Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Is WW's new Pro Points plan pro overeating?

So the venerable Weight Watchers has finally caught on to the fact that it is necessary for any diet to be 'realistic' if people are not to 'fall off the wagon'. They've finally accepted that we're not imbeciles: we all know that if we eat 'sensibly' and 'in moderation' and make 'healthy choices' we will lose weight. We know this because we've been at it for years and because it's been rammed into us from the moment we could say "KitKat".  They have finally admitted that restriction and deprivation lead to overeating.  Their solution? Simples: it's fine to stuff yourself with as much fruit or veg as you can shove down your gullet as they are worth 0 points (in fact, it's positively encouraged) and you get an extra 49 free binge points (they are actually called 'extra weekly allowance' points) which you can use to 'blow out' on things like 4 Mc Donalds double cheese burgers or two and half bottles of wine or - just as likely - a secret rendez-vous with a stash of Cadbury's. (Apologies for the excessive use of quotes - I just want to be clear these are WW expressions, not ours!)

Great. So it's fine to pig out, just make sure it's on carrot sticks and apple slices...and the occasional fast food binge. Or you could always get drunk.  And I'm sure there will soon be a brand spanking new 'Pro Points' snacks range - each worth 7 points. Handy that - you can buy a 'treat' for every day of the week and overeat that way if you want instead.

It's incredible but it seems that the new Pro Points plan actually encourages overeating. As always, they assume that the flaw is in the dieter rather than the diet. Perish the thought that they should come to the realisation that the reason why nearly all of the women who go on a diet fail is because the diets DON'T WORK! The Pro Points plan is absurd - it keeps women stuck in an eternal cycle of 'being good' and 'being naughty' and perpetuates overeating - the very thing that keeps us overweight.

But it doesn't stop there. Overeating keeps us stuck in a vicious cycle of feeling ashamed and out of control and guilty and we know from personal experience and from the thousands of women we've worked with here at Beyond Chocolate that this causes as much misery as being overweight.  Overeating is overeating, whether you're bingeing on carrot sticks or carrot cake the result is the same: you feel bad about yourself...and eat some more. On and on, round and round....

We've just launched our new Stop Overeating Ecourse to put an end to all of that. If you want to stop overeating (and consequently lose weight),  stop feeling out of control around food, stop trying to use willpower to eat less and stop counting points then join us and the hundreds of women who have already signed up to start in January 2011. Start 2011 with a different mindset, we promise you won't regret it.


  1. I'm sure there's a neat expression that sums up what WW has done - something like, 'different day, same sh*t'! Someone put me right on what the expression actually is, please. Whatever, you get the picture - WW hasn't come up with a new plan, they've just tweaked their old one and poor desperate dieters will still be counting points and 'cheating' and saving points and 'borrowing' points from tomorrow ... and the diet will STILL fail them ... Hooray for Beyond Chocolate and an end to the diet madness!

  2. ...And they (the 'poor desperate dieters') will still be obsessed with food and weight and body image, and they will STILL put on weight during or after WW, because bingeing on carrots is still a way of getting too many calories into a body that doesn't want more than it needs!

  3. I must admit that I did a two week trial on the new ProPoints plan to see what it was all about - I absolutely hated it. They may give you 'extra' ProPoints to use but I found I HAD to use some of the extra points every day to stop myself from feeling so bloody hungry! I didn't fancy fresh fruit (which is 'free'), I fancied dried fruit (which is not free) so therefore I used more 'ProPoints' each day. I can't believe I was nearly sucked in by this system...

  4. COME ON! stop the WW bashing!
    Beyond Chocolate has the best philosophy for creating a healthy and happy relationship with food. End of.
    Bashing another group - even a huge, pervasive one - is, to my mind, not useful.
    It comes across - to me - like BC doesnt quite have confidence in itself without smugly comparing itself to someone else. Stop!!
    You (we) are doing fine as we are - people find BC when it is right. bashing WW won't speed up the process.

  5. I just had a client start with me this week because she has done WW for years and years and hasn't had time to read up on the 'new' diet and so is too ashamed to go to the meetings because for her it feels like another reason to feel inferior to the ones who are 'doing it right'! I wonder how many other people are feeling like that too.

  6. This post is just ridiculous! I agree that diets fail but weight watchers is not a diet it encourages healthy eating! The extra points are there for you to be able to cope with real life situations like a meal out with friends or some wine at the weekend allowing small indulgences but ensuring that the indulgences don't go over board.

    If you stick to weightwatchers it works....FACT! Rather than slating WW perhaps the powers that be at this site should take some inspiration from it

  7. Yes, dieting works - if you do it for the rest of your life.
    If you are prepared to do that - fine, if not, we'll be here waiting when you do finally realise that the diets are failures and Beyond Chocolate is the only way out of the madness and into sanity.

  8. Thanks everyone for your thoughts and comments - all and always welcome. Our thoughts on the comments on 2nd December blog post: Diets and politics - have a read!

  9. I've done WW and have lost a stone; kept it off, and found the whole thing fairly civilised. It has you thinking differently about food and makes you realistic about how much you can eat without being overweight. I feel pretty good about the whole thing having lost weight and having found a healthier eating pattern. and I still eat chocolate :)

  10. I was honestly quite shocked to read this. I have been doing WW for 6 months now and found it really beneficial if you used the concept correctly! They have the buffer points for a reason and if you actually read what that was rather then giving your theory you would see it is to HELP people. As previously mentioned it is for occasions that crop up out of our control such as birthdays, christmas, celebrations etc. In a nut shell - rather then eating a meal out, feeling like you have messed up your diet, and then thinking oh what the heck I will throw the towel in - you use your extra points and continue as normal the following day! The weekly points are saved by WW for you....example you are entitled to 29 points a day, add 7 points (one days worth of the weekly points - 49 divided by 7 days = 7wp) THAT is your actual daily allowance. WW have just saved the points for you. Its about being balanced not faddy and it also allows for real life getting in the way once in a while.


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