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Meal Replacements for Weight Loss

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About Meal Replacements for Weight Loss

Meal replacements are a convenient way to reduce your energy intake for weight management or fat loss. Ideally, only replace one meal each day, perferably the meal that tends to contain the most calories. For most this is dinner, which is often a larger meal that may include a dessert. For rapid weight loss, you may wish to replace two meals per day with a weight loss meal replacement powder, as long as you take a multivitamin and mineral daily to prevent micronutrient deficiencies.


The foods that we consume each and every day contain literally thousands of natural chemicals, many of which have not yet been scientifically identified. Ultimately, we probably don’t know exactly how many essential nutrients that are required keep us healthy and happy, promoting longevity and protecting against disease. So it becomes important when replacing two meals daily to support yourself nutritionally with a multivitamin and mineral formulation and/or a natural greens product. This ensures your vitamin, mineral and phytochemical intake does not drop too low. After all, we do not want to set ourselves up for deficiencies, such as inadequate zinc or vitamin B6, while on a quest to improve body composition, as this would be counterproductive in the long-term. 


Some meal replacement powders contain small amounts of carbohydrates, though they all contain a significant amount of protein to cover your essential amino acid needs. These supplements have low energy values, starting at a mere 96 calories for a chocolate flavoured product. Given that the average meal contains around 700 calories, a 100-150 calorie liquid meal replacement shake can contribute to an energy deficit so you can lose a reasonable amount of fat mass over time. After all, weight loss is all about more caloric expenditure than intake, which is an effective concept for healthy individuals, and the foundation of fat loss programs.


Sometimes mere calorie restriction may not be enough to promote fat loss, which can often be the case with insulin resistance. If you are finding the calorie restriction process slow and arduous when it comes to results, it may be best to limit your carbohydrate intake, focusing the majority of your calories on proteins, high fibre foods and fats. It doesn't necessarily need to be to the point of ketosis. This will help to reduce your insulin levels, allowing your body to access your fat stores for energy once again. In this case, look for a meal replacement shake containing around 5 grams or less of carbohydrate per serve.


Do everything in your power to make your fat-loss efforts sustainable. Ever heard of the cabbage soup diet? When weight starts falling away, which can be an amazing feeling, we first have to ask what will happen when the diet stops. And what kind of weight are we actually losing? When we drop our dietary calorie intake, the large majority of dieters drop their protein intake as well. When we lose weight, the quality of your diet and exerciuse program will determine whether you lose a small or large amount of important muscle mass.


Muscle mass is a crucial reservoir of amino acids, which keeps us mobile, healthy and reduces risk for falls as we age. Muscle is one of the most important markers of general health. So, when planning a dietary approach, try to keep protein up, preferably to at least 2 grams per kilogram of body weight daiy. You will need to experiment with protein meals and snacks to find what works for you. Then, over time ask yourself how can I incorporate aspects of this program into my lifestyle, once the diet is finished? Participating in resistance exercise at least twice weekly, in addition to regular aerobic exercise, such as walking and swimming, is also a great way to stimulate anabolic or muscle-building responses in the body, and also helps one achieve a slightly higher energy expenditure. Most importanly, however, is finding types of exercise that you can enjoy, preferably with other people.