New Weight Watchers® SmartPoints™ Program

By Kristen Mccaffrey on
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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!

20 Comments
On New Weight Watchers® SmartPoints™ Program
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Cindy Hornosky
January 10, 2019 - 14:48
Do all recipes follow Whole 30 rules (not including any corn, beans, etc)?
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alice bruns
October 17, 2018 - 19:42
I am starting ww again and want to do smart points I need recipes with smart points Hopeing you can help me ty
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Becky Marshall
May 4, 2018 - 13:00
I need to lose 10- 15 lbs. I have IBS and my weight may be anywhere between 164 and 167. Help me. I am ready to get this weight off. I want to start tomorrow. I was a lifetime member for weight watchers but really just need a plan with different menus for every day. I do have my old weight watchers book and according to it I only get 18 points. That does not sound right. I just need help. If you tell me a menu I will follow it. I am desperate. I am 65 years old and want to feel the best I can.

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Eileen Strobel
December 16, 2015 - 05:15
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5
Thank you so much for explaining every thing so clearly.
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Cathy Grabowski
December 15, 2015 - 13:42
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5
Thank you for this update on Weightwatchers. I attended my first meeting on the new system and while a little confused, I see lots of positive things. When I take better care of myself, everything goes better, so their program makes sense.

I've been stuck on those last few pounds for several years. I'm hoping with the new system and your amazing site/blog/ recipes this is my time to succeed.
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Pat Howe
December 13, 2015 - 10:45
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4
Thanks for all your help.
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December 9, 2015 - 07:25
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5
Thanks so much Kristen for the thorough explanation! You're the best and thank you for your willingness to update the recipes for Smart Points!
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August 2, 2016 - 04:23
Oops....sorry. This was a mistake. Thought this was spam in my mail.
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August 1, 2016 - 16:16
STOP!!!
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May 21, 2016 - 08:49
I am now back at WW and on the new smart points system. I absolutely love it! I have had so much success so far. My fit bit is synced with it. It inspires me to move.
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lesliepantazis1...
February 22, 2016 - 13:12
Good luck, Cheryl! I think I will have to eventually give the new Smart Points Plan a good try, but I want to lose a significant amount of weight first.
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lesliepantazis1...
January 19, 2016 - 08:05
Kudos to sticking it out. I gave it about 3 days until I went back to Points Plus. I know eventually, I'll go to Smart Points, but I know it's just not feasible for me to at this point in my life in order for me to successfully lose the weight I need to. My newest fear, though, as I continue to use the Points Plus plan, is when I achieve weight loss milestones and am called upon at my weekly WW meeting, lol. I don't want to lie and say "yeah, Smart Points is great!", but I don't want to discourage anyone and sound negative by admitting the truth that I don't like the new plan, and continue to use PP. Oh well, I guess time will tell. Good luck to you!
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lesliepantazis1...
January 8, 2016 - 20:51
I tried one of the free apps and didn't like it, so I opted to purchase a more comprehensive one. It's working great!
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lesliepantazis1...
January 8, 2016 - 20:50
I'm sure WW corporate is hearing this feedback. They have to be. I don't know if we can make a diff, but we are not alone. I downloaded loaded an app that calculates Points Plus. Check out the Google play store or apps for your iPhone and find one. I refuse to use the new Smart Points plan.
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January 1, 2016 - 14:32
Yes! Thank you so much! You are my new "go-to"!
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December 28, 2015 - 06:50
I like the new plan. I was on a plateau for about a year and I think it was because I had started consuming more of the food that I shouldn't be eating on a daily basis. I have worked the new plan so that I can stay within my daily and have 2 special occasion treats weekly. I really don't need much more of the high sugar, fat stuff anyways.
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lesliepantazis1...
December 18, 2015 - 19:22
There are apps for both android and iPhone that you can download for a couple bucks, where you can continue to track points plus. That's what I'm doing. It's more manual, but it's worth it to me to continue to be successful. Good luck to you!
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lesliepantazis1...
December 14, 2015 - 14:49
Personally, I'm finding this new Smart Points plan to be quite difficult and almost unmanageable. I wish they'd let WW members have a choice as to whether to stay on the Points Plus plan or do Smart Points. I'm a busy, full-time working wife and mother of two young children who relies on easy, convenient meal and snack choices. For example, while on WW, I've always relied on Lean Cuisines (or an equivalent brand) for my lunch choices. On Points Plus, the majority of these meals were about 7-8 points. Now, those same meals are 10-12 points on Smart Points plan. That's just not OK with me. I was already incorporating more fruits and veggies in my every-day diet while on Points Plus and was highly successful at losing weight. So, why fix something that isn't broken? The fact that I was successful on Points Plus just makes this new plan entirely frustrating and discouraging for me. I'd like to be given the choice as to which plan I want to go on at this point, and sadly, the Smart Points plan may actually end up resulting in me cancelling my WW membership.
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December 11, 2015 - 12:06
Hi Anne! We are going to do our best to continue to share PointsPlus with all the recipes as long as we are able to calculate them accurately.
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December 9, 2015 - 15:58
I hear you! I also love sweets so I am a bit nervous about how those will fit in. I am hoping since other foods I eat often have lower points values now (like chicken breast, lean pork, lean beef, etc.) it will balance out and I will be able to use those points for sweets :)