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64%

of people who tried this diet like it

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based on 53 reviews

Jenny Craig

With its small army of celeb success stories, Jenny Craig shows off its effectiveness.

QUICK FACTS Start the Diet Now Advertisement
  • Established: 1983
  • Founder: Jenny and Sid Craig
  • Headquarters: Carlsbad, California
  • Stock Symbol: NESN
  • Accessibility: Online, Centers
  • Diet Type: Prepackaged Meals, Portion Control, Low-Calorie, Low-Fat
  • Gender: Male and Female
  • Celebrity Endorsements: Valerie Bertinelli, Jason Alexander, Sarah Rue, Carrie Fisher
BACKGROUND

With more than 640 centers around the globe and thousands of female followers, Jenny Craig has established itself as a leader in the weight-loss industry since 1983.

The Jenny Craig approach is built on three tenets: food, body and mind. The food element focuses on healthy eating and portion control and also teaches you how to eat the foods you love in moderation, the body element focuses on exercise and overcoming barriers to being physically active. The mind element focuses on positive thinking and getting the support you need to reach your weight loss goals.

The program is most known for its pre-packaged and portion-controlled meals. But Jenny Craig sets itself apart from other meal-delivery diets because as you reach your goal weight, you work closely with Jenny Craig counselors to learn about portion control, healthy cooking and eating at home or while dining out.

After an in-depth interview with a Jenny Craig representative, you are given a personalized meal and fitness plan. The two basic programs are the In-Person Support and Jenny Direct programs. With the former, you attend weekly meetings, consultations and food pick-up at your local Jenny Craig center and the latter gives you the same support over the phone and delivers food to your door.

In addition, there are five Jenny Craig plans: Jenny Craig for Women, Jenny Craig for Men, Jenny Craig for Teens, Jenny Craig for Spouses and Jenny Craig for Seniors.

Famous Jenny Craig Spokeswomen include Kirstie Alley, Valerie Bertinelli, Phylicia Rashad, Queen Latifah, Nicole Sullivan and Sara Rue.

Other Jenny Craig plans include:

Jenny Craig at Home: A plan that allows you to complete the Jenny Craig plan from the privacy of your own home.

Jenny Direct: The Jenny Craig program delivered straight to your door.

Jenny Craig for Men: The Jenny Craig plan specifically designed to meet the nutritional needs of men who want to lose weight.

Jenny Craig Silver: The Jenny Craig plan for older adults who want to improve their health.

JENNY CRAIG VIDEOS

Jenny Craig YouTube Channel

Consumer Reports Jenny Craig vs. NutriSystem Taste Test

Flashmob Surprises Jenny Craig Celebrities

PRO
  • Features a one-on-one relationship with counselor
  • Menu includes a wide-variety of foods
  • Program has a long history and is a trusted brand in weight loss programs
  • Prepackaged foods offer convenience
  • Named #2 in the Best Commercial Diets by US News, 2011
CON
  • May be a challenge to transition from the company's prepackaged meals to "real" food
  • Low-calorie diet may be too strict
  • Weekly in-person meetings can sometimes be inconvenient
  • Financial responsibility of prepacked meals may not be a long-term healthy eating solution
USER REVIEWS

A sampling of feedback and experiences shared by our community.

The food is great! Ediets is disgusting. Portions are small but your stomach does shrink so you don't really need more. Not all foods were wonderful but some I would eat even when not dieting. The food seems expensive but at the end of 6 weeks, I had actually saved money. I ate less, enjoyed my meals, and lost weight. - Katrina 1/9/11

I tried the program for a few weeks and was disappointed in the lack of support from the counselors. They didnt seem to have any "real" training. They said I could tell them things I dont like and they would make sure they werent included in the foods I bought (I hate raisins and mushrooms). They assured me nothing I bought had those 2 things in them, but lots actually did. They obviously didnt know their product. Way too expensive also. - Sandy 11/29/10

I've maintained my weight loss, fluctuating about 7 pounds, but still well below my goal weight for a year today! Great program, great food and awesome consultants. - Nina 7/12/10

Easiest diet I ever followed. Where I have always fallen off the wagon before is when I get stressed and am too busy to cook or just don't feel like it. With Jenny when I am stressed I just make a point of following the plan even better at those times. I don't do meals on my own, I just eat the Jenny food and know that way I am on track. - Carol Ann 1/17/10

I lost about 40 pounds on Jenny Craig and, with the exception of playing with 5 pounds here and there, have kept it off. I like that they first teach you portion control through their meals and then gradually reintroduce store-bought food into your diet. The one-on-one interaction with a counselor also helped keep me on track and did not allow me to hide in the back of a meeting. - A.C. 12/29/09

DIET and NUTRITION

The program's success is in the Jenny Craig food, which offers convenience with portioned and calorie-controlled pre-packaged meals. The Jenny Craig plan has a daily caloric intake of 1,200-1,300 and contains 50% to 60% carbohydrate, 20% to 25% protein, and 20% to 25% fat. Three meals and one snack are allowed each day.

Meals are either picked up at Jenny Craig centers or delivered straight to your door. There are four different menu options with Jenny Craig. You can customize your own meals, order pre-planned meals, enjoy an all-vegetarian menu or select a menu specifically designed for adolescents.

Eating on the Jenny Craig program can be easy because most of your meal is provided for you. Jenny Craig foods are paired with your own grocery foods like fruits, vegetables, low-fat dairy, whole grains and heart-healthy fats. Low glycemic veggies can eaten in limitless portions. Although the meals are prepackaged, the makeup of the foods you eat will set you up for how you should eat to maintain a balanced diet. A sample day of meals on the Jenny Craig program is reflected below:

  • Breakfast: Blueberry Pancakes and Veggie Sausage
  • Lunch: Broccoli and Cheese Potato
  • Dinner: Three Cheese Ziti Marinara with side salad
  • Dessert: Triple Chocolate Cheesecake

A dining out guide is also included so that you can eat out without sabotaging your weight loss goals. No foods are off limits on the Jenny Craig program. You work with a counselor to learn how to safely incorporate your favorite foods into your healthy eating plan.

EXERCISE

On Jenny Craig you are given a personalized activity and motivational plan to get you moving more. When you meet with your consultant in the Jenny Craig office, they will help you personalize your fitness plan. This can also be done online for those that are doing the at-home delivery program. You will work to develop an approach to fitness that starts where you are now and builds on that. You will also be identifying personal barriers to your physical activity so that you can work to remove those and stay focused on the benefits of exercise.

The Jenny Craig activity plan centers around three kinds of activities. The first are natural activities like house cleaning, shopping and gardening. Next are planned activities such as doing cardio at the gym or taking a yoga or aerobics class. Last are playful activities like taking a dance class or playing football with your kids.

Over time you gradually increase your activity through these three elements and you learn how to incorporate more movement into your day.

Your planned exercises will include a combination of cardio, resistance and stretching activities. The Jenny Craig program strongly recommends exercise while on the program so that you can have an established habit to maintain your weight loss after you’ve reached your goal weight. Some of the outlined planned exercise options as well as the playful options are listed below:

  • Weightlifting
  • Walking
  • Yoga
  • Kickboxing
  • Aerobic Dance
  • Dancing
  • Bicycling
  • Playing Basketball
  • Playing Tag with the Kids
JENNY CRAIG FAQ

Common questions asked about the Jenny Craig program by our community. Click to see the full answer.

Is the Jenny Craig food frozen or freeze-dried? - Celia 6/18/11

CONCLUSION

With its focus on food, body and mind, Jenny Craig is a well-rounded weight loss program that offers the training and support you need to achieve your weight loss goals. Its varied programs and pre-packaged meals and snacks offers the convenience of healthy eating in combination with a personalized plan that fits your lifestyle.

While most pre-packaged meal weight loss programs don't provide you with any information on how to prepare and eat healthy meals on your own, Jenny Craig offers support that educates you on healthy cooking and eating.

See the Official Jenny Craig Web Site

JENNY CRAIG SLIDESHOWS

View About Jenny Craig Slideshow

Other Slideshows About Jenny Craig

7 Weight Loss Plans Fit for Fall

The Cost of Losing 20 Pounds

JENNY CRAIG RESOURCES

Jenny Craig on Facebook

Jenny Craig on Twitter

Jenny Craig on IMDB

Jenny Craig Good Morning America Statement

Jenny Craig at Wikipedia

Jenny Craig Contact Information
Common Misspellings

JennyCraig, Jenny Criag, Jennie Craig, Jenny Craig deit, Jenny Craig diet, Jennie Craig diet, Jennie Craig deit, jennycraig.com


Related Diets: Volumetrics, Weight Watchers, Weight Watchers Online for Men, Jen4Men, Jenny Craig at Home, Jenny Craig for Men, Jenny Direct, Nutrisystem, Valerie Bertinelli: Losing It


> Leave Feedback

User Feedback

(Page 1 of 6, 115 total comments)

virginia

I have used them on and off for years the first time about a year and a half and it was successful ,this time terrible experience ! Into my forth week reordered the food (I get home delivery ) was told my order would be here on 5/1/13 the day came and went finally they called said sorry and it would arrive 5/2/13
told them I was very unhappy about this since I had to wait for the delivery in my NYC apartment. The following day in the evening got a call saying the where sorry due to ups delays (the weather has been beautiful) I was being sent a new order that would arrive on 5/7/13 to dispose of the two weeks worth of food that would be rancid . Upon reflection I called back in frustration to cancel my order they offer me first one free day of food who cares I told them I would try another program I was fed up. They said ok but said they would have to charge me almost $100 American dollars for shipping and handling for the rancid food I never received.I knew they where expensive but this is just disgusting and they would not budge . So they canceled my order charged me close to $100.00 ! Had to call my credit card company who said that was crazy and will dispute the whole charge.WILL NEVER USE THEM AGAIN RIP OFF!!
PS STILL AT 3PM THE FOLLOWING DAY HAVE NOT GOTTEN THE DELIVERY

VIRGINIA NYC

posted May 5th, 2013 5:49 pm


Christy

I have done JC twice - both times to lose weight after the birth of children. A few reasons I would not necessarily do it again:

1. I was starving constantly. The food is low fat and low protein, which is simply not satisfying - particularly when breastfeeding. (Note: I did the 1700 calorie diet and found I absolutely could not go lower than that while nursing..)
2. The nutritionists are less professionals than cheerleaders. Personally, I received NO customized exercise plan and basically made up my own program. I must also say that I had a difficult time taking nutrition advice from employees who were clearly more out of shape than I am.
3. The menu gets boring.

There is really nothing magical about the diet itself. It is based on caloric intake, and if you're able to stick with it, you will indeed lose weight. It seems well-suited to losing large amonths of weight, but ill-suited for people like myself, who are really trying to lose the last 5 pounds.

Overall, it's OK, but nothing to rave about.

posted Apr 5th, 2013 4:41 am


Joan Lieblich

Nasty people working in Hartsdale, NY....They don't want you unless you join forever...Lisa and her manager...I'm telling everyone I know, learn to count points with weight- watchers, you will be better off and you won't get insulted by people who should be on a diet...

posted Feb 25th, 2013 11:13 pm


Madge

I never had a weight problem in my life until I got sick, had three operations, and gained 75 pounds during my two year recovery. I went from 123 to 198 lbs in a year and a half. Since I had never dieted in my life, was ill, and really couldn't exercise consistently, I decided to join Jenny Craig. Watching Valerie Bertinelli's weight loss in the media was the catalyst that got me to join. Plus, the idea of eating prepackaged meals was an easy alternative for me, because I couldn't stand for more than 10 minutes without pain.

With any diet there are positives and negatives. My goal was to loose the first 50 lbs. on Jenny and the other 20 by myself. I lost 40 lbs. while on Jenny Craig, before it became cost prohibitive. The positives: It really does work, if you follow the plan. I liked some of the foods, and others I didn't. With the addition of fruit, veggies and snack, I found no desire to cheat. It was plenty of food for me. The frozen entrees are better than the shelf ones by far, but they cost more money.

As I spent more time on the program, I ordered my own food, and had much more success. Meaning, if you pick your own meals, there will be less reason to cheat. Additionally, I wasn't being loaded up on items (salad dressing, dry meals, etc.) that were increasing my monthly bill. More on that below.

Unfortunately, The negatives outweigh the positives. As others have mentioned, the food is very expensive ~ upwards of $700 a month. My first counselor was ordering everything and anything for me every month. I wasn't told that I could order my own food until she stopped calling me for three weeks, and I called the corporate office and complained about her. I told the HQ that I no longer wanted her as my counselor.

I was assigned another counselor, she was mature, had been on the program, and understood how to work with people that were ill. After I started ordering my own meals, my food bill decreased to about $450 a month. Still very expensive, but I was loosing weight and didn't tell my husband how much it was really costing.

Then, my counselor was "let go", and I was assigned to a male. This didn't set right with me, because I wasn't comfortable talking to a man about my weight loss issues. Furthermore, he was in his early 20's and had no idea how to deal with a customer that was ill.

One of my doctors recommended the Smart for Life diet, and I started today. If I can loose the additional 30 lbs, I will be more than happy, and it's a only $150 a month. So long, Jenny!

posted Mar 22nd, 2012 3:58 pm


Newgail

I just want to say if you are complaining about Jenny try The Biggest Loser Meal Delivery and you will never say a bad word about Jenny food or Jenny Counselors ever again. Now I must go give a piece of my mind in a Biggest Loser review.

posted Dec 8th, 2011 5:08 pm


sws

This isn't a bad diet by any means. However, it's expensive and consists of heavily processed meals. The convenience of just opening a box and having the portion be correct is a nice benefit. Most of the frozen entrees average between $5 & $7 and you will have to supplement with produce and dairy that you buy on top of that. The quility of the foods vary. The frozen choices are more palatable than the shelf stable non frozen. As you go on with the plan, you do start to feel pretty tired of the foods! Eating became kind of like being on a flight and eating the airplane food! :) So what is good, the pre-pakaged copnvenience, is also what is bad. I didn't find the person who I met with each week to be overly knowledgable or useful. She seemed to be most interested in taking my food order. I assume she receives a comission. Who you end up with there is of course, the luck of the draw. I'm sure there are many who do a good job with it. I didn't see that part. Spending over $100/week to drive to another town, pick up processed foods and meet with someone whose usefulnessI wasn't clear, was not a win for me. You can expect to lose 1-2 lbs per week if you follow exactly and get active. I discovered I could do the same with Weight Watchers for 1/10 of the cost. Bottom line, it's worth a try, but may not be a fit for you.

posted Nov 22nd, 2011 7:57 pm


CQ

They care about your money more than you.

posted Oct 31st, 2011 5:29 pm


Jin

Terrible 3 days return policy. If your body did not tell you about the reaction from their foods within 3 days, you lost your money.

posted Oct 31st, 2011 5:24 pm


Jessica

I went on JC for 1 year, stuck to it religiously and spent probably in the upwards of $6,000.00 between food and fees. (The larger you are when you start, the more food youâ??re required to buy, NOT including fruit, Veggies and Dairy, which are extra. At my weight, I started at 1700 calories. You eat every 3 hours or so and as you lose weight, you slowly decrease calorie count to around 1200). I also walked in upwards of 6 miles per week; as well as weight trained etc. I lost only 45-50lbs. in one year. What was disturbing, aside from the very slow weight loss, was that the longer I was on the program the more brittle my fingernails were and my hair started to fall out/thin. I ended up being diagnosed with a Sulfur Protein Deficiency, which, of course, disappeared when I stopped eating their food and went back to eating real food. And guess what? When you go off it (I.e. stop eating their food) the weight comes back on with a vengeance and adds another 10 to 20lbs. for safe keeping. This is NOT a long term, viable solution to weight loss. All it is is a poor imitation of The Food Pyramid/Diabetic calorie restriction programs. JC's dumbed it down by providing you with prepackaged, high sugar/carb, high trans-fat, Low fiber content food. (Google the research on it if you don't believe me). The fact is if you want to lose weight there are no quick fixes. You must eat REAL food, In the correct portions and expend more energy. Eat right, Eat less, move more. End of story.

posted Sep 7th, 2011 12:32 pm


sheila

awesome food, bit expensive but so worth it !

posted Aug 19th, 2011 6:22 pm


tinamiller1

I cannot believe it. I am not a sweet eater but snacker if salty or cheesey. I am not a bread for breakfast eater like pancakes or muffins. I like eggs. So I contact JC and do my plan over the phone only to have my 28 days at $641.34. I am like WHAT??? I do a menu for my husband and myself and spend at the most $50 per person per week. That is $400 a month in food. If I add my spouse on this plan you are talking my mortgage payment. What the hell? For just the food???? So the rep says well you have all these special meals due to you needs and wants. If you do more cereals it is cheaper. I am like I do not eat that stuff. I am not going to eat what I do not like. So I contact Nutrisystem and they have a 28 day plan with meals I like such as egg omlets and vege omlets and tons of great stuff and even salty and cheesey snacks, did not do desserts cuz I cannot have sugar and the plan is $243.06. Ok, I can justify that one. It will be $43.06 more per month per person. I can handle that. So I try the Nutri right and the food is good. JC tried to say well Nutri food is not as good as ours. Really??? Well I find their food pretty tasty. I have been in Nutri now for 3 months and have lost 42lbs. And get this, I do not exercise like treadmill, bike, walk. I do my normal fishing, camping and hunting and activities that I enjoy. I am not an exercise equipment person. It is boring beyond belief. Doctors keep coming up with drugs to make people lose weight and think they need to spend their time and energy on a way to make your brain think you are doing something enjoyable. Wouldn't it be cool to walk on a treadmill but think you are shopping for shoes instead? Everyone would be exercising then. Anyway, JC needs to lower their pricing cuz they are way expensive and I don't care if my friend did them and lost 20 more lbs in the same time period. She spent $478 per 28 days on food. And she is an exercise nut. So I think I got the better deal. If JC was more inline price wise with Nutri I would have done them cuz I did taste one of my friends meals and it is a little tastier than Nutri. But for the price and being on a budget, forget it.

posted Jul 12th, 2011 10:18 am


Diamond

Jenny Craig was awesome! I had lost about 66lbs over a year ago... the 30lbs came off the first three months WITHOUT EXCERSIZE!. The other 36lbs I had too exersize off. Laughing out loud. It was three months before my 19th birthday that I had decided to join it! I wish while I was a teen, my mother would've made me go to JENNY. I regret not trying it sooner. It would of saved me years of embarrasment and starvation and a lot of money on phentermine pills!!!! Jenny craig works without a doubt! You have to be really determined and motivated! If you crave something have a piece of it to satisfy yourself! GAIN CONTROL OVER YOUR MIND! IT ALL HAS TO DO WITH HOW YOU WANT TO FEEL MAKE YOURSELF FEEL. IT IS ALL IN THE MIND! I feel anything can work if you PUT YOUR MIND TO IT AND STICK TO IT! IT does not come off overnight however if you do it right you will loose at the bare min 1-3lbs a week! at LEAST 2 LBS FOR SURE, multiply 2lbs a week by 4 weeks in a month is a loss of 8lbs a month!!! that is do able!

posted Apr 4th, 2011 6:41 pm


Mo Rashlid

I loved Jenny. She was very helpful to my conquest of my obesity!

posted Apr 1st, 2011 9:50 am


deeoika

good at cheating you and getting your money.

posted Mar 19th, 2011 6:51 pm


sid

more interested in getting your money by miss guiding you. I lost $ 400 with then what a waste of time money.

posted Mar 19th, 2011 6:46 pm


Katrina

The food is great! Ediets is disgusting. Portions are small but your stomach does shrink so you don't really need more. Not all foods were wonderful but some I would eat even when not dieting. The food seems expensive but at the end of 6 weeks, I had actually saved money. I ate less, enjoyed my meals, and lost weight.

posted Jan 9th, 2011 2:25 pm


Hunter Cauthron

It's great.

posted Nov 29th, 2010 7:26 pm


Sandy

I tried the program for a few weeks and was disappointed in the lack of support from the councelors. They didnt seem to have any "real"training. They said I could tell them things I dont like and they would make sure they werent included in the foods I bought (I hate raisins and mushrooms). They assured me nothing I bought had those 2 things in them, but lots actually did. They obviously didnt know their product. Way too expensive also.

posted Nov 29th, 2010 10:56 am


Tina

I and my husband tried to do Jenny Craig together. Since the cost of their frozen meals is outragious and you have to go to the grocery to get fresh fruit and veggies anyway, I got recipes off their website and started making our own meals per their plan. We were told we could no longer use the local center for counceling and weigh in because we weren't purchased the food. It didn't matter that we paid hundreds of dollars to join the program. I am so disgusted with the lack of service from this group, I won't recommend them to anyone who seriously wants help to lose weight.

posted Nov 16th, 2010 5:16 am


K.

The food is good. But I have a huge sweet tooth and they took away all the really fresh tasting baked goods. The muffins, the lemon cake and the chocolate cake ( which delightfully looked just like the one from fast food restaurant Carl's Jr)

Well since it's been replaced by bland tasting mini loaves and "Hostess" like cup cakes that lack that restaurant quality, and 2 of the 3 cheesecakes are tasteless....

I just signed up for Nutrasystem. I've eaten their food before and it is much better for the price.

posted Nov 16th, 2010 12:06 am



 

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