You don’t have to be a Weight Watcher’s member to know that change may not always be welcome, but it might be for the best.
The new Weight Watchers PointsPlus program puts protein and carbohydrates on the center stage with fiber and fat, and calories are not technically factored. It’s the company’s effort to encourage members to eat more fiber-rich whole foods. I pretty much figured out how to do that as I was losing weight on the old program, but I can see how this new program makes it even easier to do.
As I began tracking all the individual foods I ate yesterday, I thought about the question I posed a few years ago: Which do you prefer: eating a full portion of one thing or eating small portions of several things? Or does it usually depend on what day it is, how creative you’re feeling, and what foods you must use up in the fridge before they grow legs and walk away?
I tend to eat several little things all day, and I also think of food in terms of time. I like to eat slowly and in volume. How long will it take me to eat soup or salad or to drink a latte? It takes me two minutes at most to eat a tube of manicotti (which is the same number of Points as my big salads or hearty soups), and that’s savoring it. It takes me 15 to 20 minutes to eat the salad or soup.
When people ask why I became a vegetarian, I tell them it’s because I get to eat more. And at the end of the day, by eating more I’ve eaten less and I feel better. Of course there are always times when a small piece of something sweet or carby or a half-cup of real ice cream is just the right thing – satisfying and eaten in a matter of a minute. It’s the memory of the taste that lasts so much longer than the actual flavor in your mouth.
I’ve counted Points using the old program for nearly six years. It made sense to me, it worked, it sustained me. Now I’m learning the new PointsPlus system, and while the plan makes a lot of sense (even though it’s going to take me a long time to convert six years of recipes), I wonder if maybe I’m relying too heavily on someone else’s plan rather than the one I’ve morphed into my own. I’m comfortable with how I eat and it won’t change just because a corporation tells me fruit is zero points. I know me, I know my body. If I eat more than two or three fruit servings a day, I will gain weight. Having a glass of wine or two doesn’t derail me. I know that at certain times of the month, simple carbs really are necessary for my mental health. We all learn our needs and our thresholds through trial and error.
Having said that, I still believe in WW and I give the new plan a great deal of credit for encouraging people to eat a more clean, healthy diet. Still, in the end, we all have to do what is right for ourselves, to walk out on the edge and use any plan as a guideline and not the absolute truth for our body mechanics.
Whichever plan you’ve chosen to use, how, the further you get into weight loss or maintenance, has your eating plan changed from the time you started?