Weight Watchers' New SmartPoints Diet Plan

Dec 9 2015
Question@2x Dear Hungry Girl,

Have you heard of Weight Watchers' new points system, SmartPoints®? It's replacing PointsPlus®. I'd love to know what you think of it... and if you'll be listing the SmartPoints® values for your recipes now!

Wondering about Weight Watchers
Answer@2x Hi Wondering,

I have heard all about the new SmartPoints® system! I think it'll really help people make better food choices and lose more weight. We'll definitely be listing the new values with all of our upcoming recipes (and updating some classics on our site). In fact, we've already started! In the meantime, here are five things you need to know about Weight Watchers SmartPoints®...

1. SmartPoints® values are based on calories, saturated fat, sugars, and protein. On the other hand, PointsPlus® calculations were comprised of total fat, carbs, fiber, and protein. How does it all work? The SmartPoints® value starts with the calorie count; protein lowers the value, while saturated fat and sugars increase that number. Makes sense...

2. Fruits and most veggies are still zero-point foods... even in recipes! When it comes to calculating the values for recipes, the nutrients from fruits and veggies are only factored in if they get blended (like in a smoothie). This means that the SmartPoints® value for an HG recipe made up of chicken, sauce, and lots of veggies will only reflect the numbers from the chicken and sauce. (The veggies would still be factored into the total calories, fat, etc.; they just won't be included in the SmartPoints® value.) Same idea for a big fruit and yogurt bowl. Yes!

Click here for more info on how SmartPoints® values are calculated!

3. Pure protein RULES on the new plan, but watch out for sugary sweets. With PointsPlus®, a 4-oz. serving of cooked skinless turkey breast had a value of 3*. But with SmartPoints®, that same portion has a value of just 1*. Wow! As a big protein fan, I love this. However, if you've got a sweet tooth, watch out for sugar. A tablespoon of granulated white sugar had a PointsPlus® value of 1*... It now has a SmartPoints® value of 3*. Big difference!

4. Most people do get a few more points per day. While the exact daily points budget varies from person to person, it appears that the majority will get more points on SmartPoints® than they did on PointsPlus®. Not a lot more, but a few. And just like before, you also get a weekly budget of extra points, in case you need 'em.

5. The next HG cookbook (out in April) will include nutritional info for saturated fat (so SmartPoints® values can be calculated)... and tons of low-sugar treats! OK, this is more about us than SmartPoints®, but we thought you’d want to know! HG recipes have always been low in calories and overall fat; high in protein; and loaded with fruit and veggies. And in this book, there are practically no added sugars in sight! So you know they'll be SmartPoints® friendly. Click here for a sneak peek at the book!

P.S. Over the next few months, we’ll be working to update our Popular Recipes section to reflect saturated fat counts and the new SmartPoints® values. Stay tuned!

Chew on this:

Today, December 9th, is National Pastry Day. Merry Cranberry Pear Tarts, anyone?

You KNOW you're not the only one curious about Weight Watchers' new points system. Click "Send to a Friend" and share, share, share!

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We may have received free samples of food, which in no way influences whether these products are reviewed favorably, unfavorably, mentioned with indifference, or mentioned at all. Click for more about our editorial and advertising policies.

*The PointsPlus® and SmartPoints® values for these products and/or recipes were calculated by Hungry Girl and are not an endorsement or approval of the product, recipe or its manufacturer or developer by Weight Watchers International, Inc., the owner of the PointsPlus® registered trademark and SmartPoints® trademark.

SmartPoints® value not what you expected? Click here for more info on how the values are calculated, plus more FAQs about PointsPlus® and SmartPoints® values on our website.