Diet & Fitness
Help & Support
Best Online Diet Services
Why Use an Online Diet Service?
The top performers in our review are Weight Watchers Online, the Gold Award winner; Diet.com, the Silver Award winner; and eDiets, the Bronze Award winner. Here's more on choosing an online diet service to meet your needs, along with detail on how we arrived at our ranking of the top 10 services.
Almost any diet plan can work as long as you stick to it. After all, people are losing weight on cookie diets. Sometimes it is hard to choose a diet and stick to it, though, especially if you are busy. Online diet plans for weight loss can motivate you to follow a system that fits your life.
Paying for a service and checking in with it every day can provide the incentive you need to lose weight, increase your physical fitness or both. Free tools abound in the world of dieting. There are apps, websites and advice everywhere. The act of investing your hard-earned cash can be more stimulating, though, making your diet goals more concrete and encouraging you to be accountable to yourself and your online dieting community.
Online Diet Plans: What We Tested, What We Found
The best online weight loss program is the one you can maintain over a long period, so we considered systems that do not force you to make changes so drastic that they lead to dramatic weight loss and subsequent weight gain to match it. When you need to lose weight, a good diet plan can help you achieve your goals for improved health.
We had volunteers test diet programs online and keep journals of their experiences. We also tracked whether they lost weight or not on the plans. Our volunteers provided us insight into their experiences with the plans, which we converted into a service satisfaction percentage.
The best online weight loss programs offer various diet and fitness options as well as a multitude of trackers. Even if you have specific health or weight loss goals, you may have no idea what type of program will yield the results you're looking for, especially if certain diet programs have failed you in the past.
Top Ten Reviews seeks, whenever possible, to evaluate products in hands-on tests that simulate as closely as possible the experience of the typical consumer. All our volunteers tried these diets freely and offered unbiased opinions of the plans. The companies had no input or influence over our test methodology, nor was the methodology provided to any of them in more detail than is available through reading our reviews. Results of our evaluations were not provided to the companies in advance of publication.
What Else Is Important in Selecting an Online Diet Plan?
Diet & Fitness: Meal & Exercise Plans
Managing how many calories you eat and how many you burn is the essence of a diet. While it is helpful to consider both food and fitness when selecting a diet, most people take in much more food than they can ever hope to burn off. That makes the food portion of each plan especially important. We looked for services that make it easier to eat right, with recipes, recommendations and personalized food plans.
Online weight loss works best if you put in the effort to eat right, but the best plans also have effective tools to promote exercise. Above all, we preferred the plans that helped our testers lose weight and motivated them enough to validate the price of membership. In addition to our top-rated diet services, we found that the South Beach Diet has a good balance between encouraging good eating habits and inspiring daily exercise. Its tracking and reporting system is also easy to use.
Tracking Capabilities: Resources That Keep You on Track
The best way to stick with your diet and know if it is actually working is to comprehensively track your progress. Any online weight loss plan you consider should provide tracking tools that allow you to record your weight, meals, exercise, nutrient intake and other factors. Reporting tools such as line graphs that display your weight loss are also important to help you gauge your progress and results. A mobile app is another useful feature that allows you to manage your diet and exercise no matter where you are. The Nutrisystem diet program includes a mobile app to track both food intake and exercise. Additionally, it syncs directly with FitBit, Apple Heath and other fitness-tracking devices.
Community: Feel Like Part of a Team
The support of others can play a vital role in losing weight and maintaining your health. Look for an online weight loss program that boasts a vibrant, active community you can participate in. Elements that mark a strong community include message boards, member blogs, and weight loss challenges sponsored by the service to encourage and energize members. Online weight loss support can come from the service as well as fellow dieters facing the same challenge.
Help & Support: Can You Find It Online?
Weight loss programs online should be simple to use, with websites that are intuitive and easy to navigate. You should have no trouble finding and accessing various tools and features within the service, and customer service representatives should be easy to access by phone, email and live chat if you do have any questions. The best websites also provide FAQs, knowledgebases and articles to help you use the service and diet effectively.
Online Diet Services: Our Verdict & Recommendations
Three online diet services – Weight Watchers Online, Diets.com and eDiets – stood out from the other online weight loss programs we tested.
Weight Watchers has a flexible, easy-to-follow plan and 24-hour customer support. It includes tracking tools to help you stay on target and reach your weight loss goals. Weight Watchers has a large community that offers additional support in both meal planning and exercise tips.
Diets.com has the best fitness component, offering videos that focus on every muscle group. It also has an interactive homepage that lets you add food you have eaten and exercise you have done on a daily basis, and it provides a report to show you how well you are doing in reaching your fitness goals.
eDiets doesn't have the same level of resources, but it gained points by catering to an increasing group of people with special dietary requirements. This includes substitute foods where allergies are an issue. It also has specific meal plans for gluten-free and vegetarian users.
Online diet programs provide the foundation you need to help you reach your health goals. No matter what those goals are, our comprehensive reviews and side-by-side comparison can help you find the best diet service for you.