Huel is a powdered meal replacement product that markets itself as “a nutritionally complete food.” Huel claims that they sold enough meals “to feed Paris and Rome.” The website is impressive and full of press releases and expert testimony. One expert cited on their website says “As a dietitian, real food is ideal.” Exactly- and great advice. But, since when is a powdered meal replacement “real food?”
Our research team had to know why this company is so popular. Despite Huel’s convenience and nutrition, and claims of being “real food”, our crew found some complaints on its texture and taste. On top of that, the fact that the company doesn’t fully refund a package that’s been opened. This drove the team to give you all the info you need so you don’t waste your money on a product that will leave you dissatisfied.
Huel can be purchased through their Official Site.
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What is Huel?
Huel is food in powder-form that contains proteins, carbs, and fats. It also contains 100% of the FDA’s daily recommended values of all 27 essential vitamins and minerals.
It is a nutritionally complete food that you can use it as a meal replacement on-the-go. The name comes from the amalgamation of the words human and fuel.
However, calories from meal replacement products could be too much or too little, and it is often unclear from the ingredients themselves. Also, this is not a meal replacement for everyone, as some users commented that they were hungry again after only a few hours of consuming Huel.
The formula is also available as Huel RTD (ready-to-drink).
Huel began in 2012 when its founder set out to create a program that would help people get optimal nutrition to assist in their physical performance. The founder, Julian Hearn, put himself on a highly strict regimen with a lot of careful planning and preparation to ensure each meal provided the necessary nutrition to its users.
While he got the results he wanted from the program, he found it wasn’t practical regarding the time that it took to manage it all. Huel was then born as a nutritionally complete and balanced meal that users could prepare in two minutes or less.
Since he founded the company, they have sold more than 10 million meals across 55 countries.
Meal Replacement Supplements
The idea of replacing meals with something more convenient has existed for a while, even in sci-fi stories from almost a century ago.
The current trend began in the US with Soylent, that the company produces using algae. In just a few years, Soylent became the most popular meal choice for people in Silicon Valley and elsewhere in the world.
As Soylent was only available to the US, British co-founder of Huel, Julian Hearn, invented the product to expand the idea of meal replacement powders outside America.
Huel now has a pre-made shake for sale with their Huel powder for those who are on-the-go.
Scroll below for one of the best products we’ve seen over the last year.
Huel benefits include:
- 100% Complete Nutrition
- No food waste
- Simple to use
There is no indication that Huel’s ingredients are organic.
Oat bran and whole oats are used to help with some digestive issues. According to the journal Nutrition Reviews, oats “promote satiety [by] helping individuals adhere to diet regimens by controlling hunger and the desire to eat.”
Pea protein is made from yellow and green peas, and it is a suitable protein option for vegetarians, vegans, and those who wish to avoid products like whey, eggs, and meat. According to the journal Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism, “pea components improve glycemic control.”
Flaxseed is a rich source of “healthy” fat, fiber and antioxidants, according to Medical News Today.
Brown Rice Protein
Brown rice protein is from brown rice. Like pea protein, it’s an option for vegans and vegetarians who don’t consume dairy, meat, or egg protein. According to the Nutrition Journal, “rice protein isolate could increase and elicit changes in body composition.”
Medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) are made by processing coconut oil and claimed to help prevent muscle breakdown in some users. According to the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, “MCTs in the diet could potentially induce modest reductions in body weight and composition.”
How Much Does Huel Cost?
- $66 per pouch (two pouch minimum)
- $59.40 per pouch (subscription plan delivered every four weeks)
Huel offers free delivery in the US with orders over $25. If your order is less than $25, there’s a $5 shipping charge.
They ship orders via UPS and arrive within three to five business days unless going to Hawaii or Alaska, which in this case, arrive within five to seven days.
Delivery to Canada is not currently available. It is possible to order outside of the United States from many other countries.
On Amazon, you can buy two pouches, a scoop, a shaker, and a booklet for $75.
You’ll get a free T-shirt and a shaker bottle with your first order. If you subscribe for automatic delivery, you can get a 10% discount, bringing the cost down to $59.40, or $2.12 per meal. You can schedule delivery frequency according to your needs – anytime between every one to every ten weeks.
Heul Money-Back Guarantee
You can receive a refund on Huel products not opened within 30 days. You cannot exchange or get a refund for open pouches.
If your order arrives with any damage, you can exchange it for the same item by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. You are responsible for shipping costs to return your item.
They only refund shipping costs if the product is defective. They then deduct the cost of the return shipping from any applicable refund.
It is best to use insurance and tracking if you’re shipping an item over $75. They will process refunds back through the original form of payment within 30 days after they approve them.
Should You Drink Huel Hot or Cold?
According to the official website, the drink is best cold, even with some ice cubes. However, it is also possible to drink it warm, but it best not to use boiling water, as this could affect the nutritional profile of the drink. To keep it warm, it is better to boil the water and allow it to cool or mix it with cold water before adding in Huel.
What’s the Huel Shelf Life?
The Huel shelf life is:
You can store pouches for up to one year in a dry, cool environment that’s away from direct sunlight, but you should use it before the expiration date on the pouch for best quality.
Once you’ve opened the pouch, it can last for six months. You can reseal it, and as long as you store it in a dry, cool environment, away from direct sunlight, it should be safe to use.
Refrigerated and mixed
The mixture can last for 24 hours. Since some users have stated that the product tastes better cold, you may want to mix it the night before and store it in the fridge and have it for breakfast in the morning.
Unrefrigerated and mixed
This varies depending on the temperature of the environment it’s in. When cool, the mixture will stay fresh for a few hours. If it’s hot, it won’t last long, so drink fast or store it in a vacuum flask to ensure it will stay cold for a longer period.
Huel prioritizes nutrition over flavor. The vanilla flavor is popular for its fresh and wholesome oaty taste with the hint of vanilla. Huel is also available in an unflavored and unsweetened formula that has a more neutral, earthy taste.
There are, however, complaints about the taste feeling too powdery and unpleasant, mainly due to the powdered oats it contains.
Can I Add More Flavor to Huel?
Regardless of which base you choose, you can add flavor easily. Users have recommended either instant or freshly brewed coffee, syrups, fresh or frozen fruit, cocoa powder, and cinnamon.
Syrups like the ones they use at coffee shops are best if you want a variety of flavor options. You can find everything from caramel to mint, and sugar-free varieties are available as well.
Many users say that savory flavors are also an option. Recommendations include cayenne powder for some heat, curry powder for a more complex flavor profile, and even bouillon cubes. Mixing cayenne pepper into the cocoa powder gives you a sweet and spicy mix.
Huel also sells its Flavor Boosts in five flavors: chocolate, strawberry, banana, cappuccino, and chocolate mint. These Flavor Boosts are available for $9 each and come with enough to flavor your drinks about 75 times. This gives you more control over the flavors and their strength, and it prevents you from having to buy full pouches.
Add your flavor choices before mixing the shake for best results.
Huel also offers gluten-free powders and flavors.
Huel Side Effects
Huel contains a few ingredients that may cause side effects like:
- Digestive issues
Where to Buy
Where to Buy Huel
You can buy Huel both on the official website and on Amazon. It has also been sold on eBay.
Some of Huel’s ready-to-drink shakes are available in stores, though not many.
“Huel might be touted as a meal replacement shake, but I didn’t find it did anything to make me feel full or satiated. It tastes absolutely atrocious; the last gulp is always like taking a drink of beach sand. Right around the time I finished my 2nd bag I started a ketogenic diet and Huel is loaded to the gills with carbohydrates (which is probably why I never felt full) so it’s a no-go for me.”
“I love Huel. Been drinking this stuff every morning for a full year. Great taste (tastes like oatmeal) low GI and will keep you full until lunch.”
“Love the product and it works great for curbing my appetite. I would give it more stars if it weren’t for the explosive diarrhea it gives me right after eating something solid. I’ve tried different flavors and even changed my diet and vitamin supplements…. still happens. I’m still using Huel but I do have to plan eating a solid meal and a restroom.”
The Bottom Line on Huel
Here’s the moment of truth: We love that they market Huel as a quick and easy-to-consume meal replacement. It has a crazy amount of healthy ingredients and all the necessary nutrients, carbs, fats, proteins and minerals we need to survive, as well as being low in cost. However, there are reports of some side effects, complaints about the flavor and texture, and the company doesn’t fully refund an open package.
We believe it’s natural lifestyle changes, and support for those changes, that makes the difference between trying to lose weight and losing weight for good. When it comes to losing weight, it’s hard to stick with a plan, unless you have support 24 hours a day.
Among the best weight-loss support apps we’ve found is Noom. We love that Noom has clinical testing that proves it works to help people lose weight and maintain weight once lost. The app supports healthy eating and exercise, while providing human coaching to get you and keep you on the right track.
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