Herbalife vs Shakeology

Wednesday 29th May 2024

Is Herbalife good for you?… What about Shakeology?

In the Herbalife vs Shakeology debate, which is better?

I would say NONE. Don’t believe the over marketed hype that both are great shakes. You are going to throw your money down the drain.

I would not recommend either Herbalife or Shakeology for some pretty shocking reasons!

Click here to see the Best and Healthiest Meal Replacement Shakes.


Alternatively, Read the below to educate yourself on why I believe both these shakes are over rated and dangerous.

Herbalife and Shakeology are Multi level marketing Businesses.

Herbalife scam

Do you know what a MLM (Multi-level marketing) business model is? Well I’m constantly talking about MLM business models until I’m blue in the face because people deserve to know the truth.

BOTH Shakeology and Herbalife operate on this model.

So what is multi-level marketing?

Long story short MLM’s have also been referred to as pyramid schemes.

Effectively the model works by recruiting unaffiliated distributors to sell a product to the masses.

Every distributor can make more money if they hire other distributors to also work for them. This is why it is called multi-level marketing as the distributors can span many levels deep.

The reason why I hate this business model is because it always leads to lack of consumer education. The people selling are not officially employed by Herbalife. They are just getting the word out.

This means MLM products are often over hyped by distributors and even facts falsified, all in order to pocket a bit of commission on sale. It’s a great ploy to build awareness but the consumer interest is not really at heart.  The focus lies on recruiting as many distributors as possible to increase profit at the expense of truthful consumer education.

In the 1980’s herbalife was even sued by for making over inflated claims about their products and being a pyramid scheme. This is extremely concerning considering the amount of crap in their meal replacement shakes (See below!).

You want to hear real reviews from actual paying customers and not distributers.

I believe there are way better deals on the market. More affordable, healthier ingredients and you know you are not getting ripped off.

Why pay $736 rent for a run down studio with a hole in the ceiling, when you get pay 650 for a 2 bedroom furbished flat? …It’s a no brainer.

Herbalife vs Shakeology Nutritional Battle

 shakeology nutrition label

Herbalife made with Soyy??

 The protein sources in both these shakes differ. Shakeology is made with whey protein isolate while Herbalife Formula 1 uses soy protein isolate.

I always tend to avoid having Soy protein for a number of reasons:

  • Cheap + processed
  • Isoflavones are damaging
  • No evidence to support soy being good for you

Soy protein is one of the cheapest protein sources out there. It also has the highest amount of protein and iso-flavones compared to other soy products like Soy beans and tofu.

The higher amounts of protein and isoflavones can be damaging to the body. For example, isoflavones are plant based compounds that contain estrogen. Consuming high amounts of isoflavones has been linked to increasing the risk of cancer and hindering the long term development of child’s immune system.

In addition, the National institute of health does not recommend soy as there is not sufficient enough evidence to support the claim it is good for the body.

That is not to say that soy is completely bad as research is still very mixed on the potential benefits of soy on the body. If you want to consume soy I believe the safest way is to consume soy through natural sources like tempeh and tofu. One should consume no more than 22 to 54 mg per day. Which is equivalent to 3-5 servings.

Is Whey Protein more healthy than Soy??

Shakeology’s protein source comes from whey protein isolate. The downsides to whey protein isolate is that it does contain lactose. If you are unable to gut milk then whey protein isolate may lead to a unpleasant digestion.

Whey protein contains lactose and your body needs lactase to digest lactose. However, insufficient synthesis of lactase can lead to discomforts like gas, diarrhea, and abdominal pain.

If you have ever bought whey protein from a cheap source you may have experienced discomfort or passing gass a lot.

Essentially, whey protein is not a bad protein source by any means but it is still an un natural form of protein which our bodies find hard digesting.

In addition,  although whey protein is a great source of quick and easy protein, it does lack some important nutrients. For example, salmon adds heart healthy omega 3 fatty acids and vitamin B.

Vitamin B and Omega 3 may reduce the risk of heart disease. Steak on the other hand contributes iron and zinc to your diet. While turkey meat is a source of potassium, phosphorus, iron and zinc.

These are inevitably things you miss out on by having processed lactose infused whey protein isolate. I’m not saying these is anything wrong with whey protein. Athletes, fitness models, and normal people have met their workout and weight loss goals through consuming whey protein.

Nonetheless, it is still important to consider the benefit of consuming whole foods and the nutrients you could be missing out on.

Both shakes are High in SUGAR!


I don’t like shakes that are high in sugar. Period. Consuming in liquid form it goes straight to your blood stream. Sugar is cancerous as damage is always done over time. It never happens instantly.

Take my psoriasis for example, something triggered my skin cells to keep producing more skin. Im almost certain it was down to my high sugar and fatty diet prior.

9 grams for Herbalife and 7-8 grams for shakeology.

My recommended alternatives all have less sugar.

What is the sugar content made up of?

Herbalife gets its sugar content in the form of Fructose. On their company website they say fructose is organic and naturally found in fruits.

However, don’t let this deceive you. Fructose in natural foods like fruit is one thing but adding it into something like a shake is bad for your body.

Fructose is one of the worst types of sugars you can be adding to your body when consumed in shake form.

If too much concentration of fructose goes into the liver, the liver can’t filter it all fast enough for the body to utilise as sugar.

The side effect is our body uses this extra sugar as fat. According to zeitlin:  Zeitlin. “The more sugar you eat, the more fat you store.”

This not only is bad for your weight but can lead to complications in the future. Liver disease , auto immune diseases, Impaired glucose tolerance and hyper extension are all possibilities if consumed frequently over time.

The best and healthiest shakes on the market either use stevia. or another safer sweetener.

Shakeology on the other hand is the same as Herbalife where the sugar content comes from Fructose and stevia. For example, take the Vanilla protein powder which has non GMO fructose.

8-9 grams of sugar in their Shakeology products is simply unnecessary amount to have in a shake that is supposed to be healthy.


Herbalife is the so called cheaper option…However, there is a catch.. it really does depends on location you live and whoever is distributing.

There is no official Herbalife price for a formula 1 shake.

If you go to their company website, they provide a reason why.

“We always recommend customers take advantage of the knowledge, support and encouragement of their personal Member. This relationship is the reason we do not publish a price list online.”

 This is essentially one of the pitfalls of a MLM business model. Distributors get priority over the consumer. Herbalife can put their prices up because they want to build a stronger relationship with their distributors.


More distributer incentive = more profit

Hence profit and not improving the actual product are the driving force here.


Shakeology on the other hand is charging a ludicrous amount for their shakes. Buying Shakeology for 1 months supply will put you back a over $100.

This simply is ripping you off. There are so many better substitutes out there!

In addition, you are going $130 out of pocket for a supplement that is not even a meal replacement shake….

What do I mean by this? – Although Shakeology are sneaky in marketing this product as a full meal replacement, on their company website they specifically say that the shake is a dietary supplement.

This is important because for the expensive price of shakeology. The shake doesn’t have near enough calories to replace a full meal. This is one of the reasons why if you are replacing a meal you should add your own calories in the form of oats, or berries, bananas etc..

I’m a little bit unhappy with misleading their customers this way. If it is marketed as a meal replacement, then it should contain the proper calorie intake to not leave you starving.

You will be hungry having this for both lunch and dinner I can guarantee you that. At $130 you need to know that shakeology is not going to satisfy your appetite.

Vitamins and minerals.

Herbalife does not contain as much healthy nutrients as shakeology.

For example, Herbalife does include:

  • Protein /amino acid
  • Vitamins and minerals
  • Anti oxidants

However, unlike Shakeology it does not contain:

  • Phyto-nutrients
  • Fiber
  • Pre biotics
  • Digestive enzymes.

Shakeology contains all of these in addition to green super foods like quinoa, spiriulina, and wheat grass

Shakeology includes:

  • Phyto-nutrients
  • Fiber
  • Pre biotics
  • Digestive enzymes
  • Super Greens
  • Anti-Oxidant blend
  • Adaptogen blend

Here is where it gets Ugly.

Herbalife also contains many hazardous ingredients…

Canola Oil

 You don’t want to damage your internal organs with canola oil. Canola oil is a genetically modified product that is cheap to create and contains a ridiculous amount of processing.

This should scare you.

Canola oil is 90% genetically modified.

That is tons of artificial crap pumped into your liver and kidney. Trust me I know all to well about auto immune diseases. Anything that is processed is toxic for me and will also be for you.

Let’s take a look at how canola oil is made. Through using hexane (a neuro-toxin) it is extracted from the seed at high heat. This explains why traces of hexane have known to be found in cooking oils.

After extraction using the toxic hexane it is deodorized to remove the bad smell which masks the fact some of the oil is damaged.

Lastly the oil is served up to the unsuspecting customer.


Canola oil is also bad for your mind. For example, research was carried out on mice to see if canola oil shared the same benefits to olive oil. The mice that received canola oil reportedly had impairments to their memory and weight gain.

On the other hand the mice that had not received canola oil had normal brain and mental function.

Canola oil is also inflammatory…

Canola oil contains Omega 6 essential fatty acids. These acids stimulate inflammation and can lead to chronic inflammation.

With out modern diets and increase use and consumption of vegetable and canola oil We consume 20 times more Omega 3 then we need to.

Although some inflammation is necessary as a way to prevent infection or illness, overloading the body with omega 6’ can lead to a chronic inflammation and inevitably some health conditions.

Its simply not worth the risk.

Sucralose is basically cancer??!

Don’t believe what these distributers say “that herbalife formula 1 is healthy.” Sucralose (Splenda) is cancer in a packet.


It is an artificial sweetener that has many detrimental effects on ones internal system such as reducing good bacteria and causing weight gain.

A study was carried out that by Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health

which found that:

“Sucralose causes a 50% decrease in the level of good bacteria in your intestine. “

50% that’s crazy!…

The good bacteria in your body help your body absorb nutrients and contribute to the overall health of your internal immune system.

It gets worst…

Consuming sucralose can also increase the acidity levels in your intestine.

Auto immune diseases normally can be treated by reducing the acidity in your gut and intestines through clean and healthy eating.

The last thing you want to do is inflate these levels by consuming Herbalife on a daily basis. Over time it can always lead to problems. Issues arise chronically over time.

For example, eating sucralose on its own maybe one or twice over a month or two will be fine. However, the build up of sucralose from consuming daily a regular Herbalife shake will allow sucralose to build up in your system.

This is something the health companies and markets don’t tell you about these products.

The excess sucralose is Toxic and makes your cells toxic!…

Sucralose can also make you gain weight considering it is stored by your fat cells.

In summary Herbalife formula 1 contains a ingredient I would not want to be filtering into my bloodstream. How sucralose (splenda) is allowed to be in products is beyond me but this is the world we live in. Gotta dig deep and do your research.

Herbalife side effects?

Kill. Sounds like this stuff can literally kill someone. It kills me more how so many people lap up 1-2 shakes a day not knowing the potential damage they can be doing through consuming this.

We all love science based research. Research was carried out and printed in the Journal of Pharmacy Practice:

This showed the negative side effects from consuming Herbalife.

Here they are:

  • Allergic reactions
  • Increase blood pressure
  • Liver injury

Its really not surprising that liver injury is a potential side effect from consuming Herbalife. Sucralose is toxic on the liver, canola oil is toxic on the liver. ..soy..list goes on.

So if you don’t want to get long term liver damage and nutritional deficiencies stay away from Herbalife.

I keep saying this but as a psoriasis sufferer keeping a healthy gut is paramount for your skin and health.

Are the Nutrients in Shakeology at least better than the appalling Herbalife?

I would say that Shakeology is definitely better than Herbalife in terms of its nutrition value.

Shakeology does contain:

  • Phytonutrients
  • vitamins and minerals.
  • Prebiotics
  • Digestive enzymes

Phyton nutrient blend:

Spiriluna, Blue green algae, spinach powder, Barley Grass, Kamut grass, Oat grass, Wheat grass, Hydrilla Chlorella

There are a diverse list of nutrients each being healthy to consume. Spiriluna is one of the more popular phyton nutrients that is a alage found in lakes and rivers. It has anti ageing properties as well as keep cells from getting infected with disease.

Spinach powder as well is great for strengthening the heart and supporting the immune system.


Acerola Powder, Pomegranate Powder, Bilberry Powder, BlueBerry Powder, Lycium, Acai Powder, Maitake Powder, Citrus Bioflavonoids, Rose Hips Powder, Banana Powder, Carrot Powder, Orange Powder, Pineapple Powder, Raspberry Powder, Strawberry Powder

Adaptogen herb Blen

 Maca Powder, Astragalus Root Powder, Ashwagandha Powder, Cordyceps, Reishi Powder, Schisandra Berry Powder, Suma Root Powder, Ginko Powder


  • Bromelain
  • Protease
  • Lipase
  • Lactase
  • Cellulase
  • Papain
  • Amylase


Yacon powder, Bifodbacerium longum, lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobafillus bulgaricus, Lactobacillus casei, Streptococcus thermophilus.

But there is a catch…

Alarm bells start ringing when I find that there are natural flavours and xanthan gum.

Xanthum gum is a thickener that is most commonly found in processed foods. It has been known to cause intestinal gas and discomfort as well as throat irritation and nausea.

The natural flavours on the other hand are almost certainly not as natural as you would think.

I mean what are the natural flavours exactly? Shakeology fails to specify what these are in their nutrition label.

Also just because something is natural doesn’t mean it is natural in the way you would expect. The difference between natural flavours and artificial flavours is a lot more diluted and blurred than you think.

Natural means from natural sources. Something can originally be in its natural form but extracted, heated and added to and it most likely will still count as natural.

The difference is really down to the origin of those molecules.

Modified in a lab from a natural source or actually created and processed in a lab. Just know that artificial is 100% man made in a lab while natural is taken from a natural source even though things may get diluted and artificial in the process.

Its like a strawberry energy bar. The strawberries can be added to and extracted and it will still count as natural if they used a strawberry.

I believe the quantity of both xanthum gum and natural flavours are too minimal to cause any substantial health effects in the short term. However, it is worth knowing the truth and some labels may trick you into thinking its good for you.

Any food your going to be consuming on a regular basis needs to be high quality and you need to know in order to reach your weight loss goals.

Once again … Sugar is the reason I would not buy

I have to hawk back to my earlier point about sugar. Its pointless to have greens and  if your still consuming 7 g of fructose for lunch and dinner. That makes a total 14g if you decide to replace 2 meals.

For a so called health product this is simply absurd.

For example, there are plenty of alternatives on the market that have much lower sugar levels than Shakeology. For spending $130 on a premium shake you would expect a product with less sugar.


Herbalife has low calories at 90g per serving. One might think this is great. However, you don’t want to be starving yourself to lose weight.

Calories are crucial for you energy levels and overall health. You don’t want those skeleton cheeks that are devoid of any kind of carbs. Skin hanging off a bony calorie deprived body.

Do both shakes work??

Anything can work for weight loss if your operating on a calorie deficit. I can lose weight on just eating 1 bar of chocolate and a pack of chips for the days on end and say that I lost weight utilising them.

So the question you should be asking is are they healthy and are they the best on the market. In my mind out of the two, Shakeology is clearly the winner.

However, the sheer price of Shakeology, the fact they operate under a MLM and the fact their sugar content is high are strong enough reasons why I would not buy Shakeology either.

My advice would be to go for something that will work and allow you to get what you want. Go for my best Shakeology alternatives here.


I would never buy a Herbalife shake in my life. Poisonous level of sugar content, unhealthy ingredients and business model to match that of a Bernie Madoff ponzie scheme.

Shakeology on the other hand…is simply not worth the money you pay for it. Your paying $130 for 8 grams of sugar per serving.

Consume this shake twice daily and your fuelling your body full of fructose which is unhealthy.

Its clear that the difference between Herbalife and Shakeology really is not that much. Both operate under a multi-level marketing business model and both are high in sugar.

Shakeology is more healthy in terms of its nutritional value. It contains way more nutrients than a Herbalife shake.

Nonetheless, I’m still probably never going to buy these shakes in my lifetime.

My Solution

woman drinking shake

I personally take and recommend my favourite alternatives to Herbalife and Shakeology.

These are some of the best shakes on the market. Healthy and affordable and will set you up perfectly for losing weight the right way.

Check out the Healthiest Meal Replacement Shakes


Alternatively You don’t always need shakes.

Lets’ bust another myth out there that some people tend to believe. Meal replacements shakes are not the ONLY way to lose weight. There is no secret formula of vitamins and nutrients that will help you lose weight.

Meal replacement shakes are great for their convenience. Just blend or shake them up. However, If you meal prep your foods before going about your day that is also a great alternative.

Realise that before you buy shakes you have to understand the power of a calorie deficit. The same ingredients you get in a shake are even better in whole food form.

Remember long term weight loss you are not going to be relying on replacing all meals with shakes for the rest of your life. Shakes are great but only in moderation. As long as you understand that then we are good to go.



2 thoughts on “Herbalife vs Shakeology”

  1. Acording to the this post saying for herbalife products that has such ingredient that are toxic for your organs I absolutely don’t agree because to my logics that this is played for criticize herbalife, I used herbalife for 1 year and lost 34 kg for 6months and 6 months later weight was the same according to the program I stay the same meals and I don’t feel to need and shakes anymore, my weight is the same.

    • Hey Ben,

      Its not whether you lose weight or not. You can lose weight on absolutely anything. If I eat only a chocolate Oreo a day I will lose weight.

      What matters most is how you decide to do it. If you want to drink Herbalife everyday with the amount of sugar it has then be my guest. Remember that damage to the body also happens over time. You may not be thinking its impacting you now but it is.


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