You may know Weight Watchers for their celebrity spokespeople like Jennifer Hudson, Jessica Simpson, Charles Barkley, and Sarah Ferguson, but what’s the real deal behind the diet?
What is the Weight Watchers Diet Plan?
The Weight Watchers program promotes a lifestyle change that includes healthy eating, support from others with in-person or online communities, and exercising more. You don’t have to cut out anything from your diet completely and instead of calorie-counting, Weight Watchers participants count points.
U.S. News and World Report rates this one of the best diets for effectiveness and balanced nutrition.
Weight Watchers Points
You can eat whatever you want on the Weight Watchers diet, but everything has a point value. You are only allowed a certain number of points per day, based on your height, weight, gender, and other factors.
Points used to be calculated on calories, fat, and fiber, but the new PointsPlus system also factors in protein and carbohydrates.
Weight Watchers Online
Local weight loss support groups have always been a core part of the Weight Watchers program. Now with the online program, people can enroll in a virtual Weight Watchers program. There is an app, digital tools, a recipe database, point calculators, a restuarant finder, and message boards for online weight loss support and feeling of community.
Weight Watchers Points Calculator
Points have always been a building block of the program, but Weight Watchers announced a new PointsPlus system in November 2010. The new points system is based on protein, fiber, fat, and carbohydrates. You can buy one of the official reference books, the actual Weight Watchers points calculator, or use one of the online point calculation tools.
If you are an online member, you’d have access to the official points calculator, but there are also other outside sites that attempt to replicate their formula:
Calculator.net’s Weight Watchers Calculator
Calculator Cat’s Weight Watchers Points Tool
How Did Weight Watchers Start?
Weight Watchers was started in the 1960’s by a Brooklyn homemaker named Jean Nidetch. She struggled with many fad diets before she finally found a plan that worked for her at a city-sponsored diet clinic. She started a weekly support group with overweight friends which eventually turned into the Weight Watchers organization in 1963. Nidetch sold the company to the H.J. Heinz Company in 1978.