How the current myWW+ (Weight Watchers Reimagined) point system works: Understanding the WW point system is crucial to potential success on the diet.
The WW point system has undergone a few significant changes over the years, but basically, it’s the same concept: you count points instead of calories to lose weight.
Here’s all about the WW point system, and how it works:
The Weight Watchers Point System (FreeStyle, myWW+)
WW replaced the FreeStyle program with “myWW+,” and it also uses a point system based on counting “SmartPoints.”
When you join WW you’re given a points “budget” based on a number of criteria including your height and weight which you spend each day on food. Members then track their food in the WW app after each meal, and your new point balance is instantly calculated.
As you can guess, healthy foods cost fewer points, and unhealthy foods will cost more. In fact, WW believes that there are a number of healthy foods that shouldn’t cost any points at all. As a result, the myWW+ point system includes “Zero-Point foods.”
Another significant update to the points system is called, “Points Rollover.” WW learned that people’s daily eating can vary and that their plan had to be more flexible to accommodate this.
Now you can roll over up to 4 unused Daily SmartPoints to Weekly SmartPoints for later that week when you need more, like travel, holidays, eating out, or happy hour. These Weekly SmartPoints don’t rollover to subsequent weeks, so use them or lose them!
How WW SmartPoints Work:
Calories are just one part of the SmartPoints equation. Sugar, and saturated fat also increase the SmartPoints value of food, while positive factors like protein reduce the number of points in food. (Protein is good!)
The WW app contains a database of thousands of foods and drinks as well as menu items from popular restaurants for easy reference and point-tracking.
For example, grilled salmon with a baked potato and veggies might only cost 7 SmartPoints, while a cheeseburger and fries will cost you 25 points. (Yikes!)
The point system is WW’s way of encouraging smart food choices, and healthy eating habits that should last a lifetime. Just stay within your points budget and the math says you’ll lose weight!
How Do I Find SmartPoints Value?
Every food has a serving size and SmartPoints value with Weight Watchers. There are 3 ways to find the SmartPoints value of food using the WW app:
- Scan the barcode of packaged food
- Search the WW database of food like “quinoa” and choose serving size
- Search restaurant menus
- Enter the amount of protein, calories, sugar, carbs, and saturated fat per serving yourself
Now let’s talk about how many SmartPoints you are allowed each day.
How Many Weight Watchers Points Per Day?
When you first join Weight Watchers, you’ll be asked a few questions about your weight, height, sex, and age, which will help them better understand your metabolism and dietary needs.
Based on this information WW then assigns you to one of 3 color plans (Blue, Green, or Purple) and calculates an optimal daily SmartPoints allowance for you. So, how many WW points do you get per day?
Most people get a SmartPoints budget of between 15-30 SmartPoints per day plus Weeklies that you can use during the week if you exceed your daily budget. Those who are taller and/or more active generally get more points. As a middle-aged 5′ 3″ female I was given a budget of 16 SmartPoints per day.
Want more Smart Points? Then get active!
Earn WW FitPoints:
Exercise can earn you “FitPoints,” which are converted to extra SmartPoints in the WW app. You’ll get about 1 extra SmartPoint for every 10 minutes of exercise.
FitPoints are a great incentive to be more active. If that glass of wine is out of your budget, go for a walk or do a yoga class to earn it!
If you stay within your points budget, you should experience steady weight loss at a healthy and sustainable pace. Typical weight loss on Weight Watchers is about 1 to 2 pounds per week. (source)
Tracking Weight Watchers Points on the WW App:
The most important habit to develop when you’re on Weight Watchers is accurately tracking your Smart Points every day, preferably after each meal. WW has made this a snap with their app; here’s how it works:
You can also access all of WW resources from the app, including the “Weight Watchers Connect” community. It’s a social network of supportive women and men who are on WW just like you.
WW has a huge database of foods, including popular restaurant menu items.
Just tap the “+” on the app to track your food after each meal!
The corresponding SmartPoints will be calculated and tracked, so you’ll always know your current point totals.
*Want to see a list of the 99 most tracked foods on the WW app?
WW SmartPoints vs Points Plus: What’s the Difference?
So, what’s the difference between PointsPlus and SmartPoints?
The PointsPlus point system ran from 2011-2017, but as of 2020, the standard WW program is myWW+, which uses the SmartPoints point system. This new point system replaced the old system, which was called PointsPlus.
It seems that with the new version of their program, WW is trying to get dieters to eat less sugar and saturated fat, and more protein. Because of this, they scrapped the Points Plus system and introduced the new “Smart Points” formula for calculating points.
The new myWW+ program (using SmartPoints) also gives 100+ foods zero points in the point-system, including fruits and vegetables. This is their way of telling you to eat more of them!
The WW Point System: The Key to Success on myWW+
Since 1963, the WW plan has helped millions of people around the world lose weight and successfully keep it off. Ironically, one of the biggest reasons for the plan’s success is that it is based on the premise that diets usually don’t work.
Unlike other commercial diets, like Nutrisystem, prepared meals are not delivered. However, like Noom, no foods are off-limits. (they’ll just cost you more points!) The cost is also a lot less upfront, but you’ll be buying all your own food.
Thinking of joining WW?
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