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shakes and meal replacements... do they really work???

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shakes and meal replacements... do they really work???

Postby sydgurl » Thu Feb 12, 2009 11:33 am

Ever since coming back from holidays in jan, everyday my routine is getting less and less everyday (except for the walking every morning!) i just need a lil boost and some motivation of actually losing weight! I only wanna lose 10kgs and was wondering if these Tony Ferguson or ISOWHEY shakes work? do they taste good? i dont wanna waste my money on the stuff and it doesnt work... i have been watching wat im eating and do atleast an hour of exercise a day but i feel like ive been doing it for so long and nothing. so ive sorta just wanna give up... i dunno wat to do anymore and maybe just seeing if i lose just one kilo, maybe that will motivate me to do more?!!? thanks, i just need something or someone to help me out! thanks... :(
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Re: shakes and meal replacements... do they really work???

Postby EvilWombatQueen » Thu Feb 12, 2009 12:14 pm

There seem to be two different issues in your post: whether meal replacements work, and why hasn't diet/exercise worked for you so far.

To deal with the first one first: yes, meal replacements work for some people. There are different programs and different levels to choose from. If you want to follow the strictest program, like Optislim, where you replace all three meals and end up on a very low calorie program I'd do it only under medical supervision. These programs are designed for people who have a lot of weight to lose and who need to lose it quickly, for instance if they need surgery. Other programs are less strict and only require you to replace one meal per day. Others fall between the two and allow you to decide how many meals you want to replace, or slowly phase you back into incorporating more 'real' meals into your diet.

On paper they should work for everyone because they restrict calories. However, whether it works in real life depends on whether or not you can stick to it, and whether you fall back into old habits once you stop using the meal replacements. Some people can stick to it, others find it's not for them. My MIL lost 20kg using Tony Ferguson. However I know plenty of people who have tried meal replacements and have given up within a week.

If you want to find out if it will work for you first speak to your doctor to find out his or her advice. If, and only if, your doctor says it's okay then give it a go. Sign up for a week or so's worth and see if it works for you. If it does, great. If it doesn't, that's fine. A lot of weight loss is about trial and error to see what system works for you.

As to the second issue, can you give us more details about what you are doing with your eating and exercise? There are several possibilities as to why it's not working:

You may still be eating too much. What people consider average food portions to be has crept up over the years. Check this site out to see if your portions are larger than what is recommended. Or you can sign up for a free Calorie King account and use their food planner to check out the exact calorie content of what you eat in a day. If your hour of exercise is walking or other low impact activity it could be stimulating your appetite without burning the corresponding number of kilojoules.

Or you may be eating too little. If you are being incredibly strict with your diet, and that one hour of exercise is cardio where you are burning a lot of calories, you may be getting below 1200 calories per day in total. Once your calorie intake gets below a certain point your body will slow its metabolism and decrease the amount of fat burned during exercise. It does this to prepare from famine because it thinks you are going to starve to death. If you find on Calorie King that you are eating too few calories, or exercising too many away, then the answer may actually be to relax a little. Exercise a bit less, or eat a bit more.

What sort of exercise are you doing? If it's seven days of cardio then you might need to use a different routine. Alternate cardio days with weights/resistance days. Make sure you include at least one rest day your your body to recover. Muscle burns more calories at rest than fat does, so by building muscle you raise your resting metabolism. Or if you always run you might need to substitute a different activity like swimming on your cardio days. The human body becomes efficient to minimise burning excess calories. That's why something like running seems so hard at first, but becomes easier over time. Your body adjusts to make it easy. If your body has adjusted you'll need to either increase your current exercise by doing it faster or for longer (no more than 5-10% increments though or you may injure yourself). Or start doing a different activity which your body finds harder for a while.

Good luck!
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Re: shakes and meal replacements... do they really work???

Postby mumnbub » Thu Feb 12, 2009 12:52 pm

I agree with everything EWQ has said but want to add one other thing- everyone does go through a plateo point which could last for a week or 2 or like me for a few months. Somtimes all you need to do is perservere and eventually things will start moving again or you need to spice things up a bit to get things working.

I decided after a few months of eating and exercising and not losing any more weight I would give myself a kick start again and am having the TF shakes at the moment- finally last week there was a result! But I dont intend on doing this for long, only a few weeks just to kick start again. I personally like the taste but I know I cant commit long term and if I was to tell myself I had to be strict and cant have anything outside of the plan then I would binge, have in the past so dont want to take that risk, if i decided i dont want a shake for lunch then i will have something else that is healthy, knowing i have the option is actually keeping me on track.

I did not start losing weight until after my son was born- so I was close to 100kg when I had him. I wish I had of lost it all beforehand, had been trying for years and never lost more than 5kg at a time and always put it all back on plus some. Now I have lost just shy of 20kg and for the most part it has been from eating the right foods and doing regualar exercise. It has taken me a long time to get to this point but I dont have a reason to hurry so I do have the choice to take it slow. But dont put a time frame on this- well, not an unrealistic one anyway, having goals is important and a very usefull tool but if your unrealistic about it then you are only setting yourself up fo disapointment.

Have you written down any goals? if not, sit down and work out what you want to achieve overall and in between (5-10kg lots are great goals). For a time frame, plan to lose between 500g and 1kg a week, this is a healthy amount to lose and will give you the best chance of keeping it off perminantly. There may be weeks where you lose more and some where you lose less which is fine- just dont deliberatly push youself to lose 2kg or more or you will burn out and stop losing weight.

I wish you all the best and cant wait to hear more about your journey.
Start weight: 98kg April 2008
22/12/08- 80.7kg
29/12/08- 81.8kg
04/01/09- 81.6kg
12/01/09- 81kg
19/01/09- 80kg
09/02/09- 79.3kg
Next goal 75kg

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Re: shakes and meal replacements... do they really work???

Postby sandman » Fri Feb 13, 2009 10:51 am

I have just finished my first week on the shakes and have lost 2.2 kg in 4 days. I am very happy with that and don't have any intention to get off them until i lose 30kgs. I am also saving money because i used to spend about $20 a day on food and now it's about $40 a week (AU Dollar)

The shakes i'm doing are the alphaslim. I am replacing 2 mail meals (bf and lunch), i don't snack, so sometimes if i'm too hungry i will have another shake at 3:00p and ONLY then.

Here are some points about my experience so far:
- Yes, it still takes will power to diet correctly, this just makes the choice SO much easier and it also provides a low GI and vitamin enriched suppliment
- This is not a quick fix. It will take a while if you want to keep the weight off
- Once off, you can't go back to your old ways or it'll gain back so they are not a permanent solution

Thinking realistically about any weight loss technique is the only way to get results.

Hope this helps.
Ryan
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Re: shakes and meal replacements... do they really work???

Postby Gordz » Fri Feb 13, 2009 11:10 am

yep, i agree with everything ryan said
Aussie Male, 26, 194cm.

Start date: 12/8/2013
Highest - 144.8kg

Current - 141.3kg

Goal - 110kg

3.5kg lost

31.3kg to go
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Re: shakes and meal replacements... do they really work???

Postby mumnbub » Fri Feb 13, 2009 12:12 pm

Hi Ryan, what sort of dinner do you have? I am currently replacing 2 meals with shakes but trying to make sure I still eat enough real food at dinner. I know if I go under 1200cal I dont lose weight so I have to be careful.

Congrats on the loss so far, sounds like your doing really well on it.
Start weight: 98kg April 2008
22/12/08- 80.7kg
29/12/08- 81.8kg
04/01/09- 81.6kg
12/01/09- 81kg
19/01/09- 80kg
09/02/09- 79.3kg
Next goal 75kg

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Re: shakes and meal replacements... do they really work???

Postby sandman » Fri Feb 13, 2009 2:20 pm

i'm lucky to have my wife to cook me dinner. She usually does meat and veg or salad. She's been a good support in most areas and we're about to have a kid so getting the dinners healthy is the best way to go
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Re: shakes and meal replacements... do they really work???

Postby sydgurl » Mon Feb 16, 2009 4:29 pm

i hardly ever eat junk food and i mean ever! i dont remember the last time i had a chocolate bar or bag of chips etc... I was working out hard everyday doing weights, more then an hour walking everyday, cross trainer for about 40-60mins on med, wii fit games (step, boxing, running...) and plus house work which i get right into to make my me work harder! and still got nothing... my mum or dad cooks healthy meals which are mainly fish or meat with alwayz a side of salad/veggiez or mash potato or some sort of potato (which i never ever eat!) i have a healthy breakfast either weetbix or a mixed dried fruit cereal, nutri grain etc and lunch is always different but i try and keep as healthy as possible. its just crazy that it feels like nothing has worked. im 70kgs and just wana loose 10kgs to wat i was... i was thinking of trying the ISOWHEY things?? ive heard they are really good... i just need a boost to get off my butt and keep guying with the exercise... i guess im just getting really upset about it... i did wanna lose the weight by summer this year which i think is reasonable for 10kgs, isnt it??? im just not into this counting every single calorie i eat thing... might just stay this way forever... :(
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Re: shakes and meal replacements... do they really work???

Postby EvilWombatQueen » Mon Feb 16, 2009 4:40 pm

Sydgurl, have a read of this article before you decide what to do. There can be many reasons for hitting a plateau. The trick is to work out why your body isn't reponding and change your diet and/or exercise routine accordingly.

Good luck!
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Re: shakes and meal replacements... do they really work???

Postby John » Mon Feb 16, 2009 6:46 pm

I'm a bit late to this thread, but I'm having protein powder mixed with water, and in answer to your question, does it work? Yes, as a protein source. I don't really like eating meat, or fish, and protein suppresses my appetite very well. This is where whey powder comes in very well, it's quick and easy and helps a lot. I'm not a big protein consumer, but I find that if I have more than about 70g of protein, it really suppresses my appetite. On the negative side, it is quite expensive.
Heaviest weight: 94kg
Goal weight 66kg
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Re: shakes and meal replacements... do they really work???

Postby sydgurl » Tue Feb 17, 2009 1:45 pm

thanks guyz, im reading that article now and will see my doctor on friday to talk about it... i wish i had time to go to the gym but being a stay at home mum with no car doesnt help!
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Re: shakes and meal replacements... do they really work???

Postby Bek » Wed Feb 18, 2009 8:45 am

I used OptiFast to lose about 5kg before my wedding in October 07 and it really worked for me, BUT now I know that the reason it worked so well was aided by the fact that there was something I HAD to be a particular size for..... the Dress. SO motivation to stick to the diet worked and I dropped the weight really quickly.
This time around, I struggle to stay on the diet - I take Chromium to help with cravings - it does help a little, but I need to dig my heels in and just drink lots of water - I average about 3L a day now - when I get hungry and not snack!!!!!

I have a shake for breakfast, apple for morning tea, shake for lunch and another apple or other piece of fruit for arvo tea and then a light dinner with lean protein, plenty of fresh veggies - generally steamed or stir fried - and a small serving of low GI carb. I drink regular coffee (I dont take sugar) with low fat milk and herbal teas throughout the day.

I am on day 5 and have lost the 'water weight' which is normally (from experience) about .5 - 1 kg. SO now the fun really begins!

Each to their own - they are hard to stick to if you dont have the motivations - so get your head set right before you start!! Best of luck!
Bek - Woman on a Mission!!
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