You could be interested in a diet that cuts down on your time in the kitchen if you don’t want to cook or don’t have the time to prepare meals. The Optavia weight loss diet does this. Through a mix of one-on-one coaching, a few basic home-cooked meals, and low-calorie packaged goods, it promotes weight loss. However, you could be concerned about its safety or potential drawbacks. The Optavia weight loss diet, which the business refers to as “feelings,” focuses on pre-packaged items including soups, brownies, and shakes in order to promote quick weight reduction. The “5&1” Optavia plan, which is the company’s most well-liked offering, calls for five meals a day of different fuels and one meal of lean protein and veggies. Optavia can provide quick weight reduction, but because of the calorie limitations and reliance on prepared meals, it is not a sustainable approach to healthy eating.
Advantages of weight loss
Everyone can identify with the sense of achievement we get after completing a task or achieving something that seemed impossible. When a person starts their weight loss journey, the end goal seems a bit blurry but when it is actually achieved, the satisfaction is unmatched.
- You change
Someone who has always been on the skinnier side would find it difficult to comprehend the reason why you would want to feel satisfied by buying a tonne of new clothes and recognizing the “new you” in a mirror.
Gaining weight boosts one’s self-confidence. Let’s move forward! I can handle the challenge. You can decide to accept challenges you had never thought of doing because of this confidence boost.
- Better sleep
Many people discover that they may sleep better following significant weight reduction. Additionally, when you lose weight, it’s common for your physical activity and exercise to rise, which improves the quality of your sleep at night. Obese persons frequently have sleep apnea, a condition that may begin to improve with major weight loss.
- Lessening of pain
Fat cells raise the level of inflammation in our bodies, which may cause migraines. A person may experience a reduction in headache frequency and intensity after losing weight.
- Harmony of mood
Endorphins and other feel-good hormones are released during exercise, which enhances mood stability and optimism.
- Saving cash
Fast food dinners, such as pizza deliveries, are costly and unhealthy. Alternatives manufactured at home might be developed for a lot less money.
- The task is simplified
Giving the body the proper vitamins and minerals may aid to improve cognitive function, which makes tasks appear easier.
- Improved social life
People who want to reduce weight usually spend less time at home relaxing. Instead, they venture outside and take part in novel pursuits where they may socialize.
Tips for shedding pounds in a healthy way
The following advice could help you get started, even if every person’s weight-loss path is different:
- Establish goals.
Make S.M.A.R.T. goals from the outset of your weight reduction journey to aid with process planning. You should be able to track your progress, be specific about the emotions you want to feel, and maintain your objectives in accordance with your lifestyle and the allocated time.
- Identify your caloric requirements.
Once your objectives have been decided upon, calculate your daily caloric target using a weight reduction calculator. Using the calculator, you can find out how many calories you should be consuming each day based on your age, sex, height, current weight, ideal weight, and current level of exercise.
- Cut back on calories.
You must consume fewer calories than you burn in order to lose weight or create a calorie deficit. By consuming fewer calories, you may kick off this calorie deficit and encourage your body to use its fat reserves as a source of energy.
Exercise might help you lose weight faster if you incorporate it into your routine. It is preferable to follow a beginner’s guide when you first begin to include exercise in your day.
- Keep a weight loss journal.
Keeping track of your food consumption, exercise, sleep, and progress may be made easier when you use a weight loss notebook, whether it be a traditional paper and pen technique or a smartphone app. To monitor your progress toward your goal, keep an eye on your growth as well as your emotional and mental well-being.
- Get assistance.
Finding a group might help you stay motivated and accountable along the way. You’ll keep in touch with individuals who can encourage you on both good and bad days, whether you want to join a virtual weight reduction support group or solicit assistance from family and friends.
What is Optavia?
Optavia is a diet firm that sells bars, smoothies, snacks, and easy-to-make meals. Both healthy eating and living are emphasized. The company’s philosophy is that if you adopt positive behaviors, you can live a healthy life.
When Cake Boss Buddy Valastro posted about losing weight on Instagram in 2018, Optavia first came to people’s attention. In a post on his page, he asserts that he is not sponsored and states, “I’ve been asked a lot lately about how I’ve lost weight, and I followed the Optavia program. I believe that everyone is different and that you should do whatever works for you, but I’m doing this and I’m pleased with the results so far.”
What is Optavia diet?
The diet was made public in 2017. People are encouraged to eat little and frequently during the day by the diet, which is based on the pre-packaged meals the company sells. Along with these fuelings, you’ll eat one to three “lean and green” meals each day. These meals are your responsibility to make and get. Each meal should have two servings of healthy fat like olive oil, three servings of non-starchy vegetables like broccoli, one serving of lean protein like salmon, and one serving of non-starchy veggies.
In order to generate a calorie deficit and promote weight reduction, the Optavia plan makes use of meal replacements such as shakes, bars, pre-packaged snacks, and other short, calorie-controlled meals. This diet claims that it makes weight reduction more convenient while eliminating uncertainty. Lean proteins and non-starchy vegetables are the main components of the diet, while sweets and high-calorie meals are strongly discouraged.
Two bundles are available from Optavia:
- Under the 5&1 Plan, you’ll consume five refuelings and one lean, green supper. Those who want to lose weight are advised by Optavia to use this approach.
- According to the 3&3 method for best health, you should have three meals each day that is both lean and healthy. This is recommended for long-term weight loss. For those with more comprehensive needs, there are two further options. This includes adults over the age of 65, those who have medical issues like diabetes, and those who exercise for more than 45 minutes each day, according to Optavia. If you belong to one of those categories, you should discuss the best plan with your doctor.
- In order to follow the 4&2&1 Plan for Optimal Weight, you must consume a total of 1,100–1,300 calories across four meals each day: two lean and green dinners and one healthy snack.
The bulk of the vitamins, minerals, and fiber in optavia’s low-carbohydrate, low-calorie diet are obtained via fortified meal replacements. One of the diets that largely rely on prepared meals, sometimes known as “Fuelings,” for calorie limitation is the Optavia diet. The “Fuelings” of the Optavia weight loss diet, an updated version of the Medifast diet, feature the same macronutrient composition as the original Medifast products but are free of artificial colors, flavors, and sweeteners.
The Habits of Health Transformational System is a crucial part of the Optavia program in addition to the plans and goods. The program focuses on six crucial areas of habit:
- How much a person weighs
- Their food and hydration habits
- How much they move around, basically the physical activity
- Their sleep cycle
- How healthy their mind is
- What kind of surroundings do they live in
Each member also receives a LifeBook as part of the Habits of Health Transformational System, which contains 26 progressive elements needed for a lifestyle change. These elements include identifying your propensity for food addiction and tackling thought patterns that interfere with your health goals.
- Tolerant to gluten
It is very easy and convenient to follow recipes in such a way that it is free of gluten.
- Halal compliant
The diet may still be followed by just altering recipes.
- Favorable to kosher
The diet may still be followed by just altering recipes.
The government’s recommended 45% to 65% of calories from carbohydrates is greatly exceeded by low-carb diets.
Less than 30% of total calories should come from fat in the diet, which discourages the use of unhealthy fats like saturated fats and encourages a moderate intake of healthy fats like olive oil.
What items can you consume?
You will consume between two and five of the company’s pre-made meal substitutes (referred to as “fuelings”) every day, depending on the Optavia diet plan you choose. Additionally, you’ll have one to three of your low-calorie meals that are mostly composed of non-starchy veggies and lean protein (“lean and green”).
- Fuelings Optavia
The Optavia Diet’s pre-packaged fuelings make up the majority of the food you eat. Each fuelling is nutritionally comparable and portion-controlled, according to the business.
This indicates that they are interchangeable and offer the same nutrients whether consumers choose to eat a granola bar or red bean and veggie stew, for example. There are over 50 options available, including soups, bars, drinks, pretzels, and cookies.
- Healthy Protein
You must include a 5- to 7-ounce serving of cooked lean protein in your “lean and green” meals. There are a few examples that will clear the ambiguity around the lean, leaner, and leanest protein sources. These are:
- Salmon, lamb, or hog chops that are lean
- Leaner: Swordfish or chicken breast
- Cod, shrimp, and egg whites are the leanest options.
- Nuts and Bolds Vegetables
In your lean and green meal, Optavia’s 5&1 diet allows for two non-starchy veggies in addition to protein. Examples of these vegetables’ lower, moderate, and higher carbohydrate categories are as follows:
- Salad greens are lower in carbs.
- Cauliflower or summer squash is a moderate carb
- Broccoli or peppers have more carbohydrates
- Suitable Fats
Up to two servings of healthy fats can be included in a lean and green diet together with lean protein and non-starchy veggies.
- Almond oil
- Walnut oil
- Low-Calorie Seasonings
The diet allows you to include specific condiments in your cooked meals.
- Fresh fruit, whole grains, and low-fat dairy
The Optavia Diet permits you to increase portions of fruit, dairy, and grains once you reach your goal weight. Examples include:
- Cheese cottage
- Grecian yogurt
- berries, apples, bananas, etc.
- High-fiber cereals, whole grain bread, whole wheat English muffins, etc.
What You Should Not Eat
Although theoretically, no food is off-limits on the Optavia diet, many things (including sweets) are severely discouraged.
Optavia advises against satisfying sweet cravings with food. You may, however, include lower-calorie sweet indulgences to your diet after the first weight reduction period, such as fresh fruit or flavored yogurt. But generally speaking, stay away from
- Icy dessert
- High-Calorie Supplements
- Sour barbecue sauce
- Alcoholic beverages and butter-sweetened beverages
- Flavored coffee drinks
Optavia diet: how does it function?
A branded diet called Optavia necessitates the purchase of pre-packaged foods called Fuelings, which can include cereals, soups, pasta, crunchy snacks, smoothies, and bars. According to the brand, fuelings are created for weight reduction by doctors, nutritionists, and scientists. There are more than 50 alternatives, all of which, according to the manufacturer, are nutrient-dense and portion-controlled, with BC30TM probiotic cultures to promote digestive health, high-quality, complete protein, and 24 vitamins and minerals. According to Optavia, fuelings are created without artificial colors, flavors, or sweeteners. Therefore, resultant of this the number of calories per day would be around 8-10k.
Five of the six meals on the famous Optimal Weight 5 & 1 Plan—which calls for small meals to be consumed every two to three hours—are Optavia Fuelings. You will be taught how to make your own “Lean & Green” meal for the sixth meal, which should contain 5 to 7 ounces of lean protein, three servings of non-starchy veggies, and up to two servings of healthy fats in order to maintain blood sugar levels.
While on the diet, Optavia advises staying away from alcohol, sweetened beverages, solid shortening, and high-calorie sweets. The Optavia diet also includes a few foods that are restricted initially but eventually reintroduced, according to the business, including starchy vegetables (including maize, peas, and potatoes), low-fat dairy products, and whole grain goods.
Optavia also provides a strong support component made up of coaches. According to the firm, the majority of coaches (90%) began as dieting customers and use their change as inspiration to guide others through the process. The day before you start your program as well as the first four days of the program, your coach will check in with you. Then, using your favorite methods of contact, such as phone or email, you may set up frequent check-ins with your coach.
Optavia also patented their “Habits of Health Transformational System,” a method that teaches customers how to develop healthy habits by making tiny, everyday adjustments, frequently beginning with concentrating on a healthy weight and eating well. Along with eating, it discusses water, exercise, sleep, mindfulness, and the environment with the aim of forming healthy habits throughout one’s life.
How much does the Optavia diet cost?
On the 5&1 Plan, a month’s worth of Optavia Fuelings costs just over $400; on the 3&3 Plan, it costs just over $300. A 30 days worth of Optavia-approved “fuelings” (shakes, soups, and snacks) can replace three to five of your normal meals, depending on the chosen plan. Participants must make at least one wholesome meal for themselves each day. The Optavia diet is not cheap, but when you include in all the Starbucks and GrubHub expenses you’ll undoubtedly incur over the course of a month, it is also not too pricey.
Optavia provides three different programs, each of which focuses on a different aspect of weight loss. Each plan includes access to a health coach and a number of tools to assist with weight reduction techniques and general lifestyle wellness counseling, all of which are aimed at forming good eating habits.
How is the Optavia diet made?
Medifast created and promoted the diet. The business is well-known for its pre-packaged food-based weight loss programs including Optavia, Medifast, and Take Shape for Life. The multilevel marketing business previously reached a settlement on allegations that its products caused weight loss that was unfounded. This case was filed before to Optavia’s debut and was unrelated to Optavia.
Advantages of the Optavia diet
It is useful for individuals who need to lose a lot of weight to follow an Optavia diet since it causes rapid weight loss.
Buying packaged, pre-portioned foods can be easy and convenient; tracking calories or carbs is not strictly necessary. Additionally, there is a simple recipe for making your meals at home. By calculating portions of specific foods rather than calories, meal tracking is made easier.
- Reduced risks of being overweight and obese
Weighing in at risk of becoming overweight, obese, or both Among these include conditions like osteoarthritis, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and various malignancies. These dangers can be reduced with even a 5% weight decrease.
- Better blood sugar and cholesterol levels
While some medical professionals advise losing 1 to 2 pounds of weight every week, there are occasions when a quicker rate is desired. This can be backed up by evidence. Studies that have been conducted claimed that rapid weight loss is interlinked with an increase in lipid and glycemic profiles. Therefore, for those whose health is at risk due to high cholesterol or low blood sugar, decreasing weight more quickly could be preferable. However, this study also discovered that slower rates of loss resulted in better alterations in body composition.
- Support for coaching
Optavia also provides coaching program support, which some users may find useful. Your chances of success may rise if you receive coaching to help you stay on course.
The Optavia diet’s drawbacks
The Optavia plan may have certain further drawbacks that might be harmful to your health.
- Deficiency in nutrients
If calories are too low for an extended period of time, this diet may result in nutritional deficiencies. Optavia diet programs also place restrictions on specific food categories, such as whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, all of which include vital vitamins and minerals.
- It might affect an athlete’s performance negatively
According to an analysis of 10 papers, although many athletes (especially boxers) desire to lose body fat, doing so too quickly might compromise their performance and endanger their health. A very low-calorie diet is unlikely to help an athlete maintain their demanding training schedule. Some medical professionals advise that athletes should try to shed weight during the off-season when training demands are lower.
- Sales pressure
Coaching “assistance” might have its disadvantages. Because of its multi-level structure, the concept has been compared to a pyramid scheme by detractors. After completing the program, users are pushed to market Optavia’s goods and hire new sales agents. They are also encouraged to become trainers. This can put off prospective consumers.
The plans may be pricey; you’ll pay roughly $17 for 5 fuelings, not counting tax or delivery (or the groceries you buy for lean and green meals).
What are the Optavia diet’s potential short- and long-term effects?
The calorie restriction may lead you to lose weight swiftly in the near term. However, for the same reason, users may also face the negative effects of malnutrition, such as hair loss, degradation of skin look, constipation, dehydration, migraines, and tiredness. Immune deficiencies run the danger of making diseases more common.
What quantity of liquids are allowed?
The Optavia diet advises 64 ounces of water per day, although it’s advisable to consult your doctor about what counts as water as you can also acquire water from dietary sources. Additionally, you can drink calorie-free and carb-free liquids like black coffee or tea. The Optavia diet does not encourage drinking alcohol.
The Optavia Diet: will it be suitable and right for you?
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) advises following health and dietary guidelines, although the Optavia Diet departs from these recommendations. For instance, Optavia’s 5&1 plan has a daily calorie cap of 800 to 1,000, which is drastically less than the USDA’s recommended of 2,000 calories for adults.
A “very low-calorie diet” is one with less than 800 calories per day, and it should be under medical supervision. Extreme calorie restriction might result in headaches, menstruation abnormalities, lethargy, and cognitive fog. The 5&1 option shouldn’t be employed over the long run as a result. The 3&3 and 4&2&1 regimens can be used for extended periods of time and generally provide between 1,100 and 2,500 calories daily.
The programs from Optavia also include 80 to 100 grams of carbs each day or around 40% of the diet’s total caloric intake. The USDA suggests a diet with 45% to 65% carbohydrates. Grain and dairy products, which are not included in Optavia’s 5&1 diet, are also highlighted by the USDA.
Does Optavia work to help you lose weight?
The Optavia weight loss diet is meant to help people reduce weight and fat by lowering calories and carbohydrates through portion-controlled meals and snacks. The 5&1 diet restricts daily caloric intake to 800-1,000 calories, distributed across 6 meals with set serving sizes. While the evidence is conflicting, several studies have found that either complete or partial meal replacement plans result in higher weight reduction than conventional calorie-restricted diets. According to studies, eating fewer calories overall and following low-carb diets, at least temporarily, can both help you lose weight and burn fat.
Following 65 overweight or obese people on Optavia’s 5&1 Plan for 16 weeks, the study found that by the end of the experiment, those following the plan had significantly lower weights, fat percentages, and waist circumferences than the control group. In particular, those who took part in the 5&1 Plan lost 5.7% of their body weight on average, and 28.1% of them lost more than 10%. Research has shown a correlation between weight reduction of 5–10% and a decreased risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes, so there may be further benefits.
It’s important to keep in mind that participants on the Optavia diet only ingested 800-1,000 calories per day, whereas 1,500 calories or more were authorized for those in the control group. The latter is a more workable plan for long-term weight loss. Furthermore, one-on-one instruction could be useful. The same study found that those who participated in at least 75% of the coaching sessions and were on the 5&1 diet lost more weight than twice as much as those who did not. But bear in mind that Medifast, the company that once owned Optavia, funded this research.
However, other research suggests that ongoing expert coaching may help to promote weight loss and diet adherence. It’s doubtful that the majority of Optavia Coaches are specialists because neither certification nor dietary training is needed of them. The Optavia diet’s long-term effects have not yet been investigated in any trials. Overall, additional investigation is required to determine the long-term efficacy of the Optavia diet.