The Weight Watchers Approach: What It Is, the Advantages and Disadvantages

The Weight Watchers Approach: What It Is, the Advantages and Disadvantages
Saúl Sánchez Arias

Written and verified by the nutritionist Saúl Sánchez Arias.

Last update: 18 April, 2023

The Weight Watchers diet aims to promote weight loss in the healthiest way possible. We are talking about an approach that could generate a reduction in body mass of around one kilo (two pounds) per week.

This is one of the protocols that many celebrities have implemented and that has allowed them to achieve good results. However, before we start, we should mention that it’s just as important to lose weight as it is to keep it off as the months go by.

Most diets fail because they don’t change our habits and because they do not generate good adherence in the medium term. Frustration will eventually set in and, with it, a subsequent rebound effect. It’s better to look for less rapid advances in a longer period of time that are consistent and solid.

What is the Weight Watchers diet?

As we have mentioned, the Weight Watchers diet aims to cause positive changes in the state of body composition. To do so, it focuses on the consumption of lean and fresh foods, with little processing.

It gives great importance to proteins, which are key elements to prevent muscle loss and the development of complex pathologies such as sarcopenia. This is evidenced by research published in the journal BioMed Research International .

On the other hand, it suggests eating vegetables on a daily basis, both fruits and vegetables. These foods contain several essential micronutrients and phytochemicals that help neutralize the formation of free radicals and their accumulation in the tissues.

This effect has been shown to be key to preventing the onset of diseases that affect health, such as cardiovascular diseases and cancer.

It’s also essential to achieve a sufficient intake of good-quality fats. These are found in foods such as oily fish, extra virgin olive oil, nuts, and avocado. As they are unsaturated, they help modulate inflammation in the internal environment.

It’s recommended to prioritize above all omega-3 fats, as they protect against alterations in homeostasis, as stated in a study published in Biomedicine & Pharmacotherapy .

¿En qué consiste la dieta Weight Watchers?
The Weight Watchers diet proposes an eating plan based on fresh and lean foods.

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Foods to avoid

This approach is committed to avoiding processed foods, sugary drinks, and sweet or pastry items in particular. All contain high concentrations of simple sugars, which negatively affect the functioning of the metabolism.

Regular consumption of these items is associated with an increased incidence of type 2 diabetes, which goes hand in hand with obesity. On the other hand, most ultra-processed foods are a source of trans fatty acids. Unlike cis fatty acids, these have inflammatory properties.

They affect the efficiency of the immune system and can promote failures in cell replication or mitochondrial processes. It’s therefore crucial to reduce their presence in the diet as much as possible.

In any case, it’s advisable to limit the intake of all these foodstuffs, without completely eliminating them. Let’s say that adherence to the guideline is sought through variety, without prohibiting and without causing anxiety in people who follow it.

Also, the preparation of your weekly menu itself will be determined by certain aspects such as age, sex, and weight loss goals of the person.

Carne procesada
This dietary model suggests avoiding the consumption of ultra-processed foods as much as possible.

No diet is enough on its own

Despite the above, it should be noted that a diet alone isn’t enough to lose weight. It will also be decisive to promote regular physical exercise. Otherwise, in many cases, the expected results will not be achieved.

This is because muscle is the most metabolically active tissue. If it’s not present in the body in sufficient quantities, it will be almost impossible to establish an energy deficit that will allow fat to be oxidized.

Among the types of activity that can be performed, priority should be given to strength work and high-intensity intervallic work. These are the ones that cause the greatest positive variations in the state of body composition.

Like this article? You may also like to read: 7 Strategies to Lose Weight Without a Restrictive Diet

Weight Watchers approach, a mechanism for weight loss

Overall, the Weight Watchers approach offers a healthy alternative for weight loss based on the consumption of fresh food. Although not discussed above, it’s also essential to avoid alcoholic beverages. These are a source of empty calories and can cause health problems.

To conclude, keep in mind that some people are not able to lose weight efficiently due to genetic or microbiota-related issues. Therefore, do not despair.

Obesity and weight gain are complex health problems that need to be treated in a sustained manner over time. The good news is that science is making more and more discoveries in this regard and raising awareness of the important role our overall health plays when it comes to weight loss.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Martone AM, Marzetti E, Calvani R, et al. Exercise and Protein Intake: A Synergistic Approach against Sarcopenia. Biomed Res Int. 2017;2017:2672435. doi:10.1155/2017/2672435
  • Neha K, Haider MR, Pathak A, Yar MS. Medicinal prospects of antioxidants: A review. Eur J Med Chem. 2019;178:687-704. doi:10.1016/j.ejmech.2019.06.010
  • Simopoulos AP. The importance of the ratio of omega-6/omega-3 essential fatty acids. Biomed Pharmacother. 2002;56(8):365-379. doi:10.1016/s0753-3322(02)00253-6

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.