Photo: Shutterstock / Jonathan Weiss
Have you heard? Weight Watchers has completely transformed their program this year and everyone’s talking about it. It’s called Weight Watchers Freestyle, and get this, it allows a ton of free foods that you can eat unlimited quantities of. Yep, that’s right, unlimited quantities.
If you’re not familiar with Weight Watchers, here’s a little bit of background: Typically the Weight Watchers program works on a point system. Every single food item has a specific number of points, which Weight Watchers calls SmartPoints. You’re allowed a specific number of points every day, helping you to portion out your food and eat foods that have a lesser point value (like produce).
The new WW Freestyle program, however, changes the Weight Watchers game. Having a list of 200 zero Points® foods (free foods that have no SmartPoints value) is to reflect the most recent U.S. Dietary Guidelines that have been researched since Weight Watchers first launched their SmartPoints program.
“We anchor ourselves to the dietary guidelines,” said Gary Foster, Weight Watchers’ Chief Scientific Officer in an interview with Business Insider. “It’s one thing for a team of experts to say ‘This is what the globe should eat,’ and it’s our job to then develop a system that can change that pattern of eating.”
So if you plan on attempting the new WW Freestyle program, here are a few pointers to help you succeed.
Incorporate as many zero Points® foods as possible
Have you seen the zero Points® food list yet? It’s huge! There are tons of delicious foods to choose from on this list, and you can eat as much as it as you want! Now that may seem too good to be true, but keep this in mind: Could you actually eat 10 eggs in one sitting? Probably not. These foods will fill you up fast, and they are going to do wonders for your weight loss goals.
Drink lots of water
Yes, drinking water is still good for you, and it’s going to help out immensely with your new diet plan. There are a ton of benefits that come with drinking water regularly, including weight loss, improving fatigue, and helping with digestion.
Plan it all out
Meal planning sounds like the pits, but it can be very effective when it comes to succeeding at a diet such as Weight Watchers. Take an hour on your weekend to plan out every single meal for the week—including snacks. Make a grocery list for those meals and stick to that grocery list. Oh, and make sure that you don’t go to the grocery store feeling hungry! That never goes well.
Make smart swaps for your cravings
Cravings are inevitable, especially when you first start a dieting program such as this. Weight Watchers actually recommends satisfying those cravings by finding other avenues to do so. For example, if you have a sugar craving, satisfy that craving with a delicious piece of fruit. Or if you want something salty and crunchy, try popcorn instead of chips. Looking for some snack ideas? We have a ton of healthier snack recipes for you to pick from.
Use your slow cooker
Just because you’re eating healthier and trying to cook more doesn’t mean you have to make it so hard for yourself! Your slow cooker is a great appliance to use when trying to eat healthy, especially when your days are busy. Our list of 50 healthy slow cooker recipes is a great place to start. Plus, most of them are stuffed with those zero Point foods.
Get active—and make it fun!
Working out isn’t just running on the treadmill or lifting weights. There are so many other fun options that will get you sweating in no time! Try swimming, pilates, yoga, or even cycling. Better yet, call up your friends and plan to go for a long walk early in the morning or after dropping the kids at school.
Bank up your points for one delicious treat
One of the best things about Weight Watchers is giving users an understanding of their favorite treats, and how it affects their overall diet. However, they don’t completely cut out these treats compared to other popular diets (like the Whole 30). The best part? This new program actually allows you to rollover SmartPoints! So if you ate really well throughout the week and have extra SmartPoints to blow, you can treat yourself to something sweet. It’s all about balance, right? And how could you ever deny a delicious slice of this classic chocolate cake?