All you want to know about Nutrisystem
You've watched the TV commercials and read the rave reviews about this home delivery diet phenomenon, so what's wrong with Nutrisystem that gets a small percentage of customers complaining about it?
Why do some Nutrisystem customers cancel after only their first month and demand a refund?
Why am I writing this article when I'm obviously biased in favor of this diet program because I've seen it work for a lot of people I know personally?
These and other questions will be answered in the way I see it to help you decide if you want to go ahead and get started with what has to be one of the easiest and most convenient ways to lose weight around. First of all, I'll cover the third of my three opening questions.
I have already written extensive articles reviewing every aspect of the program, even covering some of the disadvantages of the diet. However, I haven't pooled all the negatives together in one definitive post where I can explain them better and offer solutions where solutions exist. So on to the second question:
Why Do People Cancel Nutrisystem?
I'm sure every individual case has its own set of circumstances surrounding the cancellation by a customer and some have perfectly valid reasons for doing so. After reading a lot of negative reviews and hearing about problems some people were having, I have gained a decent understanding of the general or main points.
Here are some of the more common reasons why people cancelled:
- I didn't like the food
- I thought the meals were too small
- I didn't think I was losing enough weight
- I couldn't afford to pay for a further shipment of meals
- A friend or relative talked me out of it
Let's look at each reason and try to make sense of it and discover if there could have been a solution.
They Didn't Like the Food
The company are perfectly transparent about the food that goes into their meals. They explain on their website that in the Basic plans, the meals are mostly processed foods like you'd buy from supermarkets with the exception that they're nutritionally balanced and low in calories to help you lose weight healthily.
It's no great secret that processed meals are not for everyone. While most people tend to eat some packaged foods they buy in stores as part of their regular diets, there are some who prefer to only eat home cooked meals made from fresh ingredients. The kind your grandparents generally made.
The thing that often happens when many people who are accustomed to eating fresh home cooked meals start a diet made up of processed meals is they naturally find the food is not to their taste. A small number of people have written some really terrible things about the meals, when the real problem was not that the meals tasted bad, but they just weren't what they were used to eating and so didn't taste nice (to them).
A workable solution would have been to get with support and talk it over with them. They would have suggested trying the Uniquely Yours plan. That's the one that comes with fresh frozen meals of better quality than those that come with the cheaper but more popular Basic plans.
Other solutions have been found and dealt with by the company when more than just a handful of people complained about certain specific meals not being very nice. Where they found that some meals were very unpopular, they removed them from the menu.
They Found the Meals Too Small
This is one of the "complaints" I found slightly amusing. That's because I already know, as a nutritionist, that in order to lose weight a person needs to eat less food! Hence the size of the meals (on this diet) is naturally smaller than what you'd normally expect to eat.
A habitually "big eater" would be accustomed to eating much larger platefuls of food and so Nutrisystem's meals would of course seem to be very small.
For most people who are determined to lose weight, it is a given that they'll need to eat less so they are not overly concerned that there is less on the plate than they would normally find. Nutrisystem is perfect for this since it has been developing and testing a variety of meals over the years and have refined their process down to a fine art.
They Didn't Feel They Were Losing Enough Weight
When you see the TV ads with celebrities and popular successful customers who have lost what seems an incredible amount of weight, it's natural to feel that by doing what they did, it is possible to drop a big number of pounds in a month. When that doesn't happen, (as it shouldn't under normal circumstances) people get disheartened and feel the program promises more than it can deliver.
In fact, most dietitians and nutritional experts agree that a rate of one to two pounds of weight lost per week is regarded as safe, healthy and sustainable. This is the figure that the company also suggests you should aim for and to let your weight be reduced slowly and steadily over a longer period of time to ensure you remain in shape for the long term.
The reality is you should be losing weight slowly, so if you're only seeing one or two pounds reduction in a week, it's not a failing of the program, it's what you should be losing!
They Can't Afford Another Month of Food
When you first sign up with this program, it is often through a promotional advertisement like the ones I carry on this website, ads that offer a big discount on the first month of food.
The astute dieter will realize that in this life, you don't get something for nothing and a discounted first shipment is likely to be followed by a second at full retail price. They are also likely realize there is going to be some small print that binds you into accepting that second package as a trade-off for getting the first one very cheap.
This is exactly how it works. I explain about this in my main Nutrisystem review article under the chapter entitled, "Understanding Nutrisystem Auto Delivery System" but to reiterate, it means to get the initial discount, you are required to accept the auto-delivery of at least one further 28-day package of food at the full price.
After that, you can cancel without any penalty. However, if you try to avoid receiving and paying for the second month of food after getting the first at a big discount, you will be billed for the delivery charge and an extra fee for early cancellation.
On a brighter note, most people are well aware that a mere four weeks of dieting is just not going to result in a whole lot of inches lost, no matter what program you're on. It's obvious that you need to stay with the plan for a lot longer to achieve a worthwhile goal.
For the majority of customers, the auto-delivery system is perfect, considering the monthly cost of Nutrisystem. That's because they tend to stay on the program for two months, three months and longer to maximize the effectiveness of the program and to lose the most weight in the longer term.
They Were Talked Out of It
This is not such a common occurrence, although it does happen from time to time where a customer starts their diet full of eagerness and determination to get in shape and then gets talking about it to a person close to them. That person may unwittingly talk them out of it one way or another.
That happens for a number of reasons, but mostly it is when the other person thinks they know better. They'll try to push their assumed superiority on the dieter by coming up with a load of "better alternative solutions" they think they know about to try to "help" their friend or relative.
It can be surprisingly disheartening to be told by anyone close to you that you're doing it all wrong in their opinion and you should be doing it their way. Of course, opinions are the cheapest commodities on the planet, but that never stops anyone from voicing theirs when they think they know better!
You only have to look at the myriad of complaints about Nutrisystem that litter many online forums and blogs to see how even the slightest thing can be blown up into a major problem!
No Right or Wrong, Just Perspective
It can be tough enough to force yourself onto any weight loss program that involves changing something you have become accustomed to doing habitually. Changing the way you eat takes a lot of will power and determination, so the last thing anyone needs is some well-meaning person to try and turn you away from what you've decided upon doing.
The question of who is right and who is wrong shouldn't even come into it, but it often does and results in arguments that themselves result in failed diets through no fault of the person trying to do the right thing for themselves. It really comes down to perspective.
From your perspective (as the dieter), the program you have chosen to work with is the right choice for you. Anyone else's opinions that are at odds with your own must be ignored completely of you are to succeed.
You are not doing this for them. You're doing it for yourself, remember that!
The reality is that for most people who want to lose weight, there is only one "wrong" and only one "right" to have to deal with in this scenario. The only wrong thing is to do nothing, while the only right thing is to do something!
So taking into account what we know now, you're probably far more aware of what you must do and what you must avoid.
What's wrong with a diet like Nutrisystem?
The answer is: Not doing it!