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How do I Choose the Best Meal Replacement Powders?

By T. Webster
Updated May 17, 2024
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Meal replacement powders have calorie levels and ingredients that are geared toward a specific purpose. When choosing a meal replacement powder, first determine whether your main goal is to lose weight, to gain weight or simply to provide more nutrition in your diet. The meal replacement powder also should have a pleasing taste and fit into your budget. When in doubt, buy a small amount to make sure that it is something you will want to drink on a regular basis.

A meal replacement powder is just that: a quick, nutritious way to replace a meal. Depending on the flavor and formula, it is mixed with water, juice or milk. The powder alone is not an easy way to achieve whatever goal you have, however. You must still follow an exercise program and eat nutritiously, according to your goals.

You also will need a powder with high-quality ingredients. Look for those with eggs, whey or milk listed as the first ingredients. Avoid powders with high levels of sugar or other ingredients that have no nutritional value.

Taste is one of the most important factors to consider. Some meal replacement powders will have a very thick or grainy texture that can overpower the flavor. Over time, you likely will acquire a taste for them. The most common flavors for these powders are vanilla and chocolate.

The price of most meal replacement powders tends to be reasonable. They often are sold by the case, however. Still, they tend to cost less than a fast food meal or any other type of meal that you could buy or prepare. In most cases, using meal replacement powders will be well within your budget.

For weight loss, choose a meal replacement powder with low levels of calories, sugar and fat. These powders often have about 200 calories per serving. Meal replacement powders work for weight loss when used in conjunction with a diet that consists of several small meals throughout the day instead of three large meals. Eating smaller meals more frequently can encourage weight loss by helping to speed up your metabolism.

If you want to gain weight or build muscle, you should choose a powder with very high levels of protein and carbohydrates. These powders contain about 300 calories per serving. All meal replacement powders generally have high levels of vitamins and other nutrients, because they are being used to replace regular meals.

You also might want to use a meal replacement powder simply to improve your nutrition. It is better to use one of these drinks to stave off hunger than to eat a candy bar or a bag of potato chips. Meal replacement powders also are helpful if you lead a lifestyle that is so busy it that you find it difficult to make time to eat during the day.

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