Diets - Meal Replacement Plans
Two Broad Categories
of Liquid Diets/Meal Replacement Plans
Liquid diets generally
fall into two categories.
- Low Calorie Liquid Diets/Meal Replacement
This type of liquid diet consists of medically supervised liquid meal
replacements that provide about 500-800 calories per day (a very low
calorie plan). These then progress to include a certain amount of solid
food. Usually short-term only, this type of liquid diet is usually reserved
for seriously obese people who need to lose a lot of weight quickly.
- Commercial Liquid Diets/Meal Replacement
This is the popular type of liquid diet. In this plan, liquid meal replacements
are consumed by the dieter in place of one or two regular daily meals.
In addition, the dieter may consume one or two meals of real food (usually
low-fat and calorie-controlled). Some liquid diet programs offer pre-packaged
meal-options for these real meals. This type of liquid diet is widely
advertised to the general diet public as a way of achieving fast weight
What Food does a Liquid Diet Plan consist
Usually, a liquid diet plan consists of
a nutritionally balanced shake made from sugar, skimmed milk powder, fiber,
vitamins, minerals and sweetener. (Some liquid diet plans also include
snack bars.) In addition, these liquid diet plans permit a certain amount
of solid or real food.
The calorie content of these plans varies
- Low Calorie Liquid Diets offer about
500 calories per day in the form of 5 shakes, plus a real meal of about
200 calories, for a total of about 700 calories.
- Commercial Liquid Diets usually provide
3 shakes of about 200 calories each, plus a real evening meal of about
600 calories, for a total of about 1,200 calories.
Liquid Diets/Meal Replacement Diets -
Drawbacks of Low Calorie Liquid Diets/Meal
Low calorie liquid diets (500-800 calories a day) usually offer too little
fiber and lack important antioxidants found in fruits, vegetables and
whole grains. This can lower resistance to disease.
In addition, due to the low calorie content,
these liquid diets are unsafe unless medically prescribed and supervised.
Finally, studies have shown that weight loss achieved while following
a low calorie liquid diet plan is rarely sustained. Dieters can expect
to regain as much as 75% of weight lost, within 3 years.
Drawbacks of Commercial Liquid Diets/Meal
Because these weight loss plans combine liquid meal replacements with
solid foods, they are higher in calories and nutrients and therefore healthier.
The Big Weight Loss Issue
However, the big drawback remains the issue of eating habits. These diets
may help you to lose weight in the short term but they can't teach you
to eat right in the long term.Without such diet-modification, long term
weight loss is not possible.
If you are looking for long term weight loss, these
liquid diets/meal replacement plans are not to be recommended. Successful
weight loss is all about training yourself to eat properly.
A Note about Healthy Weight Control
Fad diets, unbalanced diets, diet pills, diet supplements, weight loss
surgery and other short term weight loss methods are not recommended for
permanent weight control. The best way to lose excess fat and maintain
a healthy weight in the long term is to follow a balanced calorie-controlled
diet (that improves your eating habits) and take regular aerobic exercise.
An excellent option is this
Weight Loss Program