When it comes to weight loss is weight watchers or counting calories the best option?
Well, what I’ve got to share with your today is a little controversial but truth be told that neither of them are good long term methods and are actually highly flawed.
Weight watchers get you to count points and when you put your data into their system you can work out what you daily allocated points are and as long as you stay within those points everything is going to be okay.
Weight watchers tell you to read the nutrition label on foods, to look for foods low in fat but they never teach you to look at the quality of the ingredients that are going into your mouth. Here’s the label of a weight watchers product I found at the store recently:
In my entire life, I’ve NEVER made a meal with that many ingredients in it!!
Oh…but it’s all okay because you’re staying within your points, right? WRONG!
1. Eating foods like this is a recipe for disaster long term
Weight loss may be your goal and counting points may help you reduce calories initially so that you achieve weight loss results BUT eating quasi foods like this screws with your hormones, does not add any nutritional value to your body, and in the long term won’t help you sustain weight loss.
2. Counting points is unsustainable
Sure I’ve seen some people achieve weight loss on weight watchers, it’s certainly not all bad, but all too many times I’ve seen three times as many people gain it ALL back again. After the points counting has stopped you gain it all back because you haven’t actually been taught any nutritionn fundamentals, you haven’t been taught the types of foods your body needs for optimal fuel and function, and the types of foods to eat to sustain weight loss. You’ve just been told to count points and as long as you do that there are no boundaries. So guess what? Stop counting points and there literally are no boundaries, you’re back to your same old ways, no new knowledge, no new habits or skills!
Counting calories has many flaws as well. You set a certain amount of calories that you think you should be eating. Most people set their calorie intake way too low because they have heard that calorie reduction helps you lose weight. That’s what the weight loss industry says, right? Well yes, that’s what they say and in a sense they are right, reducing the amount of food we eat is never a bad thing because often we are eating too much food.
But if you set your calorie intake at 1200 calories a day, which most people do, chances are this is not enough food and guess what happens when there’s not enough food? Your body will protect it’s fat stores, there will be no fat burning occuring. So if you’ve been wondering why you’re not losing weight on a 1200 calorie diet, that’s why. I see it all the time.
The calorie counting method is flawed like the points method in that most of the time you can eat whatever you want as long as you stay within your required calories. Counting calories is boring, it takes loads of time, and it’s non intuitive.
The calorie myth is not completely true either because all calories are NOT created equal. Eating 2000 calories of junk will produce a very different outcome to eating 2000 calories of healthy nutritious food!
Both the weight watchers and counting calories methods are non inutitive!
What does that mean? It means you are not listening to your body. The methods don’t teach you to observe your physical needs, they don’t teach you how to balance hormones, promote optimal function in the body, they just teach you to count points or numbers and stay away from fat!
The Best Method For Losing Weight
So that’s all very well, but if weight watchers and counting calories don’t really work what does?
Eating real food works!
Eating the types of foods your body was designed to eat, the types of foods that balance hormones, the types of foods that promote optimal function and reduce inflammation in your body. When you can do this, the body sheds weight because you’re naturally aligned with nature.
And one of the most important things is that you can sustain your weight loss long term, which both weight watchers and counting calories don’t help you to do. So here you are yo yo dieting, losing the weight, putting it all back on again, only to have to lose it again.
Stop doing it to yourself. Let go of those ways of ‘dieting’ and start focusing on what really matters, clean, simple, yet delicious real food is a lifestyle that’s sustainable. You don’t have to count calories, weigh, or measure. You can enjoy loads of delicious fresh reall foods, and you can eat A LOT, lose weight and most importantly, keep it off.
It’s the only long term sustainable solution and you want a long term sustainable solution, right?
Nutritionist & Health Coach