What You Can Eat
Dieters are urged to choose healthy foods but are allowed to eat most foods as long as portion sizes are controlled. Sodium is restricted to 2,100 milligrams daily, the same as the 2005 Dietary Guidelines recommendation. Sugar and sweet treats are excluded until the maintenance phase when they are gradually added back into the plan. Caffeine is allowed and so is one alcoholic beverage three times a week.
The LA Weight Loss Centers plan is in line with national recommendations of approximately 50%-55% carbohydrates, 25%-30% protein, and 20%-25% fat. Emphasis is on moderation and portion control.
Here's a sample meal plan for a 1,500-calorie diet:
- Breakfast: 3/4 cup corn flakes, 8 ounces skim milk, and 3/4 cup blueberries
- Lunch: 4 ounces tuna in water, 1 tablespoon light mayonnaise, 1 slice rye bread, 1 1/4 cup watermelon
- Snack: Lemon LA Lite (company product), 1 small banana and 8 ounces light yogurt
- Dinner: 4 ounces shrimp, 1 cup green beans and 1 tablespoon reduced-fat margarine
- Snack: Chocolate caramel LA Lite (company product) and 1/2 cup cottage cheese
No foods are banned. The menu plans are based on your designated calorie level with specific portions of recommended foods. "Our plan is very flexible -- allowing clients the ability to go out to eat, manage social events, and prepare their own food as long as they adhere to our recommended menu plans and balanced approach," Boyer says.
Counselors encourage clients to purchase the company's brand-name products, which are designed to help people stave off hunger and stick to the plan. Vitamins, minerals, and herbs are also available from the centers to supplement the diet plan.
How It Works
LA Weight Loss Centers menu plans range from a low of 1,200 calories to a high of 2,400 calories and are divided into three phases.
Phase one is for designated weight loss. Clients are assigned a calorie level based on the information from the questionnaire and their individual needs. During this phase, they see the counselor three times a week for guidance, support, education, coaching, and monitoring weight and food choices. "Counselors advise clients on three issues: menu and food choices; movement and how to help them be more active; and mindset," explains Boyer.