Foods For Thought: The Most Loved and Hated Diets in America

Weight Watchers, Slim-Fast and Atkins, oh my! Consumers rank their favorite weight loss plans

It’s January, you’re starting fresh and this is the year you’re going to shape up. But with a zillion eating plans on the market today it can be tricky to know which (if any) may be right for you.

Enter research company NetBase, which recently released a comprehensive survey on diets, measuring consumer enthusiasm for various weight loss plans. Their results revealed Weight Watchers is ahead of the pack. Other positively rated plans: Atkins, South Beach, Zone and Slim-Fast. Jenny Craig has begun creeping to “Dislike” territory, a land currently lorded over by Nutri-System. Here, our thoughts on why each plan ranked the way it did:

Weight Watchers
Pro: Serving as their spokesperson has helped Jennifer Hudson shed double her body weight. You go, girl!
Con: The last time we got on a scale in front of a room full of women, we were having our fat circled while being forced to beer bong Pepé Lopez Silver Tequila.

Slim-Fast
Pro: You only need to eat one meal per day, making it perfect for busy folks or teenage girls with eating disorders.
Con: Reviews suggest that the line’s “rich chocolate brownie bars” or “banana cream shake”  taste a bit like chalk

Zone Diet
Pro: Jennifer Aniston’s butt. No one can keep their eyes -- or hands -- off of the Zone devotee, from Jackie Warner (“That butt just goes boom”) to grabby Gerard Butler.
Con: High-fat ice cream is allowed, but only a half a cup. Have you ever seen what a half-cup of anything looks like? Take a light bulb. Cut off the narrower bottom half. Fill the rest with Edy’s Peanut Butter Cup. Purposefully slice your bottom lip open while enjoying, because a blood-gushing oral injury is the only way to keep yourself from diving face-first into the tub.

Atkins Diet
Pro: Out with boring bananas and dry English muffins. Bring on the bacon and eggs, cheddar cheese omelets and steak alforno! A functioning aorta is overrated, anyways.
Con: Restricting carbohydrates will cause your body to burn its own fat for fuel, which is terrific for your waistline but can cause bad breath and constipation. It’s hard to show off your fabulous new body when you’re spending all of your free time in the bathroom, parked on the toilet while gargling with hospital-grade mouthwash.

South Beach Diet
Pro: Carrots, onions and tomatoes used to be the on "foods to avoid" list but are now allowed at various stages of the diet. Bunnies everywhere, rejoice.
Con: The 14-day induction phase prohibits bread, rice, potatoes, pasta, baked goods, fruit, and alcohol, but the company promises that, after a couple of days, you won't miss any of it. Yeah, that’s because, by that point, you’ll be chain-smoking cigarettes. The only thing that's not banned on the plan -- and totally fat-free!

NutriSystem
Pro: You can place your order for the Basic, Vegetarian, Diabetic or Silver plan online -- perfect for couch potatoes.
Con: Reviewers have called dishes like Oriental Beef with Green Peppers and Noodles "not even fit for animals." Enough said.

Jenny Craig
Pro: Hey – it worked for Kirstie Alley! Oh, wait…
Con: Expect to spend about $600 a month on prepackaged meals alone. You can get your butt liposuctioned for $3000. Do the math.

What do you think of today's most popular weight loss plans?
Chime in below!

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