Nutrilite shake Review: Does it work?

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Expert rating: 3.2/5

Customer rating: stars-icon voted

Intro: What is it?

Nutrilite shake is a meal replacement offered in Chocolate Fudge, Strawberry, and Vanilla, all inside a ready to drink bottle.  Each bottle offers 25 grams of protein, as well as nutrients the company claims will help you power through a workout.

It’s made specifically for helping people gain and retain lean muscle, while still being able to lose weight. It even has added antioxidants which is claimed to help provide support during strenuous exercise. So is there a benefit to using Nutrilite? How effective is it really? You’ll understand exactly what this shake delivers in this comprehensive review.

Nutrilite Ingredients

Here are all the ingredients to the Vanilla flavor:

Water Milk Protein Concentrate Calcium Caseinate Whey Protein Concentrate Erythritol
Fructose Safflower Oil Inulin Cellulose Gel Cellulose Gum
Potassium Citrate Natural Flavor Soy Lecithin Sodium Phosphate Salt
Reb A Carrageenan Sodium Ascorbate Acerola Sodium Selenite

The most prominent ingredients include:

Potassium Citrate: Used to control the acidity of a food, it’s recommended to be taken in a liquid solution, since it’s known to damage the stomach lining.

Cellulose Gum: Thickener found in toothpaste, laxatives, and paint. A study featured in the International Weekly Journal of Science showed it caused the following in mice:

low-grade inflammation and obesity/metabolic syndrome”

This means it caused damage to metabolism and it increased the likelihood for obesity, as well as producing inflammation.

Sodium Selenite: A source of the mineral selenium, this ingredient can cause toxic effects in large doses.

Acerola: A vitamin C rich cherry. It can cause diarrhea, nausea, insomnia, stomach cramps, and fatigue.

Macronutrients and Calories

Calories 190 Calories From Fat 50 Total Fat 6g, 9% Saturated Fat 1g, 5% Cholesterol 15mg, 5%
Sodium 220mg, 9% Potassium 240mg, 7% Total Carbohydrate 34g, 11% Dietary Fiber 5g, 19% Sugars 6g
Sugar Alcohol 22g Protein 25g Vitamin C 100% Calcium 50% Iron 6%
Selenium 10%

 Calories

Lots of calories are provided via the 190 which likely come from the milk protein, 50 of these calories which are from fat. The overall fat content is:

50/190= 0.263 times 100= 26.3% fat per serving.

This qualifies it as a high fat food, according to the FDA. They assign anything 20% or above as being high fat.

Sugars

There are 6 grams of sugar and 22 sugar alcohols per serving from the following:

Erythritol: Sugar alcohol that’s mostly undigested, most of it is exerted from urine and stool. High amounts are known to cause stomach pain and nausea.

Fructose: Fruit sugar when eaten on its own and not via fruits that’s known to lead to many side effects.  According to the Medical Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Fructose:

reduced 24-h plasma insulin and leptin concentrations”

This means it actually works against hunger suppression; it can make it so you eat more. It’s also been linked to an elevated risk for obesity as well.  The same study also showed:

“potential risk factor for cardiovascular disease.”

It has been shown to clog arteries and raise cholesterol, raising the risk for heart attacks.

Reb A (Stevia Extract): Patented extract found from the Stevia leaf which is made from the sweetest part of the Stevia plant. It’s 200 times sweeter than sugar and is known to regulate blood sugar.

Though there’s good Stevia added there’s 6 grams of Fructose which has been shown to cause an increased risk for obesity.

The Quality of Nutrilite’s protein

25 grams of protein come from the following:

Milk Protein Concentrate: A 40% or more protein by weight source. It’s a processed form of skim milk which is spray dried and often added to foods as a stabilizer.  According to the Food and Water watch organization:

MPC’s are largely unregulated”

The group has expressed concern over potential melamine contaminations, which means it could have toxic effects such as spreading cancer, and causing reproductive damage. Milk Protein Concentrate is largely imported from China and Mexico, which due to the FDA only reviewing around 1% of imports according to the Food and Water Watch organization, greatly increases the risk for unnecessary contaminations.

Calcium Caseinate:  Extracted from protein found in cow’s milk, it’s a slow acting protein proving slow acting amino acids. According to the FDA, large amounts of this:

may be injurious to the kidneys.”

A study performed by the Chinese government also showed an increase in the risk for cancer, as well as the creation of tumors. This form of protein is a cheap source of milk protein that is often added to cheeses.

Whey Protein Concentrate: Easily digested protein sourced extracted from the cheese making process. It’s considered a slow acting protein source that provides a steady amount of amino acids.

Whey Protein Concentrate is a quality protein source, but the other 2 added sources of protein may be potentially dangerous.

The Price and Quality of Nutrilite

12 bottles purchased directly from the manufacturers costs $50.40. That amounts to a daily cost of:

$50.40/12= $4.20 for one bottle.

That’s exactly $126 for a month’s supply, which is considerably pricy. Usually higher protein beverages have a higher price. However, there’s only one quality protein source out of 2 other protein ingredients. There’s also the problem with the added cheap sweetener Fructose, which studies show can promote weight gain.

Nutrilite C-Lenium Blend

There’s an added mixture of 3 different ingredients called the C-Lenium blend, it’s intended to help give the body antioxidants. The company claims these ingredients help protect against free radicals which expose themselves during exercise. The blend consists of:

Sodium Ascorbate: This ingredient can cause abdominal pain, heartburn, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea according to WebMD. They also add:

“Most people who eat a normal diet do not need (it)”

Acerola: As mentioned before, this cherry is a source of vitamin C. WebMD lists kidney stones and gout as possible side effects.

Sodium Selenate: Studies show it’s potentially toxic in large amounts.

No studies are published by the company to give proof that this mixture is useful for preventing free radicals. They’re all known to cause serious side effects, and it’s unknown what kind of an effect it might have when combined.

Evidence for Nutrilite

Two things that need to be considered about this meal replacement:

  1. Not one single real review is available online.
  2. There’s no clinical studies, customer testimonials, or before and after photos.

It’s claimed on the official website that by using Nutrilite you’ll be able to:

power your workouts and look and feel your best”

Without any evidence provided its unknown if any of these claims are true. Looking at the ingredients, it’s clear that it’s not full of wholesome ingredients. Several of these additives are cheap alternatives that aren’t as beneficial as other ingredients.

It’s also not stated exactly what the company means when they say this product is meant for active people. This may mean only those who exercise with intensity regularly can benefit. For people simply looking to lose weight, it’s unknown if there’s a benefit.

Business

Nutrilite is the name of a serious of supplements that are owned by Amway. The official website lists their contact information:

Phone Number: (800) 253-4673

Address: 7575 Fulton Street East

Ada, MI 49355

Email: customer.service@amway.com

There have been government lawsuits and recalls:

  • Nutrilite bars were recalled due to contaminations with salmonella.
  • The FDA seized many products under the Nutrilite banner, since they contained claims they could cure diseases.
  • The company paid a $100,000 fine for not disclosing their profits, and for lying about the amount of money distributors can earn.

Customer Opinions

Finding reviews on this shake is hard due to the numerous fake reviews from distributors. On blog sites and all over forums there are people who claim it tastes great, and then they add a link to gain a commission of sales.

There were no unbiased reviews available online. It’s unknown why this is, but it’s not a good sign. Without knowing what others have experienced it’s unknown what can be expected from this brand.

The company did change their formula by adding Fructose, which raised the amount of carbohydrates and sugars. Other than that, it’s unknown what can be expected from the Nutrilite protein shake formula.

Conclusion

The highlights to consider about Nutrilite include:

  • The protein added comes from questionable sources: The only quality protein comes from Whey Protein Concentrate. Both Milk Protein Concentrate and Calcium Caseinate aren’t the best sources of protein. They both have been shown to be contaminated, as well as potentially side effect causing. There’s been special concern from many organizations over the effects it may have on damaging the kidneys, as well as causing tumors and cancer. These protein sources are often cheap to produce, that’s why they’re both added to processed foods. However, as far as a quality source of protein, only Whey is good enough to provide a healthy dose of amino acids.
  • The added sugar may promote obesity: Fructose is one of the worst sweeteners since it’s been shown to lead to cardiovascular disease, obesity, blood sugar increases, and other side effects. It’s a cheap sweetener that adds 6 grams of sugar to Nutrilite, or 12 grams if you get 2 shakes. It’s commonly found in processed foods since it’s easy to manufacture. However, when looking for a meal replacement it’s important to limit the amount of sugar you can get. The company claims they didn’t add more Stevia because it would have given it to much of a licorice taste. Unfortunately, this adds to the overall calories and carbohydrates, both things which should be reduced when you’re looking to lose weight.
  • This high amount of protein and calories is often given to people looking to gain weight: At 25 grams of protein and 190 calories per serving, it’s considerably higher than other meal replacements. A 190 calorie serving is over 2 times more than other weight loss meal shakes. The 25 grams of protein isn’t necessary either. 2 shakes will provide 50 grams which according to the Mayo Clinic, it may

     “may worsen kidney function”

Typically meal replacement shakes don’t go over 150 calories, unless they’re mass  builders made for body builders. At 2 shakes a day you’d be consuming 380 calories, an average 1 hour gym session only burns around 300 calories. The company does claim it’s specifically made for active people looking to retain lean muscle while getting extra fuel for the gym. It’s unknown what regular people can benefit from this shake, or what they mean exactly by active people.

  • The price is high: Exactly $4.20 per bottle but you can only purchase it in 12 bottle portions. From the addition of potentially harmful sweeteners, the low quality protein, and the lack of customer reviews, there’s too much to question about this product before one can safely spend $50.40 for a full case of 12. There’s also no money back guarantee, so any and all purchases are final. Since there’s no form of proof at all that the shake is of any decent quality, you won’t be able to get a return if you were to experience a lack of weight loss results.
  • Many of the ingredients can cause side effects: The thickeners added can potentially cause allergies and chocking, the sweetener may increase the risk of obesity, and the protein may contain contaminants. Overall, it’s uncertain what to expect from Nutrilite due to the lack of reviews. Not one customer mentioned it was beneficial for athletics, or that it produced weight loss. This is because there are no real reviews available online. Many of these ingredients have not been studied when combined together, so it’s unknown what may result from taking them all together.

The combination of ingredients isn’t the best for weight loss, and the company adds many cheap ingredients which may lead to side effects.  There is a lot of protein added which is beneficial, but for many who don’t exercise as much as what the company considers “active individuals”, it’s unknown what this shake may cause.

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