Using Optavia Diabetic Plan for Weight Loss

photo of me holding optavia diabetes guide

The Optavia Diabetic Plan is a guide tailored to support people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes in safely losing weight while effectively managing their blood sugar levels through healthy meal options and lifestyle changes.

The Optavia Diabetic Plan is divided into three programs, Optimal Weight 5 and 1, Optimal Weight 5 and 2, and Optimal Weight 4 and 2. Each of these recommends the appropriate number of meals and Fuelings based on factors like age, physical activity, and weight loss goals, as well as the specific type of diabetes.

The answer to the question “Who can benefit from Optavia Diabetes Guide?” is for people with insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, non-insulin-dependent diabetes, and metabolic syndrome-associated diabetes.

The objective of the Optavia Diabetes Plan is to enhance the lifestyle by implementing lifestyle modifications, fostering new eating habits, managing excess weight, and reducing reliance on medications and insulin injections.

Personalized coaching and support from the Optavia community are also included in the plan to assist individuals in achieving these objectives.

It raises several safety-related questions when it comes to Optavia and diabetes, such as whether Optavia can lead to diabetes, the potential interaction between Metformin and Optavia, and how safe Optavia is for people with diabetes, which we gonna cover in this article.

Additionally, there is curiosity about how the Optavia diabetes guide compares to other diabetes programs.

What’s in Optavia Diabetes Guide?

Inside the Optavia Diabetes Guide, you will find the roadmap for people who have insulin-dependent diabetes, non-insulin-dependent diabetes, and pre-diabetes on how to choose the right meal plan.

The guide’s initial recommendation is to contact your healthcare provider before starting the plan to monitor your blood sugar levels. The second step involves selecting the appropriate plan based on your diabetes type, desired weight loss, and blood sugar stability.

What are the next steps in Optavia Diabetes Guide?

The next thing you want to do in the Optavia diabetes guide is to discover the macronutrient contents of your Fuelings, understand the details of lean and green meals along with their recipes, access recipe conversion charts, and utilize the dining out guide.

How much does the Optavia Diabetes Guide cost?

The cost for the diabetes guide is the same as for other Optavia weight loss plans. Optavia recommends different plans for individuals with type 1 and type 2 diabetes.

  • For those with type 1 diabetes, Optavia suggests following the 5 and 2 plan, which costs $395.25 per month.
  • For individuals with type 2 diabetes, Optavia recommends following either the 5 and 1 plan or the 4 and 2 plan, which cost $395.25 and $442.00 per month, respectively.

Does insurance cover the Optavia Diabetes Guide?

Typically, insurance plans provide coverage for the management of chronic diseases such as diabetes.

However, in the case of the Optavia Diabetes Guide, it is unlikely that insurance providers would cover the cost since the program is primarily marketed as a weight loss program rather than a diabetes treatment.

Although weight loss can benefit individuals with diabetes, the Optavia program may not be deemed medically necessary for managing the disease, which could result in the program being classified as an elective or cosmetic program and not covered by insurance.

It is important to keep in mind that insurance coverage can vary widely depending on the specific plan, so it’s always best to confirm with your insurance provider regarding your coverage for a particular program or treatment.

They can provide you with information about your specific plan’s coverage and any out-of-pocket costs that may be applicable.

Which Optavia meal plan is best for Diabetes?

To begin, I think it’s important to know that I wasn’t diagnosed with diabetes or pre-diabetes.

My goal was to choose the correct Optavia plan that helps me to create a healthy lifestyle and can ensure I won’t have to rely on metformin or other medications in the future.

Optavia has three plans:

  • Optimal Weight 5 & 1 Plan
  • Optimal Weight 4 & 2 & 1 Plan
  • Optimal Weight 5 & 2 & 2 Plan

According to the Optavia Diabetes guide:

“All three plans are appropriate for people with diabetes; however, it is essential that you contact your healthcare provider to determine which option is best for you.”

“It is especially important that your blood sugar be monitored carefully throughout the weight-loss process, as your medications may need to be adjusted — sometimes even before you begin.”

The Optimal Weight 5 and 1 Plan

Optavia 5 and 1 plan is a diet that consists of eating 6 small meals per day that help to promote a gentle, but efficient fat-burning state.

The 5 Fuelings and one lean and green meal.

Here’s a photo of my favorite Fuelings, Optavia caramel macchiato shake mix.

photo of my fuelings

Each sachet consists of 15 grams of balanced carbohydrates, 11 grams of proteins, and a total of 100 calories.

The daily calories in the 5 and 1 plan are estimated between 800 to 1,000.

One lean and green meal has to be done by yourself, ideally with plenty of high-protein meals as well as lots of green vegetables.

According to Optavia Diabetes Guide:

“The 5 and 1 plan is best suited for people with type 2 diabetes, people with pre-diabetes, and people who have less than 100 lbs to lose.”

“Optavia 5 and 1 plan is not suitable for people with type 1 diabetes who are carefully monitored by their healthcare provider or diabetes specialist.”

Optavia does not provide any reasons or arguments for the aforementioned recommendations.

They do not explain why people who have more than 100 pounds to lose should not start their 5 and 1 plan.

For me, the 5 and 1 plan was a good fit because my primary goal was to reduce calorie intake and lose weight faster.

I didn’t have to lose 100 pounds.

My weight loss goal was to drop 30-40 pounds and to learn how to maintain my results for longer.

Optimal Weight 4 and 2 and 1 Plan

Optavia 4 and 2 and 1 plan is the program that my dad went on.

He was over 65, had diabetes type 2, and needed to lose close to 20 pounds.

(This is not the plan that I did.)

Here’s a photo of my dad’s essential optimal kit order that came in last few weeks ago.

photo of my dad optavia package

This package includes 20 boxes of Optavia fuelings.

Optavia 4 and 2 and 1 plan is a diet that consists of eating 4 small fuelings together with two lean and green meals and one healthy snack.

The daily calories are estimated between 1,000 to 1,300.

This plan is suitable for people who want to eat meals from all food groups like fruits, dairy, and starches.

The 4 and 2 and 1 plan is also suitable for people who:

  • Have type 1 diabetes and are closely monitored by your healthcare provider.
  • Are 65 years or older and not regularly active.
  • Have type 2 diabetes and less than 15 pounds to lose.

Optimal Weight 5 and 2 and 2 Plan

Optavia 5 and 2 and 2 plan consists of eating 7 small meals a day.

It is divided into 5 fuelings, 2 lean and green meals, and 2 healthy snacks.

The daily calories are estimated between 1,300 to 1,500.

According to Optavia Diabetes Guide:

“Optavia 5 and 2 and 2 plan is ideal for people who have type 1 diabetes and are closely monitored by your healthcare provider.”

“This plan is also suitable if you have type 2 diabetes and over 100 pounds to lose. You are 65 years or older and not regularly active.”

How does Optavia Diabetes Guide differ from other weight loss programs?

On the topic of how the Optavia diabetes guide compares to other weight loss programs, it is important to note that it aligns with the American Diabetes Association’s recommendations for lifestyle improvements.

This includes dietary changes such as implementing a low-calorie and low-fat diet and adjusting caloric intake to achieve a weight loss of 5 to 10% within a year.

However, it does not address other lifestyle changes such as engaging in two and a half hours of moderate-intensity physical activity per week or one hour and 15 minutes of high-intensity exercise, or utilizing stress management techniques like mindfulness as a means of controlling stress-related blood sugar changes.

What lifestyle changes does Optavia Diabetes Guide suggest?

The main focus of the Optavia Diabetes Guide is on dietary modifications, which include consuming portion-controlled snacks every 2-3 hours, eliminating grains, bread, pasta, and fruits from the meal plan, and prioritizing high protein and low carb vegetables in lean and green meals.

According to the Optavia Diabetes guide:

“If you’re looking for a way to control your diabetes and improve your overall health, OPTAVIA may be a good fit for you. Our program is designed to help you create healthy habits that will last a lifetime.”

“We believe that meal planning is an essential part of managing diabetes, so our plans focus on limiting calories while maintaining consistent, healthy blood sugar levels.”

According to American Diabetes Association, “When you’re managing diabetes and prediabetes, your eating plan is a powerful tool.”

The ADA states that “the food you eat and your daily activity are important ways you can do to manage diabetes.”

What are the best diet programs for diabetics according to research?

According to the Nutrition Consensus Report published by American Diabetes Association in May 2019, “There is not an ideal percentage of calories from carbohydrates, protein, and fat for all people with or at risk for diabetes.”

The ADA states:

“Calorie and macronutrient ratios should be based on each person individually while taking into consideration their current eating patterns, preferences, and metabolic goals.”

As much as I’m happy with my weight loss results, I cannot say with full confidence that Optavia plans are suited for all people with diabetes.

Unless you tried to modify your Optavia meal plan, you’re probably eating the same way as everyone else on their program.

This means you may have two people with completely different weight, age, and eating preferences, yet, still doing the same weight loss plan.

According to ADA:

“When counseling people with diabetes, a key strategy to achieve glycemic targets should include an assessment of current dietary intake followed by individualized guidance on self-monitoring carbohydrate intake.”

Optavia does include information about glycemic index in their newsletter. They also do a great job of choosing the right type of carbohydrates with a low glycemic index.

From what I’ve seen, Optavia doesn’t provide individualized eating assessments and recommends their meal plans as a cookie-cutter approach.

They do provide coaching guidance, however, their coaches do not have the credentials to work with people who have serious medical conditions like type 1 and 2 diabetes.

“This process helps to optimize meal timing and food choices and to guide medication and physical activity recommendations.”

Here, ADA suggests that the purpose of assessment is to design individualized meal plans and meal timing.

Neither I nor my dad received any individualized suggestions on meal timing and meal plans.

As I’ve mentioned earlier, all Optavia plans have the same diet plan, for everyone.

According to ADA:

“Reducing overall carbohydrate intake for individuals with diabetes has demonstrated the most evidence for improving glycemia and may be applied in a variety of eating patterns that meet individual needs and preferences.”

I must admit that Optavia is doing a good job of balancing carbohydrate intake.

I was following their 5 and 1 plan to the t. Every day I was eating around 80 to 100g of carbohydrates.

According to the Johns Hopkins Patient Guide To Diabetes, “the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for carbs is 130 grams per day. This number is based on the amount of carbohydrate that is required to provide the brain with adequate glucose.”

When it comes to eating carbs on Optavia, I was really happy and satisfied.

Their daily carb intake is in line with current guidelines and is half of the typical American diet, which is more than 250 grams of carbs per day, according to Johns Hopkins.

What is the alternative to the Optavia diabetes plan?

According to American Diabetes Association, there are a few effective dietary methods that may help to lower the need for glucose-lowering medications.

Mediterranean diet

The Mediterranean diet is no fad diet – it’s a way of eating that has been around for centuries.

Current research has shown that the Mediterranean diet can have numerous health benefits.

For instance, the Mediterranean diet can help to regulate blood sugar levels, reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke, and even boost cognitive function.

So if you’re looking for a healthy Optavia diabetes plan alternative, the Mediterranean diet is definitely worth considering.

Vegetarian or vegan diet

Although Optavia does have a vegetarian plan for meatless eaters, keep in mind that it is not the same as a traditional plant-based diet.

A vegetarian or vegan diet can have many benefits.

The article published in the Cardiovascular Diagnosis and Therapy Journal has shown that these diets can help to lower blood sugar levels and improve insulin sensitivity, which are both important factors in maintaining good health.

Additionally, a vegetarian or vegan diet may also aid in weight loss.

This is because these diets tend to be lower in calories and fat than a meat-based diet, making them an excellent choice for those looking to slim down.

Low-Fat diet

In the Look AHEAD (Action for Health in Diabetes) trial, people who were using meal replacements with a low-fat content achieved moderate success compared with the control condition eating plan.

The authors of the randomized control trial explain that a low-fat diet can have a number of benefits, including weight loss and improved blood sugar control.

What’s more, a low-fat diet is also associated with reduced CVD risk factors in people with type 2 diabetes.

Can Optavia Cause Diabetes?

From the calorie and macronutrient standpoint, the Optavia diet is unlikely to cause diabetes. It has low carb and low-fat content, simultaneously its got high fiber and high proteins.

According to the article published in Diabetes UK, “A diet high in fat, calories, and cholesterol can lead to obesity, which is a major risk factor for diabetes”.

When asking the question is Optavia safe for diabetics, we can point to the 2017 study published in Nutrition & Diabetes Journal which found that Optavia is safe and effective for individuals with diabetes, highlighting its potential as a suitable option for weight loss and diabetes management.

However, calories and fat/sugar content are not the only causes of diabetes. You need to take into consideration that people have different eating habits.

According to Diabetes UK, “yo-yo dieting has been linked to increases in insulin resistance, a condition that occurs when your body can’t efficiently use the insulin it naturally produces.”

In other words, eating too few calories a day may cause people to binge or yo-yo diet, which may increase the chances of diabetes.

(So yo-yo dieting may actually be the biggest problem.)

Can people with diabetes do Optavia on their own?

It is possible to do Optavia without a coach, as evidenced by numerous success stories on Facebook and Reddit from individuals with diabetes who have followed the program independently.

Nevertheless, Optavia does not offer any resources for those who wish to pursue the program without the aid of a coach or consultant.

Before starting the program, do some research and learn about the Optavia program, its principles, and guidelines. Familiarize yourself with the program’s recommended meals, portion sizes, and nutritional values.

It’s important to speak with a healthcare provider, such as a registered dietitian or endocrinologist, to ensure that the program is appropriate for your specific diabetes management needs.

Plan your meals ahead of time and create a weekly or monthly meal plan. Include a variety of foods that are low in sugar, carbs, and calories, but high in protein and fiber.

Regular exercise is important in managing diabetes. Incorporate physical activity into your routine, such as taking daily walks, doing yoga, or weightlifting. Be sure to consult with your healthcare provider before starting a new exercise regimen.

Join online communities, such as Facebook groups or Reddit forums, where you can connect with others who have successfully followed the Optavia program on their own. You can also reach out to a healthcare provider or a diabetes support group for additional support and guidance.


Talk with your healthcare provider before starting an Optavia weight loss program. This is especially important if you are taking any medications or dietary supplements, including Coumadin (Warfarin), lithium , diuretics, and those for diabetes high blood pressure thyroid conditions. You should not participate in any Optavia program until you are cleared by your healthcare provider if have had a serious illness.

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