I’ve received messages from ladies over the past couple of weeks asking me my opinion on meal replacement shakes, so I thought I’d share my views with all of you, just incase some of you have already fallen into the trap of these ‘quick fix’ options.

Ok. So lets say you do go on the shake diet (this is replacing 2-3 meals a day with a (chemically processed) shake. Yes, you will lose weight, probably up to 5 kilos, very very quickly, and along with that you will also lose energy and very rapidly mess up your metabolism. Doing this will place your body into ‘survival mode’, which means any food you consume will not be burned for energy, it will be stored as fat and slow your metabolism down. Fast forward 2-3 weeks later….you start eating 3-5 meals a day again and can’t figure out why you are not only gaining weight, but gaining up 1-1.5kg a week.

It’s cos you’ve thrown out your hormonal balance. Your body doesn’t know what’s going on, Your eating, but will you keep eating?? Your body doesn’t know anymore, so it will continue to store everything you eat just incase you start to starve it again.

I know a woman who went on the Tony Ferguson diet about the same time I was losing my weight. She was losing it as fast as I was (1.5kg a week), while she was still going out drinking on the weekend, and just drinking shakes through the week she really didn’t change much about her lifestyle and I know she hated those shakes, but hey, she was killing it, living her normal life, so she kept on that hamster wheel. I, on the other hand, changed my entire lifestyle, I educated myself on what was going to nourish me and what was going to sabotage my goals. I also made exercise part of my daily life, not just the gym, but incidental activity as well. (going to the gym or bootcamp doesn’t make you an active person, going on walks, bike rides, playing with your kids, parking further away from the shops, squatting while cooking or cleaning your teeth, etc make you active). She lost 45kg, I lost 50kg. Fast forward 6 years and she has gained back all of that 45kg PLUS another 20kg…..I’m not making this up guys.

The trick to this weight loss thing, is to be prepared to make life changes (this is particularly true for those women with 20+kg to lose). You know what you are doing isn’t working, so change it!

The risks and side-effects of these quick fix diets include:

  • Fatigue
  • Nausea, constipation and/or diarrhoea
  • Gallstones
  • Heart problems
  • Anaemia
  • Loss of lean muscle mass
  • Gout
  • Electrolyte imbalances

The reason you may suffer with all or any of these side-effects is partly because of the rapid changes your body goes through, and partly because it’s difficult to receive all the nutrients you need from so few calories.

There is no quick fix for anything in life. If you want to buy a house, you have to save for it right? The same thing applies for weight loss and gaining a healthy fit body, you have to WORK for it. Not only will the result be long term, but you’ll appreciate them more. Take care of your bodies. Do not damage them with chemical gimmicks that will destroy your health.

No, it’s not easy. No, you won’t know what do at first, but it is worth it. YOU are worth it.
Please talk to us before you sabotage yourself with weight loss shakes and/or diet pills.

Yours Truly
Nat Howden xx