Losing weight and living a healthy lifestyle comes easily for some people. They simply reduce their caloric intake, increase their physical activity and they drop unwanted pounds. Unfortunately, it’s not always so easy for other people. Even when they drastically restrict their calories, they just can’t seem to lose weight. That’s why so many rely on programs like Weight Watchers.
While there are a lot of meal plans available, Weight Watchers is probably the most well-known of them all. To help those looking to slim down make the best decision, we’ve broken down the pros and cons of following Weight-Watchers program.
Benefits of Slimming Down
Maintaining a proper weight is one of the best ways to live healthily. In addition to lowering your blood pressure, reducing the risk of stroke, getting in shape has also psychological benefits. When people are happy with their physical appearance, it has a positive rebound effect mentally.
Overview of Weight Watchers
Weight Watchers (aka WW) is unique in that instead of having its users measure out quantities of food, they’re able to track their intake with a point system. Throughout the day, people use the point-counting system to ensure they aren’t overeating. Since every food has its own point value, it makes it easy to monitor caloric intake.
When it comes to meal planning, Weight Watchers takes the guesswork out of knowing what to prepare and also the exact amount. Since overconsumption leads to weight gain, having pre-calculated portions makes it easy to lose unwanted weight.
Following the plan also helps subscribers learn the right way to meal prep. Instead of focusing on just one dish, as many dieters do, the program demonstrates the right balance of healthy fats and grains. Dieters learn the healthier ways of eating and become more mindful of what goes into their mouths.
Pros of WW
As with any type of weight loss regimen, there are pros and cons. In addition to the benefits listed below, gives those who follow choices. They aren’t limited to only one type of food or such minimal portions that they’re hungry a short time later.
1 – Flexibility
Weight Watchers is one of the most balanced diet plans available. Using the point system, users are able to choose which food has the least points and plan accordingly. Lean protein, vegetables, and fruit have zero points assigned, which makes it easier to pick and choose a well-rounded meal for weight-watchers.
In addition, the system allows people to structure their meal plans around their lifestyle. Easy heat-and-serve options also make it possible to eat healthy when at work.
2 – Encourages Lifestyle Changes
Following the plan also helps its users to develop healthier long-term eating habits. Over time, people learn about portion control and how to gradually implement when preparing meals at home. For instance, following the plan makes it easier to gauge which types of food should be eaten together, have the best nutrients, and which foods can be swapped out for healthier options.
3 – No Off-Limit Food
One of the greatest benefits of the plan is that no food is off-limits. Unlike other diet plans that forbid certain types of food, followers are able to eat the food they love and still slim down. Using SmartPoints, followers are encouraged to indulge in moderation while following a healthy diet. And since SmartPoints are specifically calculated according to weight, subscribers are better able to safely lose one to two points a week while enjoying their favorite food.
4 – Encourages Physical Fitness
People who take on the Weight Watchers diet are bound to get a lot of exercises and physical activity. The more you move, the more Activity Points you’ll earn. This is a great way to keep your daily food consumption balanced. If you’re new to the world of exercise, there is guidance available.
5 – Wards Off Chronic Disease
By following the plan and making lifestyle changes, followers of weight-watchers can reduce their risk of many chronic diseases, including Type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and cardiovascular disease.
6 – Access to Support Groups
The world of exercise and dieting is filled with support groups to join. Perhaps you’re not into all of that hardcore running and bench pressing. Or maybe you’re the opposite and enjoy working up a sweat. Either way, support groups are a great way to exercise comfortably and not feel out of your league.
Cons of WW
Keep in mind though that as popular as the program is, it may not be right for everyone. Some people may find themselves snacking in between meals.
In addition, having to track points can become cumbersome for some people. Although this program can benefit many people, the weight-watchers program may not be suitable for everyone on it.
Below is a list of cons to consider before trying out this weight loss program:
1 – It’s Expensive
For some people, this is worth every penny. For others, however, it can be a little costly. Keep in mind that the amount you pay all depends on what type of program you choose and how long you’re on it. Before diving into the weight-watchers program, make sure to examine each individual cost. You don’t want to end up spending more than you have to.
2 – Frequent Weigh Ins
Monitoring weight loss is one of the best motivators when trying to drop a few pounds. While some people are excited to see their weekly progress, others may feel uncomfortable checking their weight. It can also be demotivating if the needle doesn’t budge on the scale.
3 – Counting Points Can Be Boring
You know how redundant it can be to count the calories you’ve lost? The same can be said for all of the SmartPoints you accumulate. Counting every single point you’ve acquired can be a very lengthy process and in some cases, it might even be too difficult for those who simply want an easy way to eat. While the program provides an app, it’s still data entry.
4 – Lack of Proof for Cardiovascular Benefits
One of the main reasons to exercise is to keep the heart in top shape. However, the plan has shown to not provide a lot in regards to cardiovascular health. This could make this diet plan an unreliable candidate for those who suffer from heart conditions.
If you’re someone who has a heart condition, your best bet is to go with a diet that you discuss, first, with your doctor. She or he will gladly make heart-healthy recommendations for you.
5 – People Have Too Much Freedom
At first glance, this doesn’t seem like a con. This program gives people the ability to choose whatever they want to eat. However, there are a few individuals who lack self-control and spend most of their hard-earned points on unhealthy foods.
If you’re someone who needs to have a limit, a stricter diet plan may be your best bet. A nutritionist can tailor a dietary plan based on your age, current weight, and activity level.
6 – Rippling Effect
While the premise of counting points make sense, this type of plan may not work for everyone. In between counting and saving points for future use, it may backfire in the long run. By saving points, some people may use this as an excuse to binge, which will undo any positive results. In turn, the setback can also lead to weight gain and low self-esteem.
7 – Regaining the Weight
Since many people struggle with preparing food at home, only counting points could backfire in the long run. After following the regimen, some people may find it difficult to manage their caloric needs.
They may overestimate or even underestimate the calories they’re consuming, which often leads to weight loss, and that’s regular exercise.
Final Considerations About Weight Watchers
Losing and living a healthier life is what matters most. What works for one person may not be the right choice for another. Before embarking on a new diet and fitness regimen, it’s important to assess the pros and cons of the Weight Watchers program.
You should also consult with your family physician as well. Some diet restrictions may not be appropriate for everyone. Diabetics, in particular, need to sure that they’re not restricting themselves too much. Keep in that even healthy people can run into trouble if they aren’t mindful when counting points. The key is finding the right balance between points, calorie consumption and physical activity.
The best place to start is defining why you want to lose weight. If you’re just looking to lose a few pounds then simply cutting back on snacks and mindless eating is usually effective. The key is understanding your goals and implementing healthy ways of reaching them.
If you’re trying to completely overhaul your diet and are ready to commit to a lifestyle change, following a regimen program, or at least semi regimented program, can help you establish a healthier lifestyle. Understand though there is no magic weight loss program. Regardless of which program you choose, you only get out what you put into it.