I am well aware that there is no such thing as a quick fix for weightloss. If you want a long-term solution, you need to overhaul your eating habits and get more active and, unfortunately, there is no shortcut. That said, I do think that meal replacement bars and shakes can be helpful at times, especially if you need a waistline-friendly option for lunch at work or if you know you have a couple of indulgent days coming up (Christmas, birthdays, Easter ...) and want to limit the damage. I was therefore intrigued to see what I'd think of the products sent through by PhD woman, described as a unique range of premium nutritional products designed to support the needs of the active woman.
They sent through two of their most popular products for me to try out, the first of which was the PhD Meal Replacement Shakes. Like similar products on the market, PhD woman recommend using up to two servings of their Meal Replacement shake daily, at any time during the day to replace a balanced meal. Unlike similar meal replacement shakes, you need to mix a 55g serving (1 scoop) with 250ml of cold water, not milk, which makes it easier to keep a sachet (or a pre-measured scoop in a little pot) along with a shaker in your desk drawer at work to knock up at a minute's notice.
The other plus point for PhD's Meal Replacement Shakes is that they are fortified with a special blend of vitamins and minerals, tailored just for women. I was going to copy out the entire list but it's just too long so have a look at the nutritional information on their website here. Each serving also contains 204 calories, 3g of fat (of which 0.7g saturates), 18g of carbs (of which 2.4g sugars), 2.5g of fibre and 25g of protein.
The shakes come in three flavours - strawberry delight, vanilla crème and chocolate cookie, which is the one I got to try. It does taste chocolatey (in a meal replacement kind of way, not a sitting-down-with-a-family-sized-bar-of-Galaxy kind of way, obviously !) but I didn't find it as creamy and filling as other meal replacement shakes I've tried, presumably because it is made with water rather than milk. From looking around online, it appears that some people prefer to ignore the instructions and make it with skimmed milk to get a richer, more satisfying texture. It does give you a sweet treat that will stop you reaching for naughty snacks and, as an alternative to the school canteen on non-diet friendly days, it's a convenient and fuss-free option. As well as helping with calorie control for weight-loss, the shakes also promise to reduce tiredness and fatigue and maintain muscle tone, but I only had three servings so I can't comment on the long term effects. A £25.99 tub contains 14 servings which works out at £1.85 per serving.
The other product I received was PhD Woman Greens and Berries, which is a new product (introduced last year). It is described as a wholesome combination of greens, fruit extracts and vegetable extracts, alongside a specific blend of vitamins and minerals tailored to help energise women throughout the day, which gives your body the nourishment and natural energy it needs in one simple, daily serving. You can add 1 scoop to 100ml of ice cold water to make a shake or you can also mix it with your favourite juice or add it to a smoothie or protein shake. I wasn't overly keen on the taste when mixed with water so I tried it with juice first thing in the morning, which was a bit better. Each serving only contains 31 calories and has no added sugars. It's labelled as having a summer fruits flavour, but it tasted more like vegetables to me (the summer fruits flavour comes from spirulina, wheat grass, goji and acai berries so don't expect it to taste of strawberries and raspberries because it won't!). As I've been trying out the Dukan 2 diet for the last couple of weeks, I like to take a dose of Greens & Berries on the Pure Protein days, to make up for the lack of fruit and veg.
The combination of 24 vitamins and minerals reportedly provides a variety of health benefits : Vitamin C helps maintain a healthy immune system; iron and folic acid help reduce tiredness and fatigue; Vitamin D and calcium help maintain healthy bones; Biotin helps maintain healthy skin and hair; Vitamin B6 helps support healthy hormonal balance. It costs £29.99 for a 31-serving tub.
star rating : 4/5
for more information : http://www.phd-woman.co.uk/
Disclosure : I received the products in order to write an honest review.