It is a fact that obesity is a major problem in the United States and is the cause of many illnesses ranging from diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. The diet industry makes billions of dollars every year from Americans looking to lose weight.
Weight Watchers, NutriSystem, and Jenny Craig are among the top diet programs in the country and they have some serious superstar power to back them up. But which diet would work best for you?
Jennifer Hudson captured the hearts of many Americans when she lost in the final rounds on American Idol, a popular television series. She went on to win an Academy Award for her riveting performance in Dreamgirls and sold over a million albums. Struggling with weight issues throughout her life, Mrs. Hudson managed to lose a whopping eighty pounds with Weight Watchers.
Weight Watchers allows you to eat whatever you want, provided that you stick to your daily Points Plus target, which is based on your gender, weight, height, and age. Every food has a Points Plus value based on the amount of protein, carbs, fat, and fiber it contains. You have a choice to attend in-person meetings or attend meetings online for support. Weight Watchers also has a program designed for men and Weight Watchers At Work; a program for companies that encourages employees to eat healthier at work.
Some people found counting points to be extremely time consuming. Other complaints ranged from not promoting a strong emphasis on fitness to not providing a special program for customers with diabetes.
But Weight Watchers has built a strong reputation over the last forty years. US News also ranked it number one for Best Commercial Diets in 2011. Allowing one to eat whatever they want and not having to purchase pre-planned meals is a huge plus with consumers.
“Now I have pizza all the time. I have whatever I want…it’s just how to have it. Before I started Weight Watchers I hadn’t had pizza in over 10 years because I had the diet mentality which clearly did not work,” stated Jennifer in a 2012 interview with The Huffington Post.
Trying to stand out in a large and talented family like the Jacksons could be a difficult feat to accomplish, but not for Janet Jackson. Selling over a hundred million records, Ms. Jackson is one of the best selling artists in the history of contemporary music. Janet Jackson has also suffered with a life long issue of keeping her weight under control. “It’s about keeping it off. We can all lose weight, but learning how to keep it off–maintaining it–is what’s difficult. NutriSystem teaches you how to do that,” Janet stated in an article for Essence magazine.
NutriSystem offers a hassle-free way to diet with its pre-planned meal delivery service. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even snacks are calorie controlled and prepared for you. All you have to do is pop your meal in the microwave and get ready to eat. All of the foods have a low glycemic index, low in saturated and trans fats, and sodium. NutriSystem also offers plans for a variety of groups such as men, diabetics, and vegetarians. Flexibility is another plus that consumers are looking for when choosing the perfect diet. For the single mother looking for economic value or the choosy urban professional looking for premium taste, NutriSystem has a plan for you.
But some have complained about the portion sizes being too small or the food having absolutely no taste. US News ranked NutriSystem among the worst for long-term weight loss. Price was also a concern among people wanting to try the program. Some plans ranged between $300-$350 a month. With many dieters having families to feed, one must factor in the cost of a monthly grocery bill along with the cost of the program.
Still, those looking for flexibility, NutriSystem could be a winner. “You don’t have to deprive yourself of things that you love, and that’s what’s so great about NutriSystem.” Ms. Jackson stated.
Valerie Bertinelli, child actress and “Queen of the Made-for-TV Movie” knows first hand what it’s like to struggle with losing weight.
“I had done diets ‘for me’ for so many years, but this time, for the first time, I thought I needed to be held accountable,” said Bertinelli in an interview with Fitness magazine. She teamed up with Jenny Craig and lost an incredible forty pounds.
Jenny Craig is known for its pre-packaged and portion controlled meals. Unlike other programs, you are provided with a one on one counselor to help you manage your weight. You are given a personalized meal and fitness plan tailored to your needs. You can attend weekly meetings and pick up your food at one of 640 locations around the globe. Or you can get the same help over the phone and have your meals delivered to your front door. The program also has plans for men, teens, and senior citizens.
Many have complained about the cost of the program. According to the website, the cost could set you back $100-$130 weekly. Others complained that the low calorie diet was too strict and didn’t allow for a lot of flexibility that other programs offered.
However, Jenny Craig has been a trusted name in diet programs for over twenty years. Many women can resonate with Valerie’s personal struggle with her weight. She even gets emotional at one point in a commercial, informing viewers how she found happiness while on the program. “Jenny did more than just help me lose weight. I was given the information that changed my life and is still helping me today, long after I finished the program,” she stated on the Jenny Craig website.
One could make the argument that almost any diet you can name will help you lose weight. While these superstars were able to accomplish amazing weight loss goals, one must remain practical and use common sense when deciding which plan is best for you. Reducing caloric intake, exercising on a regular basis, cutting down on foods high in sugar and fats, and good old common sense works just as well. It is also recommended that you consult with your doctor first before attempting any diet and exercise regimen.
Committing yourself to a simple plan can give you your very own success story and make you feeling and looking like a superstar in your own life.