Weight Watchers Cover

Weight Watchers

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Editor Editor   Last Updated: November 14, 2017   Published: April 07, 2015  
 
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Availability
  • United States
  • Canada
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  • Australia
  • International
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Not Listed
Access By
  • Physical Location
  • Internet Browser
  • Google Android App
  • Apple iOS App
Number of Locations
1000 plus

Subscription

Subscription Type
Paid Option(s)
Price Per Month
$16.62 (min cost)
For Weight Watchers Online. Food purchased at your local grocery store.
Shortest Plan Available
1 month
Initial Charge
$20.00
Depending on promotion available Startup fee may be waived
Coupon
Yes

Healthy Living & Weight Loss

Digital Tools
  • Body Mass Index Calculator
  • Weight Tracker
  • Activity Tracker
  • Progress Reporting
  • Points System
Exercise Programs
  • General Health Maintenance
  • Weight Loss

Diet & Nutrition

Features
  • Certified Nutrition Expert
  • Multiple Meal Plans
  • Customizable Meal Plans
  • Vegetarian Meal Plans
  • Gluten Free Meal Plans
  • Allergy Options
  • Suggested Substitutions
  • Recipes & Tips
  • Dining Out Guide

Fitness & Workouts

Features
  • Exercise Plans
  • Detailed Instructions

Customer Resources

Help & Support
  • 24-hour Support
  • Chat
  • Email
  • Phone
  • Forums
  • Articles
  • Videos
Expert Advice
  • Articles
  • Newsletters
  • Books
  • Magazines
Community Support
  • Chat
  • Forums
  • In-Person Support Groups
  • Online Support Groups
  • Success Stories / Testimonials
  • Social Media

Weight Watchers was founded by Jean Nidetch in the early 1960's. In the beginning it was just a group of friends getting together every week to discuss how to lose weight. Since then it has grown considerably and now over 1.6 million people (as of 2017) are currently subscribed and actively using the weight loss system from all over the world.

Weight Watchers helps people lose weight by providing information, tools and motivation. This popular program is not just about losing weight though, it is also about keeping the weight off. This requires positive behavioural changes in your life which Weight Watcher meetings and their online content and tools provide. Weight Watchers OnlinePlus is ideal for people who cannot attend meetings. Here you will learn how to lose weight with the SmartPoints weight-loss system, and you'll be able to use their state-of-the-art online and mobile tools that help you achieve your goals.

The weight loss system at Weight Watchers is called SmartPoints and is developed by a scientific advisory board. This board is made up of a number of credentialed scientists with research experience and knowledge in weight management. The SmartPoints system is designed for a safe rate of weight loss which is up to two pounds per week after the first three weeks. Weight Watchers takes a holistic lifestyle approach to losing weight championing a healthy diet and exercise routines for long-term health.

SmartPoints Program

The original Points program was launched in 1997 and PointsPlus in 2010 (with ActivePoints a few years later). Since then the research Weight Watchers has done into weight loss has greatly enhanced their understanding on how the whole process of losing weight works. The SmartPoint system (launched in 2015) takes into account this ongoing research. For example, every calorie is not considered the same. The food source the calorie came from is also important (protein, carbohydrates, fats, etc.). You wouldn't consider the same calorie serving of carrots equal to the same calorie serving of chocolate would you? How it works is every food and drink is assigned a point value and every person is assigned a daily SmartPoints budget which is based on their gender, age, height, and weight. SmartPoints is calculated using calories (kilojoules), saturated fat, sugar and protein. No food is off-limits, but the plan assigns higher points values to foods higher in sugar or saturated fat, and lower points values to lean proteins. Most fruits and vegetables are zero points.

Once you sign up for Weight Watchers you will be asked to complete your online personal assessment. One of the objectives of this assessment is to determine your SmartPoints budget. It is calculated to ensure you lose weight safely. Your SmartPoints budget will change over time as you loose weight so it is important to track your daily SmartPoints number and to record your weight weekly. To track your points you can log into the Weight Watchers website and visit the "My Day" page and enter the food name in the "Track Food or Activities" field along with the portion size. This tracking can also be done via the Weight Watchers phone app. The phone app also allows you to scan food barcodes to make tracking even faster.

Every week members also receive a personalize SmartPoints allowance. These allowance points can be used through out the week or all at once. These points are extra, and do not need to be used. They also don't roll-over to the next week as you will receive a new set of allowance points.

Overall this system is designed for you to meet your weight goals (based on your height and weight) as easily and safely as possible. This involves learning which foods to choose, the correct portions you should eat and how much you will need to exercise.

 

FitPoints

FitPoints is a way of measuring activity and "goes beyond the scale". When you join Weight Watchers and fill in your online personal assessment, you will also get a FitPoints goal to aim for each week. To reach this goal you will earn FitPoints for all of the activities you do.

Your FitPoints goal is bases on your current weight and how active you are. FitPoints takes your weight, activities, intensity and duration into account. You can earn FitPoints toward your weekly goal with most activities including walking, cleaning, dancing, and about anything else you can think of.

FitPoints goals do change overtime. Every 2 weeks you are prompted to revise your goal. If you are hitting your target it may ask you to increase your goal, or down a bit if your are not. Also your FitPoints goal can be adjusted manually anytime by visiting the online settings.

To track FitPoints you can use an activity tracker like a FitBit. All you need to do is synchronize the device with your Weight Watchers account and the app or website will automatically take care of the rest. If you don't have an activity tracker you can use a health app on your phone with a pedometer (iPhone or Android) to track your daily steps. You would then enter your daily steps into the Weight Watchers My Day tracker found on the website or app. For any additional activities like yoga or swimming you would enter them in manually. For those who don't have a FitBit or compatible phone it is recommend to enter a baseline of 3000 steps each day into the Weight Watchers My Day activity tracker.

You can swap FitPoints for food, but it is not usually recommended since moving shouldn't be an excuse to eat more. However if you are training for a marathon or some other intense activity several times a week, you can swap FitPoints for food.

Weight Watchers OnlinePlus

With OnlinePlus you get a number of interactive tools that allow you to learn how to lose weight with the SmartPoints Weight-Loss System, keep track of your goals, and monitor your daily food intake and exercise. This can be done online with your laptop or, on your mobile phone (Android and iPhone supported).

OnlinePlus offers:

  • Personalize your goals
  • Track your SmartPoints budget and FitPoints (includes syncing with fitness trackers)
  • Track your weight-loss progress each week with graphs and charts
  • Hundreds of recipes and meal ideas (make your own recipes even healthier)
  • Workout and exercise demonstrations (for beginners and advance)
  • Answers to common problems and challenges people have when losing weight
  • Access to the Weight Watchers online community

How it Works

  1. Visit the Weight Watchers website to subscribe and create your account.
  2. Take the Beyond the Scale personal assessment which gathers information about your lifestyle, goals and challenges. This information is used to determine your SmartPoints budget and FitPoints goal.
  3. Schedule Your Free Getting Started Call. All new members get one (even if you’ve joined before). On the call you will talk to a trained coach who will explain the program and answer any questions you have.
  4. Find some SmartPoints plan friendly meals that work for your lifestyle. Weight Watchers has many menus and recipes to help get you started (breakfast, lunch and dinner). There are recipes for everyone, from carb lovers to gluten-free foodies.
  5. Tracking your meals and activities. The Weight Watchers app and website will give you SmartPoint values for everything you eat.

Weight Watchers Meetings

Weight Watchers meetings offer a supportive environment. One of the first things you will do at your first meeting is be introduced to your Leader. A Leader is someone who started out as a member who has lost weight and has also kept off the weight through the Weight Watchers program. The Leaders are trained in the program and are there to guide members by offering their experiences and expertise. At each meeting the Leader will discuss different topics related to weight loss. This can range from meal ideas to what triggers bad eating habits. These discussions offer support and guidance and for those who want to, they can join in as well and talk about what works for them.

At the Weight Watchers website it is easy to find a meeting that is convenient and located near you. All you need to do is enter your Zip Code to bring up a map which shows all the meeting locations within the vicinity. Along with the meeting locations a weekly schedule is also displayed for each location showing when meetings take place. Meetings are run in the mornings, afternoons and evenings. Once you have found a location and time that fits your schedule you can then go ahead and signup online. Guidebooks and printed materials are included with Weight Watcher meetings.

When attending meetings new and existing members are asked to arrive 30 minutes early for registration and so you can be weighted privately and in confidence. New members will also be asked to stay for about 30 minutes after their first meeting so leaders can go over the SmartPoints program and how to best get started. Weight Watcher Meetings also includes OnlinePlus.

Weight Watchers Coaching

With Weight Watchers Personal Coaching you get a dedicated coach that you choose. The Weight Watchers-certified personal coaches are all successful Weight Watchers participants who have lost weight, and have maintained their new weight. Once you subscribed you can go through the coaches profiles and find one you relate too. The coach profiles includes information about the coaches lives including a picture, their gender, age, if they have a family, and how much weight they have lost.

Once you pick a coach you then schedule your first phone call (lasts about 30 minutes). On this call the coach will review with you how everything works and answer any questions you may have. You will also discuss any challenges you are facing. Finally the coach will help you create an action plan for the first week. With Weight Watchers Coaching you get unlimited 1-to-1 phone sessions which includes phone calls and texting. In future calls you will continue to refine and personalize your action plan and start including fitness routines. Overall coaches work with members to develop individual goals and strategies that match the member’s lifestyle. They offer motivation and tips on how to succeed with Weight Watchers.

Weight Watcher Personal Coaching also includes OnlinePlus. Coaching is not available in all countries.

Costs

Weight Watchers is subscription based and has several types of plans for you to choose from. Multi month plans will save you over the regular standard monthly plan. Subscriptions will be automatically renewed at the end of your plan period at the standard monthly rate until you cancel.

With Weight Watchers Meetings you can check out your first meeting for free (does not include program materials). They are only available in participating areas and prices may differ depending on location. You can choose from either a subscription based model or pay as you go (prices not shown).

PlansIncludesSubscription Lengths & Costs
OnlinePlus Digital tracking tools and reports, recipes, and access to the online community.
  • 1 month for $19.95
  • 3 Months for $49.85 (equals $16.62 a month)
  • 12 Months for $219.36 (equals $18.28 a month) - Includes a FREE Fitbit Flex 2 - A $99.95 value!
Meetings Face to face support with fellow members and OnlinePlus.
  • 1 month for $44.95
  • 3 Months for $114.85 (equals $38.28 a month)
  • 6 Months for $229.70 (equals $38.28 a month) - Includes a FREE Fitbit Flex 2 - A $99.95 value!
Coaching Personal Coaching over the phone and OnlinePlus.
  • 1 month for $54.95
  • 3 Months for $149.85 (equals $49.95 a month)
  • 6 Months for $284.20 (equals $47.37 a month) - Includes a FREE Fitbit Flex 2 - A $99.95 value!

* Prices based on a monthly subscription. Prices can increase/decrease depending on subscription length and/or location. All prices in USD unless specified other wise. Costs and features offered last checked March 10, 2017.

Currently the $20 starter fee included on all plans and subscription lengths is being waived. There is a $50 cancellation fee if you cancel anytime with the 12 month and 6 month plan periods.

Disclaimer: While we make every effort to ensure the accuracy and reliability of our information at Review Chatter we shall not be held responsible for any discrepancy. There is a possibility that the information provided here is outdated or wrong, please check with the companies website directly for the most recent information. As always you should read your terms of service before purchasing any product online or signing up to any online service.

 

 

Photos

Weight Watchers App My Day Food Tracking
Weight Watchers App Activity Tracking
Weight Watchers App Progress Charts
Weight Watchers App Barcode Scanner

Editor review

(Updated: November 05, 2015)
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Diet Features 
 
4.5
Fitness Features 
 
2.5
Community Support 
 
5.0
Customer Service 
 
5.0
Value 
 
4.5

Weight Watchers Review

Weight Watchers has been in the weight loss business for over 40 years. Along with this experience and success Weight Watchers has refined their system of losing weight so it has become in our opinion one of the best options someone can choose to lose any amount of weight in a reasonable amount of time and most important, safely.

A healthy dose of will power is needed. This is what makes attending the in-person meetings so important because of the motivation you receive from other members with similar goals. 

One thing to be aware of is that the new PointsPlus system launched in 2008 has different values and ranges than the old Points system. The old point system is not compatible with the new system so do not create a plan that uses parts from both.

Pros
Has been in business for over 40 years - Effective in clinical studies - Developed by a scientific advisory board - Pre-packaged food not required
Cons
A healthy dose of will power is needed
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User reviews

17 reviews

 
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1 star
 
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Overall rating 
 
3.8
 
4.5  (17)
 
3.4  (10)
 
4.2  (16)
 
3.4  (10)
 
3.7  (17)
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Ratings (the higher the better)
Diet Features
Does the service provide the diet programs and tools you need? (not applicable for gym reviews)
Fitness Features
Are there a lot of fitness programs? Is the quailty of the exercise programs good? (may not be applicable for some diet service reviews)
Club Features
Does the gym or club have a lot of amenties like workout equipment? (applicable only for gym and club reviews)
Community Support
Customer Service
Is customer service knowledgeable and available when you need it?
Value
Did you get the value you expected for the money you paid?
Pros & Cons
Time
About Me
Comments
Overall rating 
 
3.5
Diet Features 
 
4.5
Fitness Features 
 
3.0
Community Support 
 
3.0
Customer Service 
 
3.5
Value 
 
3.5

Guys point of view about Weight Watchers

I'm paying about $16 a month and have been happy with  how things have worked out so far. I am fairly technology friendly and am always on my phone and have it with me. That is one of the reasons why I decided to join Weight Watchers instead of another diet program. Having a well made app for my Android phone that is easy to use is important. If it is not easy to input your calories and fitness points and monitor your overall progress and weight loss then your going to be less likely to use the app and therefor the service. I am glad to say Weight Watchers has checked all the points with their app.

I am also happy to say I that since I started about 4 months ago I have lost a lot of weight and also dropped inches in my waste. I've had to buy a whole new set of clothes. I didn't think of that expense but it has been worth it! 😄😄😄

Pros
Relatively inexpensive. App makes it much more handy.
Cons
App sometimes logs me out and then I have to go find my password again to get back in.
Bottom Line
Yes, I would recommend this to a friend.
Length of Time Used
3 - 6 Months
Was this review helpful to you? 
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Diet Features 
 
4.0
Fitness Features 
 
4.0
Community Support 
 
4.0
Customer Service 
 
4.0
Value 
 
4.0

Weight Watchers Supermarket Foods is the Easy Way

I really needed to drop some weight so I decided to join weight watchers a month ago. The problem is I was always hungry in the beginning which made grocery shopping difficult as I tend to binge buy. When I discovered Weight Watchers supermarket foods it made my life a lot easier as I could just buy their frozen dinners to stay on track with my points. No need to worry about figuring out your portions or what you need to eat.

As I figured out the point system I slowly incorporated recipes I liked from Weight Watchers for my own dinners. There is no better motivation than seeing yourself get slimmer. Once I saw that it made staying with Weight Watchers a lot easier!

Bottom Line
Yes, I would recommend this to a friend.
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Overall rating 
 
3.7
Diet Features 
 
4.0
Community Support 
 
4.0
Value 
 
3.0

Weight Watchers Billing Issues

I see a few complaints online about Weight Watchers billing but I never had an issue because I used PayPal. The great thing with PayPal is that you can control repeat billing/renewals and authorize who you want. That solves the issue of being billed when you thought you have canceled like with a credit card. Once you cancel online at Weightwatchers.com, you then can deauthorize on PayPal.com Weight Watchers from debiting money from your account.


Pros
Lost weight while on the program.
Cons
Could cost less money.
Bottom Line
Yes, I would recommend this to a friend.
Length of Time Used
6 - 12 Months
Was this review helpful to you? 
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Diet Features 
 
5.0
Fitness Features 
 
3.0
Community Support 
 
5.0
Value 
 
4.0

Weight Watchers Diet System

I used my friend as a bit of a guinea pig as she joined up first to Weight Watchers. At the time I wasn't ready to join and I figured I would see how she does. Well she quickly got into the points program and started loosing weight which made me a bit jealous (in a good way). Since it was working for her and we were always talking about Weight Watchers, points, and recipes I decided to join sooner than I planned too. 

I am glad I did as it actually is fun using the app to track your points and activities. We also became much closer as friends doing the diet program together. We are good at motivating each other to stay on track and I enjoy discussing the meals ahead with her. In the 3 months since I have been using WW I have lost almost 20 pounds and my friend has lost over 25 pounds.

WW also makes it very easy now to use. Gone are the binders of recipes and the point system than my Mom use to use in the 90s. The app that you download on your iPhone is very easy to use along with the website. It is easy to search and they have a large database of point values for the different foods and meals. Tracking points has never been easier.

Price is decent as well. I am paying only $18.28 a month and I got a free Fitbit out of it.


Pros
WW App is really easy to use. Lot's of info included
Cons
None yet
Bottom Line
Yes, I would recommend this to a friend.
Length of Time Used
1 - 3 Months
Was this review helpful to you? 
Overall rating 
 
3.5
Diet Features 
 
4.0
Fitness Features 
 
3.0
Community Support 
 
3.5
Value 
 
3.5

Takes time but works

In the first 2 months I lost 6 pounds. Let me tell you those first few pounds was very difficult as your learning the new points system and cooking a different way especially with my family and my 2 young kids.

I also found that I was always hungry though that did subside the longer I was on Weight Watchers. It was worth doing for myself but you do really need a lot of will power. Since I am a single mom with 2 children I don't have time for the meetings though I do use the app for motivation reading other peoples struggles and successes. 

I did find the app a little difficult to use at first but once you figure out how things work it does make sense on how things are laid out.

Pros
Recipes and point systems
Cons
Very difficult to get into at first and I was always hungry in the beginning
Bottom Line
Yes, I would recommend this to a friend.
Length of Time Used
1 - 3 Months
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