Looking for honesty


Alas the internet isn’t for wimps. Keyboard warriors blah blah.

If you’re scared on posting on a public forum PM me and I’ll send you some advice (free of charge).

This forum is one of the least aggressive ones I know. You should see what they say on Mumsnet.


Like many people have already said, Huel is just another component towards successful dieting. However, I rate it as one of the most important (if not the most important). The reason why is that I am an inveterate snacker, chocoholic and salt-and-vinegar-crisp-aholic, and previous attempts at losing weight were always scuppered whenever I passed a vending machine or shop. Huel is amazing because it has suppressed those desires greatly! It fills me up for hours and seems to reduce the craving. I admit I still get them to an extent but not enough to pull me away from my desk or planned route. Hence my calories have been reduced a lot by not snacking.

I have lost 10kg in 3 months due to a diet of Huel in the week (and eating normally with the family at the weekend), commuting by bicycle, and doing Body Attack and Body Pump at the gym a few times a week (Les Mills - I can highly recommend these too!). Obviously the exercise has played a big part but without Huel I think it would have taken me a lot longer to reduce my weight by the same amount.

And it actually tastes good too!


I’m going to add my (limited) experiences here too. I’m 36 (37 this month), 22 stone and suffer from arthritis - I have tried many diets and always (ALWAYS) fall off the wagon due to missing bread, sweets, basically all the stuff that is really bad for you.

I’ve been following the Huel movement for a while now, and read lots about it, including the fact that it’s not marketed as a dieting aid but a nutritionally balanced food replacement product which to me is as good as being a dieting aid. Having the ability to mix up a meal, with the right amount of nutrients and a consistent calorie count is one of the best tools I think I have in my quest to shed the timber.

I’ve only just started on this journey, I’ve been using Huel for four days, replacing both breakfast and lunch and having a proper evening meal and a snack later in the day if I am still peckish. I thought I would be starving after a day, but I’m not. What hunger I feel I think is psychological - the desire to be eating rather than the need - and I think I’m coping with that incredibly well (even if it is only four days).

I think I must have been pushing 3.5k calories on a bad day and now I am consistently around 2100 a day, I’m drinking more water and taking gentle exercise (well I say “gentle” - I did 20 minutes of up and down the stairs yesterday and my thighs are killing, but I think that’s more the rheumatism than anything).

I am a really fussy eater, and by that I mean I crave salty, sugary and fatty foods normally, and I did not think I would get on with Huel at all. I opted for the berry flavour and I add a handful of frozen fruits (Morrisons “wonky” range at 3 quid for 1KG) and a banana to each shake - which I make with three level scoops of Huel. It tastes really nice to me - I’ve had smoothie with grain drinks that have tasted much worse. I find the drink filling and I have not found myself snacking (or wanting to snack) between “meals” (be it breakfast to lunch on the shakes or lunch to tea when I eat “proper” food).

My biggest nemesis is bread, we go through 3-4 loaves a week - I absolutely love bread, and as I said above, it’s normally the reason I fall off the wagon - but I’ve cut out bread almost altogether (having Huel for breakfast and lunch reduces my bread intake from 4-5 slices to zero) which in itself is normally enough to help me shed 2lbs a week - albeit this time I’m not feeling hungry, grumpy and generally miserable like I normally do.

My first target is 21 stone, and according to MyFitnessPal, my current calorie intake (with some deficit) and exercise will see me do this in five weeks. Longer term I’m hoping to be < 20st prior to Christmas which will be the lightest I’ve been in…well forever.

I’m actually quite optimistic about this attempt at losing weight, as I think Huel is going to be the difference between me reaching my goals and falling off the wagon - there will certainly be challenges along the way but I’m sure there’s enough support here to help with that too.

Sorry for the long post but I’m really happy right now and just wanted to share my experiences so far.


Well done so far and good luck! Just using myfitnesspal and being honest about your intake can make a huge difference, most people are just completely unaware of what they’re eating (myself included before doing this)


Yes it is so easy to underestimate your calorie intake… Fast food is often highly calorific and at same time not particular nourishing. And bread… It is sneaky. A bread roll can be nearly 300 calories. A pitta bread half that. A slice of bread 100…and easy to have 4 or more in sandwiches for lunch or toast at breakfast.


Sorry that you, or anyone else, felt that way. I manage this forum and do my best to monitor and moderate content. I can’t read everything but alas, I did read everything in this thread. Although it’s a more spicy thread than most, I don’t feel anything conflicted with our Rules. There were multiple opinions shared and not everyone agreed with all these opinions - hence the nature of debate, and this was a good debate. If there is anything that offends anyone, or if there is content I have missed that conflicts with our Rules then you just need to flag it and I’ll deal with it as a matter of urgency.

Carry on.



To anyone that’s interested about the calories in, calories out argument, give this a read! :slight_smile:


Question for @IcyElemental and @GTIPuG

Is there any scientific basis to say that if you are more proficient at a particular type of exercise, you’ll burn fewer calories doing it? For example, for some cyclists, riding 15 miles in an hour would be a threshold effort, for others it might be zone 2 pottering about.

I ask this question for two reasons. One because I feel like Garmin Connect always overestimates the calories I burn through exercise; and two, because it might go some way towards explaining Poinsy’s experiences - anyone who needs a new pair of running shoes every five weeks is obviously finding it fairly untaxing to run ten miles.


Yeah, I’m not going to say I have studies or research, I haven’t looked as I’m bloody rammed at work and this is the first chance I’ve had to check my phone…

I’m fairly sure it can be explained by the gains in cardiovascular efficiency acquired during reasonable experience of applicable exercises.

For me, running 10k makes my lungs work reasonably hard to deliver that oxygen into my bloodstream and then same with fuelling the muscles required to move my limbs.

For a seasoned veteran of the same weight, their lungs can work it a little easier and their cells are perhaps more efficient at fuelling the exercise.

I think I’ve read somewhere that the effect can be gauged at around 5% difference between highly trained and non-trained individuals of the same weight.


I don’t have studies either but am inclined to agree. Thinking purely from a physics-based perspective, regardless of how easy you find the exercise, you are still having to move the same amount of mass (assuming you are the same weight) over the same distance, so work done (aka caloric output in this case) should be identical. There’s also the possibility that with experience, you learn better technique for the cardio in question - so for example when running you move your arms in a more optimised fashion to propel you, which would slightly lower the amount of work. But I’m pretty sure that effect would be minimal unless you get to really large distances.


I am happy to meet up for a brew or beer, just for you to test my integrity!

I am far from an expert. My actual findings, as in what I experienced, were as much a surprise to me as they are to you. It is only in the last few years that I have started researching this stuff. The thing is, we only know what we are aware of. We are constantly learning, and, is it possible that we still don’t know everything? Is it possible that there are other variables that we are not aware of?

I cannot answer your question regarding ‘energy sources’ as I am not qualified to do so.

Maybe I had huge energy resources prior to starting this, did anybody ask?


You have been totally respectful. This is clearly a sensitive area. Some people believe they know everything, and maybe they do, according to current understandings, hence my ‘flat earth’ words. These days, there is a tendency to claim to know everything, especially with Google.

I encourage an open mind on human things, whilst still paying respect to the past.

I have had no further private messages, so, hopefully, all good.


As a web-developer for, ahem, years, I know a little about the internet, but I stay away from mumsnet!


No problem Tim. Well, clearly I had a little problem, but, time is a great huealer :wink:

I was possibly being a little sensitive, but, I am a human, not a robot.

Keep up the great work. I am still experimenting with Huel, ginger, turmeric and pepper.


I cannot comment on the scientific stats, although, genes, white/red blood cells play a massive part.

I do know that, as IcyElemental mentioned, your technique also plays a huge part. So, for example, when decide to run 3 times a week, your times gradually get better. Then, after a plateau, they bizarrely do not get better. What tends to happen is that you find a new comfortable running stride. So, you are doing much better times tham previously, but not improving.

I read a book years ago, and, I cannot remember the name of it, but, the author basically said that every single run should hurt as much as the very first run, apart from recovery runs. I followed that, as I knew no other way! Obviously, there is then a plateau based upon your ability, but, very few people reach that.

Garmin Connect is great, but, use it to compare against previous performances; it is not magic.


Or to put it another way - running doesn’t get easier, you just get faster…

I like thinking about it that way as is stops you getting lazy :slight_smile:


Wise move.


If this persons metabolism is compromised because of years of Yo-yo dieting or just coming off a very low calorie diet this would mean their body would not require very many calories before their was a caloric surplus.


Go easy Phil…