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medifast or the south beach diet

Medifast vs. South Beach Diet: Which Is Better?

South Beach Diet or Medifast; Which is better? The South Beach Diet and Medifast are two big names in meal-delivery diets, but which one is best? Actually, no single diet is best for every individual, so the better question mighty be “which diet is best for you?”

Let’s take a look at both of these weight loss programs, comparing expert ratings, customer reviews, and cost to determine which heavyweights (or lightweights?) is better for your unique personality and lifestyle.


Comparison: Expert Ratings

medifast ratingrating south beach diet

Each year U.S. News asks a panel of health and diet experts to rate and review a list of top diets in important categories. While Medifast and the South Beach Diet received similar scores, their strengths and weaknesses varied.

  • South Beach Diet: In their assessment, experts ranked the South Beach diet highly for being healthy and relatively convenient. However, the diet received a relatively low score for long-term weight loss
  • Medifast is known as a fast weight loss diet, and it does predictably well in that category. however, it seems that some users tire or stray from the diet, as it gets a low score for long-term weight loss and for not being easy to follow

Ok, now we know a little bit about what the experts think. Let’s see what customers have to say.


Customer Reviews: South Beach Diet vs. Medifast

In comparing these two diets, we have the benefit of looking at hundreds of honest customer reviews online. For Medifast, we found that ConsumerAffairs.com was the best resource for reviews, while for South Beach, it was the user review section of their site:

medifast customer ratingssouth beach diet customer ratings

As you can see, while both diets received more positive ratings than negative, there’s a wide range of ratings. Based on the ratings from user reviews, it looks like South Beach Diet edges out Medifast for customer satisfaction in this round.


How Medifast Works:

medifast logoThe Medifast diet (reviews) was created by a doctor in 1980 to help his patients lose weight. These patients were often obese and/or suffering from Type 2 Diabetes, and other conventional diets had failed them.

The idea of Medifast is to cut calories considerably, typically to only 1000 or fewer calories per day. Medifast also cuts carbs just enough that it trains your body to turn to it’s alternative source of fuel, fat.

It achieves this control over your diet by providing 4 Medifast-prepared meals, (a lot of shakes, bars, and add-water meals) per day plus one lean meat and vegetable meal that you provide called a “lean & green” meal.

There are two Medifast plan options:

  1. Go! offers faster weight loss, and is often preferred by busy people
  2. Flex adds more “real” food and flexibility

Learn more about the two Medifast plans, and compare them here.


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*Get 30% Off the Medifast GO or FLEX Plan! Or, view all coupons here


How the South Beach Diet Works:

south beach diet logoIn 2003 Dr. Arthur Agatston published a hugely successful book called, The South Beach Diet. How successful? To date over 11 million people have tried the diet, and more recently the book was adapted into a meal-delivery diet based on the principles of the book. (and promoted by realty-tv celebrity Jesse James Decker) 

Unlike some diets, the South Beach Diet (reviews) doesn’t label all carbs as “bad,” knowing that the ones you get from sources like fruits and veggies are very good for you. That’s why the South Beach Diet menu is low in bad carbs, but high in protein and good carbs, which help regulate your blood sugar levels.

The South Beach Diet has 3 phases, starting with the crucial “Phase 1,” which is restrictive,  breaking you of bad eating habits and preparing your body for sustainable long-term weight loss in phase 2.

The second phase introduces more menu options, including 3 smaller meals and 3 snacks per day. You can also add in one breakfast, lunch, and dinner of your own making during this phase… learn more.

new promotion south beach*View their featured promotion, or view all couponsnew


South Beach vs. Medifast: “Weight Loss” Ratings Compared

Both of these diets rate well for short term weight loss, with Medifast edging out South Beach. However, because both of these diets involve a lifestyle change to a more restricted diet, they both score much lower for long-term weight loss.

This is probably due to the fact that both diets tell you what to eat and when. Even though their meals are healthy, they fall short of being home-cooking or restaurant-quality food. While initial enthusiasm results in quick weight loss over the first couple of months, it seems that people are more likely to cheat on their diet or tire of mostly prepared meals.


Convenience / Easy to Follow?

Meal delivery diets like South Beach and Medifast deliver food to your door every month. Because their pre-made, pre-portioned meals replace most of your current meals, it can save you hours in meal planning and preparation.

However, neither of these diets scored highly for “easy to follow.” In fact, Medifast is rated especially low in this category, but why? It seems that there is a distinction between being “convenient” and easy to follow.

These two diets are not considered to be exceptionally easy to follow because adapting to their regimen of packaged foods requires a lifestyle change that some people aren’t comfortable making. Situations like dinners out with friends can become challenging for any diet, especially ones that are somewhat restrictive like South Beach Diet and Medifast.

If either of these diets is going to work for you, weight loss results have to “outweigh” the menu freedom that you’re probably accustomed to. Like most diets, these two require making some sacrifices to be successful. For being, “easy to follow,South Beach Diet wins the round over Medifast.


Medifast or South Beach Diet? Cost Comparison

The foundation of both of these diets is the monthly delivery of prepared food to your home. That means that the meals they provide will replace most of the meals you are currently planning and preparing.

This means you’ll pay a lot more for these diets than a DIY alternative, but the positive news is that your monthly grocery and restaurant bill should be significantly less.

  • South Beach Diet: The average cost of the South Beach diet is about $12 per day plus some supplemental food (Save w/ coupon)
  • Medifast: The average cost of Medifast is about $14 per day plus fruits, veggies, and 1 “lean & green” meal per day (Save w/ coupon

So , it looks like the daily and monthly cost of Medifast is slightly more than the cost of the South Beach Diet.


So, Medifast or South Beach Diet?

boxers versusAll diets have strengths and weaknesses. For meal delivery diets, long term weight loss is often an issue, as many people end up tiring of scheduled meals and a restricted menu. Menu freedom is the strength of a DIY diet like Weight Watchers, but WW’s lack of structure doesn’t work for everyone.

In fact, most people who begin meal-delivery diets have already tried the do-it-yourself diets, and are willing to make compromises on food and freedom to achieve their weight loss goals.

So, which diet is better? Medifast scores higher for people who may be obese or suffer from Type 2 diabetes, but overall the South Beach Diet slightly edges out Medifast on the scorecards.


Alternatives to Medifast or South Beach Diet?

Not sold completely on either of these diets? If you want to stick to meal delivery, you can consider Nutrisystem, which is very similar to the South Beach Diet, but slightly cheaper, and rated higher.

*Related: Nutrisystem or South Beach Diet: Which Is Better?

For more of a DIY approach, consider Weight Watchers, the #1 rated weight loss diet that counts points, not calories.

Have you tried both Medifast and the South Beach Diet? Please weigh-in with your own review below:

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medifast reviews

Medifast Reviews | Does this Diet Really Work? (Good + Bad!) • 2019

medifast logoWhat we learned from Medifast reviews: Medifast is a popular meal-delivery program that’s high in protein and low in carbs and calories. It once again made the list of the Top 10 Commercial Diets and promises fast weight loss and diabetes control. But, does it really deliver?

So, Does Medifast Really Work?

Medifast’s website states that “Medifast is safe and effective to do on your own whether you want to lose 15 or 120 or more pounds,” and adds that:

“The average weight loss for Medifast customers on the “Go!” plan is 11 pounds over 8 weeks”

Their own data infers that Medifast works, but let’s consult both expert ratings and customer reviews to learn more. Then, hopefully you can better determine whether it’s a good weight loss program for you. (If it is, we have today’s best coupons here!new)


Expert Ratings:

U.S. News recently asked a group of experts in the health and diet field to rate Medifast on a number of important factors. Here’s how they scored:

medifast ratings weight loss

Medifast ratings from expert reviews

As you can see, in expert reviews Medifast was rated exceptionally high for “short term weight loss,” but low for “long-term weight loss,” and “easy to follow.” This is probably due to the fact that Medifast requires a significant diet and lifestyle change, asking users to eat mostly their pre-packaged meals.

These dietary restrictions don’t work for everyone, and the discrepancy in “weight loss” scores implies that many people tire of the diet and its pre-packaged meals, and either cheat or quit after a few months.

Now, let’s see how users rate Medifast by looking at customer satisfaction scores from user reviews:


Customer Reviews:

So, how do users rate Medifast? On Consumer Affairs, customers were asked to honestly rate their overall satisfaction” of the diet. Here’s how they rated the program:

medifast customer reviews

  • Positive ratings: 57% (4-5 stars)
  • Neutral ratings: 12% (3 stars)
  • Negative ratings: 31% (1-2 stars)

So, in effect when these customers were asked whether Medifast works, 57% said, “yes,” and were satisfied. The other 43% weren’t thrilled, or had a negative review, often complaining that Medifast doesn’t work long term.

However, Medifast claims on their website that more than 3 out of 4 customers said it was effective,” and that their own survey concluded that, “8 out of 10 customers surveyed said the Medifast Plan fit their lifestyle.” 

So, why is Medifast rated lower on Consumer Affairs? When it comes to diets, people who had a negative experience seem to be more likely to quit and write a bad review than customers who were satisfied and stayed on the diet. That’s ok, though, criticism is productive, and there’s a lot to learn from complaints and bad reviews!


Medifast Bad Reviews:

medifast funny review

thumbs down

Sometimes the negative reviews for a diet or weight loss program are the most interesting and helpful. Why did it fail? Why do half the people on the diet eventually quit?

Here are the top 3 complaints from bad customer reviews:

  1. Doesn’t Work Long-Term: Medifast scores relatively low for “long-term weight loss,” getting a score of 2.1/5 from U.S. News
  2. Not enough “real” food: Most Medifast meals are shakes, bars, or just-add-water. Some users end up quitting because they don’t like the taste of the food and miss eating more conventional meals
  3. Too expensive: With a cost of up to $20 per day, the price is relatively high. Even though Medifast meals replace most of your current meals, you’ll still need to supplement the their meals with some groceries

Many people turn to Medifast for fast weight loss. While it usually delivers, reviews support the idea that people often tire of the structured menu and yearn for real food again. Others quit after reaching their goal weight, but may gain the weight back after returning to old eating habits.

Other things that customers complain about in reviews is that there isn’t enough variety on the menu, and that you are encouraged to not drink alcohol. With this diet you have to be willing to give up menu freedom for fast weight loss, or it won’t be effective or enjoyable.

Customer review“Although I’ve lost 15 pounds, sometimes I miss the taste of ‘real’ food at certain meals.” Missy W. Durango, CO

Customer review:  “If I want to just drop 30 lbs on a diet, then it’s good to do Medifast. But as far as being on it long term and maintenance, I do not think it’s very good.” – Edna, Memphis, TN

However, most user reviews for Medifast are positive, so let’s look at what people like about it.


Medifast Good Reviews:

medifast good review

review goodThe world of commercial diets is highly-competitive, so Medifast must be doing something right to still be in the game after 30+ years. Medifast can also boast recommendations from over 20,000 doctors during that time, and a consistent ranking in the top 10 commercial diets. Let’s look at the best qualities of the diet:

  1. Fast initial weight loss: Medifast’s biggest strength is quick weight loss, and it is ranked #3 in “Best Fast Weight Loss Diets” by U.S News & World Report
  2. Nutritious: The original goal of this diet was to create the elusive quality of being low in calories but high in nutrients, which they seem to have achieved
  3. Structured & Simple: If you follow the Medifast Plan, the math says that you are going to lose weight. Customers like the fact that there’s counting of carbs, calories, or points making it a good potential choice for the 50% of people who say they “hate to cook”
  4. Other Diets Didn’t Work: Medifast is a popular diet choice for certain people, including obese and diabetics, who have already tried other diets unsuccessfully and become frustrated. This is not a fad diet or a “lose 10 pounds for a wedding” weight loss program. Medifast offers hope for people who yearn to live a healthy lifestyle, and are willing to accept menu limitations to bring order to back their lives. In fact, Rod Tidwell (Jerry Maguire) Might say that people trying Medifast, “have been to the puppet shows, and have seen the strings.”

A number of customer reviews also mentioned enjoying the support and encouragement they got from others in the Medifast Community online, and from the helpful customer support. Several reviewers mentioned that the convenience of tracking meals and exercise through their FitBit was a plus.

Customer review: “I did exactly what they said to do and in the course of about three and a half months, I lost 53 pounds.” – Jeff, Clive IA

Customer Review: “I lost 50 pounds and my husband lost 90. So, it was very good. But lately, I was out of control. In order for Medifast to work, it’s helpful to make losing weight the most important thing, and it should take priority over everything.” – Milena, Rampa, Fl

Need inspiration? Here’s one of a number of positive and seemingly honest customer testimonials that you can find online:

You can see more testimonials on their site, and find a lot of positive quotes in online reviews:

Ok, so now we have a feel for what experts and customers think of the diet, now let’s learn more about the history of Medifast and how it works.

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*Get 30% Off the Medifast GO or FLEX Plan! Or, view all coupons here


What Is Medifast? Here’s a Brief History

Back in 1980 when most of us were busy playing the newly released “Pac-Man” video game, Dr. William Vitale was busy creating a specially formulated meal plan to help his obese patients lose  significant weight. His mission was to create a healthy diet that provided both initial weight loss and long term, sustainable results.

Dr. Vitale developed a meal plan that he called, “Medifast,” that was nutrient-dense but very low in calories.

After achieving exciting results with his patients, Dr. Vitale soon made the “Medifast diet” available to the public. In the years since, Medifast has never gained the fame that Pac-Man did, but it has helped tens of thousands of people meet their weight loss goals, and has been recommended by thousands of doctors.

So, how does the Medifast diet work?


How Medifast Works:

While on Medifast you’ll eat 6 small meals a day (every 2-3 hours) consisting of a combination of their prepared low-calorie “Medifast meals” and snacks plus 1-2 “Lean & Green” meals that you prepare yourself.

1.) Medifast Meals:

medifast diet meals reviews

Each Medifast meal is high in lean protein and fiber which makes you feel full longer, and helps to eliminate unhealthy cravings. These meals are fortified with 24 essential vitamins and minerals, allowing for significant weight loss without sacrificing on nutrition. The low-glycemic carbs in Medifast food help to regulate your blood sugar levels, making it a popular diet with diabetics.

The meals are also low in carbs and total a mere 1000 calories per day; that’s only half the FDA’s recommended allowance. As you can imagine, this usually results in fast weight loss, as your body learns to burn fat instead of carbs for energy.

2.) Lean and Green Meals: 

lean green medifast meals

Every day you’ll have 1-2 “lean and green” meals, depending on which plan you choose. The “GO” plan includes only one lean & green meal per day, while the “FLEX” plans include two.

  • The “lean” is a serving of any protein from their list of lean options including fish, poultry, and beef
  • The “green” is three servings per day of vegetables from their list of green options which include non-starchy vegetables like spinach, broccoli, cauliflower, and tomatoes

You can choose to make your own Lean & Green meals, or choose their Flex Complete plan which includes frozen ones. There are also a number of lean & green recipes available if you need ideas.

Here’s more about plan options:


Medifast Plan Options: Go or Flex?

Men and women both have the option of two plans, Go!, and Flex. Here’s the difference:

medifast go flex plans

1:) The “GO” Plan:

Formerly called the, “5 & 1 Plan,” the GO plan offers faster results, and is most popular with busy people who want to lose weight quickly. A day of GO includes:

  • 5 Medifast meals
  • 1 “Lean & Green” meal
  • Learn more about the Go! plan here

2:) The “FLEX” Plan: (Select or Complete) 

Formerly called, “Medifast Achieve,” the FLEX plan is their most flexible plan that offers steady, gradual weight loss. Each day on FLEX includes:

  • 4 Medifast meals
  • 2 “lean & green” meals
  • 1 healthy snack
  • Learn more about the FLEX plan here

There are two levels of the FLEX plan: “Select,” and “Complete.” You’ll pay more for the “Complete” kit, as it has more food variety, lean & green meals, and includes Essential1 Heart Health® and Digestive Health® supplements ($50 value) 

The Medifast plan can also adapt to those with special nutrition needs, including diabetes, vegetarian, and gluten free diets.


Which Plan Is Best for You?

medifast good review

To answer that question, consider both your weight loss goals, and your own unique personality. Are you willing to sacrifice food variety for faster results?

  • Faster weight loss: If you are most concerned with losing weight quickly, then consider the GO plan
  • Flexibility: If the idea of eating more “real” grocery store food is appealing, then consider the FLEX plan

Both of these plans include their monthly auto-delivery service called, “Medifast Advantage®.” With Advantage you get a lower, promotional price at signup, plus future discounts, rewards and free shipping.

You’ll remain on either the GO or FLEX plan until you meet your weight-loss goal, after which you’ll transition to a maintenance phase called, “Thrive by Medifast™.”

The cost of Medifast is about $12-15 per day depending on which plan you choose, and which promotion you signup with. Here’s their best promotion for new customers:

So, does it really work? Scouring through hundreds of ratings and customer reviews online we were able to find some common themes. Let’s look at both the good and bad reviews, and learn whether it’s a good option for you.


Medifast Food Reviews

Medifast doesn’t score highly for their food, and you might just call it “adequate.” Most Medifast Meals are shakes, bars, and “just add water” meals that fall far short of a meal from the Olive Garden. But, then again, at 1900 calories, the Olive Garden’s Fettuccine Alfredo might be the reason you’re here in the first place!

Anyway, while their packaged food is uninspiring, the daily “lean & green” meal(s) are your only chance to eat something special.

*Metaphor alert: Think of it this way: You’re going on a journey, like someone who plans to scale a mountain. It’s not easy, so you need good gear and a map, and you know the food won’t be great. However, the view from the summit is worth the effort. That’s what Medifast is like.


Food Nutrition:

Medifast meals are low in calories (1000 per day) and carbs (85g per day). These meals are high in protein and fortified with 24 vitamins and minerals so that you can lose weight without losing out on nutrition.

These Medifast meals are also similar in nutritional content which means that you can substitute meals at any time without concern for your daily nutrition.

Every Medifast meal and snack lists Nutritional info and ingredients:

medifast food nutritional info

This is especially helpful if you have any allergies or want to know the exact amount of carbs, protein, fiber, sodium, or fat.

Medifast food is low in carbs and each day you’ll consume about 50g fewer carbs than the FDA’s recommended amount. This will help to curb cravings and teach your body to burn fat for energy instead of carbs.


Sample Menu:

medifast shakes reviews

Medifast shake and a sample “lean and green” meal

What does a typical day of meals look like when you’re on Medifast Flex? Here are sample menus:

Sample Menu: (Day 1)

  • Breakfast: Maple & Brown Sugar Oatmeal*
  • Mid-Morning: Pineapple Mango Smoothie*
  • Lunch: Ziti Marinara*
  • Mid-Afternoon Snack: Peanut Butter Crunch Bar*
  • Dinner: (recipe) Chicken Stir-Fry w/ Broccoli & Red Peppers 

Sample Menu: (Day 2)

  • Breakfast: French Vanilla Shake*
  • Mid-Morning: Fruit & Nut Crunch Bar*
  • Lunch: Vegetable Chili*
  • Mid-Afternoon:  Cheese Pizza Bites*
  • Dinner: (recipe) Grilled Salmon w/ Asparagus 

*Medifast meals
‡ Lean & Green meals

For meals that you can make on your own, you’ll find lots of recipes on their blog here


Medical Studies (Kind of Boring!)

Now let’s look at independent studies to determine whether Medifast works. Studies and clinical trials notoriously stop short of publishing success rates or actually concluding that any diet truly “does work,” but here’s what they said:

1.) A 2015 study by Johns Hopkins Medicine found that: “Participants in low-calorie meal programs, such as Medifast, lost more weight than nonparticipants in trials lasting 4-6 months.” 

2.) Another positive review came from nih.gov, which concluded that: “In obese adults, a meal replacement diet resulted in significantly greater reductions in body weight and fat compared with a food-based diet for 1 year after randomization.”

3.) The International Journal of Obesity compared Medifast to a conventional food-based diet of similar calories. They found that, “Medifast resulted in significantly greater reductions in body weight and fat after 1 year.” study

4.) Medifast Reviews from Mayo Clinic – The Mayo Clinic lists Medifast among its “meal replacement” diet options but notes that with all meal-delivery programs you have to make healthy choices for nutritional balance. (The Mayo Clinic also offers their own highly-rated diet, too) 

Ok, thanks for the generic answers! It seems the best way to answer the question of whether Medifast works is to consult the wisdom of the masses by looking over the scores of customer reviews online.


In Summary:

medifast reviews

medifast logoThe Medifast diet is not for everyone. The weight loss program scores highly in expert ratings and and user reviews for “quick weight loss” but lower for “long-term weight loss.” This may be because of the nature of the diet which relies on prepackaged “meals” that are mostly shakes, bars, or food that you add water to.

With Medifast you’ll only have 1-2 “real” meals a day, and even those “lean and green” meals have to meet specific high-protein, low-carb guidelines.

If cooking or eating “real food” with few limitations is important to you, then Medifast might not be a good fit. However, if fast weight loss and structure are most important, then it’s worth considering.

Thinking of trying Medifast? Like we said, the diet has it’s strengths and weaknesses, but works for the majority of people.


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*Get 30% Off the GO or FLEX Plan! Or, view all coupons here


Medifast Alternatives:

There is no single diet that works for everyone, so be sure to compare Medifast against other popular diets like:

*Many people also ask us whether or not Nutriststem works, which we are happy to answer as well! 


Your Medifast Review?

If you have tried the Medifast diet, please rate it and leave your own review below:

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How Medifast Works | 2 New Plan Options: Which Is Best for You?

medifast logoHow does Medifast work? Medifast has been a top name in meal-delivery diets for over 30 years. Although the diet is still true to its roots as a nutritious low calorie, low-carb weight loss plan, it’s gone though some changes recently. Here’s an overview of the diet and their new plan options, “Go!” and “Flex.” (*We have 3 new Medifast coupons!) 

What Is Medifast? A Brief History

Back in 1980 when most of us were busy playing the newly released “Pac-Man” video game, Dr. William Vitale was busy creating a specially formulated meal plan to help his obese patients lose  significant weight. His mission was to create a healthy diet that provided both initial weight loss and long term, sustainable results.

Dr. Vitale developed a meal plan that he called, “Medifast,” that was nutrient-dense but very low in calories.

After achieving exciting results with his patients, Dr. Vitale soon made the “Medifast diet” available to the public. In the years since, Medifast has never gained the fame that Pac-Man did, but it has helped tens of thousands of people meet their weight loss goals, and has been recommended by thousands of doctors.

So, how does the Medifast diet work?


How Medifast Works:

While on Medifast you’ll eat 6 small meals a day (every 2-3 hours) consisting of a combination of their prepared low-calorie “Medifast meals” and snacks plus 1-2 “Lean & Green” meals that you prepare yourself.

1.) Medifast Meals:

medifast diet meals reviews

Each Medifast meal is high in lean protein and fiber which makes you feel full longer, and helps to eliminate unhealthy cravings. These meals are fortified with 24 essential vitamins and minerals, allowing for significant weight loss without sacrificing on nutrition. The low-glycemic carbs in Medifast food help to regulate your blood sugar levels, making it a popular diet with diabetics.

The meals are also low in carbs and total a mere 1000 calories per day; that’s only half the FDA’s recommended allowance. As you can imagine, this usually results in fast weight loss, as your body learns to burn fat instead of carbs for energy.

2.) Lean and Green Meals: 

lean green medifast meals

Every day you’ll have 1-2 “lean and green” meals, depending on which plan you choose. The “GO” plan includes only one lean & green meal per day, while the “FLEX” plans include two.

  • The “lean” is a serving of any protein from their list of lean options including fish, poultry, and beef
  • The “green” is three servings per day of vegetables from their list of green options which include non-starchy vegetables like spinach, broccoli, cauliflower, and tomatoes

You can choose to make your own Lean & Green meals, or choose their Flex Complete plan which includes frozen ones. There are also a number of lean & green recipes available if you need ideas.

Here’s more about plan options:


Medifast Plan Options: Go or Flex?

Men and women both have the option of two plans, Go!, and Flex. Here’s the difference:

medifast flex go plans

1:) The “GO” Plan:

Formerly called the, “5 & 1 Plan,” the GO plan offers faster results, and is most popular with busy people who want to lose weight quickly. A day of GO includes:

  • 5 Medifast meals
  • 1 “Lean & Green” meal

*You can learn more about the GO plan here

2:) The “FLEX” Plan: (Select or Complete) 

Formerly called, “Medifast Achieve,” the FLEX plan is their most flexible plan that offers steady, gradual weight loss. Each day on FLEX includes:

    • 4 Medifast meals
    • 2 “lean & green” meals
    • 1 healthy snack

There are two levels of the FLEX plan: “Select,” and “Complete.” You’ll pay more for the “Complete” kit, as it has more food variety, lean & green meals, and includes Essential1 Heart Health® and Digestive Health® supplements ($50 value) 

The Medifast plan can also adapt to those with special nutrition needs, including diabetes, vegetarian, and gluten free diets.

*You can learn more about the FLEX plan here


Which Plan Is Best for You

women exercising diet

I heard the FLEX plan is killer-diller, jive-bombers!

To answer that question, consider both your weight loss goals, and your own unique personality. Are you willing to sacrifice food variety for faster results?

  • Faster weight loss: If you are most concerned with losing weight quickly, then consider the GO plan
  • Flexibility: If the idea of eating more “real” grocery store food is appealing, then consider the FLEX plan

Both of these plans include their monthly auto-delivery service called, “Medifast Advantage®.” With Advantage you get a lower, promotional price at signup, plus future discounts, rewards and free shipping.

You’ll remain on either the GO or FLEX plan until you meet your weight-loss goal, after which you’ll transition to a maintenance phase called, “Thrive by Medifast™.”

Still Interested?

If you’re still considering the Medifast program, we recommend you read what we learned from reviews, include the pro’s and con’s of the program. We also wrote an article that explains the cost of the diet, which can be lowered significantly if you use a coupon:

promotion banner *Get 30% Off the GO or FLEX Plan! Or, view all coupons here

Not Interested In Medifast?

If you don’t like the idea of eating a lot of bars, shakes, and “just add water” meals, there are other popular meal delivery diet options like Nutrisystem (reviews, cost, coupons) South Beach Diet (reviews, cost, coupons) and BistroMD (reviews, cost, coupons)

If you don’t like the idea of paying for prepared meals, you can also consider the #1 rated Weight Watchers (reviews, cost, coupons) with optional meetings.

Did we miss anything? If you have any helpful info about how Medifast Works, let us know with a comment below:

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buy whole milk instead of skim healthier

DON’T Buy Skim Milk: Choose Whole, 2% Fat, Almond, or Soy Milk Instead

When shopping in the grocery store, you likely have your own habits. Whether we like it or not, we’re all slaves to certain brands or products. We just get used to buying them regularly, which means that we’re much less likely to stray away from them and try something new. After all, why bother changing things up when you’re happy with the products you get?

The moment you reach the milk aisle, you likely know just what you’re going to reach for. You barely have to think about it at all. You simply glance up, grab the familiar-looking bottle, and move on. Many of us ladies tend to stick to skim milk for one unsurprising reason – we believe that it’s the healthiest option out there.

I mean, the government specifically tells us so on myplate.gov:

“Choose fat-free or low-fat milk. If you usually drink whole milk, switch gradually to fat-free milk, to lower saturated fat and calories”

But, wait, what if they’re wrong? Could the very institution that amassed a $20 trillion dollar debt ,  liberated Iraq, and invented government cheese be wrong about milk?!

Full-fat dairy products may be healthier, according to science

Steering clear of dairy fat (or, indeed, any types of fat) may seem like a natural thing to do. Whether you’re trying to lose weight or simply lower your cholesterol, it makes sense to cut back on the things that you assume are bad for your general health. But, here’s the interesting thing, full-fat is not always as terrible for you as you may initially assume.

While you may think that less fat means less harm to your body, that’s not always the case. According to a recent Swedish study, eating high-fat dairy products is actually linked to alowerrisk of obesity. It sounds odd since we’re told to believe that less fat on our lips means less fat on our hips. Sometimes, though, a little healthy fat can do our bodies a whole load of good.

And that’s not the only research to suggest that eating a little more real dairy could keep us healthy. In fact, last year, another 2016 study found a surprising link between eating dairy fat and lowering your risk of diabetes. Again, the suggestion here was that introducing a little more full-fat dairy into your diet could have some positive health benefits.

buy skim milk weight loss

The problem with skim milk: Buy milk with fat instead

If you’re still loyal to skim milk, (also known as “skimmed” milk in Canada and the U.K.) there’s one thing that you ought to know before you go gulping away. The skimming process does not simply mean taking the fat out of your milk and leaving you with a delicious and not-so-creamy product. There’s a whole load more to it, actually. While the manufacturers have to remove certain elements of the milk, they also have to replacement them with something.

Shockingly, much of the time, the thing they use as a replacement is –sugar! The main issue with that is that it makes your sugar intake surge immensely without you even knowing it and that could be making your pile on those extra pounds.

Weight Watchers & Milk

weight watchers coupon logoSo, the interesting thing is that popular diets like Weight Watchers seem to make a point of favoring the low-fat or skim milk options in their plans. In fact, Weight Watchers Online (view today’s coupons) even says:

“Keep in mind that only “non-fat” (0% milk fat) and “low-fat” (typically labeled as 1% milk fat) items count towards the Weight Watchers Good Health Guidelines for dairy. “Reduced-fat” items (typically labeled as 2% milk fat) do not.

However, even though whole milk is going to cost you more Weight Watchers points (PointsPlus), they do emphasize the benefits of drinking milk of any kind, and list dairy dairy milk alternatives on weightwatchers.com along with PointsPlus values:

Milk: Weight Watchers PointsPlus values per cup:

  • almond milkWhole dairy: 4
  • Reduced-fat milk: 3
  • Lowfat (1%) milk: 3
  • Nonfat / skim milk: 2
  • Buttermilk: 3
  • Goat’s milk: 5
  • Sheep’s milk: 7
  • Almond milk (unsweetened): 2
  • Coconut milk: (light) 6
  • Rice milk: 3
  • Soy milk (fat-free): 2

Don’t Buy Skim Milk: Consider Whole, Soy Milk, or Almond Milk Instead

Well, one way to include more full-fat dairy in your diet is to opt for either whole milk2% milk or a non-dairy alternative rather than skim. This tiny change to your regular routine is certain to ensure that you get a decent dose of dairy on a regular basis.

You can also take the advice of diets like Medifast and consider some of the healthy non-dairy alternatives that are out there like soy milk and almond milk which have half the calories (and half the Weight Watchers PointsPlus) as 2% or whole milk.

You could also consider snacking on full-fat yogurt when you get a chance and even indulging in a little tasty cottage cheese now and then. No, really. According to the research we’ve already mentioned, doing so could reduce your risk of obesity and diabetes. It may seem counter to your instincts, but it could be just the change you need.

government milk recommendations

Mother, Should I Trust The Government?

It’s also interesting to note that the Harvard Healthy Eating Plate (the hipster rival to the U.S. government’s “MyPlate”) omits the glass of dairy milk altogether, replacing it with a glass of water and adds, “you should limit milk / dairy to 1-2 servings a day.”

Hmmm… I wonder if milk’s ubiquitous presence on MyPlate has to do with the fact that the dairy lobby spends over $7 million each year to lobby the U.S. government? I mean, they’d probably recommend that we all suck our milk directly out of a wild buffalo if someone paid them enough.

Anyway, enough about politics. As with everything, your intake of dairy products should be in moderation. Living a healthy lifestyle is all about exercising and eating a balanced diet. With that in mind, cutting dairy fat out of your diet altogether seems a little ludicrous, right?

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medifast diet meals reviews

(Trusted) Medifast Ratings: 3 Top Health Sites Weigh In

medifast coupon logoWant to read real Medifast Reviews? If you are searching for important answers to questions like, “how much does Medifast cost,” or “is Medifast recommended for diabetics,” you want straight answers. First, here’s an overview, and then the best places to find credible ratings & reviews.

*New: Our review of Medifast

medifast shakes reviews

Medifast Diet Summary: How Does It Work?

Medifast dieters eat 6 small meals a day, 5 of which are Medifast products like shakes, bars, and soup. The 6th meal can be eaten anytime, and consists of a “lean and green” entree consisting of a protein (healthy fish, chicken, or other meat or vegetable protein).

As you can imagine, this often results in fast weight loss, as you are drastically reducing the number of calories that you consume.  Medifast costs about $300 per month (similar to Nutrisystem) in their packaged meals, plus the cost of your one other meal each day.

Once you reach your ideal weight, you transition into a maintenance phase which establishes your ideal caloric intake, and weans you off of their meals.

  • Positives: Medifast ranks highly as a fast weight-loss diet, (2-5 pounds a week) and it’s relatively easy, as there are no points to calculate or counting calories or carbs. Positive reviews mention seeing fast results
  • Negatives: The downside of the fast weight loss is that it is low-calorie with limited menu options from their product line, and small portions. About half of dieters drop out before the first year is over. Eating out can be challenging, and drinking alcohol is not encouraged, as it is high in calories and can make you hungry.

For that reason, we’ve highlighted the best ratings and reviews of the Medifast diet for you to consider, but first, here’s a quick overview.


does medifast work

Medifast Diet Review from WebMD

logo webmdWebMD employs an actual doctor to give a good, unbiased review of Medifast on their site. Here are some of the questions that they address:

Read the review at WebMD.comnew

  • Does Medifast work, and how much effort is needed for success?
  • What can you eat, and what are the limitations and restrictions?
  • Is Medifast recommended for people with diabetes?
  • Is there a Medifast plan for vegetarians?
  • Do they accommodate gluten-free diets?
  • How many calories do you eat a day? (800-1000 during first phase) 
  • How much does Medifast cost, and does it work?

medifast rating us diets

Consumer Affairs: Customer Reviews & Complaints

Read Medifast reviews at ConsumerAffairs.comnew

If you are looking for honest, often negative reviews of a diet or weight loss program, check out Consumer Affairs. You’ll here a lot of positive reviews here, but It’s often a place for dissatisfied customers to vent about their negative experience. Like Yelp, they also do a pretty good job of verifying reviews so that they are real.

If you’re thinking about starting a diet, it’s worth scrolling through their 100+ verified customer reviews for Medifast.


medifast brownies review

Medifast Rating & Review from U.S. News & World Report

View Medifast Ratings from U.S. Newsnew

us news world reportU.S. News & World report rated 38 of the most popular weight loss programs and ranked them in 4 major categories on a scale of 1-5:

  • Short-term weight loss: 3.5
  • Long-term weight loss: 2.0
  • Easy to follow: 2.4
  • Healthiness: 3.0

As you can see, their ratings reinforce the customer reviews that Medifast scores high for fast weight loss, but gets mediocre results in other rating categories. They also do a good job of answering common questions related to cost, expected weight loss, ease of diet, role of exercise, and whether it really works.


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*Get 30% Off the GO or FLEX Plan! Or, view all coupons here

Read the Bad, Ugly, & Negative Reviews, Too!

thumbs downSometimes the negative reviews for a diet or weight loss program are the most interesting and helpful. Why did it fail? Why do half the people on the diet quit?

One option might seem like the perfect weight loss program on paper, but everyone is different. Also, be sure to compare Medifast against other popular diets like Weight Watchers & the Nutrisystem diet. If you specifically want to find negative reviews, check out sites like pissedconsumer.com.

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farro grain health benefits

Farro Health Benefits + Which Kind Is Best For You?

FARRO: The Trendy, Not-so-new, “Supergrain”

Step aside quinoa. Farro is not only here, but it seems to be everywhere. Surely you’ve seen farro dishes gracing the menus at all the trendiest spots. While it may seem as though farro’s popularity sprouted overnight, (my spell-checking doesn’t even recognize it yet! Did you mean, “Fargo,” or perhaps, “Mia Farrow?”) the truth is, farro is an ancient grain that has been around for centuries.

This newly-hailed “supergrain” served as a staple for the Roman legions and tantalized the tastebuds of Egyptian kings. However, as more and more people embrace the health benefits of whole grains, farro’s popularity has taken off and this light and slightly nutty grain is finding its way into a variety of recipes, from salads to breakfast bowls.

farro salad recipe

What Are the Weight Loss / Health-Benefits of Farro

But why farro? What are the health benefits? For starters, farro is high in fiber, which makes it a heart-healthy food that is great for digestion. In fact, one ½ cup serving of farro contains around seven grams of cholesterol-reducing fiber. Fiber rich foods also keep you feeling full for longer, which should cut out those cravings.

Vegetarian? Or perhaps you are trying to cut down on your meat consumption? Farro is a wonderful source of plant-based protein, in fact, this ancient grain provides the same amount of protein you would find in most beans and legumes.

Farro also contains a higher amount of antioxidants than wheat and other types of whole grains, including phenolic compounds, which are shown to be linked to disease prevention. The specific compound found in farro, called cyanogenic glucosides, can help boost immunity levels, lower inflammation and cholesterol, as well as regulate blood sugar levels.

Which Type of Farro Should You Buy: Whole, Semi-Pearled, or Pearled?

farro grain bagNow that you know the health benefits of farro, it’s time to head to the store to buy it. Wait- not so fast! There’s more to know before you toss farro into your shopping cart. You’ll want to distinguish between whole farro, semipearled and pearled farro or you could end up preparing yourself a farro breakfast bowl that’ll cause you to chip a tooth!

  • Pearled Farro: Pearled farro has been polished to remove most of the outer bran, which makes it more tender and requires a shorter cooking time of around 25 minutes. It’s the fastest and easiest farro to cook
  • Semi-Pearled Farro: Semipearled is similar to pearled, but it does retain some of the bran and may require a few extra minutes of cooking. A good compromise between health benefits and convenience
  • Whole Grain Farro: Whole grain farro has the highest nutritional content, with the bran still intact, but requires overnight soaking. If you try to cook whole farro the same way you’d cook pearled farro, your grains will be as hard as a rock! Make sure to distinguish which type you are buying before you attempt to cook it, for the best results.

As far as which type of farro to buy – it’s a personal choice. You can’t go wrong- farro is great for your body in any form. If you want to receive the maximum health benefit, however, go for the whole grain. or at least the semi-pearled variety. Just don’t forget to toss it in some water before you go to bed at night to save yourself some frustration… or a sore jaw.

farro recipe weight watchers

Is Farro Gluten Free?

Farro is actually a type of wheat. Being wheat it contains the gluten protein, (also found it barley, bulgur, & rye) so farro is not gluten free!

How Many Calories / How Much Fat Does Farro Have?

While there are big time health benefits to eating farro including high protein and fiber, it’s relatively high in calories. For example, one cup of cooked or uncooked faro has about 300 calories, which is twice much as a lower-calorie alternative like bulgur wheat

A cup of farro also has about 2 grams of fat, which is also more than double what bulgur has. So, really, if you are on a diet focused mostly on low calorie intake like Medifast, consider substituting grilled vegetables or bulgur for farro.

mediterranean farro salad recipe

Farro Salad Recipes (Mostly Vegetarian)

Whether or not you are on a diet, here are couple of popular recipes for farro salad:

Weight Watchers & Farro Recipes: Tasty Farro Salad & More

Wondering how many weight watchers points farro recipes have? There are a number of good farro recipes on the Weight Watchers site, including faro salad

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medifast cost day month

Medifast Cost: Plan Prices Per Day, Month + Food

medifast logo

How much does the Medifast diet cost? One of the most important considerations when starting any diet is the price tag.

Signing up for a meal delivery program, like Medifast, can be especially intimidating because it’s a significant monthly expense.

Or is it? Let’s look at the cost of Medifast, and then consider whether it’s expensive, or a good investment for your health. (*Related: best Medifast coupons today!)


Medifast Plan Cost:

Here’s a Medifast cost comparison chart of the cost per meal, day, week, and month of Advantage (auto-delivery) program for Medifast FLEX, and GO! plans. Prices quoted are the monthly cost with auto-delivery, updated 10/09/18.

medifast go flex
Medifast Cost:Flex (Select): Flex Complete:Go Plan:
Per Day:$13.20/day$15.35/day$14.30/day
Per Week:$99/week$115/week$107/week
Per Month:$396/mo.$460/mo.$429/mo
First Month:
(with promo)
$396 $299$460 $399$429 $329
A la Carte Food:
Priced from $19.50: View meals or get coupons

*That means the cost is about $2.50 per meal. (6-7 meals per day)

As you can see, new customers can get a great deal on the first month. However, when your initial promotion ends, you’ll be billed at the higher “per month” price estimated above.

Most customers choose to signup with the “Medifast Advantage” auto-delivery program instead of buying food a la carte or a one-time kit purchase. If you do, you’ll get 10% off and free shipping on each future monthly delivery. (reflected in prices above)

Both new and existing customers may benefit from Medifast’s monthly coupons for up to 30% off your first month, or $35 off food purchases. Here’s their featured new customer promotion, and all coupons can be found here. (updated weekly)

promotion banner


*Featured promo: Get 30% Off the GO or FLEX Plan + Free Meals!


Can This Diet Actually Save You Money?

So, initially we questioned whether a meal delivery diet like Medifast is truly “expensive,” or if it has the potential to actually save you money each month.

If you’re a busy person, travel frequently, or among the 50% of Americans who say they “hate to cook,” you probably find yourself eating a lot of restaurant food. You also may not realize just how expensive that habit is.

Here’s an infographic that compares the cost of Medifast vs a day on the road:

medifast cost comparison

So, as you can see, it’s expensive to eat out. It can also be expensive and time consuming to cook, which is why meal delivery is increasing in popularity.


Medifast: Cost of Food?

To determine the cost of food, you’ll want to decide between the following two ways of being on Medifast program:

  1. Auto-Delivery: Most people who join Medifast elect to enroll in their “Medifast Advantage” auto-delivery program, as it’s cheaper and more convenient. Food costs are included in your monthly fees, and reflected in the daily and monthly cost estimates in the chart above 
  2. A la carte orders: You can also choose to buy 14 or 30-day kits and food a la carte from their site from the “order now” tab like this:
medifast food cost
Cost of Medifast food a la carte

It can be expensive to not enroll in auto-delivery, as you don’t get the 10% discount and free shipping on your food orders. However, if you’d like to try Medifast out with a single order, it’s not a bad idea. You can also get up to a $35 discount on food orders when you use a coupon.  


Add the Cost of Groceries:

buy groceries

They say that the average family spends about $330 each month on groceries, and an average of $225 each month at restaurants. When you are on Medifast, these numbers should drop dramatically, but you should still account for some spending at the grocery store. You’ll need to provide at least one “lean and green” meal per day, depending on which plan you choose:  

  • With the “GO!” plan you only need to provide 1 “lean and green” meal
  • The “FLEX” plans requires 2 lean and green meals per day

This means that if you are on the FLEX plan you might spend more on groceries each month than the Go! plan.

In estimating a total cost of being on the Medifast diet, I would add in an extra $8-10 per day expense for grocery store food to account for the lean and green meal(s).

So, adding in groceries would bring the total “all-in” cost of Medifast and food to about $20 per day.  


Putting the Price of Medifast in Perspective

There’s no denying that a $400 monthly charge on your credit card is significant, but remember that Medifast replaces most of the food you are currently buying.

As far as meal delivery diets go, Medifast a little on the expensive side, as it’s more expensive than Nutrisystem (reviews, cost, coupons), but cheaper than Jenny Craig.

Also consider that popular DIY diets like Weight Watchers (reviews, cost, coupons) may only cost $20 per month for membership, they don’t include any food. These diets could be more expensive than meal delivery diets because of the expense of buying or preparing 3+ meals per day.

Do you currently spend money on alcohol? Medifast discourages drinking alcohol, so that could be a significant daily and monthly savings as well.

Also consider that a smoking habit costs about $6 per day, and a cup of coffee at Starbucks can cost $4 or more! That makes the $13 per day cost of Medifast look like a pretty good investment for your health.

* Another good potential investment is the $3 a day cost of owning a cat, which can be highly rewarding!


How to Lower the Cost?

There are two easy ways to save when joining Medifast:

  1. Enroll in the Medifast Advantage auto-delivery program which includes a 10% discount and free shipping on every order
  2. Use a coupon for a 30% discount on your first order, or up to $35 off a single purchase

Every week there are promotional codes and offers available towards your first month of Medifast, or a discount towards a minimum purchase of food.

Click to see today’s featured promotions, or check out all Medifast coupons here.

promotion banner


*Featured promo: Get 30% Off the GO or FLEX Plan + Free Meals

Want to learn more about Medifast? We wrote a review of the program here. If you’ve already tried it, let us know what you think of the cost by leaving a comment below:

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medifast shakes coupon

Medifast Shakes: $15 Off $150- Cheapest Price w/ This Coupon

Need Cheap Medifast Shakes? Your best bet is always going to be to get your shakes directly from Medifast, (and not from a 3rd party) but did you know that they offer monthly coupons to bring down the cost? Click below to get our latest $15 off coupon good towards shakes and meals.


We update the link above every few days with the latest code, so click to get today’s featured coupon!

Need Free Recipe Ideas for Medifast Shakes?


If you are on the Medifast diet, you might benefit from some variety with your shakes. The video above gives you some good ideas including a refreshing lemon meringue shake, (using Medifast French vanilla shake) Mayan dark chocolate shake (Medifast dark chocolate shake; a little spicy!) and a strawberry lemonade smoothie. (using a Medifast starwberry lemonade flavor infuser).

In the video they use a Medifast blender, but any old blender will work. Also, you don’t have to be as positive as the guy in the videos, or have an edgy haircut like him, either. Most of the time I’m in my kitchen I’m angry and drinking wine. (watch those calories from alcohol!)

Anyway, all these drinks are on the 5 & 1 plan, and ready in under a minute, so try them out!

How to Make a Medifast Shake Quickly


If you are new to their weight loss program, or haven’t joined yet, check out this video to see just how easy it is to make a shake at home.

Cheap Medifast Shakes on Amazon? Really?

Actually, when you see Medifast shakes on 3rd party sites like Amazon, it’s usually Medifast that is selling them. The issue is that if you aren’t getting your shakes directly from Amazon, you can’t use any coupons or promo codes for Medifast, and will probably pay more!

So, how do you get the cheapest price on Medifast shakes, then?

medifast logoThe best price for shakes comes from when you buy at least $150 worth directly at Medifast1.com. Once you pass that order minimum, you can find coupons for at least $15 off and / or free shipping on your order.

Keep in mind that these codes won’t work towards already discounted kits, or promotions for new customers. You’ll actually have to click on the “shop” tab and select boxes of shakes and meals one at a time.

*New: Medifast reviews!Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterest

nutrisystem vs medifast

Nutrisystem vs. Medifast: Which Is the Better Diet?

versus diets boxers

Nutrisystem vs. Medifast

Medifast versus Nutrisystem – So, you did your homework and it’s come down to choosing between two popular diets: Nutrisystem and Medifast. But which diet is better for you? Both Nutrisystem and Medifast are built around memberships and the delivery of prepackaged foods supplemented with fresh food from the grocery store.

Because of this, both Nutrisystem and Medifast are potentially both good choices for people who don’t like to cook.

Nutrisystem is ranked higher on the list of best diets with U.S. News & World Reports, while Medifast scores better with readers of Consumer Reports. We’ll look at both weight loss programs and help you make a decision on which weight loss program to choose.


Ratings: Nutrisystem vs. Medifast

U.S. News asked a panel of diet and heath experts to rate Nutrisystem and Medifast on a number of criteria. Here’s how they compare:

rating nutrisystemmedifast rating

As you can see, Nutrisystem scored higher with the experts than Medifast, which scored low on “long-term weight loss.” However, no one diet is best for everyone, so here’s a more detailed comparison of both diets.


About Nutrisystem:

nutrisystem about

  • Ranked #18 in Best Diets Overall – by U.S. News & World Reports
  • Consumer Reports Diet Plan Ratings Score: 56
  • Nutrisystem Review
  • Summary: Very easy to follow, they send you packaged meals and you eat every 2-3 hours during the day. Supplement their meals with food from the grocery store

Consumer Reports summarizes Nutrisystem as being, “best diet for non-cooks who want to spend the least possible amount on packaged foods.” They deliver preservative-free meals and snacks to your home one a week, and tell you when to eat them.

Nutrisystem claims that you’ll lose 13 pounds in your first month with their Turbo13 plan, and scores high as one of the easiest diets to follow according to U.S. News & World Report.

You may supplement their prepared food with your own grocery store foods, (they include a pamphlet to help with choices) and they claim that there are no limits on calories or food groups. (Although smart choices would obviously be fresh fruits and vegetables & lean proteins.)

cost nutrisystem meals

Nutrisystem focuses on three main areas: portion control, balanced nutrition, and frequent meals:

  • Portion Control: You might be eating some really healthy foods, but maybe you don’t realize how important the portion size is. Did you know the average soft drink is about 50% bigger now than it was in 1977? Same goes for snacks like chips and pretzels. In fact, portion sizes keep growing in America which is a major factor in our obesity epidemic. Nutrisystem’s pre-packaged meals and snacks are all optimal portion size
  • Balanced Nutrition: It’s not only choosing the right foods, but the right mixture of nutrients to keep you healthy and lose extra weight. Nutrisystem has a team of dietitians who designed the diet to have: high protein, low-fat, low sodium, low-glycemic carbs, and 25-25g of fiber per day. (is nutrisystem healthy?
  • Frequent Meals: Not just the traditional breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Nutrisystem encourages you to eat six smaller meals (every 2-3 hours) each day for maximum energy and less hunger. These meals are a mix of their packaged foods and fresh foods from the grocery store

How Much Does Nutrisystem Cost?

Nutrisystem costs about  $10-12 per day depending on which plan you choose, as you’ll pay more for increased variety of food. You can lock-in the best price when you use their “40% off” new customer promotion:

nutrisystem women promo bannerFeatured new customer promotion or, view all coupons

You can click above for the price, or read our post about the cost here.

*Tip: Not all coupons “lock-in” your initial monthly rate, and they may go up after about 3 months. The promotion above does not increase at any time.


About Medifast:

about medifast

  • Ranked #28 in Best Diets Overall – by U.S. News & World Reports
  • Consumer Reports Diet Plan Ratings Score: 70
  • Medifast Cost
  • Medifast Diet Reviews
  • Summary: Monthly meal delivery of prepared meals, bars, and shakes that are high in protein and low in carbs. You’ll eat 6 smaller meals a day consisting of their prepared meals, plus 1-2 “lean green” meals a day of your own.

Medifast doesn’t have the name recognition of Nutrisystem and Weight Watchers, but it’s effective and gaining popularity. It was developed by a doctor and has been well known in the medical community, having been recommended by 20,000+ doctors since 1980.

Medifast focuses on lower-calorie meal replacement with their vitamin-rich “meals” (mostly bars, powders, and shakes) delivered monthly with program enrollment. Generally you are eating half the calories (800-1000 calories per day) that you’re used to, so you should notice results quickly. Medifast scores better for fast weight loss, but gets lower score for maintaining the weight loss long-term.

2 Plan Options: “Go” or “Flex”

medifast flex go plans

When you signup for Medifast, you’ll have the choice between two plan options: Go! or FLEXThe main difference between the two is that Go! offers faster weight loss and has less “real” food, while FLEX adds more flexibility with an extra “Lean and Green” meal of your own making.

After a few days on the Medifast diet your body will achieve a mild “fat-burning” state which will cause weight loss without muscle-loss. Each one of these meals is designed with low-fat protein together with fiber to keep you from feeling hungry.

When you do reach your goal weight, Medifast transitions you into a “maintence” phase which offers more food variety.

How Much Does It Cost?

We did some research into the cost of Medifast, and posted it here. Essentially it’s about $12-15 per day, depending on which auto-delivery plan you choose. (that’s a little more than Nutrisystem)

Also note that you can save up to $150 on your first order when you use their new customer promo:

promotion banner *Get 30% Off the GO or FLEX Plan! Or, view all coupons here

The GO plan costs more than FLEX, and it includes more prepared meals, and fewer home-cooked meals.


Nutrisystem vs. Medifast: Which Is Better for Weight Loss?

Both diets aim for about 2 pounds per week (8-10 pounds / month) of weight loss.

Here’s how U.S. News ranked the two for “Best Weight Loss Diets”

  • Nutrisystem: #11 (better)
  • Medifast: #14

Even though Medifast offers “faster” weight loss, Nutrisystem outranks them on “long-term” weight loss, as Medifast customers were more likely to gain the weight back after 6 months.

Tip: Nutrisystem now offers a new Turbo13 Plan with the goal of losing 13 pounds in your first month. (up to 18 pounds for men)


Nutrisystem Versus Medifast: Which One Costs More?

diet_costBased on the current prices on their websites, both diets cost about $10 per day.

According to Consumer Reports, the first three months of Medifast costs more, averaging about $250 per month compared to Nutrisystem which averaged about $215 per month.

Keep in mind that you still have to buy some of your food from the grocery store, so your total cost of food per month will probably be higher than that number.

You can find coupons online to reduce the price of the first month here:


Diet Comparison – So, which is better, Medifast or Nutrisystem?

Like buying a car, it helps to do your homework, but ultimately the final decision depends on the individual. Here’s a few important points to consider:

  • looking for a diet that’s easy to follow? Point Nutrisystem
  • If you want to lose weight quickly, point Medifast
  • Taste? Both involve packaged food, but point Nutrisystem
  • Interested in sit-down easy meals? Point Nutrisystem
  • Do you like eating bars and shakes on the run? Point Medifast
  • Most interested in long-term weight loss, or you have a history of quitting diets? Point Nutrisystem

versus diets boxersOh, heck. What which one do the experts say is better?

Nutrisystem scores higher on the list of top diets from U.S. News and World Report, ranking at #18 to Medifast which is at #28.

Consumer Reports readers score Medifast higher with a 70 rating, while Nutrisystem gets a 56. (view full scoring of best diet plans)


In Conclusion: I Believe Nutrisystem Is the Better Diet!

Based on reading hundreds of customer and expert reviews and ratings, plus factoring in the cost, I’d say that Nutrisystem edges out Medifast.

A lot of people complained that Medifast wasn’t “real” food, and customers had more issues with keeping the weight off.

If you are looking for the better meal-delivery diet, I recommend Nutrisytem:

nutrisystem women promo bannerFeatured new customer promotion or, view all coupons

*Note that both diets are outranked significantly by Weight Watchers (get coupon), which is ranked #4 overall.

Hmmm… how about Nutrisystem vs South Beach Diet, Medifast vs South Beach Diet, or Nutrisystem vs. Weight Watchers?Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterest

Medifast Gluten Free: Coupon for 28 Free Meals w/ Signup

gluten free medifast

Medifast Gluten Free PlanDid you know that Medifast has over 40 gluten-free foods? They now make it convenient to get them all in one place with their gluten-free 4-week variety packs. Click below to view, or take advantage of this month’s coupon code for up to 56 free meals!


Medifast gluten free foods:

For thousands of years people ate diets which were relatively low in wheat gluten, but in recent years that has changed. Not everyone has made the adjustment to easily digesting wheat gluten, so it can cause digestive issues and discomfort in many people. If you are on a gluten-free diet, or just avoiding foods with gluten because it’s awful for you, consider the meals in their gluten-free variety pack. These foods are certified by the Gluten-Free Certification Organization (GFCO), meeting their strict standards

gluten free medifast foods

gluten free symbolWhich Food from Medifast is Gluten-Free?

There are actually more than forty products that have been certified as gluten-free, and each one displays a special symbol on the box. With the meals above, they conveniently put these foods together in one place.

This four week variety package includes the following products (with seven servings per box):

  • Dutch Chocolate Shake (two boxes) – Brownie Soft Bake (two boxes) – French Vanilla Shake – Strawberry & Mocha Shakes – Cinnamon & Brown Sugar Cereal – Mixed Berry Cereal Crunch – Parmesan Cheese & Chili Nacho Cheese Puffs – Chocolate Chip Soft Bake – Chocolate & Vanilla Pudding – Gluten free Chicken & Wild Rice Soup – Peanut Butter Soft Serve – Vegetarian Sloppy Joe – Chocolate Mint Soft Serve – Pancakes (regular and chocolate chip)

medifast gluten free

Why should you choose gluten-free foods?

“Gluten free” has become a bit of a negative buzz word in the dieting world, but what does it really mean? A lot of people are unable to properly digest gluten, a common protein found in wheat and barley. A disease called, “celiac disease” is just one contributing reason for this issue. More and more people are choosing to exclude gluten from their diet as more becomes known about this increasingly undesirable protein.

You can select food individually, or get a four-week variety pack. In either case, definitely use a promo code towards your order. They also have plans specifically for those with diabetesFacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterest

medifast diabetes coupons

Medifast for Diabetics: $100 Off Coupon for Diabetes Weight Loss Plan

Medifast for Diabetics – are a good fit for most people who have Type 2 Diabetes. If you are considering starting on the diet, they have extensive information on their site (PDF) regarding considerations with Type 1 and 2 diabetes. For an extra incentive, we have several new coupons including the featured one below to get you started!


Medifast has Weight Loss Plans for People With Diabetics

If you have Type 2 diabetes, the good new is that this diet is very much compatible with the needs of most diabetics. This diet is focused on maintaining healthy blood sugar levels while limiting calories, and based on small meals throughout the day, which is very much inline with what is recommended for diabetics.

In fact, a diabetes diet (aka “medical nutrition therapy) is based on eating a moderate amount of healthy food, rich in nutrients and low in fat, at specific times of the day. The Medifast emphasis on “lean and green” meals are right in line with a diabetic’s emphasis on vegetables, fruit, & whole grains. You can read more about a diabetes diet from The Mayo Clinic.

If you have Type 1 Diabetes, it is recommended that you consult with your doctor before beginning a diet of any kind.

Go or Flex: Which Plan is best for people with Diabetes?

Essentially, there are two meal plans that diabetics can choose from, differing in daily caloric intake depending on your target weight loss. The popular GO Plan, (formerly called, 5&1) or the more flexible, Flex Plan.

The Go Plan is designed for faster weight loss, and is a bit more restrictive. The Flex plan adds an extra “flex” meal each day that you provide yourself, meaning that you eat more real food.

While they both share similar qualities, they are designed to achieve different goals. In some cases, your doctor may recommend one over another, or even advise you to start with one plan, and then switch later.

*New: Medifast reviews

The foundation of all three plans is that you can choose small 5 meals (from over seventy choices) to eat throughout the day. Not sure which plan is best for you? Check out this info-graphic, and click below to download a PDF directly from their site for diabetics.

medifast diet infographic

*The 5&1 Plan is now called, “GO,” and the 4&2&1 Plan is now “FLEX”

View these Meal Plans in Medifast’s PDF for people with special diets, including diabetes.

Medifast & Diabetes

As with any diet, you are strongly encouraged to consult your health care provider before beginning. If she believes that the diet is right for you, then we encourage you to use a coupon to save up to $132 on your your first order! Going gluten free? They have meals specifically for that as well.

*Related: Nutrisystem D for Diabetics | Does Weight Watchers Have a Plan for Diabetics?Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterest

salty chinese food

Do Salty Foods Make You Gain Weight? Sodium Content & Weight Loss

does salt make you gain weight

recipe womanDoes eating salt make you gain weight? I heard it a million times from my grandmother: “lf you eat too much salt, you’ll puff up like a balloon!” Whenever we had dinner at her house, she’d make the traditional Italian meals high in carbs: spaghetti, lasagna, stuffed rigatoni, but never did she add any salt. Well before the FDA warned us about our high salt intake, she advocated a low-sodium lifestyle for a slimmer, healthier life. But as I grew up I began to doubt my grandmother’s wisdom. ls it true? Does salt really make you gain weight?

So, does salt make you gain weight?

It turns out that salt’s relationship with weight gain is a tricky one. Much of the time, it’s not just the salt in our food that’s the problem, but everything else that usually comes with it. Salt gets a lot of the blame for weight gain because it works like the opposite of a diuretic; making our bodies retain extra water. This might make it appear as if we’ve gained an extra few pounds, but really it’s just temporary. As the salt leaves your system, so will the extra water and the extra weight.

salty chinese food

Salt is only one of the problems with Chinese food

There is the link between salty foods and weight gain

salty food weight gain

processed, fried, and salted

There is, however, a link between salt consumption and weight gain. This is because many of the salty foods we eat are processed foods. Food manufacturers add a huge amount of salt to chips, microwave dinners, and fast food in order to make it more flavorful and cut down on more expensive spices and flavors. Ever get home from a Chinese restaurant craving a big glass of water? That’s probably because that sesame chicken you ate had more salt than the Dead Sea!

Restaurant foods together with the processed and packaged foods in your cabinets also have high sugar, fat, and calorie content, meaning that high salt consumption often comes as a package deal with these other unhealthy factors. Rather than the salt, it’s the other unhealthy aspects of these foods that cause weight gain.

How much salt or sodium is in popular diets?

As we mentioned, low salt diets help you to lose water weight quickly. Here’s a brief overview of how a few popular diets that we recommend handle salt. Keep in mind that the average adult should have no more than about 2300 mg / day of sodium:

  • NutriSystem(click any diet for coupons) The standard NutriSystem program contains about 1800 mg/daily sodium. (source) That’s well under the recommended daily amount
  • Medifast – A typical day of Medifast meals only totals about 1200 mg of sodium. (source) That’s about half the limit, and helps with that fast initial weight loss that we discussed earlier
  • Weight Watchers – With the Weight Watchers diet, you get most of your food from the grocery store. Check your nutrition labels, and avoid eating out too often, as restaurants often add a lot of salt for flavor. Weight Watchers Online has a lot of resources if you would like help choosing low-salt foods
  • BistroMD – Since your meals are boxed and delivered, they will have a higher salt content than other diets. While voted the best tasting prepared meals, they don’t hold the salt. Check the sodium content of meals, which are prominently displayed with the cooking instructions

Be wary of fast weight loss from low sodium diets

Many fad diets, like juice flushes, focus on low sodium consumption for quicker weight loss. While you might drop some quick weight after one of these diets, it’s not permanent — you’ve probably only lost water weight, not fat. You’ll likely gain the weight back once you start eating regular meals that contain higher levels of salt again. Most of us want real, lasting results in fat bum and weight loss, not just a couple pounds of water. Eating a low-sodium crash diet might be great for losing a few pounds the week before prom, but it’s not a sustainable weight loss method. Always choose a diet that encourages exercise and healthy lifestyle choices.

So, you’re saying it’s not really just the salt that’s the problem?

justin bieber salt

don’t blame me, bro!

Put it this way. If you invite Justin Bieber to your party, bad things will probably happen. While it might actually be the members of Justin’s posse that trash your house and break your toilet, it’s Justin who will ultimately get the bad rap.

Rest easy knowing that shaking a bit of salt (aka Justin Beiber) onto a healthy meal or a plate of vegetables will not cause you to store fat, as it’s not just the salt that’s the problem. Avoiding high-sodium packaged foods will help you avoid high sugar, fat, and calorie content, assisting in your weight loss.

Of course, if you’re prone to high blood pressure, you may want to avoid salt for medical reasons (but that’s something you should ask your doctor). So go ahead and sprinkle some salt onto grandma’s lasagna without worry, because salt doesn’t make you gain weight; but, keep in mind that a teaspoon of salt can contain an entire day’s recommended amount of sodium!

Tip: Did you know that potassium can help offset the negative effects of sodium in blood pressure?

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