11 Nutrisystem Terms You Absolutely Need to Know

Article posted in: Nutrisystem

The Nutrisystem weight loss program is effective for so many people because it teaches a healthful new way to think about eating. When you begin your plan, you’ll also learn a few Nutrisystem terms that can help you make the right choices for your goals. For this reason, we’ve compiled a simple glossary of the terms you’ll need to know, in order to get comfortable with your plan and familiar with the Nutrisystem philosophy.

Use these Nutrisystem terms as a guide for getting to your ideal weight:

1. SmartCarbs


Carbohydrates are essential sources of energy for your body, but not all carbs are equal. Simple carbohydrates tend to be high in sugars, but low in fiber and other nutrients, so your body burns through them fast. The result: You’ll feel hungry long before your next meal. SmartCarbs, on the other hand, are nutrient-rich sources of carbohydrates that rank low to medium on the Glycemic Index. They’re digested more slowly, keeping you feeling fuller longer. All SmartCarbs contain 80 to 120 calories and at least one gram of fiber in each serving.

The difference between SmartCarbs and PowerFuels is all broken down here! >

2. PowerFuels


“PowerFuel” is one of the most important Nutrisystem terms. They are high-quality lean proteins and healthy fats that will keep you strong and satisfied while you lose weight. One PowerFuel contains 80 to 120 calories and at least five grams of protein OR at least eight grams of total fat (but no more than four grams of saturated fat).

Curious about the most popular PowerFuel picks? Click here to see the list! >

3. Extras

extra nutrisystem terms

Adding flavor to your food can also pile on calories without you even realizing it. To help you become more aware of this, Nutrisystem categorizes such foods as “Extras,” and recommends that you limit yourself to three servings per day. You can use Extras to spice up your meals or satisfy a craving with each containing 10 to 35 calories per serving.

Learn the difference between Extras and “Free Foods” right here! >

4. Non-Starchy Vegetables

non-starchy vegetables nutrisystem terms

Pound for pound, vegetables are the most nutrient-dense foods because they’re loaded with vitamins and minerals, but low in calories and fat. This makes non-starchy vegetables another one of the essential Nutrisystem terms to know. These veggies are also high in fiber and low in sugar. (Starchy vegetables have more sugars, so they’re classified as SmartCarbs.) Nutrisystem recommends that you eat at least four servings of non-starchy vegetables each day, but non-starchy vegetables are unlimited, so you can eat as much of them as you want! A serving of non-starchy vegetables is one cup raw or half of a cup cooked. To keep your taste buds satisfied and your body well-nourished, eat a wide variety of these foods.

Here are 10 of our favorite non-starchy vegetables that make weight loss easier! >

5. Flex Meals and Flex Snacks

flex meals

The delicious meals and snacks that Nutrisystem has prepared and portioned for you are the foundation of your weight loss plan. But, after the first week of your program, you will begin learning how to choose and make your own food. This is in the form of Flex meals and snacks. Flex meals and snacks help you get ready you for a lifetime of eating well and maintaining your healthy weight (long after Nutrisystem).

Using the simple guidelines provided, you’ll create two healthy Flex breakfasts, lunches, dinners and snacks each week. Check out the graph above for a quick overview of what your Flex meals should contain. Please note that if you are on a personalized program or use NuMi SmartAdapt™, these numbers will not apply to you. Find your specific PowerFuel and SmartCarb goals in the NuMi app.

Click here for the full details on Flex meals!>

6. My Daily 3

walk daily 3 nutrisystem terms

Physical activity stimulates your metabolism and tones your muscles, helping you to burn calories and shed pounds. That’s why Nutrisystem’s experts recommend that you are active for at least 150 minutes each week. Now, that doesn’t mean you have to spend hours exercising every day. My Daily 3 is an easy way to integrate physical activity into your life.

In three quick, 10-minute sessions, you can reap the benefits of regular exercise, without making a commitment to a rigid, 30-minute workout routine. You can get in 10 minutes of activity before you start your day, 10 minutes at lunch and 10 minutes in the evening if you so choose. Feel free to fit the sessions into any times that work with your schedule! A brisk walk is the simplest of ways to get active, but you can also do yardwork, house work, go for a bike ride, climb stairs, stretch, do yoga or even dance. Just keep moving and feel yourself getting healthier.

Really hate exercise? Get some suggestions here! >

7. NuMi

numi app on smart phone

Keeping a food diary makes a significant difference in your chances of achieving weight loss success. The NuMi app (say it “new me”) from Nutrisystem makes it easy for you to track your daily diet, water intake and physical activity. The free app, available for iPhone or Android, is simple to use and offers lots of other fun and helpful features, such as daily meal reminders, lists of favorite foods and syncing with fitness devices to capture valuable health data.

8. The Leaf

leaf nutrisystem terms

Your source for information and inspiration, The Leaf is the online destination for everyone on a weight loss journey. You’ll find recipes and ideas for healthy eating, reports on the most popular Nutrisystem foods and articles like this one to fill you in on everything you need to know about Nutrisystem terms and staying on track with your goal. The Leaf is updated daily, so check it often for new, relevant and entertaining information.

9. A La Carte

different Nutrisystem food for the Uniquely Yours Max plan

Your Nutrisystem program provides you with meals and snacks that fit the plan you’ve selected, but once you discover how delicious the food is, you may be craving even more it. That’s the time to visit the A La Carte shop, where you can order extras of your favorite meals, as well as handy sampler packs. There’s even one created just for chocolate lovers. The A La Carte option also makes it possible to order more Nutrisystem shakes, for a quick and energizing boost anytime you need a pick-me-up. Keeping a stash of Nutrisystem foods like these in your office, briefcase or car ensures that you’re ready and able to make a smart choice wherever and whenever hunger strikes.

Shop our awesome A La Carte selection here! >

10. Nutrisystem Program

lean13 best diet plan nutrisystem terms

The latest program from Nutrisystem helps to jumpstart your weight loss and keeps the results coming. In a clinical study, subjects lost up to 18 pounds in their first two months.* It gets you going quickly with the low calorie first week on the meal plan. Check out all of our weight loss plans here! >

Throughout your weight loss journey, you’ll have access to the free NuMi app, The Leaf and our amazing Weight Loss Coaches that are available seven days a week. Move rapidly on the path to your goal, utilizing our support and resources all the way to success.

11. Week 1

nutrisystem terms

The first week of a new weight loss program can be the most critical. Your body needs to recalibrate to a different way of eating, and you’re eager to see results. That’s why the nutrition experts at Nutrisystem developed a special first week on Nutrisystem for your first seven days. It is lower in calories and designed to help you lose weight within the first week,** so you feel excited and ready for the road ahead.

Week 1 on Nutrisystem is designed to reboot your body and kickstart your weight loss. This first week includes Nutrisystem meals, snacks and shakes each day. Check out a week 1 sample menu here! > If you are on a personalized program, be sure to download the NuMi® app for your Week 1 sample menu.

Each day during week 1, you will enjoy a Nutrisystem breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack from your order. You will also receive seven Nutrisystem shakes that are to be used as your morning snack during this first week. Plus, you get to add in unlimited non-starchy vegetables. Going into week two, you will get to start adding in PowerFuels, SmartCarbs and Extras. Please note that if you are on the Nutrisystem Diabetes plan, you will not have this separate Week 1 plan due to the low calorie level. Instead, you will follow the meal plan provided in your Quick Start Guide and NuMi app.

*In a study on the standard plan, average weight loss was 12.9 lbs. in first 2 months.

**Results vary based on starting weight and program adherence.

**IMPORTANT INFORMATION: Continuing this meal plan for more than one week in any consecutive four-week period may lead to health complications and is not recommended. If you have diabetes, are under 18 years of age, are pregnant or a nursing mother, or are following a specialized diet for health issues, you may not use this meal plan. Please consult with your physician before beginning Your First Week on Nutrisystem or any other weight loss program. Please be sure to eat all of the food that’s recommended for this program. Failure to follow the program protocol and eat all recommended food may result in developing health complications.