Meal Replacement Shakes - Reality Check

Utsav Agrawal
Utsav Agrawal

 | 1 minute to read
Nutrition

First of all, let me make a clear distinction between whey protein shakes and meal replacement shakes. The purpose of taking whey protein shake is to complete the protein requirement of the day and in no way, it is a replacement of a wholesome meal. Whereas meal replacement shakes have few grams of protein but not that much that we consider them as a source of protein. It has a mixture of some vitamins and minerals along with dietary fiber to keep you full for some time. Generally, they have between 200-400 kcal and claims to be an actual replacement of your entire wholesome meal

Do they make you lose weight? You might lose weight by replacing your meal with these shakes but that does not mean you should do it in the first place. The basis of fat loss is creating a deficit in your total daily intake of calories and even though companies claim that you don't have to count calories and still lose weight by consuming these shakes- the reality is they are tricking you to get into a deficit. Let me make you understand by an example, let's say your maintenance calories are 2500 and you are eating that much, now you replace two of your major meal that was accounting let's say 1500 kcal with meal replacement shake (600 approx calories in two serving), creating a deficit of around 900 calories. Now you must be thinking then its a good thing that we get to lose weight with it but there is more to it. Often with these shakes, you create a bigger deficit which leads to extra muscle loss and also even though they have some fiber but will not keep you full for a longer period and keep you starving. And the most important thing for a successful weight loss is to carry forward the changes you bring during the weight loss journey. Ask yourself, can you sustain on these shakes for your entire life? of course not. And yes they don't have any such magical ingredients that will help you lose weight as such. Even if you are looking for something that you can have it on the go and does not need any preparation and provide good nutrition, the better choice would be whey protein or any good protein bars. References - 1.https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/30923163/ 2.https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3869862/ 3https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22411370

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