Meal Replacement vs Protein Shakes: What is the difference?

Posted on Jul 18, 2022 by Macro Mike

As a consumer, choosing the right protein and supplement products to suit your goals and lifestyle can feel incredibly overwhelming with so many options in front of you. There is alot of confusion surrounding the difference between a meal replacement shake and a protein shake. These products whilst similar, are different and serve different purposes.  It’s important to be aware of the differences so that you can make an informed decision on which product is right for you!

What is a Meal Replacement? 

A meal replacement shake is a drink that is formulated and designed to replace a wholefood meal, whilst still providing the same nutritional value to the consumer. Meal replacements will commonly contain substantial amounts of protein, fibre, healthy fats, and a spectrum of vitamins and minerals to provide the full nutrition of a standard meal. Meal replacements can commonly come in a ready-to-drink form, or in the form of a powder that can be mixed with water or milk. Meal replacement shakes tend to have an average of 150-400 calories, with the intention of being more filling and satiating. Meal replacement shakes are great for those who struggle to reach their daily intake of wholefoods and provide a healthy alternative to opting for an unhealthy snack.

What is a Protein Shake?

A protein shake is a drink formulated with high amounts of protein designed to supplement a normal healthy diet. They are an easy and convenient way to ensure you are getting enough protein in your diet. Protein is known to effectively assist muscle repair and recovery, support a healthy metabolism, increase satiety, and support weight loss goals. Most protein powders are derived from a food source and concentrated into a fine powder form. Generally, protein powder can pack anywhere from 15-30g protein per serving. Protein powders can be consumed as a shake mixed with any milk/water, used in baking, or added to smoothies and smoothie bowls to boost the protein content.

Which one is right for me?

If you’re someone who lives a busy and active life, you probably find yourself looking for convenient products that will keep you fuelled whilst supporting your healthy lifestyle on-the-go. If this is you, then meal replacement shakes might be a great idea to ensure that your body is getting all the nutrients it needs to function properly. Whether you work in the business world and find yourself in and out of meetings all day, or just simply struggle to find the time to put together a healthy nutritious meal, a meal replacement shake could really benefit your lifestyle and overall health.  They will keep you full for longer and save you time on food preparation when life gets busy and hectic! 

Now, do you want the good news?! Macro Mike has just launched our very own meal replacement – The Macro Shake! This all-in-one nutritious meal replacement shake is jam packed with protein, vitamins, and minerals to FUEL your body when you're on-the-go! The Macro Shake contains all the vitamins and minerals of a balanced meal. The Macro Shake can be taken in place of high-sugar cereals or other typical breakfast foods. It also makes a great nutritious addition to your daily smoothies to supercharge your meal! Powered by our signature roasted peanut protein and Australian grown Faba Bean Protein, this really is the TASTIEST plant-based, all-natural meal replacement in the universe! The Macro Shake comes in two drool-worthy flavours – Choc PB Swirl and PB Vanilla Ice-Cream!  We recommend taking the Macro Shake in conjunction with a nutritious and balanced diet for best results!  Simply mix 1.5 level scoops with 300-330 ml of water/plant-based milk, or even blend into a delicious smoothie! 

If you aren’t someone who struggles with their daily meal intake but would still like to supplement your active lifestyle and increase your daily protein intake, protein shakes could be the pick for you! Protein shakes make a great meal supplement and can be taken before or after exercise to maximise your performance and recovery. As our muscles rely on protein sources to grow and recover from physical training, protein shakes are a great way to support your training regime.  Protein shakes would suit most athletes, gym goers, adventurers or anyone undertaking any regular physical activity. A protein shake is not a meal replacement, it is to be consumed as an addition to a healthy balanced diet consisting of full meals. Protein shakes also make a convenient tasty snack in between meals for those looking to increase their daily protein intake and improve muscle mass.

Both products have their own separate uses and benefits. It’s important to choose the right product to suit your own specific goals. If you are still unsure of which product may be right for you, we would recommend consulting a health professional for personalised advice.