Does SlimFast Keto Work?

The keto diet’s rise to fame has opened the door of opportunity for many manufacturers in the health and food industry. Shopping aisles are adorned with products that all proudly wear low-carb or keto-friendly labels. But calling a product keto-friendly doesn’t necessarily mean that it is healthy or that it doesn’t contain some form of hidden carbs in an ingredient you can’t pronounce. Many manufacturers have gone a step further and have formulated their own version of the keto diet, which has been built around their attractively branded products. Today, we are looking at one of these product-based keto diets aptly named The SlimFast Keto Diet to find out if it is a sustainable and healthy way to lose weight. 

What Is The SlimFast Keto Diet Plan?

The SlimFast Keto Diet Plan is built on the premise of making the traditional low-carb high fat keto diet easier to follow. This is done by replacing two of your meals with what the company calls “indulgent” and convenient shakes. The company claims to help you lose weight fast and keep it off. It also claims to deliver results in just seven days and that the average weight loss is between 1 to 2 lbs per week. The diet focuses on counting calories rather than restricting certain foods as one would on a keto diet. The diet provides roughly 1,600 calories per day for men and 1,200 calories for women per day. 

The meal plan looks something like this:

  • One high-fat, low-carb meal of your choice – must contain 500 calories.
  • Replacing two meals a day with a meal shake or bar.
  • Three SlimFast snacks in between meals.
  • Light exercise for up to 30 minutes a day.
  • 64 ounces of water throughout the day.

The company has provided what they call a clinically proven 14-day meal plan for users to follow, which they claim is convenient and helps to curb any cravings and hunger. 

Here is a sample of what three days on the meal plan looks like:

Day 1

  • A meal replacement shake mixed with water for breakfast.
  • Creamer in your coffee for a mid-morning snack.
  • A meal replacement bar for lunch.
  • Veggies with MCT oil for an afternoon snack.
  • Bunless cheeseburger for dinner.
  • A fat bomb for an evening snack.

Day 2 

  • A meal replacement shake mixed with water for breakfast.
  • Creamer in your coffee for a mid-morning snack.
  • A meal replacement shake for lunch.
  • 1-ounce block of smoked gouda cheese for an afternoon snack.
  • Baked chicken wings for dinner.
  • A fat bomb for an evening snack.

Day 3 

  • A meal replacement bar for breakfast.
  • Creamer in your coffee for a mid-morning snack.
  • Steak and arugula salad for lunch.
  • 1 hard-boiled egg and a slice of bacon for an afternoon snack.
  • A meal replacement shake for dinner.
  • Cucumbers and 1 ounce of cream cheese for an evening snack. 

The meal plan for the remaining days is quite similar to the sample above, some days allow for avocados and tuna, however, most of the main dishes are either in the form of a shake or dessert flavored bars. Men are able to tweak the meal plan by adding in a “high-fat mini-meal”, which should total to 200 calories only.

Key Differences Between The Keto Diet And The SlimFast Keto Diet

Following a low carb diet is beneficial in many ways, but to stave off any negative side effects, it must be done in a substantial way. Your body still needs certain vital nutrients to survive so it’s important to be strategic about what foods to cut from your diet. 

Keto food pyramid vs. SlimFast Keto.

These are the key differences between the two low carb diets:

The Standard Ketogenic Diet

The standard ketogenic diet or SKD has been in practice longer than most may think. It dates back to the mid-1800s and goes far beyond weight loss. The diet encourages a more natural and wholesome lifestyle to reap many of its benefits rather than just being a quick fix to melting away fat. The diet is by no means easy and is quite restrictive at times, but it forces dieters to be more aware of what they are putting into their bodies. By increasing healthy fat and cutting out carbohydrate-dense foods, your body is able to run on a more efficient source of fuel, ketones. The SKD encourages dieters to make wise food choices and take note of macronutrient ratios. The goal is to eat healthy fats, a moderate amount of protein and limit the number of carbs in your diet. It doesn’t necessarily require you to count calories, but rather keep track of carbohydrates. 

Some of the many benefits of the SKD include:

  • Reduced epileptic fits in children and young adults.
  • Encourages cleaner eating.
  • It is used as a therapeutic treatment for diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, and Parkinson’s disease. 
  • Balances blood sugar levels and reduces LDL cholesterol.
  • It improves muscle mass.
  • Improved body composition.
  • Enhances cognition.
  • Increase in energy.

A typical SKD meal plan looks like this:

  • Breakfast: Feta, portobello mushroom, and spinach omelet served with a cup of bone broth.
  • Lunch: Baked salmon served with broccoli seasoned with MCT oil.
  • Dinner: Ground beef sautéed with Roma tomatoes and onions served over zucchini noodles.
  • Snacks: blueberries, pork rinds, nuts, homemade fat bombs, zucchini fries, or fresh zucchini dipped in guacamole or full-fat cream cheese.  

The SlimFast Keto Diet

The SlimFast keto diet takes a different approach. The sole goal of the diet is to shed pounds by counting calories and replacing most of your meals with their products. In short, the idea is to make the keto diet easier and feel less restrictive because the majority of their products are dessert flavored, sweet and provide your body with beneficial nutrients. Who wouldn’t want to eat cookies and chocolate-flavored shakes all day! Unfortunately, there is one major flaw in the diet, it does not encourage anyone to eat cleaner or make wise food choices.

While there may be some beneficial ingredients in the products, it lacks essential enzymes, antioxidants, and plant compounds that you would get from eating fruits and vegetables. One ‘real’ meal a day is hardly enough to supplement the nutritional gap.

SlimFast benefits:

  • It may help you lose weight based on daily calorie intake.
  • It is convenient.
  • You only have to prepare and cook one meal.

Does The SlimFast Keto Diet Work And Is It Sustainable?

Restricting the number of calories you eat every day is going to have an impact on your weight at some point in time. When your body is deprived of carbs during the first week, it starts to excrete more water. Many low carb dieters notice that they have dropped a few pounds during this time, however, it is usually just water weight. This is more than likely where the ‘lose weight in 7 days’ claim stems from. Other than their own, there are no studies to back up the claims. One study received mixed results from the diet, stating that there is not enough evidence to prove weight outcomes from commercial weight loss programs like these. 

Even if the diet does happen to make you lose 1 to 2 lbs every week, it is by no means a sustainable way to lose weight. The diet plan consists of a lot of refined and processed foods that do not compare to the nutritional value of wholesome home-cooked meals. Eating chocolate bars, cookies, and chips albeit low carb does not constitute a healthy lifestyle. Replacing most of your meals with shakes and bars is not a long term solution and does not encourage dieters to change bad eating habits.

The act of chewing alone can help stimulate weight loss and improve digestion, so it is not a good idea to drink most of your meals. Putting that aside, the cost of these products alone is not sustainable for most. A meal shake works out to be $1.00 to $4.00 per serving. A month’s supply works out to be far more expensive than fresh produce. 

While the diet may potentially help you lose weight, it will cost more than just dollars, it could cost your health if you do not fill the nutritional gap. There is no harm in eating a meal replacement bar or shake as a treat once in a while or when you are pressed for time, but it should not become the most important part of your diet. If you want to lose weight sustainably and improve your overall health, then it’s best to stick to the traditional keto diet and bridge any nutritional gaps with a high-quality keto supplement. 

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