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South Beach Diet Vs. Weight Watchers

author image Eliza Martinez
Eliza Martinez has written for print and online publications. She covers a variety of topics, including parenting, nutrition, mental health, gardening, food and crafts. Martinez holds a master's degree in psychology.
South Beach Diet Vs. Weight Watchers
A healthy chicken and vegetable dish. Photo Credit Elena_Danileiko/iStock/Getty Images

The South Beach Diet and the Weight Watchers plan are both commercial weight loss programs that emphasize healthy eating as a lifestyle. Comparing them will help you choose the one that is right for you. The Weight-Loss Information Network recommends choosing a plan that is balanced and teaches you how to eat healthy; the plan should also incorporate exercise and promote healthy weight loss, which is 1 to 2 pounds per week.


The South Beach Diet and Weight Watchers both emphasize eating healthy food but consuming fewer calories than you are burning, which will result in weight loss. The South Beach Diet consists of three phases; the first phase is the most restrictive with regard to the foods you can eat. The second phase adds more foods to the diet, and the final phase is a maintenance phase to keep you on track and prevent weight from creeping back. Weight Watchers assigns a point value to foods, and you plan your meals according to the recommended point range for your age, size and gender.


Both Weight Watchers and the South Beach Diet offer convenience foods that take the guesswork out of meals and snacks. However, each program also allows you to eat what you enjoy in amounts that are conducive to healthy weight loss. Both diets emphasize healthy foods within an overall well-balanced plan. You should include plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein and low-fat dairy in addition to the packaged foods marketed by the programs to keep calories or points within the recommended range.


The websites for both the South Beach Diet and Weight Watchers provide tools to help you succeed at losing weight on the plan you choose. SouthBeachDiet.com provides recipes, success stories, a support network that will help you achieve your goals and a way to purchase South Beach foods and cookbooks. WeightWatchers.com features recipes, fitness advice, success stories and a marketplace for buying Weight Watchers products, as well as a community link for advice and tips on losing weight on the program.

Signing Up

You can sign up for the South Beach Diet or Weight Watchers online so you can begin losing weight immediately. Weight Watchers also offers group meetings at which dieters weigh in, discuss problems and get tips and advice from others on the diet. If you think face-to-face support would help you reach your goals, Weight Watchers may be the better choice because South Beach doesn't offer this type of feature.

Expert Insight

When choosing a weight loss plan, you need to be sure you are comfortable following the guidelines and that you like the kinds of foods offered on the plan. If this isn't the case, you are more likely to abandon the plan before you have reached your goals. According to Weight-Loss Information Network, you should always talk to your doctor before starting a weight loss plan and should be sure to include a healthy dose of physical activity in your day. Burning 500 extra calories per day, or eating 500 calories less per day, will result in a 1-pound loss per week according to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.

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