Weight Watchers has overhauled its points system. And not everyone is happy about it.

The new system's 'PointsPlus' values has stunned the many devoted members who have sworn by the old points method for weight loss since it was introduced 13 year ago.

For the 750,000 Americans on Weight Watchers, the new program will require some adjustment in how they choose their foods.

One reason people adored the program was because it allowed room for sweets and alcohol. Just budget the points for it out of your daily allowance and you were able to keep your weight down.

Using the old 'Points', an apple had the same Points value as a small bag of pretzels. Even though the program leaders urged dieters to eat a healthy balance of fruits and vegetables, there was little incentive to choose the apple.

"Before, we considered a calorie as a calorie," Stephanie Rost, Weight Watchers' corporate program development director told the News. "You are automatically guided toward foods that have a higher satiety value, that will help you keep fuller longer."

Weight Watchers' Idol: Actress and singer Jennifer Hudson reportedly used the new PointsPlus system to transform her body.
Vegetables and fruits are now zero "Points Plus" but processed foods as well as alcohol and sugar are higher. That two-point glass of wine is now four points.

While many are praising the new plan, many are wishing Weight Watchers would bury it.

"I love my carbs and have lost 121 lbs on the old system," one member wrote on the company's Facebook page. "I don't wanna change what I am doing and I feel that Weight Watchers should have given us a choice whether or not we wanted to try the new Points Plus."

"All the Points values in my cookbook are wrong now," one member moaned. "I guess I'll just have to get new ones for my computer."

Members were also irritated that the new ontime tools and products to measure the Points Plus were not given to them for free since the old ones that they paid for are now worthless.

Weight Watchers' move away from processed foods and putting more emphasis on fruits and vegetables is more in line with the trends of today. Nutritionists have long dismissed low-fat, high-sugar foods as a bad way to lose weight. People are paying more attention to the chemicals and additives in packaged foods than ever before.

Under the new system, the 40,000 foods in the Weight Watchers database (it includes both branded foods and generic foods) have been recalculated, taking into account not just how many calories they contain, but what else they contain. All the packaged foods will be recalculated and relabeled, and should be available in the new version within a month, Rost says.

So is the plan better for consumers?

Having a higher point allotment could potentially slow weight loss in some people, says Roberta Anding, RD, a spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association. "As you increase points, you increase total calories, maybe by 100 or 200 calories a day," she says. "But calories or points always count. That subtle increase in points may make a difference in weight loss."

But, she adds, "This is the first time there has been an emphasis on whole foods from Weight Watchers, the first time they recognized that a 100 calorie apple and a 100 calorie cookie aren't metabolized the same way. The concept of getting away from processed foods is a good one."

While members are fretting over the changes and added costs to the new program, others are already disovering free versions of the online tools and sharing new tricks and tips with the skeptics.

"I think it will be fun when all the naysayers who quit come back 50 lbs heavier while the rest of us are healthier and thinner," a member wrote on Facebook. "Love the health-ified new plan."


Bookmark and Share
Related Posts with Thumbnails


Post a Comment

[▼/▲] More Emoticons
:)) ;)) ;;) :D ;) :p :(( :) :( :X =(( :-o :-/ :-* :| 8-} :)] ~x( :-t b-( :-L x( =))