What is the best SIBO meal replacement shake?
Written by Jack Schrupp and reviewed by Ella McGonagle, M.S. Nutrition
drink wholesome makes the best SIBO meal replacement shake. It is additive-free, dairy-free, and made with real foods, not protein isolates – 99% of meal replacements fail to meet at least one of these criteria. This makes it perfect for people with gut issues and sensitive stomachs, as well as for people just looking for nutrition without the processing and added junk. If you suffer from SIBO, or any other digestive disease, order samples to see if our SIBO meal replacement powder is right for you.
“I have a sensitive stomach, so most meal replacement powders leave me with gas, bloating, constipation, and stomach pain, but not this one.” – Shon
drink wholesome is the best SIBO meal replacement shake.
What is SIBO?
Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) occurs when there is an overgrowth of bacteria in the small intestine, particularly of types of bacteria that normally grow in other parts of the gut. This overgrowth can cause stomach pain and diarrhea, and can lead to malnutrition and weight loss in severe cases. Although SIBO remains a poorly understood disease, it is associated with several chronic conditions including irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), Crohn’s disease, and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). It can also be a complication of abdominal surgery.
The goals of SIBO treatment are threefold: 1) correct the underlying cause; 2) provide nutritional support, if necessary; and 3) treat the overgrowth. The most common treatment for SIBO is antibiotics, which can help decrease the number of bacteria in the small intestine. Antibiotics will not address the underlying issue that caused SIBO in the first place, however, which is why they are often paired with changes to diet.
What is the SIBO diet?
The SIBO diet is a temporary elimination diet. The goal is to eliminate certain carbohydrates, specifically low-FODMAP foods, and starve gut bacteria (bacteria eat carbohydrates). FODMAPs are short-chain carbohydrates that are hard to digest for certain people. The SIBO diet is also used to help people determine which foods cause and reduce symptoms.
Are meal replacements good for SIBO?
Meal replacement shakes can be a great addition to the SIBO-diet, but most meal replacements are unfortunately NOT good for SIBO. First of all, many meal replacements contain high FODMAP ingredients like inulin, natural flavors, and sugar alcohols like xylitol. Moreover, most meal replacements contain emulsifiers, thickeners, fake sweeteners, fake flavors, and other added ingredients that can feed your hungry gut bacteria.
What is the best SIBO meal replacement shake?
The best SIBO meal replacement shake should be free from high FODMAP ingredients like inulin, natural flavors, and sugar polyols like xylitol. It should also be made with a short list of simple ingredients. The fewer the ingredients, and the more the ingredients look like real foods, the easier your meal replacement will be to digest. Keep reading to learn why this is important.
Why drink wholesome?
drink wholesome is additive-free.
One of the reasons why we make the best SIBO meal replacements is that we do not use food additives. Food additives are a common ingredient in most meal replacements, and can cause painful side effects, even when used in small amounts.
Basically, because food additives do not resemble real foods, they are hard to break down. They therefore spend extra time in the gut, feeding your gut bacteria. This allows certain types of bacteria to thrive and proliferate. It also causes gastrointestinal (GI side effects.
Partially digested food sitting in your gut can cause your colon to absorb extra water, leading to diarrhea. It also produces extra gas (gut bacteria release gas as they eat), which can cause bloating, flatulence, stomach pain, and even 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
Consistently consuming additives can interfere with regulatory pathways in your intestines, increasing the probability that you develop inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and other chronic inflammatory disorders. Food additives, namely artificial sweeteners, can also disturb your gut microbiome, which research shows can cause widespread inflammation in the body and lead to a number of chronic diseases.
SOY PROTEIN ISOLATE, CANOLA OIL, MALTODEXTRIN, ISOMALTULOSE, SOLUBLE CORN FIBER, MODIFIED FOOD STARCH, VITAMIN AND MINERAL PREMIX, CELLULOSE, NATURAL & ARTIFICIAL FLAVORS, SOY LECITHIN, SALT, MONO & DIGLYCERIDE, XANTHAN GUM, SUCRALOSE
drink wholesome is dairy-free.
Another reason why we make the best SIBO meal replacements is that we do not use dairy-based proteins. Many other meal replacements contain whey and/casein protein, which are byproducts of cheese and yogurt manufacturing. These dairy-based proteins frequently cause digestive issues, especially for the millions of people with lactose intolerance (which may be a complication of SIBO). People with lactose intolerance lack the enzymes needed to break down lactose, the sugar in dairy. As you just learned, food that is not fully broken down can lead to painful side gastrointestinal (GI) effects.
drink wholesome is made with real foods.
A final reason why we make the best SIBO meal replacements is that we do not use protein concentrates or isolates. Practically all other meal replacements rely on either one or both of these protein sources, which have been stripped down to only their protein content. They appear on the list of ingredients as “pea protein” or “whey protein,” rather than as “peas” or “whey.”
The process of making protein concentrates and isolates substantial mechanical and chemical modifications. Chemicals like hexane are often introduced to extract the protein. As a result, the shake you drink bears only a faint resemblance to real food.
Your digestive system is adept at digesting unprocessed or minimally-processed real foods, rather than artificial or refined ingredients. Consuming anything apart from real foods can give rise to complications, particularly for those with pre-existing gastrointestinal conditions like SIBO. Although the long-term implications of consuming processed ingredients like protein isolates are not entirely understood, emerging research suggests they can disrupt the gut microbiome, which shields you against pathogens, contributes to educating your immune system, and influences various physiological processes.
Instead of using protein concentrates or isolates, we make the best SIBO meal replacements with whole foods like egg whites and almonds. The main source of protein is egg whites, which are very low FODMAP. The secondary source of protein is almonds, which do contain FODAMPs. That said, we keep the serving size at 10 almonds or less, which is permitted on the low-FODMAP diet.
Unlike protein concentrates and isolates, real food ingredients like egg whites and almonds contain enzymes and natural digestive aids. Our happy customers have therefore reported fewer digestive issues with our meal replacement powders than with any other type of meal replacement.
“I had a bad c. diff infection a while back and have been dealing with SIBO on and off since. During a flare-up I can’t tolerate many foods and even rice sometimes gives extreme bloating. I just need something I can eat that won’t cause symptoms. This does the trick. I just mix it with water.” – Ollie
drink wholesome is the best meal replacement drink for SIBO.