The Best Weight Loss Programs of 2022: Start Your Fitness Journey

weight watchers app


Do you wish you could drop a few pounds, perhaps lose some stubborn fat, and ultimately look trim and healthy? If so, you're hardly alone. The desire for substantial weight loss is close to universal, and often, it can seem close to unattainable. One way to make real progress toward your  is by recognizing that you can't do it alone. To see results, and to enable sustainable lifestyle change, you may need the help of a credible weight loss program.

Luckily, there are a number of weight loss programs to choose from. Of course, these work best when you combine nutritional guidelines with regular cardio and personal training, and perhaps even use a fitness tracker to monitor your progress. You may even consider weight-loss supplements.

To help you get started, here's a guide to some of the best weight loss programs available today, as chosen by the ACTIVE Reviews Team.

Why Trust Us?

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The Best Weight Loss Programs - Our Top Picks

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  • Featured Pick: Noom
  • Best All-Encompassing Fitness, Nutrition, Weight Loss Coaching Program: MetPro
  • Best Customizable Weight Loss Program Profile
  • Best Low Carb Weight Loss Program: Freshly
  • Best Educational Weight Loss Program: Weight Watchers
  • Best Plant-Based Weight Loss Program: Cronometer
  • Best Techy Weight Loss Program: Lumen
  • Best Vegetarian Weight Loss Program: Diet-to-Go

What to Look for When Choosing a Weight Loss Program

Weight loss programs work in many different ways, and there isn't necessarily one "correct" approach. It's more about what works best for you and your specific goals. With that said, here are a few characteristics that effective weight loss programs tend to have in common.

  • Sustainability: A focus on sustainable behavior changes, as opposed to short-term fixes, will keep you from going in circles. Choose a weight loss program you can stick to that is effective in changing your lifestyle, rather than simply moving the scale.
  • Safety: Your weight loss program should provide advice about if and when to discuss weight loss goals with your doctor. It should also suggest weight loss at a healthy pace. Losing weight the wrong way or too quickly can lead to malnutrition and eating disorders.
  • Credibility: Does the program provide input from registered dieticians? Find out who the experts are behind the program and make sure they are credible sources.
  • Clear Expectations: Make sure the program you choose has clear expectations for reasonable outcomes. You should have a firm grasp on the timeline for your weight loss and a clear plan on how you will achieve it.
  • Exercise: Choose a plan that puts an emphasis on consistent exercise and sound nutrition.
  • Educational: The plan should encourage you to self-monitor your progress and make you the center of the experience. Experts are great and can help guide you, but gaining a solid understanding of your own nutrition will help you be successful in the long run, long after the plan has ended.

Featured Pick - Noom

Noom

How it Works: Weight loss isn't merely about eating right and exercising. It's also about changing your entire psychological relationship with food. The Noom app recognizes that and seeks to aid you in that process by helping to educate and inform you about the connections between food, stress, and boredom. The program includes fitness tracking tools and personalized daily lessons to help you make sustainable lifestyle changes. That way, you're not just losing weight but potentially managing stress better, too.

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What We Like

  • Emphasis on weight loss and stress reduction
  • Personalized lessons
  • Great app for logging meals, exercise, etc.
  • Highly personalized
  • Focus on long-term change

What We Don't Like

  • Not as recommended if you're looking for prepared meals, meal replacement, etc.
  • Requires a little time spent with the app each day

BUY: Noom

Read our full review of Noom

Best All-Encompassing Fitness, Nutrition, Weight Loss Coaching Program – MetPro

MetPro

How it Works: MetPro's claim to fame is its depth of research into metabolic behavior. Simply put, they create a profile of how your specific metabolism works and develop a fitness plan around your daily caloric needs. This plan includes fitness and lifestyle coaching and nutritional guidelines emphasizing whole foods. MetPro gives you the tools and guidance needed to create and cook your meal plan for the ultimate goal of sustainable weight loss for a healthy lifestyle. An example of a meal with this program is shrimp and veggie pasta, so you can enjoy yummy foods while eating healthier.

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What We Like

  • Personalized to your metabolic profile
  • Access to credentialed person trainers and registered dieticians
  • Science- and data-driven
  • Incorporates nutritional as well as lifestyle coaching
  • Excellent choice for athletes

What We Don't Like

  • Requires a really high level of commitment (can be difficult to cut processed foods out completely)
  • Higher price point
  • Not the best bet for those seeking something more flexible

BUY: MetPro

Best Customizable Weight Loss Program – Profile

Profile

How it Works: Profile is one of the most endlessly customizable weight loss programs around, offering numerous ways to match your plan with your health considerations, lifestyle, and weight loss goals. Your personalized meal plan may include a combination of meal replacement, whole foods, and ready-made meals, depending on your preferences. The meal replacement options are tasty and appealing, with a range of flavors to choose from. And as you progress, your meal plans may receive ongoing revision from credible doctors and dieticians.

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What We Like

  • Extremely customizable
  • Wide range of meal replacement and ready-made meal options
  • Bars and shakes are tasty and satisfying
  • Insight from licensed physicians and nutrition experts

What We Don't Like

  • The app experience is just so-so
  • Requires a real commitment to your personal nutrition plan

BUY: Profile

Best Low Carb Weight Loss Program – Freshly

Freshly

How it Works: There are many approaches to weight loss, and each of them can potentially prove effective. If you're looking for a plan that minimizes carb intake (and emphasizes fat and protein intake), Freshly is your best bet. With this plan, you can map out an entire month's worth of healthy, delicious, carb-light meals. Those meals are prepared and shipped to your home, where all you have to do is heat them up and enjoy. Eat and repeat and cancel whenever you want. Not only can this be a great way to lose weight, but it's also a really convenient option for folks who don't have a lot of time to cook homemade, low-carb meals.

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What We Like

  • Very convenient
  • Meals are tasty and healthy
  • Lots of variety on the menu, and you can pick the things you like or don't like

What We Don't Like

  • Higher price point
  • Costs compound if you're getting meals for your spouse or your whole family

BUY: Freshly

Best Educational Weight Loss Program – Weight Watchers

weight watchers app

How it Works: Weight Watchers is one of the longest-running, successful, and most acclaimed weight loss programs in the country. It's not hard to see why: The program encourages simple yet substantial lifestyle changes that can be easily sustained, including self-monitoring, an emphasis on sensible meal-planning, and a balance between discipline and flexibility. The new PersonalPoints program provides individualized plans, allowing you to continue enjoying foods you love (think ice cream, burgers, etc.) while still keeping tabs on caloric and nutrient intake.

Also note that Weight Watchers has advanced considerably in recent years, and now offers an incredible app experience to help you log your meals and connect with other program participants. Choose from three different plans, all available at different price points, which offer a variety of perks like unlimited 1:1 coaching and in-person meetings.

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What We Like

  • Highly personalized approach
  • Emphasis on sensible nutrition and meal prepping
  • Great app experience; user-friendly
  • Easy ways to connect with other participants
  • Allows for some fun and flexibility

What We Don't Like

  • Requires you to be consistent with logging and tracking what you eat
  • Takes a little set-up time for your personalized program to be ready
  • Amount of information on the app may be overwhelming to some

BUY: Weight Watchers

Read our full review of Weight Watchers

Best Plant-Based Weight Loss Program – Cronometer

Cronometer

How it Works: Looking for a way to improve your diet, focusing specifically on plant-based eating? Cronometer may be the best option. This app allows you to track nutritional needs, exercise, and biometrics, all while encouraging you to develop healthy, nutrient-balanced eating habits. Reports and charts make it easy for you to make data-driven decisions about what you put into your body. And with custom diet settings, you can input whether you're a vegetarian, vegan, or following a keto diet.

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What We Like

  • Excellent option for plant-based diets
  • Emphasis on nutrient-rich eating
  • Lots of valuable charts and metrics to inform your decision-making
  • Very easy to get started in the app

What We Don't Like

  • Not quite as flexible or casual as other options
  • More focused on nutrition than exercise

BUY: Cronometer

Best Techy Weight Loss Program – Lumen

Lumen

How it Works: Do you think of yourself as pretty tech-savvy? If so, Lumen is a savvy and sophisticated weight loss option. This app places a wealth of information in the palm of your hand, empowering you to make wise decisions about your lifestyle. The app is synced with a metabolic tracking device, which you carry with you to ensure up-to-date, personal information. Similar to a fitness tracker, the real-time tracking features include activity, eating, sleep, and more.

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What We Like

  • Tons of real-time tracking features
  • Compact, low-profile device
  • A wealth of information contained in the app
  • Highly personalized

What We Don't Like

  • Not recommended if you're less than tech-savvy
  • Not recommended if you're looking for prepared meals or meal replacement
  • Less geared toward athletes

BUY: Lumen

Read our full review of Lumen

Best Vegetarian Weight Loss Program - Diet-to-Go

Diet-to-Go

How it Works: Diet-to-Go is a medical weight loss program that ships chef-prepared meals to your home each and every week, making it incredibly simple and convenient for you to eat right. And, if you want a way to lose weight while also adhering to a vegetarian lifestyle, this is definitely a viable option. Diet-to-Go meals are yummy, nutrient-rich, totally personalized (so those with restrictions or on a vegetarian diet can input these specifications), and ready to heat-and-eat in mere minutes.

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What We Like

  • Very convenient
  • Great vegetarian options
  • Personalized
  • Delicious, chef-prepared meals

What We Don't Like

  • Higher price point
  • Less emphasis on working out

BUY: Diet-to-Go

The Best Way to Lose Weight Successfully

Once you’ve chosen a weight loss program, you’ll want to use it in a way that is successful and sustainable. Here are some tips for how to lose weight effectively on a weight loss program:

  • Eat a variety of foods: Reducing the amount of food you eat doesn’t mean you have to reduce the types of food you eat. Maintaining variety will increase your chances of success. Restricting or cutting out entire foods or food groups is incredibly unsustainable. Focus instead on moderation.
  • Find motivation: There is no doubt that weight loss programs can be difficult, especially when first starting out. Create small goals for yourself and help motivate yourself to do them with little rewards. Whether this means buying certain things at different milestones or tracking progress with photos and documenting your journey to make it more enjoyable, find what works for you and implement it.
  • Make it fun: Some people follow plans with friends to make the process more social. Others blast music while meal planning as a stress reliever. Whatever you need to do to make the process enjoyable - do it!

FAQs About Weight Loss Programs


What is the most effective weight loss program?

While we consider Weight Watchers to be the first among equals, the reality is that the most effective weight loss program is going to vary from person to person. It's important to seek a credible, sensible weight loss program that aligns with your specific lifestyle and your goals.

What weight loss program do doctors recommend?

Our list includes a number of weight loss programs that emphasize a balance between sensible eating and consistent exercise, along with realistic expectations about weight loss results. These are all in line with medical recommendations.

Are weight loss programs worth the cost?

Ultimately, this is something you have to decide for yourself. However, through consistent adherence to a weight loss program, you can certainly see real, potentially life-changing results.

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