OptiFast

Rating
Nestle have launched a range of meal replacement products, including shakes, soups and bars, which are marketed under the name of OptiFast. Together these products make up a very low calorie meal replacement diet that is ‘specially formulated to support your weight loss journey’.

Below we take an in-depth look at the Optifast meal replacement range to see how safe and effective they are at aiding weight loss.

OptiFast Pros

  • Supervised by professionals

OptiFast Cons

  • Expensive
  • Only available through a clinic – not available to everybody
  • Potentially dangerous – a very low calorie diet
Watchdog Rejected Diet Pills

optifast

WATCHDOG TIP: Consider using the consumer #1 rated weight loss product – CLICK HERE

What You Need To Know About OptiFast

OptiFast is a complete meal replacement program that can only be purchased through a clinic, as it is a very low calorie diet (VLCD). Consumers of OptiFast need to be supervised by a medical professional. It is only available for consumers who have a starting BMI of 30 or more, making them obese. ‘Although individual results vary, the typical OPTIFAST patient loses over 50 lbs in 18-24 weeks.’

The Optifast 800 shakes come in two forms, powdered and ready to drink. They come in three flavours, French Vanilla, Chocolate or Strawberry. Each serving of the ready to drink shake contains 140 calories, and each serving of the powdered shake contains 160 calories. The OptiFast Soup comes in creamy chicken flavour, or Garden tomato flavour, and contains 160-170 calories per serving.

The OptiFast 800 bars contain between 160 and 170 calories per serving, and come in three flavours; peanut butter chocolate, berry with yogurt coating and chocolate. The manufacturers state that the bars can satisfy the desire to chew. Feeling unsatisfied and not satiated whilst on a meal replacement program is one huge problem that many people face, and can often be one of the reasons why people fail at this type of diet.

What Are The Side Effects Of OptiFast?

Side effects can include dry mouth, headache, dizziness, fatigue and weakness, cold intolerance, dry skin and nails, menstrual irregularities in women, hair loss, constipation/diarrhoea, irritability and confusion, and more.

How Much Does OptiFast Cost?

Finding the price of any of the Optifast range is very difficult as no prices are mentioned on the website, and the cost varies by city and by clinic.

We have found estimates that a 26 week Optifast program will cost anywhere between $600 and $1000.

Our Verdict On OptiFast

We are not impressed by the Optifast Program or Optifast range at all. The products may be very low in calories, but they are high in sugar and contain no fibre; these two factors are likely to give the consumer energy crashes and hunger cravings, on top of the natural hunger that will come with following an 800 calorie a day diet.

There is seemingly no money-back guarantee for OptiFast, and there is no available information about returns or exchanges. For anyone who does not live near an Optifast Clinic, the need to be supervised by a professional could be time consuming, inconvenient, or could even prohibit them from taking the product.

Overall, we do not recommend OptiFast to our readers.

phentaslim bottle
The most popular consumer choice in 2019 is Phentaslim.

With a combination of proven ingredients, superb customer service and a 60-day money-back guarantee, Phentaslim is making big waves in the diet world.

Find out why thousands of people are choosing Phentaslim to achieve their weight loss goals, and why it's also the editor's top selection.

Read the Watchdog Phentaslim review here.

OptiFast Review

OptiFast is a complete meal replacement program that can only be purchased through a clinic, as it is a very low calorie diet (VLCD). Consumers of OptiFast need to be supervised by a medical professional. It is only available for consumers who have a starting BMI of 30 or more, making them obese. ‘Although individual results vary, the typical OPTIFAST patient loses over 50 lbs in 18-24 weeks.’

The OptiFast range varies slightly between countries, in branding, availability and even the ingredients lists and calorie counts of each product. However, the range essentially consists of shakes, soups and bars.

OptiFast Facts

  • Can only be purchased through a clinic
  • Only available for consumers who have a starting BMI of 30 or more
  • Range of various meal replacement products

The range we are looking at primarily is the Optifast 800 range, which is sold primarily in the USA. The 800 indicates the approximate number of calories the consumer would have per day, if following the most extreme version of the OptiFast diet.In Canada, the Optifast 900 range is offered instead, which has a slightly different recipe to add in a few more calories.

How to Take OptiFast

There are four stages to the Optifast program and your health professional can advise which is the most appropriate phase of the program for your individual weight loss needs:

Intensive Phase 1 – 12 weeks– During this initial phase, Optifast replaces ALL meals and must be taken in combination with 2 cups of low-starch, green vegetables and 2 litres of water per day.

Transition Phase 13 – 18 weeks– One low calorie meal (approximately 300-350 calories) is introduced, in combination with 2 cups of low starch vegetables, 2 serves of fruit, 1 serve of dairy (see Allowed Foods List) and 2 litres of water per day.

Maintenance Phase 19 – 22 weeks– Once this phase is reached, Optifast replaces just ONE meal a day – in combination with two low calorie meal (approximately 300-350 calories each), 2 cups of low starch vegetables, 2 serves of fruit, 1 serve of dairy (see Allowed Foods List) and 2 litres of water per day. Stabilisation Phase 23 WEEKS AND OVER Once weight loss goals have been achieved, you should be at a stage where you no longer require Optifast and you are eating healthy, low calorie meals. However, it is vital to maintain weight loss by ensuring calorie intake is restricted to less than about 1500 calories per day. Your health professional may advise you to use Optifast intermittently if you go above your healthy goal weight.

The Optifast 800 shakes come in two forms, powdered and ready to drink. They come in three flavours, French Vanilla, Chocolate or Strawberry. Each serving of the ready to drink shake contains 140 calories, and each serving of the powdered shake contains 160 calories. The OptiFast Soup comes in creamy chicken flavour, or Garden tomato flavour, and contains 160-170 calories per serving.

OptiFast Concerns:

  • Expensive
  • Only available through a clinic – not available to everybody
  • Potentially dangerous – a very low calorie diet

The OptiFast 800 bars contain between 160 and 170 calories per serving, and come in three flavours; peanut butter chocolate, berry with yogurt coating and chocolate. The manufacturers state that the bars can satisfy the desire to chew. Feeling unsatisfied and not satiated whilst on a meal replacement program is one huge problem that many people face, and can often be one of the reasons why people fail at this type of diet.

What Does OptiFast Claim To Do?

OptiFast could definitely work as a way to lose significant amounts of weight, but ultimately it comes down to the individual. As one reviewer said ‘its not magic, its hard work’. Anyone who has struggled to follow VLCDs before or who has struggled to follow a meal replacement plan will most likely struggle to stick with Optifast as well, especially as this is an extreme total meal replacement program.

We dislike that the products are high in sugars, and low in fibre, as these factors will make following the diet even harder. The absence of fibre will make constipation and digestion related side effects much more likely. A high fibre diet also helps to suppress the appetite by filling the stomach- something that won’t happen with OptiFast at all. The significant levels of sugar in the shakes, bars and even the soups will cause sugar levels to peak fast, with a crash in blood sugar levels and energy levels, following fast. These highs and crashes are one factor that cause sugar cravings, which are essentially the enemy of a dieter.

The low calorie count will cause quick weight loss, if you can stick to the diet, but there are many other options available that deliver similar results in a healthier way.

Does OptiFast Work?

The manufacturers of OptiFast have provided the following description of their OptiFast Program, which is the supervised and regulated use of the meal replacement shakes, soups and bars:

The OPTIFAST Program is a medically supervised weight management program that closely monitors and assesses progress towards better health and emotional well-being. The program, which usually lasts 26 weeks, utilizes a full meal replacement plan that transitions to self-prepared ‘everyday’ meals, in conjunction with comprehensive patient education and support.

How the OPTIFAST Program Succeeds

  • Meal replacement diet
  • Narrowing your food choices helps you work towards weight loss and management by controlling the amount and types of food you eat.
  • Medical supervision
  • Utilizes the expertise of physicians to help you lose weight safely.
  • Lifestyle education
  • To help you achieve and sustain better health through nutrition, exercise, and lifestyle changes.
  • Counseling
  • Individual and group counseling by experts who understand your challenges.
  • Ongoing personalized support
  • Included both during and after weight loss to help you achieve and maintain success.

What Are The Ingredients of OptiFast?

The full ingredients lists for all of the OptiFast 800 range are available on Optifast.com. The manufacturers do not provide individual ingredient quantities, but do list the ingredients in descending order for quantity.

What is incredibly worrying about all of the products in the range is the sheer amount of carbohydrates they contain. The website does not state the amount of sugar present in any of the OptiFast products, but it is typically listed very highly on the ingredients list.

Corn Syrup and High Fructose Corn Syrup are second and third on the ingredients list for the Optifast 800 bars, whilst Fructose is second on the ingredients list for the Shake powder. For the Ready To Drink shakes, sugar is second on the ingredients list after water, with corn syrup solids also featuring on the list.

Amazingly, even the savoury soup options have sugar on the ingredients list.

None of the liquid products in the OptiFast 800 range have any fiber in them at all. This is likely to lead to digestive problems. Fibre also helps the consumer to feel fuller for longer, by regulating digestion and by filling the stomach. The bars do have 4 grams of fibre per bar, which is slightly better than the rest of the range.

Another thing that concerns us is that each serving of each meal replacement item only contains between 10% and 30% of the RDI for vitamins and minerals. The manufacturers do not go into more detail about individual vitamins and minerals on the website, but if consumers are totally replacing their meals with these food replacement products, then ultimately consumers are going to be only getting 30 or 40% of the RDI for some vitamins and minerals. It appears that Optifast is not nutritionally balanced at all.

Ready to Drink Shakes
Calories 160
Protein (g) 14
Carbohydrate (g) 20
Fat (g) 3
Sodium (mg) 220
Potassium (mg) 470
Fiber (g) 0
Vitamins & Minerals 10-30% of RDI
Lactose (g) less than 1

Powder Shakes
Calories 160
Protein (g) 14
Carbohydrate (g) 20
Fat (g) 3
Sodium (mg) 230
Potassium (mg) 470
Fiber (g) 0
Vitamins & Minerals 10-40% of RDI
Lactose (g) 8-12

Bars
Calories 160-170
Protein (g) 14
Carbohydrate (g) 19-21
Fat (g) 3.5-5
Sodium (mg) 140-190
Potassium (mg) 350-360
Fiber (g) 4
Vitamins & Minerals 10-30% of RDI
Lactose (g) less than 1

Soups
Calories 160-170
Protein (g) 14
Carbohydrate (g) 19-20
Total Fat (g) 3-4
Sodium (mg) 600-620
Potassium (mg) 450-700
Fiber (g) 0
Vitamins & Minerals 20-30% of RDI
Lactose (g) less than 1

Does OptiFast Have Any Side Effects?

Any side effects that occur will most likely be due to the low calorie nature of the diet, the lack of fibre, and potentially the change to a liquid diet. The side effects, especially hunger related ones, will be most likely in the first week or two of the program, as the stomach starts to shrink and the body gets used to consuming so few calories.

Side effects can include:

  • Dry mouth
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue and weakness
  • Cold intolerance
  • Dry skin and nails
  • Menstrual irregularities in women
  • Hair loss
  • Constipation/diarrhoea
  • Irritability and confusion
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Muscle breakdown
  • Problems with nerve and muscle function due to an imbalance in minerals and electrolytes
  • Conditions such as osteoporosis, anaemia, gout, gallstones, clinical depression, heart problems, renal failure, and liver disease

Caution:
Warning:
Should only be used under the supervision of a medical professional. Not suitable for pregnant or breastfeeding women. Not suitable for anyone under the age of 18. Not suitable for anyone who is under weight, or anyone who has any health problems that require medication. Consult your doctor if you are unsure about the suitability of this supplement for you. The shake mix is not suitable for anyone who is lactose intolerant. Not suitable for anyone with a history of liver or kidney problems.

Are There Any Customer Reviews For OptiFast?

We were able to locate some customer reviews of Optifast shakes, but it appears that the majority of them are for the Australian formula of the shakes. Customers who have used the Australian formulation note that the product is very sweet, and that painful bloating is a very common side effect. Note that the product is called Optifast VLCD shakes in Australia.

I am going for weight loss surgery. I was told I had to go on an VLCD Optifast diet. So i ordered the chocolate shakes and received them in the mail. I have had such painful bloated stomach and terrible wind and worse diarrhea. I am going to have to find another brand of shake. I cannot leave the house for fear of having an accident. Very disappointed in the product.

Well im like most of the people here. The new formula is too too too too sweet. I could not get myself to drink it, so what i do now is make two shakes from one sachet. nestle go back to the old formula it looks like youre losing a lot of customers!!!

On my surgeons advise, I had to start Optifast VLCD shakes, pre surgery. One of my friends started having them, to support me. My surgeon did not have any of the chocolate left in stock, so I went to Chemist warehouse to purchase them. I was a little in shock over the price (by far the most expensive brand there), but purchased them anyway.The first one was ok – the taste was not too bad (Chocolate), and it is convenient that you mix with water, making easier to use them, when you are out and about. However, by the 3rd day, I had very bad side effects, that left me in the bathroom, for extended periods of time. I spoke to the chemist, and they suggested a change of brands. I then went to give my friend the remaining Optifast shakes I had, and she declined them, also suffering the same side effects I have. My advise – don’t buy in bulk on your first order. Try for a day or 2, to see if you can stomach it. There are other brands, that provide a VLCD meal replacement, which is just as good, without the side effects, for cheaper.

Below are some reviews that appear to be from American consumers, on a chat forum. They note that they are told to expect side effects when initially taking the supplement:

I have been doing optifast for 5 days now. I’m still experiencing most of the common symptoms that they say we can have starting out. My weight is down which is great but I’m not feeling so well most of the time. And today I’m really struggling with not cheating or reaching for even 1 bite of anything not in my optifast food. I’m doing the program with kaiser so I’m in this for another 15 weeks ! Feeling like I don’t know how I’ll survive only this food for so long. Any words of wisdom?!

Last year I stayed in the Intensive phase for 20 weeks (under doctor guidance). I started at 147kg (323lbs) and finished at 102kg (224lbs). I put on a bit of what I’d lost – partly due to a course of steroids to treat my arthritis and got back up to 110kg (242lbs). I’m on day 4 now and I’m at 107kg (235lbs). I adore Optifast, it works for me. I don’t even necessarily use it just to lose weight. Twice over the last year I went on the Intensive Phase for 1-2 weeks just to reset my hunger signals if they were getting out of control and it works beautifully for that as well. Definitely not for everyone but it worked marvelously for me.

Does OptiFast Offer a Money-Back Guarantee?

There appears to be no money-back guarantee on offer. Optifast do not sell their weight loss range direct from their website, instead sending potential customers to local clinics that stock the products, making them responsible for sales, customer support and returns. The returns policies of these clinics may vary, but we doubt that they offer returns in general.

Where Can I Buy OptiFast?

Finding the price of any of the Optifast range is very difficult. No prices are mentioned on the website, and the manufacturers have added this disclaimer about the pricing of the Optifast range:

The cost of the OPTIFAST program varies by city and by clinic and on the specific program that is right for your weight loss goals and individual medical situation. To get detailed information on the OPTIFAST program, patients attend a free, no-obligation consultation that takes about one hour.

This supplement range and weight loss program are not necessarily covered by health insurance in the USA, although if you have health insurance it is worth seeing whether or not you are covered.

We have found estimates that a 26 week Optifast program will cost anywhere between $600 and $1000.

Image not available at this time

1.6 out of 5
OptiFast
  • Effectiveness
  • Safety
  • Price / Guarantee

#1 Consumer Choice 2019: Phentaslim

Phentaslim is Diet Pills Watchdog Approved

Phentaslim

Thousands of customers have cut the fat with this fast and powerful thermogenic fat burner. Can suppress appetite, boost energy levels and elevate mood without the jitters.

  • Over 100,000 satisfied customers
  • Manufactured in a GMP facility
  • 60-day money-back guarantee
  • FREE shipping and buy 3 get 1 FREE offers!
See our Full Review here

Disclaimer: Our reviews and investigations are based on extensive research from the information publicly available to us and consumers at the time of first publishing the post. Information is based on our personal opinion and whilst we endeavour to ensure information is up-to-date, manufacturers do from time to time change their products and future research may disagree with our findings. If you feel any of the information is inaccurate, please contact us and we will review the information provided.

Have Your Say

Add your comment

We'd love to get your opinion. Please keep it clean and stay on topic, no spamming. Comments are moderated before being made live. Your email address will not be published.
We cannot give advice about medical conditions or prescription drugs. Please direct specific medical questions to your doctor.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Get the conversation started by leaving your comments using the form above.