McDonald’s Joins Forces With Weight Watchers

By Jim F


It’s a scandal.

McDonald’s New Zealand are using the Weight Watchers logo on their menu boards and tray mats. According to the chief executive of McDonald’s NZ it’s a “noble cause”.

Three meals: Chicken McNuggets, Filet-O-Fish and a chicken wrap will be labeled with the Weight Watchers logo.

The idea is to keep each meal at 6.5 points, and staff have been trained to try and make the meals “more consistently”

Nutritionists are right to be skeptical. The veneer of health belies the fact that we go to McDonald’s to get burgers and fries. That’s what brings in the profits.

The deal is a world-first… but Australia will be next for the unholy alliance

What are Weight Watchers thinking?

The meals on offer are (6.5 WW points) (see more at McDonald’s):

  • Filet-O-Fish, salad and diet drink / water.
  • Six chicken nuggets (with sauce), salad and diet drink / water.
  • Chicken wrap, medium diet drink / water.


  1. ArrowSmith

    I’m really glad the calorie counts are on the drive-through menu. The other week I went to buy fast food and I gave Burger King a try. Well even the plain old Whopper would have run me 900 calories! Even the Junior Whopper was 500+ calories! So much calories for crap food. If I’m going to consume a 1000-calorie burger, at least I’ll go get a gourmet restaurant version.

  2. Murney

    Oh yes, and back to the point. I think its good that the points are on the menu. If you see the points, you will probably take that option, instead of thinking “Oh well I’m here now I might as well have the double mac and chips and I’ll just forget it happened”.
    I admire the people who haven’t had fast food in 10 years. I think its unusual. I agree that most people find themselves, unwillingly, in that position from time to time. Personally I didn’t eat in McDonalds until I was 20, and eat fast food rarely, but its still very hard to avoid in certain situations.

  3. Murney

    Yeah, I’m with Mum. WeightWatchers worked for me, because I could incorporate it into my lifestyle. Pointing is just a tool to help you gain awareness of good and bad choices. I feel the ideal outcome of WeightWatchers for me was when, after I’d got to goal, I had learned enough that I naturally stay within my points on any given day, without consciously adding them up.
    Someone mentioned that gummy sweets were less points than almonds and that it discouraged healthy choices? Yes, perhaps there are less points in the fat free gum sweets. But anyone who has ever attended a meeting will know that no leader will encourage the gummys over the nuts. You are taught to live healthily. Simple as that.

  4. Elle

    It will never work!


  5. Spectra

    I sometimes ate at McDonald’s when I was actively losing weight on WW and I didn’t choose Chicken Nuggets, that’s for sure. I usually opted for a salad with grilled chicken or a small fruit and yogurt parfait without the granola. I just figured out how many Points everything was on my own. Basically all they’re doing now is alerting the public that you can eat McDonald’s while on WW and if you eat X meal, it will be Y Points.

  6. Lana

    Wow, I just lost the last bit of respect I had for Weight Watchers. My beef with weight watchers is proper nutrition and weight loss is so much more than calories in versus calories out. What I know from weight watchers is they teach you that there are no good calories or bad calories. Simply not true. Calories from McDonald’s Chicken nuggets are bad calories.
    If you think of calories like money you spend then don’t you want more bang for your buck? wouldn’t you want the to eat foods with the most possible nutrients? Deep friend Chicken Nuggets simply do not have a lot of nutrients compared to other foods.

  7. sprice76

    Ay ay ay…so tired of this. If you are counting (calories, points, whatever), you’re on a DIET! If you can’t go out to a restaurant and order a meal without knowing how much of your daily ration it makes up, you’re on a diet!

    I don’t know if the points system has changed, but I know that 10 years ago (when I was still dieting), 100 calories of sugar candies were far less points than 100 calories of almonds, simply because the almonds are high in fat. How much sense does that make?

    10 years ago, I gave up on diets and lost 70 lbs without counting a single calorie, or anything else. There was no “plan”, no menus, no nothing. I ate the same things I was eating before, at least at first, just in much smaller amounts. It’s all about portion control.

  8. b

    I’m sure that even with a very healthy diet you occasionally eat things that you don’t technically “need.” Maybe even the occasional item of questionable nutritional value!

    If someone enjoys chicken McNuggets (I liked them better when they were mystery meat myself, before the “all white meat” thing), this is a way for them to have that dubiously-healthy treat once in a while while overall staying on track with their diet goals. I personally am very wary of anyone or any diet plan that calls for people to 100% give up ANY category of food that they enjoy, even if it is processed junk. A small amount of processed junk once a month or less will have no significant impact overall on either health or weight loss.

  9. Zorbs

    I would never consider low quality fast food to be a “splurge” and haven’t eaten that garbage in almost 10 years.

    @Mum “To excpect people to not have fast food in this day in age is crazy.”

    Absolutely untrue. With planning, it is absolutely possible to avoid fast food completely.

  10. ArrowSmith

    I don’t see why a person can’t splurge once in a while. But yeah I have to cut down my rate of at least eating once a week at fast food.

  11. ArrowSmith

    I fail to see how any fried foods fit into a solid diet plan.

  12. Alison

    I have not had fast food in at least 3 years. No one NEEDS to eat that crap EVER. Lifestyle or not there is no such thing as healthy fast food. I lost 60 pounds on WeightWatchers but I’m not sure I can consider myself a weightwatchers member anymore.
    Weightwatchers is selling out for the almighty buck and I for one am disappointed.

  13. Mum

    Weight watchers is not a diet it is a lifestyle. It is designed to not only help you lose weight but to keep it off. To excpect people to not have fast food in this day in age is crazy. It has a philosphy that you can enjoy life and all it has to offer while still losing weight.

    Perhaps people should make the efort to properly find out how it works and why it is the most successful, SCIENTIFICALLY proven weight loss program in the world.

    Half the nutrionists that makes these comments about this type of thing being bad generally are not half as qualified nor respected in their field as the ones that guide weight Watchers and the program.

  14. Spectra

    Actually, I’m surprised they didn’t do this earlier. It seems like WW is all about making big $$ these days. They had no qualms about partnering with various food manufacturers to come out with WW brand food items, so why would this be any different? Besides, I’m sure there are people on WW out there that get dragged to McD’s because their kid or their spouse wants to go. At least now they have some options.


    @J.Foster Totally agree, how can a diet company attach their name to Mickey D’s in good conscience?

  16. J. Foster

    Surely this has GOT to hurt the Weight Watchers brand?