Shakeology – 4 Month Update.

I began using Shakeology around the 8th of November, 2013. It is now the 8th of March, 2014 – four months later. It seems an appropriate time to provide everyone with an update on how my use of Shakeology is going. Do I still like it? Have I experienced further health benefits? Have some benefits dissipated, etc.?

For those who haven’t read my past posts, they are: Three Days on Shakeology (11/13), Shakeology – Almost a Month Later (12/13), and Shakeology, Garden of Life, and Vanilla (12/13).

An image from the Shakeology website of a Chocolate Shakeology drink.
An image from the Shakeology website of a Chocolate Shakeology drink.

To sum up, Shakeology is a super healthy shake with tons of ingredients meant to replace one meal each day. It comes in a 30-day supply bag (some other options are available) for around $130. There are several different flavors (vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry) – some are vegan, others not. Soon after beginning Shakeology an ailment with my legs that had limited me significantly for the past two years evaporated (though I can’t draw a clear cause/effect relationship between the two) and an issue with urinary hesitancy also disappeared.

Since then I have continued to experience almost no issues with my legs, but the urinary hesitancy has returned to some extent…however, I have not been faithful in utilizing Shakeology every day due to a number of factors – some relating to Shakeology and others due to moving, a busted blender, and so on which made making shakes a little more difficult.

I started off with Shakeology’s vegan Strawberry – which is good except the milling process appears not to be as fine as for its non-vegan options – and thus it can have a bit of a sandy taste. By the end of one month drinking it every day, drinking more of it on a daily basis made me feel nauseous.

For my next month’s shipment I switch to Vanilla. At first I loved Vanilla – it was non-vegan and thus didn’t have the grainy taste to it like vegan strawberry…but after a few servings I started getting a nasty aftertaste. I eventually returned the package, which they accepted without issues, though I have yet to receive a refund for the package…Hmm, I’ll need to follow up with them on that.

As an aside, I’ve also been frustrated with their phone system (specifically the “auto-attendant”, that is the computer system that asks questions and directs you to the correct department). I’ve had to call multiple times before getting a real person, the wait times appear to be totally inaccurate, and I suspect I am occasionally dropped into some black hole from which I would never emerge if I didn’t eventually hang up and try again. I don’t think this is intentional – but it is REALLY annoying.

Around the time I returned the Vanilla, Shakeology released a non-vegan Strawberry and I decided to give that a try. I thought maybe the issue with the Vanilla was the batch – but rather than take a chance, I figured I’d try Strawberry and I could always go back to vanilla. Strawberry is my preferred flavor anyways – I had just shifted away from it b/c of the grainy taste.

I received the Strawberry and it has been okay – but I have some vegan Strawberry left over and I actually like it more. Why? Well, the non-vegan Strawberry isn’t grainy (which I like) but it does have that same aftertaste as the Vanilla (which indicates to me that it probably isn’t a batch issue), and I prefer the grainy taste over the aftertaste.

That said, I’m still using both. I’ve been experimenting a bit with different ways to make the shakes taste better – frozen fruits, yogurt, ice cream, honey. The direction that has shown the most promise for me recently is using 12 oz of almond milk and no other ingredients besides the Shakeology mix. This provides a more “shake” and less “smoothie” drink which I can consume more quickly and thus either the graininess or aftertaste is not as big of a deal.

I’ve canceled my Shakeology auto-subscription for the moment – until I catch up on consuming the Strawberry (vegan and non-vegan) I currently have…but once I do, I expect to pick up the product again.

Overall, I think Shakeology has a great product which seems to provide significant health benefits. I would like to see a better milling process for the vegan products and the removal of the aftertaste from the non-vegan products. I also hope they will do something about their phone system. If they want, I’m sure I could fix the problem – I do IT consulting on the side and have worked with Inter-Tel, NEC, and cloud-based PBX systems. 😉

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