How do you go around counting points? Do you carry a chart with
you? It sounds complicated to me.
I think there are charts and calculators you can toss in your purse, but I've never been that good at math!
I am enrolled in the online program, where you can type in the foods you are thinking about eating (or already ate) and the portion size and it tells you the point value. A serving of most vegetables is zero points, so obviously you try to incorporate those into every meal to bulk up your foods (aside from the whole nutritional value thing). Most fruits are one point, which is still an excellent consumption choice.
If what you are eating has a nutrition label, you can enter the calories, fat, and fiber of each serving into an online calculator and it will display the point value of that item. Basically, low calorie + low fat + high fiber = good. The point system doesn’t account for things like sodium intake, to you have to take it upon yourself to factor in that kind of stuff.
Obviously, the more real your food is, the lower it is in points and the better it is for you. Which would make sense, seeing as food as it was created was designed to nurture our bodies as they were created. Go figure – God knows more about what our bodies need then General Mills… or for that matter, Kashi. After all, He designed the prototype.
One helpful website I’ve discovered, which would also be a great option for people who want to track their nutritional intake but aren’t interested in participating in a program like WW, is the Daily Plate. Not every restaurant menu item and store brand is listed in the WW database, so I have found the nutritional values for a lot of foods on the Daily Plate website, and then typed them into my WW calculator to get the points value. It looks like they also have a lot of features similar to the WW online system, minus the patented points system (which I prefer the simplicity of).
So, I generally plan my meals out in advance but, if that’s not possible, I try to make wise decisions and then document it later. Believe it or not, it can actually be frustrating to save 15 points for dinner and end up eating a low-fat meal… you find yourself looking around for things to eat to help you reach your points target without going over. Planning in advance is helpful.
No matter how you choose to live a healthy lifestyle, I think it actually goes back to what Susan Powter use to preach on her infomercials: eat real food, move, breathe and think!