Mothers Listen! Teens Don’t Benefit from Meal Replacements : A Study

What if I begin today’s post with: Though a study is putting its stamp on this Fact now; I knew it always. Then don’t consider it as haughty.

How I knew that, later, first the study:

According to a latest study published in the journal Obesity, Meal Replacements may help obese teens initially lose weight but they fail to continue being more effective than regular diets for long term weight control.

The study led by Dr. Robert L. Berkowitz of Philadelphia’s Children’s Hospital found that in initial stages of dieting, meal replacements are effective for teens. However, in the long run, meal replacements are only as effective as standard diets in terms of controlling weight.

What is Meal Replacement: Meal replacements may constitute meal bars, shakes and other pre-prepared food rations which contain determined amounts of calories and nutrition.

According to Dr. Berkowitz and his colleagues, the efficacy of the meal replacements in initial stages of diets may be due to the fact that they offer a certain way for dieters, especially teens, of how much calories and nutrition they consume on a daily basis. But as people, even teens, often do not correctly estimate how much food they consume every day; the meal replacement proves less effective later.

How the study was conducted: 113 obese teens were divided into three groups.
The diet followed by each group is as follows:

Group 1: Took a standard 1300- to 1500-calorie per day diet for a year
Group 2: Took some meal replacement diet for four-month and after that switched to an eight-month low-calory diet.
Group 3: Took meal replacements for an entire year.

RESULT:  During the first phase of the study, the group on the meal replacements diets outperformed those on standard low-calorie diets by losing 6.3 percent in Body Mass Index (BMI) compared to 3.8 percent for those on a standard diet.

During the second phase, all groups gained weight.

During the third phase, those on standard diets lost 2.8 percent of their BMI, meal replacement and standard diet group lost 3.9 percent of their BMI and the straight meal replacement group lost 3.4 percent of their BMI.

Verdict: A standard 1300- to 1500-calorie per day diet is the way to go.

Why I knew the finding of the study to be true: For one simple question, How tough is for an adult to continue with a restricted and sometimes less on taste diet for too long? The answer is: Very Tough. As that’s against a Teen’s psychology. That’s why we see so many people with extra weight on everywhere we Go.

Now isn’t it unrealistic to tell a teen to have such a diet to shed pounds?

What is needed is a lifestyle change, Standard or regular food with some occasional bad food, and some activity that is incorpoarted slowly and hightened till the kid doesn’t develop a fitness culture inside him/her. And last but not the least, DON’T try to thrust a routine on the teen; try to indoctrinate him/her with your well wisher plans as if giving Suggestions. One other good way is to put a challenge to the Teen: Like saying “I don’t think it’s possible for a Teen living in cities to b as active as a teen in a countryside; Is it possible?” And don’t forget to reward the Teen too, irrespective of whether he/she proves you wrong or not—Even Trying is worthy of a Reward.

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