It takes consideration to select a meal replacement smoothie or beverage. It goes beyond simply blending your meals and referring to them as a “liquid diet” or even just depriving yourself of whole meals. Your body should receive all the nutrients it requires from a meal replacement smoothie along with high-quality calories.
The use of meal-replacement beverages for weight loss has a long history. However, picking the best one for your body should take into account more factors than just a stylish logo or advertisement.
Furthermore, meal replacement shakes are healthy for the body, there are many varying perspectives. There is a misconception that meal replacement smoothies are nothing more than sophisticated processed sugars. That, however, is really an urban legend.
What then is the reality? Shakes used as meal replacements: are they healthy?
Let us simplify things for you.
What’s in a milkshake used to replace meals?
Nutrients! All the nutrients your body needs to stay energised and nourished throughout the day are included in meal replacement shakes. Meal replacement shakes, whether they are milk- or soy-based, focus on maximising your calorie intake because protein makes up the majority of their composition. This high protein intake benefits weight loss since high protein diets have been demonstrated to enhance the growth of lean muscle mass, encourage the removal of body fat, and lessen weight fluctuations.
The foundation of any fitness and wellness journey is protein. Not only can eating a diet with the appropriate proportion of protein help you build muscle, but it also helps you lose weight. What happens when you get enough protein each day?
- Optimal skin, nerve, blood, ligament, and bone cell development
- Enhances bone density and muscular mass Promotes the growth of healthy skin, hair, and nails
- helps with weight loss and maintenance objectives by enhancing sleep and mental health.
- helps you minimise your everyday calorie intake and appetite
- keeps you active as you age and strengthens your immune system
The purpose of a meal replacement drink is to provide your body with the nutrients and calories it needs to function without the other bad components. So, when deciding between meal replacement brand options, the nutrient ratio is crucial.
A good meal substitute beverage should contain at least 33% of the recommended daily allowance of vitamins and minerals.
A perfect meal replacement beverage should include:
- a minimum of 15g of protein per serving (or 25% of the daily recommended requirement)
- 3g or more of fibre per serving
- 10g or less of sugar
- not using hydrogenated oils or artificial sweeteners
Testing by a third party and quality certifications
You naturally want to know if the things you are using are safe to use and deliver on their promises. Some third-party certifications to look for in meal replacement shakes and beverages include:
- Good Manufacturing Practices for Safe Quality Food (SQF) (GMP)
- Registration with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
- Certified by the National Sanitation Foundation (NSF)
- Numerous meal replacement beverages also contain vegan, non-GMO, and anti-animal cruelty components.
Shakes that replace meals: won’t they make me fat?
Despite what many people think, meal replacement shakes help you lose weight! Whey protein supplements help active people who engage in regular exercise meet their protein needs and assist muscle growth and repair. On the other hand, meal replacement shakes concentrate on giving you low-carb, high-protein nutrition to speed up your metabolism. Additionally, meal replacement shakes with plant-based protein will provide you with the necessary protein for your body as well as fewer calories, which is better for your general health.
Nutrition Facts label
Ignore the statements on the front label and jump straight to the Nutrition Facts label, which is typically on the back of the container, to make the best decision.
Four things to look for on the nutrition facts label are:
- Calorie range: Ideally, meal substitutes should have 150–250 calories. Being able to maintain low calories and high nutrition levels is one of the biggest advantages of a good meal replacement.
- Composition of macronutrients: Macronutrients include carbs, fats, and proteins. A meal replacement should ideally contain 5 grammes of fat per serving. Additionally, good choices should have at least 15 grammes of protein per meal. This protein needs to come from a reliable source; ideally, it should be either plant-based protein or whey isolate (a highly filtered type of whey protein). Whey concentrates and soy-based products should be avoided. Last but not least, a meal replacement should have no more than 25 grammes of carbohydrates per serving and at least 3-5 grammes of fibre.
- Micronutrient composition: Each meal replacement serving should contain at least one-third of the daily required amounts of vitamins and minerals (also known as micronutrients). This makes sure that your body receives what it requires each day.
- Avoid additives: A excellent meal replacement will have the appropriate number of calories, macronutrients, and micronutrients that you require. Additionally, it won’t contain any extra ingredients you don’t need, such as high fructose corn syrup, added sugar, or fillers.
Additionally, it’s crucial to pick a meal replacement drink that will keep you satisfied until it’s time for your next meal. After only an hour or so of drinking your smoothie, you might be more inclined to nibble on unhealthy items. Typically, shakes with carbs, protein, and fat are a solid option for keeping you full between meals. The greatest meal replacement smoothie may require a taste test if your options have been down to a few. Reviews can help you figure out which shakes are the most popular among consumers, but everyone has somewhat different taste preferences. As a result, tasting a few options before picking the ones you like best may help you make the ideal decision.