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Weight Loss Program for Women: What's Best For You?

Woman with her Profile by Sanford weight loss coach.

If you’ve ever searched the Internet for weight loss programs for women, you probably found a massive amount of health information and plan choices.

After reading about low-carb diets, plant-based diets, and other weight loss programs, you may have felt overwhelmed, frustrated and confused. Profile is here to help you find the plan that’s right for you.

How To Find Weight Loss Programs for Women?

Finding the right weight loss program for women shouldn’t be stressful. Understanding what contributes to weight loss, what a successful weight loss program looks like, and knowing what questions you should ask can help you narrow down your choices.

Understand the Factors that Contribute to Your Weight

If you are a woman wanting to lose weight, you should understand the factors that influence how effective they can be.

1. Age

After women reach the age of 40, their bodies don’t respond to their weight loss efforts the way they used to. Lean muscle begins to decline, and their bodies produce less estrogen. The body tries to compensate for the decreased estrogen by adding a layer of fat from the waist down, because fat produces estrogen. This leads to extra pounds around the middle, and metabolism slows down.

Lifestyle changes, stress and being sedentary all happen as they get older, and these factors can have an influence on their weight loss efforts.

2. Gender

Men typically lose weight at a faster rate than women. According to a study in the Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism journal, men usually have more muscle and a higher metabolic rate than women, which helps them burn more calories.

Men also tend to carry more fat around the middle, and when this fat is burned, their metabolic rate improves.

Women carry more weight around their hips, thighs and rear, and when this fat is lost, it does not affect their metabolic rate.

3. Health Conditions

There are certain medical conditions that can hinder a woman’s weight loss efforts.

These include hormonal disorders such as polycystic ovarian syndrome, diabetes, and hypothyroidism; sleep disorders such as upper airway respiratory syndrome or sleep apnea; or eating disorders such as bulimia or carbohydrate craving syndrome.

Features of the Best Weight Loss Program for Women

Choose a diet program that works with your lifestyle

Women who are looking to lose weight should begin their journey by consulting with their medical provider. A physician or medical professional can advise you on diet options and how much weight is healthy for you to lose.

Look for important weight loss program features, such as:

1. Flexibility

You will have the best weight loss results if the program you choose can be adapted to your lifestyle. If you are a busy mom juggling responsibilities at home and work, you will need a plan that can fit into your routine. Rigid, restrictive diets will be hard to stick to in the long term.

2. Balance

The best weight loss programs for women offer a wide variety of foods from each of the four food groups. This balance is important because these foods are rich in nutrients, vitamins and minerals you need to stay healthy while reaching your weight loss goals. And women’s nutritional needs change as they age. For example, women need more foods with iron and folic acid during pregnancy or their reproductive years, but less as they approach menopause. The best plans can be adapted for women in every stage of life.

3. Likeability

If you don’t enjoy the food on your weight loss plan, you won’t stick to it. Choose a diet plan that offers the types of food you like.

4. Sustainability

How sustainable are the weight loss diets you are considering? Weight loss programs for women should include a maintenance phase that can help you keep off the weight you worked so hard to lose.

5. Support

Successful weight loss programs for women offer accountability and support, such as one-on-one coaching. Weight loss coaches help you reach your goal weight by providing motivation, accountability, and answers to your questions.

6. Science-Based

Look for a diet that was created by researchers, health experts and doctors. The program should include nutritious meal plans, a healthy amount of fruits, vegetables and protein that women need, and the support of science. Doing your homework will prevent you from following fad diets, which won’t get you the sustainable results you are looking for.

7. Tracking Technologies

A diet that offers a way to capture your progress will keep you accountable and motivated. Whether it’s through an app or on paper, recording your activity and the food you eat will help you reach your weight loss goals.

READ: What to Consider When Choosing a Weight Loss Program

Questions to Ask Yourself Before Choosing a Diet

Ask important questions as you shop diet programs

The success of any diet requires an inward look about what you are realistically prepared to commit to. Here are a few questions to ask yourself, and answer honestly.

1. Do I have time for food preparation?

It takes time to plan meals, go to the grocery store and cut up fruits, vegetables and snacks for later. How can you fit this into your schedule? If you can’t, consider a diet plan that offers prepared meals.

2. Do I have social support?

Do you have a significant other, spouse, friend or sibling that can help keep you motivated? Studies show that these types of strong friendships not only help women with life’s transitions, but also lower blood pressure, increase immunity and promote healing.

3. Am I getting enough sleep?

Lack of sleep causes hormone changes that impact your appetite and fullness, leading to impulsive, unhealthy food choices. Less than two-thirds of women actually get the recommended seven to nine hours of sleep they need each night.

4. Am I stressed?

Stress can lead to missed meals or unhealthy food choices. When you’re feeling stressed, your body releases cortisol and adrenaline which signals your body to slow down certain functions that are not necessary in a crisis, such as your digestive system. The Cleveland Clinic reports that women are more likely than men to gain weight as a result of stress.

5. Am I taking any medications that could impact my diet efforts?

Certain medications may interfere with losing weight, such as antihistamines, alpha or beta-blockers, insulin, progestins or tricyclic antidepressants. Talk to your doctor about how to lose weight despite these medications.

Questions to Ask About Diet Plans

After you’ve narrowed down your diet plan choices, find the answers to the following questions:

1. Is there a specific meal plan?

Many programs will have a meal plan to follow with nutritious choices that fuel your body. These plans should take into account the nutritional needs women have at various stages of life

2. Are there meal replacements or supplements that are required?

Some diet plans offer meal replacements at certain stages that fill the nutritional gap and keep you feeling full.

3.What are the recommendations for physical activity?

It’s important to incorporate movement you enjoy into your lifestyle. Ask about the type of exercise included in the program, and if it includes strength training. Lifting weights is an underrated way for women to increase their slowing metabolism, which ultimately helps them lose weight.

4. Is coaching offered?

One-on-one coaching provides women with encouragement and education to help you stay on track and reach your goals.

5. How do I apply this diet plan to the real world?

Ultimately, your eating habits should support a healthy lifestyle but still give you the flexibility to enjoy going out to eat and special events. Your coach can help you establish strategies for these occasions.

6. What is the most effective method?

If you’ve tried plans such as the Mayo Clinic diet, a low carb diet, Weight Watchers, the Dash diet, Jenny Craig, or the Mediterranean diet and they did not work, look for other options. Try to find meal plans that have features that the others didn’t, so you can increase your chance of success.

RELATED: Ways To Jumpstart Weight Loss

What is the #1 Choice for Women?

We believe that Profile is! Profile offers the support of one-on-one coaching, personalized meal plans, and nutritious, delicious foods that you will enjoy while still losing weight.

We think Profile is one the best weight loss programs out there for women because our plans are tailored to you, no matter what stage of health or life you are in. And, it’s based on science.

We create personalized nutrition, activity, and lifestyle coaching designed to help members lose weight and keep it off! Your health coach will guide your journey with regular check-ins, work with you to set customized health goals, and provide ongoing support from the beginning stages through your maintenance or “Sustain” stage.

Want to know why we think Profile is the total package? Listen to what one of our health coaches has to say:

If you are ready to learn more about the Profile Plan and how it can help you reach your goals, please schedule a free consultation with us!