If you’re trying to lose weight, you may have considered a liquid diet plan. But, are meal replacement shakes good for weight loss?
Are they better than portion-controlled or low-carb solid meals?
Meal replacements shakes are generally commercial liquid formulations designed to replace entire meals. They are most often 200-400 calories each. Sometimes, they are designed to meet the nutrition needs for a full day. Other times, they are designed to work alongside solid foods.
Here’s the science behind liquid diet plans, the results, and the answer to the question: Are meal replacement shakes good for weight loss?
The Science of Meal Replacement Shakes for Weight Loss
While meal replacement shakes and liquid diets may seem only subtly different than solid-food diet plans, they are significantly different.
In fact, there are many characteristics to them that completely change how the body responds. Here are the specifics of meal replacement shakes and how they affect weight loss.
1. Calorie Restriction
While there are some downsides to calorie restriction, we do know that consistent, long-term restriction is effective for weight loss for many people.
In fact, one study published in 2019 found that a 25% calorie reduction over two years resulted in an approximate 17-pound weight loss, of which 12 pounds were fat, in the study group. The control group, which did not reduce calories, gained approximately 0.2 pounds on average in the same time period (1).
One of the remarkable things about this study is that this weight and fat loss occurred in non-obese participants ages 21-50 years old. In addition to weight loss, the researchers found significant improvements in insulin sensitivity, inflammation, cardiovascular markers and more.
This is remarkable for two reasons:
- When less weight loss is needed, it is often more difficult to lose weight.
- These participants did not have compounding medical conditions often diagnosed with obesity such as hyperinsulinemia, diabetes, metabolic syndrome and more. Often, when these conditions are present, calorie restriction alone (without carbohydrate restriction) is not as effective.
Some drawbacks to calorie restriction alone (without carbohydrate restriction) include hunger, plateaus in weight loss, and ineffective weight loss if insulin resistance is also present.
Takeaway: While calorie restriction alone can be effective in healthy individuals, it is less effective and more challenging when diseases are also present compared to calorie plus carbohydrate restriction.
2. How Liquid Meals Shakes are Different from Solids for Weight Loss
While calorie restriction can be one piece of the puzzle for weight loss with meal replacement shakes, another aspect is the liquid consistency of the meals.
According to studies, liquid meals with the same macronutrient (carbs, proteins, and fats) composition as solid meals produce lower blood glucose and insulin response after the meal (2). These are very important aspects for weight loss.
What’s more, some experts believe liquid diets elicit the same effects in the body as fasting, with rapid weight loss, normalized blood sugars, and reductions in appetite.
Takeaway: The liquid consistency of meal replacement shakes can offer more weight loss benefits than solid meals.
3. Simplicity and Portion-Control
We know that simple diet instructions tend to result in better compliance than difficult, confusing ones.
One of the best aspects of meal replacement shakes is their simplicity. As long as you follow the simple directions, you’ll end up with the portion-controlled calories and macronutrients as directed.
Portion control consistently produces good weight loss results initially in studies, but lifestyle changes must also be made for long-term results (3).
Takeaway: Meal replacement shakes offer convenience, portion control, and ease-of-use.
Keto Zone Meal Replacement Shakes and Lifestyle Offer More
Although typical meal replacement shakes can produce weight loss results, they still lack some advantages for long-term weight loss that Keto Zone offers.
- High fat intake for improved satiety, mental clarity, and overall health (4)
- Ketone production for energy and health (5)
- Significant weight loss results initially and long-term (6, 7)
Take-Away: Keto Zone Shakes offer more advantages than traditional meal replacements
Bottom Line: Are Meal Replacement Shakes Good For Weight Loss?
Meal replacement shakes are good for weight loss. Study after study shows their effectiveness. In addition, Keto Zone is the leading diet for weight loss, whether in liquid or solid form. When you combine the two and use Keto Zone Shakes, you can get the best of both worlds: Healthy ketosis in an easy, convenient, and effective meal replacement shake.