Why I Switched from Weight Watchers to Medifast

INTRO NUMBER ONE: The Dr Phil Effect.

How to get Weight Watchers for free. Really!
My very thin friends somehow appear gaunt and wiry and tired, those with some healthy weight seem to glow. You're just having a hard time doing it. Was worried about not having access to the restaraunts, calculater, etc. If you've ever felt hungry for protein on Weight Watchers, this meal will really appeal. Thanks for the feedback, Antione! I have done Weight Watchers online for 2 years and am now in maintenance.

INTRO NUMBER TWO: The Billboard Effect.


If they are cooked, you need to calculate what they were cooked in. Avocados are not free due to the amount of fat they contain. Check out the new WW program. Minimum points now are Eggs, beans, chicken and turkey breast are all zero points. A serving of corn or peas are also zero. I was going through this and your link to the PP calculator needs to be updated. I had weight watchers information on their old system and was going based on that.

I was wondering if I can follow this plan while pregnant? And if so how do i adjust the points if needed? I gained over 50 pounds with my first daughter and havent lost it all yet, and now im pregnant. I just dont want to gain another 50lbs.

I kept it up while pregnant with Dr approval. Why would you want to lose weight while pregnant? You are awesome for posting this info. I passed it along to some of my girlfriends who appreciate this too! Or will I need to get a new one? Thanks for your help! I lost 30 pounds in using the old system: Ashley Do you still have the old weight watchers program, and if so are you interested in selling it with the old programs calculator?

Jackie, You CAN use a points calculator purchased in Nothing major changed in the points program from to The new calculators just have bigger buttons. Thank you for this information Tamara! I have one from and was wondering if I could still use it.

Also, ALL fruits are 0 points plus! Also, canned fruits in its own juice with no added sugar is 0 points plus and frozen unsweetened fruit. Not sure about the canned fruit sweetened with Splenda. WOW; I love this! Thank you for this amazing resource! If you have a smart phone you can download the WW app or a points finder app for 2 dollars. This is so great. I did WW after my first child and went from a size 12 to a size 6 in 2 months!

And I am bookmarking this post, so I can find it all for free. Congrats on your previous loss, and good luck for your post-partum weight loss: You can do it! I just found out that you can get a free weight watchers points plus calculator for your smartphone too!

I updated the post to include an embedded calculator. Make sure you bookmark this blog post! This is what I have been looking for. Since most restaurants post their menus with nutritional information, it is a snap to cut, paste and insert a formula. So far it works perfectly for points plus. I know that potatoes do even raw, any variety white, sweet, etc Corn does, Avocado def does etc.

This is a list of some 0 point foods. Hope that helps a little. I have a question, I have recently lost 20 pounds on the new ww points plus without attending meetings! After how much weight loss or is it after a month? Great job on the weight loss! Hi, Here is a webpage where you can calculate your points allowance free http: Actually you recalculate about every lbs.

I have lost 16 lbs. You need to recheck your points everytime you lose weight, so each week if needed. Then also check it once you have a birthday, as you get less points the older you are. Lori — most fruits and veggies are 0 points. Starches potatoes, corn, some peas are excluded. Bobby Jo — WW actually measures your weight every week and your daily alowance tends to change with every pounds lost. Every birthday counts against you too. I am really excited, but also really scared….

I have battled forever and cannot seem to stick with anything long enough like 4 days one week at the most!!

I am hoping I can talk with people and read these posts for encouragement. I love healthy food, but I am sorry sometimes hot peanut butter cookies and ice cream are just really hard to pass up!!!

Thanks for all of the info and this great site with all of the perks. I have seen results in other people and they are amazing. I am super anxious right now and hoping for a different outcome than all others! I do the best on the weeks that I make a big pot of veggie soup zero points. Also, have lots of good fresh fruit on hand and prep your veggies ahead for easy snacking!!

I believe on the Points Plus plan, there are 49 flex points for the week no matter what your weight. I thought it was 35? This was from a few years ago. Awesome, thanks so much! I do have one question; I am breast feeding my 9 month old. I think I would be fine with the 7 extra, although I just switched from the old system to the new points plus this morning lol. You really want to use all of the points allotted so as not to affect your supply.

And one more thing! The points balance for my current and goal weight is the same, how can that be? My goal is only 5 pounds less than I am now, but still… TIA again! Thank you so so much!! You just saved me a ton of work. I just finished my 3 month subscription with WW. Not while pregnant, of course. This info is going to save me so much time!

I have been doing ww for a while and there is some changes coming. I and a lot of members at my meeting think they are changing things for pregnancy. Keep an eye out for the changes. Is this calculator set on maintaining or losing weight?? Thanks for the free info! I cannot find it for the life of me. I got steel cut oats as it said the regular would be too mushy and now I cannot find the recipe!!!

I dont think they actually had granola in them, but you made the oats in the crock pot and then put them in a pan wax paper lined and baked them. Please oh Please if you know of this recipe please let me know!!!!

Ive been doing weight watchers for a couple of months now and I can confirm that the numbers I get from the links posted here are pretty darn close to the ones from weight watchers. A point is off here and there. Couple of cool things to know though are: Do it at the same time and try to wear the same clothes…or none at all! I guess thats the glory of doing it at home — Most fruits and veges are free ie: Use your judgement I suppose. Weight it and measure it and I mean everything.

Little sips and tastes can add up. Have you lost weight on the WW program? I do not have a problem with the points idea, I just cannot get my weight to budge like everyone else can. I guess it is my being 42 or something, but I gained 20 pounds in a few months and did not do anything to encourage that and now I cannot budge it.

Any advice would be appreciated. Sorry, what exactly do you mean by staggering calories? Yep, that is totally a typo — sorry!

Staggering calories has been known to help bust you out of a plateau: Make sure you eat enough protein. Keep an eye on your sodium intake too. I am 42 also and have noticed that the weight comes off slower that when I was younger.

Keep working at it and you will lose the weight!! One of my friends got stuck — took her 6 months to lose 16 lbs. The 2nd 6 months she lost 50lbs. I have done Weight Watchers online for 2 years and am now in maintenance.

Just FYI… there is a phenomenal meal planning service that gives you breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks and dessert every week with PointsPlus calculated. I use it and recommended it to my friend who is cash crunched. She loves it too. Website is shrinkingonabudgetmealplan dot com not sure if I can post links here.

Can you give me your email address? You said you have a link for the special? Sample meal plan on the site looks really good though. I would hugely appreciate it if you could do that for me. My email is jillfiredup on yahoo and I just checked. I do have a working link to that special. I am on the WW Point plus and used the calculator as well and it was off. Im not sure if that will help anyone but I have lost 41 points in 6 months on this plan and its awesome!!

I do it online and pay Good luck to all!! Hi this is great! I was hoping you had something for the old weight watchers though? If not I may try this again: Hi, i have never done weight watcher before..

I am slow at understanding.. Lolli, Most of your fruit and veggies are zero points. Then to figure out the points in food you need to know the calories, protein, fiber and carbs in the item. You put that into the Points Plus Calculator and viola you know how many points in that item. Also, you can google the item to get the nutritional info. The higher the fiber and protein the lower the points value.

Hi carbs raise the points value. Hope that helps you!! I just found this on Pinterest, and I am sooooo happy! I was just thinking about how in the world I was going to come up with the money to join Weight Watchers. Thank you so much for doing this. What am I doing wrong? Everytime I enter a food into the points calculater the points part reads NaN. Thank you so much for posting this!!! I actually pay for the service and your calculators are significantly off. Thank u so much for this!

I too am a full time breastfeeding mama of 2 and although I have lost 52lbs already w hard work and nursing, I still have about 30lbs until I am at my healthiest weight. I am hoping this program will help get m there. Can anyone tell me how to calculate the number of daily points if I am on maintenance using the plan?

Just please be mindful of not depriving yourself. I just wanted to report my friend has been doing Weight Watchers simply by using tools found on this post. She just could not afford doing Weight Watchers online right now. I double checked her PointsPlus with my online tools and the PointsPlus she was given matched what the calculator said. She has already lost 7 pounds. It is shrinking on a budget. My problem is that i realy like sweetys, and i cant stop snacking: My recommendation would be to check out some of the links above like SkinnyTaste and the like.

Um, I need help with the second link to calculating the points of your food. What info do you enter here? Is it food label info? If so, how do you get the points of chicken, pork, etc?

I would really like to lose about 15lbs just for health reasons. Thanks for your help. Yes, you enter the food label info into the food point calculator. For foods without a label like meats, fruit, etc. I knew that as long as I made healthy choices, I was on plan. The points were more of a jumping off point: Googling something is never my first thought!!! Guess my age is showing! Does anyone have a list of all kinds of foods, their point value and serving size?

I did ww along time ago and their books of food really helped. Does anyone have access to the charts we would use to keep track of our daily and weekly intake, also the weigh on charts? Thank you so much for this info! I joined WW last year and lost 26 lbs in 5 months. I then got pregnant with my 2nd babe and had to stop. I know how it all works but needed to know the extra points for breastfeeding.

She is still nursing pretty full time but she does get formula and has currently started on rice cereal. I am going to start with the 7 points and add the other if needed. I wanted to let those know who are looking into this that it is all pretty accurate. I found when I was on the system last year and attending meetings I was still eating what I normally ate but was eating less and the weight started to come off.

I entered my info on the link Ashley provided, it gave me 26 points. But again, portion control as well as moving more, you will see a difference in the scale! Would you happen to have a link or something with the recipe builder. I make this killer granola and want to know how many points it will cost me!

Not sure I can give it up just yet: I really appreciate this page. Hopefully reading these comments will keep me encouraged. I cant afford weight watchers and I thought I could do this by myself but Im extremely inconsistant when dieting and working out. You can so do it! I had success twice with WW many years ago and would love to do it again but have a couple of questions please.

I checked and my points are 39 per day but another link on here said 26 for daily target what is that? Also how do you know how many points the foods are for example a cup of mashed pot or a chicken breast etc. Thank you for any help you could provide. I wanted to ask if you know of a place that has a free recipe builder that will either calculate the points plus value, or provide you with the combined nutritional info so you can then find the points plus value?

I googled, and this is what I came up with: I would always just calculate each ingredient separately, then add them together: It is so customizable and the options are endless. FYI — I have nothing to do with the company. I just love the software.

I can use in a day etc…I much prefer to have a set amount of numbers to work with…easy peasy!!! Sue, There is a website which you can access on your smartphone browser namely: I use it all the time and I think you will find it useful! Thanks for sharing as I just had my 2nd baby and cannot afford the program. I calculated my points based on the old program and it is How can iI find out how much would it be now with the new program.

Is this even possible at all? Also, if I follow the older version with the older point system, is the points for the food now the same?

When I was on the program, is used this nifty site when eating out. I just bookmarked it on my smartphone. I just started last week and have not seen any changes as of yet: I have been going over my daily allowance but use the extra points from exercising to go back to my allowance… Thoughts? You can do it: If you have an iPad there are some great apps for free or very inexpensive that will do all that for you, they even have scanners to scan bar codes that give you the points right at the store before you even buy the food, that has been truly valuable.

Now if only someone would come up with an electronic tracker that is free life would be so awesome!!! It tracks your daily, weekly and activity points. You can even search foods and their pp values on there and look for restaurants. I was bouncing between three different android apps trying to keep it all together.

My thumbs also thank you: Hi I would also like to get a pp value for foods. Is there an app I can purchase. Can I down load it on to my PC? Or does it have to be on downloaded on to a phone. What about the additional 49 points each week?

These prices are subject to change at any time. We do our best to keep them current, but ultimately the awesome folks at Nutrisystem decide how much things will cost, and they may change periodically. I certainly liked reading all that is written on your site. Keep the posts coming.

Trying to figure out what works best for me. ET the day before your order is scheduled to be processed by calling My brother recommended I might like this website. He was entirely right. This post truly made my day. You can not imagine just how much time I had spent for this information!

Buy food to supplement 2 of their meals and one snack every day. Oh and supply the food for 2 flex meals each week. You will save a good amount of money. Pus the food will taste better. I still think Nutrisystem is fairly priced, and is an excellent resource for people looking to lose weight quickly. You will get results when following their plan, which is why it can be a great option for a lot of people who have a significant amount of weight to lose. For me, it has been a good way to reset after weight gain, and then I can go back to focusing on eating healthy and preparing meals on my own, sort of like you plan to do.

In any case, hope your month went well, and best of luck with your weight loss journey. You have made some good points, and the pricing info is well-detailed. Thanks Carla, happy to hear you found the information useful — if you decide to try Nutrisystem, I hope it goes well!

Thanks for the pricing info. Has anyone else been able to do this? Hi Cindy — Thanks for visiting, and happy to hear the pricing info helped! I think 5 to 10 pounds is totally doable, especially if you commit to the full 2 months! Remember, Nutrisystem does offer counselors to help keep you on track, and as long as you stick to the program, you should see a significant amount of weight loss during that time period! That has definitely been a key to success for me over the years.

In any case, best of luck — let us know how it goes! I was pretty pleased to find this web site and your cost breakdown is very detailed. Thanks for all of the information — it makes my decision a lot easier. Hopefully can report back with some great results. Thanks for all of the information. Makes my decision a lot easier knowing exactly what things are going to cost! Need to loose about 59 pounds. Thank you for the sensible critique and cost info.

Mostly fish and vegetables. Sometimes chicken or turkey but not all the time! Is there a plan to start me on this regiment? Can you send some ideas and pricing plans? I tried turbo shakes with other companies and they gave me lots of gas…lol Thanks if this gets to you. Hi Jim — sorry, I missed this comment at the time you posted it. I would also recommend looking at BistroMD https: Diet-to-Go has some really good plans that sound like they could work for you.

Both are going to be a bit more pricey than Nutrisystem, but sound like they could be a better fit. My husband and I are considering NS. We also do not want to purchase ANY other food if possible. Hi Lynn — I replied to Ray with a couple of other options BistroMD and Diet-to-Go …I would recommend checking out those reviews if you think they may be something that would work for you and your husband.

There are definitely some ways to keep the costs down though. I haven't forgotten telling you, back in July, that I was thinking about it I told you before I'd really even told myself, haha. I prefer fresh, real food too. I think of it as my 'reward' - not in the way you get a cookie as a reward but that as long as I can get to a healthy weight and stay there, then my love affair with real food can continue I made the mistake of not continuing to weigh in with WW once I lost the weight more than 10 years ago now.

It won't happen again. I'm just trying to not veer off on my own path quite yet. Because I've definitely learned some good things from Medifast, things I'll want to continue. Thanks for the referral too, I'll check into it! I make everything from scratch, so get to make the things I love to eat, but I find as I age I need to eat less to stay in a healthy weight range; consciously moving more helps too.

I hope you will find the balance that works for you once you have transitioned back to food. Once you are happy you are in a weight range that suits you, please be kind to yourself and do something immediately to remedy the situation should the scales start upwards or your clothes get tighter, so that you don't have to resort to expensive, processed diet food ever again. Alanna, Good on your for taking charge of your health!

I told you it looks like you're aging backwards in that photo-weight loss and daily vigorous exercise sure shine almost as much as your smile. I am not trying to lose weight, only to get on my Reformer in the basement at least 3 times a week, but when a bunch of friends were trying and told me about myfitnesspal I did that. For me, though, cooking new recipes from scratch all the time, it was more of a pain in the bum to type in each recipe than the reward of seeing the calorie count would have been.

I have no suggestions for you in that area. So I will say that having some sort of goal a wedding, a half marathon is probably a good motivator. I don't know--still icy on the sidewalks so I'm not going to take the pup out for a 10 mile training walk this morning. Three miles will have to do. I'm so proud of you! Also, I can't go on something that eventually I have to "go off of".

I am learning moderation, portion control, all the things I need to work out in "real life. I love to cook, love to try WW recipies, and my family doesn't even know.

I am staying right here, and have now kept my weight off for 6 months, even during the holidays. Alanna you look wonderful! My husband and I went on Medifast a few years ago through a nurse at a hospital who guided us. We had to check in with her every week.

We lost a lot of weight, felt and looked great. I agree with many of your observations Of course, once we got "off" it we managed to regain much of it. That is not the fault of MF, but our bad habits returning. I am now WW'g with a friend Thanks for your honest sharing. You are indeed a blessing. I actually started low-carb whole food a few weeks ago and have felt really great.

I used to do Weight Watchers, and I did it faithfully, but it just didn't work for me. I mean, it's one of the most highly recommended and highly statistically successful programs. I know people who have lost pounds and inches and sizes. But for me, it wasn't right; my weight and size remained stagnant. It took a bit to realize that I didn't have to fit in with all those statistics.

Good on you for branching out and finding a different path to health. In the past I had lost quite a bit of weight by basically learning about food portions and making sure I didn't overdo any certain type of food. And I worked out. But once I went off program I gained all that weight back -- and another pounds on top of it. TSFL is a division of Medifast that comes with all sorts of free support and education that makes transitioning back to whole foods safe and easy.

It helps you retrain your brain so you don't go back to the unhealthy habits you had before. It's more about creating health for life hence its name than about losing weight as a short-term goal. I started Oct 2 and as of this posting I've lost 55 pounds. I think I safely fall into the category of "results not typical". It's amazing how great I feel -- how much energy I have, how my cravings have gone away, how I've broken my addictions from sugar and carbs, how I'm sleeping better Ive lost weight before, but nothing like this.

Nothing this fast or easy. That's worth a lot to me. A few thoughts on some of the objections: I wasn't excited about dehydrated food, either. But do you realize how much processed foods most of us use anyway?? Unless you're making your own breads, pastas, yogurts, growing your own veggies and fruits, etc etc, you are definitely eating a lot of processed foods, even if it's "healthy".

At least this food is formulated by doctors to be nutritionally balanced and healthy for you. I heard the price and laughed. But then I sat down and looked at how much I was spending on food: I ate a lot at my work's cafeteria or coffee bar. The portion of our grocery bill that was stuff I wouldn't use while on Medifast was huge. Suddenly the cost looked so much more manageable. Support on this program is free, unlike other weight loss programs so I was saving those fees as well.

Plus consider how much you spend on doctor co-pays, medicines, and how much you could spend ultimately in hospital and other medical bills if you don't lose the weight. If you've spent money on failing on other plans in the past, why keep going back?

The only way to know if you'll succeed on a different program is to try it. In the case of Medifast, if it's not the program for you, return your uneaten food and get most of your money back.

This program does not abandon you once you've reached your goal. It will teach you how to transition back into "real" foods again and then finally teach you how to use those real foods to keep the weight off and be healthy for life. And with TSFL -- the support is free to you for life, even if you're not using the Medifast products anymore.

Not a bad deal. Some of it I won't touch again. But a lot of it is really fairly decent and some of it I downright love And then for those foods you're not so crazy about, there are all sorts of creative people out there on the internet who find ways to prepare foods in completely different ways that do make them enjoyable.

For example, unlike Alanna, I can't stand the chocolate shakes. But they make a pretty decent cupcake! I never thought that a program that provides most of your food for me would ever work.

I LOVE fresh foods -- fruit in particular was hard for me to give up. When you see results like this as quickly as this, suddenly it's not quite the sacrifice. And I know when I reach my goal I get to have those foods again.

I love this journey and I love helping others reach their health goals as well. There's no better feeling than this!

Good for you for taking control of this, and I say whatever works! Great job so far!! However, once I had a little success with Medifast I was motivated to keep going.

Since starting my Medifast journey I have started exercising regularly, my foot pain from plantar fasciitis is all but gone along with all my other aches and pains and I no longer get migraines regularly. I have also started tracking all my food in MyFitnessPal and I will continue to do that after I get back to eating real food to help maintain my weight loss.

Yes - Medifast is not a perfect plan and I would much rather be eating fresh food that I prepare myself, however I needed this to help jump start positive changes in my health. I wish you continued success on Medifast and your journey to better health. I like it, thank you. And you're the second person today to mention a half marathon, good for you and Mark! It really is a life-saver for so many. Six months is excellent, stay with it! Good luck with doing WW with your friend, here's to both of you!

I so get that. I'm so glad you've found something that is working for you now. We have different ideas on what's processed food and what's not processed food, but I hear you on each of your points. And I'm so glad you brought up the long-term support, that was new to me.

I remember when we first knew one another and talked about the differences between Weight Watchers my way and South Beach yours. The weight isn't "melting off" me like it does for some on Medifast but still, each day when I get on the scale, each day when I feel bones I haven't felt in some years, I feel grateful. I would've expected better of you guys.

Your reasons for switching from WW to MF could have been written by me last summer. I had lost on WW, but the gained back exactly half of it, all the while attending meetings faithfully and sort of following the program.

When my daughter decided to try MF last January, I was supportive of her but skeptical of the meal replacements. She did really well, so I decided I would give it a try. I decided to commit to 2 months and see where I was. Well, 6 months later, I am still here and down 50 lbs. It isn't easy, but it certainly is simple. I am a longtime and, fortunately, a successful -- so far -- WW member , and I read you for inspiration and recipes.

I wish you nothing but the best with this and hope you will update us in your "journey. Meanwhile, keep on cookin' with Medifast. I'm glad you found a plan that works for you at this time. Thank you for your honesty and courage to write about your switch. Keep up your success. Looks like you don't have too much farther to go! My story is that 11 years ago I lost 40 pounds in about two months. It was too much too fast, but I was "ready", as you say, to just get rid of the weight.

I dieted and exercised the heck out of every day--eating very little. After losing the weight I felt better and ate normal, healthy meals. Over the last five years I have gained about 15 pounds. Reaching 40 was like a stopwatch to my metabolism. In November I picked up running to spend more time with fit family and friends. I am doing the "Run Double C25K"--an app to help you run a 5k in 9 weeks.

Since I have never ran a step in my life, this is a challenge, but I want to be healthier, fit, and to spend time with other healthy people to stay on track. I haven't lost one pound and use that as motivation to keep moving. Surely all those skinny runners looked just like me when they started! Alanna you look great and each of us will succeed using different methods, sometimes even the same methods at different times. Can't wait to hear more about your successes. Thanks for your honesty and for revealing that different things work for different people at different times of life.

A friend at work lost a lot of weight using Medifast and it's transformed her life--she even just went platinum blonde and is still slender after transitioning to mainly real food again--in her early 60s. I lost a little over 30 pounds counting calories in my early 40s when I developed hypertension and around 10 of them slipped back on with perimenopause I've figured out I need more protein now and less carbs. Hard realization for a carb lover, but my body is talking!

Thanks for the inspiration! And you size up the program exactly right, "It isn't easy, but it certainly is simple. I didn't realize you were a successful WW!! You've really got me thinking on that one This column inspired me to take a chance on a new program.

I've been considering going back to WW "again", to loose the 20 pounds which crept back over the last 6 months. But I'm a very picky eater, a great cook, and to top it off, help my neice operate her scratch bakery. Not a good weight loss combination. Since I am certain you are particular about food with a discerning palate would you be willing to share your favorite medifast "meals". It's a short list.

At first, I could tolerate the chicken noodle soup but I've got three boxes on hand and am having to force myself to eat one a day just to get rid of it. I like the spice pancakes and the chocolate pudding but don't order them because I really don't want to get used to sweet and carb-y things, which I didn't eat before and certainly don't want to get started on.

I hated the eggs. I hated the sloppy joes. I hated the vegetable soup. I liked so few things, I sent everything except shakes and bars back Medifast has a good return policy and stopped trying any others. I'm not bored with the shakes, they're filling, they help me drink more liquid, I like them hot and cold. I know that the Medifast forum is full of people who take the food and turn them into something else eg some today who doesn't like the chocolate shakes says that they make good brownies but I do not want to pretend this is "cooking" or "real food".

So I ignore those possibilities. For the record, I am NOT a picky eater with real food. While there are a few things I don't care for sweetbreads and Wonder bread or prefer cooked one way more than another boiled kale vs sauteed kale , it is rare for me to not like something.

The one thing I'd say is, do everything you can t take charge now at 20 pounds. Don't let it turn into 30 or 40 or worse. I wish I'd followed my own advice. Thank you for the article. I at a point where I really need to loose the weight-again-and keep it off this time. My health is affected by the extra weight. I know of other people who have chosen meal replacement programs with great success. My question to you which I can't find in the article is why this program and not Jenny Craig or Nutrisystem?

I was younger than 40 at the time and thought "not me!! To be honest, I was in my late 40s when I began to notice this. It wasn't just weight creeping up, it was that I didn't feel well eating like I did when I was younger. At about the same time I read about a group of people who maintained their health and had minimal weight gain throughout their lifetimes. It didn't prompt me to eat the way they did, but it did inspire me to find out how people in other countries and cultures ate.

There were a lot of similarities and some differences -- mostly in exactly what they ate. I also started thinking back to when I was growing up in the s and s -- when it was rare to see someone who was truly overweight. I was also in contact with older adults, many of whom weren't significantly overweight and had few health problems. I either observed or asked them about their eating habits. I started noticing some similarities. The slim, healthy people in other countries and the slim, relatively healthy older adults I saw had some things in common.

Most never ate processed foods. If they did, they were consumed rarely. And contrary to the advice now to snack throughout the day, most never snacked. If they did snack it was only once a day. Among the older adults, those who were slim ate less than they had when they were younger.

Not little enough to be malnourished, but definitely less than when they were in their prime. I eat three meals daily and rarely snack. About the only time I snack is if a meal is going to be significantly late.

I do eat less at meals. Two of my meals, usually breakfast and lunch, tend to be smaller and one is larger. I don't feel deprived because I'm satisfied with how much and what I eat. There's nothing I don't eat, but many things that I don't eat often. If I really want something, I have it. I also have a general plan of what to eat at meals. I'm also a fan of Michael Pollan's mantra: I've found that I don't need to eat as much real food to be satisfied.

Another thing I learned is that it's perfectly normal, in fact, somewhat necessary, for a woman to gain pounds from the time she's about 20 until her mids.

It has to do with reproduction. This has been observed throughout the world and throughout history. It's even observed in art where maidens are slim and matrons are, well, more matronly. Part of the reason it may be hard for those of us "of a certain age" to lose weight is that we're not supposed to weigh the same as when we were younger.

Alanna, I wish you the best of luck on Medi-Fast! A couple of years ago my friend lost 40 pounds on the program, at the same time I was losing 20 lbs on Jenny Craig.

Two years later, she's gained 35 lbs back, and I've gained Since I've gone vegan 9 months ago none of those "packaged" plans will work for me, they all rely on animal protein of some sort. However, if you "use" Medifast as a jumping point and maintain from there, awesome! I just couldn't do it, call me a packaged diet failure. Alanna, you look wonderful! I really enjoyed your story.

I'ts similar to mine. I lost 80lbs and my husband lost lbs on WW about 12 years ago. I am a lifetime member and even worked for WW as a meeting leader for a year quit because a new job forced me to travel a lot. However, like many of us, I've gained the weight back. I wanted to do Medifast for a while, but I was worried that it really didn't teach about how to cook or eat.

It, like many other weight loss programs, just gives you the food to eat to lose weight. I liked learning what a portion is i. However, my sister-in-law pointed out something to me. She said, "You worked for WW, you know how much to eat, how to cook, and what you should do.

You're just having a hard time doing it. If you're goal is to lose weight and feel better, Medifast can help you do that. Then implement what you know you should do to keep it off. I just was having a hard time doing the WW plan; too "open" for me right now.

So, on to Medifast. I've lost 38lbs in 3 months and I haven't had one issue following the plan. Thanks so much for your post and inspraition. So glad you posted this! As it turned out, I just got back from a trip and started on Medifast yesterday for the first time the package arrived while I was away. Love the tip about making the shake with coffee.

I'll definitely try that. I don't have a lot of weight to lose only about 15 pounds , but have just not been able to motivate myself to reduce my food intake enough to get rid of it. I think that putting myself on a diet like this where I have specific food to eat each day is the kind of structure I need to jump-start my weight loss. I usually eat well fresh foods from scratch, with lots of lean protein and veggies, not many sweets , so the idea of the pre-packaged food wasn't all that exciting to me.

I just bought the 2-week variety pack to try it out. If it works out OK, I'll order more. Since I don't need to lose a lot, I don't expect to be on it for more than a few months. If I find it hard to stick with it for a long stretch of time, perhaps I'll try alternating the Medifast food with home-cooked food on alternate weeks or even alternate days. As long as I'm lowering my overall food intake, I should still lose weight, though more slowly, of course.

Congratulations on your weight loss, and sticking with it! It's a great inspiration to me. Hi Alanna--I left a message on your blog but I guess it was after you closed it to comments. I am just wondering why you chose medifast over other meal replacement systems like Nutrisystem or Jenny Craig. Congrats on your weight loss--I hope to be down 20 to 30 lbs by this summer.