The new points program is changing the formula and the way Weight Watchers has worked for the last 13 years. We are going to look into the reasons why and what has really changed.
Why Change the Weight Watchers Points system?
Weight Watchers has changed their highly successful points system and their CEO was very quick to explain. A lot has happened since 1997 when the original points system was launched. Technology and science have progressed and so too has our understanding of food, dieting and weight loss. Weight Watchers has adjusted its points system to work more in line with these advancements.
Formula & Point changes
New PointsPlus formula
Please note that this is not the official Weight Watchers formula. Source is from Wikipedia. Although not confirmed by Weight Watchers the above formula is an empirical match to the Weight Watchers calculators. All Units in gram
Examples of Old Weight Watchers Points vs. Weight Watchers Points Plus
|Food||Calories||Fat (g)||Carbs (g)||Fibre (g)||Protein||WW Points||PointsPlus+|
|Quarter Pounder with cheese||430||30||38||2||29||13||14|
|Corn on the Cob||140||2||34||2||5.8||3||5|
|Low-fat Grilled Chicken Pasta||873||8.9||134.3||10.3||64||17||22|
|Low-fat Asian Chicken Salad||714||9||121||9.6||37.5||14||18|
|Low-fat Brownie Sundae||326||3.2||72||4.6||0||6||8|
|Sushi - California Roll||255||7||38||5.8||9||5||6|
|Red Wine - 4 fl oz||85||0||3.1||0||0.1||3||4|
The weight watchers points system to date has helped a countless number of people lose weight successfully, but the new points plus program addresses the key flaws of the original system.
Nutritional Value vs. Calories
The Weight Watchers Points Plus Program takes into account the nutritional value of food rather than just its caloric value, fat and dietary fibre. For example, a small apple was 1 point and so too was a hot chocolate under the original points system. As long as you stayed within your allowable points, there was little emphasis on nutrition. Under the new points plus program a hot chocolate will end up containing more points than a small apple and this seems like a more reasonable assessment.
Further weight loss benefits of the Weight Watchers Points Plus
The Fundamentals are the same
The Points Plus Program has a greater focus on nutrition; it seems so obvious that it almost sounds ridiculous. But what Weight Watchers have done here is very important. Weight Watchers have not changed the fundamental components of their system that has worked so successfully for so many people.
There are still the meetings, support groups, exercise focus and of course, the points system. Importantly, the point system will provide the same benefit to its members by allowing them to easily choose and portion the food they eat each day.
The adjustment for existing members
For new members particularly this is a good thing, but for current members who have become accustomed to the guidelines that the old point system established, there may be a bit of an adjustment. They will be penalized more for many of the foods they enjoyed more freely before as the new system goes about teaching nutrition, not just calories. There has been some resistance and negative feedback from old members in regard to this adjustment and the difficulty in estimating the amount of points with a new system when eating out or shopping. Some have expressed appreciation over the nutritional guidance of the points plus.
It is early days yet but we are hearing some great success stories from the Weight Watchers Points Plus Program already with people reporting excellent weight loss over several to twelve weeks. More time will tell however whether this program will be as successful as it has been so far. I think that once members adjust to the new scheme and new members climb on board, the new system will work a treat and continue to provide healthy effective weight loss for masses of people.