The Hidden Dangers in Food: How Healthy is IdealShake?

Are you trying to lose weight by drinking pre-prepared shake mixes? Are they helping you lose the weight you need to shift? I have written before about the hidden calories in smoothies and the fact that I have tried (and failed) to lose weight on VLCDs, or “Very Low Calorie Diets”.

IdealShake is just one of many meal replacement shakes on offer in the international marketplace. Others I have tried are the Tony Ferguson plan and OptiFast. These plans do work for some people but in my personal opinion, there are better ways to lose weight and keep it off.

One of the popular meal replacement shake, IdealShake is known to suppress your hunger for up to three hours and you can replace two meals of your day with this shake. There are different flavors available such as chocolate, vanilla and mocha, which are rich in whey protein.

However, some of the ingredients in these products are not very natural-sounding, at least when compared with making your own smoothies at home. Listed below are some ingredients which might give side effects to some people.

The Hidden Dangers in Food: How Healthy is IdealShake_review2

Niacinamide

This is a vitamin found in food, used as a dietary supplement, and used as a medication. There are some reports that toxins within it might damage your health. According to Web MD, “Niacin deficiency can cause a condition called pellagra, which causes skin irritation, diarrhea, and dementia.” However, it is used to treat many medical problems too.

Cellulose Gum

Some websites like Live Strong have asked the question as to whether this is really harmful or not. Cellulose gum is a thickener and has been seen to cause obesity in mice.

Copper Gluconate

According to health expert Paul Crane, “Side effects from too much copper gluconate may include breathing problems, chest pain, stomach upset, and rash or hives.” It might lead to difficulty in breathing in some people, but only if you consume above the recommended dose.

Potassium Chloride

Potassium in the correct doses can be beneficial, however “hyperkalemia is a condition caused by too much potassium in the blood,” according to Wed MD. Livestrong provides more insight into the potential side effects here.

Potassium Iodide

A supplement of iodine, it might damage the thyroid gland. According to a recent study, “In certain susceptible individuals, including those with pre-existing thyroid disease, the elderly, or patients with other risk factors, the risk of developing iodine-induced thyroid dysfunction might be increased.”

What other ingredients do we find?

Doing some research, we can see that many ingredients used in IdealShake are known to be less than healthful. It’s important to be aware of what you are consuming, so if you are intolerant to the ingredients below, perhaps err on the side of caution.

Sugar

Yes, most processed foods do contain sugars. Some ready meals and shakes contain a lot of sucralose, which some people find the taste of unpleasant.

Fibre

According to health writer Jason Fung, “Fibre acts as an anti-nutrient. Because insulin is the main driver of obesity and diabetes, reduction is beneficial.” The 5 grams of fibre present in IdealShake might lead to bloating and diarrhea in some people who are intolerant to fibre in certain formats.

Protein Quality

It comprises of whey protein isolate, that has less lactose and macronutrients, which is useful for muscle recovery. The other constituent, whey protein concentrate, is low in protein content and digests slowly in the body, which is beneficial. However, there are not many amino acids present in this shake and they are essential for significant body functions. If you do not have sufficient amino acids, this might be a concern.

Pricing and Quality

As of April 2017, the cost of a canister that has 30 servings is $49.99 and you might find cheaper products in the marketplace, or you might be better off making your own shakes. Some people on review sites suggest that the ingredients do not justify for the high price and it makes use of artificial sweeteners, stabilizers and other things which might give some people side effects.

It makes use of 7 digestive enzymes to improve digestion. However, as we have seen above, many overly processed foods might contain harmful additives that lead to bloating and indigestion. Also, IdealShakes use Slendesta that is extracted from potato skin and suppresses hunger.

Business and Customer Reviews

It’s always good to do your own research on a product before using it and like with any processed food designed for weight loss, this product has its fair share of negative reviews.

Registered in Utah as IdealShake LLC, it is known for the manufacture of bars, fat burners and weight loss powders. Despite testimonials being present on the website, the company states on their homepage: “Statements on this website have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. If you are pregnant, nursing, taking medication, or have a medical condition, consult your physician before using our products.”

Another thing to mention is that there is a 30-day money back guarantee provided by the company, but the customer has to pay the handling charges. The reviews available here and here are not positive as customers express their displeasure after using this product.

Verdict

The protein content in this product is low and it does not do much in curbing hunger. The additives and artificial sweeteners added also have a potential to cause health risks and it might not be as tasty as making your own smoothie at home. Try other meal replacement shakes, and do your own research before signing on to an expensive plan.

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