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The Best Popular Diets

What's the Best Popular Diet?

For those who'd like to drop a few pounds or maybe even shed 100 or more, there's no shortage of services promising to make that dream a reality. Are there any diets that actually work?

The good news is yes, there are many weight loss programs with a solid track record of helping people redefine their relationships with food, learning what and how much to eat, and making changes that aren't just a temporary low number on the scale. But as you've probably noticed, every popular diet seems to have a different approach to shedding unwanted pounds.

Wednesday, February 1st

2023 Popular Diet Reviews

Noom Review Top Consumer Reviews Best-In-Class Blue Ribbon Award 5 Star Rating


5 Star Rating Top Consumer Reviews Best-In-Class Blue Ribbon Award

Noom is the new kid on the block among popular diets, and it quickly earned our top spot. This app doesn't just have you track your food and exercise like most diet plans; instead, it helps you understand yourself so that you can develop a healthier relationship with what you eat, how you move, and even how you manage stress. Noom is the best diet plan on the market for making long-lasting changes that result in sustained weight loss.

Weight Watchers Review 4.5 Star Rating

Weight Watchers

4.5 Star Rating

There's a reason why Weight Watchers, also known simply as WW, stays at the top of most lists for weight loss. This program has helped people lose weight for more than 5 decades. Although you won't get food conveniently delivered to your doorstep, you will get a range of tools and support to help you on your journey, with options for in-person meetings or digital-only plans. Plus, WW is the only popular diet plan we found that offers you rewards for your healthy habit "wins" over time. This is a great option for most people who are looking to lose weight and establish healthy habits for a lifetime.

Nutrisystem Review 4.5 Star Rating


4.5 Star Rating

Nutrisystem is our first choice among diets that revolve around delivered, premade food. Unlike its competitors, this program doesn't require you to cut carbs extensively, forego dairy, fruits or other major food groups. Instead, you'll achieve weight loss through carefully-portioned meals and snacks designed to help you limit your caloric intake while still eating familiar foods like hamburgers and pasta. Although the program can be spendy, Nutrisystem consistently delivers long-term weight loss for most of its subscribers.

South Beach Diet Review 4 Star Rating

South Beach Diet

4 Star Rating

South Beach is a top choice among popular diets that take a high-protein, low-carb approach to weight loss. Unlike comparable diet plans, this program offers more flexibility in the "do" and "don't" foods, while still offering the convenience of pre-made meals and snacks delivered directly to your doorstep. The program is a little spendy, but might be well worth it if you don't want the hassle of grocery shopping and extensive time in the kitchen.

Keto Review 3.5 Star Rating


3.5 Star Rating

When you first hear about the keto diet, you might think that losing weight eating high-fat foods like meat and butter sounds like a dream come true. Many people do experience a significant initial weight loss with this popular diet, along with reduced cravings for sugar and carbohydrates in general. This can be a life changer for those with diabetes or blood sugar issues.

Paleo Plan Review 3.5 Star Rating

Paleo Plan

3.5 Star Rating

The paleo diet focuses on the kind of eating people used to do before the agricultural revolution: fish and meat, fruits and vegetables, eggs, and some nuts/seeds. If you "go paleo", you'll need to forego dairy, grains, and refined sugars. Paleo Plan can help you discover new and delicious ways to stick to your paleo goals. Just be aware that, for many people, the paleo diet works for an initial quick weight loss but isn't a way of eating that they want to follow for a lifetime.

Atkins Review 3 Star Rating


3 Star Rating

Atkins has been a popular diet for decades. As one of several eating plans that focuses on low carb intake, you'll find yourself eating a lot of proteins and vegetables. The Atkins site offers numerous free tools like a mobile app for food tracking and more than 1000 recipes. But, many people who try the Atkins diet find it too restrictive, especially when trying to limit their carb intake to just 20g per day.

Meal Plan Map Review 3 Star Rating

Meal Plan Map

3 Star Rating

Meal Plan Map might not be what you would consider a true "diet". Instead, this app helps you focus on one of six nutritional goals, including healthy weight or anti-inflammatory foods, and gives you loads of tools for meal planning and prep, tracking your nutrition and exercise, and more. This program has a free 1-week trial and an affordable monthly subscription price. But, because Meal Plan Map is much less structured than most popular diets, you may feel overwhelmed and less successful in reaching your weight loss goals.

Whole 30 Review 3 Star Rating

Whole 30

3 Star Rating

Whole30 is one of the most drastic of today's popular diets: no dairy, grains, legumes, alcohol, or added sugars (including alternatives like stevia) for a whole month. If you're already a big fan of meat, seafood, eggs and vegetables, you'll have no problem sticking to this program. Or, if you need help figuring out if you have food allergies, this could be your perfect plan. But, for most people, Whole30 is challenging to complete successfully.

Medifast Review 2.5 Star Rating


2.5 Star Rating

Medifast can help you achieve quick weight loss through their convenient packaged kits. There's no calorie counting - or even much cooking - involved with this popular diet plan. Instead, you'll eat 5 prepackaged small meals and snacks every day, and just one that you prepare yourself. This plan is a good choice if you want to lose weight fast and won't miss fresh fruits and vegetables, but this won't teach you how to eat healthy for a lifetime.

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Some diet plans will tell you that you have to count every calorie, while others want you to focus on eating more whole and unprocessed foods instead of tracking what you eat. Whichever plan you select, it's important to make sure that it's a program you can realistically follow, based on your current lifestyle. For example, if you frequently travel for work, can you stick to a diet that requires you to cook with hard-to-find ingredients and a full spice cabinet on hand?

And, unless you just want to drop a dress size for an upcoming school reunion or other event, you probably want to find a plan that helps you make sustainable changes for a lifetime. It's easy to do something drastic for a week or even a month, but to avoid the yo-yo effect of fad dieting, you should be honest with yourself about what changes you are able and willing to make - and which ones just aren't the right fit for your personal needs, preferences, and goals.

As you consider the many popular diets offered today, how can you figure out which ones will be the best fit? Here are several criteria to keep in mind:

  • Cost. What will you pay for the diet plan? Is it a one-time investment, a monthly subscription, or some other pricing structure? Does it give you a good value for your money?
  • Time Required. How much effort will you need to put into following the diet? Are your meals premade and delivered, or should you expect to spend a lot of time in the kitchen?
  • Customer Feedback. What do "real people" have to say about their success (or lack of it) when following this diet plan? Most sites will show you their best-case results, but what can an average person expect in terms of weight loss and other health benefits?
  • Personalization. Just like clothes aren't truly one-size-fits-all, neither is dieting. Does the diet plan have a way to customize their recommendations for food, exercise, and more? Do you get any one-on-one input from a coach, nutritionist, or even through an online community of other people using the plan?

TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best popular diets available today. We hope this information helps you find the right plan to help you smash your weight loss goals!

The Best Popular Diets Compare Popular Diets Compare Popular Diet Reviews What are the best Popular Diets Best Popular Diet Reviews

Popular Diet FAQ

Some of the most popular diet plans have been around for a while, including WW (formerly known as Weight Watchers), Nutrisystem and Atkins. Others are newer to the industry, like Noom and keto.
The best place to start is by being completely honest with yourself. What has worked in the past, and what hasn't? Do you need to have everything spelled out for you meal-by-meal, or would you find that stifling and likely to make you quit? Whichever diet you choose, the "best" one will always be the one you can stick to!
Absolutely! Many people feel the same way and want everything to be done for them, more or less. Nothing wrong with that! You'll probably want to look for a diet like Nutrisystem, South Beach Diet, or Medifast: you will buy ready-made meals and snacks and use them as the foundation of your nutrition, at least for the first few stages of your progress.
Not at all. There are many popular diets that teach you how and what to eat, but you get to do the shopping, preparing and cooking yourself. Being on a diet doesn't mean you have to eat ready-made, heavily processed foods!
Paleo and keto are two very popular diets right now. Paleo is sometimes known as "the caveman diet" and prioritizes eating the kinds of foods that hunter-gatherers did: meat and fish, eggs, nuts and seeds, fruits and vegetables (except for corn), some fats and oils, and natural sweeteners. Keto aims to help your body burn primarily fat as its energy source and usually allows for less than 5% of your daily calories to come from carbohydrates. Both diets place strong emphasis on whole foods and healthy fats, eliminate legumes and grains, and they don't allow refined sugars. The big difference: keto allows dairy and soy but cuts out most carbs, while paleo encourages fruits and vegetables but doesn't include soy or most dairy products.
That depends on which diet you choose. Most experts say that tracking what you eat is the best way to make sure you know how much you're eating; people tend to overeat by a lot and not realize it. But, if you don't want to track your food, consider following one of the popular diets that uses ready-made meals: all the work is done for you!
Many popular diets will have a quick initial drop in weight: if you're drastically changing your eating habits, reducing your caloric intake, and exercising more, you could see a fast drop of 5-10 pounds in the first week. But, before you get too excited, understand that much of that weight loss will be water, not fat. If you want to lose weight and, more importantly, keep it off, slow and steady really does win the race. A healthy rate of weight loss after the initial "whoosh" downward is usually considered to be 1-2 pounds per week.
Not necessarily. If you choose a diet plan that doesn't include the food - in other words, you're getting a nutritional plan, coaching or other support, and maybe an app for tracking your food, water, and exercise - expect your costs to be $50-$100 per month. If you opt for a diet that includes the food, like South Beach or Nutrisystem, you'll pay around $300 for 4 weeks of food. (But remember how much you WON'T be spending at the grocery store or bringing home takeout!)
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