At A Glance
Slim Fast has been around for about 25 years and has built a strong reputation for helping dieters shed those pounds through a meal replacement program.
By using their Slim Fast brand of replacement meals & snacks and one “sensible” meal of real food per day, you can expect to achieve long term weight loss.
If you don’t want to take in too many carbs, they introduced their Optima line that has 55% less sugar than their original products. Also, these lower carb meals contain increased levels of protein and fiber, plus half day’s supply of calcium.
Here’s How It Works
The basic theory of Slim Fast is simple : Lose weight because you’re burning more calories that what you’re taking in.
To help you control the amount of calories you’re taking in, you’re to eat one “sensible” balanced meal a day (of about 600 – 700 calories) & the other two meals are to be a Slim Fast replacement meal. For snacks in between the main meals, you can either have real food or choose from Slim Fast’s range of snack bars (less calories than their meal replacement bars).
Slim Fast meals can be purchased simply at supermarkets and an “Easy Option Plan” found on the product labels will give you more details.
The official Slim Fast website also offers tips on everything else you may need – from training for a 5 km race to getting emotional support from family & friends.
To speed up the weight loss process, you’re encouraged to do an exercise you enjoy, for example, walking, jogging, gardening…etc for at least 30 minutes a day.
The goal of Slim Fast is to get you to avoid eating high fat/high calorie foods while eating foods high in vitamins and fibers.
Through Slim Fast meals & snacks, combined with one daily meal of real food and exercise, you’ll burn more calories than what you’re taking in and lose weight.
And What Can I Eat?
Slim Fast meal replacements and snacks of course!
Slim Fast shakes, meal bars and microwaveable soups and pasta entrees are available.
Snacks can be Slim Fast snack bars, fruits, veggies, fat free yogurt, nuts, pretzels or air popped popcorn.
Throw in a “sensible” balanced meal of real food (about 600-700 calories) consisting of lean meat, fruits & veggies a day and you’re all set.
SLIM FAST SAMPLE MENU
- Slim Fast meal bar or shake
- Piece of fruit or low fat yogurt or veggies & fat free dip
- Slim Fast soup or Slim Fast & sauce with salad (6 different kinds of hot meals are offered)
- Slim Fast frozen snack or bar
- A “sensible” meal of 600 – 800 calories. For example, 4 – 6 ounces of chicken or fish, ½ a baked potato, steamed veggies or fruit
- Piece of fruit or low fat air popped popcorn
Drink plenty of water throughout the day and try to exercise for 30 minutes a daily.
* Feel free to switch the ‘real meal’ to any of the other meal slots if you prefer.
How About Exercise?
Exercising will help you burn more calories while on this diet and therefore encouraged. Pick an exercise that you like and do it for 30 minutes a day.
Research has proven that Slim Fast does indeed work.
Since 1996, twenty scientific publications have shown that Slim Fast is effective for weight loss and maintenance.
In 2003, the North American Association For The Study Of Obesity released a study showing that on average, dieters who consistently used the Slim Fast program over a 10 year period were 33 pounds lighter than people who were not on the program.
Here are the pros & cons of Slim Fast:
- Many studies have shown this is an effective diet
- Emphasis on a personalized exercise regime
- Controls calories without a need for counting through portion control
- Follows 2005 Dietary Guidelines
- Good for people who hate to cook
- Slim Fast meals readily available in supermarkets
- Low carb plan also offered
- Doesn’t really teach you good eating habits as you’re just mainly eating Slim Fast meals
- Must buy their meals, shakes & bars
- Only one meal of ‘real food’ a day
What’s The Cost Like?
Not too bad.
Slim Fast will cost you about $3 a day ($90 a month) from purchasing their Slim Fast brand of meals and snacks.
Meal replacement programs like Slim Fast do have good track records in helping dieters lose weight and in keep it off.
However, although fortified with vitamins and minerals, meal replacements can never make up all the vitamins, minerals and other nutrients of real foods. Therefore, make sure you focus on eating wholesome and nutritious foods during your one sensible meal of the day.
This diet is good for you if you hate cooking and like a structure to follow. On the other hand, you may not like this plan if you enjoy cooking and/or eating fresh foods.
Having said that, studies have shown that Slim Fast works and this is arguably one of the best meal replacement plans out there.