1 week in with HUEL as a paramedic

Hello all, I decided to try HUEL after coming across a facebook ad and after nearly a week in I can say, with a little confidence (I have to see how it goes after a few months), its working wonders!

I work 12 hours shifts, which usually end up being 13 hours, they have no particular pattern. One mealbreak during the shift which has no routine either (you get it 4-7 hours into the shift). Such is life for a Paramedic, love the job but it does not do any wonders for regular or healthy meals.

Before I would always have cereal bars, some fruit (if I can find any fresh in the small 24hr shop on the way home) and also the bad old vending machine for chocolate and sugary drinks in the hospital to keep me going during the shift. There was many a time I would be driving home feeling too tired to cook and stop off at a takeaway to get some ‘proper’ food before hitting the hay. In short, bad eating habits.

I tried many a time to get into a better routine and prepare meals, but all it takes is a run of maybe 2-3 really long shifts to make that go all out of the window. I usually end up stopping at the same small 24hr shop and buying the expensive lil smoothies, stocking up in snacks and a meal for lunch. This was costing me about £15 a day and then on top of that the takeaways!

I could never find a simple, cost-effective and healthy plan. Personally I wasn’t concerned about ethical foodstuffs, being intolerant to certain things etc. I just needed something that required little thinking and could easily be set in place. I bought a 2 weeks supply and with little else than following the instructions on the pack (3 scoops into 570ml water) I went into having cereal in the morning, getting a sandwich, making up a bottle of HUEL and bringing enough powder for another full bottle with me to work. Then out the door I go! I don’t stop at the shop anymore, I don’t grab the chocolate and sugary drinks out of the vending machine and I don’t feel so hungry and tired to the point of stopping for a takeaway!

The good points of HUEL that I have noticed is hunger pangs during the shift are gone (I drink the stuff about 100ml at a time between jobs), I have noticed feeling more alert even at this early stage! A few things for anyone starting out to be aware of though, it will be rough on your bowels a bit until the lil buddies in your gut get used to it. A slight increase in flatulence and type 5 on the good old stool chart will be normal. I have also noticed a need to still be drinking some water on top, this can be due to my job, the loose stools containing more water than usual or a diuretic quality to HUEL. It is too early to tell what the culprit is but urine is darker than usual unless I actively rehydrate.

Overall, I have high hopes for HUEL and will be glad if it helps me have some form of healthy eating regimen. I will never be able to simply calculate my daily calorie requirement or eat at any regularity, the nature of working on an ambulance means that will always be a luxury out of my grasp. HUEL so far is letting me simply chug away and giving me some assurance of making the most of what I got!

If HUEL after 2months (I’m going to give the stuff this long with me as a guinea pig) does what I hope I will be shouting from the rooftops to my colleagues about it!

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@Daniel_Magill very interesting write up, thank you.

Yes you do need to drink some extra liquid.

Paramedics do a vital jobs so it’s nice to hear that Huel can help out.

Good luck, keeps us updated on progress and welcome to the Huel family.

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Thanks @Julian I can only really write up why I’m trying Huel for now, but it does look promising!

I was wondering if taking good quality probiotic supplements for the first few weeks would help peoples’ guts acclimatise better on what, for some, could be a radicial change in diet? Or just taking it easy with 50/50 Huel for the first month just the better option? You the producers and I’m sure others with nutrition background could give really good tips :slightly_smiling:.

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Hi @Daniel_Magill

Welcome to Huel. Pleased to hear positive feedback so far.

You should be ok without the probiotic, but if you feel you’d like one, there’s no harm.

I would ease into a 100% Huel diet though, increase by a meal every 2-3 days.

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@Daniel_Magill Welcome to Huel!

I would just like to say, I have maximum respect for anyone who works in the emergency services, especially paramedics. I have read a couple of books written by paramedics about their experiences, and it’s extraordinary the stuff you people deal with every day. I have to say, I certainly couldn’t do it.

Also, from a bit of personal experience, the two times they were called out to my dad having a heart attack, they were amazing. Also, the time I witnessed an old lady crash her car, and the paramedic who came out to her, he was great.

Keep doing the wonderful work that you do.

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Whoa, 13 hour shifts. That’s a long day. I hope the HUEL works out for you.

Also, if you can get hold of a blender-bottle, they are well worth it. I seem to find that blending it, rather than just shaking, makes it easier to absorb.

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Good luck Daniel, another emergency services worker here trying this out :slight_smile:

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Thanks for the compliment @Marcus, I tried working in an office once. After 3 days I knew it wasnt for me heh.

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2 weeks in now and I can say it’s working wonders. I can keep my energy up during work with no problem, I take enough powder to make up 2 shakes with me to work. Even during meal time I don’t feel starving and just take a light snack for the sake of it now.

Here is a quick list of things I have found;

My indigestion has settled down big time, I used to chew rennie like sweets!

I have the odd day where I have a drastically increased urine output, this could be linked to my body using up fat stores that arent needed now. I’ve lost a fair amount of body fat without even trying and I know I’m not showing signs of dehydration, that water must be coming from metabilising bodyfat.

The practical nature of Huel is really making it worthwhile for me. I’m on to my second bag now and will definitely be ordering a months supply.

p.s. I have found the labeling on the Huel shaker bottle isnt holding up to the rigours of work. Half of it has worn off. The bottle itself is holding up well so far though.

I will make sure to give an update 1 month in too, also when I settle into a really good routine using it. The routine might benefit others in similar circumstances as mine.

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Yes, I imagine it being really great to have Huel when doing such an on-the-go job as that. You can just take swigs of it whenever you have a spare minute. I think Huel’s perfect for that kind of situation.

@Daniel_Magill

Massive respect to you doing such an important job. And great to hear Huel is working wonders for you.

I am sort of waiting for you to reply saying Huel saved someone’s life one day but I realise that’s fairly unlikely…

I’m happy for you. Those shifts sound killer.
I work a sedentary office job but the biggest benefit for me is the practicality. Now I blend two bottles at 10pm every night and put them in the fridge to grab in the morning. Much better than what I was doing: spending lots on random unhealthy rubbish every day.

A good PREbiotic is “Flourishe”, an FOS based product sold at naturesbest.co.uk They also do probiotics in capsules that are good too. maybe consider giving both of them a go to help the gut have healthy organisms in it and thus to benefit one of the many aspects of your complex immune defences.

As Huel is primarily made from natural ingredients, and is rich in fibres including beneficial prebiotics which fuel our ‘good’ bacteria that reside in our gut which, in turn, aid digestion.

I definitely tend to find that I get far less gas when I drink Huel. It seems really easy on the digestion.

I definitely teI definitely tend to find that I get far less gas when I drink Huel. It seems really easy on the digestion.nd to find that I get far less gas when I drink Huel. It seems really easy on the digestion.

@Anand_Singh are you okay?

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Fellow paramedic here. How are you getting on with your huelling?

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Shift worker here and I’m on my first day of huel. So far, I haven’t craved coffee or sugar so fingers crossed!

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Huel really does help with the cravings! I would advise you to monitor how you feel in terms of withdrawal symptoms if you are going cold turkey on the caffeine and sugar. We often underestimate the power of caffeine withdrawal, which has ruined many family holidays when the parents get out of the office and take a break from the coffee binge!