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Four Surprising Facts about Meal Replacements

Four Surprising Facts about Meal Replacements

Did you know?

  1. You can't just call something a "meal replacement".
  2. Meal replacements include sugar, carbs, and fats. Like a meal.
  3. Vitamins and minerals in meal replacements are typically lower amounts.
  4. Meal replacements as defined are a one-size-fits-all product, male, female, old, young and all the body shapes in-between.

Meal replacements

Meal replacements are defined in S2.9.3 of the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code. The code lists the specific requirements such as protein and energy and the ranges of vitamins and minerals meal replacements must have, to comply with the Codes specific requirements per S29-12.

Are meal replacements bad?

So, just to be clear. We are not saying meal replacements are bad, unsafe or that you should not use them. 

Typically, meal replacements are linked to some sort of weight loss effort, and generally can help in this regard as calorie intake if done properly is limited to the shake, and it is effectively meant to replace a meal. If they work for you, great.

What men want?

To be thinner, sexier, and of course awesome! And all this easy! We generalise of course.

But aging men typically also can have the following characteristics:

  • Getting larger and don't see the problem, thus don't change anything. "I'm still awesome, I'm not as large as some of my mates, I'll start exercising next week" and the excuses go on.
  • Metabolism is slowing due to age. That is a fact. You need less energy. The excess gets stored. Guess where and as what?
  • Protein requirements increase due to age. Muscles need protein and your body is getting less efficient.
  • Many men carry extra tummy fat, the worst kind. This visceral fat sits around your internal organs, heart, liver, kidney etc.  In 2017, two-thirds of Australian adults are overweight.
  • Many men gain weight as they still eat the same amount or more, or alternatively eat less to maintain a certain weight, and this reduced input means a reduced share of protein and nutrient intake. A double-edged sword?
  • We don't want to talk about beer, red wine, and snacks. TV, travel, availability in offices, all exacerbate this. You could all this invisible food, we block it out.
  • If you are eating enough to maintain your body's protein needs, chances are your carbs, fats, and sugar intakes are up as well.
  • Men don't always take their health seriously, but now more than ever we want to live longer to enjoy family, life, and love.

So, when it comes to health, one of the biggest issues Australian males facing us is weight.

After growing to 108kgs, I managed to lose 18kgs in 6 months, and "How did you do it?" is the first question I get asked, every time. I think the hope is that there is some magic weight loss bullet. There isn't.

Exercise alone won't get you there, as they say, YOU CAN'T OUTRUN BAD NUTRITION, no matter what an exercise app might promise. But you do need to exercise if you want to maintain muscle mass.

Meal alternative?

We wanted a simple and convenient way to get protein, and the key vitamins and minerals we needed without all the carbs, fats, and the rest, to help manage weight.

So, a quality protein with all the key amino acids, a protein to help make you feel "fuller", help suppress ghrelin, with vitamins and minerals in doses that could move the so-called needle. 

No, we cannot call it a meal replacement because it has ultra-low carbs and a specific mix of vitamins and minerals for male bodies, and thus doesn't meet the one size fits all requirements of the Food Standards Code.

But we can call it a meal alternative because it is different from a standard meal, is not meant to replace everything in a standard meal as defined by the Code, but one that helps minimizes the nasties. We call it the Fitter Stronger Pack.

Welcome to our range of powders, including Nootropics and greens powder

The Old Bull founders have been using these packages now for over 12 months, as an alternative to breakfast or lunch. They tried the Man Shake, which is probably the most well-known meal replacement product out there, it didn't stop the hunger pangs. Having a straight protein did. But do your own research to see if this is right for you.

Weight loss

So, if you are on a mission to lose some fat, specifically the visceral fat around your stomach which you know is not doing you any good.

You need to consider your carb intake. BMI is a measure although somewhat flawed, waist circumference is better, and health risks increase when this is over 94cm. Mine was 114cm, I am now 96cm and still trying. Read more on this here.

 

Calorie deficits?

This is where your body starts to use fat stores as energy, and thus reduces them. (Not Keto, more low or slow carb). 

  1. Make the call, decision, whatever you want to call it. 
  2. What are the triggers to any snacking? TV, morning coffee & muffin, travel, driving, exercise etc. Avoid these or grow some discipline.
  3. Use an app like MyFitnessPal even if just to understand how many calories are in your morning coffee. Education can empower you. Start doing a metal calculation of calorie inputs. You can now also see what nutrition you are getting with respect to protein, fibre etc which I find invaluable.
    Yes calories ad up quickly:
        Large Flat White, no sugar - 120 calories
        Glass of red wine - 85 calories 
        1 slice of pizza - 285 calories
        Bacon & egg roll - 410 calories
        Blueberry Muffin - 377 calories
  4. If you are not doing exercise, you should be. Anyway, at around 50 YO you have around 1,650 calories to play with a day excluding exercise. Do some research apps will tell you this based on wight and size. Do some research.

Keep in mind, a coffee, bacon & egg roll, glass of red wine and 4 slices of pizza and you are done for the day. What about lunch I hear you scream? Welcome to middle age. Your call I say.

    Good luck, Live longer thinner.

     

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