Hey guys and gals!
Hope your summer has been epic to say the least. Hopefully your life calms down some with school starting back up, for all you parents may you have more peaceful days as your child goes back to school. For all you college kids may you slow down a bit and get back to hitting those books instead of... well lets just call them extra curriculars. My summer was great, I went home to visit family, did some hiking, surfing, did some Jiu Jitsu tournaments, got bossed around by Logan (my 3 year old boss). So it was a good summer. In this blog and the coming ones, I’d like to cover “diets,” specifically how they work, their guidelines, and if they really work. For me the most often question I get asked is:” what’s the best diet?”
I never have the answer, mainly because I don’t have knowledge on all the diets out there. So this mini-series as we will call it, will be informative to you as well as me.
First up, lets tackle one of the more popular diet plans out there, endorsed by arguably one of the most powerful women in this world Oprah; Weight Watchers.
Weight watchers basically is calorie counting but simplified. Instead of tracking your calories your tracking your points. Each person when they begin weight watchers gets their specific point number calculated and given to them. Each food is a certain amount of points and much like counting your calories you are not allowed to go over your points for the day. Every 2-4 weeks your points are recalculated to be properly adjusted for any changes in weight.
These points are calculated using your age, weight, gender (they only have points for 2 right now), height, and lifestyle (sedentary or intense). Each food has its own points, these are calculated by looking into the fats, carbohydrates, fiber, and protein.
Here is the formula if you will o how they calculate the number of points you are allowed:
Begin with 0 points
If you are a man add 8 points, if you are a woman add 2 points
Add 4 points if you are between 17-26, 3 for 27-37, 2 for 38-47, 1 for 48-58
Add 1 pt. per 10 pts of body weight
Add 1 if you are 5.1-5.10 ft, 2 pts if your over 5’10
6 for a labor intensive job, 2 for a moderate one, and 0 for a sedentary job
So for myself as a man (yes, I’m sure) I add 8. Next, I get 3 points for being 27 (total 11), I weigh 210 lbs. so I add 21 points for my weight- now I am at 32 points. Next I add 2 points since I am over 5’10 and finally I add 6 points since my profession would be considered hard labor (yes guys keeping count and saying 4 more is hard labor). Add it all up and my daily allowed points on weight watchers is 40 points.
If you’re interested in finding your points follow the same formula and calculate them, if you still have questions, you can shoot me a message and I can double check your math (not sure why you would trust me with math).
Now that we have our allowed points it’s time to explain how the point system for foods work. The cool thing about weight watchers is that it’s been around so long, that there are literally tons and tons of cheat sheets and information out there on food points. You can google any food and chances are the point value will pop up.
For educational purposes lets breakdown how they calculate the point value for every food item.
Most food items have a nutritional breakdown on their packaging, go to the total calories of the food item and divide it by 50. Next go to the total “fat” number and divide it by 12-add these numbers together and take a breather. Next divide the “fiber” by 5 and subtract this from the previous number.
Equation: (Total Calories/ 50) + (Fat/12) – (Fiber/5) = Point Value of food.
So let’s assume a slice of pizza is 150 calories, 54 grams of fat and 1 gram of fiber. Our equation would then be: (150/50) + (54/12) – (1/5) =?
Simplified: 3 + 4.5 - .2 = 7.3
Let’s round down and 7 is our total points for 1 slice of pizza.
For a fat boy like myself 4 slices of pizza is about normal to eat at once, so this meal will cost me 28 out of my 40 allowed points! Yikes, I think I will re-think that meal.
That is the perfect example of how the points work, realizing that meal is 3/4 of my allowed points for the day caused me to think twice if not completely stray from that meal.
It’s a lot of math but it is important to note, there are easy calculators out there that will calculate the points of each food for you by punching in their values. Weight watchers also has an app that allows you to scan the barcode of most foods and has a very, very comprehensive list of foods and their point value. If I was to stray from my favorite “diet” if you will (calorie counting) then weight watchers would be an easy transition. It’s the same concept but simplified. If your someone who gets frustrated counting the calories maybe counting points is the way for you to go. It’s a great concept, obviously it works (Queen Orpah endorses it herself) and its easy.
Here is a link to one of the food point calculators :
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