Agave Syrup
Agave Syrup
  1. The “Vitamins and Minerals” Are Synthetic

These so-called vitamins and minerals are not sourced from actual food. Even though they may claim to have these healthy properties, they are not coming from the right place, making them difficult for your body to even absorb them. Unprocessed foods like fresh fruits and veggies are always a better option.

  1. Too Much Added Sugar

If your meal replacement options come in a variety of indulgent flavors such as “cupcake” or “rich chocolate”, beware. These may sound appealing, especially when labeled as “low calorie”, but it’s simply a marketing tactic that will take a toll on your insides. Be sure to check the sugar content of any product you consume. Many of these have sugar or a sugar substitute listed as one of the top 5 ingredients. Regardless of whether you’re trying to lose weight or gain weight, added sugar is still a source of empty calories. Consuming too much added sugar can lead to moodiness, dips in energy levels, stomach queasiness and worsened overall health due to inflammation.

  1. Contain Artificial Ingredients

Just some of these unnatural ingredients include refined vegetable oils than can promote inflammation, and shelf stabilizers such as cellulose gel or carrageenan. These can cause some serious tummy issues if consumed too often. Then there’s thickeners and preservatives, like maltodextrin, which has a very high glycemic index and causes blood sugar spikes. Finally, there are color and flavor enhancers, often including artificial sweeteners like aspartame or sucralose, which have been linked to problems like weight gain and headaches.

Aren’t a lot of these side effects things that they’re claiming to remedy? Perhaps that’s how they keeps customers buying? For anyone with a sensitive digestive system, it’s usually hard to properly absorb synthetic vitamins or digest foods with lots of preservatives and chemicals. Consuming prepackaged meals or bars doesn’t teach you any useful long-term strategies related to healthy meal preparation, watching portions, managing cravings or listening to your body’s hunger/fullness signals through mindful eating. Even if you do start a program, it’s been proven that only half of those people who start do not stick with it. Do yourself a favor and make some natural power smoothies out of real fruits, veggies, and other nutrients. It pays to know exactly what’s going in your body.