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Meal Replacement vs. Protein Shakes

Filed Under: Sports Nutrition at 1:25 pm | By: Mauricio Matusiak
Protein shakes are helpful products to support a healthy and well balanced diet.

Meal replacements are just as efficient, promoting diet stability and providing vitamins and minerals.

However, some people do not understand the difference between a protein shake and a meal replacement. Improper intake may be diminishing all the potential benefits of these products.

Don’t be confused. Let’s try to understand the differences step by step.

A protein shake is a product to be taken in between meals. For example, you may drink a shake for a mid-morning snack between breakfast and lunch, or in the afternoon between lunch and dinner. A shake may also be ideal after your workout or late at night.

A meal replacement is a very different product and should be consumed instead of breakfast, lunch or dinner. Meal replacements generally offer high amounts of carbohydrates and protein, providing vitamins and minerals as well.

Protein shakes don’t normally have as much nutritional value, therefore, should not be taken instead of a meal.

The idea of having a protein shake instead of meal could be costly because not enough nutrients are provided. You may not notice a big difference skipping a “real meal” every once in a while, but consistently having a protein shake as a meal could significantly affect your diet and, as a result, your health.

Finally, knowing what you are eating is essential for a healthy diet. Plan your diet ahead of time, making sure you understand how much protein you need and when you need it.

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17 Responses to “Meal Replacement vs. Protein Shakes”

  1. Lucinda says:

    I’m dieting and use protein shakes to replace 2 meals aday. I like Syntrax Nectar because it taste better than normal protein shakes and contains no fat or carbs. Also ecause protein shakes do lack most of the vitamins and minerals contained in meal replacement shakes I take along with them vitamin tablets to make up for it. I take 2 Herbalife Formula 2 per protein shake because you can take upto 6 of them a days as they contain a 3rd of your RDA of vits and mins per 2 tablets, and also I take Fish oil tablets to help get in my essential fatty acids. I drink lost of flavored water and because I’m on a ketogenic diet I don’t want to eat too many carbs (under 50g) so will only eat carbs in the evening when I have a real meal of fish or meat and veg plus fruit.

  2. se says:

    Now to the question, I was speaking to a few people and read the following article. Meal Replacement vs. Protein Shakes – Lucky Blog – And from my understanding after reading the article and hearing people out.

  3. proxy says:

    Thanks, good article. Do you know any other places that discuss this?

  4. Ayden says:

    Very nice! good info

  5. Janardhanaya says:

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  6. Protein Shakes says:

    Great content. Looking for some nutrition materials when I stumbled across your site. Bookmarked!

  7. Palmira Schleiff says:

    I have been using Warrior Milk for about 6 months. I tried Muscle Milk and Optimum Nutrition’s proteins but found both too hard on my stomach.Warrior Milk protein doesn’t give me the upset and I like many of their flavors. My absolute favorite is mixing the chocolate and peanut butter flavors. I have had no problems ordering off their website and the products always came quick enough.This protein is really affordable and was a lot cheaper than using Slim Fast shakes which I’ve used in the past. My goal for using the protein was to lose just 5-10 lbs (I was only 130 lbs to start) by replacing meals with the shakes. I have lost 12lbs to date and it was very easy in my opinion because the shakes both taste good and kept me full until my next meal.

  8. Shultis says:

    in case you use supplements without having any knowledge about what it in fact does with your body it is kinda scary..
    I guess it’s nothing wrong with using them if you really know what your performing.

  9. MarionJDicus says:

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  11. Marion Perkins says:

    While drinking protein shakes is more convenient on a tight schedule…if you have the time to cook a meal…eating has other benefits besides refueling your body. When you have finished your work out…your body is more sensitive to insulin and eating triggers its release into your body. Insulin helps your muscles better refuel for your next exercise and also trigger protein synthesis.

  12. Rolande Haith says:

    I don’t accept this particular blog post. Even so, I had looked in Google and I’ve found out you are correct and I seemed to be thinking in the wrong way. Carry on publishing top quality articles similar to this.

  13. Ramus says:

    If you need to pack on a lot of quality mass, I would deffo go with creatine

  14. Deandrea Chiverton says:

    The subsequent time I learn a weblog, I hope that it doesnt disappoint me as a lot as this one. I mean, I know it was my option to read, however I actually thought youd have something interesting to say. All I hear is a bunch of whining about one thing that you could possibly fix if you happen to werent too busy looking for attention.

  15. Heather says:

    I have a shake that is a meal replacement that I use everyday for more then 2 years now. It’s filled with vitamins, minerals and so much other stuff my body needs and actually craves! I use it for breakfast everyday as a quick on the go meal. It has kept me on track with my fitness goals and gives me the energy I need! I don’t think it’s a quick fix. And I have no problem using it long term as it has done amazing things for my health! Its actually being recommended by doctors because of the value it can bring to improving your health. I absolutely disagree with the statement replacing one meal a day with this shake could hurt me! True nature in a bag. Try it and see how much better you feel!

  16. marisa parker says:

    I personally take Visalus protein powder and it can be used as a meal replacement or as an after workout shake to build lean muscle

  17. Eiweiss says:

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