Last Updated on 9 months by Isreal Olabanji DST RN
Finding a healthy way to lose weight and stay in shape is a tough order to fill for many women, especially as we age. And while there are many trendy diets to follow, not all of them produce the long-term results we desire. So, what can we do to lose weight without feeling crummy?
Well, before you resort to skipping meals and harmful crash diets, there are better ways to burn fat and feel good too. On top of the usual eat a balanced diet and exercise advice, you can always supplement your diet with a healthy meal replacement shake.
But before you start adding these shakes into your diet, there are some pros and cons to consider. After all, not all meal replacement shakes offer you the same health benefits as a regular meal, and some can be downright dreadful to drink. So, with this in mind, let’s dive in and see what a meal replacement shake is and whether they are as good as people say.
What is a Meal Replacement Shake?
When you think meal replacement, you may already assume it’s just a meal in a bottle or something similar to diet pills and other food substitutes. And you would be right – to a point.
Meal replacement shakes from Meal Replacement Review Pro are special formulas that balance your basic nutritional needs without all the calories of a regular meal. These meal replacements tend to focus on protein, carbohydrates, fiber, and major vitamins and minerals.
Sounds awesome on the surface, right? Well, to be honest, these types of things aren’t meant to replace an actual standard meal. Meal replacement shakes are more like a protein bar or a healthy snack for when you can’t have a regular meal for whatever reason.
But don’t let this fact discourage you from trying them, they do have their benefits after all.
Pros to Using a Meal Replacement Shake
Supplementing your diet can have many health benefits. And for many women, including our lovely elderly ladies out there, you may find yourself needing that extra multivitamin boost here and there to stay healthy, and that’s perfectly okay!
So, for those trying to figure out if these meal replacement shakes are worth it, let’s check out their benefits:
Great for keeping track of calories
The biggest pain for anyone trying to burn fat or even gain weight is calorie intake. Keeping tabs on your calories can be daunting for many, and who has time to do all that math every single day?
Well, meal replacement shakes make it a little easier to keep track of how many calories you take in since they often only contain 200 – 400 calories per shake. So long as you follow a healthy diet, exercise, and burn more than you consume, fat loss can be easily achievable for many women.
And for those needing to gain a few pounds without going overboard, a meal replacement shake can take that stress away with every sip.
Requires zero cooking
Let’s face it, not everyone loves to measure out and cook their meals, let alone do all the dishes afterward. Meal replacement shakes are simple in this regard, you only need to scoop out the required amount, mix it, or blend it into your favorite shake recipe, and drink.
Can help you meet nutritional demands easily
Most people are vitamin and mineral deficient in one way or another. Many people are known to be deficient in vitamin D, iron, iodine, vitamin B12, calcium, vitamin A, and magnesium. And for all you elderly ladies, this list can also include vitamin C, zinc, copper, and other micronutrients.
Meal replacement shakes come packed with many of these minerals and vitamins, so you’re essentially drinking a multivitamin.
Helps those who need a quick post-workout meal or a quick snack
While they aren’t a protein shake, meal replacement shakes can be helpful for those who need more than a protein boost. These shakes are great for substituting one or two meals and are readily digestible before and/or after a workout.
You have a lot of options to choose from
Just like there are many different protein shakes and multivitamin options, so too is the case for meal replacement shakes. If you don’t like the calorie count or taste of one there are plenty of other options you can try until you find the one that works for you.
Cons to Including Meal Replacement Shakes in Your Diet
Now that we got the delightful perks of meal replacement shakes out of the way, it’s time to look at the drawbacks that can come from using them. Meal replacement shakes aren’t perfect meal substitutes, and while they can offer some extra nutrition, they can be unhelpful in other ways. Some downsides to meal replacement shakes are:
Not a long-term healthy substitute for cooking your healthy meals
Meal replacement shakes are meant to substitute, at most, one to two meals. And these shakes aren’t meant to be used for long-term weight loss. For long-term weight goals, you should strive for a well-balanced healthy diet.
Can be too low in protein content
Meal replacement shakes can’t be good at everything, and one thing they tend to fall short on is protein. Protein is necessary for many of the body’s processes and muscle building. So, you may want to make sure your diet includes enough protein if you intend on using these shakes.
May not have enough calories for those looking to gain weight
These meal replacement shakes are low in calories, and this can be bad for those who struggle with gaining weight. Even people looking to lose a few pounds may find themselves feeling a little hungry, and this alone can cause overindulgence of food or other meal replacement alternatives.
Lack of phytochemicals and other health micronutrients
While meeting your body’s major vitamin and mineral needs is great, it doesn’t mean you’re getting all your nutrient demands met. When you eat real whole food, your body is getting all those helpful micronutrients and phytochemicals that help with digesting major vitamins and minerals, among other things. Meal replacement shakes simply don’t have these micronutrients.
Whether you’re looking to lose a few pounds, slim down your waist, or wanting to boost your muscle gains without eating a buffet, a meal replacement shake is here to help in most cases. So long as you don’t rely on them as your only food source, a meal replacement shake does have a lot to offer you.
And with this all in mind, we hope this list of pros and cons helps you determine if meal replacement shakes are the right fit for your diet and fitness goals.
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