If you watch television, read magazines or newspapers, or visit your local supermarket, you have most likely heard about the Slim-Fast diet. Perhaps you or someone you know has utilized Slim-Fast products, either successfully losing weight or not. There are several factors to consider to determine if this plan is right for you.
Basics of the Slim-Fast Diet
First launched in 1977, this line of weight management products has spread to world-wide success with dozens of options for all types of dietary needs. There are four basic keys to success with the program:
- Diet: Controlled portions and healthy meals help form nutritional eating habits.
- Activity: Exercise is a necessary component to a healthy lifestyle at any weight.
- Tools: To successfully manage weight, individuals need to be aware of their body's proportions and what goals are best to work toward.
- Support: Without a supportive community of friends and family to encourage healthy habits and a positive self-image, dieters may revert to overeating and emotional eating.
For more than 25 years, Slim Fast has emphasized the concepts of weight management and progress rather than perfection or unattainable ideals. Contrary to its name, the company does not encourage rapid loss but instead encourages individuals to move forward at a pace that suits their body and lifestyle to reach healthy goals and lifetime habits.
With Slim Fast's latest 3-2-1 Plan, your menu will consist of three snacks, two shakes or meal bars, and one meal of your choice. The meal should be healthy and well-balanced.
Slim-Fast products are made in a factory, not pulled off a tree. This analogy is made simply to describe the extent of processing the prepackaged shakes and bars go through. Unlike a whole food, such as an apple or orange, the products need to have a long shelf life in the stores and warehouses. This means that there are many preservatives added, as well as flavorings and stabilizers to make the products look and taste good. This is not say that the little cappuccino delight shake is not chock-full of essential vitamins, minerals, protein, carbohydrates, and healthy fats. In fact, the company prides itself on its balanced blend of nutrition in each of its items. If you need to get your eating balanced toward proper nutrition, the Slim-Fast products will do that for you.
Types of Products
Since its inception over 25 years ago, Slim-Fast has made numerous adjustments to its food formulas to meet the needs of its customers and potential customers. The latest plan called 3-2-1 contains the following products:
- Shakes and shake mixes: Choose from creamy shakes in flavors such as French Vanilla, Milk Chocolate, Cappuccino, Strawberries and Cream, Dark Chocolate, and even lower-carb versions. Shake mixes come in regular and high-protein versions and in a variety of flavors similar to the shakes.
- Meal bars: Replace an entire meal with an option such as Chewy Chocolate Crisp Meal Bar, Chocolate Cookie Dough Meal Bar, Chocolate Peanut Caramel Meal Bar, Trail Mix Meal Bar, or Sweet & Salty Chocolate Almond Meal Bar.
- Snacks: You can enjoy treats such as Chocolate Mint Bars, Chocolate Nougat Gone Nuts, Chocolatey Vanilla Blitz, and Double-Dutch Chocolate Bars.
Where to Buy
Slim-Fast products are widely available at grocery and discount stores. They are typically shelved with diet and weight management products near vitamins and other supplements. The products are also available online through the company's official site. Other online shopping options include Amazon and Drugstore.com.
Benefits of Slim-Fast
Indeed, there are many advantages to hopping on the Slim-Fast diet wagon. Here are the major pluses to consider:
- No counting calories or points
- Meal plans created to fit your caloric and nutritional needs
- Morning meal replacement strongly encouraged, which helps reduce daily calorie consumption
- Little or no food preparation
- Easy to follow
- Able to incorporate favorite foods into your day to an extent
- Balanced nutrition
- Products widely available at most supermarkets or online
A Look at the Disadvantages
As with any diet program, there are disadvantages with the Slim Fast plan. Some of the main disadvantages include the following:
- Strict restrictions
- Deprivation of many foods
- Difficult to find all the products
- Not practical when you're out
- Promotes yo-yo dieting
It is important for those who are on the plan to keep portion control in mind. Without this chief habit set in place, you may continue yo-yo eating and dieting indefinitely.
The Slim-Fast products are produced by the Unilever Corporation, the world's largest company of consumer products. Besides the Slim-Fast product line, they are responsible for Lipton teas and soups, Wishbone salad dressings, Promise and Country Crock spreads, Hellmann's dressings, Bertolli pasta and sauce, Ragu sauces, Klondike and Breyers frozen items, and several laundry detergent, soap, face, and hair products. For this reason, be aware of the intense marketing and advertising tools that the company may present.
The key to any diet and weight management plan, including Slim-Fast, is to be committed to the program. Because this company emphasizes life management rather than rapid solutions, it is a long-term commitment that can lead to superb results as dieters adjust their lives to healthier habits.