Posted by: Chris Maloney | April 14, 2011

Weight Watchers Points Plus: Fine For Short Term.

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Image by ninahale via Flickr

I’ve been getting some comments for attacking the good folks at weight watchers points plus, which was never my intention.  If you can commit to their program for life, then more power to you. 

The issue is that every (read again: every) weight loss program out there does not seem to make a major difference long term.  Six months, a year maybe.  But over five years people are statistically not maintaining the weight loss.  Individuals who stick to the programs for life do maintain that loss, but they aren’t average. 

So I went looking around on the web to see if I was way off base on this one.  Nope, pretty much what I thought.  Bloggers who don’t like WW and like things like paleo find the program far too complex.  dietitians who like the program think the changes are long overdue.  And Dr. Oz, who has his own weight loss program(s), was impressed by the weight loss of one individual (results may vary). 

So for most of us, here’s the bottom line.  What we know about nutrition isn’t even in the dark ages.  We’re in the stone ages.  That’s why they needed to revamp WW Points Plus to bring it up to speed with what we’ve learned.  But what we’ve learned is the tip of the Himalayan iceberg compared to what we don’t know. 

Here’s some recent thoughts on this.  Antioxidants are good, right?  More is better?  Except that too much may actually increase oxidation by drawing from healthy molecules that you need.  Now, the vast majority of us don’t get enough antioxidants, which is part of the reason the WW now puts zero points on fruits and vegetables (best way to avoid all cancers: eat fruits and vegetables).  But some of you out there are vegan raw fooders who additionally slug down your noni/acai/exotic antioxidant of the month every morning.  Guess what? You’re probably oversaturating.  We have no studies that show that level of intake is helpful. 

Anyone who is confused or concerned with weight should take a look at my own weight loss journey.  I ran my body through pretty much all the paces: protein, carb, fasting, metabolic enhancement.  But the bottom line for me is that certain combinations of foods seriously and immediately impact my weight while others make almost no difference.  I’ve put several years of my weight fluctuations online, with notes about the fluctuations.  At this point I’m in year three of my non-diet, live-this-way-for-life and doing relatively well. 

If you keep track of what causes you problems and then watch the process by which you keep doing that behavior without freaking out, it is possible to learn to live with yourself peacefully. 

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