Are you dreading your New Year's resolution before it's even started?
Slimming down after the holiday season might be a little easier this year, thanks to Weight Watchers. The diet brand is more than 50 years old, and the company admits they're struggling to attract customers while competing with all kinds of fad diets and exercise trends.
In the past, the brand relied on celebrity endorsements from big names like Oprah Winfrey to attract customers, but that just doesn't cut it anymore. Instead, Weight Watchers has retooled their famous "SmartPoints" system, and the good news is you can indulge on some of your favorite foods without worrying.
SmartPoints works by matching your dietary needs to a number, which you're supposed to stay under by eating foods with low numbers assigned to them. Keep under your number, and you should lose one or two pounds per week.
That just got way easier, because Weight Watchers has expanded their list of zero point foods, which you can enjoy as much as you like without raising your SmartPoints score. CEO Mindy Grossman hopes that adding healthy treats like fat-free yogurt and skinless chicken breasts to the list will attract more interest in the diet.
"It will attract Weight Watchers members that see this and say, 'This looks like something I want to come back to,'" she said.
But there's also real science behind their choices, and the new list has a lot of great options we're going to enjoy.
A food's SmartPoints score is decided based on its content of calories, saturated fats, sugar, and protein.
The revamped system encourages you to try foods with more fiber and protein, while steering you away from sugar. Lots of the new ingredients on the list can also lower your risk of chronic diseases.
But mainly, the company's chief scientist Dr. Gary Foster says the expanded list of zero point foods is based on realistic eating habits.
"These foods form the basis of a healthy eating pattern," he told Business Insider. "Do we really care if people are eating four ounces of salmon versus six ounces of salmon? No. Very few people come to Weight Watchers because they've had a problem overdoing it on salmon, legumes, beans, and chicken."
Those foods all made the new list of zero point ingredients. Here's a sample of what you can enjoy guilt-free in the revised program:
- Skinless chicken breast
- Fat-free yogurt
Some of the entries on the list, like eggs, were controversial. But the latest research shows these breakfast staples aren't the cholesterol bomb we once thought they were.
Has the brand's new menu enticed you to try their diet?
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