While no food is off-limits, you're encouraged to make healthier food choices while following the Weight Watchers PointsPlus plan. The program gives a PointsPlus value to foods based on their nutrient profile. It assigns lower points to nutritious foods and higher points to less healthy foods. Don't panic if you crave a crunchy snack such as crackers while following the Weight Watchers plan. Find out how to weed out the less healthy varieties.
What to Look For
Crackers that are highly refined typically contain higher sodium and fat and fewer beneficial nutrients than more healthy options. The key to finding better cracker options is to look for crackers made from whole grains. Examples include crackers made from barley, brown rice, whole wheat, buckwheat, bulgur wheat, whole-grain corn, quinoa, millet, whole oats, rye and amaranth. Whole-grain foods contain all the parts of the grain: the bran, germ and endosperm. Refined grains lose nutritious components such as fiber, B vitamins, vitamin E, trace minerals and unsaturated fat. Check the nutrition label for ingredients such as "whole-wheat flour."
Two PointsPlus Value Options
You can satisfy the munchies with crackers without draining your points. The following options are two PointsPlus values per serving: Special K Multigrain Snack Crackers, Townhouse Flatbread Crisps, Triscuit Thin Crisps and Breton Popped Cracker Chips, which are a hybrid between a cracker and chip. They come in plain as well as a variety of herb flavors, and the serving size for all but one is 17 crackers. The serving size for the Townhouse Flatbread Crisps is 10 crackers.
Three PointsPlus Value Options
You have even more options for just one additional point. These crackers are three PointsPlus values per serving: Crunchmaster Sesame Rice Crackers, Twisto's Baked Snack Bites, Kellogg's All-Bran Crackers, Baked Multigrain Wheat Thins and Pepperidge Farm Baked Crackers. These come in a varieties of savory flavors, as well as plain. The serving size varies from 13 to 20 crackers. The Pepperidge Farm crackers provide the most per serving at 20, while the Baked Multigrain Wheat Thins provide the least per serving at 13. The remainder are between 17 to 18 crackers per serving.
Tips for Success on Weight Watchers
Weight Watchers offers tips to help you improve your eating habits and shrink your waistline. In addition to choosing whole grains, eat at least five 1/2-cup servings of fruits and vegetables per day. Most fruits and vegetables have a PointsPlus value of zero. Drink at least two 1-cup servings of low-fat milk and eat one or two servings of lean protein each day. Limit your sugar and alcohol intake and have 2 teaspoons of healthy oils such as olive, sunflower or safflower daily.