Should You Use A Meal Replacement Shake for Weight Loss?
- Possible Pat
- August 6, 2018
Meal replacement shakes for weight loss are a popular way that people try to supplement their nutrition. Almost everyone who has tried to lose weight has tried them in one form or another. There are even companies whose main focus is to make meal replacement shakes, such as Shakeology and Herbalife.
Most of these protein shakes work by providing you will a low calorie, and sometimes tasty drink that you are supposed to consume instead of eating a full meal.
This subject is really important to me; the reason being is because I was a victim of “believing” in products such as these. I wanted just to drink shakes and lose the weight as fast as possible! But do you know how hard it was to do that? To not eat real food, to just drink shakes all day? Did I lose weight? Yes, but did I keep it off? No, it not even close, plus I even gained the weight all back because I would binge the moment I would get off of them.
This is one of the pitfalls of using commercial meal replacement shakes, but believe it or not, could be a healthy way to have a meal replacement shake, without the consequences of gaining more weight back.
Should You Be Using a Meal Replacement Shake?
If you follow me on Instagram, then you have probably seen me call out companies like Herbalife and Shakeology, but this doesn’t mean there is no such thing as a meal replacement shake. One problem with the shakes you buy from the store or through weight loss companies is that they typically do not contain very many calories, yet all the protein and carbs that you would want from a full meal, leaving you very little room to make healthy additions.
If you look at popular shakes that are sold in the stores or the ones you can purchase through supplement companies like the ones listed, you will notice that these shakes are typically around ~200 calories a serving. If you have a lot of weight to lose, 200 calories for a meal isn’t going to cut it.
This is why people have a lot of success very quickly using these shakes. It is because they use them to replace one, two or even three meals a day and are suddenly in a huge calorie deficit. They lose weight, but the weight doesn’t stay off because it is not a realistic diet. The weight loss has nothing to do with the shakes themselves, but rather the short term success comes from consuming such a low amount of calories daily. If you are used to eating 6,000 calories a day, and suddenly you are only consuming 1,600, you will lose weight, but it will not be long-term because it is not sustainable.
If you want a meal replacement, then make your own protein shake with real ingredients. Using a meal replacement shake can be an easy way to have your breakfast or lunch on the go, but if you are substituting a meal with a shake, your shake needs to reflect the meal you are not eating.
So should you use a meal replacement shake?
If it is convenient and you do it right, go right ahead. Think of it this way… If you were to take your grilled chicken, broccoli, and sweet potato and throw it in a blender and drink it, you would still be getting the same nutritional value as if you had just eaten the food. This is how you should look at your shakes. A meal in a glass, only hopefully tastier than the chicken example.
How to Figure Out How Many Calories You Should Be Eating
Knowing how many calories a day you should be eating and how much you need to be eating to lose weight depends on how much you currently weigh.
First, you need to figure out how many calories you need to eat every day to maintain the current weight you are at. If you are not gaining weight at the moment, this is most likely about how many calories you are currently consuming.
Take how much you currently weight and multiply it by 14. This number will be the number of calories you need to eat daily to neither gain or lose weight. Then take this number and multiply it by .25, subtracting your result from your maintenance number. This is how many calories you need to subtract from your daily diet to lose weight.
For example, if you weight 300 pounds, multiply this by 14. You’ll see that you will need to consume 4,200 calories every day to remain 300 pounds without exercise.
Then you would take 4,200 and multiply it by .25, which will equal 1,050. Subtract 1,050 from 4,200 calories, and you will see that your new calorie goal is 3,150 calories a day.
(YOUR WEIGHT) X 14 = (MAINTAINENCE CALORIES)
(MAINTENANCE CALORIES) X .25 = (NEGATIVE CALORIES)
(MAINTENANCE CALORIES) – (NEGATIVE CALORIES) = (DAILY WEIGHT LOSS CALORIES)
NOTE: One pound is equal to 3,500 calories. This means you have to consume or burn off an additional 3,500 calories to lose one pound.
Based on the example above, this means that you need to consume 3,150 calories a day, divided up between your meals, snacks, and beverages. Also, this is based on the consumption of whole foods. You can also sign up for a Custom Meal Plan and have a nutritionist figure out the math for you.
How To Make Your Own Protein Shake For a Quick, Nutritious Meal
If you are going to use a meal replacement shake, then skip the name brand shakes and make your own.
There is nothing wrong with a meal replacement shake as long as you know how to make one. Your shake should reflect all of the macros and calories that you would get in a typical quick meal, and if should be made of whole foods.
This means that you want it to contain your protein, fat, and carbs. Using a protein powder within your shake is a popular way to add protein, while your fats can be made up of coconut oil, avocado, or nut butter. Your carbs can come from ingredients such as veggies and bananas.
Here is an example of a meal replacement you should try:
> ¾ cup unsweetened almond milk
> 1 scoop Chocolate Whey Protein
> 2 tbsp natural almond butter
> 1 handful of spinach
> 1 banana, peeled
> Place all of your ingredients in a blender and mix until smooth. For a thicker smoothie, add ice.
Calories – 476
Protein – 37g
Carbs – 47g
Fats – 27g
Note: You can get a discount on protein by using the code POSSIBLEPAT at checkout
However, you decide to make your shake you should be sure that it follows your diet. It should hold the calories of your typical meals (or you can have two shakes in the place of a single meal), and the macros should match your diet if you are following a carb-cycle or are on keto.
A great way to decide what foods you can put into your shake is by referring to my FREE Approved Foods List that you receive by getting on my email list. This guide provides you with all of my recommended foods, along with their calorie count and macros. This can make choosing your foods easy and quick.
And if you are trying to lose weight, but don’t know what macros you should be eating, you can make it simply by getting on a Custom Meal Plan and letting a nutritionist tell you exactly what you should eat and in what portions.
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About Possible Pat
Hi, I'm Pasquale Brocco and I've lost A LOT of weight. When I started my journey to lose weight, I weighed 605 pounds. After visiting the doctor, I realized I had to make a change. I started with a simple plan and within 60 days, I lost 100 lbs. So far, I've lost over 307 pounds. Now, I'm sharing a simple message with you, "Anything is possible." If you can put on the weight, you can lose the weight.