What Is The Optavia Diet—And How Does It Work?

Optavia is a branded diet, requiring the purchase of pre-packaged meals or Fuelings, which consist of everything from crunchy snacks, shakes and bars to cereals, soups, pasta and more. Fuelings are designed by physicians, dietitians and scientists for weight loss, according to the company. There are over 50 different options, all of which the company says are portion controlled and nutrient dense, featuring 24 vitamins and minerals, high-quality, complete protein and BC30™ probiotic cultures to support digestive health. Fuelings are made without colors, flavors or sweeteners from artificial sources, according to Optavia. Total daily calorie intake may be around 800 to 1,000 calories per day as a result.

The popular Optimal Weight 5 & 1 Plan, consists of six small meals per day, to be eaten every two to three hours, with five of those meals being Optavia Fuelings. For the sixth meal, you will learn how to prepare your own “Lean & Green” meal—consisting of 5 to 7 ounces of lean protein, three servings of non-starchy vegetables and up to two servings of healthy fats—designed to stabilize blood sugar.

Optavia recommends avoiding alcohol, sugary drinks, solid shortening and high-calorie desserts while on the diet. There are also a few foods that are limited at the start of the Optavia diet but reintroduced later on, says the company, including starchy veggies (such as corn, peas and potatoes), low-fat dairy products and whole grain products.

Additionally, Optavia offers a robust support element, consisting of coaches. Per Optavia, coaches are “the lifeblood of the program.” The majority of coaches (90%) started as clients of the diet, according to the company, and use their transformation as motivation to lead others through the process. Your coach will check in with you the day before you begin your program, as well as the first four days of the program. From there, you can establish regular check-ins with your coach via your preferred mode of communication, such as by phone or email.

Optavia also trademarked their “Habits of Health Transformational System,” a process which enables clients to learn how to create healthy habits through small, daily changes, often starting with achieving a healthy weight and focusing on healthy eating. In addition to food, it also addresses hydration, exercise, sleep, mindfulness and surroundings—with the goal of healthy habit creation in all areas of life. The “system” consists of Dr. A’s Habits of Health Second Edition and Your LifeBook, as well as access to the Habits of Health app.