DIETERS were outraged back in September when Slimming World scrapped Muller yoghurts from their list of syn-free foods.
But it turns out that that was just the beginning of the changes that SW was set to make.
Today, the dieting group announced that it’s making yet more alterations to its food valuing system.
From Christmas, dieters will get an additional Healthy Extra ‘a’ choice each day on the Extra Easy plan, as well as an increase in the amount of whole cow’s milk.
Healthy Extra choices are those foods that, alongside the Free Foods, support an overall healthy balanced diet by providing calcium, fibre, other essential minerals and healthy oils.
But dieters daily fix of dairy-free drinks like rice and almond milk has been decreased to 400ml, while reduced-fat/light soft cheese and soft goats cheese will no longer be classed as Healthy Extras.
And due to new nutritional information, a handful of Free Foods that were previously labelled as ‘P’ (or protein-rich), such as baked beans, broad beans, mung beans and all varieties of peas (except split peas), will no longer be marked in this way.
However, these foods will still be Free meaning they can be enjoyed without weighing, counting or measuring.
To further boost the weight loss of those slimmers following the Extra Easy SP plan have now had their maximum number of Syns slashed from 15 a day to just ten.
A Slimming World spokesperson said: “Our Nutrition team routinely reviews our healthy eating plan in line with latest international guidance, and we’ve made a number of updates to Food Optimising for 2019.
“We’re excited about these changes and hope members will be too. As well as making our plan even more flexible and sustainable, they also ensure that we’re giving the most up-to-date health advice.”
The changes will all be outlined in the updated Food Optimising plan book which will be handed out next month.
“All existing and new Slimming World members attending weekly groups between December 24th and January 13th will receive a free limited edition New Member Pack for our Golden Anniversary year.
“This latest update, which follows changes announced in September, will be included in all Slimming World’s new member information from Christmas. Slimming World group members who’d like to learn more about the changes should speak to their Consultant and online members will be able to find an update at Slimming World Online.”
Back in September, SW updated their Food Optimising system which upgraded Muller’s fat-free yoghurt pots to one Syn – meaning that the only syn-free yoghurts left are fat-free natural yoghurt, Greek-style yoghurt, skyr and plain, unsweetened dairy-free soya yoghurt.
Other previously “free” foods that were upgraded included tinned pasta in tomato sauce.
“To help protect members’ weight losses and help you get into more filling, healthy Free Food and Speed Food habits, tinned pasta shapes in tomato sauce are no longer a Free Food,” a Slimming World rep wrote on the company’s Facebook members group.
“Even though some of these products are no longer Free Food, the Syn values are still very low, so you can choose whether to stick with old favourites or switch to Free Food.”
Naturally, people weren’t happy about the changes at all.
One member of the closed Facebook group writes: “It seems to me they are trying to influence our buying habits…pushing for quark and fat-free skyr etc is SW getting backhanders for pushing certain foods lol…I know loads of people who have lost stones eating muller lights for breakfast etc and mugshots so I ain’t changing anything it works for me!!!”
We previously spoke to leading Harley Street Nutritionist Rhiannon Lambert, who agreed that current nutrition labels needed an update because “something is not working in our approach to food”.
But she’s not keen on the value system employed by Slimming World.
“Naming certain foods as ‘syns’ just colludes with an unhealthy anxiety that prevails around food all too often,” she told The Sun.
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“The diet industry just fuels feelings of guilt and shame, it’s no wonder we have an obesity problem and a rise in eating disorders!
“In vilifying products and brands we are attempting to classify foods as either good or bad, and in doing so we are damaging our relationship with what we eat.”
But if SW does work for you, then you’ve got until Christmas Eve to make the most of that low-fat soft cheese!
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