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36% of Meal Replacement Powders and Shakes Fail ConsumerLab.com's Tests of Quality

White Plains, New York, July 26, 2016 — Nutritionally balanced powders and read-to-drink shakes can help people lose weight, improve blood sugar control, build muscle, and provide a healthful alternative to snacks. However, recent ConsumerLab.com tests of popular meal replacement and weight management products revealed that more than one-third provided more sodium, sugar, or calories, or less protein, than listed on labels. One product, had something you might not expect, and certainly wouldn't want -- contamination with the heavy metal cadmium. Each of these problems was confirmed in a second, independent laboratory.

Among the nine products which were Approved for their quality, ConsumerLab.com selected three as Top Picks.

"Although eating whole foods is preferable, meal replacement shakes can help people for whom it is difficult to put together a nutritionally balanced meal. These shakes should not become the primary source of nutrition, but they can be much better than snacks or fast food due to their balance of proteins, fats (typically unsaturated), and a mix of carbohydrates which often includes fiber," said Tod Cooperman, M.D., ConsumerLab.com's President.

ConsumerLab.com's Meal Replacement and Weight Management Powders and Beverages is now available online at https://www.consumerlab.com/reviews/meal_replacement_and_weight_management_powders_and_beverages/meal_replacement/. It includes test results and quality comparisons for the following 13 products, of which 11 were selected for testing by ConsumerLab.com and two which are included for having passed the same testing through CL's voluntary Quality Certification Program: Atkins Day Break Strawberry Banana Shake, FitMiss Delight Chocolate Delight, Garden of Life RAW Organic Meal Vanilla, Herbalife Formula 1 Healthy Meal French Vanilla, IsAgenix IsaLean Shake Natural Berry Harvest, Jarrow Formulas The Slim Whey Green Tea, Metagenics UltraMeal Rice Vanilla, Naturade Total Soy Chocolate, Nature's Plus Spiru-Tein Vanilla, SlimFast Advanced Nutrition Creamy Chocolate, Soylent, Special K Protein Vanilla Cappuccino and Vega One All-In-One Nutritional Shake French Vanilla.

The report also summarizes the clinical evidence regarding the use of meal replacement products, provides comparisons of the nutrient content and cost of each product, and explains how to choose the best product based on your individual needs.

Founded in 1999, ConsumerLab.com is a leading provider of consumer information and independent evaluations of products that affect health and nutrition. Membership to ConsumerLab.com is available online and provides immediate access to reviews of more than 1,000 products from over 400 brands. The company is privately held and based in Westchester, New York. It has no ownership from, or interest in, companies that manufacture, distribute, or sell consumer products.