Review of Weight Loss Resources – 8/10

by Ali on April 25, 2008

I’ve mentioned the site Weight Loss Resources before; it’s a great service for anyone who wants to lose weight or who is struggling to maintain their weight loss.

Price £7 – £9 per month
Software type Online system
Main features Food/exercise diary, food/exercise database, charts and reports of nutritional intake and weight loss achieved, articles, contests, forums.
Aimed at Anyone, male or female, with regular internet access. The community includes a lot of office workers.

Weight Loss Resources is centred around its food diary. Each day, you log everything you’ve eaten, and how much exercise you’ve done – the site automatically calculates how many calories you should eat and how many of those you’ve consumed.

Best features of Weight Loss Resources

I rarely stick to filling in a food diary, and Weight Loss Resources (often abbreviated to WLR) is the only long-term method that’s worked for me. It does all the adding-up automatically, and is a great time-saver. The site allows you to create recipes which you can reuse. For example, I made one for “Stir Fry, Prawn, Veg and Noodes” rather than separately entering every food on my plate every time I ate that meal:

Screenshot of Weight Loss Resources' Food Diary

Being able to see charts and reports is also a big boost to motivation – and lets you know if you’re veering off the rails. I particularly like the daily pie charts of how many calories were consumed at each meal, and what percentage of calories came from carbohydrate, protein, fat or alcohol.

Screenshot of Weight Loss Resources' Nutrition Profile

The site has a very active user community, as shown in the forums; discussions tend to be chatty, friendly and very supportive. My one gripe is that the Advice & Support and Off Topic boards tend to be so “noisy” that posts from the morning have often slipped onto the second page by the time I get home in the evening.

Screenshot of Weight Loss Resources' Forums

The databases of food (there are UK and US versions) cover a huge range of supermarket and restaurant brand items, as well as generic products. If you try to find a product which isn’t in the database, you can add it yourself – you just need the nutritional information for 100g, 100ml, or per serving (usually on the package) and the serving size.

WLR has an wonderful, friendly, Help Team who are on hand 8am to 10pm to answer queries about health, exercise and nutrition, and also to assist with any technical problems. They’re very good at sourcing nutritional information for products which don’t have this on the packaging, and they’ll also “clean up” any duplicate or old entries in the database if you drop them an email or post on the Help Team forum.

Factors which might put you off Weight Loss Resources

The site does charge a subscription fee – ranging from £7-£9/month (depending on how long you sign up for). If you just want to track calories, or just want to join other dieters on web forums, there are plenty of free sites where you can do this.

My impression of the software is that it’s a bit “clunky”. There have been some great upgrades over the past few years, since when I began using it, but the site doesn’t have the smooth, modern look and feel of others such as the Times Health Club.

Screenshot of the Times Health Club page

The WLR site sometimes crashes and is occasionally offline for several hours. This can be very frustrating if you’re busy and have little time to spend on the site.

Should you join Weight Loss Resources?

If you’re looking for motivation, an easy way to track calories, advice, support and friendship, and a safe programme for successful weight loss – go for it! I’ve lost about two stone during my on-and-off membership of WLR. And seeing figures such as fibre, fruit and veg, and exercise completed on the screen was a real encouragement towards healthy habits.

Screenshot of Weight Loss Resources' Exercise Diary

Lots of articles (such as product reviews, tips, and general advice) are available pre-login. You can also get a 24 hour free trial – and you don’t have to enter any card details for this.

I’ve always found Weight Loss Resources great value for money. I’ve unsubscribed now – having finally achieved my goal weight! – but still strongly recommend it. You’ll almost certainly make some new friends, too: Anna, our diarist, is a lovely woman who I “met” on the site.

(Disclaimer: I’ve not been paid, bribed or encouraged in any way to write this post – I don’t get anything from Weight Loss Resources if you do sign up, I’m just reviewing and recommending it because it’s been a hugely helpful and enjoyable resource for me! All screenshots are taken from the Weight Loss Resources/Times Health club sites)

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