Weight Watchers take the floor… and fall through it

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not anti-Weight Watchers. I’m just not for it.

In fact, in 2004, I undertook a two month trek into the vast valley of the points system, flex eating, and online membership. I purchased the little calculator, never spent my flex points, and, over the course of 60 long, hungry days, managed to lose 25 pounds.

I was too tired to jump up and down (thankfully, the floor was concrete) to celebrate the weight loss. I just wanted a piece of bacon. Or cheese. Or something with less more in it than the packaging of their convenience foods.

Read Tom Naughton’s blog post about Weight Watchers that inspired this one.

In dedication to my hard work in not enjoying any of the foods placed before me over those 60 days and meeting my first 10% goal, I was about to be rewarded for my weight loss and hunger… with a reduction in calories. The French stormed the Bastille for less. It was at that moment I gave away the little points calculator, the books and my online membership and took up bacon, egg salad, mayonnaise and vegetables.

And in the course of the next three months, without counting points, visiting chirpy website leaders or attending any meetings, I managed to lose 55 pounds, hunger free, and with more energy than I ever experienced on a low-fat, high carb plan.

It stands to reason that if calories in and out accounted for weight loss, and since weighing the most I ever had in my adult life, I should have lost more in the beginning with 2 months of WW with exercise (25 pounds) than in the following 2 months of Atkins without exercise (35 pounds). It was only when I was 25 pounds lighter and began Atkins that the rest of the 70 pounds in those five months melted away with little to no effort, save for lifting my spoon to add more mayonnaise. To boot, my doctor stopped the anti depressants, acid reflux medications and high blood pressure meds that I had been taking up until that point.

Not bad.

I understand that different people have different needs when it comes to weight loss and physiology, but my own foray into the world of low fat, high carb left me hungry, tired, depressed and considering weight loss surgery (second only to having my lips stapled shut).

For all of the support systems (which cost $$$), convenience foods ($$$) and calculators (you guessed it–$$$) of Weight Watchers, I couldn’t manage longevity. Only Atkins made weight loss intuitive, inexpensive and long-term.

And while recidivism is an issue regardless the plan, low carb has nothing to gain from those who fell off the wagon and proceeded to gnaw on its tires. Weight Watchers smiles, extends its hand, and invites you to another meeting… at a cost of $12.00 per week, plus incidentals. If that’s not enough to floor you, you haven’t been to a WW meeting in Sweden.

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  1. I've tried Weight Watchers, several times, but their points system really bugs me because it makes no sense, and the math doesn't even work out right.

    And, besides, their system is high-carb and low-fat, which makes me sick.

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  2. Robin Bayne says

    I saw that article on the WW floor collapsing, and I am ashamed to say I thought it was hilarious : )

  3. Me, too. Both times I spent my day's points eating junk and being hungry. I joined again (this time online) a few months back after a friend of mine succeeded on it. However, I couldn't do it for more than a day.

    I had success with locarb on my own years back, but over the years, I have not had much luck with it. I recently started Medi Weight Loss, which is an expensive locarb clinic. For whatever the reason, it has helped me. Perhaps the lightening of my wallet is where I was carrying the excess weight. I don't like that I've had to pay the bucks for essentially the philosophy I have known and followed previously, but perhaps the meds, vits, and working through a program have helped. Whatever. It is working for me. I'm holding the weight off.

  4. My mother lost over 100 pounds on Weight Watchers around 30 years ago and as a result became a militant vegan. I was 12 years old and therefore had to become a vegan, too. I just chucked it, thirty years later, three weeks ago! I'm learning all about low carb and feeling better than I have a in long, long time. I am enjoying going through your recipes!!

  5. Erica Gott, aka Erratica says

    My poor mother went on Weight Watchers in late 1973 and starved herself. She just couldn't understand why she didn't lose any weight. We found out in May 1974: she had ovarian cancer! They removed 2 5# tumors (one on each ovary), intact. She lived another 28 years, thank God. She never went on Weight Watchers again, although I think it was actually working, don't you?

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