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Noom and Jenny Craig are two programs designed to support weight loss.
While both share some similarities, including the option for personal coaching, they have several key differences.
This article takes a closer look at Noom and Jenny Craig to see how they compare.
While the end goal of achieving your ideal weight is the same for Noom and Jenny Craig, the companies use different approaches to help you get there.
Noom is a digital platform that’s largely app-based. You can enroll on a monthly basis at a minimum, or you can sign up for an annual auto-renewing plan. There are also options in between, for various periods of months.
- daily nutrition lessons
- virtual support from a health coach
- an online recipe library
- access to an online support group
- a simple, color-coded system to help you assess foods based on calorie density
Jenny Craig, in contrast, offers preportioned meals and snacks. You can start off by paying on a weekly basis, which allows you to test it out. Jenny Craig has three different meal plans, some of which include:
- an extensive menu of prepared meals, with options for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as snacks, shakes, and desserts
- virtual or in-person coaching with a Jenny Craig consultant
- activity plans
- a quality-of-life assessment
Though there are some similarities between the two programs, they also differ in terms of price, menu options, features, and long-term effectiveness.
|Basics||• mobile app with tools to support weight loss|
• builds a custom plan based on your needs and goals
• virtual support from health coaches
• available in 5 languages in countries with access to Google Play or the Apple App Store (with certain exceptions)
|• commercial weight loss program that delivers prepared meals and snacks|
• offers various plans, including one that provides personal coaching
• available in the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and Puerto Rico
|Menu options||• no foods are restricted|
• foods with a lower calorie density are encouraged
• offers a library of recipes online
|• menu with 100+ prepared items, including meals, snacks, shakes, and desserts|
• low carb plan available for type 2 diabetes
|Cost||• $60 for 1-month subscription|
• additional savings available for longer subscriptions
|• Simple Meal Plan: $13.99/day|
• Essential Meal Plan:$21.99/day
• Max Up Weight Loss Plan: $29/day
|Effectiveness||• supports long-term weight loss via dietary and lifestyle modifications||• may aid weight loss, based on research|
• members can expect to lose 1–2 pounds (0.5–1 kg) per week
|Benefits||• virtual support team for personalized guidance and accountability|
• flexible and not overly restrictive
• customized based on your goals and needs
|• simple and convenient|
• certain plans offer personal coaching
• may support blood sugar management and heart health
|Downsides||• no meals or snacks provided, which may be a downside for some people|
• more expensive than other programs
• requires smartphone or tablet
• completely virtual
|• relies on processed foods|
• may be difficult to transition back to your typical diet
• limited options for certain dietary restrictions
Here’s a brief overview of how these two programs stack up against each other.
Noom is a mobile health app that helps promote long-lasting, sustainable weight loss.
It asks a series of questions and builds a personalized plan for you based on your medical history, activity level, food preferences, and weight loss goals.
It also offers access to a virtual support team, including a group coach, goal specialist, and online support group.
The app allows you to log your intake and track your daily activity to help you stay on track.
It also provides additional resources, including educational articles and a recipe library.
As a virtual program, Noom is widely available in most countries with access to Google Play or the Apple App Store. Still, China, Cuba, Georgia, Sudan, Serbia, Myanmar, the Solomon Islands, Macau, Iran, and Liechtenstein are exceptions to the latter.
Plus, Noom is available in five languages.
Jenny Craig is a commercial diet that aims to help simplify weight loss by delivering an array of fully prepared meals and snacks.
It’s available in the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and Puerto Rico.
Certain plans also offer personal coaching with a Jenny Craig consultant, with either virtual or in-person meetings each week.
Here are the different plans offered by Jenny Craig:
- Simple Meal Plan: provides 7 breakfasts and 7 seven lunches per week
- Essential Meal Plan: provides 7 breakfasts, 7 lunches, and 7 dinners per week and includes free delivery
- Rapid Results Max Meal Plan: provides 7 breakfasts, 7 lunches, 7 dinners, 7 protein bars, and 7 snacks or desserts per week and includes free delivery and personal coaching
Jenny Craig also encourages members to fit in regular physical activity and enjoy 1–2 additional healthy snacks per day to help round out their diet.
Once you achieve your weight loss goals, you can transition to a maintenance plan, which involves transitioning from eating only Jenny Craig meals to preparing your own healthy meals at home.
Where can you buy Jenny Craig food?
One thing that’s both a downside and upshot of Jenny Craig is that users will get at least some of their meals from the company. Unlike Noom, the program isn’t designed to work with whatever you currently eat.
However, there are plan-dependent options that make getting Jenny Craig meals easier. You can opt to have them delivered to your door, or pick them up from your local Jenny Craig Weight Loss Center
Here’s what you can find on the menu for each program.
Noom encourages users to select foods with a lower calorie density, meaning they contain a low number of calories relative to their volume or weight.
On the company’s website, detailed information on the calorie density of certain ingredients can be found, and foods are classified as green, yellow, or red.
Foods that are green and yellow should make up the majority of your diet, including ingredients like fruits, vegetables, proteins, whole grains, and legumes.
However, keep in mind that Noom doesn’t eliminate or exclude any foods.
Instead, it encourages users to enjoy their favorite foods in moderation as part of a balanced diet.
Jenny Craig has a large menu with over 100 prepared items, including entrées, breakfast dishes, snacks, desserts, bars, and shakes.
Each item on the menu is accompanied by a detailed list of ingredients and nutrition facts, which can be useful for those with a food allergy or intolerance.
You can easily mix and match your favorite items from the menu to create your own custom meal plan each week.
The company also offers a low carb plan specifically for people with type 2 diabetes.
Keep in mind that options may be limited for other eating patterns, including vegan, vegetarian, kosher, halal, and gluten-free diets.
Here’s how each program varies when it comes to cost.
Noom is a subscription-based service and offers plans starting at $60 for a 1-month membership.
You can also prepay for several months at a time to get additional savings.
For example, an annual membership costs $199, which translates to around $16.58 per month.
The company also offers a 7-day trial. During the trial, you can pay however much you want, starting at just $0.50.
Jenny Craig has three plans, which range in terms of price:
- Simple Meal Plan: $13.99 per day
- Essential Meal Plan: $21.99 per day
- Max Up Weight Loss Plan: $29 per day
The Essential Meal Plan and Max Up Weight Loss Plan also include free shipping.
With the Simple Meal Plan, free shipping is provided when you order at least 2 weeks’ worth of meals.
Optional add-ons like protein shakes, snacks, and desserts are available for an extra fee.
Studies show that both Noom and Jenny Craig may be effective for long-term weight loss.
While research on the effectiveness of Noom specifically is limited, some studies suggest that it may be an effective tool for long-term weight loss.
For example, one study in 70 women found that using a digital coaching program like Noom for 8 weeks led to significantly greater weight and fat loss than a control group (
Another study in almost 36,000 people noted that approximately 78% of Noom users reported weight loss while using the app over an average of 9 months (
Plus, it focuses on making dietary and lifestyle modifications, which can help support long-term, sustainable weight loss (
According to Jenny Craig, members can expect to lose an average of 1–2 pounds (0.5–1 kg) per week while following the program.
Several studies have found that Jenny Craig may aid weight loss.
For example, a study in 133 women observed that those who followed Jenny Craig for 12 weeks lost an average of 11.8 pounds (5.3 kg) (
Another large review of 39 studies showed that people who followed Jenny Craig for 1 year achieved 4.9% greater weight loss than those who received brief education or behavioral counseling (
The program may also be effective for maintaining weight loss for longer periods.
In a 2010 study, women who used Jenny Craig weighed nearly 8% less than their initial body weight 2 years after starting the program (
Both diets may also be associated with a few other benefits.
Noom provides access to online health coaches and support groups, which may be useful for those who prefer personalized guidance and having a team to help hold them accountable.
Unlike other diet programs, it also builds a custom plan tailored to your needs and goals. This plan is based on information that you provide when signing up.
Additionally, Noom is much less restrictive than other diets and doesn’t cut out any food groups or ingredients.
Although it encourages dieters to focus on foods with a lower calorie density, it also allows you to enjoy other high calorie foods in moderation.
Like Noom, Jenny Craig may be a good option for those who prefer having social support, as certain plans offer personal coaching sessions with a Jenny Craig consultant.
It’s also convenient and easy to follow, with little to no food prep or cooking required.
Plus, it may be linked to improvements in other aspects of health.
Additionally, one 2013 study in 417 women noted that following the Jenny Craig diet for 24 months significantly reduced inflammation and cholesterol, high levels of which are risk factors for heart disease (
It’s important to note that although researchers collected and analyzed data independently, this study was supported by Jenny Craig.
There are several downsides associated with each program.
Although Noom offers an extensive library of recipes, it doesn’t provide any meals or snacks as part of its program, which may be a downside for those looking for the convenience of a weight loss meal delivery program.
It also requires a bit more time and effort than other programs, as dieters are encouraged to track and log their physical activity and food intake each day.
With individual monthly plans starting at $60, Noom can also be somewhat expensive compared with similar programs.
Because it’s entirely digital and requires the use of a tablet or smartphone equipped with internet, it may also not be the best option for those who don’t have access to these devices or aren’t tech-savvy.
Finally, all communication with your support team is entirely virtual, which may not be ideal for those who prefer in-person interactions.
Jenny Craig relies mostly on highly processed, preportioned foods and ingredients.
Plus, eating mostly prepackaged foods may make it more challenging to transition back to your typical diet and increase your risk of weight regain.
The program can also be expensive and difficult to follow in the long term, with plans starting at $13.99 per day.
Additionally, the program offers limited selections for certain dietary restrictions, including vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, halal, or kosher diets.
Here is a closer look at each company’s customer reviews and brand reputation.
Noom is accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and currently holds an A+ rating, which is based on factors like the company’s history of complaints and its business practices.
On TrustPilot, Noom has an average rating of 4.4 out of 5 stars, based on over 59,000 customer reviews.
Positive reviews on TrustPilot note that the Noom app is easy to use and effective, with some people also stating that the daily lessons and individualized support help increase motivation.
Of course, there are less than stellar reviews, too. Some report issues with billing errors and app functionality. A few customers note that the lessons can feel redundant or oversimplified, which may make the app less suitable for folks with advanced nutrition knowledge.
In 2020, Noom was involved in a class action lawsuit, which alleged that the company misled customers into signing up for a “risk-free trial” without disclosing its auto-renewal and cancellation policies. In 2022, Noom agreed to a settlement of $56 million.
Unlike Noom, Jenny Craig is not accredited by the BBB, though it does hold an A- rating from the organization.
Jenny Craig has just two reviews on TrustPilot. However, there’s more information on it through Consumer Affairs, where the company holds a rating of 3.8 out of 5 stars, based on 783 customer reviews.
Many reviewers on Consumer Affairs report having a positive experience with the ease and convenience that Jenny Craig offers. They also praise several key features of the program, like the personal coaching.
But some reviewers note that:
- The portions are small.
- The meals are not filling or flavorful enough.
- Any weight loss achieved on the program is not sustainable long-term.
A few people also mention experiencing digestive issues while following the program, while others note that the food is high in sodium and pricey.
Jenny Craig has been involved in a few lawsuits over the years, including several related to advertising violations, false and misleading claims in campaigns, and unsolicited text messages.
In addition to Noom and Jenny Craig, there are several other weight loss programs available that you may want to consider. Here’s a comparison chart:
|Noom||Jenny Craig||Weight Watchers||Nutrisystem||Optavia|
|Price||$60 per month, with options, from a 1-month subscription up to a year-long subscription||• Simple Meal Plan:$13.99 per day|
• Essential Meal Plan: $21.99 per day
• Max Up Weight Loss Plan: $29 per day
|• Digital: $9.92 per week with 1-month subscription|
• Unlimited workshops + Digital: $15 per week with 1-month subscription
• 1-on-1 Coaching + Digital: $11.08 per week with 1-month subscription
|• Basic: $9.99 per day|
• Uniquely Yours: $12.14 per day
• Uniquely Yours Max+: $13.57 per day
|$3.02–$3.18 per serving for kits|
|Menu options||• no foods restricted|
• foods with a lower calorie density encouraged
• offers a library of recipes online
|menu with 100+ prepared items, including meals, snacks, shakes, and desserts||• doesn’t provide prepared foods|
• uses a points-based system to encourage low calorie, nutrient-dense foods
• offers online recipe library
|offers 150+ prepared items, including meals and snacks||• offers a variety of soup and shake mixes |
• also offers prepared meals and snacks
|Diets||can be used with any diet plan||low carb plan available||can be used with any diet plan||diabetes-friendly and vegetarian plans available||offers plans for older adults, people who are nursing, and individuals with diabetes or gout|
|Shipping||—||United States, Puerto Rico, and Canada||—||continental United States||United States and U.S. territories|
|Effectiveness||supports long-term weight loss via dietary and lifestyle modifications||research shows it may aid weight loss — members can expect to lose 1–2 pounds (0.5–1 kg) per week||could increase long-term weight loss by promoting healthy habits||may aid short-term weight loss, but more research needed on long-term effectiveness||could promote short-term weight loss, but more research needed|
It’s always best to consult with a doctor or dietitian before starting any diet or weight loss program. It’s especially important if you have underlying health conditions or dietary restrictions. A healthcare professional can help provide more detailed guidance and recommendations based on your needs.
You’ll also want to seek a medical professional’s opinion if you experience any adverse symptoms while using a weight loss program.
Watch out for digestive issues, dizziness, and headaches, as some commercial weight loss programs have been linked to these symptoms (
If you experience these symptoms, discontinue your diet immediately and talk with a doctor to address any concerns.
Offering an array of prepackaged, fully prepared meals and snacks, Jenny Craig is a convenient and easy option for weight loss, especially for those who are short on time or hoping to minimize their weekly meal prep.
On the other hand, Noom focuses on making changes to your diet and lifestyle to support weight loss and better health.
Although it requires a greater time commitment, this may be more effective for promoting long-term, sustainable weight loss.
Plus, Noom is more widely available internationally.
Jenny Craig and Noom are two diet programs designed to help increase weight loss.
Jenny Craig provides fully prepared meals and snacks and offers personal coaching with certain plans.
Meanwhile, Noom is a mobile health app with tools to support weight loss, including access to a virtual support team.
While both can be effective for weight loss, Noom focuses on making dietary and lifestyle changes, which may be a better option for long-term weight management.