Most Shakeology reviews have one thing in common: a vested interest in selling Beachbody products.
That’s because they’re all written by Beachbody “Coaches.” [side note: I was a Coach for a short stint several years ago, so I’m very familiar with their marketing methods.]
While I do sell a plant protein powder of my own, my analysis/review of Shakeology’s products is unbiased because I use three objective criteria when evaluating their protein powders: 1.) Ingredients, 2.) Nutrition, and 3.) Cost.
Here’s the thing …
Shakeology actually has a lot of good stuff in it.
Unfortunately, there are some ingredients they use that concern me though, as you’re about to see.
Scroll below to see the summary and full versions of my Shakeology review …
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Shakeology Reviews (Summary Version)
So here’s the deal …
In this section I’ll provide an analysis of Shakeology’s products as a whole and tell you the 4 things that concern me most about it. Below we’ll look at the complete nutrition facts and ingredients for each product separately.
Here we go …
Shakeology Nutrition Summary: All Products
|Grams of Protein||16-17|
|Protein Source(s)||Regular Shakeology: Whey protein isolate, pea protein, sacha inchi, flax, chia, quinoa|
Shakeology Vegan Protein: Pea protein, oat protein, rice protein, chia, flax, quinoa
|Grams of Sugar||6-8|
|Free of “Natural” Flavors||No|
|Free of Gums & Thickeners||No|
|Cost Per Gram||$.10|
Here are 5 things I wish Shakeology would improve:
- Shakeology’s products are not organic.
- Shakeology shakes have an average of 6-8 grams of added sugar per shake.
- At $.10/gram, Shakeology is one of the more expensive protein powders on the market. (Note: I use cost per gram to account for different serving sizes).
- Most of Shakeology’s non-vegan shakes contain whey protein isolate. Whey protein may do more harm than good for many people with dairy sensitivities or allergies.
- Shakeology has “natural” flavors. The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) has an awesome web resource that evaluates the safety of the most common food additives. In its “Safety Ratings,” CSPI says natural flavors “may trigger an acute, allergic reaction, intolerance, or other problems.”
Next we’ll break down the nutrition facts and ingredients for each of Shakeology’s products/flavors separately.
Shakeology Ingredients / Nutritionals Review
Alrighty, let’s start with the good. I actually like a lot of the ingredients in Shakelogy:
- Seeds: chia, flax, and quinoa
- Greens: moringa, chlorella, kale, spinach, and spirulina
- Probiotics/digestive enzymes
- “Adaptogenic blend”: ashwagandha, maca, etc.
However, like I said above, there are 5 major issues I have with Shakeology’s products:
- They’re not organic. Any “superfood” that’s not organic may be sprayed with cancer-causing pesticides and/or high is in heavy metals. In fact, Shakeology found itself in hot water a couple years ago when Dr. Oz. issued a warning about the lead levels in their products. Beachbody, Shakeology’s parent company, has since reformulated their products to address these concerns.
- Sugar content. 6-8 grams of added sugar is too much for a 160-170-calorie protein shake for non-athletes. If your body isn’t using that sugar during exercise, it will get converted into fat.
- Price. At $.10/gram, Shakeology is one of the most expensive protein powders on the market. It retails at $130 for 30 servings.
- Whey protein. For people sensitive to dairy, whey is not a good protein choice. Read my article Whey Vs Plant Protein. Shakeology does make several vegan proteins, as you’ll see below … but they all have 6-8 grams of added sugar, depending on the flavor.
- “Natural” flavors. Natural flavors can contain hundreds of different substances–many of them chemicals–and still be called “natural.” Here’s what the EWG has to say about them:
Consumers may be surprised to learn that so-called “natural flavors” can actually contain synthetic chemicals such as the solvent propylene glycol or the preservative BHA. Flavor extracts derived from genetically engineered crops may also be labeled “natural,” because the FDA has not fully defined what that term means.
Shakeology has 8 different products/flavors: chocolate, vanilla, cafe latte, strawberry, greenberry, chocolate (vegan), vanilla (vegan), cafee latte (vegan), and tropical strawberry (vegan).
Let’s have a look at the nutrition facts and ingredients for each, starting with the vegan ones, which I recommend over the whey protein based shakes.
I highlighted areas of concern in red below …
Beachbody Shakeology Nutrition Facts Labels
Vanilla Vegan Protein
Cafe Latte Vegan Protein
Chocolate Vegan Chocolate Protein Powder
Vegan Tropical Strawberry Protein Powder
Chocolate Protein Powder
Vanilla Protein Powder
Greenberry Protein Powder
Strawberry Protein Powder
Cafe Latte Protein Powder
Bottom Line: Is Shakeology Good for You?
Even though I have strong opinions about protein powders, I tried to remain as unbiased as possible in my Shakeology reviews.
From a nutrition standpoint, there are some really nice ingredients in Shakeology: quality protein sources in their plant-based ones along with with a nice mix of adaptogenic herbs, mushroom powders, and other superfoods.
However, the problems I have with Beachbody’s Shakeology shakes is they a) are not organic; b) have 6-8 grams of added sugar per serving, c) contain flavors, and d) are not cheap.
There are definitely worse protein powders you can buy, and the Chocolate Vegan flavor is the “cleanest” of the bunch when it comes to ingredients, based on my analysis.