The Best Weight Loss Programs of 2020 - The Most Effective Diet Plans To Lose Weight

article by Sandra Trentino
January 14, 2020
Many people dread the thought of New Year, knowing they’re going to try and commit to a weight-loss plan or diet to shed the extra pounds accumulated during the festive season. Last year, a YouGov poll revealed that 37% of Americans decided they wanted to either eat healthier or exercise more and it’s unlikely those statistics will change much going into 2020.
Another thing those statistics revealed was that people’s approach to health has shifted significantly over the past decade. In 2008, the most common New Year aspiration was to lose weight, whereas now it seems we’re more concerned with a healthy diet than simply shedding the pounds.

This is hardly surprising when you consider just how successful (or not) quick-fix diet solutions have proven to be. Research indicates that not only do nearly 70% of fad diets fail due to people neglecting to couple them an appropriate exercise regime, but 65% of people who successfully complete a fad diet will end up gaining all of their weight back within a matter of months.

To help you avoid those trendy diets, unhealthy diet supplements, and expensive yet ineffective detox teas, we’ve decided to share some vital information about weight-loss plans, how they work and how to choose the best one for your weight-loss targets, lifestyle, and eating habits. Read on and gain the knowledge you need to overhaul your lifestyle in 2020.

What is a Best Weight Loss Program

Usually, a weight-loss plan combines elements of healthy eating and exercise to give its users the best chance of achieving their target weight. In addition to specifying a weekly menu plan or giving guidelines regarding calorie-intake and food selection, the best weight-loss plans of 2020 give you clear exercise regimes or allocate you fitness points for activities you perform on a day-to-day basis, like housekeeping, for example.

Some weight-loss plans are very stringent, giving you a restrictive meal plan and tough exercise plan to keep you focused and dedicated. Others are more flexible and aimed at rewarding you for every piece of fruit you eat and step you take while on the program.

Your weight-loss goals, personality and lifestyle al impact on your potential to lose weight, so selecting a plan that fits in with all these criteria gives you the best chance of success. Avoiding fad diets and fast-track options is important as these are rarely sustainable. When choosing a weight-loss plan, it’s important to consider the following points:

Are certain foods completely banned?

Too much of anything is a bad thing, but so is none at all. Diets like the macrobiotic diet that heavily restricts the intake of animal products can impact negatively on your body’s balance of vitamins and minerals, leaving you with nutritional deficiencies.

Are the weight-loss predictions safe?

Losing more than two pounds per week is considered to be both unhealthy and unsustainable. The faster you lose it, the more likely you are to put it back on.

Do I have to purchase specific foods or supplements as a part of the diet?

There are lots of individuals and companies out there keen to get their slice of the pie, so to speak. With the US weight loss industry’s net worth sitting at around $66 billion at the end of 2017, it’s obvious that diet supplements, plans, and programs are doing well but that doesn’t mean you have to help them. Pay for a plan, by all means, but try to sustain yourself on natural foods rather than dietary supplements or detox drinks.

How Do Top Weight Loss Programs Work?

While every weight loss plan is different, they do usually share certain features, such as menu and exercise plans, tips on dieting, expert support and coaching. This approach is effective at helping you lose weight but may not carry as much of a punch when it comes to helping you keep that weight off.

Whatever weight-loss plan you choose, you need to think long and hard about how dedicated you are. Having a healthy lifestyle for a few weeks or even months isn’t enough unless you make a lifelong commitment to a healthier lifestyle.

Some weight-loss plans are designed to help you lose weight within a specified period, like the South Beach Diet, while others encourage you to carry on meeting your healthy eating and exercise targets for a much longer period, or even forever, like Weight Watchers.

To get started on any online weight-loss plan, you’ll need to take the following steps:

Step 1: Sign up for your chosen weight-loss plan

Step 2: Complete the registration and pay for your plan (Jillian Michaels offers a free 7-day trial which is great for those not 100% convinced her plan is right for them)

Step 3: If there’s an app available that will enable you to access the plan from your smartphone, download it.

Step 4: Select from the options available to create the perfect combination of meal and exercise plans.

Step 5: Get going and track your progress using your app

Step 6: Stay motivated by connecting with others via the weight-loss plan’s online community

Step 7: Reward yourself by treating yourself to a new outfit or a weekend away

The most important thing when it comes to weight-loss plans is to view them as a tool rather than a set of restrictions. If you don’t like one of the exercises or want to substitute one ingredient for another, go for it. As soon as a weight-loss plan becomes a weight around your neck, your motivation and dedication will take some serious knocks, so making sure the plan suits you is your best chance of success.

What are the Benefits of Top Weight Loss Programs

Inevitably, different weight-loss plans offer different benefits with some focusing on tough fitness workouts to help you burn more calories and others helping you attain your weight-loss goals through a rigorous low-fat, low-carb diet.

The extent to which you benefit from a weight-loss plan is largely dependent on your attitude to losing weight, selecting a weight-loss plan that fits into your lifestyle, and the amount of support you receive for the duration of the plan.

As a  weight-loss plan dictates how and how often you both eat and exercise, it gives you a routine that you can stick to, rather relying on your own understanding of healthy living to create a new lifestyle for yourself. With lots of useful tips, fitness videos, dieting tools, and coaching, a weight-loss plan equips you to succeed.

Weight-loss plans help you achieve your goals by:

1. Providing a structured meal plan and giving you specific weekly objectives

2. Giving you tips on fitness workouts and setting weekly exercise targets

3. Expert support either online, over the phone or in person

4. Community support from other people using the same weight-loss plan

5. Helping you keep track of your progress

What Next?

Once you’ve completed your weight-loss plan comes the hardest part of all – maintaining your weight. Hopefully, during the course of your weight-loss plan, you’ve not only acquired some useful diet tools and exercise ideas, but you’ve also met with other people trying to achieve similar goals. Use those tools and support group to help you keep the pounds from piling back on.

Once you’ve completed a weight-loss plan, maintain your optimum weight by:

1. Eating Mindfully

Be conscious of what you’re putting into your body and listen to it. When it says it’s full, it probably is. When it’s craving green vegetables, it probably needs them. Similarly, be conscious of where your food has come from and savor it’s individual and combined flavors. Make eating healthy a happy and rewarding experience.

2. Sleeping Soundly

Lack of sleep and stress can both impact negatively on your bodyweight so maintaining a regular sleeping routine, avoiding caffeine and alcohol, and exercising regularly can all help you relax and get some decent shut-eye.

3. Keeping a food journal

Keeping track of what you eat is a great way of forcing yourself to focus on your diet and assess exactly what you’re eating. Without it, the calories can start creeping up without you noticing so a journal of some other means of tracking your calorie intake can be the difference between maintaining your weight or being forced to start dieting all over again.

4. Exercise

Just because you’ve now achieved your target weight, it doesn’t mean you sit on the sofa all day watching TV. If you suddenly stop exercising after dieting, then you need to reduce your calories even further as the amount you are burning off with have slumped. Exercising for an hour a day is good for your overall health, energy levels, and sleep quality, as well as weight control. Don’t forget, exercise can include gardening, housework and other chores – it doesn’t have to take place in the gym.

5. Stay connected

Just because the weight-loss plan has come to an end, doesn’t mean you can’t keep in touch with people in the same position as you. Sharing your struggles and successes with others, and vice versa can help you remain motivated, even if you experience a setback or two along the way.

6. Portion control

For some, this is the hardest part of life after a diet. Working out how much of each component make up a healthy, well-portioned and flavorsome meal can be tricky and takes a bit of practice. Nonetheless, it’s crucial if you’re going to maintain your optimum weight. If this aspect worries you,  why not consider a meal delivery service where each ingredient comes pre-portioned? After a month or so, you’ll probably feel a lot more confident about how much you should be eating at any given meal.

#1 Nutrisystem

Nutrisystem logo 210x100You may have noticed a lot of sporting celebrities advertising all the possible weight loss benefits of Nutrisystem, but does it really work? “Nutrisystem is a low-calorie weight loss program that offers balanced, easy-to-prepare meals, and controls calories by making the meal portions small,” says Molly Kimball, RD, a sports dietitian at the Ochsner Health System’s Elmwood Fitness Center in New Orleans.

These premade meals are created so that you only intake a certain amount of calories that you need, which is based on your age and sex. This diet focuses on a low GI carbohydrate intake which will control your appetite and break down slower than complex carbohydrates.

Men and women will both be allowed to take in 1,000 calories within the first week, whilst the second will allow men 1,600 calories and women 1,200 per day. You are also encouraged to exercise for 150 minutes per week according to government recommendations. The best thing about this diet loss program is that you don’t have to think hard about what you have to eat as it is all prepared for you.

Some of the benefits of this program include:

  • Conveniently prepared meals
  • You eat six times a day
  • Snacks are allowed

For more information about Nutrisystem make sure to check out our Nutrisystem review.

#2 Diet-to-go

Diet-to-Go_210x100Founded in Virginia in 1991, this was one of the first low-carb meal delivery services within the United States. Now, after many years, their approach to weight loss is basic but effective, “We believe that by eating wholesome meals with proper portion sizes, you can get on track to a healthy lifestyle.”

There are four diet plans to choose from including Balance, Balance-Diabetes, Keto-Carb30, and Vegetarian. No matter which program you choose, you can expect your meals to be designed by dietitians and professional chefs. There is also the added benefit of having your meals delivered, or choosing to pick them up from local pickup points.

The meals rotate in a five-week schedule which means you will get a huge variety from week to week. The meals are flash-frozen, so there is no cooking or preparation involved. All you need to do is stick your meal into the microwave and wait for about five minutes and enjoy.

There are numerous reasons why we love this meal delivery service including:

  • You can skip or cancel any time
  • There are many on-site locations instead of ordering online
  • The meals are very affordable

Want to know more? Check out our in-depth Diet-to-go review.

#3 Watchers – Premium Weight Loss Program

Weight Watchers logo

Weight Watchers has been around for over five decades, and they have recently revamped their diet program to include a stronger emphasis on physical activity as well. The modern-day Weight Watchers is more of a lifestyle overhaul than a strict diet plan, and that’s what makes it so successful. People looking to change their lifestyles permanently benefit from the extensive resources and the support of a large online community.

One of the biggest differentiating factors of Weight Watchers is their famous claim that you can eat whatever you want. A points-based system allows members to select which indulgences they want to spend their calories on, and that’s also one of the secrets to its success. When people feel that they aren’t being restricted, psychologically, it is easier for them to follow a diet plan. This is part of what you’ll get from a Weight Watchers membership:

An extensive mobile app that helps you calculate your caloric intake with a foods database containing close to 300,000 different food items, even popular packaged goods

  • Thousands of recipes for healthier eating
  • Progress tracking tools online or via the mobile weight loss app
  • Cooking and shopping guides
  • Online community support.

Discover what else Weight Watchers has to offer in our in-depth Weight Watchers review.

#4 Jillian Michaels – Personalized Fitness & Meal Plans

Jullian Michaels Logo

Jillian Michaels is one of the most effective weight loss programs for women. Combining a fast weight-loss diet with a tailored weight-loss workout plan, Jillian Michaels hits fat where it really hurts, getting results quickly and consistently.

One note about this diet plan before we dive in. A personal trainer by profession, Jillian Michaels’ weight-loss plans are not for the fainthearted. She’ll take you on a journey, transform your body, and make you reach the fitness goals you’ve been craving…but it won’t come easy. Go into this plan with the determination and awareness that you’ll be working hard, and the results will really amaze you.

Take a look at these Jillian Michael highlights:

  • Access to professional dietitians, chefs, and fitness trainers
  • Excellent mobile app for fitness and diet tracking on the go
  • Choices for different dietary preferences such as omnivores and vegans
  • Menu and meal planning tools and guides
  • Wide range of targeted workouts

Check out our extensive Jillian Michaels’ review to see what else Jillian Michaels’ weight-loss programs for women have to offer.

#5 The South Beach Diet – Nutritional Focused Weight Loss

South Beach Logo

Known as the carb-hating diet, the South Beach diet is a weight-loss food plan centered around low-carbohydrate meals. It’s important to note that the South Beach Diet doesn’t forbid carbohydrates, unlike many fad diets out there, instead, this healthy weight-loss system understands the intrinsic benefits of healthy carbs and builds them into your meal plans to maximize those strengths for optimal health and weight loss.

The diet focuses on fiber and nutrient-rich carbs rather than empty calorie carbs that don’t do you any good. And, if done properly, you can expect to drop 8-13 pounds in the first two weeks! Take a look at some of the program highlights you can look forward to from the South Beach Diet:

  • Three stage weight loss food plan that includes lots of proteins and veggies
  • Dining out guides to help calculate how much that celebratory dinner will cost you in calories
  • Online community support
  • Free trial

Take a closer look in our South Beach Diet review.

#6. – Diversified Exercise & Meal Plans

 diet.Com logo is lauded far and wide for their individualistic approach to dieting. As most legitimate weight-loss plans for women will testify, a cookie-cutter diet is rarely successful as every body type, lifestyle, and individual is different. embraces those differences and tailors its healthy weight-loss plans to fit your specific needs. Here’s how it works:

Fill out the in-depth questionnaire so can get to know your personality, eating habits, activity level, and other important details.

From there, you’ll receive your own diet profile which is essentially a tailor-made weight loss food plan and workout regimen geared towards helping you live healthier and lose weight.

Some of the benefits of this program include:

  • Fitness tracking
  • Comprehensive weight loss exercise plans that target specific problem areas and muscle groups
  • Diet plans tailored for you
  • Weekly menu plans
  • Hundreds of delicious and healthy recipes

Read more about’s tailored weight loss plans in our review.


While any diet that reduces your intake of fat, sugar, and carbohydrates will help you lose weight, a weight-loss plan can offer you much more and give you a much better chance of long-term success. As weight-loss plans have been developed by dietitians, fitness coaches and nutritionists, they are designed to help you lose weight safely and progressively, while altering your attitude to food and encouraging you to adopt healthier habits.

As the weight-loss process varies from person to person, there is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to dieting. The efficacy of any weight-loss program is dependent upon your commitment to the plan and how well it fits into your lifestyle. This is why it’s important to consider your weight-loss goals and lifestyle parameters before launching into a weight-loss program.

Furthermore,  with so many fad diets and magic pills out there, it’s important that, once you’ve chosen and signed up for a weight-loss plan, you stick to it and don’t get distracted by quick-fix solutions.

Achieving your weight-loss goals doesn’t have to be an arduous or expensive process, especially not if you opt for one of the best weight-loss plans for 2020.

Swinburne.Benjamin says:

The most important value of life is the happiness of the soul, not anything outside of it.

Alessia says:

i really find this blog so informative, well lay and simple, am glad i found our website. it help me not only lose weight but also keep it off. i hope it helps someone too. is there any place i can subscribe for your articles?

SK says:

Hi this is a nice article about weight loss.

Susan C says:

Are all of these online? Or are their real-world parts too?

Lydia W. says:

Really glad to see someone is challenging WeightWatchers.I know it’s worked for some people but I’m glad to try these other options.

Erika N says:

Jillian Michaels kicked my ass! Not sure if I can keep it up but I’m down about 5 pounds in a week.

Lisa O. says:

It’s so important to have a plan. eDiets has a bunch to choose from and I like that. Hopefully will stick with it now after a month.

megan says:

Is or Jillian Michaels best for improving aerobic fitness? Dr. says its more important than losing weight for me, but i’d like to do both ideally..

Ali Collinson says:

Love Weight Watchers! 15kg down and 20 left to go!! I’ve been plateauing recently though, so want to switch things up…any suggestions?

G. Hollis says:

Cannot believe the South Beach diet is still being advertised. Had a friend who tried it and she was very sick after. We need to get away from this idea that diet alone will make you lose weight. It’s about >>LIFESTYLE CHANGE<< not a fad food plan.

Olivia says:

I loved watching Jillian Michaels on the Biggest Loser (it was my secret dream to go on that show) but I’m a bit worried it will be too intense? Would you say it’s ok for beginners or should I not even bother?

Elizabeth says:

That Jillian Michaels plan seems so intense.

Serena says:

I wish more of these plans had a free trial option.

Liza says:

What are the prices on all of these plans?

MaryBeth says:

I love that there are so many different diet plans to choose from on here. One for any personality and lifestyle. Thank you!

Denise says:

Weight Watches is the best of these programs from my personal experience. I’ve lost 85 pounds on the program. Their apps and tools are great for helping you plan out your meals. It’s a lifestyle change obviously, but they make it easier.

Molly says:

I used for over a year to help me lose baby weight from almost back to back pregnancies. Had about 40 lbs to lose but their planning tools really helped me on my journey.

Trish says:

I’d stay away from Jillian Michaels. I haven’t used it but she used to be part of The Biggest Loser and it has been well documented that they stuff they used to do on there was dangerous. I don’t know if I want to be associated with anyone or any program associated with that show. Just my 2 cents.

Mark says:

This is great if you’re a woman, but what about the men out there that need to lose weight? Or do we not count? Got any suggestions there or is this a women-centric blog?