I’m on WW – can I also do Intermittent Fasting?

What to consider if you are looking to combine these two eating plans.
Published November 28, 2019

If you know about WW you know that it’s a proven weight loss program, with more than 60 years of results that’s based in science. With the newest myWW program it is even more customized than before –When it comes to losing weight, everyone’s needs are different, with so many different food preferences, cultural backgrounds, lifestyles and eating styles. What works well for your sister, coworker, or best friend may not work as well for you.



The best approach to weight loss is the one that gives you the most flexibility, and that fits with your lifestyle, because that's the one that will be the most livable for you. A hallmark of the WW program is its livability. We know that too many restrictions can be hard to live with in the long run - that’s why with WW no foods are off limits and why we built the WW program as a framework - one that works with your preferences and eating styles. 



With that said, intermittent fasting (IF) is a trending eating approach  that is purported to help you lose weight by restricting the hours during which you eat. It is also called time restricted eating. While time restricted eating can lead to weight loss, research suggests this is largely due to a reduction in calorie intake not the mechanics of having periods of not eating itself.



"We don't recommend any approach to eating that is overly-restrictive, but for some members, limiting eating to certain times of the day can be a helpful behavioural strategy," says WW global director of nutrition Zoe Griffiths, a UK-based registered dietitian. " There is no ‘one size fits all’ approach when it comes to adopting a healthier pattern of eating. What’s important is finding foods you enjoy and establishing an eating pattern you can live on for the long term—one that doesn't leave you feeling overly hungry, which can lead to overeating and feelings of restriction that are unsustainable," she adds.



“Developing a healthier pattern of eating and achieving sustainable weight loss is not about quick fixes. If restricting the times of the day that you eat fits with your family, fits with your lifestyle and doesn’t leave you feeling restricted - in other words is something that you feel that you could live with for the long term- then it may be a helpful strategy”.



How could I work WW and Time Restricted Feeding together?



If you are thinking about combining WW’s 60-plus years of scientifically-proven weight loss success with restricting the times of day that you eat  you could look to the 16:8 approach, where you eat during an eight-hour window, and not eat for 16 hours.


On WW you are given a SmartPoints budget to spend on the foods you love, when you eat is up to you - Spending your SmartPoints during your pre-defined ‘eating window’ if that is your choice. No matter what your eating window, healthy eating behaviors will help you to achieve your health and wellness goals.


A healthy pattern of eating includes foods from a variety of food groups, so focus on variety of your choices within and across food groups. To help keep you satisfied and avoid feelings of hunger, eating regularly and making food choices that will help to fill you up can be a useful approach; we all know how it feels when we are feeling hungry and faced with making choices of what to eat for our next meal - it could set us off track by either making food choices that we had not planned for, or to overeat, or both!