When Bevie was diagnosed with type II Diabetes she began to get a lot more serious about exercise and her weight. Somewhere along that journey she not only started going to Weight Watchers meetings, but she also got hired by Weight Watchers to help run their meetings in Anderson. No, she still isn’t getting up and speaking in public, but helping people sign up and keeping the paperwork filled out and up to date is firmly in her wheelhouse.
I don’t pay too much attention to the program – I simply cut down to drink only half of a can of soda and have only two double stuff Oreos instead of four when my weight starts to creep up again. That seems to work for maintaining a reasonable weight. Bevie apparently needs to be a lot more organized. She uses her smartphone to count points and record everything she eats and weighs herself quite often and I do my best to never mention weight at all except to congratulate her when she seems happy with an outcome.
The Weight Watcher system appears to be a more detailed approach to half of the “eat less and move more” dieting system that strikes me as the system most likely to succeed. Each serving of each type of food is given a point value in a huge database and people trying to control their weight can eat whatever they want to as long as they don’t exceed their point value for the day. Foods that Bevie still turns her nose up at are zero points (mostly good vegetables and fruits). I try to eat my deserts only at the store where she doesn’t have to see them since just a soda and my four cookies add up to 22 points. To put that in perspective, Bevie is currently trying to stay within 30 points a day.
Even worse? A movie theater popcorn with butter (yum!) is 40 points. Even sharing that with a friend doesn’t help very much.
Since she works for Weight Watchers, Bevie has had to go to special regional employee meetings where they explain any upcoming changes in the points system. The presenters always stress that the material they are being shown is preliminary and should be kept a secret until the official launch date for the changes. Bevie came home from the most recent info dump very excited, but couldn’t tell me much about the changes. She indicated that changes were coming that would let her eat more food, and anybody on any diet always welcomes that kind of change. Because everything was a secret, she couldn’t tell me much more than that since the rollout for the new system was scheduled for December 03.
About two weeks before the rollout she called Wendy (our oldest daughter) to make plans to go out and get breakfast somewhere. Bevie was a little surprised by Wendy’s reaction: Wendy welcomed breakfast because Weight Watchers was making eggs zero points.
Huh? How would Wendy know that?
It turns out that the new system was released in November in the UK. While the system may have different names in the two countries, it is likely the program is essentially the same (if not identical). Videos starting showing up on YouTube by October 31 that detailed some of the changes. The number of points allowed each day went down, but a larger number of items were changed to zero points. The exciting changes in our family seem to revolve around lean proteins now costing zero points, including eggs, chicken (and probably turkey), and beans.
Bevie still can’t discuss the program, but the Internet has no problem talking about it. Even the official release video from the UK is floating around on the web. Wendy had simply read up on all the changes about the same time Bevie learned about them and was told to keep them secret.
Weight Watchers has provided an educational moment for corporations everywhere: there are no secrets once you tell any portion of the public anything. While articles and videos may be listed as “rumors” to avoid potential legal problems, any information put out there is probably available online in a matter of minutes.
The Timex Social Club only had one big hit record, but their release of Rumors was successful enough to get them on Soul Train.