Meal Delivery for Weight Loss

Woman-Standing-Scale-Weight-Loss

Weight loss programs are not new.

It seems that there is always a new program promising that they’ve cracked the weight-loss code and promising better, faster results. But did you know that many of the nation’s brand-name weight loss programs offer their own meal delivery services?

Here’s why:

  1. The nation’s best weight loss programs understand that many people, left to fend on their own, don’t stick to a rigorous diet program without having the meals prepared for them.
  2. Weight loss programs make a lot of money selling their food (because they sacrifice on quality).

Although meal delivery services from weight loss programs seem like the perfect solution, there are two big problems:

  1. They don’t cater to the dietary needs of people on programs other than their own, like keto, Paleo, Mediterranean or vegan diets.
  2. A lot of the meals don’t taste that great.

But it’s not all doom and gloom!

Thankfully, there are dozens of meal kit delivery options available for those trying to lose weight. And with so much variety out there these days, you can be sure that there’s one that delivers healthy meals that fit your diet.

How Meal Delivery Programs Work

Although the details vary slightly, most meal kit programs work in very similar ways. Once you subscribe, you choose meals for the coming week from an online menu. Then, your meal delivery will arrive directly to your door in one weekly shipment.

Most services deliver recipe cards and fresh ingredients for each meal, packed in individual boxes. The ingredients then have to be prepped and cooked by the subscriber, according to the recipe. These days, a few services even deliver already-prepared meals that arrive either fresh or frozen.

Depending on the program, your options and experience will vary. Some key differences include how many meal options you have to choose from, how many meals you receive each week and the number of servings per meal. Other differences include having the ability to skip and then resume deliveries, the types of diets they accommodate and, of course, pricing.

Nowadays, there are so many meal kit services that it’s impossible to highlight them all. To help you decide which service is for you, here are the best meal delivery services for weight loss, divided into three categories:

  1. Services provided by brand name weight loss programs
  2. Independent weight loss meal delivery services suitable for most diet plans
  3. The best choice for diet meal delivery plans

Brand Name Diet Program Food Delivery

There are three “big dogs” in this fight whose names are familiar to just about everyone.

Nutrisystem

What it is: It’s hard to turn on the TV without seeing their ubiquitous ads targeted for different types of dieters. With their service, you can choose your own meals or receive a “Favorites” pack. The meals center around lean protein and low-glycemic carbs.

Pros:

  • Pre-packaged and frozen foods are shipped directly to you
  • No trans-fats or high-fructose corn syrup

Cons:

  • You have to buy your own fruit, vegetables and dairy from the grocery store
  • Very expensive

 

Weight Watchers (now called WW)

What it is: This venerable diet program has chosen to partner with different independent companies over the last couple of years. Right now their delivery system is run by Blue Apron, another major food delivery service.

Pros:

  • Meal kits are based on the WW Freestyle menu, which has no “banned foods” or calorie counts, but assigns more value to healthy ones
  • Focus is on well-rounded, healthy meals with quality ingredients

Cons:

  • You choose from six weekly recipes, but they can’t be customized for other types of diets
  • All ingredients arrive pre-packaged and require a good deal of prep and cooking time
  • Moderately expensive

South Beach Diet

What it is:  South Beach diet is a doctor-created, Mediterranean-style diet that’s been popular for nearly 20 years. They ship one month of frozen food at a time (food for five days per week), including meals and snacks. Protein shakes are also an add-on option.

Pros:

  • Their high-protein, low-carb meals eliminate fruit, grains, starches and alcohol for the first month, then gradually add back carbs over the next two months

Cons:

  • Meals cannot be customized and arrive frozen
  • Moderately expensive

Independent Weight Loss Meal Delivery Services

BistroMD

What is is: Bistro MD is a doctor-created program based on in-house low-calorie recipes designed for balanced nutrition and healthy eating.

Pros:

  • Choice of 150-200 menu entrees for breakfast, lunch, dinner and optional snacks
  • Gluten-free, heart-healthy, diabetic and menopause selections available
  • Full five-day or seven-day programs offered
  • Meals contain lean proteins, complex carbs and healthy fats

Cons:

  • Meals are shipped frozen
  • Expensive

Veestro

What it is: Veestro offers a plant-based diet with all vegetarian or vegan meals.

Pros:

  • Meals are made from all organic ingredients and are free of GMOs and preservatives
  • Gluten-free, high-protein and weight-loss programs available
  • Choose from three-day, five-day or seven-day complete meal packs or à la carte meals

Cons:

  • Meals are shipped frozen
  • Expensive

HelloFresh

What it is: HelloFresh delivers meals designed for balanced nutrition. The delivery will contain recipe cards and ingredients, and the subscriber then preps and cooks the meals themselves.

Pros:

  • High-quality, farm-sourced ingredients
  • Ability to choose from their Classic Box, Veggies Box or Family Box (for four people instead of two)
  • Reasonably priced

Cons:

  • Limited selection of menu items each week
  • No ability to choose your meals with their Veggies Box

Green Chef

What it is: Green Chef offers USDA certified organic meals with ingredients from sustainably-sourced suppliers.

Pros:

  • Option of balanced, keto, Paleo, omnivore, carnivore or plant-powered meal plans
  • Ability to choose between three dinners for two people per week, or two dinners for four people
  • Reasonably priced

Cons:

  • While the delivery includes recipes and ingredients, prep and cooking is still required

Sun Basket

What it is: Sun Basket offers the largest selection of curated organic diet plans including Paleo, Lean & Clean, Mediterranean, Diabetes-Friendly, Pescatarian, Quick & Easy, vegan and vegetarian options. À la carte choices are also available.

Pros:

  • Lots of variety, and meals are also tagged dairy-free, soy-free or spicy when applicable
  • You can choose three meals per week for either two or four people

Cons:

  • Although there are 18 different meal choices each week, choices for some diets are limited
  • The delivery includes recipe booklets and ingredients, but prep and cooking are required
  • Expensive

Diet-to-Go

What it is: Diet-to-Go offers calorie-controlled menus designed specifically for dieting subscribers trying to meet weight loss goals. You can choose two or three meals per day for either five or seven days.

Pros:

  • Balanced, Diabetic, keto-Carb 30 and vegetarian plans available
  • Heart-healthy menus controlled for carbs, fat, sodium and cholesterol
  • Menus can be chosen by the customer or curated by the company
  • Delivery includes fresh, ready-to-eat meals which only require reheating
  • Reasonably priced

Cons:

  • Meal options include 1200 calories per day for women and 1600 calories per day for men, which is lower than USDA recommendations

The Best Choice for a Diet Meal Delivery Plan

Factor

What it is: Factor offers fresh, fully-prepared meals delivered directly to your door! Meals are designed by dietitians and nutritionists for balanced, healthy eating with high-quality fresh ingredients based on lean proteins, low-glycemic carbs and healthy fats. As an added bonus, they also offer a complimentary phone consultation with one of their registered dietitians!

Pros:

  • All meals feature grass-fed and pastured proteins, with no antibiotics or hormones
  • Every menu item is free of refined sugars, non-GMO, gluten-free and soy-free
  • Plan options from 4-18 meals per week 
  • They’ve made the subscription easy to manage, and the customer can skip any week when they don’t need a delivery
  • The customer can fill out a taste preferences profile to indicate the types of meals they would like to receive
  • Meals are fresh, never frozen, and simply need to be heated in the oven or microwave
  • Nutrition coaching packages for ongoing support are available 
  • Reasonably priced

Verdict:

Factor offers the healthiest options, best selection, competitive pricing and a wide variety of choices. To learn more about how Factor can help you achieve your health goals, click here.

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