Huel creators - for what reason is huel formulated to give 100% nutrition @ 2000kcal (and not fewer) given how its consumed by most its user base?

is it not fair to say that the majority of huel users aren’t 100%, but rather eat huel for breakfast and/or lunch?

if at -say - 1000kcal, huel was formulated to give 100% nutrition save for carbs/protein/fat, then it would allow someone greater freedom/less fuss in what they chose to eat for their non-huel meals, something which feels like it would be in keeping with the ethos of the product

as it is, unless one is 100% huel, one still faces having to spend the time and/or money crafting a well balanced diet for the meal of the day they choose not to consume huel.

were someone to launch the argument that its plain lazy not to want to do that, i’d say that that may well be true, but you could say exactly the same thing about giving yourself a balanced diet in general, with no huel. One of the key selling points of the product as I see it is that it replaces the need to do this. One might argue, well it’s at least replacing the need to do this for 2/3 (say) of the time and that’s better than nothing, and I’d wholeheartedly agree, but it seems a shame to have an otherwise excellent product do 2/3 the job I’d like it to do.

If i’m alone in this then it’s a different matter - the creators of Huel are not designing a product just for me afterall - it’s supposed to be as good as it can be for the maximum number of people possible. And that’s what brings me back to where I started - am I really alone in this? Or am I right in thinking that most people don’t use Huel to replace 100% of their diet, and furthermore that of those people, a majority would rather Huel gave them the complete nutrition* they were looking for whilst still being able to enjoy ‘solid’ food once a day without having the caveat of having to ensure that whatever real food they chose to eat was as well balanced in its nutrient content as the huel itself?

By the way, I’d like to add that I absolutely love huel as a product - I’ve had it pretty much all day every day for a year now - and I greatly respect the creators; i’m just curious on the above!

*I appreciate ‘complete nutrition’ would usually be taken to include full carb/protein/fat intake; i’m using the term in a slightly modified manner basically to mean complete nutrition of all the stuff its difficult to otherwise ensure inclusion of in any given diet/meal without excess consideration. It feels easy to have a loose idea of the carb/protein/fat content of a meal but the other stuff less so. (Appreciate veg (for example) is always a good shout for nutrients but again, aren’t a lot of people choosing huel because they don’t want to necessarily have to consider the inclusion of veg + its requisite preparation at every turn when it comes to eating solid food?)


I think the short answer is - it’s more complicated than it appears. For example vitamin x. If you double the qty to get 100% at 1000cal then you double the ingredient(s) that provide it. Double the fat, protein, carbs, flavours and any other vit/ minerals that come with x.

A similar question I’ve pondered is given how many appear to use less than 2000 calories for weight loss or age reasons, then how does getting less than the rda / huel suggested levels of various nutrients fit with every ones desire to be healthier with huel.


This is actually a great question! And an interesting answer already

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I think what you’re really talking about here is a diet shake, e.g. the kind of thing the Cambridge Diet Plan offers, which is apparently “nutritionally complete” - or something similar, but at 800 calories, not 2000.

The reason Huel doesn’t offer nutritional completeness at a lower calorie intake, at least in my understanding, is that it’s not designed so that you get all of your “goodness” from 500 cals or so of Huel, and then have a free pass to eat rubbish for the rest of your calorie intake - nor is it designed for you to only consume a very small number of calories while still having a “nutritionally complete” diet. It’s designed to replace whatever proportion of meals you want it to, but on the assumption that you’re eating a typical (~2000 kcal daily) weight maintenance diet

And really, if your diet is good in your non-huel meals, there shouldn’t be any need for you to get 100% of your nutritional needs from your Huel meals alone, because your other meals will contain everything else you need. There are other products out there that promise to compensate for the lack of nutrients in the rest of your diet, or to replace it at a very low calorie intake - Huel isn’t really in either category


I think the question has been asked in several different ways over the years, but we’ve never had a definitive answer. I also think it is a good question, and I personally would like to see some of the nutrient values higher; there are many vitamins and minerals that are safe at higher doses, although obviously some are more tricky.

I understand that Huel is designed not to offer nutritional completeness at lower calories levels, but from reading from many of the posters here, many of them don’t always have great diet before Huel anyway and may not necessarily make good food choices fo other meals even now as they believe Huel is providing excellent nutrition. If you are using Huel to calorie count and lower your calorie intake (which many do), then by default you will not be reaching the 100% RDA without further supplementing your diet.

Yes this is my point. If you consume less than 2000 calories of Huel due to other meals or calorie restriction then in theory you need to get the balance of those RDAs from elsewhere.

In the first case if you get sufficient from your other food then you’re good to go - although my instinct says that this isn’t likely to be the norm at all. If peoples diets are already well balanced pre or outside of Huel then that removes one of the reasons often cited for using Huel in the first place.

In the second case then the only solution I can see is some form of supplement.

I’m pretty sure the RDAs, at least in the US, are based on a 2000 kcal diet. So it’s only 100% of your RDA for things at 2000 calories. If you eat fewer calories, your RDAs are lower. If you eat more, your RDAs are higher.

But since they don’t publish RDAs for other caloric intakes, the easiest way to match the published RDAs is to aim for 2000 kcal.

At least, that’s my understanding.

@rtrt The problem is, who do you aim for then? Do you aim the formula at those who eat 10% of their calories as Huel? 25%? 50%?

And if you aim it at people who consume 25% of their calories in Huel, do you aim it at the people who eat a relatively balanced diet for the other 75%? For people who eat nothing but junk food and get ZERO nutrition elsewhere? Somewhere in the middle?

Trying to tailor something like Huel to individuals is difficult because we’re all different. I think Huel should contain 100% RDA for whatever portion of the calories you consume at that time. If you choose to eat 75% of your calories from other sources, you should be responsible for the other 75% of your nutrient intake. Huel isn’t a supplement meant to boost the rest of your diet, Huel is a complete food. If you want it to be complete for you, eat it 100%. If you eat it less, it’s not hurting you, you’re just only getting complete nutrition for the portion you DO eat of Huel… you’re still probably better off (at least most people will be) for that 25% than you were before you had Huel at all.


Sorry, I understood your point… And thought it was a good one… Just added my own thoughts to it

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Huel is nutritionally complete at 2000 kcal. What that means is that your Huel meal, whatever the portion size, is totally balanced and the nutrients included are directly proportional to the amounts recommended by nutritional bodies.

Remember Huel isn’t a supplement, this isn’t about mass loading on nutrients. The nutrients that are above the nutritional requirements are like that because either:

a) The raw ingredients in Huel naturally contain that many - read more here
b) We believe the nutritional recommendations for the specific nutrient are outdated
c) The nutrients/ingredients inhibit uptake of other nutrients - e.g. phytates in oats and the effect it has on iron uptake and the consequent positive reverse effect increased vit C has on it. Read more here and here.

Some thoughts from me, and I want this to remain a discussion. This is by no means the company line (:face_vomiting: at that phrase!)

There will therefore always be people who use Huel as a means to facilitate un-healthy eating habits. Is that a positive thing for us to facilitate? If I eat 100% of my micronutrients and 300g of sugar a day I’ll probably still get a chronic dietary disease. If you have Huel for breakfast and lunch that means you only have 1 meal a day you need to think about being healthy!

There’s an element of this I would think. The majority of the micros needed to be upped would have to come from synthetic sources which might not interest some.

Huel is designed to be used by the general population and not made to be a diet product, but it makes a good one, as many here know, because it basically makes accurate calorie counting easy.

I agree with this comment.

If we went down this route then yes this absolutely would be a problem and essentially no one would ever be happy! It makes sense to aim for the recommendations.

I agree with this comment.

Certainly an interesting subject. We get a lot of requests for alternative Huel products, if we went for all of them we would massively confuse first time customers. We wouldn’t ever say we would never create something like this (or keto, low-carb, super-premium version, high-carb, no micronutrients or any combination of the others we have been asked for) but Huel is a solid product as it is.