eDiets delivers a real precision and ease to following a diet, and is as valuable as a weight loss tool as it is for teaching you how to keep the weight off long term. You begin by filling out a free profile, analyzing your weight loss goals, biggest challenges, and lifestyle factors that may influence how you diet. Then choose one of three diets (low calorie, Glycemic Index, or Mediterranean) and customize it as desired.
We're big fans of online diet trackers, as more than any other other way of dieting they teach you by the numbers the consequences of what and how you eat. eDiet's service's tracking abilities make following your diet a dawdle--they come up with customized menu plans, recipes, supermarket shopping lists, and tracking nutritional data for what you eat. You don't need to memorize calorie counts, as eDiet's database is full of thousands of items--they even have the menus of fast food and chain restaurants loaded, so if you splurge on a Big Mac, there's no searching for the calorie count, just enter what you ate and it does the rest.
Simply using this service will teach you the nutritional impact and consequences of your actions in a way that books and groups can't--you see the numbers add up on your screen, and suddenly it has real personal relevance. Weight loss aside, this service has great value as a teaching tool to learn good, lifelong nutrition.
You can also log your exercise activity, and there's even a virtual trainer which demonstrates the proper form of the recommended exercises. Of course there are weight and body measurement trackers as well to plot your progress.
The support and coaching are the best thing about eDiets, and you can get it online for much cheaper than with an in-person service like Weight Watchers. The support isn't only online, as you can call a toll free number to speak with a dietician or personal trainer. There are extensive forums on eDiets, very useful for asking questions and keeping you motivated. There is even a mentor program, where you can get one-on-one personal support. One of the few issues we have with the site is that there are ads on it.
If you have the willpower to stick to the eDiet plan on your own and input the foods you eat, then the service is practically guaranteed to result in successful, predictable weight loss because of its scientific tracking of the nutritional content of everything you consume.
Menu: eDiets offers three diet options, all customizable:
- eDiet low calorie plan: a standard low calorie plan (in the vein of Weight Watchers), which you can tweak to your tastes.
- Glycemic Impact Diet: A diet following the Low GI approach so popular in dieting today (in the vein of the GI Diet)
- Mediterranean Diet: A diet focusing on the southern European style of eating (in the vein of the Sonoma Diet) which has been shown to have significant health benefits
eDiets also has a meal delivery service for around $20 per day, separate to their online diet tracker--this is rather pricey compared to Nutrisystem, but the quality is better as well.
Prices: eDiets costs only $17.96 per month--when you consider the tracking capabilities, access you have to registered dieticians, personal trainers, it really is a small price to pay. You can get online tracking a bit cheaper at DietWatch, but they don't have the support level of eDiets, with professional support a call away for one-on-one support.
Unlike many online services, eDiets is a member of Better Business Bureau Online Reliability Program. Furthermore, eDiets has an excellent guarantee--if you don't reach your goals in 6 months or less, they'll give you an extra 6 months of service for free.