WW Math-what Wiki says about points

Written by april485 on 7/28/2011 7:24 AM | COMMENTS (18)

After reading many posts on the message boards about Points v. Points Plus and how many of the people who began WW prior to the introduction of Points Plus have gone back to the old Points system for various reasons I was intrigued by it all.

Several veteran WW have stated that if you don't really change the way you eat, the programs are identical. It is a pain to have to memorize the new Points for the various foods for sure, but other than that, the programs are the same. You get more points but the point values for the foods are generally higher. I have no basis for comparison since I have only been following WW since January when Points Plus was in full swing.

The formula for calculating how many points per day a person gets is based on these four factors (source Wikipedia) Height, Weight, Age, Gender. This has often baffled people. Whenever I tell anyone on the boards that I have been assigned 29 Daily Points (which has been my number since Day One) and that my original goal was to lose 105 pounds, they are very surprised by that. Since 29 is the lowest points anyone is ever assigned on the Points Plus program, the plus side to this is that I will never know the joy (or agony) of losing a point after dropping pounds. Most people start with many more points than this on the 100+ to lose board where I hang out.

I know why I have been assigned this point total. I am older, (56) I am short, 5'0", I am female and my starting weight was under the threshold (225 lbs) for an assignment of more points. According to Wikipedia, the points of a specific food are the equivalent of anywhere from 35-45 calories for each point assigned while the Points program assumed 50 calories per point, give or take. The points assigned to anyone, which could be from 29-71, according to Wikipedia are based on creating a 1,000 calorie per day deficit. So, 29 points equates to around the minimum daily requirement anyone should ever eat while dieting which is 1,200 calories, give or take based on the formula of 35-45 calories per point.

As anyone knows, exercise burns calories and so racking up AP's allows you to lose weight a bit faster and also will allow you to eat a little more. The Weekly points add anywhere from 245 to 315 calories a day, based on dividing those 49 WP up at 7 per day. This is still a low amount of calories coupled with the approximately 1,200 that WW assigns to me with the DP value of 29. That is why you can generally (everyone is different) eat those Weekly Points and still lose weight at the safe rate of 1/2 to 2 pounds per week. Especially if you add in activity to your week which of course creates a further calorie deficit.

Whichever program you follow, you can lose weight safely and steadily on this program WITHOUT sacrificing the things you love. WW just changed the formula to encourage people to eschew those 100 calorie snack packs in favor of eating more fruit and vegetables by making them 0 points (most veggies, not all as corn and peas and all starchy veggies have point values) They are 0 points, not 0 calories.

This tends to be where people get a bit confused. They wish to encourage the consumption of these fruits and vegetables as studies have shown that people would rather snack on cookies if there is a point value assigned than an apple or a plum. All things being equal in terms of points on the old point system, who wouldn't? But, the caveat here is that as I said above. Fruit is 0 Points but is NOT 0 calories!

If you eat 15 servings of fruit a day, you can and often do gain weight. It can also render you too full to eat your Daily Points Allowance which is the minimum you should be eating in order to realize optimum nutrition! If you are following the Good Healthy Guidelines of the 8 items, such as fruits and veggies, liquids, healthy o ils, dairy, protein, whole grains and your daily vitamin, you are eating a balanced and sensible diet that will allow you to lose no matter what your Daily Target is.

Math class over!

Categories: FoodGeneralMy weight loss

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  • Post Image lynnehappytower2002

    7/30/2011 8:54 PM
    I have been back and forth on weight watchers for many programs, I think PP program seems to consider the impact of carbohydrates more. So things you got away with murder on before, now cost ya!! I like the new PP. keeps me more conscious of portions and carbs/sugars.

  • Post Image kalouie

    7/29/2011 9:29 AM
    I have used both systems. Lost weight on both. The PP system promotes healthier foods. Maggie, another WW mentor of mine, suggested creating a "cheat sheet" that listed foods, drinks, and condiments I frequently use noting serving size, name of food, and PP value. I carry it around in my little blue book with my weight loss card and paper tracker. It's pretty tattered now.

  • Post Image lachambe2011 (linda)

    7/28/2011 11:51 PM
    Having been on both, I do like PP better because thee is an incentive to eat more healthier whole foods. And because carbs are counted ,they're a few more points so I tend to eat less carbs now. Either way whenever I am OP I do well and feel healthier. Thanks for posting!

  • Post Image denedayle

    7/28/2011 11:02 PM
    Very nice post. Thank you for sharing.

  • Post Image im1neome (peg)

    7/28/2011 1:17 PM
    Excellent and informational post. Thank you!

  • Post Image jammo12

    7/28/2011 1:11 PM
    That was so helpful, thanks for all the information

  • Post Image *celt*

    7/28/2011 12:14 PM
    When will we be graded on this "new math"? *giggles* Thank you very much... This should be required reading as "PP 101" for newbies!

  • Post Image breezeweb33

    7/28/2011 10:10 AM
    Weight Watchers should post this on the front page of the site. Awesome blog entry!

  • Post Image elvensnow

    7/28/2011 9:44 AM
    You're exactly right. I've tried to explain to people on the boards before but idk if they get it. 0 PP =/= 0 calories, and WL is all about calorie deficit! I guess some people just expect the "plan" to work as long as they are "technically" doing it right, but the point is that this is not a perfect science and you still have to use some common sense in making choices =)

  • Post Image happygrammy2001

    7/28/2011 9:32 AM
    What a great blog! You helped clear some things up for many people, I'm sure. I've been on both points & points plus and there is a clear reason for the change. Thanks for sharing!

  • Post Image txbbwgirl (stephanie)

    7/28/2011 9:10 AM
    Great post.

  • Post Image 990003!!! (paula)

    7/28/2011 9:03 AM
    Great blog!! Thank you so much for the research. I have heard many people say you never see anybody get fat eating fruit, but it can also foil up things for you. I have to limit the fruits I eat and up the protein, just how my body works. I eat so much better on PP than I did on the old program, yes I still like bread but now don't eat near as much junk, even putting fresh fruit on peanut butter sandwiches instead of jelly. I wish everyone would read this blog and eat the 49 extra points.

  • Post Image hsq1961

    7/28/2011 8:37 AM
    Well said! You've explained why WWs who eat processed foods lose weight on PP, and why WWs who eat mostly fruits and veggies don't. I'm one of those people who has had to revert to the old system so that I have a way to count fruits and veggies, which make up a large chunk of my intake because of food allergies. I've finally figured out how to revert back, but wish I hadn't had to spend 6 months of time and money figuring out how to. Thanks for the explanation!

  • Post Image orange~poppy

    7/28/2011 8:34 AM
    I prefer PP overall. In the P system, there used to be an "edge" to selecting foods that were high in fiber because they had a lower value. Even products containing added fiber that doesn't naturally occur in foods had this edge, which wasn't sensible nutritionally. (I believe many manufacturers pumped up their products with fiber, specifically to target WW members). Now starches are starches, their PPV seems to be consistent with their relative weight. It's a big improvement.

  • Post Image melissa lishner

    7/28/2011 8:13 AM
    Joyce - great post! Frances - I believe that the core plan allowed you to eat certain foods until satisfied without measuring or tracking but if you couldn't control your portions, that method could be devastating - it's the same with the fruit - I know people who eat 3-4 bananas or half a watermelon and their total # of DP's and wonder why they aren't losing or are gaining! It's not unlimited, which some people don't get yet. Stay Strong - quitting is not an option!

  • Post Image lmcusa57 (linda)

    7/28/2011 8:09 AM
    I like points plus better because I DO snack on fruits vs. 100 cal packs of whatever!!

  • Post Image madamealto (frances)

    7/28/2011 8:05 AM
    Excellent research and post! I got to goal using the old points system. Like many others I tried the new Points Plus system and just felt frustrated because I'd gotten used to being able to mentally calculate the value of things. Also there was a thing called set points so that you could allow for something like a chicken breast without having to weigh it. I am currently counting calories and it's easier all around. But, many people succeed on Points Plus! You have to choose what works for you.

  • Post Image tessmomof3

    7/28/2011 7:38 AM
    Thanks for sharing. I have done both programs; and the points plus system does help me make healthier choices. I use to eat lots of those 100 calorie snack bars...not very nutritious. It's better to have a piece of fruit. :-)


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