Losing weight is hard at the best of times. You spend hours each week working out and getting in as much exercise as possible, you watch what you eat, and you try to ensure you put only the best foods and supplements into your body. One method people use when dieting is drinking meal replacement shakes for weight loss. While a meal replacement shake can offer convenience, nutrition, and time-saving benefits, selecting the right one for your requirements is a must.
This is where research comes in handy, especially so that you can save time and brain power when selecting the ideal shake for you. So, here’s the thing, not every shake is made equal and the additives and ingredients will either help or hinder your progress. Of all the added ingredients to look out for, the one you should avoid at all costs is fructose.
What is fructose? Fructose is a sugar that naturally occurs in fruit, so, if it comes from fruit it must be good for you, right? Wrong! Fructose is one of those sugars, which, we as humans, can handle in small quantities and have done for thousands of years. However, when it comes to meal replacement shakes for weight loss and general health and well-being, fructose can prove to be a bit of a problem.
This article is going to run through all of the reasons as to why you need to avoid fructose and not just because it can hold back your weight loss efforts. Read on to learn the truth behind fructose’s negative impacts on health.
As a general rule of thumb, fructose eaten as part of a fruit is actually quite OK for you. The fact that the fruit will contain plenty of fiber, which slows down the absorption rate of fructose, helps with major issues. The problem with fructose in meal replacement shakes for weight loss is that it lacks the fiber of fruit or vegetables and tends to be in much larger amounts.
Unlike other sugars, fructose is metabolized by the liver. The fact that the liver is the only organ used by fructose can have some serious implications for your general health and well-being. When fructose builds up in the liver, it has only one outcome ... metabolizing. Now, when the liver metabolizes fructose it turns it into fat, which is then moved around the body and stored in areas such as the stomach, chest, thighs and hips. This is not what you want when trying to lose weight.
Next, the effects can become more serious. Fructose reacts with proteins in the body, which can lead to oxidization and ultimately, cellular damage. It gets worse. Fructose can also lead to insulin resistance which can cause type II diabetes (and type II diabetes can cause elevated IGF-1 (Insulin-Like Growth Factor) which is known to be a cause of cancer).
There is also a rise in the resistance of the hormone called Leptin. When an individual develops Leptin resistance, body fat is distributed around the body at an elevated rate leading to fat gain.
It is important to reiterate that it is only fructose added to products that are bad for you, not the fructose consumed when eating whole fruits and vegetable.
In a short answer, yes. A good meal replacement weight loss shake will not contain fructose. The reason why fructose is used is down to the fact that it is incredibly cheap. One final important thing to note about fructose is that it can actually leave you feeling hungrier than before you consumed it. Evidence from one study compared fructose and glucose. The participants either drank a fructose or glucose filled drink and then blood was tested 15 minutes later. Those who consumed the glucose drink showed an increase in insulin levels, which help stop hunger in its tracks. Those who consumed the fructose drink showed no insulin response and stated that they felt hungrier. So, if you want to get the most out of your weight loss efforts, avoid products containing fructose at all costs