Watching The Weightposted by : Jon Kroupa on 05/29/2011
Related Comic: Watch It Grow
This past week I tried the Weight Watchers diet, which uses the fabled point system.
The basic point system is computed using the number of calories divided by 50, plus the grams of fat divided by 12, minus the grams of fiber (up to 4) divided by 5. Weight Watchers recently came out with their Points Plus system, which uses a different formula based on protein, carbs, fiber, and fat to derive points, this system often gives the same point value or one higher than the old system. Searching online you can find charts which layout many common food items and their point values.
If I had to sum up the Weight Watchers diet in one word I would say starvation. I originally tried to give myself only 33 points a day. Using a free calculator online that was the suggested amount for someone of my height, weight, sex, and a sedentary lifestyle. I actually feel like I live an active lifestyle, in that I now exercise 4-6 days every week, but I felt like I would have the maximum gain if I used the minimum points.
This is by far the hungriest diet week I have had yet. It was quite a treat to suddenly be allowed to eat whatever I wanted again. I ate things such as bread and candy, which I had avoided for weeks, and it was nice. Unfortunately the points run out quite quickly, and I soon discovered that I was going to bed hungry every night. To combat this I would delay my dinner in the evening so I could be less hungry when it was time to go to sleep.
As the week went on I found myself creeping my points up to 35 a day, I was simply getting very tired of always being famished. If we subtract 1 point from my daily average and multiply that by 50 we get a rough estimate of around 1700 calories a day. This is a lot less than when I was calorie counting.
I lost 2 pounds this week on the starvation diet. Since starting random dieting at the beginning of April I've lost nearly 20 pounds (19.6). I only wish I had more to show for it. I still have what I feel is quite a bit of fat on my stomach. It is probably smaller than it was 9 weeks ago, but on a daily basis it is difficult to see the difference.