Low Cal Diet Vs. Weight Watchers. Anyone Tried Both Who Can Offer Feedback?

Updated on May 27, 2010
M.J. asks from Sacramento, CA
17 answers

I wanted to find out if anyone had success with Weight Watchers after failing with a low-cal diet? I tried a 1,200 calorie diet twice -- once upon my doctor's instructions and just recently following SparkPeople. I couldn't lose any weight, despite also exercising 4x a week (which I'd already been doing, but I intensified the cardio and reduced -- but didn't eliminate -- the weight training). I was extremely good about portion size, eating healthy, not cheating, but maintained the same weight, despite all of my hard work. I'm thinking of trying Weight Watchers when I get my motivation back, but worry that will also not work. My body seems quite intent on keeping these 16 lbs. I need to lose. I suspect much of it has to do with turning 40 in about a week. I have a message to my doctor about why I can't lose weight but have not heard back and may never. I don't care if the pounds come off 1 lb. a week, just as long as I see progress along the way. Do I have any chance of success with Weight Watchers?

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So What Happened?

Thanks for all of the feedback! I've decided to join Weight Watchers' Online program. Their meetings are on the other end of town, so I don't see how I'd fit them in my busy schedule, but I can commit 100% to the online version. I have IBS, so I'm not interested in detox or alternative options that would cause serious problems for me -- just a sensible way to lose weight. I am on WW now and like it, so I'm all set.

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A.A.

answers from San Francisco on

Weight Watchers works, but if you don't follow the plan you will not loose. Whenever I am not being true to the plan, I will not loose and sometimes I will gain. It's not just about the calories, it's about the whole plan. GOOD LUCK!!

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C.C.

answers from Sacramento on

Weight Watchers works! It means staying within the points, drinking gobs of water and exercising... but it works.

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L.G.

answers from San Francisco on

If the pounds are not coming off it's because you have too many toxins in your body. In order to lose weight you need to do a detox cleansing, then go on the diet. You can find some very good colon cleansing products at health/vitamin store, Whole Foods, or drug stores. You will lose pounds after that!

L.

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L.A.

answers from San Francisco on

Though I've never tried Weight Watchers, I've tried many other diet plans. The one that has worked best for me (and the most painless) is coordinated and managed by my Nutritional Therapist. It's all about counting carbs and protein units, not calories and getting your body into a state of ketosis (fat burning state). It's not just a diet, but an eating plan for life after the "diet" portion is finished. This is, without a doubt, the easiest "diet" my husband and I have ever tried and it's easy to maintain. Kaaren Chinello can get you started. Contact her at: [email protected]____.com or ###-###-####.

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A.S.

answers from Boca Raton on

I have done both and so far have had more success with WW.

I'm only trying to lose about 15 lbs (stubborn though) and have lost 5 lbs with WW. However, I went two years on/off counting calories and only lost a pound or two at the most.

The best thing about WW - for me - is the accountability factor. And you learn lots of good tips at the meetings. I LOVE their online application - makes counting points very easy.

Sometimes I "fall off the wagon" with WW and of course it doesn't work then.

I also agree that you need to look at your nutrients, body type, etc. People are vulnerable to different eating "triggers." I find it easier to resist temptation when I'm taking my "B Complex" and essential fatty acids.

Good luck to you - as someone who recently turned 40 I can empathize. It doesn't get any easier.

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S.K.

answers from Sacramento on

Weight Watchers worked for me when I could afford to pay for it. You should start researching ways to overcome a platue (which is what it sounds like you have hit). There are ways to overcome them and the WW leaders are pretty good about helping you get through them.

Also, I disagree that 1200 cals is too high. That actually sounds too low to me. It depends on you height, and goal weight, but 1200 really sounds low to me, especially if you are working out. I'm actully currently trying the Bodybugg (what they use on the biggest loser) and it has told me that I need to burn 2450 cals a day and eat 1950 cals a day (based on the way I answered their questions). Essentially to lose, you are supposed to have a 500 cal deficit (that's to lose 1lb a week). You might also want to check out the bodybugg.

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C.L.

answers from Sacramento on

1,200 calories is too high it does not matter what diet the 1,200 calories come from.

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K.R.

answers from Sacramento on

Not all weight gain is equal. If the weight you are holding on to is because of glandular stress you will not be able to lose weight with diet and exercise without undergoing a protocol that supports what is going on with your hormones. Many woment who come to me want to lose weight and they have tried all the "diets" and think that hypnosis alone is going to work. It's not only a matter of changing your mind, it is also a matter of changing the way your hormones are able to support your body.

What I have found is that many women, wearing their super mom cape, have stressed their adrenals and their hormones are now so imbalanced that the proper signals can not be given to the body that will release the weight. This, of course is the simplified answer because of space. I see you are in Roseville. I suggest the Ingetrated Wellness Center in Roseville. The RN and nutritionist are very knowledgeable in this area.

K. R.

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M.H.

answers from Chicago on

Yes, my co worker. She was counting call and hit a plateau, so she started weight watchers and started loosing again she is up to 33 lbs lost so far.

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M.G.

answers from Chicago on

I highly recommend WW. It focuses on healthy eating habits, not just reducing calories. My husband and I are currently following the program with some success. I don't feel deprived, and I am seeing results.

Give it a try! What's the worst that could happen? If it doesn't work for you, you'll just be right where you are.

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S.B.

answers from San Francisco on

I have done weight watchers twice and have lost weight on both tries 20 pound and 16 pounds, by doing the point system. Weight watchers is good because they encourage you to make good healthy choices, they provide you with tools you need to succeed for your weekly weigh ins. I also like the friends you make in the meetings so that you are not alone. I love how they understand when you have a low week and they don't give up on you. They make you feel like you are accountable for your actions, so it make you strive for your goals! I am currently doing a low carb diet for 3 months now with my husband and so far I have lost 17 pounds but it so hard. We are actually thinking of joining weight watchers again :)

Updated

I have done weight watchers twice and have lost weight on both tries 20 pound and 16 pounds, by doing the point system. Weight watchers is good because they encourage you to make good healthy choices, they provide you with tools you need to succeed for your weekly weigh ins. I also like the friends you make in the meetings so that you are not alone. I love how they understand when you have a low week and they don't give up on you. They make you feel like you are accountable for your actions, so it make you strive for your goals! I am currently doing a low carb diet for 3 months now with my husband and so far I have lost 17 pounds but it so hard. We are actually thinking of joining weight watchers again :)

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C.S.

answers from Sacramento on

Weight Watchers is not known for helping people be healthy. Controlling calories is really a small portion of healthy, strong body. I've been following a facebook page www.facebook.com/wellnesscorner for the last few months and have learned a lot about being healthy and some great recipes, etc.
The lady who runs the page is a nutrition guru and super helpful.
I would focus on strong and healthy. That's the real issue. The weight will come off when your body feels safe to do so.
Good luck!
C.

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M.H.

answers from Atlanta on

Nutrition is the key to weight loss. You sound like you believe that which is pivotal in losing the weight. Weight will only drop off if your body's nutrients are balanced. Sometimes you can eat food that is actually supposed to be good for you but the vitamins and the minerals have been depleted (either by poor soil quality or canning, etc) so you are not getting the nutrition. My husband struggled for years, never eating badly or being a couch potato but carried 100 extra pounds of weight he couldn't lose. I put him on an absorbable multivitamin/mineral complex and 60 pounds dropped off of him without any activity change or diet change. He stepped up his activity by running and dropped another 50 pounds. The nutrients in the vitamin were actually absorbing into his blood stream and "feeding" the organs so that his body worked the way God intended it. We use a vitamin that is guaranteed to absorb...

Weight Watcher's in theory is good. In addition to what they tell you to do you need a good vitamin and also need to avoid processed foods that contain the chemicals in them (preservatives, pesticides, etc) that break down nutrition. I have counseled on weight loss and weight gain so feel free to get back to me if you'd like more information.

God bless,

M.

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J.S.

answers from San Francisco on

The amount of calories you need to consume while maintaining an exersice plan is not a one size fits all type of thing. It depends on your overall height/weight, BMI and other factors. If you cut calories too much for your muscle mass you will send your body into famine mode and not lose an ounce, while practically starving yourself to death! Weight Watchers can help you to determine how many calories (points) you need at this point in the game and help you adjust the points as you progress. Other programs like Bodybugg can also do this. The biggest mistake people make is failure to adjust calories during the weightloss process. My sister-in-law was losing like gangbusters on WW and working out 5 days a week, but when her consultant said to increase the amount of calories/points she was eating to compensate for her increased muscle mass, she didn't do it. Less is more in weightloss right? Wrong! She didn't lose any weight for a month. Finally her consultant was able to convince her to eat more and she started losing again! She's now down over 70lbs and maintaining weight while eating more than she did when she was heavy and getting heavier. Whatever plan you chose, it needs to encorporate a total life change. Really re-working the way you think about food and exercise and what it means to be healthy. It really isn't about the number on the scale. :)

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H.C.

answers from Sacramento on

there are meeting locations in both Roseville and Rocklin and even Citrus Heights if you decide to try the meetings. I had a hard time committing to the meetings at first (thought they would be a little silly) but I ended up really liking them and finding them very helpful and supportive. They also provide lots of good ideas. I am sure you can do it online if you want to but thought I would give the meetings a plug as they were helpful for me. I lost 45 pounds 8 years ago, kept all of it off until I had my son 3 years ago and now am about 10 pounds over my goal weight. I have not been able to recommit to the program to really lose the last few pounds again but I know that the foundations and information I learned at weight watchers has allowed me to maintain and not gain all 45 back. Good luck!

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C.W.

answers from San Francisco on

I did Weight Watchers a couple of years ago and did ok. It was a pain to have to figure out point wise everything I could eat. I found it just too time consuming unless I stuck to the same things. I'm currently doing Nutrisystems and I like that. They send you the basic meal and then give you ideas for you to add on your own side dishes as well. Only been on it 1 1/2 weeks so far and I'm 3.5lbs down. I exercise 3 or 4 times a week for 1 hour.

P.W.

answers from Dallas on

My husband has done it both ways in the past. He did best on another plan Focus on nutrition, protein, fats, carbs, etc... portions, etc... You can't just cut calories unless you choose very wisely when it comes to what you do it.

Here is the other plan if you have an interest:
http://www.cinchplan.com/healinghappens

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