Vegan Weight Loss Shakes: #1 Shake for Weight Loss
If you are like me, you’ve tried everything to lose weight (especially belly fat) after having kids. No matter what I do, I seem to be caught in a cycle of weight gain – stress eating – more weight gain – more stress.
Even spending hours at the gym didn’t make a huge impact. It turns out, what you EAT is more important than working out when it comes to weight loss!
Earlier this year, my husband and I planned to go to Mexico on vacation without the kids (HECK YES!!!) So, I started a workout routine to lose some weight before we left. I found a 30-day Yoga Shred program with Sadie Nardini (love, love, love her) and focused on completing it every day. I tried to eat healthier but definitely did not eliminate any common allergens like soy, gluten, dairy, sugar. So, the diet portion didn’t really work out for me.
I lost 4 pounds after spending 30 days working out. Trust me, I loved the yoga routine, but something was missing.
Only later did I determine that it was my diet! The vegan weight loss shakes that I discovered have helped me lose 10 pounds (so far) and keep it off. AND I feel amazing.
“As a rule of thumb, weight loss is generally 75 percent diet and 25 percent exercise. An analysis of more than 700 weight loss studies found that people see the biggest short-term results when they eat smart.
On average, people who dieted without exercising for 15 weeks lost 23 pounds; the exercisers lost only six over about 21 weeks. It’s much easier to cut calories than to burn them off.
For example, if you eat a fast-food steak quesadilla, which can pack 500-plus calories, you need to run more than four miles to ‘undo’ it!
Shawn M. Talbott, PhD, nutritional biochemist and former director of the University of Utah Nutrition Clinic (Source)
Vegan Weight Loss Shakes: The Power of Protein…but which one?
A cornerstone of our Healthy Living 30-day Jumpstart program is protein. But, how are you supposed to know which protein powder is the best? I’ve stood in the grocery store aisle forever comparing labels and not really understanding what to buy.
Before I started this journey, I would usually go for whatever is cheapest and say “Meh, they are probably all the same.” Boy, was I wrong! I wish I knew then what I know now about my favorite vegan weight loss shakes!
Here are the options:
Whey contains milk and casein. If you struggle with dairy (as many people do), then whey is NOT for you. Consuming high doses can cause acne, stomach pains, cramps, and more. (Source)
Whey is left over when milk is coagulated during the process of cheese production and contains everything that is soluble from milk after the pH is dropped to 4.6 during the coagulation process. It is a 5% solution of lactose in water, with some minerals and lactalbumin. The fat is removed and then processed for human foods. Processing can be done by simple drying, or the relative protein content can be increased by removing lipids and other non-protein materials. For example, spray drying after membrane filtration separates the proteins from whey. (Wikipedia)
New studies suggest that eating large amounts of soy’s estrogen-mimicking compounds might reduce fertility in women, trigger early puberty and disrupt development of fetuses and children. (Source)
While there is research supporting moderate soy consumption to prevent breast cancer, high soy intakes can also increase the risk for cancer. Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences notes that when it comes to isoflavones, more doesn’t mean better. Consuming high levels for extended periods could have negative effects. The recommended intake should be between 35 to 55 milligrams per day, according to the Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences.
Vegan (Or Plant-Based) Protein
To be a Vegan-certified protein, it has to be made WITHOUT Soy, Dairy, Nuts, Other common Allergens, and artificial flavors. They must not be tested on animals or have any animal-derived GMOs. (Source)
Here’s another thing you probably already know – Vegan Protein Powder is yucky. Blah, nasty, hard to get down your guzzle.
What I have discovered is the best-tasting protein powder for vegan weight loss shakes ever.
*The Vegan Weight Loss Shakes that I am going to tell you about have a LONG list of ingredients that are not included. They are certified Vegan, Gluten-free, Non-GMO, cruelty-free and so much more. See the list here.
So, what’s in this protein powder that I use for my vegan weight loss shakes? A blend of easy-to-digest vegan protein from pea, rice, and cranberry, as well as functional fats, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, flax seed, and a unique botanical blend.
Basically, the perfect protein. And two scoops contain 20 grams of protein, so you will stay full longer!
Did I mention that it’s delicious?
Why Plant-Based Protein for Vegan Weight Loss Shakes?
Amino acids, including some branched-chain amino acids, are the basic building blocks of proteins, which help support muscle, lean muscle mass, and even bone health.
The plant-based blend of pea and rice proteins is comparable to animal-based proteins in providing a 100% amino acid score to efficiently meet your amino acid need.
Dairy and soy proteins are considered common allergens, and soy protein can be a source of unwanted phytoestrogenic activity. Those following a vegan diet may need a high-protein product to get the necessary amount of protein, as fruits and vegetables are low in protein.
Which protein should you choose?
That depends on your personal needs. Focus on the protein that is CLEAN and made from clinically-proven ingredients.
Here is the protein shake recipe I drink 1-2 times a day for better nutrition and improved weight management.
Vegan Weight Loss Shakes: The #1 Smoothie Recipe for Weight Loss
1 Banana (Here’s a great reason to include them in your smoothies: Medical Insights: Bananas and exercise recovery)
2 Scoops Chocolate Vegan Protein Powder*
1 Scoop Smart Coffee (Wait – what is smart coffee? Find out more here)
1 tbsp Flax Seed
1 scoop Daily Fiber Boost* – most of us aren’t getting enough fiber, here’s an easy way to add it
1 Digestion Plus* – probiotics and prebiotics – everything to get your system flowing and heal your gut.
2 cups spinach
1/2 scoop Elevate Smart Coffee (Read more about this smart coffee here, “Here’s my DELICIOUS Coffee Stomach Ache Cure!“)
1/2 cup frozen fruit (I prefer blueberries, blackberries, strawberries)
Almond milk and/or water
Mix it together in your blender and you are starting your day by putting so much good stuff in your body! Your body will thank you.
Obviously, this is my personal preference based on my tastes. If you would like to know how to build a complete balanced, meal-replacement protein shake, check out this article, “How to Make a Healthy Protein Shake.”
Top 20 Prohibited Ingredients
Currently, the US prohibits 11 ingredients from being included in nutrition, skin care, and cosmetic products: https://www.fda.gov/Cosmetics/GuidanceRegulation/LawsRegulations/ucm127406.htm
The vegan protein powder I mentioned takes it another step and prohibits over 2,000 ingredients. Here are the top 20:
- Animal products or by-products
Since our products are certified vegan, we do not formulate with animal products or by-products, including, but not limited to, dairy, honey, beeswax, and silk. This also contributes to the dairy-free status of our nutrition products.
- Artificial flavors and sweeteners
We do not formulate with artificial flavors or sweeteners in our products, choosing instead for naturally derived flavor and sweetener components.
- Formaldehyde-donating preservatives
Formaldehyde is a known human carcinogen that is also linked to asthma and developmental toxicity, therefore we do not use formaldehyde-donating preservatives. This includes, but is not limited to, quaternium-15, DMDM hydantoin, imidazolidinyl urea, and methylisothiazolinone.
Hydroquinone is a skin lightener that causes skin irritation and may be linked to certain cancers.
Some parabens have been linked to endocrine disruption, which may increase the risk of certain cancers. Therefore, we do not use any parabens, including ethylparaben, butylparaben, isobutylparaben, isopropylparaben, methylparaben, and propylparaben.
Petrolatum, commonly known as petroleum jelly, is a skin protectant that is a by-product of petroleum. It typically contains the impurity polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), which have been linked to cancer.
Phthalates [i.e., dibutylphthalate (DBP), dimethylphthalate (DMP), diethylphthalate (DEP)] are plasticizing ingredients commonly used in fragrances as a solvent and skin fixative. Phthalates have been linked to endocrine disruption and may cause birth defects.
- Sodium laureth sulfate (SLES) and sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS)
Sodium laureth sulfate (SLES) and sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) are harsh surfactants that can cause skin irritation or allergic reactions. Moreover, SLES often contains the impurity 1,4-dioxane, a by-product from its manufacturing process, which is a potential carcinogen.
- Synthetic fragrances and dyes
Since many synthetic fragrances and dyes are petroleum-derived, they may contain components which are potential hormone disruptors, allergens, and environmental toxins.
Triclosan is an antibacterial agent which causes skin irritation and has been linked to endocrine disruption. It is also bioaccumulative and potentially toxic to aquatic organisms.
- Ethanolamines (MEA/DEA/TEA)
Frequently used in cosmetics as emulsifiers, foaming agents or pH adjusters. Based on studies, they are linked to organ system toxicity, cancer, and environmental concerns of bioaccumulation.
- Butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT)/Butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA)
Petroleum-derived antioxidants used to extend shell life of product, BHA and BHT can induce allergic reactions in skin. They are also likely carcinogens and hormone disruptors.
- Methylisothiazolinone (MIT) and methylchloroisothiazolinone (MCT)
Together commonly called as Kathon CG. Chemical preservative widely used in cosmetics that are the most common irritants, sensitizers, and causes of contact skin allergies. Also linked to lung toxicity and possible neurotoxicity.
Ingredients such as wheat, rye, and barley contain gluten protein may cause major health issues to those with gluten intolerance, sensitivity or allergy. Oat may contain gluten if exposed to cross-contamination from gluten-containing crops, so all oats used in our products are certified gluten-free.
- Peanuts and tree nuts
Ingredients derived from peanuts and tree nuts can cause potential allergic reactions in many people, and we opt to avoid such ingredients in our nutrition products. A number of our skincare products are formulated with extracts from coconut or shea seeds.
Soy and soy derivatives may contain protein which may cause potential allergic reactions in many people.
- High fructose corn syrup
High fructose corn syrup has been utilized often in sodas and other beverages, and researchers are now questioning whether it can contribute to obesity and other health concerns. Until there is clear evidence of its safety, we choose to avoid its use in our Nutrition products.
- Canola Oil
Canola oil is derived from the rapeseed plant, and while there is still no clear indication of health risks associated with this material, there is a strong potential that sources of canola oil are GMO-derived.
- Trans Fats
Trans fats are well researched for their detrimental effects on cholesterol levels — namely, increasing LDL (bad) cholesterol and reducing HDL (good) cholesterol — and increasing the risk of diabetes, heart disease, and stroke.
Talc is used in cosmetics as an anti-caking or bulking agent. Talc can be contaminated with asbestos fibers which possess risks for respiratory toxicity and cancer.
Never heard of some of these? Me either! But, aren’t you glad you can rest easy that nothing bad for you will be included in your vegan protein weight loss shakes?