Optavia Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan: In-Depth Review and Guide

The Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan is a structured weight management program developed by Optavia. It combines the use of meal replacements like shakes and bars with the adoption of healthy habits, as outlined in Dr. Wayne Scott Andersen’s ‘Dr. A’s Habits of Health Transformational System.’

The Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan involves consuming five Optavia meal replacements and one self-prepared meal daily, aiming to facilitate weight loss while encouraging lifestyle changes for long-term health and well-being. This approach is part of a six-step process designed to guide participants towards a healthier weight, improved eating habits, increased physical activity, stress reduction, and overall health optimization, contributing to a potential for a longer and healthier life.

The main benefit of the Optavia 5 and 1 plan is weight loss. A 2019 study published in the Obesity Reviews Journal, led by Christopher Coleman, Principal Scientist at Medifast, Inc., revealed that the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 program, when combined with telephone coaching for 16 weeks, resulted in an impressive 5.7% reduction in body weight. This was significantly better than the self-directed control group, demonstrating the program’s effectiveness for weight loss and other health measures.

The main drawback of the Optavia 5 and 1 diet, besides its high monthly cost, is the strict requirement of 800-1000 daily calories. To follow this plan, you’ll have 5 Optavia Fuelings and one Lean and Green home-cooked meal every day, 7 days a week until you reach your goal weight and transition to the Optavia 3 and 3 plan.

If the Optavia 5&1 plan monthly cost of $511.50 seems too high, remember that Optimal Weight 5 and 1 isn’t the only weight loss diet option. There are similar meal replacement weight loss programs like Wonderlism, Skinny Box, Nutrisystem, Yes You Can, Ideal Protein, and more. These alternatives also restrict calories, provide meals, and often cost significantly less.

Table of Contents

What is the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan?

The Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan, formerly known as Take Shape For Life, is the most popular weight loss program offered by Optavia Diet. It was created by Dr. William Vitale, a medical doctor, in 1980. Initially designed as a medically supervised weight loss program, it has received recommendations from numerous healthcare providers.

The Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan typically lasts between 3 to 6 months, or until you achieve your desired weight loss. This plan emphasizes portion control and aims to help you lose 12 pounds in 12 weeks with the support of an Optavia Independent coach.

I’ve been on the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 program for 12 months. It hasn’t been easy because the portion sizes of the Optavia Fuelings are small (bars are 32 grams per serving), which is similar in size to one-third of your typical protein bar. While they were tasty, it was challenging to feel satisfied and full, so I often felt hungry throughout the day.

What are the components of The Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan?

The Optimal Weight 5 & 1 Plan, as detailed in Dr. Wayne Scott Andersen’s book “Habits of Health,” encompasses key components for holistic well-being. These include maintaining a healthy weight, adopting nutritious eating and hydration habits, engaging in regular physical activity, ensuring adequate sleep, creating a health-promoting environment, and fostering a positive mental outlook.

what are the habits of health optavia
  • Healthy eating and hydration. The Optimal Weight 5 and 1 plan provides a list of approved diet foods from the majority of food groups. The Optavia diet food list includes a variety of vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy fats in meals. It also emphasizes the importance of staying properly hydrated by drinking an adequate amount of water throughout the day.
  • Healthy motion: The Optavia 5 and 1 plan encourages regular physical activity and incorporating movement into daily routines. In a study by Ozlem Celik from Acibadem University School of Medicine, it was found that individuals who engaged in high levels of exercise (225-420 min/week of moderate-intensity exercise) had better weight maintenance compared to those who engaged in lower levels (<150 min/week) of exercise.
  • Healthy weight management. This 5 and 1 habit focuses on maintaining healthy body weight through portion control, balanced nutrition, and regular monitoring of weight and progress.
  • Healthy sleep: This micro habit underscores the importance of quality sleep for overall well-being. It involves establishing a consistent sleep routine during 5 and 1 weight loss, as well as creating a sleep-friendly environment, and prioritizing sufficient hours of restful sleep each night. According to a 2022 study published by Evangelia Papatriantafyllou from International Hellenic University, sleep deprivation can lead to excessive snacking on high-fat and high-carbohydrate foods, which can hinder weight loss efforts.
  • Healthy surroundings. The Optimal Weight 5 and 1 guide suggests creating an environment that supports healthy choices. It involves organizing living spaces to promote physical activity, keeping healthy food options readily available, and minimizing exposure to unhealthy triggers.
  • Healthy mind. This micro habit emphasizes mental well-being and self-care. It involves practices such as mindfulness, stress management, positive thinking, and engaging in activities that promote mental relaxation and rejuvenation.

The Optavia 5&1 plan advocates integrating these “micro-habits” into daily life for overall health and wellness. On top of the products and habits, the Optavia coaches also guide developing healthy habits, such as preparing healthy meals and selecting healthy snacks.

How does the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan work?

The Optimal Weight 5 and 1 plan works by creating a calorie deficit and promoting a state of gentle fat burning within the body. This plan includes munching on Optavia Fuelings, which are portion-controlled snacks formulated to have comparable nutritional values, every 120-180 minutes.

By following the 5 and 1 plan, the recommended energy intake is under 1,000 calories per day, which puts the body into a negative energy balance. For nursing mothers, the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan recommends a daily intake of 1,500 to 1,800 calories, including three Optavia Fuelings, to support the mother’s and baby’s nutritional needs. If a weight loss of more than one to two pounds per week is observed, or there’s a decrease in milk supply, it advises shifting to the higher 1,800-calorie plan.

For individuals with gout, the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan emphasizes gradual weight loss with a focus on low or moderate purine food choices. The plan, offering around 1,200 calories per day, suggests limiting animal protein to no more than six ounces per day and includes two servings of low-fat or fat-free dairy products.

How does the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan work for first-time buyers?

For first-time buyers, the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan starts with the Essential Kit, which includes a comprehensive guidebook, a blender bottle, and 154 servings of essential Optavia Fuelings, along with helpful dining guides and bonus recipes. This initial package is designed to introduce newcomers to the diet’s structure and provide the necessary tools for starting their weight loss journey.

What are the Health Benefits of the Optimal Weight 5 & 1 plan?

The health benefits of the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 plan, as outlined in a 2019 study conducted by Linda M. Arterburn titled “Randomized controlled trial assessing two commercial weight loss programs in adults with overweight or obesity,” are presented below.

what are the advantages of optimal weight 5 and 1 plan
  • Clinically Relevant Weight Loss. The randomized controlled trial found that participants in the Optavia and Medifast groups had significantly greater reductions in body weight, fat, and abdominal fat mass than the control group. Half of the participants in these groups lost at least 5% of their baseline weight.
  • Improved Body Composition. Participants in the Optavia and Medifast groups lost more fat mass than the control group, representing 75% and 87.1% of body mass lost. Both groups also had a greater decline in abdominal visceral fat than the control group.
  • Better Quality of Life. Participants in all three groups experienced improvements in QOL, but the Optavia and Medifast groups had a significant correlation between the number of coaching contacts and QOL scores.
  • Potential Health Benefits. The study found a significant decrease in hsCRP concentration in the Optavia group compared to the control group. High levels of hsCRP can be a marker of inflammation, which is associated with several health problems.
  • Behavioral Support. The Optavia and Medifast programs provide participants with educational materials and behavioral support, including coaching calls and access to a nutrition support team. The study found that completing more coaching calls and using more meal replacements correlated with greater weight loss.

What are The Health Risks of the Optimal Weight 5 & 1 Plan?

The Optimal Weight 5 & 1 Plan, while effective for weight loss, poses potential health risks, including nutrient deficiencies, gallstones, and altered metabolism, particularly due to its low-calorie nature.

  1. Nutrient Deficiencies: The plan’s heavy reliance on meal replacements may lead to insufficient intake of essential nutrients, potentially causing health issues related to deficiencies.
  2. Gallstones: Rapid weight loss associated with very low-calorie diets can increase the risk of gallstone formation.
  3. Altered Metabolism: Long-term adherence to such low-calorie intake can slow down metabolism, making it harder to maintain weight loss or lose additional weight in the future.
  4. Muscle Loss: Due to lower protein intake compared to standard diets, there’s a risk of losing muscle mass along with fat.
  5. Digestive Issues: A change in diet can lead to digestive problems such as constipation or diarrhea, especially in the initial phases.
  6. Fatigue and Dizziness: The significant reduction in calorie intake may cause fatigue, dizziness, and general weakness, impacting daily activities.

Who is the Optavia Diet 5 and 1 plan suitable for?

The Optavia Diet 5 and 1 plan is suitable for healthy adults aiming for weight loss, who don’t need a flexible meal plan, have more than 15 pounds to lose, exercise less than 45 minutes per day, are not regularly active, and are comfortable with a structured diet plan and a higher budget, as it can be costlier than other diet options.

The Optavia 5 and 1 plan is ideal for individuals who are disciplined in following a meal replacement strategy and appreciate the convenience of pre-packaged meals. However, it may not be the best choice for those with specific dietary restrictions or medical conditions, individuals seeking a more diverse and flexible eating plan, or those who prefer preparing their meals for a more sustainable lifestyle change.

What are the common mistakes people make when starting the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 plan?

One common mistake people make when starting the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan is underestimating the costs. Initially, the plan costs $396.50 for the first month, and then it goes up to $511.50 per month after the first order.

Many also struggle with the 5&1 plan’s restrictive nature, finding it challenging to strictly adhere to the prescribed eating schedule and limited food options. Additionally, some do not find the 5 and 1 plan sustainable in the long term, as it heavily relies on meal replacements.

How to start the Optavia 5 and 1 plan?

To start the Optavia 5 and 1 plan, follow the steps below.

  1. Refer to the comprehensive 5 and 1 Optavia Guide for in-depth information on healthy habits, meal plans, and calorie guidance.
  2. Inform yourself about the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 plan cost, including meal replacements and any additional groceries.
  3. Explore Optimal Weight 5 and 1 plan reviews and testimonials from those who have followed the plan to gain insight into their experiences and results.
  4. Discover a variety of Optavia 5 and 1 meals tailored to fit the Optavia Diet, ensuring balanced nutrition and variety.
  5. Learn about Optavia 5 and 1 fueling substitutes that can be used as alternatives while following the Optavia Diet.
  6. Familiarize yourself with the approved Optavia 5 and 1 food list for the 5&1 plan, which includes all the permitted foods and ingredients.
  7. Check the Optavia 5 and 1 condiment list of allowed sauces, salad dressings, and spices, to enhance your meals while adhering to the plan guidelines.
  8. Identify Optavia 5 and 1 snacks that fit within the framework of the Optavia Diet, offering satisfying and healthy choices.
  9. Experiment with a range of Optavia Lean and Green Recipes 5&1.

How much does the Optimal Weight 5 & 1 Plan cost?

The Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan typically costs $511.50, averaging around $17.05 per day, but this doesn’t include taxes or shipping. For non-Premier members, shipping starts at $8.99 and varies with the order size, while Premier members pay a $7 flat rate for orders under $300 or enjoy free shipping for orders above $300. Therefore, the overall Optavia Diet Cost for Premier members can be more economical, especially with larger orders that qualify for free shipping.

When you purchase the Optimal Weight 5 & 1 plan, it includes the Essential Optimal Kit and is priced slightly higher than the WonderSlim CORE plan by $138.25 and the Skinny Box diet by $280.05.

How do customers review the Optimal Weight 5 & 1 Plan?

The Optimal Weight 5 & 1 Plan from Optavia has garnered mixed reviews, with some customers achieving weight loss success while others report dissatisfaction. Customers have commonly expressed concerns regarding customer service, unexpected side effects, delivery issues, and challenging refund policies.

Negative experiences include being mistakenly charged after cancellation, misleading health claims, and poor interactions with customer service representatives, leading to an overall customer review score of 1.55 out of 5 on the Better Business Bureau, where Optavia is not accredited.

What are the Optimal Weight 5 & 1 Meals?

The Optimal Weight 5 & 1 Meals are a component of the Optavia diet, consisting of Lean and Green meals prepared by you at home. These meals, typically consumed for lunch or dinner, are designed to provide 250-400 calories, with a balanced macronutrient composition of approximately 25 grams of protein, 10-20 grams of fats, and 15-20 grams of carbohydrates.

It is recommended to have one Optimal Weight 5 and 1 meal per day, which includes a serving of lean proteins (5-7 ounces), three servings of vegetables, zero to two servings of healthy fats, three servings of condiments, and a calorie-free beverage. This picture shows a typical 5 and 1 meal.

photo of optimal weight 5 and 1 lean and green meal

This sample dish consists of 7 ounces of tilapia, 6 prawns, and 3 servings of vegetables which include asparagus and broccoli.

What are the Optimal Weight 5 & 1 Plan Fuelings?

The Optimal Weight 5 & 1 Plan Fuelings refer to a variety of ready-to-eat snacks, including shakes, protein bars, coffees, desserts, puddings, and hearty options. These snacks are unified in their calorie content, typically providing around 100-110 calories per serving.

Despite the low-calorie count, the Optimal Weight 5 & 1 Plan Fuelings are rich in essential nutrients, including 24 vitamins and minerals. Each Fueling generally contains 11-15 grams of protein, 10-15 grams of carbs, and 4-5 grams of fat. Here’s the photo of one of the 5 and 1 Fuelings – Sour Cream and Chive Smashed Potatoes.

photo of the optimal weight 5 and 1 plan fueling - mashed potato

While Optavia Fuelings don’t have artificial sweeteners, some of their ingredients are ‘bioengineered,’ meaning they’ve been genetically modified in some way. Unlike other protein snacks and meal replacements, you can’t purchase Optavia’s 5 and 1 Fuelings in stores or directly from the Optavia website without signing up for their program. This is why many people have started searching for alternatives.

What are the Optavia 5 and 1 Fuelings Substitutes?

Optavia 5 and 1 Fuelings substitutes include similar low-calorie, nutrient-dense food options like protein shakes and meal replacement bars that align with the plan’s nutritional guidelines. Key factors for Optavia Fueling substitutes are high protein content, low carbohydrates, and minimal added sugars, ensuring they mirror the balance found in Optavia Fuelings.

What Foods can you eat on the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 plan?

On the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 plan, you can eat lean proteins like chicken and fish, non-starchy vegetables such as spinach and kale, and healthy fats including olive oil and nuts.

  1. Lean Proteins: Chicken, Turkey, Fish (halibut, trout, salmon), Eggs, Lean beef, Game meats, Lamb, Pork tenderloin, 85% lean Ground meat, Tofu.
  2. Non-Starchy Vegetables: Peppers, Tomatoes, Spinach, Kale, Mushrooms, Cauliflower, Cucumbers, Zucchini.
  3. Healthy Fats: Olive oil, Almonds, Walnuts, Avocado, Canola and Flaxseed oils, low carb salad dressings, Olives, Reduced fat margarine.

What Foods should be avoided on the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 plan?

On the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 plan, you should avoid fried foods, refined grains, fruits, saturated fats, alcohol, and sugary drinks.

  1. Fried Foods: Meats, Fish, Shellfish, Vegetables, Sweets.
  2. Refined Grains: White bread, Pasta, Biscuits, Pancakes, Flour tortillas, Crackers.
  3. Fruits: All types are restricted on the plan.
  4. Saturated Fats: Butter, Coconut oil, Solid shortening, Full-fat dairy products.
  5. Alcohol: All alcoholic beverages are to be limited.
  6. Sugary Drinks: Soda, Fruit juice, Sports drinks, Energy drinks, Sweet tea. Only water and calorie-free beverages are allowed.

How much water should you drink on the Optimal Weight 5 & 1 Plan?

On the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 plan, Optavia advises drinking 64 ounces of water per day. However, this recommendation can vary based on individual factors like age, sex, and health status, with general guidelines suggesting around 3,000 ml (about 101 ounces) of total daily fluid intake for men and 2,200 ml (about 74 ounces) for women.

What are the best recipes for the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 plan?

For the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 plan, choosing recipes that are low in carbs and high in lean protein and vegetables is key.

  • Grilled Lemon Herb Chicken Salad: Grilled chicken breast, mixed greens, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, lemon juice, herbs, and a drizzle of olive oil.
  • Baked Salmon with Steamed Broccoli: Salmon fillets, broccoli florets, garlic, lemon, and a touch of olive oil.
  • Stir-Fried Tofu and Vegetables: Firm tofu, bell peppers, spinach, mushrooms, onions, garlic, and low-sodium soy sauce.

What is the sample meal plan for the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 plan?

A sample meal plan for the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 plan is designed to be nutritionally balanced, focusing on five Optavia Fueling and one lean and green meal made of lean proteins, non-starchy vegetables, and healthy fats.

  1. Breakfast: 1 Optavia Bar.
  2. Mid-morning Snack: 1 Optavia Shake.
  3. Lunch: 5-7 ounces of grilled chicken or turkey with 3 servings of steamed broccoli and spinach.
  4. Afternoon Snack: 1 Optavia Fueling.
  5. Dinner: 1 Optavia Shake.
  6. Evening Snack: 1 Optavia Bar.

What is the Average Weight Loss on the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan?

The average weight loss on Optavia typically ranges from 1-2 pounds (0.45-0.91 kilograms) per week, aligning with standard guidelines for safe and sustainable weight reduction. Over three months, participants might expect to lose approximately 12-24 pounds (5.4-10.8 kilograms) in total.

However, many experts agree that the initial weight loss in the first week can fluctuate significantly among individuals due to factors such as metabolism, starting weight, diet adherence, physical activity, and body composition. Some may even experience a quicker drop in weight at the outset.

What do experts have to say about the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan?

Experts generally view the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan as an effective tool for weight loss, primarily due to its structured approach and focus on portion control. The plan’s design, which involves consuming five Optavia Fuelings and one Lean and Green meal daily, aims for a caloric intake of 800-1,000 calories per day. This creates a calorie deficit, which is a key factor in weight loss.

Several studies support the efficacy of the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan. For instance, a 2019 study in the Obesity Reviews Journal by Christopher Coleman of Medifast, Inc., showed significant weight loss and reductions in body fat, waist, and hip measurements among participants. Another 2010 study by Teodora Handjieva-Darlenska from the Medical University of Sofia found that an 800-calorie low-calorie diet led to substantial weight loss in overweight and obese individuals.

However, adherence to such a restrictive diet can be challenging. The plan’s low-calorie count might not be sustainable for everyone in the long term and could lead to potential side effects. It’s also important to transition carefully to a maintenance plan to ensure lasting results and avoid rapid weight regain. While effective for weight loss, individuals must consider their personal health needs and lifestyle before starting any structured diet plan.

Is the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 plan a well-structured diet plan?

Yes, the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 plan is a structured diet plan that provides clear guidelines and meal replacements for short-term weight loss. However, its long-term effectiveness and nutritional diversity are questionable, and its ties to multi-level marketing (MLM) strategies can overshadow its dietary focus.

Is the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan associated with multi-level marketing?

Yes, the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan is part of Optavia, a program that operates using MLM strategies. In this setup, independent coaches sell Optavia products and earn commissions, thereby promoting the Optavia MLM structure. This MLM aspect is a key reason why some individuals opt to follow the Optavia program independently, without involving the network of coaches.

How to do Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan on your own?

To do Optimal Weight 5 and 1 on your own, you can use alternative shakes, find cheaper alternatives to Optavia fuelings, substitute Optavia bars with cheaper options, make your own Optavia bars, and choose lean meats for Lean and green meals. For more options, explore other diets similar to Optavia.

What diets are similar to the Optimal Weight 5 and 1 plan?

Diets similar to Optavia include Wonderlism, Skinny Box, Nutrisystem, Yes You Can, and Ideal Protein, each offering structured meal plans and often incorporating meal replacements. If you’re on a flexible budget and seeking less stringent options within Optavia, the Optimal Weight 4 and 2 Plan is a viable alternative.

What is the difference between the Optavia 5 and 1 vs Optavia 4 and 2 plan?

The main difference between Optavia’s 5 and 1 and 4 and 2 plans lies in the daily meal structure and calorie intake. The 5 and 1 plan consists of five Optavia Fuelings and one lean and green meal per day, targeting a lower calorie intake for more rapid weight loss. In contrast, the Optavia 4 and 2 plan includes four Optavia Fuelings and two lean and green meals, offering slightly more calories and greater dietary variety.

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