to work for most people to lose weight gradually and safely.

  6. BiBi Says:

    When I joined WW years ago, they counted the fiber a lot more. I started eating high fiber bread and cereal and it would fill me up for not a lot of points. I sort of miss that.

  7. Karen Says:

    I have just came back from my weightwatchers meeting after completing my first week on the weightwatchers diet and i have lost nine and a half pounds!! I love the weightwatchers diet as it is so easy to follow and this is the first diet i have felt excited about.

  8. dewey1973 Says:

    Remember, the in the actual formula for points, the fiber benefit is capped. The most fiber can do is subtract 4/5 of a point from the food in question. That’s because only th first four points count. If you eat four slices of high fiber wheat bread (100 cal, 1 fat, 4 fiber) you really need to add the calories, fat, and fiber of the four slices together before you use your formula or slider. You’ll find that what you though was four points is really seven. WW needs to be much more clear about this!

  9. dewey1973 Says:

    Sorry I meant only the first four grams of fiber count: POINTS = (cal/50) + (fat/12) – (min{fiber,4}/5)

  10. Zac Says:

    I stopped including the fiber in my calculations because it didn’t make sense to me. The first four grams lower the points, but what does that mean? It can’t mean 4 grams per serving (according to the nutrtional facts). So 4 grams per instance, I guess. But in what period of time? If I eat a slice of bread with 4 grams of fiber every 15 minutes, do I get to subtract all of them? At some point, it seems like you’d have to stop counting. But I have no idea when that is, so I ignore the fiber entirely.

    I lost about 35 lbs on the WW system in 3 months. That was the first time I had lost weight since I hit puberty. Luckily for me, mainting a certain weight is easy, so even being off the diet for a year means I’ve only gained about 5 pounds of it back.

    I’ve tried to go back on to lose more, but I haven’t been able to stick with it for long enough.

  11. andy Says:

    I believe that when it comes to the points system, it may not be perfect, but it is better than what most americans eat on their own everyday. Americans are fat, and I’m one of them, and its because we haven’t been paying attention to what we eat or how much we eat. Weight watchers helps people pay close attention to the food that they put into their bodies. To me, its not about a diet, but a change in eating haits and lifestyle. I believe weight watchers can help point people in that direction.

    WW makes aware how much of something someone should be eating without limiting it to just fat free, no carbs, lo carbs, stuff. Fact is, i can eat whatever i want, in moderation, as long as i am aware how it will effect my body.

    Furthermore, WW can bring into light all the new “Healthy” food choices resteraunts are now offering that appear to be healthy, but are just as bad for you as the double cheesburger. The point is, people need to be aware of what they eat, and WW does that, all the while allowing people to eat what in the word they want to eat.

    I have lost 40lbs on WW and still eat at Taco Bell and Pizza Hut, but i have learned that i only need two pieces of pizza, instead of 5 or 6. OK i’ll start rambling now. Thanks for reading! Blesings on you!

  12. Ellen Says:

    I think the great thing about the point system is that it takes some of the anxiety out of watching what you eat. It is a simplified method of accounting for what you eat without being overwhelming – especially for those new to diet management. It isn’t intimidating in that it allows you to track what you eat, getting the essetials in, but allows you options so you can feel secure that if you’re still hungry, at least you can still eat xxx. It is a basic approach to the whole concept of dietary “trade offs”.

  13. Stacy Says:

    Hello- I agree with everyone who posted comments about fiber making points lower, but I think everyone is focusing on the wrong thing. The point of WW is to teach healthy eating habits, not to try and manipulate the system to eat more food that you really don’t need. Bottom line, all the calories and fat grams add up over the course of a day. WW also says that anything other than veggies counts as at least one point. I have actually sat in a meeting where this was brought up and the leader gave us an example using carrots. If you eat enough carrots, the points would add up and not be zero anymore, but most people aren’t going to eat 5 bags of carrots in a day. This example just proves the point that it’s not just about calories, fat, & fiber, it’s about portion control, which a lot of people in the U.S. have a problem with! Good Luck everyone!

  14. Jill Says:

    Well, the points system may not work for you, but I lost 55 pounds in 5 months while on Weight Watchers! You just have to stick to it, the points, the exercise, the meetings, everything. It WILL come off! Quit making excuses and just DO It!

  15. CJG Says:

    Is anyone concerned that the WW food nutrition infomation is not accurate. The WW ice cream cones show that a seving size has 4 grams of fiber. Anyone know how the fiber got in ice cream? 4 grams is alot.

  16. Karen Says:

    I was on WW a few years back and lost about 20 pounds. I’m not really that much overweight – and honestly nothing that getting off my butt probably wouldn’t solve……but what I noticed, is that WW points make me painfully aware what the saganaki is gonna cost me and why I will usually choose a salad over that just because I know the “number” alloted to it. It’s still allowing me to make the choice, and because of that, I usually but not always make the better one.

    The exercise is key too (I’m getting back into it this week). And even better if you DON’T give yourself extra points for it and just use it if that special occasion comes up. It never made sense to me that you exercise hard for 5 points and then ruin it with something.

    I think the awareness is key. And if disciplined,(key words) that and exercise is all you need.

  17. TCOAN Says:

    The fiber in the ice cream cone is likely in the cone itself.

  18. Amy Says:

    Andy, I totally agree with you. Americans are fat and I too am one of them. Although WW may be ‘just another plan’ to lose weight, it has helped me tremendously. This is my 2nd week on it and I’ve lost 8 lbs… most of that is probably just water weight but at least it’s a start. Had I not been commited to the idea, I’d probably been eating crap as usual. First and foremost, whatever diet/food plan you are on, you have to make the choice to stay focused and committed to it, or it simply won’t work. I’m trying as hard as I can right now.. Good for all of you that posted as well…. we can do this!!!

  19. Susan Says:

    Can you switch between points and core plan? I’m thinking about joining the online version.

  20. Dawn Says:

    Yes, you can switch between points and core, but be sure that you are disciplined enough to eat ONLY the allowed core foods – otherwise core will not work for you. You don’t need to switch to join the online version – not sure if that is why you wanted to switch? And be prepared to spend a lot of time trying to figure out their website – I found it a huge pain.

  21. Marianne Appel Says:

    Thank you for y our comments.

  22. KIMBERLY Says:

    You know what I’ve found to be true. People will complain about any and everything. If a program doesn’t work for you, find another one. My goodness, stop whinning, and acting like three year old’s.

    No wonder some of the kid’s are like they are, they have parent’s who act worse than they do. Some of you complain if it’s too hot outside, put on a hat, or go back in doors.

    For peak sake’s, grow up! WW has worked for me, and WW will work for you, if you work the plan.

  23. Brooklyn Says:

    How many glasses of water do I have to drink on the WW Points plan a day???

  24. Hayley Says:

    when i read this it made me worry about the diet i am on, but to be honest it is working well for me and i am finding it easy to follow. i think it must work a bit differently in other countries as in the point system because we work on sat. fat and kcals! i understand wat u mean and i think u have made some gd points lol

  25. Luanne Says:

    When I realized how many points were in a Cinnabon (regular size), suddenly they were not THAT good and I haven’t had one in 5 years. That is a good thing!!

  26. Msteechur Says:

    Is WWers perfect? No. But I lost and have maintained a loss of over 100 pounds for 5 years now. The point system is great when you start. It’s much easier to do calculations in your head using points than it is using calories.

    “I have 25 points. This is 2, that’s 1, and this is 2 so that means I now have 20 points.”

    …is much easier than

    “I can eat 1200 calories. This is 127, that’s 43, and that’s 96 so now I have…okay, let me find a calculator…OH FORGET IT!”

    Is it “better” to count calories? Probably, but many people find it difficult and tedious. In my case I counted points for 3.5 years and then, as I changed from “exerciser” to “athlete” (I’ve run 7 marathons in the last 2.5 years) I found I needed a more accurate accounting system. So I started journaling on a site that keeps track of calories, fat, protein, carbs, and vitamins, as well as more accurate values for activities.

    But the tenets of Weight Watchers, I still follow completely (and am still a paying online member, as online members don’t get “Lifetime” breaks). I still journal every day, get in no less than five fruits and veggies, take in my calcium, drink plenty of water, and exercise daily. Weight Watchers provided a transition from “flabulous” to “fabulous” that was exactly what I, and many others, have needed to make a true lifestyle change.

  27. perrfektlyfkawed Says:

    Hey all!

    Today is the day of my first meeting. I’m 20 years old, I’m 5’2″ and 150 lbs. After yo-yo dieting and phentermine I lost 31 lbs from the 181 that I was before. I did weight watchers years ago, and I think this is the next step to finally shedding my last 30lbs. I wish you all the best of luck and I will keep you posted on my success!


  28. flaminga Says:

    One thing I haven’t seen anyone comment on is that Weight Watchers endorses a program that is too low in calories. Some members are at 18 points per day. That translates into 900 calories a day. I can’t think of any physician who thinks that’s okay unless you’re being closely monitored in a medical facility. I can’t believe there hasn’t been more attention to this issue.

  29. Megan Says:

    I have never tried WW before but my grandmother has been on it for as long as I can remember.

    Last week I surpassed the weight I promised I would never get to and decided I have to do something about it. I can’t even get my favorite jeans past my thighs anymore…very depressing.

    I have not attended a meeting yet but have begun tracking what I eat using the points system. For my weight I should be eating 24 points worth of food a day. My only concern is that this seems like a lot of food! I am making healthier choices so maybe this is what will lead me to the weight loss. I am also trying to spread my food out across the day equally.

    My question: Is it worth buying the WW brand items at the grocery store? Is the only benefit of these the ease of counting the points? They just seem quite expensive.

  30. Mindy Says:

    My question is this. Once you lose all the weight you want or need to lose….do you stay on the points system? I mean if you keep eating in your points wont you just keep losing?

  31. Vince Says:

    Yes, you can stay on the system once you’re at your target weight. But the amount of points you’re permitted will go up, since you’re trying to maintain, rather than lose.

  32. James Says:

    I was on weight watchers and calculated that I was to be a 30 points….i lost 3 pounds a week for 3 weeks…the 4th week I overate past my points a little and didnt lose weight….and when i went in the look at my info a determined that my points were calculated wrong and that i was suppose to be at 37 points….

    I told them Id rather not up it that much…but they insisted…and so I changed to 37 points and gained all of my weight back and a few pounds extra.

    I think the point system is based off of the body fat percentage of the average person at your height and age and gender…but I have atleast 10-15 more pounds of muscle than the average person left over from my body building days…so I think the formula assumes that all my extra weight is fat when some of it is not…

    There is no way the formula for point calculation can be correct for everyone.

    What should i do?

  33. christine mcgroder Says:

    go back to 30 points

  34. anne Says:

    I’ve only been on WW for a week but I am big into eating fruit and vegetables (and avoid pre-packaged junk food- especially Splenda). One day I decided to track both my points and my calories. I reached my WW goal of 20 points but I only ate 855 calories. That’s not nearly enough! Not even for a petite woman with 14 lbs to lose. I even did an aerobic workout that day! This made me wonder if I would be much better off counting my calories.

  35. Jade Says:

    WW DOES work!! I lost 50 lbs. on it. Many have referred to it as a diet which it is not…………it is a lifestyle change. I’ve never felt better.

  36. Susan Says:

    I am thinking about joining weight watchers. I am very muscular for a woman and think that they need to make up for that someway in the goal section. Has anyone else had that problem?

  37. Cynthia Says:

    WW does work! I lost over 80 lbs on it and have continued counting points, so have maintained the weight loss for 10 months.

    The new WW has a points quiz to figure out daily point needs based on height, level of sedentary work, current weight, etc. If you know that you have more muscle and that WW is counting that in your weight, then just fudge around with the quiz answers and get an appropriate point allowance. I had to do that so that I didn’t keep losing weight on the original maintenance level of points they gave me. Please remember, the WW point formula is not so simple that you can say 18 points for certain equals 900 calories – NOT! But if your points are too low and you are losing weight too fast, then re-do the points quiz or even just set your own point level (it’s an option, though it’s not easy to get to it).

    Goal weight setting is personal and you can use the generous range of weight for your height and age. If you have more muscle, then set your goal at the high end of the range…

    And for goodness sake, eat ALL your allotted and earned points (activity points). Plus, mix it up with the extra flexible weekly points — keep your metabolism guessing and don’t eat the exact same points every day! You don’t want the metabolism to slow down…

    The system, imperfect as it is, can work, especially if you individualize it to fit your needs. But don’t play the system either – be honest in everything you can be – except maybe their points quiz (e.g., add all pieces of bread together and let the formula cap the fiber, even if you eat your bread in single servings 15 minutes apart).

  38. Connie Says:

    I’ve eaten the WW breads and english muffins, and they are very tasty, and only 1 point for a serving. The sandwich buns are very good too, at 2 points. Much better than many of the low cal breads out there, and higher in fiber, without sacrificing taste. I only get 20 points a day, so for me, it’s worth the money to enjoy these products for 1 or 2 points.

  39. Tara Says:

    I have been on Weight watchers for 23 weeks now and I have lost 40 lbs. I have met my goal weight and I now attend the meetings for free! I have never tried to lose weight before and I found it very easy with weight watchers. I enjoy getting up early and going to my meeting each week.

    I was noticing some of the comments already posted… If you seriously think adding fiber to ice cream is going to help you lose weight,….How stupid! Yes you CAN eat whatever you want, but you want to lose weight, right? Weight watchers taught me something my parents did not… HOW to eat. If you subscribe to the etools (online version) you get these little happy faces when you drink all of your water, eat all of your fruits and veggies, have your vitamin, your healthy oils, and your activities for the day. Those little happy faces lost my 40lbs for me.

    I love it I love it I love it. I have been on the points system the whole time, and I have skipped a few weeks.. .not tracking. I gained during those weeks usually. I cant get used to the idea of Core though. Just not for me.

  40. Jessica Says:

    I just recently joined weight watchers and I am now in my second week. The first weigh-in after joining I had gained one pound. I was pretty surprised, because I counted all my points, measured out my food (1 cup of cereal with 1/2 cup for milk is a completely different portion size than what I thought it would be), and drank all of my water (I’m a huge water drinker anyway because the medications I’m on dehydrate me). I ate my fruits and veggies, and I didn’t eat all of my extra points. In fact, I ate only 6 of the extra points for the week over the course of a couple of days.

    Despite the gain of a pound, I am not disheartened, especially after reading a lot of the comments on this forum. What I’ve come to conclude is that Weight Watchers is not for everyone, and no plan ever is. As customizable as the points program is, people are correct when they state it is not perfect. All people are different, and this weight loss program may not be for everyone. However, just because the points system itself isn’t perfect doesn’t mean the plan won’t work. The points are just a part of the whole program, and what it really does is show you portion control and healthier eating habits. The main reason Weight Watchers work is because of the moral support you gain in going to the meetings and becoming part of the online community. The system also makes you accountable by getting on a scale every week. You know that if you gain one week, you’re going to work that much harder to lose the next.

    I love the meeting motto: Talk about what works; Laugh about what doesn’t. This is a good outlook to have, because it’s telling you right there that not everything is going to work for you.

    Personally, I’m going to stick with the plan, and hope that the first week was a fluke. I’m not discouraged, just more determined.

  41. Rees2100 Says:

    Jessica, perhaps it was the medication that made you keep/gain weight?

  42. MELISSA Says:


  43. margaret Says:

    Is it ok to start out by just using the frozen WW foods to count points? My husband and I are thinking of doing this but right now our schedule is so busy. I was thinking at least its a start until I become more familiar with the program and can start fixing my own meals. Any suggestions?

  44. Ron Castia Says:

    I’ll vouch for WW. I am a competitive cyclist, semi-pro on the mountain bike and I used WW to bring my racing weight down to where I could actually compete in hilly races. 10th at Mt. Hamilton RR in 2004. I did have to modify my daily points allowance to account for my training workouts, which were always intense to very intense by WW scale. I still use the system today to keep my weight in check and at a competitive level. BTW: I do need to modify my daily points allowance but cannot seem to find any charts or calculators. I am currently 138 lbs, looking to get down to 130. I am 5′ 5″. Any info you have would be great.


    Thanks, Ron

  45. Cathy Says:

    I, too, will vouch for Weight Watchers. They are constantly improving the program. I know people that don’t “trust” it and try to change it to work for them and you know what? They don’t lose weight.

    WW works. Period. If you follow the program, you will lose weight. The way it is designed rewards you for choosing lots of vegetables, staying low to moderate fat, and exercising – you get to eat more if you exercise!

    I did WW without joining a few years ago and was highly successful, but I gained it all back – because of no follow up!

    THIS TIME – I have joined – my goal for WW (other than the obvious!) is “FREE” – I want to be able to go for the rest of my life for free. Once you hit your goal weight, you don’t have to pay any longer – you show up once a month – any time that month – and if you are within five pounds of your goal, the meeting is free.

    I love WW. It’s the best program I have found; trust me, I’ve been dieting my whole life. Went from baby fat to people fat.

    Cathy in Maine

    PS to Ron: There is a whole formula for figuring out your points target that takes many things into account – your age, sex, weight, level of daily activity, etc. – join WW online and get all the information. Even if you just join for a month, it would be worth it to get all the latest info – WW has changed a lot over the years, even within the last four.

  46. Chris Says:

    I think any diet will work. Any diet where you’re not snarfing oreos and doritos will work. And let’s face it, most overweight people are snarfing junk and not moving. You can not “trust” any diet, but hey, any diet is better than NO diet!

  47. Cathy Says:

    I resent your comment, “Most overweight people are snarfing junk and not moving” – obviously you’ve never had to deal with a serious weight problem or tried to understand what someone who IS dealing with it is going through.

    I do NOT eat junk at all and I’ve always exercised. My diet hasn’t changed a lot on WW except I eat less and exercise more. The main thing that many overweight people need to learn to do is portion control.

    Your comment was insensitive and displays ignorance. I certainly hope you don’t say that to people trying to lose weight.

  48. Rachel Says:

    I’ve tried counting calories and extreme exercise and Never lasted very long because I would feel hungry all the time.

    I don’t know why WW’s works for me….maybe because it just seems easier or maybe it feels more like a game to me. If I’m hungry I eat but I try and choose the lowest point, most satisfying foods. It’s like having a daily allowance and trying to make it stretch as far as possible. Plus you have a weekly “bonus” that I use on special occasions if I want.

    All I know is that I have been on this program for almost 5 months and the longer I stay on it the easier it gets and the less deprived I feel. It has taught me to control my portions and fill up on healthy foods. I’m down 43 lbs so far and actually feel like I can sustain a healthy lifestyle.

  49. meghan Says:

    I am currently a nursing major and am completely astonished that you think weight watchers weighs to heavily on fiber. that is what you are taught all through nutrition classes that fiber is a VERY important part of a persons diet and helps keep their bodies healthy. it is also taught that it is very important in weight loss, so i think weight watchers is right on in encouraging more fiber.

  50. Jennifer Says:

    I am currently on the weight watchers plan. I have lost a total of 90 pounds (308 pounds to 218 pounds) over a time period of almost two years. You may be accurate in finding the inconsistencies in the points values; however, this program assists individuals in making better choices. I can still eat my favorite foods, chinese, italian, thai, and a fast food hamburger. But for me it has been a great mechanism to decide what entrees are better for me to eat, and what is a real portion size. For example, instead of getting General Tso’s chicken, I order chicken and broccoli. Instead of getting two Big Macs, I order a kid’s cheeseburger. I understand your concern with the program, but for those of us that are or were morbidly obese and nothing else work(s,ed), it is a great weight loss guideline.

  51. Chris Says:

    Fiber is not just a substance that helps keep us regular. The reason we are finding fiber is more important is how it helps us process sugars. Fiber keeps our blood sugar from soaring and dropping drastically. This helps the body keep an even blood sugar level, which helps us lose weight, not suffer from cravings as often. If you eat a candy bar, your blood sugar soars, then drops and you have a low, which also triggers fat storage. If you have fiber with that sugar, your body breaks down the sugars much slower. It lowers the “glycemic index”. Most low-carb diets incorporate fiber to lower glycemic index. So it’s not just wwatchers that is utilizing this. It’s Atkins, South Beach…

  52. Soli Says:

    After having a baby last December, I rejoined WW two weeks ago. So far I have lost 7.8 lbs. I have done ww before and it has been something that has worked for me; however, it is by no means a miricle diet. I actually don’t consider it to be a diet at all, I find that I eat more when I’m on the flex plan than when I’m not. The point is that we all know what helps us lose weight and/or maintain a healthy weight and ww just helps us keep those things in perspective. I find it far easier to keep track of points vs. calories. That has helped me to make better choices in the foods I consume. The meetings provide a wealth of information and support. And encouraging eating a well rounded diet and incorporating exercise into a daily routing is obviously golden. WW is a business so of course they will promote their own line of frozen foods. I stay away from them for the most part because of the sodium content. The bottom line is that ww is a helpful way to lose weight through the same things that have always worked: Diet & Exercise.

    Good luck to everyone 🙂

  53. Michele Says:

    Hello, all. Enjoyed reading all of your comments. Have any of you had an issue with your WW leader? I stopped going to the meetings altogether (though I still do WW and am still losing) because of my leader. She is practically militant in her insistance that ALL adult family members in the household follow the WW plan. My hubby eats a lot of sweets and a lot of starches, but is NOT unhealthy nor overweight (he is one of the “lucky ones” who can eat what they want and not gain). He absolutely would never consider changing his eating habits unless his health began to fail. Cooking and baking for him is my favorite hobby (I’m a wanna-be gourmet) and eating my cooking is his favorite hobby, so to take that away would diminish our happiness. During some meeting discussions on the subject of our spouses’ eating habits, I answered as I did here in this blog and was very embarrassed by her comments. “Your husband MUST support you in this way” and “He MUST follow the WW plan in order for you to be successful”. This happened on more than one occasion. Our community is very small, and there is no other WW meeting place in the county, so going to another place is out of the question. To continue at this facility with this leader would lead to a weekly confrontation and I want this to be a positive experience, not a negative one.

    Don’t the WW people train their leaders to be less harsh and demanding? What is her deal? Or is it me?

  54. SARAH Says:

    I’ve been doing WW for 4 1/2 weeks. I’ve lost 9 pounds, which of course is better than nothing, but even with strict following of my points I can’t hit that 10 pound mark. I’ve bounced between the 8-9 pound loss for a week and a half. Any suggestions on how to get past that hump?

  55. Marty Says:

    WW. works for me.. I started it Oct 6th it is now Nov 8th and I have lost 14 pounds. I like knowing I can have anything as long as I count it. I watch calories too. I think any method of losing weight as long as it is healthy is good. After all it get the weight off blood pressure down along with other health benifits.

  56. Kate Says:

    Hi my name is Kate and I’m 21. I am 100 lbs overweight! I am starting my meetings tonight and I’m very excited! Reading all of your postings incouraged me even more to wanting to do this program! congrats to all that have lost weight!! Keep up the good work!!!

  57. jennifer Says:

    Does anyone have the OLD weight watchers daily points allowances chart? I thnik this new one allows me to eat too much

  58. Tammy Says:

    It works and it is much healthier than doing more of the same. Is it perfect for everyone? Maybe not. But it is a step in the right direction. As far as the fiber not canceling out the fat? No one says it does. But the American Cancer Society seems to think it helps prevent many types of cancer. I lost all the desired weight using the program. It WORKS!!!!! bottom line. If you stay with it you keep it off. I have also have had numerous friends who have had success with the program. Give it a try.

  59. Emily Says:

    The last WW had point ranges — 18-23 points per day if under 150 pounds, then up 4 points (i.e., 22-27) per weight range, which were the same as they are now. The version before that was 18-25 points for 150 pounds or under, but I don’t know how it shifted for higher weights. These plans did not have flexpoints like they do now, but you could bank points within the same week. So say I was on 18-23 a day, and only ate 20 one day, then I could save those 3 points for later in the week. I lost my weight very easily on that program. When I needed to lose again a few years later, I turned to Core, which was great for me. Now that I’m breastfeeding and I can’t eat dairy since my daughter is allergic, I’m back to points — couldn’t handle Core without my nonfat lattes! Good luck! WW definitely works if you commit, exercise, and don’t cheat the system.

  60. Chris Says:

    I like the program alot. It’s easy to use as long as you know basic math. Through use of it and regular exercise, I’ve actually lost 120 pounds. I’m not planning to lose any more though. If there is a healthy way to pack on muscle though I’m all ears. i could use some in my Glutes, Abs, Calves, and thighs

  61. Virginia Says:

    In response to Chris of Dec 4/07… I restarted WW in Oct of this year, then began a low-impact aerobics class in early Nov. We have 2 sessions a week. I missed only one. We work on cardio with marching on the spot, side stepping, raising and lowering arms, squats, lunges, taekwondo-type kicks (mine are very low!) and punches, (ie. constant movement), various ab crunches and gentle stretches at the end to wind down – that sort of thing. I have lost 3 inches off my thighs and waist, and 2 inches of my bustline, and my thighs and calves are hard now. I would recommend trying to find some kind of class like that and it should help you.

  62. Lenny Says:

    Look, we all can see that we can pick apart ANY “plan,” “System,” “diet” or whatever you want to call it. The bottom line is: what we call can do to lose weight, stay healthy and fit. I have been doing WW Flex points since late May 2007 and have lost 50 lbs (192 – 142). In addition to my weight loss, I have lowered my bad cholesterol, raised my good cholesterol and lowered my blood pressure too.

    If anything, WW teaches LIFESTYLE changes, counting points is only one small part of the program.

    I’ve tried other “diets” like atkins, south beach and the like. They are temporary. ALL diets are temporary.

    It’s about LIFESTYLE changes and MAINTAINING lifestyle changes. WW provides the tools and support for ACHIEVING success in their program. I think it is a homerun. I eat better, feel better (look better too). My self-esteen is higher and have some good health benefits too.

    Good program, would recommend it to anyone.

    We are not scientists, just everyday people who want get fit and stay fit. WW is a SIMPLE and IDEAL program to follow.

  63. Kellie Says:

    Watch out for the WW frozen meals. I tried WW and ate a frozen meal for lunch everyday. I gained 7 pounds in less than 2 weeks and quit the program. After some research, I realized that there was more than half my daily sodium needs in one meal. I was swelling and retaining water. I’m trying WW again without their meals.

  64. lauraf Says:

    I have been on WW for about 3 weeks now and am very impressed with the program. I have lost almost 14 pounds and this is the first time in 6 years that I have been able to do this. I think that what WW shows us is the right portion control that us Americans are so easily forgetting.I was amazed and horrifided at what my family was eating. We only ate out fast food maybe once a week BUT one meal can be as much as 1700 calories. That was crazy. I have since been looking at what everyone in our house eats and even though my kids are not on WW I am really a stikler for 1or 2 cookies over 4 or 5. I plan on sticking with my lifestyle change. I don’t see this as a diet and I am just doing this by watching points nothing else. I think saying that this is a diet is maybe what people have the issue with. Its portion control and healthy choices nothing else. And even with the WW frozen meals if you eat one every day it’s no better for you that goinf to Burger King or and other fast food place because of all the other added junk. Maybe make extra and freeze it and use that instead of eating frozen dinners.Good Luck to everyone:)

  65. Alicia Says:

    I have been on ww for over a year now and I have lost 47lbs. This does work is all I can say. It is not a diet it is a commitment to get healthy. I am sure there are times when the slider may not be 100% accurate but you know, and that is what works for me. Good luck to all new starters. I have 50 lbs to go and I know this will get me there:)

    Alicia Ohio

  66. Jamie Says:

    You know, there are many things to be said about Weight Watchers. First off, how long have they been around? They must be doing something right.

    My mom does Nutrisystem – I can’t stand the stuff. But it works for her. I prefer WW because I am in control of my own destiny, my own portions. I’m not going to learn how to change my life by eating out of a cardboard box pantry entree. I’m not willing to spend hundreds of dollars a month on “their food” – that doesn’t teach me anything.

    The trick is to do it right. Losing it fast, or not learning from mistakes only leads to gaining it right back.

    Anybody truly committed would see that whatever plan works, works. Mostly it’s the person, and what they have decided to do themselves, how motivated they are, their support network and their improving self-image.

    Does WW work? Depends entirely upon YOU. It’s also the longest standing weight loss company/franchise, so they must know something about what they are doing.

  67. Daphne Says:

    My daughter and I started WW today. I have been eating Salmon and salad and fruit and am just making my 21 points, if not going over. She is eating bread, peanut butter, Popcorn, turkey on a roll, with point to spare. Isn’t there a Carbohydrate limit? I know there used to be. Please advise

  68. Laura Moncur Says:


    Weight loss is about calories in and calories out. Because you are both eating the same amount of calories, you should lose weight.

    Healthy eating however is about a good balance between carbohydrates and protein. That’s where the WW Healthy Habits come in.

  69. Mercy Says:

    After being on the program for about 4 months, I have to say that it has completely changed the way I think about what I am putting into my body and the lack of portion control that I used to have. I have lost 20 pounds from 160 to 140 and am just 10 pounds away from my goal weight. I would highly recommend joining Weight Watchers if you can commit to sticking to the plan and working out a few times a week.

  70. Mimi Says:

    I agree with Dawn, the WW website is a real pain. I’m on the Flex Plan, but I was curious about the Core Plan and didn’t want to go diging through my stuff to find the literature. But I ended up having to Google “Weight Watchers core food” to find the list! I guess they must be protective of their information.

    That said, I think it’s important to realize that no company – no matter how good their intentions – is going to give away all their secrets for free to the general public. That’s just the way US businesses work.

    Also, the human brain is not wired to go around counting everything the person eats. What it IS wired to do is to get the human to work hard physically and then eat any and all available food. Weight Watchers is simply trying to get people to rewire their thinking, to create accountability and awareness of what they consume every day.

    Awareness and physical activity are the keys to getting your body back to its more natural state. The brain just isn’t geared to do this. That’s why we need things like the Points system.

  71. Mark Says:

    I’m on WW for the second time. First go around was early 2007 and I lost 30 pounds. I maintained the loss but, need to loose much more so, I started again. I’m having a hard time eating all of my points. I’m at the max level of 44 points and I eat all day. Oatmeal, fruit, veggies, lean protein, etc. but, still have points at the end of the day.

    Does anyone else have this problem? Am I going to slow my progress if I elect to cut my point levels on my own?


  72. Diana Says:

    Hi Mark,

    This is just my opinion as a Weight Watchers Lifetime member, and a NASM CPT: I fervently believe that it is CRITICAL to eat every last point which Weight Watchers has outlined for you. Weight Watchers is based on very solid scientific evidence. I would be interested to know if you’re 1) crossing off all of your boxes, and 2) considering how many points can be used by taking in much more oil.

    I hope that you respond, and I hope that this has helped!

    With friendship,


  73. Diana Says:

    In response to Jamie’s entry of 1-3-08:

    “I totally agree, Sista!!!”

    With loving friendship,


  74. Kelly Says:

    Regarding the points vs. calories debate…..I’ve been a calorie counter for years. My problem is the accountability, so I joined WW. I was worried that the points system wouldn’t allow an accurate amount of calories for me. So I kept track of both…it turns out that the points are the right amount of calories, too.

  75. Rosemarie Says:

    I have recently rejoined WW after a five year absence. I paid $300 in advance for 6 months of meetings, and then found out that I’d have to pay more to access all the information on the website.

    I must admit, I am disappointed that the cost of weekly meetings has increased so much, and that the corporation is gouging paid members more by charging for full access to the website. I think I should be able to see anything on the website simply by registering with my member number.

    While the plan works for me (as long as I stick to it!), I think WW has become another huge corporation, making millions of dollars (and I’d like to know if they contribute to any food aid programs, in Africa or other parts of the world … one would think, with all their millions, they’d want to be seen as being benevolent in some way).

    I’ll continue to attend the weekly meetings until my prepaid membership is used up, but after that, no more. I can find everything I need online, without enriching this corporation.

  76. Tabitha Says:

    I joined WW a week ago. I AM IN LOVE! I lost 3 lbs which I have never done before. WW causes you to PAY ATTENTION to what you eat. It simpifies weight loss for me. I’m grateful and Super excited. I actually see myself meeting my goal weight!

  77. Veronica Says:

    My 13 year old daughter is currently on WW and is in the middle of her 2nd week. She lost 4.5 pds her first week and was totally excited. It was under her doctors advise that she started WW. She had originally put my daughter on a 1500 calorie intake and it was just too hard for me to count her calories. I have 3 other children and a husband who do not have to lose weight and it wasn’t fair to her to have to eat differently from the rest of the family. On the WW plan we all eat the same thing. She just eats different portions and more of the vegetables. It is easier for her to count points than to add up calories when she is away from home and it is alot easier for me to count points on my recipes than it is for me to establish her calorie intake. She has 29 points on WW and often times we have a hard time reaching 29 points. I have alotted her 3 snack per day to reach it. She is enjoying knowing that everything she eats is helping her get down to a healthy weight and thats really all that is important to me. So, I don’t really care how WW comes up with the point system. Im just really glad they did!!

  78. Courtney Foster Says:

    Another issue with the WW point system is that it does not consider at all the TYPE of fat consumed. According to WW mayonnaise is akin to toxic waste. In fact, regular Kraft® mayonnaise has 10g of fat per serving, but 6g of that is polyunsaturated (the good stuff) and another 2.5 is monounsaturated (better than saturated, but not as good as poly), and only 1.5 g is saturated fat.

    It can hardly be claimed that mayonnaise is “good” for you, but we actually require fat in our diet and polyunsaturated fat is exactly the kind we need.

    Weight Watchers pays not a lick of attention to this detail.

  79. wendy Says:

    does any have a list of the food that you can eat along with the points system

  80. wayne Says:

    Wendy, you can eat any food you want as long as you stay within your daily points budget (20-40ish).

    There are several good “diet unit” calculators out there to help you with figuring that part out.

    WW is great for me, because I think its rewarding to make smart choices.

    Some people say journaling is key, I don’t journal anything, I keep track in my head and discard at the end of the day (unless I fail to lose/maintain weight then I may write it down for a week).

    Exercise is great, you get to eat more food. Its also great for other reasons, but hey, if you get to have an ice cream at the end of the day ’cause you did 30 min on the treadmill, cool!

    For me weighing in is my KEY. I do it myself, on Fridays before the weekend splurge of my bonus points. When I dont weigh in regularly, I find that oops I gained 15-20 lbs, which is a lot harder to get off than 2 lbs.

    There are a couple of things I keep in mind about this or any other program:

    1 is that many of the participants are Nazis of their own little corner of the universe, ignore them.

    2 you aren’t in kindergarten, make smart choices that work for you, dont fiber cap popcorn because its a natural food if you want but fiber cap icecream or other complex recipes etc.

    My way works for me, and you way should work for you. There is no cookie cutter system or plan that will work for every single person on the planet.

    It’s a set of guidelines, not an infallible diet plan inspired by God. Its been revised a dozen or so times over the years as things change.

    Watch Survivorman or Man Vs Wild… once you actually see what we are “supposed to do” to get food, like we did for a 100,000 years, you’ll see why lattes and drive thru are really really bad for us.

  81. Peter Says:

    WW does distinguish between fats. Part of the healthy guidelines is getting in your healthy oils–oils that are high in monounsaturated & polyunsaturated fats. I use olive, canola, and safflower oils. People complain that these oils have POINTS. But everything has POINTS. Get over it.

    I’ve lost about 50 pounds, and I’ve recently acieved lifetime status. WW isn’t for everyone If they are healthy, then they don’t need WW. I’ve got 2 friends who were real college jocks (one had a wrestling scholarship), and so he isn’t the type to need to learn how to eat, how to exercise, or how to stay fit. He’s also one of my biggest supporters. I’ve noticed that most people, when they belittle WW, could stand to lose weight themselves.

  82. Mark Says:

    I’ve been doing WW now for 3 months and have lost 34lbs. As far as the points and the fiber and all that, I’m not concerend about how they obtain the value as much as I now eat healthy all the time. I also dont think its just counting points for the reason that WW works. 1, you keep track of “everything” you consume, including 2 or 3 liters or more of water a day – how much dairy, how much “good fat” how many fruits and veggies and there is a specific amount of each of everything that you put in your mouth.

    The other reason WW works is the meetings, especially when you have a leader that is motivational. I also have a buddy that I go to the meetings with which is also a HUGE help. The food is a huge part of the program, but the support network that it builds is much more benificial to me than what I am eating.

    I’ve tried every fad diet out there, and they work, “until” you go back to eating “normally”. What is nice about it is getting to see everyone else every week and to get that emotional encouragement.

    Kudos to WW for having a proven system of all around healthy habits, not just the food especially since its not a “diet”, its a lifestyle change.

  83. Tammy Says:

    I did Weight Watchers while living in England and they actually do not count fiber when figuring points and they only include saturated fat in the equation. It seemed to work!!!

  84. Sue Says:


    Just started WW. Question: exactly how does the exercise points work? If I exercies – say 45 min to 1 1/2 hrs in a day, can I eat another point? Or is that just that much sooner I’ll lose pounds?

  85. Pam Says:

    Sue (May 4, 08), You may earn points based on your weight and how long and intense your workout is. For example, a 350lbs person can work out at a moderate intensity level for 45 minutes and earn 5 extra points whereas a person who weighs 150lbs can do the same and only earn 2 extra points.

  86. Betty Says:

    In the UK Weight Watchers doesn’t take fibre into account in working out points value, just calories and fat. The programme works on both continents though!

  87. winterleaver Says:

    I’ve lost over 83lbs on WW in 1 year. It’s all about being smart with the WW program. Don’t bend the rules, come one people… You all know better than that! WW teached great eating habits. I Think everyone should know a little bit about how WW works. WW allows such a huge amount of flexibility, you can fit it into any life style. But you have to WANT to lose the weight, you have to want it more than anything. No program will work unless you want it to.

  88. Tara Says:

    I think the point system is great to start getting you to realized that every bite you eat matters and to think about those bites instead of just sitting down and engulfing a whole bag of chips or eating 3 bowls of cereal. I think once you get that down then you can fine tune and start focusing more on calories. I have lost weight using the points b/c it makes you eat less (less calories) and I have learned portion control. Points ROCK!!!

  89. LadyBug626 Says:

    I’m not on the WW program, but I like the points structure and use that to make decisions about what to eat.

    I agree that the points system is slightly flawed, but don’t underestimate the importance of fiber & other good ingredients. The key is losing weight via reducing calories, but stress should also be put on the ingredients of the food which we are eating. My problem with alot of the low-calorie foods is they consists of too many substitute ingredients & chemicals and fewer natural ingredients. You may be losing weight, but you don’t want to be on the road to other health problems.

  90. Rose C. Says:

    The meetings I’ve tried have been a toal joke, a total waste of time and money. Have you noticed how many of us have been with WW more than once, meaning we all quit at some point, them come back? They count on that. I tried it again recently, and it was clear that the meetings were a joke, they just wanted to sell products and more gimmicks. Even the lady who ran the big center I went to said that more people were successful in the “old days” when you counted protein, fruits, etc. I have tried to find some actual statistics on people who lost or didn’t on the program, but haven’t been able to find any. I suspect it’s very low. I found absolutely no “community support” at meetings. All the nutritional info you need, you can find on the internet. Save your money, don’t waste it on WW!!

  91. sarah Says:

    Re: The WW plan has too few calories–If you eat high fat foods, then you get less points. If you eat high fiber foods with low fat, then you get more bang for your points–a slice of bread can be 3 points, for example, or two slice for one point, depending on fat, calories and fiber.

    Also, if you eat vegetables, chances are you’re consuming more “uncounted” calories there. I don’t usually count a big salad for lunch that is pure greens.

    A “point” could be anywhere from 25 to 100 calories, it just depends on the fat and fiber.

    I suppose if a person still just ate junky food, then they may not get enough calories, but it’s still limiting portions.

    I agree with other posters who mentioned that WW is all about teaching you to make better food choices, ones that are low fat and higher fiber–which is a good thing. If you figure sometimes you eat junk for which you “pay” a point for 25 calories, and sometimes you eat something low fat and high fiber and pay a point for 100 calories, it all weighs out in the end. har har.

  92. nadja Says:

    I’m loosely following the WW flex plan – – too cheap to join WW. I’ve found daily journaling and portion control is the key. I feel that Americans, in general, just eat too much food. I’ve lost about 10 pounds so far in about 9 weeks, and I’m sure I’m not using the points the way they were supposed to be used; however, as I said, it is portion control and the daily food log that is really working for me. For things that I consider to be “sinful,” I just have a taste, or three small bites. I guess that is mindful eating. I have a long term commitment to this process, plus I exercise about 5 times a week, and I will be patient with myself.

  93. nat Says:

    I pretty much like WW, don’t have the discipline for the kind of calorie-counting I need so this is helpful for the 20 pounds I want to lose.

    What gives me pause, though, is the fact that at my At Work meetings, I may pay for multiple “courses” (runs, semesters, whatever — groups of months) that all use the same pamphlets in the same order, but the leader won’t replace ones in subsequent courses that I lost from the first course. Why? Shouldn’t I get a discount if I don’t get replacement pamphlets that I’ve obviously re-paid for?

    I also specifically asked about the effects of artificial sweeteners — I’d heard they cause cravings — and the topic was quickly changed by the leader. Huh? I thought this would be important for people to consider.

    My leader must have to purchase her pamphlets and must also see a commission on her sales of foods, otherwise I couldn’t imagine why this would be the case.

    Again, the program is good (I forgive the twice-counted fats), but I won’t spend any more money with WW after about $300 for two courses sans internet tools access. I now find everything I need online for free. They’re getting a bit money-grubbing.

  94. Jenna Says:

    I have not read ALL of these comments-so forgive me if this has been said, but as far as the fat goes: yes, its being counted twice, but thats good! It helps you stay away from fat if you are “punished” more for it. But the fiber really makes perfect sense. It is not about making fat and calories disappear, its just that youll feel more full if you eat, say, 110 calories 2g fat and 4 g fiber than if you ate something with the same calories and fat and without the fiber. Maybe it wont be so obvious in small amounts, but if you try for fiber in every meal, you are less likely to eat the additional calories. It works, too! Like many have said, it tries to teach you to eat healthy, but also tries to teach you to eat and feel FULL for the least amount possible. You simply could not eat raw veggies all day every day and feel good… Thats what I think. 🙂

  95. Kane Garratt Says:

    I believe that if u eat whatever you wqnt you become skinny

  96. Elizabeth Says:

    I did weight watchers for a while when I was in high school. Since then I’ve lost about 20 lbs and kept it off. Although I can’t do it anymore, by the time I stopped weight watchers I was able to accurately estimate the points in a food without the slider. So it becomes pretty easily to mentally keep up with your points throughout each day. The bad news is that I hit a plateau at the bottom points level and stopped losing weight. (Though if I actually exercised it would have probably helped). The best thing about Weight Watchers is that it helped me learn to make healthier choices, and with the option to eat unhealthy foods every now and then, it helped me adopt a lifestyle that I’ve been able to maintain throughout the years.

  97. Heather Says:

    I’ve lost 22 pounds over the past 3 months by following the WW point system and increasing my workouts. I have a tiny notebook that I keep to track my foods and workouts everyday. I do this all myself (no meetings or membership) and I’m now kicking myself for not starting this earlier in life.

    What I’ve come to realize is that despite the potential glitches everyone has listed here, WW is something you can follow forever. It’s not a gimmick nor does it exclude anything. It forces you to EARN your food… And earning before spending just makes plain sense.

    I used to be plagued by calories, counting, and obsessing over WHAT I was eating. Food was misery (and of course immediate delight). WW is simple because there is no room for guilt. The only time I spend thinking about food now is the 2 minutes it takes each day to write my information down. WW is peace of mind.

  98. OnMyWayTo80pounds Says:

    I started WW last week and it works great for me. I lost 7lbs my first week I am now heading into my second week. I am single and live alone so I don’t have to cook for anyone but me. I eat the frozen meals twice a day usually and then have snacks with the alloted points. On weekends I will cook a breakfast for my self but otherwise I eat a snack for my breakfast points.

    WW is about portion control and it really does make you think about what you eat. For instance I LOVE pizza. I can have 2 slices from a large pizza thin crust and it will be worth 6 points a piece with 1 topping. So I have eaten 12 points for my supper. If I had my usual 7 point meal for lunch (some are less but on avg they are 7) my snack in the morning and then one in the afternoon which is 4 points a piece I have eaten 27 points my max is 29. I have just banked 2 points for the week. So you can eat what you want just proportionally.

    My goal is to get back to 140 lbs which I was my Senior year in High School. I did the dr. atkins diet and lost 30 lbs in 3 weeks but couldn’t keep it off. It’s a quick fix but not long term.

    So for anyone who wants to loose weight if it is on WW or another form of diet then do it. Do what makes you feel good because always remember you “HAVE TO EAT TO LOOSE WEIGHT”

    Good luck!

  99. Steve-O Says:

    Laura –

    I think you’re missing a key point to their methodology. Yes, calories are the crux of both gaining and losing body weight; but eating food strictly for health or weight loss is akin to having sex just to make babies. We eat, first and foremost, to make our hunger go away. Those of us with chronic weight problems have a harder time achieving this.

    Both high-fat and high-fiber foods have the built-in advantage of giving you a sense of fullness quickly and for a long time. The disadvantage lies in the quantity of food required. Generally speaking, high-fat foods contain more calories per ounce than high-fiber foods. They also can contain a host of other undesirable nutrients and additives that we’d all be better off avoiding. By promoting a diet that rewards fiber consumption and shuns fat consumption, WW is not only doing its members a favor from a nutritional/caloric standpoint, but it is also re-training its members to actually find pleasure and satisfaction in healthy eating.

    A happy dieter is a constant dieter. A starving dieter will cheat. Be happy! Eat more fiber!

  100. Karen P. Says:

    Just an FYI, there is an online weight watcher calculator http://www.webmilhouse.com/pointcalc.php .

    You put in the calories, fat, and fiber and the calculator will tell you how many points your food item is.

    The biggest thing that Weight Watchers has helped me do, is be more conscious about what I am eating. I will calculate the points and then decide if eating it is worth it. I think it’s a great program and helps people lose weight, if you are honest about your points and stick to it!

  101. Heidi Says:

    Does anyone have ideas on how to get daily oils? Not sure how to sneek the oils in…ideas on what foods or supplements to take to get the daily oils?

  102. Laura Moncur Says:


    I’ve written an answer to your question here:


    Healthy oils are yummy and there are lots of ways to add them to your diet!


  103. Lori Clou Says:

    All I know is that I have been diligently following the plan and have gone from 148 to 115 in about 8 weeks. I do not worry about the “oil” thing or the wheat bread vs. white (I hate whole wheat products). I just count my points, eat the things that satisfy my cravings and that way I stick with it without cheating. I think the more we overanalyze and add rules about the olive oil, etc…the more it freezes some people in their tracks. Yes, it is a healthier lifestyle, but when you are trying to lose weight you need to do what works for you. Just my opinion.

  104. Katherine Says:

    I am doing the weight watchers program now but I have found counting all my activities to be rather exhausting. I am very active and have figured out, with all my activity, that eating a blanket 35 points a day (very high, I know but I am losing two pounds a week) is perfect. Weight watchers set me at 25, plus they gave me the extra points, plus I earn on average 5 activity points a day or more. So, I simplified it.

    But I have learned one other flaw in the plan – it doesn’t give people like me enough information. I tried to do the point counting thing one morning before a very strenuous hike that took several hours. What I should have been doing was eating a large breakfast of whole grain pancakes and eggs – points be damned. I got so sick. I didn’t take in enough calories.

  105. me Says:

    when you diet and reduce your calorie intake, your metabolism slows down..

    so eventually, when you stop your diet, your slow metabolism makes you gain all the weight you lost, and you gain more..

    eat less move more if you wanna lose weight..it’s pretty simple..

  106. Raven Says:

    Weight watchers does not really work too well for me because I am a diabetic. I have to eat more protein and fat for my calories because it doesn’t cause huge spikes in my blood sugar. I find that the points system gives low point values mostly to high carb foods. I gave it a fair shot though, the only carb items I really ate were mostly fruits, beans and oatmeal and I stuck to my points strictly but after a month I gained 4 pounds eating about 1250 calories a day. My theory about this is that regardless of whether the carbs are “bad” or “good” the points system encourages a diet that is too high in carbs for those who have diabetes or hyperglycemia. I generally eat low carb because if I don’t I end up losing circulation, seeing spots and getting blood sugar readings over 300. When I am eating about equal amounts of protein and fat and and only vegetables for carbs I can eat about 1800 calories a day and maintain my weight. If I get down to 1500 a day, I lose weight at a moderate pace. This is what works for me and my body chemistry. Not everyone has to be so afraid of carbs but in my case it doesn’t matter whether they are “good” or “bad”, they cause my body to massively overproduce insulin which thwarts my weight loss efforts and gets me sick.

    I also have another theory about why equal amounts of protein and fat and very low carbs works for me in paticular. I am 100% Native American and my Tribe ate mostly fish and vegetables for atleast hundreds of years so I think I am geneticly predisposed to eat that type of food. It may be a good idea to consider your nationality and what types of food have been traditionally eaten in your culture because genetics may impact how you digest different types of foods.

    Now its possible that one could do a high protein weight watchers plan but it would be very difficult and you wouldn’t be able to eat alot.

    Conversely, I gave my weight watchers info to my boyfriend who does not have diabetes and in the last 2 weeks he has lost 10 pounds. I have read alot about metabolic differences in people and I guess that there are alot of people whose bodies run better on carbs and a smaller amount of people whose bodies run better on protein. Its worth it to switch up your protein, fat,carb ratios and see which way your body loses weight faster.

  107. Valerie Says:

    I am getting ready to go to my first (this time around) Weight Watcher’s meeting. I have tried WW before (along with every other diet out there)and have concluded that I just wasn’t ready to change my lifestyle. Hopefully this time it will work 🙂 What I have learned though of the last 30 years of dieting is that you need to be conscious of everything you put in to your mouth.. think it thru – I have spent too many years eating because the food was easily availalbe. I also think that journaling is very helpful.. slows you down, makes you see exactly what it is that you are doing. I have recently moved near the bay with a nice 5 mile track alongside so I am hoping that will motivate me to walk daily. Such simple things when you think about it – yet so difficult to achieve. Good luck to everyone on this site.

  108. Colleen Says:

    Does anybody know how many points a 12 yearold would get for age?

  109. Laura Moncur Says:


    Do NOT put your kid on Weight Watchers. They don’t recommend it at Weight Watchers and I think trying to control your child’s eating will cause more problems than it solves. See what I’ve written about it here:

    I was put on diets as a child and it made my eating disorder WORSE. If you want your child to lose weight, the only thing you can do is to set a good example.

    Best, Laura Moncur

  110. Yadi Says:

    Like someone already said, most diets work if you stick with them. I like WW because NO food is eliminated. It shows you how to continue eating what you enjoy by changing the recipe, having a smaller serving or having it as a special treat a few times a month. As for points vs calories, you have to follow one or the other. For example, a large bowl of plain salad, a small apple, a cookie and a piece of bread are all about 50 calories. WW rewards you for the healthy choice. The salad is 0 points and the apple is 1 point. Whereas the cookie and the bread are 2 points each. This makes total sense to me. All calories are not equal. Good luck everyone.

  111. Michelle Says:

    Oh, Whatever to the beginning of this article – for one fat gram only has 7kcals in it – and kcals are not CALORIES! And another thing, go ahead and cut the fiber out of your diet – it’s not that important is it? It’s important to all the minerals, and unused nutrients trying to get out of the body! AI(adequate intake) of fiber is 38g a day! How much research did you do before posting this crap? If you are trying to lose weight you’re going to have to pay attention to the things you eat, what you put into your body. You should get about 30% of your calorie intake from HEALTHY fats! A great example is Olive Oil! Yeah, it is fat, but it helps you reduce the risks of cancer, unlike Trans fats which will increase you chances of getting cancer. Do you think a light smoker gets cancer because she’s a smoker, while the heavy smoker does not? Your diet matters too! Put a dab of olive oil on your salad, your veggies, make them taste good as well as be good for you!

    And to the 12 yr old on a diet? I think everybody’s different. One person might have been on a diet at 12 and it screwed up their life. Do you know what will screw their life up too? Being the fat kid at school – expecially highschool. There’s nothing wrong with trying to teach your kid good healthy habits. Here’s a book for you. Family Power! Don’t point your kid out even among the whole family. Change the way THE FAMILY does everything. The way the family eats, cause the 12 year old didn’t get big on it’s own. And Weight Watchers is not a bad program for a 12 year old. They will help children as young at 10. Teach your child how to eat right and exercise, before it’s too late. My brother is 25 years old, he grew up the fat kid too. He’s now over 400lbs, and isn’t changing. My entire family is obese so, they didn’t bother to teach him and those reasons are why he stays the way he is. I’m 24, a RN with 2 kids and I’m 120.

    Look up Mediterranean Recipes! They don’t calorie count, and they stay thin and healthy! Your daily intake should compose of 3 MAIN nutrients, carbs protein and fat.

    60% Carbs (No I don’t mean bread, bread, and bread – carbs are in your milk, your fruits, your veggies their everywhere)

    20-30% Fat (Don’t grab a tub of lard. Stay away from Trans and Poly fats – keep your Sat fat in moderation. Mono fats are great fats, just like Olive Oil that is mostly Mono fat full of Vitamin E and Antioxidants)

    10-20% Protein (Mediterranean’s only eat about 2-3 servings of red meat a MONTH(heart healthy). Remember you can get protein in other places! Beans, and legumes are a GREAT source to get protein. Eat more Poultry, your turkeys and chickens are great – eggs. And remember to check your meat for those nasty fats! Keep the volume of those fats lows and the MONO fats high)

    And I’ve done a lot of research with Weight Watchers, If you are out there to loss weight, you’re going to have to count those calories, and pay attention to what you eat. After a while, you know how many pts or how many calories are in that favorite dinner of yours. You’ll get used to it, and used to eating right, and then that will become your habit.

  112. Michelle Says:

    Oh, btw – you can add fiber a lot more natural ways than adding metamucil! It’s called milled flax seed, and you can put it in ANYTHING! It’s not a drug, or anything – it’s an all natural fiber(my kids love my smooties, and yes, I put flax seed in them because I know it’s good for my kids and no it’s not a laxative). Putting such a label on manufactures is ridiculous! There’s more than metamucil to add fiber!

  113. Pedro Says:

    I just started a Weight Watchers program and decided that I will have to take the hit of losing a bundle of money (no refunds) because it is not for me. The problem is that I do not cook, shop for food or it out. I am the guy who attends a convention a block from great restaurants and grabs a sandwich in a corner deli because I do not want to waste time eating.

    I eat what my wife (a physician) serves for meals, but munch all day long compulsively. I am not a food lover. I would prefer never to think about food and thinking about calories or points is thinking about food.

    Two years ago I lost 65 pounds quitting munching cold turkey after a high sugar count. Then when I hit bottom I broke my munching fast and regained 50 of those pounds. I suffered muscle weakening in the process.

    I have concluded that the only diet that would work for me is to eat only what my wife gives me. But where I work everybody brings pastries and snacks and they are even served at meetings. It is hard for me to resist partially. I may need behavioral therapy or something, but after the first meeting I decided that Weight Watchers would just make me think more about food.

    If I had a pill that provided all the nutrition I needed and made me also never be hungry I would take it and forsake eating altogether. And my best days are when I am so busy I forget to snack (except that if I am tired I start climbing the walls, but usually the mental challenges of my job make up for it).

    I should have researched WW before joining (they have a new group at my office) but after the first meeting I wanted to run away. Instead of helping me not think about food it has the opposite effect. But I am told they needed the fixed number to start a group and there are no refunds. I am too cheap to walk away, but I also hate the thought of going back. I tried asking the leader whether in her experience there were people not temperamentally suited for WW and what I got back was a sales pitch. And I still need a plan, support group, or something that will help a compulsive snacker whose wife prepares his main meals (and keeps them limited) but who hates counting anything (but also hates feeling hungry).

  114. c-ko Says:

    Hi there. WW helped my mom loose a ton of weight in the 90’s (35 lbs). She eventually decided to eat whatever she wants and now weighs even more than before. She has tried every diet without great success because they all require calorie counting or eating only one type of food.

    She’s back on WW with her friends, I am too to help encourage her. I am so proud of her, she has already lost 3lbs in about a week. She is finally eating healthily and cutting out the massive amounts of junk food. WW inspired her to eat healthy foods, other diets were not sustainable and she eventually went off them. This time she is dedicated to staying on WW for life. Please don’t hate on ww, it helped my mom once, it will again. Plus, it is allowing me to really observe what I eat and how much crap I usually put into my body.

    I still go to Taco Bell, but I eat 2 fresco tacos that are 3 points each instead of the Crunch Wrap, with fries supreme, which is almost all of my points in one sitting. I did this regularly, I wont anymore. I used to just figure that what I was eating was about 500 cals for the whole thing. But WW made me realize that it is not. I pay attention to my food intake at a fast food restaurant for the first time in my life.

  115. pamela Says:

    Hi all, the thing I love about WW is all the talking on the notice boards. I am guilty of emotional eating but now I express my feeling on the board and get a lot of support from people I don’t know. I have also learnt so much about food. WW teaches me about portion size and what food is good for you. This is only my second week and I have learnt so much and I am aware of everything I eat. The online membership has articles about all health issue, for example learning when you feel full to understanding fats, carbs, protein etc….. I have learnt a few facts from reading all your comments today. Thanks everyone…..;0)

  116. Amber Says:

    Hi. I have been on W.W.’s in the past. After my first baby and agian after my 2nd baby. I lost 40+ lbs. both times. After my third baby, I have not lost the weight yet. So…I am starting w.w. again this week. One question, if you lose consistently at first and then hit a plateau what do you do to jumpstart weight loss again?

  117. Glenn Says:

    Yes you are right. Watching your caloric intake is important in weight loss, but ONLY counting the calories and nothing else is outdated… Studies have shown that although the amount of calories is a good indication of your intake, you have also take into account how much of EACH macronutrient you are taking in. Weight Watchers now has a new formula that does not count calories, but it counts protein, carbohydrates, fat, AND fiber. With this new system, it is recommended that you continue to count your calories outside the points system to aid in portion control.

  118. Lori Says:

    I say go with calorie counting and exercise. There are numerous issues that I have found with WW, some of them already mentioned. The biggest are that WW expects that people will go over their points, so in order to be successful, they intentionally give you lower points to eat. This way you can fudge the tracking and still lose most weeks. At 29 points on PointsPlus, a woman is eating less than 1000 calories a day. Way too low! I agree that this is a surefire way to slow down metabolism, and become emaciated. If you are a committed and honest calorie counter, there is no reason to go under 1500 calories, especially if you are active. Another factor, salmon with all of its’ healthy fats is treated the same as a food with saturated fat! All fats are not equal, yet WW treats them (and punishes them) all the same. These days you can buy CalorieKing books for 8 bucks, a blank notebook and pen, or keep track of calories on your cell phone as you eat. With WW, there is extra steps, first find nutrition info, then convert to points. It is not necessary. After a while of calorie counting, you know how much each food value is the same way you memorize point values. The only difference is that with points, you are always dependant on WW. What happens when they switch point values? Time to relearn all the values. Very expensive for something you can get for free! And check out their success and return customer rates. That says it all. Consumer reports has it right. You are better off on your own, or doing a Jenny Craig or Slimfast or Nutrisystem if you want to not calorie count at all. Another thing, the WW cookbooks and recipes are terribly complicated. Both in the ingredients they call for, and in the food itself. Most people do not want to eat such fancy food combos most days. And who has the time to track down those ingredients and then actually cook these recipes? Like tossed greens with goat cheese, dill, and capers. Alrighty then, what a quick lunch to make for myself on a Tuesday! Give me a break!

  119. Lori Says:

    Also beware on WW for your sodium intake. Consumer Reports published that based on sample WW recipes (not their frozen foods), WW daily sodium was way over recommended amounts.

  120. Nan Says:

    Hello Everyone,

    I see this was started a long time ago but still going in 2011. I recently rejoined WW. I have lost 6 pounds in 3 weeks. This has been the easiest 6 pounds I have ever lost. WW has fine tuned their program. It is now Points Plus and it is the easiest ever. Probably it isn’t perfect, afterall what is….BUT you will become very aware of what you are eating and how it effects you body and that is a very good thing.

    I have probably been on every diet there is in my life time and this one is one that anyone can do and live with.

    Congratulations to all who have a handle on their eating and to those of you who don’t…..don’t give up. Just get going.

  121. ISABELLA Says:

    Hello… I used the MOMENTUM program for a year or so and lost 34 lb. I was very diligent about writing down all that I ate. I was not terribly diligent about exercise. Mildly (no meds)diabetic, I am trying to be more aware of my health and am also seeing a very good physical therapist so that I can manage some severe back pain better than I now do. I feel very frustrated with the Points Plus program. Though it’s good that fruits and most veg. are “free” it’s hard for me to write down every single thing I eat, I find the e-tools don’t always work very well (they lose things) and that WW keeps telling us new things such as “if you eat too many 0 points foods before you eat dinner and then eat 0 points things with dinner, you will have eaten too much.” I find this program confusing and difficult– and I am afraid I am also getting very bored with the way the meeting is conducted. It’s always like being in kindegarten. Still, I fear if I quit, I will gain a lot of weight again. I hope that maybe exercise and sensible diet would do it — but I am not sure. Any thoughts?

  122. ISABELLA Says:

    Also, I can’t really afford the money I am spending on it, now that I am unemployed, and feel that the team leader and others could care less.

  123. ISABELLA Says:

    Also don’t want to hurt their feelings. It’s a small town and if I should quit, it might help doom the group. They did help me for a year at one time– and I do appreciate that.

Leave a Reply


Powered by WordPress
(c) 2004-2017 Starling Fitness / Michael and Laura Moncur