What are the best meal replacement shakes for IBS sufferers?

drink wholesome makes the best meal replacement shakes for IBS sufferers. They are made with a short list of simple ingredients, making them perfect for people with gastroparesis and other gut issues. If you are looking to boost your protein intake without the extra processing and added junk, you have to come to the right place. Order samples to see if our IBS meal replacements are right for you. 


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drink wholesome makes the best meal replacement shakes for IBS sufferers.

Written by Jack Schrupp & endorsed by Baylee Reller, RDN

What is IBS?

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a chronic gastrointestinal disorder (GI) that affects between 10% to 15% of adults in the United States. Common symptoms, which vary in severity and duration from person to person, include bloating, constipation, diarrhea. The cause of IBS is unknown, but may be related to an overly sensitive gut or immune system. 

IBS can be managed through diet. Most IBS sufferers simply avoid the foods that trigger symptoms, an approach called the low FODMAP diet. FODMAPs – fermentable oligo-, di-, mono-saccharides and polyol – are short-chain carbohydrates common in the American diet. They are found in foods like wheat, milk, and food additives, and are notorious for triggering digestive uncomfortable GI symptoms. A low FODMAP diet simply restricts high FODMAP foods. 

How do I know if a food is low FODMAP? 

Reading food labels for low FODMAP eating is tricky. First of all, it is impossible to guess the FODMAP content of a food, especially if it is a processed food. It is therefore a good idea to familiarize yourself with high FODMAP foods, and to avoid them whenever possible. As a rule of thumb, if you do not recognize it, and cannot figure out what it is, do not eat it.

Some ingredients may not be on any approved low-FODMAP lists, but this does not necessarily mean that they are safe to eat. Do your research, and if you cannot find the answer, play it safe and eat something else. Also note that the exact quantity of each ingredient is usually not disclosed on an ingredient list. Ingredients are listed in order of descending weight, however, so if a high FODMAP ingredient is listed last, the actual amount might be so small that you can tolerate it.


Are meal replacements good for IBS?

IBS patients may experience such extreme stomach pain that they may not eat as much as they normally would. This can lead to weight loss. Moreover, when you have IBS, you may avoid certain foods that are healthy because they aggravate your symptoms. As a result, you can miss out on essential nutrients, which can lead to malnutrition. This is where a meal replacement can help; adding a meal replacement to your diet can ensure that you are getting enough calories and protein. That said, not all meal replacements are safe for people with IBS. 

What are the best IBS-friendly meal replacement shakes?

Some meal replacements are low FODMAP, others are not, and the only way to tell is to read the ingredients. Common high FODMAP meal replacement ingredients include whey and casein, inulin, natural flavors, and sugar polyols like xylitol. Just because your meal replacement does not contain any of these high FODMAP ingredients does not mean that it is good for your gut, however. Many meal replacements are made with seemingly-safe ingredients that are bad news for people with IBS and sensitive stomachs.

Although avoiding high FODMAP ingredients is important, the real secret to finding an IBS-friendly meal replacement shake is to stick to real foods. The more the ingredients in your meal replacement look like real, natural foods, the better. Our customers have found the most success worrying less about FODMAPs, and more about processing. Keep reading to learn more.


Why drink wholesome

drink wholesome is additive-free.

One of the reasons why we make the best meal replacement shakes for IBS sufferers is that we do not use food additives. Contrarily, many other meal replacements are riddled with additives. Even when present in small amounts, and FODMAPs aside, these added ingredients can give rise to undesirable painful (GI) side effects, particularly for individuals with IBS. Common symptoms include bloating, constipation, diarrhea, flatulence, and stomach pain. 

To put it simply, food additives look nothing like real food and are hard to digest. They therefore spend extra time in your gut, which can cause your colon to absorb extra water, leading to diarrhea. Lingering food additives can also feed you gut bacteria, which produce as they eat. Extra gas can cause bloating, flatulence, stomach pain, and even instances of constipation.

Here is a list of the most common food additives in meal replacement powder:

acacia gum, acesulfame potassium, artificial flavors, aspartame, carrageenan, cellulose gum, dextrin, dextrose, erythritol, gellan gum, guar gum, gum arabic, inulin, locust bean gum, “natural” flavors, maltodextrin, rice syrup solids, soy lecithin, silica, sucralose, sunflower lecithin, xanthan gum, xylitol

The real reason to be concerned about food additives is their long term effects. Consistently consuming additives can interfere with regulatory pathways in your intestines, increasing the likelihood of developing inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and other systemic inflammatory disorders. Additionally, regularly eating food additives, especially artificial sweeteners, can disturb the delicate balance bacteria in your gut, impacting your ability to digest and absorb food. An unbalanced gut microbiome is also a key driver of inflammation.

the alternative:


drink wholesome is dairy-free.

Another reason why we make the best IBS meal replacement shakes is that we do not use dairy-based proteins. Many other meal replacements, on the contrary, use whey and/or casein protein, which are byproducts of making cheese and yogurt. These proteins tend to cause digestive distress for one-third of people with IBS as they lack the enzymes needed to break down lactose, the sugar in dairy. As you now know, partially digested food can cause painful side effects.

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drink wholesome is made with real foods.

A final reason why we make the best meal replacement for IBS is that we do not use protein concentrates or isolates. The vast majority of meal replacements use one or both of these protein sources, which are basically foods stripped of everything but the protein. Making protein concentrates and isolates requires significant mechanical and chemical modifications. On occasion, chemical agents such as hexane are employed to extract the protein. Consequently, your meal replacement shake barely resembles real food.

Your digestive system is naturally designed to process unprocessed or minimally processed foods, not protein concentrates and isolates. It follows that recent research suggests refined ingredients like these can disrupt your gut microbiome. An unhealthy gut microbiome is the last thing you want if you have IBS.

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Instead of protein concentrates or isolates, we make the best meal replacement shakes for IBS sufferers with whole foods like egg whites and almonds. Egg whites are simply pasteurized and dried, and almonds are roasted, pressed (to remove some oil), and ground. These minimally-processed ingredients are easy to digest and support your gut health.

Unlike protein isolates and concentrates, real foods come naturally equipped with enzymes and digestive aids that assist the digestion process. Egg whites are also low fiber, low FODMAP, naturally alkaline (they maintain healthy pH levels in your gut), and known to promote the growth of good gut bacteria.

Almonds, on the other hand, have prebiotic effects, meaning they foster the diversity and composition of the gut microbiome. They also promote healthy and regular bowel movements. In conclusion, by using minimally-processed, real food ingredients, we have succeeded in making a gut-friendly meal replacement


no stomach issues

“I have been using Drink Wholesome protein for a while now. I was recently diagnosed with IBS and had a hard time finding protein that would work for my gut. Finding Drink Wholesome allowed me to continue to compete as a runner at a high level without the added gut discomfort.” – Madelyn

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chocolate meal replacement powder

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This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. drink wholesome is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.


Living with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) can be a daily struggle, with unpredictable symptoms like abdominal pain, bloating, and irregular bowel movements. Meal replacement shakes for IBS sufferers have gained popularity as a way to manage this condition effectively. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the benefits of meal replacement shakes, with a particular focus on two key ingredients: egg white protein and almond protein.

Understanding Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

IBS is a common gastrointestinal disorder that affects the large intestine. It is characterized by a range of symptoms, including abdominal pain, cramping, bloating, gas, and diarrhea or constipation. These symptoms can be uncomfortable and disruptive to daily life, making it essential for individuals with IBS to find dietary solutions that ease their discomfort.

The Role of Meal Replacement Shakes for IBS Sufferers

Meal replacement shakes offer several advantages for individuals with IBS:

  1. Digestive Ease: These shakes are typically in liquid form, which can be easier on the digestive system than solid foods. This reduces the risk of triggering IBS symptoms, such as bloating and abdominal pain.
  2. Nutrient Density: High-quality meal replacement shakes are designed to be nutritionally balanced, providing essential vitamins, minerals, protein, and carbohydrates in a compact form. This ensures that individuals with IBS receive the necessary nutrients without overloading their digestive system.
  3. Portion Control: IBS may require individuals to consume smaller, more frequent meals to manage symptoms. Meal replacement shakes come in convenient, pre-portioned servings, making it easier to regulate calorie intake.
  4. Consistency: The uniform texture of meal replacement shakes reduces the likelihood of irritating the digestive tract or causing changes in bowel habits.
  5. Customization: These shakes can be customized to meet individual dietary needs and preferences, allowing for variations in flavor and nutrition.

Benefits of Egg White Protein

Egg white protein is a valuable ingredient in meal replacement shakes for individuals with IBS. Here are some of the key benefits:

  1. High Biological Value: Egg white protein is renowned for its high biological value, meaning it contains all essential amino acids in optimal proportions. This makes it an excellent source of complete protein, essential for muscle maintenance and overall health.
  2. Low Fat Content: Egg white protein is virtually fat-free, making it suitable for individuals with IBS who may have difficulty digesting high-fat foods.
  3. Low Residue: Residue refers to undigested food particles left in the digestive tract, which can worsen IBS symptoms. Egg white protein leaves minimal residue, reducing the risk of digestive discomfort.
  4. Versatility: Egg white protein can be easily incorporated into various meal replacement shake recipes, allowing for flexibility in flavor and nutrition. It pairs well with fruits, vegetables, and other ingredients.

Benefits of Almond Protein

Almond protein is another excellent choice for IBS-friendly meal replacement shakes, offering unique advantages:

  1. Rich in Fiber: Almond protein is naturally high in dietary fiber, which can support digestive health by promoting regular bowel movements. This can be especially beneficial for individuals with IBS who often experience constipation or irregular bowel habits.
  2. Healthy Fats: Almonds are a good source of heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, providing a steady source of energy without overwhelming the digestive system.
  3. Nutrient-Rich: Almonds are packed with essential vitamins and minerals, including vitamin E, magnesium, and calcium, which add nutritional value to your meal replacement shake.
  4. Flavor Enhancement: Almond protein adds a pleasant nutty flavor to your shake, enhancing taste while being gentle on the digestive system.

Customizing Your IBS-Friendly Meal Replacement Shake

Creating a meal replacement shake tailored to your specific dietary needs and preferences can be both enjoyable and supportive of your health. Here are some tips for customizing your shake:

Protein Source: Choose either egg white protein or almond protein based on your preferences and tolerance.

Liquid Base: Select a liquid base that works best for your stomach, whether it’s lactose-free milk, almond milk, or another non-dairy option.

Flavorings: Add natural flavorings like honey, vanilla extract, or spices like cinnamon or nutmeg to enhance the taste without overwhelming your digestive tract.

Fresh Ingredients: Experiment with adding small amounts of fresh fruits or vegetables, such as bananas or spinach, to boost nutrition and flavor.

Fiber Boost: If you’re prone to constipation or irregular bowel movements, consider adding soluble fiber sources like chia seeds or ground flaxseeds to your shake to promote regularity.

Consultation with Healthcare Professionals

Before making significant changes to your diet, especially if you have a medical condition like IBS, it’s essential to consult with healthcare providers or registered dietitians. They can offer personalized recommendations based on your specific needs, medical history, and any dietary restrictions you may have.

In conclusion, meal replacement shakes can be a valuable addition to your dietary strategy for managing IBS. By choosing high-quality meal replacement shakes and incorporating egg white protein or almond protein, you can provide your body with essential nutrients while being mindful of your digestive health. Experiment with various ingredients and flavors to find the combination that works best for you, and consult with healthcare professionals to ensure that your dietary choices align with your unique health requirements.