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  • A Healthier You, Wherever You Are With Noom Subscription

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  • Apps have become a mainstream part of living more healthfully. Just think about it: There are apps built in to smart phones that help you track activity levels (perhaps prompting you to move a bit more), apps designed to help you track what you eat, apps to guide you through workouts and meditations, and more. While there are a sea of apps to help you put healthier habits in place, Noom, which touts itself as “the last weight loss program you’ll ever need” is getting considerable attention.

    The Noom diet is a personalized weight loss plan available through the phone app of the same name. The app’s creators claim that it helps people reach their personal weight goals.

    A lot of people write to me asking “What does Noom stand for?” Noom is not an acronym for anything. According to the founder, Noom is moon spelled backwards. because the moon is always there for your as a quiet guide when you are lost.

    Noom is an app designed to help people lose weight, get fit, and stay healthy. It uses a unique traffic light system to rank foods according to how many calories they contain. “Green” foods, such as spinach and broccoli, are the least calorie dense, whereas “red” foods contain more calories and should make up less of a portion. Using these data, the app’s creators develop personalized weight loss plans that they claim can help deliver long lasting weight loss results.

    To get a personalized weight loss plan, a person will need to purchase a subscription and answer some questions on the Noom website or app. The algorithm will then design a weight loss plan to fit the person’s needs. Shortly after a person logs in for the first time, the app will pair them with an appropriate health coach. The coach will provide relevant dietary information and advice to help the person achieve their weight goals.

    If you thrive on smartphone apps and virtual interaction, the digital health app Noom could work for you. With Noom, it’s not just about what you eat – but why you eat. Noom is about building self-awareness, accountability and habits that can lead to weight loss and healthy weight maintenance.

    On the Noom Healthy Weight app, you log every meal and snack, plus your daily weight and exercise. Your one-on-one coach engages with you and offers encouragement through the app’s messaging feature. You also connect with your Noom support group coach and assigned group members.

    Caloric density is the nutritional basis of the Noom Healthy Weight program, which was developed with input by registered dietitians and psychologists. Noom encourages foods with low caloric density, meaning foods that are high in water and lower in calories by volume. Based on your age, gender and individual weight-loss goal – the weight you want to reach by a certain date at your chosen pace – Noom calculates your suggested daily calorie range.

    The Noom organization evolved from an exercise- and calorie-tracking app to today’s platform, which combines technology, human coaching and psychology. The Noom team includes co-founders Saeju Jeong and Artem Petakov, chief of psychology, and clinical psychologist Andreas Michaelides and more than 3,000 human coaches.

    Noom coaches, who undergo training by Noom, are selected for their empathy and helpfulness. While not all are dietitians or nutrition experts, many members of the coaching team hold a range of degrees and certifications relating to health and wellness. Although Noom has been called a “millennial diet,” the age range of users is actually spread fairly evenly among those 18 to 60 and older, with people ages 40 to 59 making up the largest proportion, according to the website.

    • Weekly challenges and educational information. Topics involve nutrition, stress management, goal setting, and healthy habit formation.
    • Tools to track your progress. These allow you to log your meals, exercise regimen, and body weight.
    • A virtual coaching team. A goal specialist, group coach, and support group are meant to help you stay on track.
    • Biometric tracking. These features help you monitor your blood sugar and blood pressure levels.
    • Noom offers a 14-day trial for $1 if you’d like to test it out before paying the monthly fee.

    Noom categorizes food as green, yellow, or red based on its calorie and nutrient density.

    The app recommends consuming a set percentage of foods from each color — 30% green, 45% yellow, and 25% red.

    According to the Noom website, these are examples of foods for each color (7):

    • Fruits: bananas, apples, strawberries, watermelon, blueberries
    • Vegetables: tomatoes, cucumbers, salad greens, carrots, onions, spinach
    • Starchy vegetables: parsnips, beets, sweet potatoes, squash
    • Diary: skim milk, non-fat yogurt, non-fat Greek yogurt, non-fat cheese sticks
    • Dairy alternatives: unsweetened almond, cashew, or soy milk
    • Whole grains: oatmeal, brown rice, whole grain bread, whole grain pita, whole grain pasta, whole grain tortilla, whole grain cereals
    • Condiments: marinara, salsa, sauerkraut, ketchup, light mayo
    • Beverages: unsweetened tea and coffee
    • Lean meats: grilled chicken, turkey, and lean cuts of beef, pork, and lamb
    • Seafood: tuna, salmon, tilapia, scallops
    • Dairy: low fat milk, low fat cheeses, low fat cottage cheese, Greek yogurt
    • Legumes and seeds: lentils, pinto beans, chickpeas, peas, quinoa, black beans, soybeans
    • Grains and grain products: couscous, white rice, white bread, white pasta
    • Beverages: diet soda, beer

    Red

    • Meats: ham, red meats, fried meats, bacon, sausage, hot dogs, hamburgers
    • Nuts and nut butters: peanut butter, almond butter, almonds, walnuts
    • Desserts and sweets: cake, chocolate, cookies, candy, pastries
    • Snack foods: French fries, potato chips, energy and snack bars
    • Condiments and toppings: butter, mayonnaise, ranch dressing
    • Beverages: wine, juices like orange juice

    The Bottom Line

    • Noom is an app that you can access using a mobile device, such as a smartphone or tablet.
    • The app may help people lose weight by promoting low calorie, nutrient-dense foods and encouraging healthy lifestyle changes.
    • If its cost, accessibility, and virtual-style health coaching don’t sway your decision, Noom may be worth a try.