My Noom Review 2020: Noom versus Weight Watchers

THIS POST MAY CONTAIN AFFILIATE LINKS, MEANING I MAY RECEIVE A SMALL COMPENSATION IF YOU CLICK ON ONE OF THEM. THERE IS ABSOLUTELY NO COST TO YOU FOR CLICKING ON THESE LINKS. FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE SEE MY PRIVACY AND DISCLOSURE PAGE.

noom review versus weight watchers
Are you looking for an honest Noom review? Are you trying to decide if you should try out the Noom app in 2020 to lose weight? Well, you’ve come to the right place. I feel confident mine is going to be one of the best Noom 2020 reviews you’ll read online.

I signed up for the Noom app almost five weeks ago in 2019 after bloodwork came back with my blood sugar trending towards diabetes and my cholesterol the highest it had ever been. Plus my weight was at its highest. Also, my daughter has had great success on the program. She signed up for Noom in February  a few months before me in 2019. By May August the end of the year, she’d lost 30, 50 nearly 60 pounds. Wow.

By the way, thank you to Noom for including a link to this article on the Noom blog. I’m flattered!

Update on Noom

Did you read my Noom Before and After post? It talks about my transformation in 2019 and why I recommend signing up for Noom in 2020. Also, if you haven’t yet considered the Noom Peloton connection, do it. So many of my fellow Peloton users are having great success using Noom.

Also, I just found out that people in the United Kingdom can use Noom as well. So even though I’m in the United States, you can sign up for Noom if you live in the U.K. So great to know that our friends across the pond can benefit from Noom, too. 

2020 Update from Noom

“We remain committed to our mission of helping people live healthier lives during the current global health crisis.

As such, we are offering Noom to everyone at zero cost for two full weeks so you can continue to work on improving your health during this difficult time.

We believe our at-home curriculum will help you find structure and relief during this difficult time. Hang in there!

Love, The Noom Family”

My Noom app review

When I decided to download the Noom app on my iPhone and get started, I knew I was trying a diet plan that focused on calories. Not Points but good old calories. Fruit and veggies would no longer be “free.” (Can you tell I’m a former Weight Watchers?) Needless to say, I was terrified. When I discovered how many calories I would be “allowed” to eat each day, I thought I would be starving.

I thought the Noom calories were too low. Quickly, though, I realized there was nothing to be afraid of and they weren’t too low at all.

Noom organizes food choices into three categories:

  • Eat Noom Green Foods
  • Consume Moderate Amounts of Noom Yellow Foods
  • Be Conscious About Noom Red Foods

How Noom Green Foods, Noom Yellow Foods and Noom Red Foods work

It’s important to understand that green does not mean go and eat with reckless abandon and red does not mean stop, don’t eat this at all. The colors are designed so you can balance all three throughout the day with your food choices.

You have to get out of this all-or-nothing, black-and-white or, rather, green-and-red thinking. In fact, addressing these kinds of “thought distortions” (as Noom calls them) are a big part of the program’s proven psychology. They call these Noom Psych Tricks.

Noom Psych Tricks

For example, I’ve had peanut butter toast every morning for breakfast for the past 25 years. My favorite peanut butter is considered to be a red food. That hasn’t stopped me from enjoying peanut butter each morning. I’ve just adjusted how much peanut butter I put on my wheat toast. In addition, I’ve added sliced appled as a topping to my toast. My apple is one of the Noom green foods. So it the whole wheat bread.

These small changes were no big deal. But what is a big deal is that I can still enjoy my favorite breakfast without feeling deprived.

Noom green foods
I’ve learned to love avocado and guacamole. They are Noom yellow foods.

Interested in my Noom before and after? Check out this new blog post for 2020! For now, you can check out my Noom before and after pictures, below.

noom before and after pictures
My Noom before and after pictures.

Noom versus Weight Watchers

For years I’d followed Weight Watchers. However, every time Weight Watchers (now WW) would change how the Points system worked, I would get discouraged. I always felt like everything I learned needed to be relearned. Suddenly, I would feel myself out of my comfort zone.

I hated that feeling. Not surprisingly, the program stopped working for me. So for me, when thinking about Noom versus Weight Watchers, I’ll take Noom.

Noom Reviews: Noom Pros and Cons

I will say upfront that in writing this Noom review and considering the Noom pros and cons, the Noom pros do outweigh the Noom cons. But like with anything, if you’re being honest, there are always cons. I pride myself on providing honest reviews and content in my writing. I never sugar coat anything. So here is my honest Noom app review. I’ve included both pros and cons.

Noom Pros

It’s important to understand that the Noom app is a daily program. Every day that you open the app, you’ll have articles to read, tasks to do and thoughts to share with your personal goal coach as well as your accountability group.

There is a lot of content to keep things fresh for you as you endeavor on your weight loss journey. It’s a great and constant reminder that in order to change your behavior–and thus your weight–you must work at it daily.

Even so the Noom app approaches these daily tasks in bite size chunks. Reading through the information and taking the quizzes each day takes maybe five minutes. That’s not a lot of time.

My daughter told me that she just sets aside that time each morning before getting out of bed. I have started doing the Noom daily tasks as I’m enjoying my first cup of coffee. If you have a work commute when you might be catching up on Facebook, you could carve out five minutes for the daily Noom tasks.

Weighing in daily

Another way that Noom keeps you on task is with a daily weigh in. How is this a Noom pro, you may be asking? Well, Noom wants you to get over what it calls “scanxiety” (or scale anxiety). Right up front it explains that you will be stepping on the scale each day. Period. Full stop.

woman stepping on a scale to weigh herself noom peloton
Noom wants you to get over what it calls “scanxiety” (or scale anxiety) by stepping on the scale each day.

I’ll admit that weighing in each morning was hard at first. I was used to the Weight Watchers way of weighing in each week. However, after a few weeks of weighing in daily on the Noom app, I discovered something.

When I think about Noom versus Weight Watchers, I realized the anxiety that would loom before a weekly weigh in. Also, I tended to overeat or cheat the day of a weigh in, after I’d stepped on the scale, knowing that I have six more days to “fix” things.

With Noom there is immediate accountability. I’ve gotten to the point of being in a Zen-like mantra each morning before stepping on the scale. I tell myself “I will accept whatever number is there and move forward.”

Macros Tracker Daily Diary Food Journal Log

If you're going to be taking a more keto-approach to doing Noom, you may be interested in this macros tracker on Etsy. It's a daily diary where you can log your food based on three macronutrients--fat, carbs and protein.

The Noom app normalizes the ups and downs of weight loss

When you log your weight in the Noom app, you see it as a point plotted on a chart. I’ve included a picture of my chart to date. You see that there are a lot of ups and downs. I’ve also included a picture that Noom recently shared in one of my daily content readings. The Noom app wants you realize how normal it is for weight loss not to be in a straight line.

So when you’re not losing weight on Noom, remember this up and down is normal. It did make me feel a bit better.

noom peloton
One of the things I love about Noom is it normalizes the up and down of weight loss. That’s my chart on the left. As long as it is trending in the right direction, I’m good!

In addition to sharing pictures of charts, Noom acknowledges that there are small, tangible things you can do within your day to continue things in a downward trajectory. One example is drinking more water.

To be honest, on the days when I’m not losing weight on Noom, I realize I’m dehydrated. Conversely, I’ve found that on days when I stay hydrated, the next day I see a decrease on the scale. Even if it’s only .2 pounds, I’ll take it.

The more you move, the more you can eat

If there is one thing Noom doesn’t want you doing and that is eating less. In fact, the more you move, the more you can eat in a day.

Noom gives you “back” 50 percent of the calories you’ve burned in exercise for more food. So if I burn 400 calories in a spin class on the Peloton, Noom tacks on 200 calories for my daily total. Noom and Peloton–it’s a great combination.

Speaking of Noom and Peloton, here’s my article on what to eat before and after your workout.

Here are the 16 best accessories to buy when you start using a Peloton–Peloton and Noom, a great combination.

Why at 50 percent? Because Noom still wants you to be at a “deficit” with the calories in, calories out so you’ll lose weight. This works so much better than Activity Points.

Need new workout clothes? Check out my review of the best workout clothes subscription boxes. I treated myself to new leggings once I started my Noom journey.

There is a Noom restaurant tool

Within the Noom calorie counter is the ability to use the Noom restaurant tool. It’s not separate from the Noom calorie counter but rather built into it. According to the Noom blog, the Noom restaurant tool within the calorie counter let’s you “look up the meals at over 850 restaurants and chains.” I’ve used this Noom restaurant tool when dining at Panera Bread, Sheetz (the convenience store) and Starbucks.

Noom is cheaper than Weight Watchers

With Noom, you will be charged a fee based on how long you signed up for. I decided to try Noom out for four months. (I’ve since extended it to a year.) The Noom cost for four months was $129 or $32.25 per month. However, if I’d signed up for a full year–and maybe I should have at first–the Noom cost would have been $199 or $16.58 per month. Weight Watchers, by the way, costs $19.99 to use the app. That does not include the cost of in-person meetings.

Here is more about the Noom cost:

Find out how much weight you’ll lose  for good with Noom’s free 30-second  online evaluation.

Noom Necessities

When you start working with the Noom Diet Coach, you’re going to need some additional tools to be successful. These aren’t expensive but they are necessary. Here now is my list of suggested Noom necessities.

Noom Reviews Necessities

Use these kitchen and other tools to make your Noom journey successful.

Noom Diet Plan Reviews Cons

In this Noom review, my “cons” list is much smaller than the Noom “pros” list. But the cons are definitely worth mentioning. Because what’s a review if it’s only glowing pros. People, I’m going to be honest with you in this Noom review.

Noom grammar needs some help

noom review app
Noom grammar…

One of my biggest pet peeves with the Noom app is the grammar. I’m one of those people who yells at the TV or ads on the radio or billboards that use “less” when they should use “fewer.”

Noom is guilty of this. In fact, Noom’s grammar sucks. The Noom app also uses “us” when it should use “we.” For example, you see the sentence “Us Noom Nerds” a lot. This makes me crazy. Whenever I see it, I shout out, “It’s we.” It should be “We Noom Nerds.” Because if you took away the “Noom Nerds” part of the sentence, you wouldn’t say “Us like to do…” You would say “We like to do…” So Noom app grammarians, look into this.

There is no Noom online

Perhaps this is my age showing, but one of the biggest cons for me is that Noom is the Noom app only. There is no Noom online. You must do everything you want within the program on the app. Sometimes I want a break from my phone. I wish there was a Noom online option.

Also, when I first started and wanted a suggested printout of the Noom green foods, Noom yellow foods and Noom red foods, it was hard to track down. I did eventually find it with a deep dive Google search. But for things like that, I do believe there should be a Noom online complement to the Noom app. At the very least there should be lists of food examples in the “Help” section of the Noom app.

Information from previous tasks not saved

A couple of times a week, the Noom app ask you to answer questions. You type in responses and then Noom parrots those back to you. If I wanted to go back to a previous day’s task and review what I wrote, when I get to the screen where I’d answered my questions, my answers are gone. The whole thing is blank, as if I’d never done it.

If you’re reading this during your New Year’s resolutions, here are some other deals to be had.

Overall thoughts on the Noom app

You’ve heard me compare Noom vs Weight Watchers throughout this Noom review. I’ve shared with you my hesitancy to return to calorie counting after so many years of relying on Points.

But here’s the thing. With Points values, things change whenever WW decides to change up its program. With calories, they are just that–calories. Calories don’t change. So even though I was terrified of returning to counting calories and worried I wouldn’t be able to eat enough, I’ve learned I was wrong. I got over my fear and Noom worked for me to lose weight.

Why you can lose weight for good

Noom’s taglines include “The Last Weight Loss Program You’ll Ever Need” and “Lose Weight for Good with Noom.” After a month on the program, I believe those taglines to be the truth.

Here are some must-have tools for starting your weight-loss journey. I’ve made a list over on Amazon for ease of shopping!

I feel so much more in control of my eating. WW can say no foods are off limits but let’s be honest: if you want that glazed doughnut and eating it will take away half of your daily Points, you’re not going to eat the glazed doughnut. Then you’ll spend the rest of your day thinking about the glazed doughnut you cannot eat.

I was so pleasantly surprised to learn that a glazed doughnut has 180 calories only. Sure, it’s one of the Noom red foods. But the day I wanted a glazed doughnut, I had one. In fact, I had two. That same day I also ate plenty of lowcalorically dense foods from the Noom green foods list. In addition, I drank tons of water. The next day, do you know what happened when I stepped on the scale? I’d lost .4 pounds.

I can’t wait for my next annual check up and blood draw at the doctors to see how much my blood sugar and cholesterol have changed.

noom red yellow green foods peloton psych tricks
On the Noom program, yes, you can eat doughnuts!

My Noom review: Does Noom work?

So, does Noom work? Yes! “Yes, Noom works.” My daughter, whom I’d mentioned earlier, is down 30 plus nearly 60 pounds. All told on Noom, I lost 12 18 pounds. I reached my goal last summer and have maintained my weight loss since then, plus or minus two pounds. I’m OK with that small fluctuation.

More importantly than numbers on the scale, my clothes are fitting better.

Do you have those pairs of pants that you love but which you judge your self-worth by according to how well (or poorly) they fit when you put them on? Yeah, I do, too. And those pants now all just slide right on and fit great. One pair, I’ll admit, I have to wear with a belt now. Pretty soon I’m going to have to buy some new pants, and I’m totally OK with that, thanks to Noom.

If you’re shopping for a new wardrobe, my review of online stylists can help.

21 thoughts on “My Noom Review 2020: Noom versus Weight Watchers”

  1. Not far above the doughnut picture, you wrote “That same day I also ate plenty of calorically dense foods from the Noom green foods list.” I thought green foods were NOT calorically dense. See chart below, which I copied off the internet.

    Types Green Yellow Red
    Solid Foods Low CD (<1) Medium CD (1 < x < 2.4) Higher CD (2.4 < x)
    Liquids Low CD (<0.4) Medium CD (0.4 < x < 0.5) Higher CD (0.5 < x)
    Soups Low CD (<0.5) Medium CD (0.5 < x < 1.0) Higher CD (1.0 < x)

    Reply
  2. Thanks for your comprehensive review, Leah. I agree with a lot of what you have to say. I’ve been doing noom since March 2019 and am really impressed with both my weight loss and the healthier habits I have developed. I’ve always been a pretty healthy person – I eat lots of whole foods, exercise almost every day, am careful with portions, etc. Like many others, I still have areas where I could make healthier choices and that reflected in my weight and struggles to lose the weight I wanted to lose. I’m 35 pounds down and have 15 more to go. I’m taking it slowly but surely and enjoy the benefits every day. I especially love having a coach and a support group to rely on. Noom is a no-nonsense program and will give you what you put into it – no extreme promises or prescriptions. I strongly recommend giving it a shot.

    Reply
  3. Thank you for your review. I just started Noom two days ago and your comments helped clear up a few things.
    May I ask where to find the list of green, yellow, and red foods? That would be especially helpful
    PS In only two days, the grammar and typos have bothered me, too. You’re not alone.

    Reply
    • Thanks for your comment. Silly me, I didn’t bookmark it but will look again and post a link in this comment when I find it. Also, you might want to reach out to your Coach and ask him/her to email it to you. Stay tuned.

      Leah

      Reply
  4. Thanks for sharing your review. I never had success on WW and have been surprised with weight loss with Noom. I don’t use all the features but the ones I do are helpful. I do not find the group or coaching to be worthwhile, which is a shame…

    I’m curious how long it took you to lose the 18 pounds.

    I’m in my 4th week on Noom, and I’m just about -4 pounds. I have a pie in the sky goal of losing a total of 35-40 pounds.

    Reply
    • Hi, Alli.

      It took me four months to lose 18 pounds. My daughter has lost nearly 60 pounds and it took her about 10 months.

      Hope that helps and good luck on your journey!

      Leah

      Reply
  5. If you have been on weight watchers for years why was your blood sugar trending towards diabetes and your cholesterol the highest it had ever been? Also, do you believe Noom will keep your weight off for more than a couple of years? Because medical science now says that weight loss is a problem because it causes more weight gain in the end. And that’s what I struggle with!

    Reply
    • Because I had fallen off the WW wagon and when I went back to the program, I didn’t like how it had changed. So I ended up gaining weight. Yes, I believe Noom will help me keep it off. I’ve been on maintenance now for three weeks and so far so good. I think weighing myself every morning will be the game changer.

      Reply
  6. Hi Leah –
    Can I ask how you synced Noom with your Peloton app? I don’t see Peloton listed on Noom’s list of apps that are compatible. Maybe I’m looking in the wrong place.
    Thanks!

    Reply
    • Hi, Margo:

      I believe I synced it with the iPhone Health app first. So in settings I went into Health Privacy and activated the Peloton app to sync with Health. Then within the same area of the Health Privacy, I activated Noom and allowed it to read data about active energy, etc. It’s the “active energy” that Peloton is synced to and which syncs to Noom. Sometimes it doesn’t happen automatically after I’ve finished my workout but usually by the end of the day it’s there. Hope that helps.

      Reply
        • Hey, Margo: I felt like I needed to write an update. With the latest IOS update, Peloton is no longer syncing with Noom. I’ve asked Noom customer service about this and they say they don’t know why this is happening or what I could do to fix it. So now I need to log my exercise manually, which sucks. I’ve updated my review here to say just that. What a bummer.

          Reply
  7. Not impressed, but since I paid for it am continuing. I signed up in January. It’s May and zero weight loss. Menopause may be the culprit and it’s super frustrating. My weight goes up and down 4 pounds, so basically maintaining. The grammar is not my issue. It’s the constant daily typos! I told customer service. They said they’re doing a scan to fix all the errors. Why they didn’t at launch I’m not sure.

    The food groupings don’t help me as a diabetic, low carber. The daily weigh ins still give me anxiety. Especially when I’m not seeing progress. So I stopped or do it on occasion.

    I have gotten a few good tips from all the literature. I like commiserating with my group. I am exercising more. However, there seems to be a lot of contradiction in the literature, too.. Like they want to try and cover all the bases. “Weigh in daily.” Then a few weeks later, “don’t weigh in as often.”

    The coaches aren’t much help and are too Socratic. At least in my experience. And the group area is not searchable, when you are trying to add to an existing thread, so there are a lot of individual posts about the same topic.

    I’m glad you’ve had success. Many in my group have.

    Reply
    • Thank you for posting your comment. I’m sorry the program has not been as successful for you as it has been for me. I appreciate the time you took to share your thoughts.

      Leah

      Reply

Leave a Comment