Diet Shakes: Sipping to Slimness

By Elizabeth Ward, MS, RD
WebMD Weight Loss Clinic - Feature

Reviewed By Charlotte Grayson, MD

You meant to drop a few pounds this spring, but you never got around to eating less and exercising more on a regular basis. With summertime here, you're considering how to shed that extra weight, and fast. Are diet shakes the ticket to a slimmer you? Perhaps.

Don't Miss a Meal; Have a Shake

By Kathleen Zelman, MPH, RD, LD

In an ideal world, nutritious foods would always be available, along with the time to sit down and enjoy a pleasant meal. We all know there are days when you either have to grab something quick or miss a meal. Skipping meals is a recipe for disaster, often resulting in overeating the wrong kind of foods.

When time is at a premium, there's nothing wrong with drinking a "slim shake" for breakfast or lunch. Keep the shakes in your cupboard or desk for those times when you're unable to sit down to a healthy meal.

Look for drinks that average 26-28 calories per ounce. Journal an 8-ounce beverage as a meal-replacement drink, and a 12-ounce one as a meal-replacement shake.

Diet Shakes Pros and Cons

"I prefer people to lose weight on a balanced, low-fat diet that includes lots of fruits and vegetables," says Cathy Nonas, RD, a spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association and director of Obesity and Diabetes Program at North General Hospital in New York City. "However, I realize that approach doesn't work best for everyone, so sometimes I recommend liquid meal replacements as part of a healthy eating plan."