SlimFast, Ensure & Glucerna
Fail To Meet Glycemic Standards
in Diabetics

The American Diabetes Association (ADA) has reported that the nutritional supplement drinks SlimFast Shake, Ensure with Fiber, and Glucerna Weight Loss Shake, do not meet the standards for appropriate glycemic control in diabetics.

In the journal Diabetes, June 6, 2008, the ADA published a study (1) showing that the most commonly used meal replacement and nutritional supplement drinks do not have “favorable glycemic profiles” in type 2 diabetics.

This came as a surprise to physicians who recommend the shakes to their diabetic and obese patients. Since the published trials reveal that the three leading supplement drinks are sub-standard, in terms of glycemic control, diabetics, obese individuals, and those seeking weight control, will need to re-evaluate their choices in the selection of drink supplements.

In the trial, subjects ingested equal amounts of carbohydrates from each of the three drinks. Blood glucose (BG) was examined at 0, 15, 30, 60, 90, 120, 150, and 180 minutes. There was a significant difference among the three supplements in the change in BG over time. The SlimFast and Ensure drinks caused patients to exceed the ADA’s recommended limit of 180 mg/dl (SlimFast 39%)(Ensure 39%). Glucerna elicited a lower glycemic response than SlimFast and Ensure, but according to the researchers, Glucerna “Is still not an ideal meal replacement for all people with type 2 diabetes.”

Despite the presence of more fiber in the Ensure, the product did not reflect acceptable ADA guidelines for glycemic control.


This data is not good news for the average person seeking weight control. In non-diabetics and dieters, meal replacement and supplement drinks that imbalance blood glucose levels cause adipose tissue fat-storage via Lipoprotein Lipase (LPL).

(1) Diabetes, 68th Scientific Sessions, June 6, 2008, Journal of the American Diabetes Association, Glycemic Responses to Nutritional Supplements in Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus, Jain et al;1696-P

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