Meal Supplement and Meal Replacement

What is the difference between a meal supplement and a meal replacement?

Meal supplements provide calories and protein but may lack other essential nutrients. As such, they cannot be used as the only source to obtain nutrients. On the other hand, meal replacements contain all the essential nutrients needed by the body. Thus, a meal replacement can replace a well-balanced meal because it provides all the necessary nutrients.

However, nutritional support products should not replace food intake for people who can eat. Instead, these products should be given to fulfill nutrient requirements when food sources are inadequate due to special dietary needs or restrictions.

People with special dietary needs or restrictions are at risk of developing malnutrition. Nonetheless, they can still stay strong by eating a well-balanced diet. In case food intake cannot meet all their nutrient requirements, nutritional support is recommended. However, this should be done with the guidance of health practitioners who recognize the value of nutritional support for people at risk of developing malnutrition.

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