If you are wondering if meal replacement shakes for weight loss are for you, you have come to the right place!
I have been drinking healthy meal replacement shakes for 5 years now and I have reviewed just about all the different meal replacement shakes for weight loss that are out there. What I have discovered are 1) meal replacement shakes for weight loss can be extremely healthy and good for your body 2) they can actually save you money on groceries 3) they can be very convenient 4) they can be a very good choice especially compared to the alternatives, and 5) they can be absolutely delicious!
What To Look For In Meal Replacement Shakes For Weight Loss
1) Weight Loss: A meal replacement shake is just that…it replaces a meal! If you are looking to lose weight, it is recommended you eat 5 small meals a day, right? Take for example, a 44 year old female who is 5’9″, currently weighs 167, wants to reach 150 pounds and has a moderate activity level (which means exercising several times a week pushing relatively hard). She should consume about 1,781 calories in order to lose 1 pound a week (women should never consume less than 1,200 calories a day and men 1,500 calories). Divide that number by 5 and you can have around 356 calories a meal. You only need to subtract 500 calories daily to lose one pound a week. Meal replacement shakes for weight loss can easily be substituted as a low calorie option.
According to a scientific study done by Steven Heymsfield, MD from Columbia University, meal replacement shakes for weight loss do indeed work. Heymsfield and colleagues pooled data from 6 different studies and found the overall weight loss for the groups that were on meal replacement shakes were greater than the groups that just followed a low calorie diet.
2) Nutrition: Good meal replacement shakes for weight loss should consist of 1) good nutrients and 2) good combination of protein, carbs and fat. You can tell by looking at the supplement facts (nurtition label) of your meal replacement shake. Ideally, your meal replacement shakes for weight loss should have around 20% of your daily value (I just divided 100% by 5 meals…didn’t need the calculator for that). In addition, make sure your meal replacement shakes for weight loss aren’t just a “protein” shake. It needs to consist of a balance of protein, carbs and fat (for weight loss, 50% protein, 30% carbs and 20% fat).
Keep in mind that meal replacement shakes for weight loss are not evaluated by the FDA so it’s important to ensure the manufacturer of your meal replacement shakes’ claims are backed by clinical research and are a reputable company.
3) Types of Protein: Most meal replacements shakes for weight loss consist of whey or soy protein (different versions). I don’t understand why most meal replacement shakes for weight loss mostly consists of these two types of proteins. To me, this is HUGELY important. Why? Well, because I’m lactose intolerant. I don’t care if the cow was grass fed with no added hormones. If I consume whey, I get gassy and bloated. Yah, yah, yah… I’ve been told the lactose was “taken” out of the whey or there was a lactase supplement added to remove the side effects. When I tried them, I still felt it. Thankfully, there are other options (which are better, anyways) and they are rice protein and pea protein. Rice and Pea protein is not only a better choice (than soy) for lactose intolerant people and vegans, but it is considered to be very easily digestible, high in protein, vitamins and minerals and is ideal for hypoglycemics and diabetics. Just on the fact alone that it is more easily digested (which means it get absorbed into the blood stream and feeds your body better), I would recommend meal replacement shakes for weight loss to consist of pea and/or rice protein.
4) Sugar: If you look at most meal replacement shakes for weight loss, they contain sugar or sweeteners. Most contain Splenda or Sucralose. I personally haven’t seen any sweetened with aspartame. But still, splenda or sucralose is an artifical sweetener and there is controversy surrounding them. Your ideal meal replacement shakes for weight loss should be sweetened with Stevia or Xylitol. I personally cannot handle splenda. You know those “sugar free” ice creams and yogurts? Those that are sweetened with stevia also make me gassy and bloated (you may be thinking I’m just a ball of mess….but look in the mirror! All kidding aside, I noticed these side effects as I was starting to make changes to my diet. I bet when you started paying closer attention, you will notice a difference too).
5) Value: Think about this…if you are going to go get a value meal at McDonald’s, you would expect, well, a value! If you decided to choose a healthier option, say like, Boston Market….you wouldn’t be surprised to pay a little more for better quality food, right? Well, the good news is….with meal replacement shakes for weight loss you can get all the vitamins, minerals, enzymes, prebiotics, and more in one fell swoop for a price cheaper than an extra value meal. The average cost for a container of meal replacement shakes for weight loss range from $30 – $115 for a one-month supply. Towards the end of this article, I will demonstrate how I add enough things to my meal replacement shakes for weight loss that it lasts me into 2 or 3 “meals”.
6) Convenience: Depending on when you make your meal replacement shakes for weight loss, you can simply make enough for two or three meals, put them in containers with a secure lid and stick them in the fridge. When it’s time to eat, you just run to the fridge, grab and drink. When I’m out and about, I have one of those convenient coolers that you unzip, throw in a couple of frozen ice block and my meal replacement shakes for weight loss are nice and cool when it’s time to eat. I really appreciate having one especially when I’m driving around, I’m hungry and my only choice is a greasy fatty burger or chicken sandwich that come from who knows where (and is likely pumped with hormones).
7) Delicious: Okay, the number one reason I would have to think that most people haven’t incorporated meal replacement shakes for weight loss into their daily regimine is because they don’t think they taste good. Like I said before, I have been drinking meal replacement meal replacement shakes for weight loss for 5 years now. I rarely go a day without drinking at least one. If you get bored, you can incorporate different recipes so you have a variety of different flavors.
Here is what I do when I make my meal replacement shakes for weight loss. I throw in a small handful of frozen fruit. I buy a bag of the frozen berries or mixed fruit from the grocery store. I ALWAYS put in a banana…they are high in fiber and they make my meal replacement shakes for weight loss smoother. I put in a glass full of water (sometimes I do half a glass of water and half a glass of almond milk– or regular milk if that’s what you drink) and turn the blender on low. While that’s all getting churned, I throw in about a quarter cup of oats for additional fiber so I feel full longer. I then add a couple scoops of my stevia-sweetened, rice/pea protein. Since I am not very good at eating all the greens I need to throughout the day, I throw in a scoop of stevia-sweetened supergreens (which I also drink by itself, it so good). At the very end, I throw in a small handfull of almonds. Can you think of what you would put in your meal replacement shakes for weight loss? I would love to know what you think.
For many of us, meal replacement shakes for weight loss is just what we need to jump start our path to weight loss. Most importantly, it is also a great way to give us just the encouragement we need to make permanent changes in the way we eat. If you are looking for a great way to making a lifelong choice of healthy eating, meal replacement shakes for weight loss are the perfect solution.
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