Ryan Thomason

My No Hungy Life – The Meal Replacement Test

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With my new-found discovery of trying to live a healthy lifestyle and not just eating right I’ve found that I want to explore as I find what works for me. Yes, after some 7 years of working in the health food industry sitting at a desk, working the data, I’ve decided that I want to dive into more depth of knowledge of what I’m working with. So when I got a box of samples that usually comes to our way I decided that now was a good time to experiment with an approach to use my body as the test subject, record the results and see if it’s worth adding to my new lifestyle. Some people call it Body Hacking, which is just a very geeky broad term, so yeah, I’m calling it that because I want to sound cool. I am in no way a medical professional or expert in the field. I’m just a guy that got tired of being fat and getting winded playing with his kids outside. I just happen to like to write and try to entertain people, which is why I hope you enjoy this article and can take some of it to use for yourself. The first test product that I did for a week is a meal replacement. Now, let me breakdown my daily regimen first so that everything can be made clear.

Daily Food Intake:

  • Breakfast (Within 30 minutes of waking up) – 20 to 30 grams protein (Typically 3 Whole eggs, and a meat)
  • 1st Lunch (4 Hours after Breakfast) – 20 to 30 grams protein, legumes (lentils or beans) and a large portion of steam vegetables
  • 2nd Lunch (4 Hours after 1st Lunch) – Essentially the first lunch, just smaller portions since it’s the “leftovers”. Emphasis on 20 to 30 grams of protein at the least.
  • Dinner (4 Hours after 2nd Lunch) – 20 to 30 grams protein and some kind of legumes.

Water is essential to what I’m doing also, and I consume at a minimum 100 ounces of water a day. I consume no Dairy, Fruits, or Breads. Which has been incredibly hard for me as a lover of sandwiches.

Exercise Regimen:

Monday through Friday during the workweek I hit the gym that is literally next door on my lunchbreak. 30 minutes of Jogging on a treadmill doing sit-ups to failure, and push-ups to failure after my jog.

The product I’ll be using as my 2nd lunch, and loading up with my food on my first lunch since there won’t be any leftovers is something called Diet 40 by Freshfest Whole Foods. It’s an all raw dietary meal based on an ancient health principle called “Saeng Shik” as the labeling says. Its 40 ingredients blended together to help people achieve weight loss with non-GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) ingredients. It looks to be a mixture of Grains, Fruits, Vegetables and Sea Plants. I’ll point out that on the back of the packet under the notes it says this: Diet 40 may vary slightly in odor and taste due to the different growing seasons of the ingredients. The overall integrity of the product is not compromised by the different growing season.

Uh Oh.

Every drink I made with this was consumed with 10 ounces of water, here are my daily diary results and thoughts.

First Drink Day – eh. It’s not GREAT, but not incredibly terrible as I thought it was going to be. I feel like I’m drinking grass or something earthy like, Dirt. But good dirt? Is there such a thing as good dirt? Let’s just call it earthy, I taste the PLANET. All I did was put 10oz of water in my water bottle and shook it vigorously. Maybe if I’m going this route of drinking meals I should buy one of those paint can shakers so that there is less texture and more liquid to the drink. At the end, I had no problem drinking it other than the initial fighting off gagging because of a mental block that no matter what it was going to taste terrible. Maybe their label just put me in a bad mindset.

Second Drink Day – I am ready to drink you again Plant Earth. *Drink* OK, maybe not Planet Earth, it seems to be more like, mulch. Some kind of mixture that has a hint of a flavor that makes the whole textured liquid just slightly above bland that your taste buds are wondering what is going on. Again, this isn’t undrinkable, today I had crushed ice in it to make it colder and it was considerably better than the previous days drink. A lesson learned from day one, CLEAN OUT YOUR DRINKING APPARATUS. If you let the stuff stay around without cleaning it, you’re in for a nasty smell when you take a whiff of what is left of the residue from your drink when it gets all warm and left to fester all night.

Third Drink Day – So, after having no problems yesterday with it being cold water I took this experiment a little further. If you use lukewarm water for drinking this, it will A) Not taste good and B) Smell terrible. Man, that last chug, just to finish it off, with the entire powdery residue built up at the bottom. Not Good. I was actually almost dreading this meal coming up. The time hit 3PM and I knew I was going to be chugging this thing down. I think my main gripe is that it is so unfulfilling. Yay, I’m getting 40 Raw Ingredients from all over the globe that you dump out of a packet. The powder looks like your basic grey…powdery substance. So they must blend the living crap out of this stuff. Weight Loss is still happening so this hasn’t thrown my diet off at all, it’s just become my most dreaded meal of the day.

Fourth Drink Day – I’ve been scared for this since my experiment with lukewarm water. So as I poured the piping hot water into my canister and dumped in my super blended meal replacement I steeled my will. Whatever was left of it at least? After taking that first big whiff to test the smell I nearly gagged. This product was obviously not meant to be drunk hot. Yet, for the sake of science, and my experiment as a Body Hacker, I trudged on. I waited for the brew to cool down a little bit before drinking in earnest, there is no point in scalding my tongue, though, and it might have helped. Never, ever drink this stuff hot. Ever. I couldn’t finish the whole thing, though I tried to soldier on and slam it down, I just couldn’t do it. I cannot reiterate how much that this should never be consumed hot.

Fifth Drink Day – After the catastrophic events to my taste buds after the Hot water/powder experiment, my mental capacity to stick it out for the fifth day didn’t take hold. Running to and gagging in the company bathroom after that last drink yesterday didn’t help either. I ate a can of Tuna with a bag of steamed veggies instead.

Final Thoughts:

As a meal replacement I didn’t survive the 4 hours until my next meal feeling “full”. By the time dinner came around I was ready to eat after my stomach did some quiet gurgling as I was cooking. Substituting it as my after my work meal out didn’t have any ill effects on weight loss for the days (typically between .5 – 1.2lbs). Though it is a heavy cut in my protein intake I would normally do at that meal (Each pack is 4grams, so it’s a 26gram protein loss) it is a leap in a different direction of my daily Carbs (10% of daily) and Fibers (20% of daily). My recovery from workouts seemed to stay the same as if I were eating my normal meals, so, for being something that I just drank for substance instead I’d have to say that is a plus. The fact that I would eat probably over 40 grams of protein at my first lunch because there were no leftovers for second lunch might have played a factor in that, which is a test for another day. Essentially, it saved me a ton of prep time preparing my meal so that helps.

If you’re the type who can live with slamming down a quick 10z mixed drink meal I wouldn’t totally say that this product is a bust. My biggest concern was that I have this as my after workout meal and that it would have some kind of effect on my recovery time. Thankfully that was all it was, a concern. It didn’t however win me over to supplement that meal from here on out. Because of the bland taste, lack of enjoyment out of drinking it, and just the overall experience I personally won’t be drinking any Fresh Fest Whole Foods diet40 meals. That’s just me though, as it shouldn’t discern you from trying it out yourself, just make sure that you drink it as cold as possible since that seemed to be the way I enjoyed the most over the course of the week.

Best of luck in your healthy lifestyle, remember, don’t be afraid to try new things. Ok, try new things within reason, and consultation of your Doctor. Did I mention I’m not a Doctor? I’m not.

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