Special K Challenge Review - Does This Meal Replacement System Work? Are lack of results and unhealthy weight loss deal breakers?PUBLISHED: 09/17/2015 | BY: SUMMER BANKS, SENIOR REVIEWER
The Special K Challenge generated a lot of buzz with their “What will you gain when you lose” campaign, so we decided to put their claims to the test with one of our in-depth reviews. We looked at the ingredients, side effects, health concerns, customer service, and scientific research behind their claims. We also looked at the reviews we found online to see if the Special K Challenge was indeed a healthy way to lose weight.
What You Need to Know
The Special K Challenge is a meal replacement plan where you replace each of your meals with one of Special K’s product offerings. This is a brilliant marketing ploy and resulted in increased sales for Kellogg. For breakfast, lunch, and dinner, dieters can have a serving of Special K cereal, Special K waffles, or Special K Protein bars. The meals are readily available at most grocery stores, and can be taken just about anywhere, making this diet convenient and easy to follow.
Kellogg’s has been around since 1906, and they’re a well-known, reputable company in the food industry. This diet was introduced in 2011 as a way to reduce caloric intake while making sure that your body gets the fiber it needs. This diet is affordable and easy to follow, there’s plenty of support online, and Kellogg’s customer service is easy to get ahold of, but read on…
Lack of Results – Minimal weight loss or weight gain
The Special K Challenge leads to minimal weight loss, or even weight gain. Most people that took this challenge initially gained weight as their body got used to a dangerously low caloric intake. “The Special K Challenge has dieters consuming less than 900 calories per day,” said our research editor. “This can put the body in starvation mode, and can lead to weight gain as our bodies retain water weight.”
“I gained three pounds on the Special K Challenge,” said one user.
“I was always hungry, and couldn’t fill my stomach with the foods they offered,” said another.
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Unsafe Weight Loss – Another Concern
Because of the low caloric intake encouraged by the Special K Diet, many experts have called this diet an unsafe way to lose weight. “The Special K Challenge only allows dieters to consume a maxiumum of 829 calories per day, which isn’t enough to keep the body healthy,” said one expert online. This diet also pushes their own foods, some of which contain high amounts of sugar, making it harder to lose weight.
“Without balance and a normal caloric intake, long term weight loss is unsustainable,” said another. Many customers agreed with these experts as well. “I felt like my body wasn’t getting enough, the Special K products just weren’t giving me the calories I needed to make it through the day,” said one review.
Our experts have researched weight loss habits and have shown that if there’s something particularly troublesome about a diet (cost, side effects, unhealthy recommendations, difficult workouts, etc.) the likelihood of sustained weight loss is significantly lower. If the Special K Challenge really does promote a dangerously low caloric intake, this could make weight loss difficult for many people.
Most experts recommend a balanced third meal with the Special K Challenge. “With a third meal, participants see an average daily intake of 1500 calories, which is a healthy number for those trying to lose 2-3 pounds per week,” said one expert.
There’s plenty of science out there proving that the fewer calories you eat, the more weight you’ll lose, so the Special K Challenge definitely has that going for it. Unfortunately there’s also research proving that it’s unhealthy to consume less than 1200 calories per day for the average adult. The Special K Challenge encourages abnormally low caloric intake, which can be dangerous for many people. If you follow their plan completely, you’ll likely lose weight, but you could also experience major health issues. We recommend a balanced diet with supplements that are scientifically proven to help you burn fat and boost your metabolism.
The Bottom Line
The Special K Challenge was an intriguing review for us. Anytime a company that has been around for over 100 years, like Kellogg’s has, we tend to believe what they say. Unfortunately the low caloric intake that they encourage is proven to be an unhealthy path to sustainable weight loss. Because of that, we can’t recommend this as a weight loss plan that we would endorse. We’re also concerned with the lack of results and the absence of exercise recommendations to accompany this diet plan.
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