11/12/19 Update: Effective today the myWW Program offers an option very much like Simply Filling with its Purple Plan. You can check out the Purple Plan Zero Points Food List here.
I love the Weight Watchers Simply Filling Technique (No-count option). I think it's one of the reasons I've finally been able to maintain my weight loss so easily (finally, after all these
If you want to lose weight and get healthy, I don't think there's a better approach around right now than Weight Watchers "Simply Filling" plan.
I was able to use what I learned from the Simply Filling approach as a launching pad to becoming what I consider a much more 'normal eater.'
Are you familiar with the Weight Watchers Simply Filling Technique?
Basically, Weight Watchers created a no-count technique for people who don't like to calculate points and/or track. To follow it, eat from the list of Simply Filling Foods in your Pocket Guide, until you FEEL SATISFIED, NOT STUFFED.
You don't have to measure your food. You don't have to count or track SmartPoints. You just have to stick with eating Simply Filling Foods.
Talk about simple. It doesn't get much simpler than The Weight Watchers Simply Filling Technique.
Watch this video to find out what a typical day on Simply Filling looks like:
You can follow 'Simply Filling' for a day, a few days, a week or all the time.
Whatever works best for you!
What are Weight Watchers Simply Filling Foods?
Weight Watchers Simply Filling Foods List Include:
- All fresh, frozen, or canned without added sugar
- Fruit canned in its own juice (drained)
- Mixed fruits with no added sugar
- Most fresh, frozen or canned without added sugar or oil
- Potatoes — white, red, sweet
- Salsa: fat-free and without added sugar, including salsa with fruit
- Beef, chicken, lamb, pork, turkey, veal: lean, trimmed, all skin removed (see food list for specific cuts and grinds)
- Luncheon and deli meats, reduced sodium, with 0.5 gram or less of fat per 2-ounce serving
- Most fish and shellfish: fresh, frozen, and canned
- Eggs: Whole, whites, and egg substitutes
- Beans: dried, frozen and canned, including edamame, fat-free refried, garbanzo (chickpeas), kidney and white
- Dried peas including black-eyed peas and split peas
- Meat substitutes, including tofu and vegetarian burgers
- Game meats
- Organ meats from beef, lamb, pork, veal, and poultry
- Brown and wild rice
- Hot cereals, cooked — without added sugar, dried fruits, or nuts
- Pasta, whole-wheat or other whole-grain varieties
- Popcorn, air-popped, or 94% fat-free microwave (affiliate link)-popped
- Whole-grain, ready-to-eat cereals without added sugar, dried fruits or nuts, and with 4g of fiber or more per serving
- Whole-grains such as: barley, buckwheat, bulgur, cornmeal (polenta) whole-wheat couscous, quinoa
Watch One Weight Watcher's Simply Filling Grocery Haul & Meal Ideas:
Non-Fat Dairy and Dairy Substitutes
- Fat-free cheeses, including fat-free cottage cheese
- Fat-free milk and beverages made with fat-free milk, such as cappuccino or latte, as long as it’s sugar-free
- Yogurt, fat-free, plain or flavored with artificial sweetener
- Fat-free sour cream
- Soy products, unflavored and plain, such as:
- Calcium-fortified soy milk
- Unflavored soy milk
- Fat-free soy cheese
- Plain soy yogurt
- Light breads, english muffins and hotdog/hamburger rolls
- Reduced-fat corn tortillas
- Soups (broth, onion, and some broth- and tomato-based vegetable soups)
- Sugar-free gelatin
Is There Anything Else To Weight Watchers Simply Filling Program?
1. You also can enjoy the following without tracking:
- 2 teaspoons of healthy oils daily (canola, olive, safflower, sunflower, flaxseed)
- Unsweetened coffee and tea
- Diet soda
- Club soda
- Baking powder
- Baking soda
- Cocktail sauce
- Fat-free salad dressings
- Fat-free margarine
- Fat-free mayonnaise
- Hot sauce
- Lemon juice
- Lime juice
- Nonstick cooking spray
- Salsa (fat-free)
- Soy sauce
- Steak sauce
- Sugar substituts
- Taco sauce
- Teriyaki sauce
- Worcestershire sauce
2. You still get your weekly SmartPoints. You can use them for treats and things not on the Simply Filling Foods List or the above beverages and condiments list. I use these points for foods I'm not willing to give up like peanut butter, nuts, wine and reduced fat cheese since I'm not willing to eat the fat free stuff.
Why I Love the Weight Watchers Simply Filling Technique
1. I love not having to calculate and count everything.
Can I tell you how much I LOVE not having to count and calculate points! I wonder sometimes, how much we really do it even we are supposed to be. I know I can get really lazy about it. And sometimes it's impossible, like when you are eating somewhere other than at home, which for many of us these days, is a lot of the time.
I also think the whole "points" mentality can encourage an unhealthy relationship with food if you're not really careful. Sometimes, in the frenzy of counting points, I forget that I'm dealing with FOOD, not points. And I find myself eating food even when I'm not hungry because I have points available. That's CRAZY!
2. It Makes Eating Out Easier.
You can actually go out to a restaurant or at your friends and family's homes without having to fret about so much.
It seems like there's always something available to order/eat that will work wit the plan. Some of my personal favorites include big salads with grilled chicken or shrimp, grilled chicken sandwiches, grilled fish tacos, broth-based soups, turkey burgers, sushi/sashimi, whole wheat pasta with vegetables and chicken, fajitas with corn tortillas, and burrito bowls with brown rice.
The options are limitless, once you get the hang of it.
When I'm invited to someone's home, I'll often bring something along that works with Simply Filling to share, like a big salad or roasted/grilled vegetable medley.
3. I'm Never Hungry and I Feel Good.
Because I'm eating reasonable portions of real food that's good for me. And I never feel deprived because I'm eating from all the food groups, including carbs.
Simply Filling Foods are the good-for-you foods. Mostly clean whole foods. Fruits. Vegetables. Whole Grains. Lean Proteins. The foods your body really wants. When you eat them, your body is satisfied. You have more energy. You feel less hungry.
If I had tried to eat when I was hungry and stop when I was full with my old way of eating I would have failed. I ate a lot of very refined carbohydrates - breads, bagels, pasta, pancakes - which would have constantly been creating 'fake physical hunger.'
What is 'fake physical hunger?'
It's an intense feeling of I Must Eat Now with very powerful cravings that happens when too much insulin fills your bloodstream to deal with all the sugar you fed it.
For me, this happens regularly about an hour after eating a sugar or simple carb heavy meal.
When I eat a big bagel or sugary cereal for breakfast. Or a big plate of pasta. A short time later, get shaky and fuzzy-headed with a pit in my stomach that seems like it needs to be filled right this minute.
After being on Simply Filling, I was able to make the connection and realize what was happening. Realizing how awful these foods make me feel when I eat them in large doses, makes them a whole lot less attractive to my taste buds. I sometimes forget, like when I ate too much cake a few weeks ago. But that's okay. I'm human.
The Skinny on Weight Loss Sisters Talk About WW Simply Filling:
4. It's a Lifestyle I can Live With for the Long Term
After years of yo-yo diets and following the fads, this is major.
I feel like Simply Filling has been stepping stone to becoming a 'normal eater.' I've used it to help me reconnect with my body's natural hunger and satisfied signals.
It didn't happen overnight. But with time, practice and patience, I have trained myself to stop eating when I am satisfied, not stuffed.
This is a huge accomplishment for a girl who used to have to undo the button(s) on her pants or change into sweatpants at the end of most meals!
The Simply Filling Technique is worth trying for just about any person in any lifestyle. You've gotta be willing to give mostly clean eating a try, of course.
But why not give it a try. What do you have to lose?
Update: Now I'm able to apply what I learned with Simply Filling to ALL FOODS, not just Simply Filling Foods. By combining what I learned from The Simply Filling Technique and Mindless Eating, I have been able to break free of the vicious extreme restraint/over-indulgence cycle and am successfully maintaining my weight!
Who the Simply Filling System May Not Work For
The Simply Filling technique might not be for you if:
- You are prone to overeating and tend to eat to way past full. If you eat too much of any food, even healthy stuff you can take in too many calories making it hard to create the deficit needed to lose weight.
- You eat a lot more carbs than protein. I've found I need to be careful not to overdo it with the carbs, even on Simply Filling. Loading up on too much bread, pasta, cereal and rice, even if it's wholegrain, makes it hard for me to lose/maintain my weight.
- You need more structure to insure you are eating in a healthy balanced way. You may want to check out the Old Weight Watchers Food Exchange Program if you do. It's how I originally lost weight and became a Lifetime Member way back in the early 1990s, before Points.
Are You Ready To Firmly Plant Yourself
On The Path To Lasting Weight Loss Success?
If that sounds like you, be sure to check out my Ultimate Weight Watchers Guide for lots of helpful Weight Watchers Resources!
Click Here For My Favorite Simply Filling Technique Recipes
More about Weight Watcher Simply Filling:
- Weight Watchers Simply Filling: Will It Work for You (Snack-Girl)
- 10 Things I Love About Weight Watchers Simply Filling (Something Swanky)
- My Week On Simply Filling (Brooke Not on a Diet)
If you liked reading about the Weight Watchers Simply Filling Technique, you might also enjoy:
- What was the Weight Watcher's Program Like in the 1960s
- Why I think the Old Weight Watchers Food Exchange Plan Was Better than Points
- The Weight Watchers 360 Program
- Weight Watchers Introduces new SmartPoints Beyond The Scale Program 2016
Martha is the founder and main content writer for Simple-Nourished-Living.
A longtime lifetime WW at goal, she is committed to balancing her love of food and desire to stay slim while savoring life and helping others do the same.
She is the author of the Smart Start 28-Day Weight Loss Challenge.
A huge fan of the slow cooker and confessed cookbook addict, when she's not experimenting in the kitchen, you're likely to find Martha on her yoga mat.
Source: Weight Watchers
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Martha, in reading your Simply Filling post I believe we share the same carb problem. and I think you have licked it! Would you please share what percentage s you assign to carbs, fat, and protein?
Hi Lourdes, I don't assign percentages to carbs, fat protein. It's too hard for me to track. I think in terms of numbers of servings of carbs/starches which is how I learned to think back when I first joined Weight Watchers in the early 1990s, when they used an exchange based program. Back then they suggested you stick with 2-3 servings of carbs/starch a day for weight loss. A serving is 1 slice of bread (about 1 ounce), 1/2 cup of oatmeal, about 3/4 cup of cold low sugar whole grain cereal, 1/2 cup rice, 1/2 cup pasta. Hope this helps. ~Martha
Hi, I am so glad I found this. I have all of the WW points items from 2005ish but sunce I was diagnosed with MS, had a surprise blessing baby and while I am still mobile my lifestyle has become more sitting less walking.
Yes some is due to my new MS meds but regardless I need to get back to the gym with AC as heat & MS do not mix.
Just as I was ready school shut down and now I am trying to adjust to this new normal.
Thank you again & I hope you as well as your "peeps" are doing well
I have just discovered this method, thank you. I am wondering which points calculator to use for the food that required counting. I've been using an old Winning Points calculator from around 2004. Hope that's ok, just wanted your thoughts. Thanks!
Hi Marty WW has done away with this option in their latest Program. Now the myWW Purple Plan most closely resembles Simply Filling, with a few modifications. I think any points calculator that works for you will be fine. ~Martha