Shakeology Review

A guest post from 12 Star Diamond and founding coach, Traci Morrow When Shakeology was added to our exclusive Beachbody Coach store, it made a lot of sense to me: the idea of a meal replaced with a shake that in effect, filled in the large gaps of my present diet’s nutrition. An unhealthy accumulation of days – even years – stacked up where my body wasn’t getting what I was needing and I felt it. Tired, feeling run down from my busy life, and out of time to prepare what I thought I needed – or did I even know what that was? Fruits that don’t taste all that great anymore because they’re pulled from the trees or vines too early for mass crops, vegetables that came from a frozen bag and devoid of flavor as well. I’m a terrible pill taker, so my multivitamin consumption was more hit than miss. A shake that “acted like a salad but tasted like a dessert” is what it said, and as a protein shake consumer, I was game.

Shakeology turned out to be far more than I knew to hope for. A complete system: two workouts (30 and 50 minutes), a month of recipes for both flavors, and a meal plan (through the Club) for how to incorporate the shake into my day? This wasn’t just a meal replacement shake that was going to require me to figure out how to incorporate it into my day – this was a lifestyle shift and one I desperately needed if I wanted to LIVE healthy. I love being able to speak from personal experience of how the Shakeology system has helped me regain energy, and have everyone I love on it! My 70+ year old parents, my 86 year old father in law, my siblings, my teenagers, and my 6 & 7 year olds love it too. All ages, both genders; experiencing health in a shake and a lifestyle shift that helps “End the Trend” of obesity, fast food diets, and highly processed foods that harm our generation..starting with us. ☺ If you’d like to try Shakeology for free, ask for a free sample and I’ll be happy to send you one!

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These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Shakeology – From The Fields Video

Watch the video to see how Shakeology’s ingredients are sourced from the world over

Follow the adventures of Darin, Shakeology’s Ingredient Hunter, as he finds the ingredients that make Shakeology the healthiest meal of the day.

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You are What You Eat

“Let food be thy medicine.” Hippocrates

 

I have been doing research on nutrition lately, specifically about how certain super foods help the body heal itself. I am particularly interested in this because I have an auto-immune disease that hampers my immune system and I also have a blood clotting disorder. It’s amazing to learn about how the different ingredients found in Shakeology help my body boost its immune system and also regulate the viscosity of my blood. The more I learn, the more excited I get!

 

It is continually driven home to me that living a healthy life is not about waiting for disaster to strike and then looking for a drug to fix it. It’s about giving my body the most powerful foods in the world so it can function properly–before disaster has a chance to strike. It is prevention rather than a cure.

 

Did you know that in a sense we actually ARE what we eat? On the most basic cellular level (where everything starts and ends with our bodies), food becomes a part of our DNA, a part of the systems that operate the body. Pause and think about that for a minute. I put a Happy Meal in there and what am I allowing–causing–my body to become, besides chemicals, corn syrup, animal byproducts and I-don’t-even-know-what-else? I drink a bottle of wine and how does that affect my brain, kidneys, liver, heart? I eat a whole bag of Doritos (or a handful!) and what does that do to the cells of my body, not even to mention the amount of fat that not only sticks out on my belly and my thighs, but actually intertwines itself around all of my internal organs like thick mud?

 

On the other hand, what does Shakeology make my body do and become? Simply put, it frees it up to become a disease fighting machine. The adaptogens support my immune system (ESPECIALLY important for me!), protect me from the ravages of stress and balance my endocrine system. The pre- and probiotic enzymes help my body digest the nutrients I take in and keep me regular. The phytonutrients (super-greens) detoxify my organs and alkalize my body (which fights tissue inflammation inside my body), the anti-oxidants (super-fruits) help my cells fight degeneration (cancer, chronic disease) and promotes my healthy heart and blood pressure. The super-protein blend helps me build lean muscles, improves my skin and hair, reduces my cravings for junk food and gives me mental clarity.

 

If we ARE what we eat, then I want to BE Shakeology!

 

“But wait. It’s kinda expensive, right? Maybe I’ll go to my local big box store and just get a huge case of one of those canned meal replacement drinks. I mean, I eat pretty well otherwise so do I REALLY need all those ingredients?

 

I saw a shake the other day that is only $1 a serving! a DOLLAR! Who cares that it is stored and shelved for months on end in a metal can–even though when Shakeology is processed no metal or human hands touch it. Is it REALLY that big a deal that it is a Canola oil-based drink that is fortified with vitamins and stabilized with chemicals?

 

Sure, I understand that Shakeology is made from 70 whole foods that have each been slowly dehydrated at differing temps and rates to ensure their continued ‘raw,’ bio-available state. But, this canned drink also has a lot of vitamins and minerals in it!

 

Does a person REALLY need all of these mumbo-jumbo super foods? Isn’t that just a FAD? And, sheesh, did I mention how CHEAP it is? Yeah, it costs a THIRD of what Shakelogy costs! I just don’t think I can afford $3.30 a day for a health drink, no matter what it does for me!

 

I mean, is it THAT important what’s in the drink as long as you get some vitamins and minerals?  Surely if this drink is sold right here in America it can’t be all that bad for you, right? It’s probably just not as vogue as something like Shakeology and therefore a lot cheaper…I bet they throw in a whole bunch of random hard-to-pronounce ingredients into Shakeology just so they can charge more! At least I recognize Canola-oil and non-fat milk and…well, there are some scientific things  that I can’t pronounce in the canned drink (okay, a LOT of them).  But, I just don’t know.  Gosh, my spouse is going to think I am insane for spending this much money on a health drink!

 

So, maybe I won’t go with the canned drink because, honestly, it DOES look like Frankenfood, but I just don’t think I can afford that 3 bucks a day.  I think I might just finish up the whey protein powder I have–all 6 months’ supply of it–and then think about this more around the New Year.  Yeah, I’ll definitely be looking to get healthier then…”

 

If you really are what you eat, why would justify putting off Shakeology another minute, my friends? I know it’s an investment, believe me! I buy two bags of it a month!  But can you really afford NOT to make this investment in your health? Think about it.

 

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Shakeology: 3 Ways for $3

4 flavors

 

Sometimes when I tell people the cost of Shakeology, they respond with surprise.  They are used to seeing whey drinks at their local big box store that are fortified with vitamins and minerals and then pumped with about 200 calories via dextrose or high fructose corn syrup so they can be shelved and then sold for $34.99.

I do not try to explain that one bag of Shakeology has all the superfoods (and then about 60 more) that you have ever heard of in your life, all packed into one bag in a live, raw, whole food formula.  I do not share that Shakeology costs $650 LESS than what you would pay for its ingredients individually at your local supplement shop (so not kidding). I simply say,  Hey: I am on the lowest of low budgets. I get it.  Here is how Shakeology ‘works for me 3 ways for about $3’:

1. It’s my multi-vitamin. For the ladies out there, under the guidance of your doc you might feel you need to add a Cal-Mag supplement (I don’t because I get these in the rest of my diet, but I digress).  But, besides this you’re generally good to go. Men, you too! (And, I say GENERALLY here, not because I am clueless, but because you might have some tropical disease we’ve never heard of and need more vitamin K or something, and then try to sue me because your case is one in a billion. So, please don’t try to sue me: you’ll see that I really AM on that tight budget! 🙂 ).

In all seriousness, though, when it comes to supplements, let’s here and now make a resolution.  Altogether: no more buying, ingesting, shelving-but-not-taking pill-form vitamins!  Let’s get our nutrients from whole food sources our bodies can use, starting with Shakeology.  The first reason is on account of your pee.  Yep, you read right.  One thing everyone notices, even if only the brave mention it, is that you never see Shakeology in the potty when you go #1. That’s because its vitamins and minerals are whole-food based, not fortified, and are highly bioavailable. In short, your body uses, instead of eliminates them. That means no bright yellow B-complex vitamins in ye old toilet.  No literal flushing of your money down the drain.  Good news, yes? (You should be feeling better already that you’re not going to buy something that your body refuses to absorb. Keep reading!).

2. It’s my recovery drink. Yep, if you are doing hard cardio for 30-60 min (and you are, right because you want to live past 59, RIGHT?), you need a recovery drink.  It should have a carb to protein ratio within the 2:1 to 4:1 range. Why? LOTS of science going on with this, but briefly: right after we exercise our bodies need a modest amount of protein for tissue resynthesis (muscle rebuilding) and a goodly amount of sugars (fast and slow) for glycogen (sugar energy) restoration. Sounds complicated, but bottom line: you want to cut down on fatigue and muscle soreness? Do a recovery drink within the 30 min post-workout window.

Happily, Shakeology is an exceptional recovery drink. It has just enough protein to piggyback onto the sugars as they absorb into the system, no fat (the bod does not process fat very well right after exertion) and its normally-low glycemic load can be tweaked by adding by adding fruit juice and fruit. In fact, bonus: recovery time is the ONLY time I (and I suggest YOU) drink fruit juice, which is definitively high-gylcemic and usually not optimal for good health.  So having juice is a treat in the first place and then putting it in your  Shakeology after you work hard is not only a delicious experience, but a health boon.  It not only TASTES good but FEELS great going down and gets right to WORK where your body needs it.

3. It’s my snack or a meal. I drink Shakeology as I get ready for the day, right after working out. My daily nutrition usually consists of three small meals and two snacks, so Shakeology generally fits in as a snack. But for me it is (and this may be an unofficial #4 reason) also a mental life-line after teaching hard classes or doing, for example, T25 on top of everything ELSE I do. I sometimes use it as a ‘carrot’ in front of me to get through workouts and classes, etc:” I GET to have a Shakeology when this is over! Yay!”

A couple of hours after my Shakeology I’ll have a mid-morning omelet, if I can, or a high-protein something or other with lots of veggies for my official breakfast. And with that my day is off to a fantastic, healthy, not-sore, cravings-free start.

So, it went by in a flash.  Did you see what I just did? I mapped out how I hit three IMPORTANT daily nutrition points in 1 easy shake and for about $3: a multi-vitamin, a super-duper healthy snack and a recovery drink. Now, go price a breakfast bar, a multivitamin, a carton of chocolate milk and a sugary sports drink and then tell me that you can get them all for $3 and for about 250-300 pristine-clean calories. It simply can’t be done–I’ve tried it.  Oh, you might be able to come close–say $5, which isn’t close. It’s almost double, I’m being kind here–but the nutrient profile of what you’d buy would be so differentiated from that of one Shakeology as to make you gasp.  And you’d miss out on the huge cart-load of superfoods in Shakeology that have been carefully sourced and provided for you, even if you have less than a clue as to how they work, what they exactly are and where you might find them. (You COULD find out, though, if you want, just go here and surf around a bit).

Hey this next part is thrown in free of charge (which is funny, you see, because you are not actually paying for this post).  In case you were wondering the reason many bars and sugary drinks and even cartons of milk are cheap-ish to buy, it’s that they tend to be loaded with chemicals, preservatives and heavensknowswhatelse in order to give them max shelf life, mass appeal and quick turnover rates.  They are engineered to SELL not HEAL. The whole POINT of Shakeology is to NOURISH and RESTORE the human body, whether that body sits at a desk all day long or sets world records in sprinting).  This is why comparing Shakeology and all the above snacky foods is really quite silly.  It’s like comparing apples to road apples, really (and if you’re not sure what those are, go ask a farmer).

The bottom line is, not how CAN you afford to drink Shakeology, but how can you NOT?  If you eat more than boxed powdery cheese ‘pasta’ and worm-like dehydrated sodium-ramen, you can.  I know.  I’m (presently) as low budget as they come and I drink my Shakeology DAILY.  I simply build my daily nutrition starting with Shakeology as the foundation.  It’s the first item in my food budget.  This is exactly what and where Shakeology should be.

Cheers to health!

Food for Thought, for Now

This post has been a long time in coming, like about 20 years.  Let me to explain.  In my 20s I played college basketball, training like a fiend with sometimes two-a-day practices plus adding additional weight room and cycle time in the evenings.  Back then, the early 90s, even collegiate sports coaches promoted a high carb, low-fat diet.  I followed the trend and consequently ate very little fat, gorged on starchy carbs (lots of cereal and bread), and ate as much lean meat as I could.

I was in the best shape of my life, but I would not say I was healthy.  My body composition was impressive and I performed at an elite level, but I was prone to injury and colds, the latter of which would invariably turn to bronchitis and sometimes even exercise-induced asthma.  I didn’t sleep very well (or long) due to college demands, training and away games.  I was hungry, tired and sore most of the time.

That is not to say I did not try.  Everything I did was aimed at performing as an elite athlete, including ‘carb loading’ before games, shunning fat even when I craved it and relying on grains rather than lean proteins.  In the back of my mind I knew that if I let up on my training even for just a while (say, Christmas Break) I’d go nuts eating everything in sight and gain a bunch of weight.  I was profoundly, deeply hungry.  But I kept on, trusting my coaches and contemporary wisdom, and believing I just needed to remain focused and disciplined.

Clearly, there was a lot wrong with my approach.  I know that now because in the intervening years I became a fitness coach and have formally studied nutrition. I have also experimented personally with various nutrition programs to see what works for me and what does not.  Here are some principles that have helped me.  I offer them to you as food for thought.

1.  Eat real food.  This may sound obvious: what else would you eat?  Well, lots of stuff.  In fact, much of what passes for food in the modern Western diet is actually processed ‘food product” laden with chemicals, food coloring and preservatives.  It’s all about shelf-life and profit so much of the food found in the average grocery store is ‘built to last’ with preservatives and additives, and then packaged and put on the shelf for the long haul.  Do yourself a favor and shop the perimeter of the store, where all the fresh stuff is.  Fill your cart with fresh veggies, fruits and other perishable items.  Check labels.  If you can’t pronounce it, why would you put it in your body?  Look for corn syrup (which shows up in over 85% of grocery store items), artificial (chemical) sweeteners and other additives that just don’t do a body good.  If the item is represented by a cheetah, comes in colors made in a lab, or could survive a nuclear blast, pass it by.

2.  To diet or not to diet?  I do not diet and suggest you don’t either.  Diets are temporary, desperate attempts to change one’s body without changing one’s life.  That’s why they never work, or at least not for long.  You eventually fall back on old habits.   Instead, develop new ones.  Learn to feed your body with whole foods that give you fuel and enjoyment.  Trust me, you’ll feel better and you’ll possibly once and for all be able to separate what you eat from feeling guilt.

This all said, of course there are food philosophies/nutrition plans that are more sound than others.  I continue to learn and grow, but I have mine in place, which you’ll see below is a version of the ‘Paleo Diet.’ Without preaching that to you too hard core (you can make up your own mind by checking out the links below) here are some general suggestions that I have found very helpful.

3.  Go grain-free for a week.  Okay, or at least wheat-free.  There is growing scientific evidence (from the Paleo, Primal and Zone camps, just to name a few) that our bodies weren’t meant to process grains, but instead were designed for plants (the grown up version of the grain).  So pumping our bodies full of grains packs on belly fat, causes inflammation, diabetes, heart disease, cancer and many other health problems.  If you’re interested in learning about this, start  your research with wheat and work from there.  If not, simply forgo the wheat for a week. Don’t do it dirty and add a bunch over other high-glycemic grains like corn to compensate, okay? Just add lots of veggies and some fruits and see how you feel.  And make sure you don’t skimp on good fats; your body needs them to feel satisfied and full! I bet you’ll feel pretty good and notice your tummy is flatter.

4. Proteins, carbs and fat: how much?  Health experts, and well, everyone, seem to disagree about which mix of macronutrients we really need.  The thing is, it truly depends on many factors: size, body type, physical activity level and type, just to name a few.  I have found that eating a diet that is comprised of about 45% protein, 35% fat and 20% carbs is right for me, but mind you I don’t measure my food or count grams.  I just know what to eat now to make this happen: lots of protein, very little, if any, grains, just a little fermented dairy, some roots and tubers, tons of non-starchy veggies and some fruit.  This mix helps me stay full, have energy for workouts (and life!) and avoid cravings.  It also keeps me lean without having to work so hard.

But what kind of protein? I love the idea of being vegan but I have found it really hard to fully embrace the lifestyle.  When I tried it I had to eat constantly or supplement like crazy, and I never felt like I could crush my workouts with the energy level I had at any given time.  I fundamentally disagree with eating soy burgers and other non-fermented soy ‘products’ that are dressed up to look like meat (ahem, tofurkey and soy burgers), so in going vegan I personally felt limited in my protein variety.

That said, I also don’t like the idea of eating copious amounts of meat every day (the classic high-protein way).  This is as much from a sense of taste (don’t really love the bloody meat) as a sense of conscience.  The commercial food lots in America depress me and it’s hard knowing I am a part of them and they become (literally) a part of me when I eat their corn-finished, antibiotic-injected, inhumanely raised feed lot cows.

So…, if I had to label what I do I’d call it Paleo Plus.  I agree with the science behind the Paleo diet, but I tweak it to fit my life.  When I eat red meat, which isn’t often, I go for the organic, non-commercially farmed stuff whenever possible.  I go for variety: organic, local eggs, wild-caught  fish and shellfish, free-range chicken and turkey, wild game, sprouted beans and brown rice, quinoa, and vegetables like asparagus and broccoli that are high in protein.

You might be thinking: beans and rice are not Paleo, right? Well, the good news is, as I’ve noted before, sprouting solves the problems associated with them (if you don’t know what I’m referring to, now worries, just click on hyperlink above).

5.  Pick a Plan and Keep Track.  If you are starting your fitness adventure, go with the nutrition program that came with your workout (for those of you clever enough to get a Beachbody workout on the up-and-up: your program came with a complete plan designed to go with our workout).  After the first two weeks or so, evaluate what is working for you and what is not.  Dig a little and see what tweaks you might make that will help you.  As you advance in your fitness you may find you need more or less protein, that your fat intake is too low, or whatever.  You’ll start understanding what your body needs versus what your emotions crave.  Don’t be afraid to make changes.  However, don’t do this whimsically.  If you feel hungry all the time and lacking energy for workouts, up your calories by about 200 calories.  If you feel like you are eating too much, decrease by 200.  If you choose to cut something out in order to see if your body doesn’t like it, don’t cut out three things at once, but just one.  Pretty soon, you will just be able to eat and enjoy without counting and figuring so much.  It might take a while, but you’ll get there.

6.   Drink Shakeology.  Confession:  I’m not much of a supplement person.  I never remember to take vitamins and when I do, they hurt my tummy.  So when the superfood health shake Shakeology came along and promised to be my multivitamin, a daily snack or meal (complete with high-quality protein) and a post-workout drink, I jumped at it.  Now, two years, later, I take it every day and recommend it to all my friends and clients.  Not only is it simply an incredible product, but it’s a needed one.  Most people lack vital nutrients found in Shakeology and can’t match the potency of  Shakeology (it is guaranteed at 90% potency, way above industry standards).  Its 70 whole-food ingredients are bioavalable, or ready-to-use for your body.  This is important because while many supplements list daily allowance levels, their potency and bioavailability is never questioned.  It’s hard to know what your body is really absorbing when you take them.  Rest assured, you’ll feel great drinking Shakeology and you’ll never see traces of vitamins from it in the toilet, if you know what I mean.

Plus, it really is affordable.   I regularly meet people who concoct their own recovery or breakfast drink, take a multi and take other supplements such as pro-biotics, flax seed or fish oil, and of course eat at least one daily healthy snack.  I challenge anyone to do make all three of these at home for $3-4.  Unless you’re using a box of mac n cheese or ramen noodles in the mix, it simply cannot be done.  And we haven’t even delved into WHAT the 70 whole-food ingredients (many of them superfoods) are and do for our bodies.

It sounds too good to be true but it IS true: for a few bucks a day, Shakeology is not only one of the world’s finest health shakes, it’s a nutritonal power-house and quite an affordable one at that. ( Research for yourself my friends, and then blend away!

So, there you go.  My thoughts on food, for now.  Hope this helps.

 

For further reading:

www.myshakeology.com/kellibuzz

www.marksdailyapple.com

www.paleodiet.com

www.realfood.com

www.wheatbelly.com

www.drsears.com

 

 

Fudgy Shakeology Bars

The classic flavors of chocolate and peanut butter meld together in this healthy snack that is masquerading as a decadent treat! Packed with protein and super foods, completely wheat and gluten-free, and naturally low in sugar, what’s not to love about these fudgy bars? So go ahead and indulge, my wonderful staying fit-over-40 friends (or 20-somethings or 60-plusers): you won’t blow your nutrition plan, I promise!

A culinary note: once you get the basic recipe down (Shakeology, whey protein, banana) you can riff on the theme.  Try using less flavor-forward almond butter and add dried fruit such as cherries or cranberries and substitute sliced toasted almonds for the oats for a rich chocolate-nutty-tar- fruit combo.  Or extracts such as mint or almond to intensify your favorite flavor profiles.  Go truly crazy and crush up a candy cane to add some holiday cheer.  It’s hard to go wrong so have fun!

Total Time: 1 hr., 10 min.
Prep Time: 10 min.
Yield: 4 bars

Ingredients:
• 1 scoop Chocolate Shakeology
• 1 scoop Beachbody Whey Protein Powder
• ½ cup natural peanut butter
• ½ banana
• ½ cup rolled oats

Preparation:
1. Mix all ingredients together.
2. Freeze for at least 90 minutes in an 8″ x 8″ pan.
4. Remove from freezer, cut into 4 squares.

Nutritional Information (per serving):

Calories: 249
Fat: 10g
Saturated Fat: 2g
Cholesterol: 13mg
Sodium: 76g
Carbohydrate: 25g
Fiber: 4g
Sugar Total: 6g
Protein: 16g