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OPTAVIA Review 2023: Strict Monthly Weight Loss Meal Plan

Written by: Felicity Kay on Dec 18th, 2022


Formerly known as Medifast, OPTAVIA states that it’s clinically proven, and developed by a physician. It also claims that it's brand has been recommended by more than 20,000 doctors since its inception in 1980.

You'll choose between two Optimal Weight plans, both of which are designed to help you lose weight. OPTAVIA also offers an Optimal Health plan that helps you keep the pounds off after losing them.

The brand makes a lot of promises. But how effective is this weight loss plan? Is it worth sticking to such a rigid diet? I answer these questions, and more.


  • Easy to use, all-in-one meal kit for 30 days

  • Effective weight loss

  • Coaching and community support


  • Minimal editing or substitutions for your meals

  • Meals are all processed

  • A very restricted calorie deficit – you'll be eating between 800 to 1000 calories a day

What’s on the OPTAVIA Menu

OPTAVIA plans are based around Fuelings – small servings of low-calorie nutrient-dense meals, shakes, and snacks. By eating several small portions throughout the day, you spend less time craving food, and OPTAVIA snacks give you healthy alternatives to unhealthy treats.

A bowl of macaroni and cheese with spinach pesto

OPTIVA's Spinach Pesto Mac & Cheese is one of the many delicious low-calorie items on OPTIVA's menu

OPTAVIA offers two weight-loss plans. The 5 & 1 PlanⓇ gives you five Fuelings each day, and recipes for one Lean & Green meal you cook yourself. The 4 & 2 & 1 PlanⓇ provides four fuelings, two Lean & Green recipes, and one healthy snack per day.

OPTAVIA offers plans tailored for diabetes, gout, nursing mothers, seniors (65+), and teen boys and girls (13+). If you have an underlying medical condition, speak with your physician before signing up for OPTAVIA or any other weight loss diet plan.

For those seeking to maintain their weight or improve their diet, OPTAVIA offers an Optimal Health 3 & 3 PlanⓇ. On this plan, you get three Fuelings and recipes for three balanced meals. OPTAVIA recipes provide 5-7 ounces of cooked lean protein, three servings of non-starchy vegetables, and 0-2 servings of healthy fat.

For the Optimal Weight plans, the box is already set up for you but you can customize it by swapping the Fuelings if you wish. You can also select your own Fuelings for the Optimal Health 3 & 3 PlanⓇ. 

It’s not possible to add or remove any ingredients as all the food is pre-made and pre-packaged but if you check out the Shop section of the website, you can browse all the Fuelingas and see the individual nutritional facts, allergy information, and ingredients.

Each OPTAVIA client also gets an independent Coach to guide them towards better health and wellness. Since around 90% of all OPTAVIA Coaches are OPTAVIA clients themselves, they know exactly how you can use the OPTAVIA system to your best advantage.

Another great service offering tailored programs is Nutrisystem. You can enjoy this service even if you’re vegetarian or have diabetes. It also has different plans for men and women.

OPTAVIA Unboxing

Unlike other meal kit delivery services, OPTAVIA sends all of your meals either in one consignment or once a month (if you sign up for automatic shipments). Everything is clearly labeled so you’re not left wondering what each item is.

All the hot foods come in powdered form, so nothing needs to be refrigerated at all. That can be a relief, especially if the package arrives in the morning while you’re at work. On the other hand, it’s not ideal for anyone who wants to eat a more natural diet. (Though if you follow OPTAVIA’s meal plan and coaching you’ll get plenty of vegetables and healthy proteins).

Back to the packaging – everything is packaged in either cardboard or plastic (like the shaker-jar for the shakes). That means it’s even easier to recycle. Unlike some other meal kit delivery services, I could recycle pretty much everything in the OPTAVIA delivery box.

Cooking (and Eating) with OPTAVIA 

Since I couldn't edit the meals, I was a little afraid of what I might get. Not only that, but I’m also not a big fan of eating mostly processed food for an entire month.

The plan does have clear instructions on how to prepare your dinners so you can add those fresh fruits and vegetables into your diet, but the meal plan mainly consists of powdered meals that you add hot water to.

The professionals at OPTAVIA know what they’re doing in terms of getting you the vitamins and minerals you need for the lowest amount of calories, but what about the added benefits of freshly cooked food?

A canning jar full of fruits and vegetables, with a caption "OPTIVA Lean & Green Defined"

OPTIVA's Lean & Green recipes feature 3 servings of non-starchy vegetables, 5-7 ounces of lean cooked protein, and up to 2 servings of healthy fats.

OPTAVIA’s Lean & Green recipes help solve that problem by providing healthy, low-fat natural meals with lean proteins and non-starchy vegetables. This teaches you better cooking and eating habits that’ll help you keep off the weight you lose.

If you struggle with binge eating, this kind of no-guesswork dieting might be the best solution for you. OPTAVIA provides you with lessons in better eating and gives you a solid framework to build upon as you move from weight loss to weight maintenance mode.

Favorite OPTAVIA Meals

The breakfast shakes were, on the whole, delicious. They were a fun way to start the day, and I liked that the simple meal prep gave me more time to get ready for work. I could even sleep in a little, and enjoy the shake while driving to the office. Win!

a picture of a diet Cookies and Cream shake from OPTAVIA

OPTAVIA's Cookies & Cream Shake Mix is a tasty low-calorie way to stave off hunger pangs.

The snacks (like the honey pretzels and granola bars) are all ready to eat. I liked these grab-and-go options. Having quick access to these snacks in between meals kept my appetite in check and my blood sugar stable. Just as I got the tiniest bit hungry, I saw that it was time to enjoy a little treat anyway.

Nutrisystem also offers a six-serving daily plan which includes supplemental snacks, including Nutrisystem protein bars and low-glycemic shakes. Nutrisystem has been in business for almost 50 years and has a proven track record for weight loss.

Shipping & Delivery

Image of an OPTAVIA cardboard box being received.

OPTAVIA delivers its boxes monthly and you can sign up for auto-shipment.

OPTAVIA delivers its plans by the mont

Unlike other meal kit delivery services, which usually have one or two days a week that they deliver to your specific area, OPTAVIA works on a monthly basis. All orders are processed and shipped within two business days of being received.

OPTAVIA Premier members who order more than $250 worth of food receive free shipping. Premier orders between $150 and $250 pay a flat $5 shipping fee, and order under $150 pay the full UPS Ground shipping charge.

OPTAVIA also states that it can take 5-8 calendar days from your ship date for your delivery to arrive. Mine took five days. I ordered on a Monday, received a notification my order had shipped the next day, and received my order on Friday.


How to Sign Up

When you choose your plan and place your first order, OPTAVIA gives you the option of signing up for OPTAVIA Premier, its monthly auto-delivery program. With OPTAVIA Premier, your diet progress will never be interrupted. And if you want to change your monthly shipment, OPTAVIA makes modifying your order easy.

You can place one-time OPTAVIA orders without signing up for OPTAVIA Premier, but you’ll have to pay full shipping charges (which can be over $20) and won’t get 10% credit toward future deliveries on orders over $250.

You’ll receive an email from OPTAVIA seven days before your next Premier order is set to process and again four days before. This is your reminder to go into your account to make changes to your order or to change the processing date.

Managing Your Subscription

A picture of a person using the OPTAVIA app on their smartphone.

OPTAVIA's app lets you change your OPTAVIA Premier orders, handle returns, and track your deliveries.

OPTAVIA’s app gives OPTAVIA clients access to their large and ever-growing library of Lean & Green recipes and other resources. It also allows Optavia clients to manage their OPTAVIA Premier Orders and handle returns and tracking.

Within the OPTAVIA app, you can track the status of your On-demand/Premier order. To track the status of your order, you just:

  1. Log in to the OPTAVIA App with the username and password used to login into via the web.

  2. Shipping tiles at the top of your dashboard provide updates on the status of your order(s).

  3. If there are several orders, each order will have its own tile. Scroll from left to right to find the tile for a specific order.

You can also manage orders on your desktop or web browser.

Customer Service

OPTAVIA’s Client and Coach Support team, which assists with questions and concerns related to ordering, Program Plans, Products, or other OPTAVIA-related questions, is available between 8 AM to 11 PM EST on weekdays, and 9 AM to 6 PM EST on weekends.

There’s also an email address where you should receive a response in up to two business days.

When I rang, I was pretty impressed with how quickly they answered my call. I spoke to a member of the customer support team, who dealt with my issue quickly and professionally.

If you end up trying out an OPTAVIA plan and find it’s not right for you, feel free to refer to this short blog post on how to pause or cancel your orders.


Starting from

Minimum Order

Shipping Fee

$10.66 per portion

21 Fuelings/week: $60.75

$5 on orders $150 to $250, free on orders over $250,
Full price shipping on orders <$150

OPTAVIA offers two Optimal Weight plans for weight loss and an Optimal Health plan for weight maintenance and healthy eating. Across all three plans, you'll eat six times a day, made up of a mixture of snacks and meals.

OPTAVIA’s 5 & 1 PlanⓇ monthly package costs $378.25. With your first Premier order, you get five free boxes of the Fuelings of your choice, a bonus of over $100. In future orders, you’ll have to buy those extra five Fuelings yourself for the complete package.

The 4 & 2 & 1 PlanⓇ costs $423.00 and there’s a 20% discount on your first order. The 4 & 2 & 1 PlanⓇ is complete and requires neither an extra purchase of Fuelings nor Fueling freebies.

The OPTAVIA Optimal Health 3 & 3 PlanⓇ involves three supplementary OPTAVIA fuelings per day or three 7-serving boxes of Fuelings per week. Since boxes run between $20 and $22, that adds up to around $9 a day or around $260 a month.

Keep in mind that with each of these packages you’ll need to buy produce and lean proteins for one or more meals a day.

Nutrisystem’s plans are comparably priced with OPTAVIA, and also arrive in monthly packages. Our Nutrisystem reviewer was impressed by the meals she received and advised, “If you have a busy lifestyle, this is an extremely effective way of sticking to a weight-loss diet.”

The Bottom Line

OPTAVIA is a time-tested and dieter-proven weight-loss system designed by a company with over 40 years of experience in the weight loss industry.

If you’re looking to get significant results fast, OPTAVIA’s Optimal Weight plans can help you lose weight without skipping out on nutrition or starving yourself.

If you’re looking to keep weight off or just want to eat healthier, the Optimal Health plan can provide you with healthy recipes and tasty low-calorie snacks to keep you full and help you resist temptation.


How much does OPTAVIA cost?

It is hard to compare OPTAVIA to other meal delivery services because it’s an all-encompassing plan that covers most of your food needs for the month. An OPTAVIA Premier subscription to the Fuelings for the Optimal Health 3 & 3 PlanⓇ will cost around $260 per month, while the Optimal Weight 4 & 2 & 1 PlanⓇ and 5 & 1 PlanⓇ will cost you around $400 to $500 a month. 

What is the OPTAVIA diet?

OPTAVIA plans provide small servings of low-calorie nutrient-dense meals, shakes, and snacks to keep you feeling full all day. Each OPTAVIA plan also includes healthy recipes you cook yourself, to get you in the habit of healthy cooking and eating.

Is OPTAVIA safe?

OPTAVIA has been recommended by thousands of doctors and is a safe and healthy way to lose weight on a low-calorie but nutrient-dense diet. If you have any underlying medical condition, consult your physician before signing up for OPTAVIA or any other diet plan.

How do you cancel OPTAVIA?

Unlike many other meal delivery services, OPTAVIA only takes cancellations by phone.  The OPTAVIA Client & Coach support team is available between 8 AM to 11 PM EST on weekdays, and 9 AM to 6 PM EST on weekends and can be reached at 1-888-OPTAVIA (1-888-678-2842).

About The Author

Felicity Kay
Staff Writer, Delivery Rank
Felicity loves and lives for food, and new culinary experiences in general.
When shes not out walking her dogs, shes trying out the coolest new restaurants and take out in the local area - one day she might even learn to cook!
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