Written by Erica Julson, MS, RDN, CLT on February 28, 2020 — median reviewed by Atli Arnarson BSc, PhD

Herbalife is a multilevel marketing company that sell nutritional additionally and personal care assets in an ext than 90 countries about the world.

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One of their assets is the Herbalife weight loss program, which uses meal replacement shakes and dietary additional to help people slim down.

While quick-fix diets prefer the Herbalife program can aid people lose weight in the quick term, they have the right to be expensive and may no be sustainable.

This article reviews the pros and cons the the Herbalife diet regimen to help you decide whether it might work because that you.

Rating Score BreakdownOverall score: 1.79Weight loss: 2Healthy eating: 2.25Sustainability: 2.5Whole human body health: 1Nutrition quality: 1.5Evidence-based: 1.5

BOTTOM LINE: The Herbalife diet is pricey and involves very processed shakes and many supplements, few of which have actually been linked to an adverse health effects. Short-term use likely causes weight loss, however long-term performance is however to be studied.

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How does the work?
Getting began on the Herbalife diet calls for a couple of simple steps.

Step 1: connect with an Herbalife elevation distributor

Since Herbalife is a multilevel marketing business, their products are only accessible for acquisition through Herbalife independent distributors.

You can affix with a distributor directly on the Herbalife website or via an individual connections if you know a certified retailer.

Step 2: pick your load loss program

The following step is to pick the Herbalife weight loss program that’s ideal for you. There are three versions to pick from:

The ultimate Program: includes every little thing from the advanced Program, plus two added supplements because that blood street management and also digestion

These programs variety in price from approximately $121–234 every month.

Step 3: begin the Herbalife diet

Following the Herbalife diet is relatively easy.

Simply change two meals each day through Herbalife shakes and also take the supplements that come through the regime you purchased.

There room no dietary constraints on the Herbalife diet, but it’s normally advised come drink many of water and eat small, frequent meals and also snacks that encompass plenty of fruits and vegetables.

There are no official recommendations for how long you need to stay on the Herbalife diet, but most people continue till they reach their weight ns goal.


To get started on the Herbalife program, simply affix with one Herbalife distributor, purchase the regime of her choice, and also start spend the shakes and also supplements.

Can it help you shed weight?

The Herbalife diet is draft to help people shed weight by reduce calorie intake v meal replacement shakes and boosting metabolism with supplements.

There can not use been any type of studies top top the full Herbalife load loss program, yet the meal replacement shakes do show up to assist with load loss.

Herbalife enjoy the meal replacement shakes

Each serving (two scoops or 25 grams) that the Herbalife meal replacement shower mix contains (1):

Calories: 90Fat: 1 gramCarbs: 13 gramsFiber: 3 gramsSugar: 9 gramsProtein: 9 grams

When mixed with 8 ounces (240 mL) that nonfat milk, the mix provides 170 calories per serving and is intended to be a short calorie meal replacement.

In general, enjoy the meal replacement shakes can aid you shed weight when used for as much as 1 year (2, 3).

In fact, research argues that they might be an ext effective for temporary weight loss than classic low calorie diet (4).

Only one study, which Herbalife sponsored, has actually tested the performance of Herbalife shakes specifically.

This study discovered that people who replaced 2 meals per day through Herbalife shakes lost an mean 12.5 pounds (5 kg) in 12 weeks (5).

Research is lacking on the long-term benefits of meal replacement shakes, yet at the very least one study argued that castle may aid to prevent weight obtain over number of years (6).

A second study uncovered that civilization who supplied meal instead of shakes because that 3 months before transitioning to a short calorie diet weighed much less after 4 years 보다 those who just dieted (7).

Overall, research argues that meal replacement shakes can help people to shed weight in the short term, but additional diet and lifestyle strategies may be necessary for long-term weight loss and also weight maintenance.

Herbalife supplements

The supplements recommended in the Herbalife load loss program include:

Formula 2 Multivitamin: a typical multivitamin with numerous minerals for basic nutritionTotal Control: a complement containing caffeine, ginger, 3 kinds the tea (green, black, and oolong), and pomegranate rind that insurance claims to boost energyCell-U-Loss: a supplement containing electrolytes, corn silk extract, parsley, dandelion, and also asparagus source that’s expected to alleviate water retentionAminogen: a supplement containing protease enzymes, i beg your pardon are stated to enhance protein digestion

While these supplements contain countless ingredients and claim to assist with energy, metabolism, and also weight loss, there have been no studies to prove their effectiveness.

Additionally, supplements no regulated by any kind of government agency for high quality or purity, so there’s no guarantee that they save the ingredients advertised.


Replacing two meals per day v Herbalife shakes can lead come modest weight loss, but it’s unknown even if it is the supplements the are part of the program have any added benefit.

In addition to aiding weight loss, the Herbalife program has actually a couple of more benefits.

It’s easy and also convenient

Meal replacement shakes choose the ones used in the Herbalife diet deserve to be attractive because that busy human being or those who lack the time or interest to cook.

To make the shake, every you need to do is mix 2 scoops of powder v 8 ounces (240 mL) the nonfat milk and also enjoy. The flour can also be blended with ice cream or fruit because that a smoothie-style drink.

Drinking shakes instead of cooking can dramatically reduced down ~ above time invested planning, shopping, and also preparing meals. The Herbalife regimen is also very easy come follow.

Soy-based shakes might be great for her heart

The main ingredient in most of the Herbalife meal replacement shakes is soy protein isolate, a form of protein powder that comes from soybeans.

Some research argues that eating soy protein may reduced cholesterol levels and also reduce your danger of heart an illness (8).

However, almost 50 grams per day are essential to realize these results (9, 10).

Two servings of Herbalife meal replacement shakes contain just 18 grams, so additional soy foods would must be contained in her diet (1).

A soy-free, dairy-free formula is available

For those v allergies or sensitivities to soy or cow’s milk, Herbalife uses an different meal replacement shake made v pea, rice, and sesame proteins (1).

This product is additionally made indigenous nongenetically amendment ingredients, for those that wish to avoid GMOs.


The Herbalife diet is convenient and easy to follow, and the soy-based shakes might even assist reduce your danger of love disease. Because that those sensitive or allergic to soybean beans or dairy, an alternate formula is available.

While the Herbalife diet program has actually some benefits, it also has fairly a few downsides.

Shakes are highly processed

Herbalife enjoy the meal replacement shakes room made with extremely processed ingredients, such together protein isolates, sugars, gums, fibers, artificial vitamins, artificial flavors, and also emulsifiers (1).

They additionally contain a range of added vitamins and also minerals to consist of for the nutrients these handle ingredients lack.

One that the biggest drawbacks is the the shakes are an extremely high in street — 40 percent that the calories in each serving come from included sugars, mainly fructose (1).

The civilization Health organization (WHO) recommends gaining no an ext than 5% that your everyday calories from added sugars, which translates to around 25 grams every day because that the mean adult (11).

Two servings the the Herbalife shake carry out 18 grams of included sugar, leave very small room for other sources throughout the work (1).

It’s typically advisable to acquire your nutrient from much less processed foods, such together high quality proteins, fruits, vegetables, totality grains, and healthy fats.

Could make you hungry

Although Herbalife shakes are defined as meal replacement shakes, they don’t contain sufficient calories come constitute a true meal.

When combined with nonfat milk, the shakes have just 170 calories, which will likely leave you feeling very hungry transparent the day.

Blending the shake with fruit can aid increase the calorie and also fiber contents however won’t add any added protein or fat to store you satisfied.

Can it is in expensive

Each container the Herbalife meal replacement mix contains 30 servings and costs just over $40.

Herbalife’s recommended two shakes per day converts to around $80 every month because that the shakes alone, not including the cost of supplements.

While swapping meals for shakes might save friend money ~ above groceries, this savings may not be far-reaching enough to justification the added expense of smoothies and supplements.

Herbal additionally may cause liver damage

The Herbalife load loss programs recommend number of supplements the contain a myriad of ingredients.

These additional haven’t been tested because that effectiveness and aren’t regulation by any type of government company for quality or purity.

It’s essential to watch for indications of adverse reactions come supplements, as these can occur.

In fact, there have been several reports of suspected liver damage due to Herbalife load loss supplements, sometimes requiring liver transplants or even causing fatality (12, 13, 14, 15).

Additionally, part Herbalife assets have to be contaminated through an overgrowth the the bacteria B. Subtilis, i m sorry is also linked come liver damages (16).

Keep in mind that adverse effects and liver damages can take place with many over-the-counter medications and also supplements.

It’s unclear even if it is the risks associated with Herbalife products are any kind of greater 보다 those of other supplements (13).

One research that Herbalife funded showed that protein-rich diets, supplemented with Herbalife Formula 1, didn’t adversely affect liver role (17).

Not appropriate for everyone

The Herbalife diet regimen is not ideal for everyone.

People through allergies, sensitivities or intolerances come the ingredient in the shakes or supplements have to not follow this program.

Since so numerous supplements space included, it’s crucial to inspect with your medical care provider to ensure castle don’t interact with your medications or medical conditions.


Herbalife shakes room expensive, highly processed and do no contain enough calories to be true meal replacements. The recommended supplements can additionally be dangerous for part people.

Though many of her meals will certainly be shakes while on the Herbalife diet, you have the right to have one consistent meal and two little snacks of your an option each day.

Herbalife no give in-depth diet advice about what to eat aside from the shakes and also supplements, for this reason you have the right to technically have whatever you want.

However, to promote load loss, the Herbalife website recommends a diet well-off in skinny protein, fruits and vegetables, nonfat dairy, whole grains, legumes, nuts, and also healthy fats.

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Most of your meals on the Herbalife diet will be meal replacement shakes, but you also get one meal and two snacks of your an option each day. Focus on short fat, low calorie, minimally handle foods.