Weight Watchers core food list


I put that as the title because it’s currently the #1 search term on my site and I want this entry to start to build up better pagerank than [this one](http://www.momathome.com/viewfromhome/misc/weight_watchers_new_core_plan_3_weeks_and_not_counting.php). I quit working for Weight Watchers last week.

If you came here just looking for that list folks have been begging me for, then [go here](http://www.geocities.com/core_food/index.htm). There, I’ve done it. No one can fire me over giving the link. If you think just having a list of foods will help you lose weight, then enjoy. It’s a great program and I hope you’re successful following it on your own.

Updated 10/30/06: PLEASE NOTE: IF THE LINK IS DOWN, I HAVE ABSOLUTELY NO CONTROL OVER IT. I DO NOT KNOW THE PERSON OR PERSONS WHO POSTED THAT INFORMATION, NOR HAVE I EVER COMMUNICATED WITH THEM. I have stated many times that I do not believe that simply eating from a list of foods is an effective way of losing weight. I only posted the link so people would stop asking me for it. If the link is down or has been removed, then I’m sorry. I know of no other resource for getting the list other than at your local Weight Watchers Center or website and I won’t be looking for one. Thanks for understanding.

Why did I quit? I’m looking at my [MasterList Pro file](http://www.safarisoftware.com) (more on that great application in another entry) and I currently have 14 projects going. Some are personal, related to the move in June or the kids or volunteer work. More than half are clients that are paying me far more than my Weight Watchers salary. There are just so many hours in a day, and Weight Watchers is as close as you can get to a volunteer job that pays. Let me explain something…Weight Watchers employees are all lifetime members. That is, Weight Watchers only hires people who have been successful on the program. That is good business sense. But Weight Watchers �sells� employment as a feel-good kind of thing. Do it to keep your weight down, do it to socialize and work in small 2.5 hour chunks. No one works for Weight Watchers in a meeting room for the money, unless it’s to pay for gas each week.

As a receptionist, you get paid a base rate for working a meeting, plus a cut of member fees and product along a scale that I could never quite figure out aside from the fact that it didn’t add up to much. Connecticut has a higher minimum wage than other states ($7.10 I think) and during slow months there were some meetings that my actual pay was so bad I was automatically bumped **up** to minimum wage rate. Come on, I’m nearly 40 years old. I haven’t worked for minimum wage since I was 17. Weight Watchers is **not** hurting. The stock is doing well and press has never been better. They just don’t invest a lot of their money in low/entry-level personnel that turn over the way theirs does. I could work in a grocery store for more money, and I wouldn’t have to be an armchair psychologist to do it. It takes some serious people skills to be able to handle the clerical work in a job where a calculator and a pencil are as high-tech as it gets, yet at the same time give each person standing in front of you loving and direct attention while they lay their emotions bare at your feet. Literally. It’s a big responsibility for a job where the last and definitely least reward is financial.

When you’re working on a project where your hourly rate works out to be close to triple digits, leaving to go earn about $7 per hour for 3 hours of your time (not including getting there and back) can get to be a bit of imposition on your life. I was beginning to resent the time I had to work for Weight Watchers, and that’s not good. That’s not good for me, that’s not good for the members and that’s not good for my co-workers that had to deal with me rushing to my cell phone every available minute (I tried to keep it on vibrate when I was actually dealing with people).

I’m still following the program. I certainly can’t afford to buy new clothes now so I have to keep my weight down. My version of Weight Watchers is to try and snack wisely, eat only when I’m really hungry and when given a choice, go for the core.



  1. Catherine Olds says:

    Hi, I just found your site, and I am thinking about going on Weight Watchers. What I need though, is a fairly detailed menu plan with simple recipes and easy to get foods. Which of the plans do you think would work for me? Thanks, Cathy

  2. Judi Sohn says:

    Sounds like core is a better fit for you. However, neither plan really offers detailed menus.

  3. Jayme says:

    Judi, thank you for posting your perspective on being a WW employee. I am a Lifetime member and have been invited to work for them and become a leader. The “giving back” part of it is so rewarding to me, and I know that it would help keep me on track. However, I participate in a lot of online weight loss forums and also maintain my own personal weight loss website, so I’m concerned about the conflict of interest. I don’t want to have to censor myself too much if I become a WW employee. I think I am able to communicate better and reach more people with my online writings than I ever would as a receptionist. Anyway, thanks for posting your opinions – I will consider them when making my decision! 🙂

  4. dar says:

    I want to know where the folks that sell these kits on ebay get them to sell? I’ve considered purchasing a kit from ebay as I don’t want to attend meetings or join weight watchers, I just want to do it on my own at home. I’ve been on the ww international site and looked at the kits they sell for ww at home and they are too expensive! Do you know if you can purchase items from weight watchers by just walking in, or do you actually have to sign up? Thanks!

  5. Judi Sohn says:

    You can purchase cookbooks, starter kits, bars, tools, etc. from any Weight Watchers center without being member. However, you can only buy in small quantities because WW is trying to stop those folks who are selling kits online.

    However, you can only get the POINTS slider and Week 1 book by becoming a member or ordering it through the WW website. If there is a regisration sale it is less than $15 to join and there’s no commitment so it’s not a big deal.

  6. kat says:

    I just found your site and have printed off the Core Lists. They seem helpful. I’d like to try following a program such as this on my own. Money is tight at the moment – but I really want to lose about 40 lbs. Any suggestion on getting started?

  7. kathy Cawte says:

    Hiya i really want to start weight watchers. I was wondering, i have a huge appetite and just love the food cheese, ansd other fatties. I was wondering if you could send me a menu that i could follow. Food that i can eat every day.
    My sister as a menu but not run by points but just a menu with food you can eat at all times and not put weight on.
    Please get back in touch xxx

  8. K Hatch says:

    I just joined WW online. Will I receive any point books or anything to help me get started? I am having trouble listing my foods because it takes so long to figure out the points on the food search. Do I have to buy the started kit to be successful?

  9. Angela ~ Kansas City MO says:

    YEAH! I am so happy I found YOu !!!!!! Thank you for posting the core food lists! I was a WW memeber about 6 months ago, and was never given such good info! MUCHAS GRACIAS

  10. Anonymous says:

    Interesting perspective on what it’s like to work for Weight Watchers as a leader (and yes, I DID find this page looking for a list of Core items). It’s sad to know that even with a program so good, WW employees are still considered bottom of the barrel to the company. Corporate America rules all these days, eh? Good for you, standing up for yourself and STILL maintaining your losses!

  11. Saundra says:

    Hi, I’ve just started core and find it more difficult than points. I’ll keep trying

  12. Jay says:

    I have been on WW for 10 weeks and can see your point so much. My leader works her tail off and I wouldn’t want her job for anything but for that kind of money-no thank you! I am very resentful of the fact the every little thing is an additional charge! I think $11 a week should cover access to the etools and the core list ect. If you want the extra software or high tech gadgets I could see paying, but the list of foods!?! Having to pay extra for those things just fries me. Thanks for the post!! Good luck in your future.

  13. Carol Pehrson says:

    Thank you for your time at WW and for you honesty. It is so refreshing. I’ve gone for 1 year weekly and lost 45 lbs but the leader is driving us away. She is a nut case. Every week it is “I’m so funny, ha, ha and stories about her family” My intrduction was 10 minutes and i was on my own. We can’t get rid of her, no one else to fill the spot and we need a WW in town. I decided to try it on my own for 2 monts and if I don’t loose, I rejoin at the Jan. special. Quite frankly I am sick of how WW screws members. I can’t believe that they charge for their online stuff. You’d think as a paying mamber we’d get a break. Thanks again. Carol

  14. Chris says:

    I thank you so much for your posting, your honesty, and your integrity!

    I too am considering rejoining WW again after many years and am exploring what it entails (entales?). But I also feel like its too much money for something I can do on my own, or with the web. It seems WW is BIG business nickle & dimeing folks without rewarding or recognizing it’s most valuable assets – its leaders!

    But they do what they do because they can – so we must do what we must do – and your post helps us – so thanks again. Best wishes with all your endeavors.

  15. Amy Baldwin says:

    Hi I have been concidering joining WW for a while but I am a very busy Mom with four little girls. I have a huge appitite and am always hungry. I hate it. Is the core plan unlimited quanities of these foods? I guess I do not understand the way the program works. Thanks so much.

  16. Deb Akey says:

    I have to agree with your decision to quit your Weight Watcher’s job – they asked me to do it and I declined for many of the same reasons. I have recently started my own blog and I feel I can do more through that than I ever could as a leader. That being said, I am eternally grateful that my leader has stood the test of time. I would never have succeeded without his endless dedication.

  17. Melissa says:

    I just found your website and I really appreciate you giving up the sacred core food listing. I have been a member since May 2005 and was doing points. I have now switched to core and found a difference in your food listing. I have the books WW offers with latest revision date of 11/04 and it says that Cambell’s bean and bacon (ham) soup is NOT core and your site shows it is. Can you help me figure out which is correct. I just tried that soup for the first time today and fell in love! Now to determine if it is FREE ro not….. haha. Thanks! Melissa

  18. Alexus Jones says:

    I was just writing to ask you if you would please post a flex plan food point value list.I would really like to see the list of all foods with their point value.thanks a bunch!

  19. Judi Sohn says:

    No, I’m not going to post a full list here. You can go on to eBay and buy books of the full list, I’m sure. I’ve said it often, the best way to follow Weight Watchers it to attend the meetings and get the materials there. Barring that, you can find websites that list point values by Googling for them. This is not one of those sites.

  20. Shari says:


    I am going to join WW online and was wondering what plan to go with. Can you have WW deserts with the core plan?

    Thank much,

  21. Judi Sohn says:

    Shari, when you join and read the materials it will be clear. There’s no “can’t have” on either plan. On the Core plan you can eat WW desserts or anything you want. The only “can’t have” is if you’re out of points for the week and it’s not a core food.

    Assuming that you still have weekly points left, if it’s not a core food you have to count the points of the item against your weekly allotment. There are no core WW brand desserts that I know of. They all have the points on the package and you have to count them.

  22. momof2 says:

    your core list link isn’t working:-(

  23. Judi Sohn says:

    It’s not my list, momof2. I just linked to another source and I have absolutely nothing to do with it. It appears that it’s a Geocities (free) site and they’ve exceeded bandwidth.

    Sorry, you’ll have to Google for something else or buy the program direct from Weight Watchers. I still have no intention of hosting the list on my site but if I see a better link I’ll mention it.

  24. brandy says:

    I purchased a starter kit from ebay that included the dining out companion, core foods companion, diary, and organizer bag. I was going to do it at home on my own, but am considering going to at least one meeting to see what it is all about ( IT IS FREE AFTER ALL FOR THE 1st VISIT). My question is, are any of the other products that I have seen on the internet for sale at these meetings (scales, pedometers, cookbooks, ect)? THANKS!

  25. Judi Sohn says:

    Oh yeah, Brandy. Don’t worry…the folks in the meeting centers are very, very, very, very happy to sell you stuff. They may not have the older materials, but you can be sure that you can pick up the scales, pedometers, cookbooks, planners, etc. at the meeting center.

    When I was working for Weight Watchers we had a lot of folks who came in to buy product who were doing the program at home.

  26. Randi says:

    i have the books with the points, how do I figure out many points I can have? I weigh 176 lbs, and my boyfriend weighs about 200

  27. Judi Sohn says:

    [I found the chart here.](http://www.lesslisa.com/wwchart.htm)

  28. Randi says:

    Judi, thank you so much!
    I’ve heard there are “activity points” as well. Is this true? As in, if you go to the gym you get extra points?

  29. Randi says:

    Oh also, are all the points the same for both men & women?

  30. Gale says:

    hi I just found this site. I was on Flex plan for a year, lost 15 pounds, then gained back 8,
    :(. I was getting bored with the flex plan so I started on Core plan a week ago. I lost 2 pounds. I’m glad about that, but I’ve noticed that I feel almost bloated at the end of each day.Could it be from eating so much fiber? I’ve basically cut out all sweets including WW desserts (trying to save those 35 points) and have eaten things like puffed rice cereal in their place. I was hoping for a bigger loss the first week. Is this normal?
    Thanks for your site. I enjoyed looking at your house pictures! BEEN THERE, DONE THAT!! It’s nice when its all done, but living through it is not fun!!

  31. Frances Gilliam says:

    What is my weekly points allowance if I am following the Core program?


  32. Judi Sohn says:

    Weekly point allowance: 35 points.

    I’ll say it again…this program works best if you’re following it from Weight Watchers. Just reading a list of core foods is not going to give you the kind of success you’re looking for.

  33. aimee says:

    Thank you for sharing this information. I am on a tight budget and can’t afford to go to meetings. Not that I got much from them anyway. I am getting married in September thank you for sharing your insight. My problem is that I plateau big time. No one has ever been able to help me over that. Maybe the core program will work. thank you again.

  34. Jean says:

    I also left Weight Watchers for the very reasons you described. I might add that I was a leader for 15 years and NEVER received a raise during the whole time. I burned bridges when I left by venting my frustrations. I, like you, believe WW is by far the best program out there and still maintain my 40 lbs that I lost.

  35. Emma says:

    Thank you so much for this information! I was just wondering, is it 35 points per week on the core plan no matter who you are or what you weigh?

  36. Tracy Cookson says:

    For the person who was wondering about a list of foods (if you approve posting it), our wonderful Weight Watchers leader tells EVERYbody to go to dwlz.com (that stands for Dotti’s Weight Loss Zone.com). Dotti is a WW lifetime member who operates her own website, and she has a HUGE list of foods with points values, as well as a list of 230-something restaurants with menus and points values. I use the restaurant guide all the time!!

    That’s too bad about WW not paying much to work for them; I was looking forward to working for them when I become a lifetime member. It sounds like I won’t be able to afford to, though (waahh!!) Our leader encouraged everyone to try working for WW; she did warn us that the pay wasn’t much at all, she just has never said how much it wasn’t!

    I still think I’ll try it, though; it’s not like babysitting kids in my home (which is what I do right now) has me rolling in the dough. Maybe I CAN afford to work for them!

    One more thing– it really chaps my hide, too, that we pay $44/month to be members, and that that doesn’t include access to the online tools. What a rip-off!! Other than that little annoyance, though, I love WW. Plus, I created an Excel spreadsheet to help me calculate my points, using their formula as stated in their patent application:

    (Sorry, I did have to edit here. I know Weight Watchers has come down on websites posting this info)

  37. mary says:

    is cool whip on core if you used the fat free or sugar free? thank you

  38. Rhonda says:

    Hi! I have been doing Weight Watchers for 10 weeks and have lost 26 pounds. I want to find a Weight Watchers Slow Good Cookbook but don’t want to pay an outrageous price. Do you know anyone I might be able to purchase it from or get recipes from it? Ebay prices are outrageous.



  39. Edna says:

    I thought you’d like to know that your site has been mentioned on the Weight Watcher staff site. There has been a big change in how they are to pay mileage, and it has generated a lot of anger — yes they are cutting the actual mileage allowed, while increasing the amount paid for miles allowed, thereby cutting most staff’s money paid. Your reasons for quitting ring true for many of us who are currently working for WW and considering what to do with this latese insult.

  40. Judi Sohn says:


    Wow. I don’t which amazes me more, the fact that my site came up on a WW staff site or that there *is* a WW staff site in the first place. Is it new?

    It doesn’t surprise me that mileage is an issue. We heard about that constantly in our staff meetings years ago. They would check Mapquest to make sure that people were reporting mileage accurately and we were encouraged to look for subs who were close by before calling anyone who had to drive a longer distance. Most of the time we were just happy to find a sub at all!

  41. jennifer says:

    i weigh 160 and need to know how many points i get a day on ww

  42. Doug Warren says:

    When I am dining out and I know the point total for a particular dish, but I am on the Core plan, do I count the points for the entire dish, or can I eliminate the points for a core item within the dish. For example, if I get the Confetti Chicken at Applebee’s, which is 7 points on flex, do I count all 7 points or can I eliminate 3 points because the chicken breast in the dish normally counts as 3 points, but it is a core food? I hope my question makes sense.

    Thanks in advance,

  43. W says:


    Thank you for posting such a wonderful site. It is just what I was looking for.

    I was reading the points allotment and weight charg and have a question. If I weigh 175lbs and want to lose 25lbs, how many many points per day do I get? Thanks.

  44. alana says:

    When you are discussing pay, are you talking about what they pay the receptionists or the actual leaders? Is there a difference? I just read about the leaders filing a lawsuit and so now WW is paying more. I ask this because I am thinking of becoming a leader…I can’t find out what they pay the leaders anywhere so I hate making that a goal if it isn’t reasonable. Thanks for the site!

  45. Connie says:

    Just like anything, you chose to work for WW and now you choose not to. Who cares how much you or anyone else there gets paid. Its just like anything in this world, and if you feel like you’ve been taken advantage of get out of the situation and you did! So stop whining!

  46. Magee says:

    Thank you!

  47. Amy Grady says:

    I was very happy top see a Core list of foods which is helpful. I am a lifetime member, but always have to confront my wieght and the Core plan has been excellent. I also would like to say that I very much liked your labor comments on Weight Watchers. Weight Watcher workers are dedicated specialists who help many of us with weight problems. The company is doing well and it is just and right that workers receive a decent wage for the special work that they do. I am a teacher and certainly would not teach for minimum wage. Let the company share the profits!

  48. Angela Ziemba says:

    Do you know where I can get a copy of the Slow Good cook book or at least some of the recipes. It is very difficult to find.

  49. J says:

    So – why does weightwatchers work for so many people – but if you try to diet at home, watch what you eat – it’s not as successful? I don’t get it! I’m ordering some starter books from amazon – any suggestions? I can’t afford to go to the meetings right now (nursing student) also another BIG reason I need to get healthier! I think people in the health field should be more conscious about their own health. Please email advice!

  50. possible leader says:

    Are there any other blogs that talk about what it is like to work for weight watchers?
    I’m thinking of becoming a weight watchers leader so obviously I was very interested in your opinions about working for weight watchers. Obviously, I can’t get on the weight watches staff blog because I am not a staff member yet.

    I tried googling employment and weight watchers and got millions of sites but most don’t talk about working for weight watchers except the official weight watchers site.

    Luckily, I not hurting financially so I realize this really won’t pay the bills.

    Please don’t use my name or email address on ANY sites as I want to remain unnamed

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