Noom Vs. WW

Updated on August 10, 2019
Carolyn M Fields profile image

I have followed the WW/Weight Watchers program for years, from "exchanges" up to the most recent Wellness Wins program.

Source

What Is New About Noom?

I was curious, so I decided to check out Noom. After a little preliminary reading, I signed up for their “free” trial period. They start by asking numerous questions, some of which were extremely personal (e.g., my weight, my health history, etc.), after which I was asked how much I thought their “free” trial was worth? They explained, very nicely, that it costs them around $18.00 to offer this “free” trial, so in view of their financial investment—what would be a “fair” dollar amount for me to kick in? I’m thinking zero since it was advertised as free, but that was not an option. The lowest dollar amount was $1.00, so rather than giving up and backing out, I forged ahead and entered that amount. I understand that it’s all about getting your credit card information into their system, so I played along.

After several more questions, I was finally ready to start my “free” trial. I followed the link that they sent to my cell phone, only to find out that their app is not compatible with my rather ancient android device (Samsung Galaxy S4). Okay, no problem, my fault for not keeping up with the latest technology. Perhaps I could just use the web-based version of the program? No dice. As I do a little more research, I find out that it’s a phone app or nothing at all.

It's Time to Cancel

It becomes immediately apparent to me that I need to cancel my useless subscription, so I followed the links online to find out how that is done. Here is the message:

You must have the Noom app installed [on your phone] to cancel your trial or active Noom subscription.

Apparently, the only way to cancel is from within the app, but I can’t install it on my old phone. So now I’m in a perfect Catch 22. I can’t install it, and I can’t cancel unless it’s installed. UGH! I look through all the FAQ’s, only to realize that there’s no immediate solution for me. Next I dash off a message to Noom Support, who promises to be in touch within 24 business hours (they are available Monday through Friday, 9-5 EST). Thank goodness I didn’t wait until my 14-day trial was almost up, at which point I would have been charged as follows:

If you decide Noom is right for you, on August 7, 2019 you will be charged one payment of $155.71 (sales tax of $6.71 included) for your 6-month Noom membership ($25.95/month).

Luckily, I was contacted by Noom support within an hour, telling me that I was cancelled:

Thanks so much for reaching out to our Support Team. I can confirm that your Noom trial has been cancelled - you're all set!

Of course they didn’t refund my $1.00 that I paid for the “free” trial, but I’m getting off comparatively easy. I’ll still ask for my dollar back on principle, but at this point, I’m still curious about the program. So I start doing some more reading. There’s plenty out there, but my main interest was how Noom stacks up against WW. Without any further ado, here is my analysis.

Tagline

Noom
WW (Weight Watchers Reimagined)
You aren't still on MySpace, so why are you doing Weight Watchers®?
We inspire healthy habits for real life.

Overall Program Description

Noom
WW (Weight Watchers Reimagined)
Noom is a wellness program that is designed to help you live a healthier life by guiding you to create better habits.
WW helps people lose weight and/or get healthier with the latest nutritional and behavior change science. It’s a program, not a diet.
The basic process is to track your food daily, with a support system to keep you motivated.
The basic process is to track your food daily, with a support system to keep you motivated.

Program Development

Noom
WW (Weight Watchers Reimagined)
The diet plan was developed about ten years ago by a team of nutritionists and registered dietitians. They oversee the food database to make sure users are getting the most accurate information.
WW has over 50 years of experience in the science of behavior change. They use it to give people the proven tools they need to achieve their wellness and weight-loss goals. They are constantly updating their program.

Lifestyle and Behavior Modification

Noom
WW (Weight Watchers Reimagined)
Noom focuses on the mental aspects of weight loss, as well as the physical. It’s about behavior modification, and changing habits.
WW uses various approaches to promote and reinforce behavior modification, such as their Wins program.
They use the concept of a “behavior chain” to help you understand how to change behaviors to align with weight loss and health goals.
They have a partnership with Headspace to create custom mindfulness content that members can tap into from the WW app—anytime, anywhere.

The Food

Noom
WW (Weight Watchers Reimagined)
No foods are off limits. You count calories, choosing from Noom’s very large food database with over 3.7 million options. You can even select the portion sizes that make sense for the actual food item in question. There is also a traffic light system of “red, yellow, and green” foods to guide your food choices.
You can eat anything you want, while remembering the importance of portion control. If it’s not already in the database, you can create your own food by entering calories, fat, etc., and WW will calculate the SmartPoints for you. The points system is weighted to guide you towards healthier choices.
Source

Activity

Noom
WW (Weight Watchers Reimagined)
You don’t have to exercise with Noom, but they do recommend it. Also, by tracking exercise, the Noom program will increase the number of calories in your daily budget.
You don’t have to exercise to lose weight on WW, but the program stresses the importance of exercise. Also, if you exercise you can earn “FitPoints,” which count towards the Wins program.

Accessing the Program

Noom
WW (Weight Watchers Reimagined)
Everything on Noom is done from your smartphone. There are absolutely no alternatives to access the program. Support is digital through a personal coach. After two weeks on the program you are put into a digital support group with other members.
WW delivers its program in three combined ways: online via its mobile app and website, coaching online or by phone, and/or through in-person workshops around the world. You choose the level of support to fit your lifestyle.

Keys to Success

Noom
WW (Weight Watchers Reimagined)
Here are Noom's four keys to success:
WW has been around so long that there are literally dozens of "keys to success." I'll just give you my personal favorites.
1. Change your brain to change your body.
1. If you bite it, write it.
2. Identify your triggers.
2. Before you eat, determine if you're really hungry, or just sad, thirsty, bored, etc.
3. Remember why you want to lose weight.
3. There is no such thing as failure - only feedback.
4. Make sure you're ready for the journey.
4. Nothing tastes as good as healthy feels.

Cost

Noom
WW (Weight Watchers Reimagined)
The cost of a six-month plan is around $150 (that’s just under $6 a week). From my experience that amount doesn’t include the tax you will be charged, nor does it include “extra” features (e.g., a customized workout plan, or a weight loss DNA test). You can also sign up for a one-, two-, or four-month option, but the price is higher per week.
The cost varies depending on the level of support you select. For digital only the cost is just over $3 a week. The highest priced plan is for personalized coaching (with a human being) for just under $13 a week. That cost doesn’t include any food or other WW products. You are charged one month at a time, and can cancel at any time.

Special Needs

Noom
WW (Weight Watchers Reimagined)
Noom has specialized approaches for various conditions, such as hypertension and diabetes. They have a program for new Moms.
WW has a variation of their program specifically for nursing moms. It is an easy program to follow for vegetarians.

Expected Results

Noom
WW (Weight Watchers Reimagined)
You should lose 1 to 2 pounds per week.
You should lose 1 to 2 pounds per week.

Summary

This comparison doesn’t cover every single detail of the two programs. It’s intended to give the reader a general impression of which one might be the better “fit” if you’re considering starting a weight loss or wellness program.

Neither program offers a “quick fix” to weight loss. They both emphasize behavior change over the long run. My overall impression is that Noom is laser-focused on the smartphone using generation, whereas WW is open to anyone – with or without technology. Plus, WW offers a rewards program, and a product line of foods, books, and cooking aids.

If you’re worried that you might be “old-fashioned” by sticking with WW – don’t be. They have substantially updated their program with technology-friendly features. Plus, they have Oprah. Who can argue with that?

What diet/wellness program have you tried?

See results

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.

© 2019 Carolyn Fields

Comments

Submit a Comment
  • Carolyn M Fields profile imageAUTHOR

    Carolyn Fields 

    2 months ago from South Dakota, USA

    Thank you, Pamela. I am grateful for the feedback!

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 

    2 months ago from Sunny Florida

    I had never heard of Noom until now. It does not sound like a program I would like. I appreciate your well-written article that covered Weight Watchers and Noom.

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