Are You Being Duped by Your Weight Loss Shakes?
Weight loss shakes are marketed as a fantastic option to help keep your calories, hunger, and macronutrients under control. I’ve used them in the past, though I stopped doing that when I started to try to put more whole foods in my life. When you make enough smoothies and have them ready in your freezer, you don’t need to spend the extra cash on weight loss shakes for diet support.
That said, I made the switch because I was cheap and because I was trying to get more whole foods in my life. It wasn’t because I didn’t think weight loss shakes could benefit me. Now, as it turns out, I might have made the right choice without knowing it.
I was recently reading in a magazine about a study conducted by the European Association for the Study of Obesity. The researchers found that drinking weight loss shakes might not actually help those of us who are trying to shed the extra weight. In fact, the research said that almost 80 percent of the shakes sold commercially for weight loss were labeled with health claims that could not be supported by trusted research. Even worse, the researchers said that many of the claims were simply not true at all.
The researchers were from LighterLife and Kings College London. The lead researcher was Dr. Kelly Johnston. They examined all commercially available products that were meant to replace meals for the purpose of weight control in the form of a shake. They analyzed products available in the United Kingdom in 2017.
Their analysis led them to measure each product’s nutrient composition and legal compliance against consumer understanding against nutrition and health claims on shake packaging. What they found was that only 10 percent of the packages were up to the E.U.’s minimum labeling and compositional requirements. Only 1 in 10 products had the minimum legal information on their packages!
Furthermore, the vast majority of the products didn’t even have the lowest level of compositional/nutritional criteria to be legally allowed to call themselves a “meal replacement for weight control,” said the study results.
Horrible! Can you imagine? I’m now wondering at what I was drinking all that time that I thought I was doing something good for myself instead of skipping a meal or resorting to fast food. For a while, I was drinking one or two of those types of products a week here in the U.S.
Don’t just trust what product claims tell you. Do your homework if you’re considering replacing a meal with a shake. Make sure you’re getting the nutrition you’re supposed to get from it.