Allows products to be returned
Has a nutritionist available to speak with about best plan for you
Proven to be clinically safe and effective
Requires a 30-day order
Food choices are made for you
Regular, weekly grocery store runs are required for daily meals
The Bottom Line
If you don’t mind your kit choices being made for you, Medifast meal replacement may be a good option. You will still be required to cook to ensure you get all the nutrients you need on a daily basis.
It seems counter-intuitive that eating more often is more effective at losing weight. But it’s a proven method and it’s the approach that Medifast takes. The meal replacement company is a nutritionally balanced and clinically proven weight loss program. It’s fairly convenient and easy to follow. Emphasis is put on portion control and between five and six regular eating times over the course of the day.
Medifast meals come in individual portions that are low glycemic, low calorie and low fat, but are full of vitamins and minerals your body needs. Medifast plans have been proven to be clinically safe and there’s no doubt with the low and strict caloric intact that it is effective. Researchers and studies published in Nutritional Journal, Diabetes Educator and The Open Nutrition Journal all approve of the Medifast strategy.
History and Popularity
The meal delivery service known as Medifast was founded in 1980 by Doctor William Vitale. The meal delivery products promising weight loss and healthy nutrition were originally sold directly to doctors who prescribed them to patients needing to lose weight. Twenty years later, the company redesigned its program so medical supervision wasn’t necessary. Medifast then marketed directly to consumers and started selling its weight loss meals and products to anyone who wanted to try them.
It became a popular option because it produced results and was a safe way to get the pounds off. Medifast claims after a few days of using the program your body reaches a mild fat-burning state allowing you to quickly lose fat while still preserving muscle tissue.
How to Order
Medifast meals and products can be ordered directly from the company’s website. The website will ask you a short series of questions to help figure out the plan that is best for you. You’ll be asked your age, gender, how often you exercise and how much weight you want to lose. Because it considers itself a weight loss program, it encourages anyone thinking about joining the program to consult with a doctor first.
There are three plans to choose from: Medifast Go!, Medifast Flex and Thrive by Medifast Healthy Living Plan.
To get started, you will have to pick a plan. There are three to choose from: Medifast Go!, Medifast Flex and Thrive by Medifast Healthy Living Plan, which is a maintenance plan. The food contained in each kit is already chosen for you. Once you’ve chosen your plan, you simply click on the “order now” button. You’ll then be prompted to set up an account. Once that’s taken care of, you can check out and place your order.
If you aren’t comfortable with ordering online, Medifast does encourage you to call and place your order at 1-877-707-3208.
Selecting Your Plan
Most of the Medifast kits are low glycemic, low calorie and low fat. There are some variations of the kits for special dietary needs including diabetes, gluten free, and vegetarian. Medifast warns against using the products if you have a serious acute or chronic illness like cancer, liver, or kidney disease or have had a heart attack.
Your current exercise routine will determine which senior plan is recommended for you.
Your current exercise routine will determine which senior plan is recommended for you. If you exercise 30 minutes every day, Medifast suggests the 5 & 1 Plan–which is five Medifast meals and one Lean and Green meal. If you aren’t exercising, Medifast recommends its 4 & 2 & 1 Plan–which is four Medifast meals, two Lean and Green Meals and one healthy snack. If you aren’t exercising and have 100 pounds or more to lose or have chronic or serious health issues, there’s a separate recommendation for that. That plan is a 5 & 2 & 2 plan–which is five Medifast meals, two Lean and Green meals and two healthy snacks.
Types of Meals
You will receive a wide variety of meal replacements from Medifast. They can all be used interchangeably, so if you want a Medifast shake for breakfast instead of for your mid-afternoon meal, you can do that.
Most meal replacements come prepared and prepackaged. For the ones that need some prep done, you will only have to add water and follow the instructions on the package. For the things that have to be mixed with water, you will receive a blender bottle with your first order.
Medifast has more than 70 different meal replacements and includes everything from maple and brown sugar oatmeal to oatmeal raisin crunch bars to chicken flavored noodle soup. There are also some shake options, which come in strawberry, French vanilla and chocolate flavors.
In addition to the food you receive, you will also get a food journal where you can keep up with what you’re eating and when. Medifast understands that you won’t always be home, so it provides a ‘Dining Out Guide’ to help you make Medifast approved choices when eating out in restaurants.
You will also get a list of approved food that you can prepare for your Lean & Green meal. You will be allowed five to seven ounces of lean protein and three servings of non-starchy vegetables, as well as two servings of healthy fats.
You can have condiments, sauces, dressings, and one snack per day, but alcohol is off limits. Snack choices include celery, Jell-O, a Popsicle, pickles, gum or mints, and a half an ounce of either walnuts, pistachios or almonds.
With Medifast, you will eat five or six times a day, depending on the kit you choose. There are sample menus and suggestions in the guide for seniors. For example, in the 5 & 1 Plan, a sample day might include Medifast eggs for breakfast, a Medifast shake for a mid-morning meal, Medifast soup for lunch, and a Medifast crunch bar in the middle of the afternoon. For dinner, you would have six ounces of grilled chicken breast, one and a half cups of cooked zucchini and use one teaspoon of olive oil to cook it in. It’s important to note, the dinner meal will be something you shop for at the grocery and prepare yourself. In the evening, you would have a Medifast pudding.
It’s important to note, the dinner meal will be something you shop for at the grocery and prepare yourself.
Most of the meals are determined for you in the kit, but the Lean and Green meals for the plans require a weekly trip to the grocery store and a daily cooking routine. You will have to factor the grocery store costs in with the cost of your Medifast plan to stay within your budget.
More to Know
Medifast helps you lose weight because it has severe calorie restrictions. With the Medifast 5 & 1 Plan, you will only be consuming 800 to 1,000 calories a day. You will have to make lasting lifestyle changes in order for it to work long-term.
Medifast replacements are enriched with nutrients to ensure there isn’t a deficiency.
Medifast replacements are enriched with nutrients to ensure there isn’t a deficiency. But it does cut out certain food groups, like dairy. So, you will have to make sure you are getting the recommended daily calcium and vitamin D intake from other sources to avoid brittle bones, osteoporosis or other health problems.
Overall, the meal replacements are considered to be tasty. Some of the powders you have to mix with water can have a mineral taste to them, but that will go away as you get used to the product.
The biggest adjustment may be the drastic cut in calories if you were eating a lot before beginning the program.
For the 30-day Medifast Go kit, it will cost you $329 or nearly $11 a day, but shipping is free. That’s the new customer rate. The returning customer price on the 30-day kit is $429, which is roughly $14 a day.
The Medifast Flex plan is a little cheaper. The new customer rate is $299, which is just under $10 a day. The returning customer price is a little more than $395, which ends up being around $13 a day.
Medifast will renew your order every 30 days and send you a new kit. You don’t have to do anything to continue receiving it.
Once you’ve placed your order, it will be shipped to you within two business days and delivered to you between two and seven business days after that. Because nothing needs refrigeration, it will be shipped to you in a standard box sized to accommodate your order. Delivery is made all across the United States.
Cancelling Your Plan
Medifast will automatically renew your order every 30 days and charge your credit card. You can cancel your shipment for any reason and at any time, you will just have to call them. The company will let you return your order for any reason and receive a full refund, as long as you do it within 30 days of receiving the order. You will have to pay the shipping and handling fees, but your refund will be returned within a couple of days.
You can cancel your shipment for any reason and at any time, you will just have to call them.
You will have to call Medifast Customer Service at 1-866-451-9264 to get a Return Authorization Number. Keep the original packaging because you will need it to return the products. It’s also important that you retain your proof of return because Medifast will not take responsibility for lost or stolen items.
Medifast is an effective meal delivery service if your main goal is weight loss. If you have difficulty cooking or aren’t interested in it, then it may not be the right choice for you. Daily cooking is required and it’s important that you exercise regularly in order to keep the weight off.