When you read Charlie and the Chocolate Factory as a child, how desperate were you for the three course meal in one piece of chewing gum to be a reality? I wanted it so badly. As I read it I swear I could feel the hot tomato soup at the back of my throat, followed by the rich, roast beef.
(I stopped imagining before I turned into a blueberry obviously. No one wants that.)
I’ve always been kind of fascinated by the idea of meal replacements. In old school science fiction people of the future were forever knocking back tiny pills as substitutes for entire meals and the principle really appeals to me – I’d never have to worry about ‘accidentally’ eating 14 Oreos ever again. Everything would be so simple. I’d be so slim…
Of course despite what the stories would have us believe, a meal in a pill could never be a thing. You just can’t get the calories you need into such a small thing. Back to the Oreos for me then.
Or is it?
For the last couple of weeks I’ve been trialling a meal replacement system called Solo. Solo is a vegan, allergen free, dairy and gluten free meal replacement powder that you mix up with water to make a shake. It contains all 26 essential vitamins and minerals, 100% of your recommended fibre intake, and can in theory entirely replace regular food.
I say ‘regular food’, but Solo IS food. That’s key here. It’s not some kind of artificially produced powder, it’s made with natural whole foods – wholegrain gluten free oats, pea protein, flaxseed, coconut – real food. There are 42g of protein in each serving, so it fills you up too. I’m genuinely not hungry for several hours after a Solo shake, and I can eat pretty much anything, any time. (See above about the Oreos.)
If totally switching to shakes sounds a little drastic for you, then think of it more as an adhoc time saver – you’re busy in the morning, the Oreos are whispering, but you resist. Instead you make up a Solo shake and tada! You’re got yourself a quick, easy and nutritionally balanced breakfast. Even better, the fact that it’s a liquid makes it easier for you to digest – another health benefit.
Solo comes in either a 28 meal jar or a 4 meal jar, and you can choose from six flavours. I’ve tried the caffe latte and the wild strawberry flavours and I’ve enjoyed them both. Yes, there is a bit of a grainy texture to get used to, but this isn’t McDonalds right? If you do want a smoother finish you can pop it in a blender but honestly, I didn’t find it offensive at all. If anything, it somehow made it more satisfying having that little bit of texture.
I’m trying to lose a little bit of weight at the moment, just because I know I’ve put on a few extra pounds over the last year or so, and knowing that I can make up an easy, nutritious meal with just a few scoops of powder and a quick shake is really useful. There’s no temptation at all to give yourself that extra slice of cheese, or extra dollop of mayo with your sandwich – it’s just there, no messing.
I’ve always said that I thought I would find it much easier to lose weight if it was something you could just give up completely, like smoking, and in a way Solo feels a bit like this. It takes the stress out of healthy eating because you simply don’t have to think about it.
Win a 28 meal supply of Solo
If you fancy giving Solo a go then I’ve got a big 28 meal jar waiting here for you to try. To enter, visit the Solo store and leave a comment on this post telling me which flavour you’d like to try.
Register your comment on the widget below and in doing so you’ll open up a selection of bonus entries. The more of these you do, the higher your chances of winning. The competition will close at 11.59pm on November 18th and is open to UK residents only. Full T&Cs apply.
I was sent two sample jars of Solo to try for the purposes of this review. All opinions my own.