Interested in Slimming World, but now sure how it works? Check out my Slimming World Review for Slimming World USA.
Slimming World USA launched their brand new site in January this year, it is really user friendly, especially for mobile users.
You will totally love the brand new look.
Most who visit my blog are not new to Slimming World, but for those of you stumbling across my blog that have not heard about this fab healthy eating plan before. I felt it was about time I did a review.
Slimming World was formed in the UK over 40 years ago, 1969 to be exact by Margaret Mile-Bramwell. The organisation holds meetings in various locations in the UK and has groups led by trained consultants, which are a place for members to share their experiences, discuss all things relating to the plan, including their weight loss and Members are also weighed weekly and awarded by set goals as they are reached. It is a great support network.
In addition to the group meetings, they also have an online plan for members who are not able to make the weekly meetings or are in a location where no meetings are available to them.
In 2009, Slimming World ventured Stateside opening up various group meetings in the Texas area. Their success there is spreading and in 2012 the Slimming World USA online program went live.
As most of you have read on my About page, I tried many other diets and while successful, I always found them unsustainable in the long term, until of course I started on my Slimming World journey. Since joining I can honestly say it has never felt like I am on a diet, there are so many delicious foods available to us and it totally retrains how we approach food and cooking. So much so, that even when I haven’t been 100% focused, I still am following it loosely, which in turn means, since I started this way of healthy eating, the weight I have lost has not gone back on.
I have been a member of the UK online program before, but was most excited when the online USA program went live.
So what does the program involve? I thought I would break it down for you below:
That is a word you will see used very often in the Slimming World plan.
Basically food optimising allows you to continue enjoying all the foods you love, but in a more positive and healthy way and if you hate having to count calories/points and weigh every single piece of food that enters your mouth, then this is the plan for you.
There are 3 basic steps to Slimming World:
This is a list that you can pick and choose an unlimited amount from, and you will be surprised by the amount of free foods that are available. Meat, fish, pasta, rice, potatoes, eggs, fruit, vegetables, beans, pulses etc, the list goes on. Just think of all the delicious food combinations you can make with those. The only recommendation is that you fill a 1/3 of your plate with speed foods (certain fruit and unstarchy vegetables), What this does is naturally portion controls your meals, without any need for weighing or counting calories. All free foods are high satiety, meaning they keep you fuller for longer.
As well as your free foods you also get a certain number of healthy extras (2 in the UK, 3 in the US/Canada). These are A choices which are foods which are high in calcium and B choices which are high in fibre. They are added to make sure you give your body all the nutrients it needs.
Lastly is syns. No food is off bounds on Slimming World. Your syns are there to allow you access to the foods which are not on your free foods list. In the UK you can choose between 5 and 15 syns per day or here in the US/Canada you get to choose between 5 and 10 syns. All foods that are not free, have a syn allowance. So if you fancy that piece of chocolate, you can still have it and be 100% on plan.
It all sounds too easy right? Well that is because it is easy – Extra Easy
Which was the name that was given to the weight loss program by Slimming World. They now just call it – Food Optimising
Here is a sample of the yummy filling foods you could be eating every day while losing weight:
these are syn free as they use all FREE FOOD ingredients
a delicious hearty syn free soup using all FREE FOODS, serve this with 30g/1oz of melted cheese on 60g/2oz of whole wheat toasted bread using your healthy extra A and B choices
amazing Chinese Lemon Chicken, which you can see with some steamed rice and stir fried vegetables (both of which are FREE FOODS) – making this meal just 2.5 syns for the chicken
Which all still leaves you with one healthy extra A choice and 7.5 syns to use on a treat.
As well as the traditional Food Optimising plan, there is now also Food Optimising SP, which you can do for a whole week or add a few day here and there to boost your weight loss, when you do a food optimising SP day, you fill your plate with S (speed foods) which are unstarchy vegetables and certain fruits and then P (protein rich foods), meats, fish, eggs, certain dairy and beans etc. But as well as that, try to fill at least 1/2 of your plate with the S (speed foods), that is because they are filling but very low in energy density. As well as those foods you also still get your usual healthy extra (as well as an additional B choice) and syns.
So onto the online program. What exactly do you get? (bear in mind that my comments below will be based on the Slimming World USA membership) and offers may vary from time to time.
An online membership for Slimming World USA is just $30 for 3 months – that is a bargain if you ask me, it makes it just $10 a month to have access to all the tools you need to lose weight while enjoying delicious filling foods.
Once you sign up, you get this handy little booklet set to you in the post, which is a nice size to fit in your handbag, o that you can carry it around with you at all times.
- Welcome to Slimming World Booklet (containing all the information you need to follow the plan, I like to refer to it as the Slimming World bible, as once you have read through this a few times and the information has sunk in, you will know the plan like a pro, it is also the right size to make it handy for popping in your bag too).
Once you have signed up, you get instant access to the website, that has a heap of resources at your fingertips:
- All the information needed to help you start and continue with the plan
- Online food diary
- 600+ recipes
- Body Magic
- Extensive Food lists which are updated regularly including syns online, healthy extras, free foods etc
- Syns calculator which allows to work out the syn allowance in foods.
- Weekly weigh in, where you are prompted by email each week to remind you to weigh in and you can set your own targets. You will also receive little motivational awards as you reach certain goals and a graph will show you how well you are doing with your weight loss.
- Motivational support geared to help you. For instance if you lose weight, there are plenty of encouragements and little messages to keep you going, but also have a bad week and you will be sent messages to help get you back on plan and focused.
- Online Community – where you can get support and share ideas with other members (this is brand new to Slimming World too, as the UK site does not actually have a forum). I was really pleased to see this addition to the US website, as following the plan online and not being able to physically go to meetings, this is a great area of support.
- Weekly Online Slimming World Group Meeting – weigh in online and chat with members of your group weekly, get tips and motivate yourself to stay on plan. These weekly online groups are run by the Slimming World team (Online US membership only)
- Members letters and weight loss/success stories
- and if that wasn’t enough you will have 24/7 access to the website which also includes features with tips and support.
Stuck with understanding something in particular or need to ask a question the Slimming World USA website also has a little chat box at the bottom of the page when you log in, where you can speak to a member of the team when they are online.
Sounds great? Well that’s because it is. Once you try this new way of healthy eating, you will not believe how easy it is to lose weight and keep the weight off.
Do you want to give the plan a go? Then click on the link below:
and for those outside of the USA, click on this link:
(NOTE: there are slight variations to the plans in the UK and the USA, these are mainly just weights of healthy extras, otherwise the plans are virtually the same)
And if you are already a member, please click on the share buttons at the top of this post to share with your family and friends. Slimming World is the success that we make it.
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Nutritional information is an estimate and is to be used for informational purposes only
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