Meal replacement drinks and bars are often used by people who want to lose weight or by health-conscience individuals on the run. They are quick and easy ways to get nourishment and supplements when a healthy meal is not available. What many don't realize however, is while they may be better than junk food, meal replacements do have side effects.
Meal replacements are supposed to be healthy alternatives when a regular meal is not available. But some people actually experience greater hunger from these drinks and bars.
Meal replacement drinks are not appropriate for all people. Because they are liquid calories, some people use this as an excuse to overeat, thus consuming more calories than advisable for daily adult intake.
One of the common meal replacement side effects from both drinks or bars is thirst. These products can dry out the mouth, and people end up drinking large quantities of fluids, which they then retain.
Some meal replacement products can act like diuretics, increasing the urge to go to the bathroom more than expected.
While most meal replacement products have a number of vitamins, individuals who rely on them are not getting all the nutrition they need for optimal health. The likelihood of losing nutrients increases with the constant urination. So, taking a multivitamin and making sure to eat well-balanced meals and several healthy snacks daily is essential.
Occasional use of meal replacement products is not going to have long-term negative affects on the body. If people adopt a diet that relies heavily on these products, however, one of the common meal replacement side effects is weight gain once they begin eating real food again.