My 1 year (ish) on Huel:
- Amazing for me, big increases to health, no more “hunger lulls” after lunch, stable weight loss of over 10kg, money saver and most importantly, very convenient (see detail for tips).
I (mid 30s, 100kg, normal height), started Huel as soon as I came back from my Xmas holiday last year.
My priorities were (in order):
- Eat healthier at work/avoid snacks
- Become more healthy generally
- Increase convenience (allowing me to eat breakfast(
- Save money
- Possible weight loss
I chose to use Huel only for breakfast and lunch on work days, eating in an uncontrolled fashion at all other times (takeaways, snacking, ice cream etc = fine outside of those times).
The rational being it would still have a net result of me eating healthier + not make me feel like I was on a diet (sustainable) + mean I’d eat breakfast (I tend not to have time to make a healthy breakfast).
I selected a meal/portion size of 2 level huel scoops.
After a lot of trial and error, I use the unsweetened/unflavoured version with strawberry flavouring added.
It was a complete success for me, I’ve become noticeably healthier and more energetic, lost over 10kg (stable i.e. not a fluctuation due to water loss), and expect Huel to be a long term feature of my life now.
I thought it might be useful to give a couple of thoughts/tips for new people.
Please keep in mind this is just my opinion/a sample size of 1! It may not be true for you!:
Possibly my main tip: I recommended Huel to around 10 people over the year. In every situation, the people who ended up loving it/sticking with it long term (4) found benefit from it in the first day.
The people who didn’t like the texture, had stomach issues etc etc never magically started liking it.
It’s a shame, but if you start using it and within 3 days you’re having issues/not liking it, I suspect unfortunately you never will.
The first day I liked the texture, didn’t mind the flavour (!) and was amazed at the energy rush/lack of a post lunch energy slump.
- Recommendation: start with the small sample bags first and only proceed to bigger bags if you really like it.
- I’d also suggest getting a flavouring sample pack at the same time (my personal favourite is strawberry)
I prefer the unsweetened/unflavoured version as you can then add all kinds of different flavours to it to stop it becoming boring. The flavour of the vanilla one can become very boring after a while.
If you do choose the vanilla one and find it oddly artificial/sweet, if you leave it for a few minutes after mixing, the sweetener dissolves better = it becomes much more mellow.
For me convenience is key and possibly the biggest benefit of Huel. When it’s so easy to make a meal, you use Huel instead of snacking/crisps etc.
I’d strongly suggest maximising it’s convenience for you as soon as you start to benefit fully from this aspect of Huel (see photo at bottom of my setup)
My process is:
- When I get a new bag of Huel, I add the flavouring directly to the bag and shake it = avoids needing to add it to each portion.
- Each fortnight, I distribute 2 weeks worth of portions into 20 small glass jars and seal the tops.
- This means on a work morning, I simply fill my beaker with water, empty a jar into it, shake it, pop another jar in my bag and leave = whole process of making breakfast and packing lunch takes 10 seconds!
If (like me), you only have a meal portion of 2scoops/350ish mil water, get a smaller beaker = saves a lot of bag space.
I found myprotein’s “shaker bottle mini” worked perfectly for me and was only a pound or so.
When shaking, always add the water first and make sure you shake as soon as possible after adding the powder.
This reduces “clumping”.
I’ve never bothered using a mixer and if there are occasional lumps you get used to them.
Weight loss. As an experiment I tracked my weight/fat/water composition over the year even though weight loss wasn’t my main driver.
Interestingly, I experienced an immediate large weight drop (i.e. first 2 weeks).
It then stayed static for around 30 days…
I went on holiday for a week (no Huel, very active but eating a fair bit) and gained almost all my weight back
Huel brought it down again and then it again stayed static for almost 5 months.
It then started slowly lowering in a very predictable fashion.
When I went on holiday again and returned interestingly it hadn’t changed.
I lost almost all of the 10+kg loss after 6 months on it.
I’m not quite sure what was going on, but I suspect the initial loss was water loss (even though my machine didn’t pick this up/not sure how accurate they are), where as real body type changes took a lot longer. 6+ months my body shape changed very obviously going down a shirt and trouser size.
I guess it’s worth keeping this in mind. For me, it took a while for real physiological changes (and associated weight loss) to happen.
Hope some of this helps someone.
I’m ashamed to say it’s not a major driver, but if I fold down a Huel bag and put it alongside the landfill waste I would generate from the equivalent work lunches, it’s also majorly majorly cut down the amount of post-consumer waste I generate.