Punxsutawney Phil predicted six more weeks of winter, which means you’ve got plenty of time to start slimming down for swimsuit season (or even spring break). The key to getting lean is to combine cardio exercise with the right diet. First, you need to make sure you’re doing enough cardio to burn fat every day. Next, clean up your plate. When mapping out your weekly meal plans, consider including high-quality meal replacement shakes. Let me tell you why.
The benefits of meal replacement shakes
Not everyone has time to plan, shop for and cook healthy, diet-friendly meals. If you’re busy, and hungry, it’s easy to grab whatever’s available, telling yourself you’ll make up for the poor choice later. Occasional slip ups can be remedied, but it’s best to stay well prepared. Here’s where meal replacement shakes come in. Keep a canister handy (in your desk drawer at work, your gym bag, etc.), and you’ll have a quick, nutritious option any time healthy food is scarce.
Figuring out the ideal balance of nutrients in a meal isn’t always easy. With a pre-made (or ready-to-mix) shake, the work is done for you. One of my favorites is Garden of Life RAW Meal in chocolate flavor. Besides delicious flavor from real, organic cacao (not artificial flavoring, as with some meal replacement mixes), it delivers 34 grams of protein to feed muscles and help with weight loss, 16 grams of fiber to fill you up and 100% of the Daily Value for more than 16 essential nutrients. It’s also vegan and gluten free.
Ever heat up a diet-friendly, ready-to-eat meal in the microwave and think you’d rather just skip lunch than suffer through the terrible taste? With a quality meal replacement shake, you get a creamy, dessert-like drink that goes down easy, keeps you satisfied and provides nutrients you may not get from typical diet foods. When I want a shake that tastes like a shake, I drink Vitacost-brand ARO Lean Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup or Angel Food Cake.
Which meals are the best to replace?
It’s the most important meal of the day””but sadly, it’s also the one that’s most often skipped. Rather than running out on an empty stomach, give your body the boost it needs first thing in the morning with an ARO Lean shake. Simply add the ingredients to your blender, whirl and go. If you double the ingredients, you can pour half into a shaker bottle and take it with you for a healthy mid-morning or afternoon snack. No time to use an electric blender (or fuss with clean up)? A wire-whisk shake bottle makes shake-making even easier.
Do you use meal replacement shakes to help you stay slim? Please share your favorite in the comments below!
IFBB figure professional Melissa Transou, a fitness expert, wife and mother, blogs about the unique sports and nutrition needs of women and female athletes exclusively for Vitacost.com. Learn more about Melissa in this recent RXMuscle.com spotlight article, connect with her on Facebook or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.