Study reported that liquid meal replacements in weight loss diets lead to modest reductions in cardiometabolic risk factors for overweight and obese patients with type 2 diabetes.
Liquid meal replacements provide a mixture of carbohydrates, fat, and protein, along with added vitamins and minerals, in a ready-to-drink form or in powder formulas that require mixing. Meal replacement shakes are frequently used to replace one or two main meals each day and are often supplemented with fruits, vegetables, and nuts to achieve the targeted daily caloric intake. The study was published in Diabetes Care on March 28, 2019.
Jarvis C. Noronha, from St. Michael's Hospital in Toronto and colleagues conducted a systematic literature review of randomized trials of two weeks or longer assessing the effect of liquid meal replacements as compared to conventional weight loss diets on cardiometabolic risk factors in overweight/obese patients with type 2 diabetes. As a part of study, authors included nine studies with 961 patients. The researchers found mean differences for body weight −2.37 kg, body mass index −0.87 kg/m², body fat −1.66 percent, waist circumference −2.24 cm, hemoglobin A1c −0.43 percent, fasting glucose −0.63 mmol/L, fasting insulin −11.83 pmol/L, systolic blood pressure −4.97 mm Hg, and diastolic blood pressure −1.98 mm Hg.
Furthermore, no effect was seen for meal replacement on blood lipids. Due to imprecision and/or inconsistency, the overall certainty of the evidence was low to moderate. Several authors disclosed financial ties to the food and pharmaceutical industries. "More high-quality randomized controlled trials investigating the effect of liquid meal replacements as part of a weight loss diet on cardiometabolic risk factors are needed to address the uncertainties and assess whether there are differences among different types of liquid meal replacements," said the authors.
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