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Welcome to my Nutrisystem review.
As a registered dietitian, I understand the struggle many encounter when it comes to weight loss. One of the main challenges is the lack of time to prepare their meals.
Nowadays, people’s schedules are very complicated. There’s work, family, chores, and exercise. Doing it all sounds too exhausting.
One time-consuming area that suffers is cooking. This leads to relying on takeout or fast food to save time. However, in most cases, this is a poor choice that causes weight gain.
Nutrisystem is a solution to this problem. It is a weight loss system that delivers pre-cooked meals you only have to reheat.
We’ll go over more details and look at other Nutrisystem reviews today. Nonetheless, Nutrisystem’s lack of nutritional education and encouraging healthy habits might not create long-term, sustainable results.
For this reason, I believe that Found weight loss might be a better option.
Need more information? Keep reading to find out whether Nutrisystem is the right way to go and what the best alternative is.
Nutrisystem is a weight loss company with over 50 years of experience.
They offer meal plans ranging from 1,200 to 1,500 calories per day. However, since 2021, you can use the NuMi app to help tailor your meal plan. Here, they take into account the height, weight, age, sex, and activity levels to give you a more customized approach.
But, more on how Nutrisystem works later in the article.
The company offers programs for men, women, couples, and people with diabetes. On average, you can lose one to two pounds each week, but the results might vary depending on the start weight.
Nutrisystem doesn’t recommend that pregnant or breastfeeding women follow the program. Also, if you have chronic kidney disease, celiac disease, or are following a ketogenic lifestyle, you should not use this program.
What is Nutrisystem?
Nutrisystem is a weight loss program that delivers pre-cooked meals.
They offer several programs for men, women, people with diabetes, vegetarians, and couples.
The diet consists of consuming five to six meals per day to prevent hunger. Women receive 1,200 calories, and men 1,500 calories per day. This means you have a very large caloric deficit (eating fewer calories than your body needs).
Thanks to a caloric deficit, you can lose weight.
According to the website, you can lose five pounds during the first week and then an average of one to two pounds per week.
One of the benefits of Nutrisystem is that they have an app where you can keep track of your progress and adjust your meal plan.
Is Nutrisystem Worth It?
Nutrisystem might be an option for those that don’t have enough time to cook their meals. However, after reading reviews and analyzing the system, in my opinion, Nutrisystem is not worth it.
While they provide support from weight loss coaches and registered dietitians, this is merely an option. Thus, while you might lose weight following all of their meals, you don’t leave having learned how to implement lifestyle changes.
Also, when a program recommends stopping exercising, it automatically turns on several red flags in my head. Remember that exercise is essential for weight loss and overall health.
Nutrisystem recommends that you stop exercising for the first week because your body is adjusting to a low-calorie diet.
Very low-calorie diets are not the way to go. A 1,200 kcal diet might be too low for certain women. This can create hormonal imbalances, fatigue, and problems in the metabolism. The same applies to men since a 1,500-calorie diet might even be below the basal metabolic rate (BMR).
Nutrisystem Diet Overview
Nutrisystem offers pre-portioned and prepared meals that you get delivered to your doorstep.
It is a four-week program, but you can do it over and over again until you reach your goal weight. Once you reach it, there is a maintenance program you can get.
When you choose the plan that works for you (man, woman, vegetarian, or diabetes), you get the portions based on a 1,200-calorie or 1,500-calorie meal plan. You don’t have to worry about tracking your food or counting calories.
Each day, you receive breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, and desserts. However, you might still need to do some grocery shopping since you add vegetables, fruits, and some “flex meals” (which we are going to talk about later).
With their caloric deficit, you are supposed to lose around 13 lbs in the first month. In the following months, you can lose one to two pounds per week.
How does Nutrisystem work?
Nutrisystem works by providing you with a low-calorie meal plan.
Women receive 1,200 calories, and men 1,500 per day. They have a macronutrient distribution of 45-55% carbs, 25-30% protein, and 30% fats.
If you find the calories and distribution are inadequate, you can adjust it on their app to give you a personalized approach.
In the first week, you eat five meals per day—all provided by Nutrisystem. You get breakfast, a shake, lunch, a snack, and dinner.
You can also eat unlimited non-starchy vegetables (but they recommend consuming at least four servings) and 64 ounces of water per day.
Starting week two, you can have more flexibility in your meals. You can add what are called “flex meals.” These are meals you can cook yourself without having to rely on the packaged foods you get from the company.
You get two flex breakfasts, two flex lunches, two flex snacks, and two flex dinners per week. Men can have four flex snacks per week.
While flex meals give you some flexibility and variety, you still need to follow their guidelines. You can only consume SmartCarbs (those with a low glycemic index) and PowerFuels (lean protein).
Besides the flex meals, you can also add some extras. You can have up to three extra foods, like avocado, olives, popcorn, creamer, and honey.
Part of the diet consists of downloading and using their free app. Here, you can keep track of your progress, read an article, log your food, and find nutritional guides.
You can also ask for a meeting with a weight loss coach, registered dietitian, or certified diabetes educator, but this is not mandatory.
Nutrisystem offers different programs, so you can choose the type of meal plan based on your dietary needs.
- Women’s plan. A weight loss program especially for women (fewer calories than men).
- Men’s plan. A weight loss program for men (it allows more snacking than the women’s plan).
- Nutrisystem D. It is for people with diabetes. They have artificial sweeteners and don’t have a very severe calorie restriction to avoid low blood sugars.
- Vegetarian plan. It has no meat, but it has dairy products and eggs.
Then, you can choose the level of your plan. The more features it has, the more expensive it becomes. More on prices later in the article.
- Basic. It provides five days of meals per week, with classic recipes (+100 recipes to choose from).
- Uniquely Yours. It also offers five days of meals per week, but you get more recipes (+150 recipes).
- Uniquely Your Max+. You can choose to have five or seven days of meals per week, you have more variety of recipes, and you can use the NuMi app to customize your meal plan.
Regarding the type of plan you choose, they all offer:
- Prepared meals.
- Access to their app.
- Weight loss coaching.
- Free shipping.
Things to Consider Before Buying Nutrisystem
Before you head over to their website and sign up for the program, there are some things you should know about Nutrisystem.
Cost of Service
Nutrisystem is an expensive program. Expect to pay an average of $500 per month.
While it is true that this covers most of your food intake for the month, keep in mind that you need to add the foods you consume in your flex meals and additional portions of fruits and vegetables.
In the end, it won’t cost you only $500. The bill can run a bit higher.
Also, if you have a family, you need to make their meals and have yours on the side. This can make it very expensive. It can also take double the time to prepare meals since you need to prepare yours and theirs.
So, if you are on a tight budget or have a whole family to feed, this might not be the best option.
Type of Plans
There are many plans for you to choose from. Besides the ones mentioned above, you can also choose to sign up for the partner or the complete program.
The partner program is ideal for couples. It delivers two of each meal per day. That way, you don’t have to worry about cooking for your partner during this program. Also, having a buddy on a weight loss journey makes it easier.
The complete program offers you a tailored made program by a registered dietitian. If you want a more personalized approach, this might be for you.
With that said, they both come with an additional cost, so if you are not willing to spend extra on these extra features, you might want to consider the basic plans.
Tracking Your Progress On an App
Even though this program doesn’t have to count calories and macros, they encourage you to use their app. It can help track progress and receive educational nuggets to support you in weight loss.
However, if you are not tech-savvy or don’t want to spend more time on your phone, this might not be the option for you.
Let’s go more in-depth about those features that make the Nutrisystem weight loss program a possible option.
Meal planning can be a boring task. In the beginning, you might have the motivation and time to search for recipes and plan your week (even your month). However, after a couple of days, you might find yourself less motivated, sick of the same meals, and ready to give up.
One of the benefits of Nutrisystem is that it does all the planning for you. You have to choose the recipes you want or allow them to choose, and you don’t have to worry about what meal you are going to have, when, and most importantly, the portion you should be eating.
This can save you a lot of time and give you more joy in the meal. Instead of eating the same thing over and over again, you have new dishes every week.
Delivered to Your Door
Time is something most people don’t have nowadays.
If you’re ordering takeout or going to restaurants, it might not be much better than eating fast food. While some restaurants offer healthy options, in my experience, the more people eat outside of their homes, the more weight they gain.
If you want to lose weight but don’t have a lot of time to cook meals from scratch, Nutrisystem offers the best solution for you. It delivers the meals you need for the month right to your door. You only need to reheat them.
No need to chop, meal, prep, or spend hours cooking.
You might still need to prepare certain items like fruits and vegetables, but you can also have them delivered to your door from the grocery store.
Nutrisystem Caters to Dietary Requirements
Not many delivery systems offer meals for vegetarians or people with diabetes.
Over 37 million US people have diabetes (both diagnosed and undiagnosed). This represents a large part of the population.
I know it can be challenging to find places that have the appropriate type of foods that prevent your blood sugar levels from spiking.
Also, not every place has vegetarian options. And, if they do, you might have a limited amount to choose from.
Nutrisystem has plans for people with diabetes and vegetarians. This means you don’t have to restrict yourself and have a meal plan for your specific needs.
Finally, one of the program’s benefits is that you can download an app that offers several benefits.
I know a lot of clients who take notes in addition to downloading several food-tracking apps to manage their calorie intake.
With Nutrisystem, instead of having information all over the place, you can have it all in one app. The app allows you to centralize everything.
Additionally, the app can create a personalized meal plan if you pay an extra fee.
Nutrisystem Pros And Cons
We’ve come a long way in this Nutrisystem review. It’s a lot of information, so here, I summarize the pros and cons of this weight loss program.
- You get already-made meals.
- Free delivery to your door.
- Can promote weight loss.
- Saves you time in the kitchen.
- It has an app to track food.
- You can get a customized plan (for an additional price).
- Offers different plans.
- You still need to shop for vegetables, fruits, and other ingredients.
- Bad customer service.
- Some people don’t like the taste.
- Doesn’t teach lifestyle changes.
- Promotes results short-term.
Nutrisystem Meal Plans
As mentioned before, one of the benefits of Nutrisystem is that you get a meal plan. This means you don’t need to think about what you are going to have each day.
So, what does a regular Nutrisystem meal look like?
Fortunately, you can find a couple of sample meal plans on the Nutrisystem website.
V = Vegetable
FF = Free Food
- Nutrisystem Double Chocolate Muffin
- Coffee or Tea with low (< 10 calories) or no-calorie creamer (FF)
- 16 oz. water
- Nutrisystem Shake
- Nutrisystem Spicy Kung Pao Noodles
- 1 cup cooked broccoli (2 V)
- 16 oz. water
- Nutrisystem Chocolate Chunk Cookie
- 16 oz. water
- Nutrisystem Four Cheese Manicotti
- 2 cups salad served with low (< 10 calories) or no-calorie salad dressing (2V, 1 FF)
- 16 oz. water
- Nutrisystem Granola Cereal with 4 oz. (1/2 cup) fat-free milk
- Coffee or Tea with low (< 10 calories) or no-calorie creamer (FF)
- 16 oz. water
- Nutrisystem Shake
- Nutrisystem Fudge Graham Bar
- 1 cup cooked green beans (2 V)
- 16 oz. water
- Nutrisystem Popcorn
- 16 oz. water
- Nutrisystem Chicken Edamame Power Bowl
- 1 cup cooked broccoli (2 V)
- 16 oz. water
Nutrisystem App (NuMi App)
You can download the NuMi app for free in the App Store or Play Store as it’s available for both iOs and Android.
The app has several unique features:
- It allows you to track your meals both from Nutrisystem and regular foods.
- Monitor your progress by adding your weight.
- You get daily reminders for meal logging, water, and exercise.
- Find recipes, articles, and tips to help your weight loss journey.
- Get Nutrisystem’s special offers.
- Join challenges and contests.
Nutrisystem offers some supplements that can aid in your weight loss journey. However, they are not mandatory.
The only way they encourage you is the shakes as a snack, but the rest you can add based on your needs and goals.
Let’s take a closer look at each of their supplements.
Nutrisystem Fat Burner
For those that need an extra boost on their weight loss journey, you can take their fat burner supplement.
It contains several vitamins like thiamin, niacin, riboflavin, vitamin B6, folate, vitamin B12, biotin, and pantothenic acid. These can help convert the food you eat into usable energy in the body.
Also, it contains ingredients like chromium, which can help regulate blood glucose levels, and Cissus quadrangularis (stem and leaf extract). It seems that it can help improve joint health and increase serotonin levels (the happy hormone).
While it seems to be a fat-burning supplement, it lacks better fat-burning ingredients. Therefore, I would not recommend it unless you are looking for a hydrating formula.
It comes in a berry pomegranate flavor.
Nutrisystem ProSync Protein Shakes
You can include their protein shakes as one of your snacks for the day. They offer 120 kcal, 6 g of fiber, 2 g of fat, and 15 g of protein.
Thanks to its high fiber and protein content, it can increase your fullness levels, making you feel fuller for longer.
The only negative is that they come in only two flavors, so they don’t give you a lot of variety. You can find it in chocolate fudge and vanilla flavor.
Nutrisystem Max T Testosterone Booster
For men who want to boost their performance and their weight results by increasing their testosterone levels, the company recommends taking their testosterone booster.
It has the following ingredients:
- Vitamin B6. Research shows that it might increase the production of testosterone.
- Vitamin B12. It seems that low levels of B12 can produce low levels of testosterone.
- Zinc. Studies show that it can increase the production of testosterone.
- L-Citrulline Malate. It can help widen the blood vessels allowing more oxygen and nutrients to reach organs. So, it doesn’t have a direct effect on testosterone levels.
- Fenugreek extract. It can increase total serum testosterone levels.
- eleATP Blend. It can increase blood flow and energy levels.
- Eurycoma longifolia extract. Studies have reported that it can increase testosterone levels.
- Boron. It can increase the production of testosterone in the body.
While the supplement has good ingredients that might potentially increase testosterone levels, several ingredients might be present in low doses.
Nutrisystem Cost Per Month
So, what does it cost to join the program? Here, you can find a comparison table with the current prices of Nutrisystem.
|Plan||Basic ($)(per day)||Uniquely Yours ($)(per day)||Uniquely Yours Max+ ($) (per day)|
|Nutrisystem D (diabetes)||9.99||12.14||13.93|
|Partner (price per person)||9.99||12.14||13.57|
The vegetarian and the complete program have different prices depending if it’s for a man or a woman. Here you can find the prices.
|Plan||Woman ($)(per day)||Man ($)(per day)|
For any of the plans above, if you choose the subscription option (which you can pause at any time), you can save up to 50% of the price.
Nutrisystem Customer Reviews
A lot of Nutrisystem reviews aren’t very positive. According to Customer Affairs, they have 31 ratings with a 1.5-star out of 5 ratings. On TrustPilot, there are over 2,000 reviews with a 1.4-star rating.
Why are people rating Nutrisystem so poorly?
Most people state that they have bad customer service. It is difficult to pause or cancel the program, or whenever they have a question, they don’t get an answer. They also seem to charge extra fees people aren’t expecting.
Here is some overall consensus people say about Nutrisystem.
- There is a cancellation fee of $125.
- They charge for items with no authorization.
- Poor customer service.
- Small portions that leave you hungry.
- It is very expensive.
Let’s find out what people are saying – here are a few honest Nutrisystem reviews.
“I called to cancel my membership and was told there would be a $125 cancellation fee. I agreed to the $125 cancellation fee. As soon as I was off the call with NutriSystem I got notification that NutriSystem charged my account $479.98. I immediately called them back.
I was told by NutriSystem representative Jalil that this was an error on PayPal’s side and that this has been happening with PayPal lately. They said they are going to get ahold of PayPal and have them remove the charge but that it would take 3 to 5 business days to see the charge removed.
I will update my review here when and if I see the charges removed. I hope they are being honest with me and that this does not turn into a nightmare.”
“They charge you for things you didn’t authorize (like adding on extra shakes and even automatically enrolling you in their automatic shipments, if it is in their initial purchase screen, it’s well hidden in the fine print). Stay away – unethical people.”
- Mark Becking
“NOWHERE on their website you can CANCEL.
The response from their ‘email contact’ is one more marketing propaganda and NOT the answer to your question.
They ignore requests for delays. They DUMP their frozen products outside where they melt. They do not ring your bell. Their emails are only marketing.
They have so many phone numbers that they bounce you from one to the other and waiting times in excess of 1 hour or more.”
- S. Xinto
Alternatives To Nutrisystem
You might find that Nutrisystem is not what you thought. So, you might be looking for an alternative to aid in weight loss. Here, you can find some alternatives for you to consider.
Found Weight Loss
Found weight loss program is a sustainable approach to losing weight. It provides coaching sessions and medical appointments to help you make lifestyle changes.
While it is not always the case, there is an option to get prescribed medication that can greatly aid the process.
The program doesn’t provide you with cooked meals, but it guides you on making healthy changes and modifying certain areas of your life to reach your goals.
- It has a psychological approach.
- It offers accountability and support.
- Focuses on long-term results.
- Provides personal coaching with health coaches.
- Doesn’t restrict food.
- It has a holistic approach.
- Contains a complete app.
- Available in different languages.
- Offers a 14-day trial (you set the cost).
- You need to interact with the coaches to get results.
- No face-to-face interaction.
- Too restricting on calories.
- You need to make your food.
Read our comprehensive Noom review here.
- You can choose the trainers for your workouts.
- It has an app.
- Cheaper than an in-person trainer.
- Your first session is free.
- Good customer service.
- You don’t have someone in-person to guide you.
- Limited equipment in your house.
- The initial goal assessment can be more extensive.
- Focuses on exercise.
- You need to prepare your food.
Read our comprehensive FlexIt review here.
Our Recommendation: Found Weight Loss
Found Weight Loss is a better option for those that want to lose weight. While it doesn’t provide you with cooked meals, it guides you toward healthier habits and long-term weight loss.
In other words, once you stop the program, you can continue to lose weight and maintain it. On the other hand, with Nutrisystem, you depend on the meals you receive. You have to put effort into the coaching and educational part.
Also, Found has better reviews than Nutrisystem, with good customer service.
One of the main complaints with Nutrisystem is that the portions are very small, which leaves people feeling hungry.
With Found, they help you create a customized meal plan. It’s tailored to help manage your hunger levels, and a doctor might prescribe medication to make things easier.
The price is also more affordable. The cheapest plan starts at $99 per month.
Keep in mind that this doesn’t provide you with the food, so you must purchase it yourself. But, if you’re grocery-savvy, you might still keep your grocery bill low.
Here’s a quick review of why we recommend Found, with a few drawbacks to be aware of.
- Has board-certified doctors to meet via chat or video.
- If you need medication, you get it delivered.
- Flexible program that promotes long-term results.
- It has a personal coach to guide you and provide support.
- Facebook community.
- It has an app.
- 90-day money-back guarantee.
- The Rx program is not available in all states.
- No trial period.
- You communicate with your coaches via SMS, not the app.
- The medication might cause side effects.
Nutrisystem vs. Found Weight Loss
To further demonstrate why Found is a better option, here is a table comparing the main features of each program.
|Feature||Nutrisystem||Found Weight Loss|
|Coaching sessions||Not mandatory||Mandatory|
|Price||Starting at $500||Starting at $99|
Where To Join Found Weight Loss
If you want more details on Found program, you can check our full Found review to determine if this is the right option.
We’ve come to the end of this Nutrisystem review.
Nutrisystem provides a good solution for those people that don’t have enough time to grocery shop or prepare their meals. Since the program sends you already-made meals, it can save you a lot of time while you lose weight.
However, because their meal plans come from very low-calorie diets, it can create more hunger, mood problems, and hormonal imbalances.
For sustainable weight loss, nutritional education should be the program’s foundation. Nonetheless, in the case of Nutrisystem, it is an optional trait or at least one that isn’t promoted enough.
Finally, the bad reviews regarding customer service create a huge concern.
For this reason, Found’s weight loss program is a better option that offers long-term and sustainable results.
While they don’t provide meals, you can learn how to create lifestyle changes starting with what you’re already eating.
You can learn more from the official Found Weight Loss website here.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Nutrisystem healthy?
Nutrisystem provides healthy meals. However, their low-calorie approach might cause more problems long-term than positive outcomes.
Low-calorie diets can leave you feeling hungry, create problems in the metabolism, and create hormonal imbalances.
What fruits can you eat on a Nutrisystem diet?
You can eat bananas, berries, apples, oranges, cantaloupe, grapefruit, mandarin oranges, peach, pineapple, and watermelon.
Is Nutrisystem good for diabetes?
Yes, but you need to choose Nutrisystem D, which is the option for people with diabetes.
Can you eat potatoes on Nutrisystem?
No, potatoes are high in the glycemic index, so they are not allowed. Instead, you can choose sweet potatoes or yams.
What foods can’t you eat on a Nutrisystem diet?
Processed foods and foods with a high glycemic index (like white bread, white pasta, cookies, cakes, and sugars) are not allowed on the Nutrisystem diet.
What vegetables can you eat on Nutrisystem?
You can have any vegetable as long as it’s a non-starchy vegetable. Some options are leafy greens, mushrooms, eggplant, zucchini, and cucumbers.
Can you eat salad on Nutrisystem?
Yes, you can eat salads on Nutrisystem. However, you need to be careful with the toppings. Salads mostly made with non-starchy vegetables are ok. Limit dressings and other foods like avocado and nuts.
Do you have to exercise on Nutrisystem?
They recommend reaching the World Health Organization’s recommendation of 150 minutes of light to moderate exercise per week.
However, during the first week, they recommend pausing exercise while your body adapts.
Can I drink alcohol on Nutrisystem?
Nutrisystem recommends limiting alcohol intake since they provide empty calories (foods that only provide calories and no nutrients). If you decide to drink, they recommend going with the ones with a lower calorie and sugar content. For example, instead of sweet wine, opt for dry wine.
Does Nutrisystem have low-sodium meals?
No, they don’t offer low-sodium meals. On average, you might obtain 400 to 500 mg of sodium per meal. However, if these are the only meals you have, this would still be in the recommended intake of fewer than 2,300 mg daily.
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