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Does Nutrisystem Work for Weight Loss?

Updated on February 7, 2013

Does Nutrisystem work for weight loss? This is a question that is explored here and answers found to help anyone considering trying this type of diet and better understand diet food delivery plans in general as well as how they should best be used for successful weight loss.

Nutrisystem has been around for over three decades and is a tried and trusted diet food delivery plan that has helped many thousands of people to lose weight. On the flip side, there are many people who have tried the plan and failed to lose weight for one reason or another.

It is this that I'm going to look at here and see why people fail at a plan that should cause weight loss in anyone who sticks to it and follows the instructions.

Let's see why anyone would fail at a diet plan like this.

What is the Nutrisystem Diet?

First of all, let's take an overview of what exactly is the Nutrisystem diet plan, so we know what we're talking about.

Nutrisystem have devised a low GI (Glycemic Index) carbohydrate and low calorie diet plan and packaged it as a series of ready meals that come frozen and are delivered to your door in batches of one month's supply. The three meals a day in the package are meant to directly replace your regular meals.

By doing this, you essentially remove a potentially bad diet from your life and replace it with a good diet that is designed to help you lose weight through its low calorie content and its makeup of low GI carbohydrates and high protein and nutrient rich meals.

So far so good. It all sounds very simple and that's because it really is.

The idea is that by only eating the packaged meals each day, you restrict your calorie intake while boosting your consumption of the low GI carbohydrates that will help your body's metabolism deal with the food it ingests more efficiently. This means your body will burn more calories than it consumes and when that simple formula is met, you must lose weight.

So where do things go wrong?

Why Might People Fail to Lose Weight?

People fail at diets for a variety of reason, but fully the most prevalent reason is because they cheat.

Ouch! That is a hard truth to swallow, but truth it is nonetheless.

People who go on diets get bored with them and when they think no one is looking, they'll sneak an item of food in between meals that is guaranteed to be high in calories and will totally upset the apple cart. The worst of it is that when they do this once, they will then do it again and again. They will not tell anyone , nor will they admit, even to themselves that they are cheating.

So what usually happens is that someone who has cheated the diet will complain loudly that the diet didn't work and that it is a load of rubbish! They will never in a million years admit they cheated. In fact a lot of people simply go into total denial that they even cheated at all and will stick doggedly to their story that they followed the diet plan to the letter and never once ate anything that was not on the diet sheet!

So here's another thing that people do not want to hear.

Overweight people are overweight because they consume more calories than they burn. No arguments and no exceptions. That is the rule and its as solid as the law of gravity. Most overweight people happily accept this fact because they know full well that they eat more than they should and are generally happy to be the way they are.

But a smaller group of overweight people simply deny they eat more than they should, or eat the wrong foods and blame an amazing amount of excuses for their condition. The do this without ever addressing the real cause, which is the imbalance in calories.

For these people, going on a diet plan is an attempt to set things right, but they often fail because they got hungry in between meals or they got tempted by a chocolate candy bar or a pizza or whatever and their calorie intake ended up higher than what they burned.

OK that's addressed and its not meant to upset anyone, just to tell it like it is. The truth is not always what we want to hear, but to get a message across, it just has to be said.

Losing Weight with Nutrisystem

So back to the original question, "Does Nutrisystem work?" The answer is a simple yes, but with the proviso that it will work as long as it is adhered to without cheating.

In fact, the same goes for any good, well designed and personalized diet, not necessarily counting some obviously suspect "fad" diets. A good diet will include a range of food groups to ensure your body gets all the nutrients it needs while restricting calorie intake and eliminating foods that are known to cause weight gain, such as all junk food, food containing high GI carbohydrates, food containing high levels of sugar and/or trans fats etc.

If you are interested to know more about this company and its diet plans, I have recently round an excellent resource of Nutrisystem reviews that really explains what is involved as well as providing a sort of blog-based comments forum for people to write in with their own experiences. Last count there were over 280 comments in there, so its a lot of interesting reading to be had.

There is one final point that is also important with any weight loss program. That is in order for any diet or weight reduction system to be fully effective, you have to do some things for yourself to give yourself the best possible chance of success. This includes motivating yourself to stick to any diet and to augment its effectiveness by doing some daily exercise.

Exercise is so important to the success of any weight loss program it cannot be understated.

This is because you must boost your metabolism so that your body can burn more calories than it consumes. Exercise does this by forcing your body to work. When your body works, it burns calories, but in addition to that, it also sets up a process for digesting food and using the energy that food provides more efficiently and not storing any excess as fat.

The more you exercise, the better your body gets at converting the calories it consumes into energy that is used to tone up muscles and increase strength, meaning your body's calorie conversion rate continually improves so that you will succeed in achieving your ideal weight and body shape and keep it.

This is the goal of anyone who wants to lose weight and while a good diet plan can help you get started, you cannot be lazy and just expect the diet to do it all for you. You have to do something for yourself as well. And that something is exercising while resisting the temptation to cheat on your diet.

Remember, if you cheat on your diet, the only person you are cheating is yourself.


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  • JACKIE LANTZ profile image

    JACKIE LANTZ 6 years ago

    Nice summary of the diet. I tried it, but being a fussy eater who loves to cook fresh real food, the food just did not taste right. Very processed and overly spiced, really garlicy. I like the concept of delivery if it included all foods. The idea of having to go to the store and buy additional food, like fruits and veg make it more expensive and not feesible for most people.

  • Janice White profile image

    Janice White 8 years ago from England

    Thanks, I do tend to speak my mind. Its true though that any good diet program will work when you don't cheat, so this could count for a while barrage of them really. I just picked this particular system as I know someone who tried it and they did lose several pounds as a result. But they didn't cheat, as so many who fail, do!

  • profile image

    Weight Pills 8 years ago

    You provide a very sensible and unbiased review of this diet food delivery plan. Like you said, any well-designed and personalized diet has the potential to be quite effective if it is strictly adhered to and there is little or no cheating. Many a cheater will tell anyone who'll listen to them that this-or-that weight loss system doesn't work. That's how rumors get started. Thanks for telling it like it is.