For all you Weight Watchers® out there, you have probably heard that after years of PointsPlus®, Weight Watchers® is updating their program and introducing a brand new SmartPoints™ system and plan. Since I include points with all of my recipes and meal plans and know that many of you follow Weight Watchers®, I wanted to highlight some of the big changes to the new SmartPoints™ plan and also share about how it will affect things here at Slender Kitchen.
Let's start by looking at some of the major changes to the plan, including Weight Watchers SmartPoints™ and FitPoints®.
- PointsPlus® is now SmartPoints™: On the new plan, PointsPlus® have been retired and SmartPoints™ are the new way that food is counted and tracked. SmartPoints are calculated using calories, saturated fat, sugar, and protein. In the SmartPoints™, high amounts of sugar and saturated fats mean higher points and higher amounts of protein means lower points. That means that many lean proteins like chicken and seafood have lower point values than before and things like cookies and desserts have higher points values than they did previously.
- Focus on Healthier Eating: The overall change to SmartPoints™ and the way points are calculated is to encourage healthier choices overall. In the PointsPlus systems, it was possible to find lots of "unhealthy" choices with low points values. In the new system, these choices have higher points values due to the amount of sugar and saturated fat they contain.
- New Daily Points Allowance: Under the new plan, most people will find they they are allowed more SmartPoints™ daily. The minimum daily points target is now 30 SmartPoints™ so anyone under 30 daily points will now have more. For those members above 30, your daily points target may increase slightly or stay the same.
- Weekly (Flex) Points Changed: Under the previous plan, everyone was given 49 weekly points to use however they wanted. In the new plan, this number is adjusted based on your activity level, weight loss goals, age, gender, and other factors. New weekly points targets range from around 21 SmartPoints™ to 49 SmartPoints™.
- Fruits and Vegetables are Zero in the Recipe Calculator: This is one of the changes I am most excited about. All fruits and vegetables are now calculated as zero in the recipe calculator. For example, adding fruit to an oatmeal dish or veggies to a stir-fry will no longer mean extra points. There is one exception to this when it comes to smoothies and fruit that has been processed. This will continued to be counted based on the nutritional info and there is a small bo to check in the recipe calculator to indicate the fruit is being blended.
- Activity Points are now FitPoints®: FitPoints® have replaced Activity Points in the new program and are caluclated on all different kinds of activity from daily chores to more rigorous planned exercise. Weekly you will be have new FitPoint goals and they are calculated using a new formula.
Overall I am personally really excited about the new plan. I love that the focus has shifted to making healthier choices and that items like lean proteins now have lower points. I am also incredibly happy that fruits and vegetables no longer counted in the recipe calculator. And more points daily? That sounds great. With that said, I am also a bit nervous. I have a soft spot for sweets so I am nervous about how many more points they will have. I am also always nervous that I may not lose weight in the same way on a new plan.
What are your most excited about in the new plan? What's making you nervous?
And now the SK question, will I be updating the recipes on Slender Kitchen to reflect the new SmartPoints® system? Absolutely! For all of the previous recipes, I am going to be adding the SmartPoints values in addition to the PointsPlus values that are already there. I will be starting with 2015 recipes and working my way backwards as quickly as possible.
In terms of new recipes, I will be including SmartPoints™ for future recipes since I will no longer have a way to calculate PointsPlus®. Meal plans will also begin to show the updated SmartPoints starting next week.
Have other questions? Please leave them in the comments!