There is no denying a complete sit-down meal is the best line of attack to healthy weight loss. However, in the fast-paced world, there are situations when setting time for a sit-down meal becomes simply impossible. If you are fitness conscious you know even when the time is a constraint you have to find a way to stick to the plan. That is where meal replacements come in.
A high-quality meal replacement should be an acceptable substitution. It should be nutritious enough and keep you feeling full for long without sabotaging your fitness goals. The plethora of meal replacements on the modern market makes it difficult to select the best. The products are near identical and are heavily backed by infomercials that can easily convince you to settle for any product.
If you value quality, you must adopt the following tricks to get a meal replacement that will offer healthy nutrients, minerals, and vitamins. The best meal replacement is one that provides;
1. Low calories
The best meal replacement shake is one that fills you up for longer without adding too many calories. A high-quality product should contain at most 250 calories per serving including the calories in the beverage used to mix.
Any foodstuff that provides energy to the body contain calories. Meal replacements contain calories too. If you consume more calories than your body requires, the excess is converted into fats which are stored in the body tissues. This leads to added weight which can bar you from achieving your weight loss goals.
On the other hand, if you lower your calorie intake you force your body to utilize stored fat for energy. This leads to weight loss thereby making it easier to achieve your fitness goal. For this reason, it’s important to consider a number of calories in your ideal meal replacement.
2. Adequate low carbs
Carbohydrates are mainly obtained from grains, fruits, and plants. When you ingest carbohydrates, they are converted into glucose, galactose, or fructose. The body utilizes the required amount while the rest is stored as fat for future use.
On the other hand, if you consume less than the required amount of carbohydrates, your body turns to protein for fuel. This leads to reduced muscle mass through a process that can cause reduced metabolic rate and increased stress on your kidney.
Your body needs carbohydrates (simple or complex) for energy. Simple carbohydrate is found in milk, juices, and sodas. This type is easily digested to rapidly produce energy that lasts for a short period. On the other hand, complex carbohydrate takes time to be digested and absorbed. This type produces a steady stream of energy that lasts for longer to fuel your body for long.
It’s advisable you consume more complex carbs when observing fitness goals. It reduces cravings and is capable keeping you fuller for longer. Complex carbohydrates are obtained from pasta, vegetables, bread, and whole grains.
The best meal replacement is one that is low in carbohydrates to help you lose weight and reduce blood sugar. But, if the meal replacement is low in carb, how will it provide energy? Worry not, high-quality meal replacements substitute carbs for protein. They also include high-quality dietary fiber, protein, and healthy fats which ensure they provide the right amount of energy.
3. Adequate vitamins and minerals
Vitamins are essential for proper functioning of the macronutrients in your body. A high-quality meal replacement should contain a wide array vitamins and minerals including iron, zinc, calcium, vitamin C, B6, D, A, etc. The wider the assortment, the better the product, actually the array should contain more than 18 vitamins and minerals.
It’s always advisable to select a meal replacement with plenty of vitamins and minerals. This because when on meal replacements its difficulty to ingest a balanced diet with all the vital nutrients. Remember, you got only one meal and couple snacks for the day. Plenty of vitamins and minerals allows you to stay healthy and on course to achieve your fitness goals.
4. High-quality fiber
Fiber is a vital nutrient which is classified as either insoluble or soluble. Of the two soluble fiber provides commendable health benefits including weight loss. However, the quality of this fiber determines the effectiveness of its health benefits.
Viscous fiber is highly regarded for its ability to reduce appetite and control eating habits. This type of fiber controls your appetite making you ingest fewer calories without thinking about it. When you consume viscous soluble fiber like psyllium, pectins, guar gum, and glucomannan they thicken in the stomach and form a gel-like substance that settles in the gut. This keeps you fuller for long by prolonging the time for digestion and absorption of nutrients. They also prevent the emptying of your stomach. A good meal replacement should supply about 5g to 10g per serving.
5. High proteins
Any fitness guru will understand the difference between meal replacements and protein shakes. Protein shakes contain high amounts of proteins and calories. The recommended protein allowance per day is 0.8g per 1kg of body weight for people who don’t engage in rigorous training and 1.7g for those looking to building muscle mass. So why is protein important in meal replacements?
Protein slows down the digestion of nutrients making you feel fuller for longer. This results in reduced cravings and prevents overeating. Additionally, proteins boost metabolism. Your body uses energy to break down food into smaller particles. When you consume protein, your body uses a lot of energy to process them compared to carbs and fats. Therefore every time you consume protein, it boosts metabolism and allows more calories to burn. A high-quality meal replacement must contain at most 20g of proteins.
Wrapping it up
In case you are wondering how you can get a meal replacement with all these properties, trash all the worries. The market has very many options, and with the tips, we have provided it will be easy to find the best. But just in case you want an easy ride you can try one of these three products; IdealShape, Shakeology, and Veg One.