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Monday, January 17, 2011

Weight Watchers: One Size Doesn't Fit All

We all have different issues around eating. Some eat too much. Some eat the right amount at the wrong time. Some like sweets, some like it salty and some like it hot.  

Those who have more to lose, lose more faster. Those that have those stubborn few pounds may need to change what they do even if what they did before worked.

Although Weight Watchers has been successful for many, I've personally been a Weight Watchers flunkee since I tried to lose weight on their former plans on three separate occasions to no avail. My body works better with higher protein levels than their point system was designed for. The new Points Plus program is a step in the right direction with a focus on whole foods and recognizing that all calories are not created equal.

Fruits and vegetables are encouraged in the new plan because most of us do not consume enough. While I happily consume my five daily servings, I recognize that many do not. But I contend that eating these alone in unlimited quantities without some additional protein has the potential to spike blood sugar and work against us. Yes, eating fruit and vegetables is better than some other high carb foods but the point is to keep blood sugar in check to avoid metabolic syndrome and other disorders leading to diobesity.

I hope that Weight Watchers guidelines recognize this and advise their "members" accordingly.


But unlimited fruit?

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First trained as a food chemist and nutritionist, my career began enriching a Twinkie, comparing the nutrition of a Twinkie to an apple and studying the role of sugar in the diet. With an M.B.A. and years in food and pharma understanding consumers and manufacturers led back to where I started - food should taste great and serve to keep us healthy. To do so there needs to be consumer awareness. Consumers need to vote for what they want by buying what they really want. They need to practice balance and responsible choices. That's when change will come. Please engage me with your conversation so that I can help you make better food choices that you enjoy and gain a deeper appreciation of food not only from farm to table but farm to health. My vision is to promote solutions to marketing healthful food and food practices.