It’s been a funny kind of week so far because I’ve been studying A LOT for my Driver Theory Test (passed today – yippee). My husband has also been away on business and so I’ve been chief dog walker and guardian of the household chores. Put the two together and I’ve not been as focused on my diet and exercise as I’d like to have been.
However, I’ve been logging all my food on the WW app or website and syncing my exercise and I have the following observations on the diet now that I’m a few days in:
Points do not mean calories!
Regardless of what diet I am following I will also track calories so that I can compare the amount of calories allowed/I eat on each plan. This tracking has shown me that all calories are not created equal on Weight Watchers.
When I’m busy I gravitate towards quick and easy foods, which I doubt is unusual, such as toast for breakie, maybe a shop bought wrap for lunch and pasta and a jar of sauce for supper, supplemented with lots of fruit, salad and veggies. WW it seems does not allow for this kind of eating. For instance, yesterdays’ meals of vegan sausage sandwich for breakie, ryvita (x4) for lunch and pasta for supper (1,600 calories) cost me 42 SmartPoints, where my daily SmartPoints allowance is 30. After just a few days it seemed to me that carbs and fats (of any kind) were really being ‘punished’ and so I did a bit of digging on the WW site and found the following explanation of how the SmartPoints are calculated:
SmartPoints nudges you towards nutritious, healthier foods so that you eat better, feel better, have more energy AND lose weight. Now that’s what we call smart!
With SmartPoints, foods that are higher in sugar and/or saturated fat are higher in SmartPoints values. Foods that are higher in lean protein are lower in SmartPoints values. You’re steered towards healthier choices.
- Every food is assigned its own SmartPoints value — an easy-to-use number based on four components: calories, saturated fat, sugar, and protein.
- Protein lowers the amount of SmartPoints values that something “costs.”
- Sugar and saturated fat increase the SmartPoints values.
So it does seem as if WW favours a higher protein and lower carb diet. I’m not a nutritionist so I can’t really comment on whether they are right or not, but I do know that this might make life a bit difficult for a carb loving vegan like me.
However, I wouldn’t be five stones overweight if what I have been doing up until now is the right thing to do and so I’m really going to try hard to stick within my daily SmartPoints allowance so that I can use the weekly allowance for fun things like wine!!
Exercise doesn’t really have to be exercise …
I’ve synced my beloved Garmin Vivoactive to my WW account so that all my steps can earn me FitPoints. Save from one run this week, all my steps have come via gentle dog walking and yet I have still managed to clock up 48 of my weekly 57 FitPoint target after only four days.
Please don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining as it helps balance up all the SmartPoints I’m racking up by eating too many carbs! However, it does seem a little generous to get so many FitPoints for such little effort.
Free from food missing from the database
This really isn’t a biggie as it’s so easy to add food to the diary, however, all of my dairy free substitutes (apart from Chipp’a mayo) are missing from the database and so I’ve had to add them manually, i.e. Flora Freedom and Violife Slices. These are all foods that I buy from Sainsbury’s so not quirky weird ‘health foods’.
Not a criticism as such, just a bit of a shame for a vegan in a bubble who likes to think we’re taking over the world!
I’m not unaware that all of my comments today have been pretty down on Weight Watchers but I hope I’ve also acknowledged the part that my lifestyle this week has played on how committed I’ve been to the diet. I’m hoping that now the revision is over and hubby is home I’ll be able to start following the guidelines more stringently and stop frittering away SmartPoints on bread and processed food. The positive is that I am still within my weekly SmartPoint allowance thanks to all those lovely FitPoints!
Wish me luck!