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Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
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When I decided I wanted to get back in shape and feel better again, I was hearing good things about P90 and P90X from people I knew. I could see that the program worked for them so I figured I'd give it a shot. I got the package in the mail and then found out about this website, the coaches, and all the support you get. Surprised the heck out of me. I thought I was just getting a dvd. Then I started hearing good things about shakeology here and got interested. I'm pretty careful about what I eat, especially processed foods, so I wanted more info about it to help me decide if I should try it.

I found an awful lot of personal testimonies about how great shakeology was and knew enough about healthy stuff to know that based on the ingredients list there's a lot of good stuff in it. If I was gonna justify the price I felt like I needed more info than I was finding so I started researching each ingredient. I wanted to know all the positives and negatives about each of them. It seemed that it was a good thing but I knew that even the best things aren't always good and aren't good for everyone. I came across a number of reports of people having issues with the product but not seeing many real answers about why they were having issues.

So I'm starting this thread to share what I learned.

First, the good:

There's a lot of positive stuff in shakeology and many of the ingredients have been scientific support around their benefits. A lot more than I expected. If I based my decision solely on what is in shakeology, I'd use it.

There's an awful lot out there about the good of shakeology so this section is shorter than otherwise. I don't need to repeat it. You can hear about it from members, your coaches, and by reading the other threads. Don't let the size of this section make you think it's not that good. The stuff in it is impressive IMO.

The bad:

Well, bad isn't the right word but I like Clint Eastwood movies and thought the name would be fun. This section is more to list in one place the things that might make you want to be cautious about using the product or that might make you want to check with your doctor to help you make an informed decision.

One of the questions about supplements and highly processed foods is how much of the nutrition and affects of the ingredients make it through the processing to the end product. There are two sides to this in relation to shakeology. The first is how much of the benefits of all those ingredients are available in the end product. I included info about the affects of processing on nutritional values on the attachment. I don't know if those values apply specifically to shakeology, but they seem to be a reasonable starting estimate. The second is that the possible negative interactions might have been processed out as well. So keep that in mind as you read this. Just cause an individual ingredient has a potential interaction, the final product may not have the same impact or interaction.

So here is a summary of things I found from the individual ingredients. If you want more detail or want to know which specific ingredient it applies to, check the attachment. Keep in mind that I didn't research the ingredients myself. I am not a scientist. This is info that I gathered from various websites. I tried to limit info to legitimate websites such as hospital or government sites, or that included citations or other things that lent legitimacy to the info they included. The info could be outdated or incorrect. Take it for what it's worth and please research further before you draw any final conclusions.

- Most ingredients have scientific support of their benefits, but there are a few that are questionable
- Camu-camu may not be sustainably grown
- some ingredients may be less effective than less expensive alternatives
- Be careful exceeding recommended dosages. contains compounds that can build in the body and cause serious issues
- Not recommended if nursing or pregnant
- Should not be taken prior to surgery

- possible interaction with Warfarin
- contains lactose, but may be more tolerated by lactose intolerant people due to the processing and formulation
- can affect medications broken down by the liver
- may negatively affect anticoagulants and phenacetin
- may interact with other herbs and supplements to cause nausea, itching, dizziness, stomach upset, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, sore throat, cough, and rash
- may negatively interact with the anticancer drug bortezomib under specific conditions
- may contain caffeine
- may negatively impact those with goiter
- may negatively affect those with celiac disease or with sensitivity to barley
- Not recommended if you have an immune system disease such as multiple sclerosis, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, or another condition known as an autoimmune disease
- May interact with Orlistat (Xenical, Alli)
- might increase the risk of bleeding in people with a clotting disorder
- may negatively impact treatments utilizing protease inhibitors, such as for HIV or AIDS
- may interact with medications in the calcium channel blocker family
- may reduce the effectiveness of tamoxifen
- May negatively interact with anticoagulants such as ibuprofen, aspirin, or warfarin.
- Not recommended for people who are taking certain types of antidepressants (monoamine oxidase inhibitors and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors)
- May produce negative symptoms for those with intestinal damage, a weakened immune system, or overgrowth of intestinal bacteria.
- May impact effectiveness of diabetes medications

The ugly:

Well, maybe the price but I can't say that shakeology is overpriced because I haven't researched what it would cost to buy all the ingredients separately. That might be my next research project lol.

I can't say there's anything really ugly about shakeology. If you believe that supplements have value, the shakeology seems to be something that should provide a lot of benefits for a lot of people but that isn't for everyone. Some people won't get benefits or could experience negative side affects. Anything with the number of ingredients in shakeology is likely to have negative interactions with some things.

If you have info that improves the info I found, I hope you will post it.
Attachments: shakeology ingredients analysis.xlsx (57.2k)
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RE: Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
2/23/12 9:49 PM as a reply to mocarski.
Wow. Thank you for posting this. I feel it's always important to know what you are consuming and how ingredients interact with medications and physical issues. Not all foods and ingredients work for all people.

Seriously, thank you for posting this.
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RE: Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
2/23/12 9:58 PM as a reply to SJFit.
I need to amend the caffeine item. That came from the green tea ingredient but I came across info that indicated they removed the caffeine. Forgot to add that to my spreadsheet before I posted.
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RE: Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
2/24/12 12:17 PM as a reply to mocarski.
one other note on my findings. I did not research all of the ingredients in every flavor. I took the list from the chocolate flavor and tried to spend the time on the items that seemed to be in the other flavors. If you have concerns or questions about the specific flavor you are considering, I would highly recommend researching the specific ingredients in that flavor that I did not cover.

I spent quite a bit of time getting this far. I'm not a coach or employee of BB and I didn't receive any compensation for this. I did it for myself. I spent more time than I needed to. I initially wanted just enough info to make myself satisfied about the product. I got sucked in a bit. It was interesting learning about the ingredients, especially a lot of the exotic ones I never heard of before.
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RE: Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
2/29/12 12:35 PM as a reply to mocarski.
There was a coach who went and bought the equivalent of ShakeO - attached a couple images for you.





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RE: Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
2/29/12 5:35 PM as a reply to AshleyW10.
Thanks for the pics. That's awesome and very helpful. I've priced out all the ingredients myself, but I can't do a direct comparison cause I don't know how much of each ingredient is included in a serving of shakeology. Almost all of it is readily available online. I may try buying everything and experimenting to see how long it all lasts. That's about the only way I can see to figure out the actual cost per day.

Of course there is always the question of whether you really need all that stuff...

I'd have a big problem trying to afford the cost of shakeology if I used it regularly cause I'd need to buy for more than just me. It would be a huge part of my total food budget.
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RE: Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
3/12/12 5:09 AM as a reply to mocarski.
I used to be very much anti-supplements, thinking that they weren't worth it cause you were paying a lot for something that didn't have as much nutrient value as real food. I used to believe that if you ate well you didn't need them. As time goes by and I see news stories about what is happening to the food supply and the pollution around us, I've changed my thinking and I believe supplements can be beneficial and that we might even be tipping into the realm that they are needed.

Here's an article about major food companies replacing nutritious ingredients with cellulose, or wood pulp. There are a few benefits of cellulose but in this case nutrition is being sacrificed simply because it is cheaper.

These are brand names that most people use - Kraft, Pepsi, Kellogg, Weight Watchers, McDonald's, General Mills, etc. Very sad, IMO.

http://www.thestreet.com/story/11012915/1/cellulose-wood-pulp-never-tasted-so-good.html
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RE: Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
3/15/12 1:13 PM as a reply to mocarski.
Thank you for your work on this!
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RE: Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
3/24/12 7:23 PM as a reply to JanetDenny.
Well, I decided to see what it would take to get all the ingredients so I ordered almost everything. I did not include the following:

cellulose - because of the article I posted. It has some value as fiber but mentally I feel better without it

hydrilla, msm, schisandra, and xantham gum - my research didn't find any scientific backing to the benefit claims for these

fructose, chocolate, cocoa, vanilla, cinnamon - for flavoring mostly and wanted to see what it tasted like with the nutritional ingredients

It was easy enough to find everything and order it but it wasn't easy figuring out how much of everything to include. What I discovered is that there's no way I can be sure I'm matching the amounts in shakeology since the recipe isn't disclosed, but I'm confident I can get in the ballpark based on the info on the shakeology label.

The taste is better than an average protein shake but I wouldn't say it was the best thing I've ever tasted either. It is sweet and fruity from the spirulina and fruit ingredients and looks like greenberry Shakeology from the grasses and blue-green algae. I've tried shakeology and it tastes about what I'd expect if I were to compare it without the flavoring ingredients. It is very thick like Shakeology. I'm comparing the same amount of my custom shake to a single serving of Shakeology and mixing both in the same amount of cold water.

the good news is that I think I'm comparable to Shakeology. The bad news is that I spend an awful lot of money to get everything. My total was over $800 for everything. I did buy things in bulk so there are a lot of servings in what I purchased. I need to do some calculating to see if I can figure out how much of the ingredients I should use to have a proper comparison to Shakeology. I could have months or years worth of ingredients here.

We'll see how I feel after using it for a period of time.
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RE: Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
3/25/12 7:56 PM as a reply to mocarski.
mocarski:
When I decided I wanted to get back in shape and feel better again, I was hearing good things about P90 and P90X from people I knew. I could see that the program worked for them so I figured I'd give it a shot. I got the package in the mail and then found out about this website, the coaches, and all the support you get. Surprised the heck out of me. I thought I was just getting a dvd. Then I started hearing good things about shakeology here and got interested. I'm pretty careful about what I eat, especially processed foods, so I wanted more info about it to help me decide if I should try it.

I found an awful lot of personal testimonies about how great shakeology was and knew enough about healthy stuff to know that based on the ingredients list there's a lot of good stuff in it. If I was gonna justify the price I felt like I needed more info than I was finding so I started researching each ingredient. I wanted to know all the positives and negatives about each of them. It seemed that it was a good thing but I knew that even the best things aren't always good and aren't good for everyone. I came across a number of reports of people having issues with the product but not seeing many real answers about why they were having issues.

So I'm starting this thread to share what I learned.

First, the good:

There's a lot of positive stuff in shakeology and many of the ingredients have been scientific support around their benefits. A lot more than I expected. If I based my decision solely on what is in shakeology, I'd use it.

There's an awful lot out there about the good of shakeology so this section is shorter than otherwise. I don't need to repeat it. You can hear about it from members, your coaches, and by reading the other threads. Don't let the size of this section make you think it's not that good. The stuff in it is impressive IMO.

The bad:

Well, bad isn't the right word but I like Clint Eastwood movies and thought the name would be fun. This section is more to list in one place the things that might make you want to be cautious about using the product or that might make you want to check with your doctor to help you make an informed decision.

One of the questions about supplements and highly processed foods is how much of the nutrition and affects of the ingredients make it through the processing to the end product. There are two sides to this in relation to shakeology. The first is how much of the benefits of all those ingredients are available in the end product. I included info about the affects of processing on nutritional values on the attachment. I don't know if those values apply specifically to shakeology, but they seem to be a reasonable starting estimate. The second is that the possible negative interactions might have been processed out as well. So keep that in mind as you read this. Just cause an individual ingredient has a potential interaction, the final product may not have the same impact or interaction.

So here is a summary of things I found from the individual ingredients. If you want more detail or want to know which specific ingredient it applies to, check the attachment. Keep in mind that I didn't research the ingredients myself. I am not a scientist. This is info that I gathered from various websites. I tried to limit info to legitimate websites such as hospital or government sites, or that included citations or other things that lent legitimacy to the info they included. The info could be outdated or incorrect. Take it for what it's worth and please research further before you draw any final conclusions.

- Most ingredients have scientific support of their benefits, but there are a few that are questionable
- Camu-camu may not be sustainably grown
- some ingredients may be less effective than less expensive alternatives
- Be careful exceeding recommended dosages. contains compounds that can build in the body and cause serious issues
- Not recommended if nursing or pregnant
- Should not be taken prior to surgery

- possible interaction with Warfarin
- contains lactose, but may be more tolerated by lactose intolerant people due to the processing and formulation
- can affect medications broken down by the liver
- may negatively affect anticoagulants and phenacetin
- may interact with other herbs and supplements to cause nausea, itching, dizziness, stomach upset, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, sore throat, cough, and rash
- may negatively interact with the anticancer drug bortezomib under specific conditions
- may contain caffeine
- may negatively impact those with goiter
- may negatively affect those with celiac disease or with sensitivity to barley
- Not recommended if you have an immune system disease such as multiple sclerosis, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, or another condition known as an autoimmune disease
- May interact with Orlistat (Xenical, Alli)
- might increase the risk of bleeding in people with a clotting disorder
- may negatively impact treatments utilizing protease inhibitors, such as for HIV or AIDS
- may interact with medications in the calcium channel blocker family
- may reduce the effectiveness of tamoxifen
- May negatively interact with anticoagulants such as ibuprofen, aspirin, or warfarin.
- Not recommended for people who are taking certain types of antidepressants (monoamine oxidase inhibitors and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors)
- May produce negative symptoms for those with intestinal damage, a weakened immune system, or overgrowth of intestinal bacteria.
- May impact effectiveness of diabetes medications

The ugly:

Well, maybe the price but I can't say that shakeology is overpriced because I haven't researched what it would cost to buy all the ingredients separately. That might be my next research project lol.

I can't say there's anything really ugly about shakeology. If you believe that supplements have value, the shakeology seems to be something that should provide a lot of benefits for a lot of people but that isn't for everyone. Some people won't get benefits or could experience negative side affects. Anything with the number of ingredients in shakeology is likely to have negative interactions with some things.

If you have info that improves the info I found, I hope you will post it.


Do you think it not suitable for hypothyroidism? I'm a 20 year old woman that takes synthroid and asthma meds daily. Tried greenberry for the first time today and felt bad after. Idk if it was just me feeling under the weather but I had a headache, dizziness, and slight nausea. Really strange.. and btw, it did not taste good. What do you think of this?
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RE: Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
3/26/12 5:37 AM as a reply to Imaphatty77.
Imaphatty77:

Do you think it not suitable for hypothyroidism? I'm a 20 year old woman that takes synthroid and asthma meds daily. Tried greenberry for the first time today and felt bad after. Idk if it was just me feeling under the weather but I had a headache, dizziness, and slight nausea. Really strange.. and btw, it did not taste good. What do you think of this?


I did not find anything related to hypothyroidism that I can remember. Slight nausea isn't that uncommon. It happens for many people whenever they change diets. If that's all you were experiencing then I'd recommend cutting back on the amount to half or less in the beginning and seeing if your body just needs to adjust to it.

The first thing to consider is how sure you are the problems were caused by Shakeology. If you've experienced anything similar before then it could be due to something else. Also consider how serious the symptoms were. If they were minor, then I might consider trying it again.

I'd also look at the meds you are taking and see what those interact with and check against the ingredients list to see if there's any correlation there.

I'm no doctor and even if I was I'm not familiar with the details of your situation or treatment, so the best I can do is offer general advice. My sister has had issues with her thyroid for years and I understand how serious some of the problems that can cause. You would probably do best if you reviewed the situation with your doctor and get an expert opinion about whether anything in Shakeology could be causing you issues. It is possible that another flavor doesn't cause the reaction but you can't tell unless you can pinpoint the ingredient or ingredients that you want to avoid.

As far as the taste, some people really like it and some don't. Other than trying some of the recipes to mask what you don't like about it I'm not sure what you can do. I've played around with a lot of different supplements over the years and for me these things are more of an acquired taste. I've come up with some unique combinations to mask different things over the years so if you can post what you don't like about it, I may have some suggestions that worked for me.

Two examples are that many people are using almond milk and ice and blending. Doing that kind of thing tends to help with the chalkiness of these things. Every supplement I ever took that had whey protein in it was chalky to me. The other one that is a bit off the beaten path is using barbecue sauce to mask a grassy taste. I know this one sounds odd, but it does work. I can't promise you'll like the taste any better, but it sure does change it lol.

Good luck with it. I hope you'll keep us all posted what you find out.
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RE: Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
5/1/12 7:30 PM as a reply to mocarski.
Hi,

You wrote: "- Not recommended for people who are taking certain types of antidepressants (monoamine oxidase inhibitors and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors)". Why is that? I'm on Wellbutrin and Zoloft.

Thanks!
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RE: Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
5/2/12 5:44 AM as a reply to satori1223.
satori1223:
Hi,

You wrote: "- Not recommended for people who are taking certain types of antidepressants (monoamine oxidase inhibitors and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors)". Why is that? I'm on Wellbutrin and Zoloft.

Thanks!


Found that in relation to the gingko powder ingredient. I'd recommend researching gingko for specific interactions with your meds and/or check with your doctor.
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RE: Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
5/13/12 9:05 AM as a reply to mocarski.
mocarski:

- Not recommended if you have an immune system disease such as multiple sclerosis, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, or another condition known as an autoimmune disease


Thank you so much for this post! I was fixing to order this and saw your post.
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RE: Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
5/13/12 1:17 PM as a reply to jjnewboots.
jjnewboots:
Thank you so much for this post! I was fixing to order this and saw your post.


glad it helped. Keep in mind that none of my findings are conclusive. I wouldn't make or stop a purchasing decision based on what I posted. I'd use it as a flag to talk to your doctor to get a fully educated opinion.
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RE: Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
5/22/12 4:46 PM as a reply to jjnewboots.
jjnewboots:
mocarski:

- Not recommended if you have an immune system disease such as multiple sclerosis, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, or another condition known as an autoimmune disease


Thank you so much for this post! I was fixing to order this and saw your post.




I have rheumatoid arthritis, fibromalgia, asthma, and copd and I'm drinking Shakeology since 3/12/12. I have not felt so good and healthy, before. I have a lot more energry and less pain. I was taking over 10 medications and I'm now only taking my meds for my asthma. i believe it depends on each individual case, and it is always good to get the ok from your doctor first, although I did not. I was tired of taking so many medications and decided I was going to give Shakeology a try, so far so good, and 20 pounds less!!!! .

emoticon
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RE: Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
6/6/12 4:55 PM as a reply to dimples088.
I've continued with my analysis and experimenting. I decided to start buying the ingredients and see how the cost compared. I've got every ingredient that has scientific support in mine but left out questionable ingredients such as fructose. I'm adding nothing for flavor and the taste is fairly nutty and fruity. I can adjust the recipe to avoid any ingredients that may cause me issues, such as if I started getting stomach issues I could leave out the stuff that is known to cause those issues. My cost per serving is much less than Shakeology.

Following are the only ingredients I did not include compared to chocolate Shakeology

holy basil leaf
cellulose
chocolate powder
cinnamon powder
cocoa powder
Fructose
Hydrilla
MSM (methylsulfonylmethane)
Schisandra
vanilla flavor
xantham gum
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RE: Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
6/13/12 10:28 AM as a reply to mocarski.
Hey man! Alot of what you said is totally incorrect! First off, you say certain people wont get any health benefits, I strongly disagree. There will be health benefits because these superfoods cover all systems of body and doctors proven that it lowers ldl blood lipid levels, decrease degenerative disease risk, better digestion/gut health from pre/probiotics which most people never get daily. Fat burning is just an extra benefit to all health benefits! The idea is if youre drinking these superfoods, then you wont need to be on drugs and yes some people will experience side effects but thats usually because its cleansing their body from all the junk theyve been putting in it. Its a good thing! Theres nothing legit in a bad way you can prove about shakeology from a clinical perspective.
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RE: Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
6/13/12 12:38 PM as a reply to KINE28.
KINE28, out of all the points and info I provided, you select one that you didn't like and then post an inflammatory comment that "alot" of what I included is incorrect. Then you fail to provide any object info to support your opinion. Your argument is that 100% of people would derive benefit. I'd love to see the clinical evidence of that broad statement.

Was there anything else that you disagreed with or is your definition of alot a single item?

Unlike you I am not a coach so receive no benefit whether anyone buys or does not buy Shakeology.
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RE: Shakeology, the good, the bad, and the ugly
6/25/12 4:13 PM as a reply to mocarski.
I get sick every time I drink shakeology
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