Health and Fitness By Mae Davies / October 29, 2014 The American Dietetic Association has published a study that shows the effects of meal replacements on adult women. They were divided into two groups. One group received regular meals, while the other group was on meal replacement shakes. Although the two groups were on different forms of weight loss diets, both received roughly 1200 calories daily. The result of the study was controversial. Both groups lost an average of 3-6 pounds after three months, but only the meal replacement group kept their weight for a year. The group with a regular meal plan put the lost weight back on. This is just one of the few studies that prove the effectiveness of diets based on meal replacement shake recipes. Obesity Research, for instance, published a study in 2000 that is quite similar to the one previously mentioned, but this study had both men and women as subjects. After three months, the weight loss was compared. Those who went through a traditional weight loss diet lost less than 2 pounds, while those who had meal replacements lost about 7 pounds. Who benefits from meal replacement shake recipes? Anyone who wants to lose weight and anyone who wants to control their daily calorie intake without much hassle should try meal replacements. Those who have no time to prepare good food in the morning may whisk fruits and have a nutritious blend that has significantly low sugar and low fat content. Nonetheless, like other weight loss techniques, meal replacement shakes and smoothies are not for people who prefer to chew solid foods. To make sure you are on the right track, follow these healthy tips if you want to try meal replacement shake recipes. Have One Meal a Day Unless your weight loss is supervised by a dietician, you should not stress your body too far by skipping all meals and replacing them with diet shakes. Starving yourself of calories isn’t a good and healthy way to lose weight. Have two diet shakes a day and have one balanced meal, possibly during lunchtime. Don’t Overdose on Cucumber Smoothies Cucumbers have very low calorie content. A regular sized cucumber has about 50 calories, and that won’t keep you up all day. Meal replacement shakes should have at least 200 calories, enough to provide you energy and prompt the body to burn some body fat. Balance Protein and Carbohydrates Most people think diet shakes are all protein. That’s good if you want to lose fat but not lean muscle mass. Don’t mistake sugars for good carbs. You’re better off sticking to sugars in fruits—no artificial sweeteners. Replace High-Fat Breakfast Does your breakfast usually consist of bacon, omelets, or hotdogs? These easy-to-prepare brekkies are high in fat. And if you often have to hurry to work, you probably just grab a bagel and a cappuccino. You’re starting your day with 900 calories. Even worse is when you skip breakfast and go hungry until midday only to overeat at lunch. The solution: a meal replacement shake that’ll give you about 300 calories in the morning. Plan a Variety Banana shakes alone for a week can be a nightmare. Who said you have to stick to one recipe? There are so many meal replacement shake recipes to try, and you can try new recipes yourself. You can have a mocha protein shake today, a blueberry smoothie tomorrow, and choco-raspberry the next day. You can also have one diet shake in the morning and a different shake for lunch. For instance, have a banana-cocoa combo for breakfast and spinach raspberry for lunch. Fresh Fruits and Vegetables Only Don’t use canned fruits and veggies because they are bathed in preservatives. Canned fruits are bathed in sugary syrup too.