Isagenix Diet Review

A multitude of diets is available to people who want to lose weight. Diet programs vary in terms of their structure, foods to eat and avoid, and duration. Some diets rely on whole meals whereas others on meal replacements and dietary supplements used in a specific timeframe. Isagenix belongs to the latter group. This Isagenix diet review reveals everything you need to know about this eating pattern.

What is the Isagenix diet and how does it work?

Isagenix diet is a meal replacement weight-loss program created by Isagenix International. Isagenix is a multi-level marketing company with a wide range of products under its belt. The company develops products for weight loss, skin health, and more. According to the Isagenix website, they create products that help you feel, eat, move, and look better. They also help with healthy aging.

You’ve probably come across claims of people saying they lost weight by following this diet plan alone.

This particular diet plan revolves around the use of tonics, protein shakes, supplements, and Isagenix-approved snacks you can use as a part of a 30-day weight-loss program. Isagenix claims its 30-day starter pack is formulated to produce consistent weight loss, eliminate stubborn fat, satisfy cravings for unhealthy foods, improve muscle tone, and support the body’s natural detox function through whole-body cleansing.

Isagenix diet is quite simple, actually. It is divided into a shake and cleanse days. On shake days you need to replace two meals per day with IsaLean shake. Then, you can eat a third meal of 400 to 600 calories. Just make sure you eat balanced meals. During shake days, you also need to take Isagenix supplements and eat snacks twice a day.

Basically, you should designate five to six days a week as your shake days. Only one or two days are necessary for Isagenix cleanse days during which you need to abstain from meals. Instead of food, you need to drink four servings of detox drink, eat some fruit and snacks. In a nutshell, cleanse days are dubbed as a type of intermittent fasting.

Once you’re done with the 30-day program, you can start over or opt for a different program created by this brand.

What is included in Isagenix diet?

The 30-day weight-loss pack is available for purchase on the official website. Isagenix diet consists of the following products:

  • Ionix Supreme – tonic featuring a blend of vitamins, adaptogens, and sweeteners to accelerate muscle recovery and normalize the body’s systems
  • IsaLean Shakes – milk protein and whey-protein based meal replacement shakes
  • Isagenix snacks – flavored, chewable tablets made of milk-based protein, sweeteners, among other ingredients
  • Cleanse for Life – a liquid blend of herbs, vitamins, and sweeteners to promote fat loss and detox
  • Natural Accelerator – capsules formulated to speed up or boost metabolism and promote fat burning
  • IsaFlush – a supplement that delivers a form of magnesium to support a healthy gut and promote digestion
  • Hydrate Sticks – a powder that delivers vitamins, electrolytes, and sweeteners

Foods to eat on Isagenix diet

Isagenix weight loss system revolves around meal replacement, fat burners, and other products to eliminate fat and slim down. You are required to replace most meals with shakes and other diet products. The third meal you eat should consist of 400 to 600 calories only, as seen above. While there is no specific list of foods allowed to eat on this diet, you are encouraged to make healthy choices. Keep in mind 400-600 calorie-meal isn’t a lot, so you need to opt for foods that are healthy, nutritious, and relatively low in calories.

Ideally, you should eat foods that are high in lean protein and low in carbohydrates, especially sugar.

Foods you can eat on shake days include:

  • Fruits and vegetables
  • Beef (in moderation)
  • Chicken (skinless, organic)
  • Turkey
  • Fish (coldwater)
  • Healthy fats like olive oil, coconut oil
  • Eggs
  • Herbal teas like green tea
  • Legumes
  • Whole-wheat foods
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Whole grains including quinoa and brown rice

Foods to avoid on Isagenix diet

Consumption of certain food is discouraged on Isagenix system for rapid weight loss. Ideally, you should reduce intake or completely avoid foods and beverages such as:

  • Alcohol
  • Junk food
  • Fruit juice
  • Processed meats such as cold cuts and bacon
  • Crackers
  • Potato chips
  • Margarine
  • Deep-fried foods
  • Instant foods
  • Cooking oils
  • Soda and other sugar-sweetened drinks
  • Coffee
  • White rice and other refined carbohydrates
  • Products with added sugar

Does Isagenix work for weight loss?

Many people follow Isagenix diet in order to slim down. Since all programs promise they can help you lose weight quickly, it’s impossible not to wonder whether this one can really make it happen. Actually, it can promote weight loss. Isagenix diet can produce short-term weight loss because it limits calorie intake and controls portion sizes and foods you eat.

The Nutrition Journal published a study of 54 women which revealed that those who adhered to the Isagenix meal with caloric restriction and completed one cleanse day (intermittent fasting) lost more weight than their counterparts. These subjects also lost more weight after eight weeks (1).

The very nature of this diet contributes to weight loss. The whole point of Isagenix diet is to reduce the number of calories you consume during the day. Calorie restriction supports weight loss and studies confirm it. Evidence shows very-low-calorie diets are feasible solutions for weight loss and many reduce weight gain after one year (2). In one study very low-calorie diets were associated with a significant reduction in body fat, lean mass, increased relative lean mass, and improvements in nutritional parameters (3).

Additionally, Isagenix diet encourages simple and subtle adjustments in eating pattern. Instead of fast food and other unhealthy foods, you are encouraged to eat healthful options such as fruits and vegetables. A growing body of evidence confirms that eating healthy foods such as fruits and vegetables can contribute to successful weight loss (4).

Let’s not forget about cleanse days or intermittent fasting. Intermittent fasting is a popular approach by many people who want to slim down or ensure their body functions more efficiently. Indeed, intermittent fasting can be quite beneficial. You see, intermittent fasting contributes to weight loss, but provides other benefits such as prevention of type 2 diabetes by reducing fasting insulin, visceral fat mass, and insulin resistance (56). Moreover, intermittent fasting positively influences metabolic regulation through circadian biology, modifiable behaviors like sleep, and the gut microbiome (7).

Intermittent fasting can also promote cellular repair, reduce oxidative stress and inflammation, and improve risk factors for heart disease like blood pressure, triglycerides, cholesterol levels, and inflammatory markers. Additionally, intermittent fasting has the potential to support brain health and support overall health and wellbeing (89).

Does Isagenix diet have side effects?

Even though Isagenix can help a person slim down, meal replacement diets like this one can cause several side effects. These include:

  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Headache
  • Irritability
  • Abdominal cramping or pain

These adverse reactions usually go away on their own, once the body adjusts to Isagenix diet and low-calorie meals.

Speaking of side effects, it’s also useful to mention that IsoLean product delivers 24g protein per serving. That’s a good thing, of course. Drinking up to three meal replacement shakes a day could deliver too much protein.

Keep in mind you can also have a protein-rich meal during the day. Despite the benefits of protein for weight loss and general health, too much protein could harm your kidneys, especially if you already have kidney disease. Plus, the body may convert excess protein to glucose, which could produce counterproductive results and lead to weight gain (10).

Intake of high protein levels is okay for active men and women, but not so much for persons with a sedentary lifestyle. We’re talking about the consumption of too much protein here.

Pros of Isagenix diet

Isagenix diet has several advantages that explain why many people would find it an attractive weight-loss program. These advantages include:

  • Calorie control – the biggest reason people gain weight is overeating. That means their calorie intake is too high compared to energy expenditure. Instead of calorie deficit, necessary for weight loss, they are in a calorie surplus. Controlling calorie intake is easier said than done for most men and women. Isagenix diet includes products such as shakes. The precise structure of the diet allows you to control how many calories you consume.
  • Portion control – contributes to calorie control as well. Most people eat bigger portions than their body really needs. This contributes to overeating and weight gain. Since Isagenix contains products you need to consume in specific amounts, it’s easier to control portion intake.
  • Practicality – all Isagenix products are easily accessible online and delivered to your doorstep. Plus, it’s easy to prepare Isagenix shakes and take the products. That means the diet is particularly convenient for persons with busy lifestyles.

Cons of Isagenix diet

Despite various benefits, Isagenix diet also has some advantages worth addressing. These are:

  • High in sugar – a vast majority of products in the Isagenix weight loss program features sweeteners among the first five ingredients. That means the concentration of sugar in that particular product is high. Additionally, most products contain fructose as a sweetener, which can be quite harmful if you consume too much (1112). The best way to describe the severity of this problem is to remember that on a shake day you would eat 38g (about 10 tsp) of added sugar through these products alone. That’s a lot, especially for a weight-loss diet
  • Not real food – probably the biggest shortcoming of the Isagenix diet is that it relies on meal replacement i.e. products that are heavily processed. Successful weight loss requires whole foods if you want to maintain weight loss and avoid the yo-yo effect (when all the weight loss comes back).  Although these products are abundant in vitamins, herbs, and minerals to compensate for the lack of proper food, no product can compare to real food. That’s why the Isagenix plan may not provide sustainable weight loss
  • No fiber – while meal replacement drinks are convenient and can help you achieve a short-term weight loss, they don’t deliver fiber, unlike whole foods. You need fiber for proper digestion and healthy weight loss. You see, fiber is an appetite suppressant that promotes a feeling of fullness and prevents overeating (131415)
  • Expensive and unrealistic – the weight-loss package made by this brand costs several hundreds of dollars, which means the Isagenix program isn’t suitable for everyone’s budget. While this diet can be a beneficial short-term solution, for most people it’s unrealistic to continue long-term due to the high price tag. Restrictive diets like this one also make bold claims that are difficult to achieve in real life, which can put more pressure on the person and affect their confidence

Is Isagenix actually good for you?

The truth is that Isagenix diet can be good for you. The actual answer here depends on your body goals and overall health. This diet can be convenient for people who can’t control calorie intake and need more help in that department. Of course, you also need strong willpower in order to reduce calorie intake to that extent and replace whole foods with meal replacement shakes. Isagenix diet could also be useful for persons who want to give intermittent fasting a try.

However, if you’re looking for a diet plan that you can follow for a longer period of time this may not be the best solution. Meal replacement shakes and very low-calorie meals aren’t as simple as they seem. It can be difficult to adhere to such a program for more than a few weeks. Once you start consuming more calories, you risk gaining weight.

Is Isagenix a gimmick?

Isagenix diet may help you lose a couple of pounds. However, the diet is somewhat contradictory to itself. As seen above, you are encouraged to ditch products with added sugars, yet most products made by this brand are sugar-laden. You’re also advised not to eat processed foods, but these supplements and shakes are all processed. In other words, while you can drop a dress size or two with Isagenix diet, you may benefit more from a different eating program that revolves around whole foods. Also, don’t forget that you need to exercise even if this program doesn’t state it’s necessary. Physical activity is the best way to burn fat and to make sure you’re losing weight while toning your body.

What is the most effective weight loss program?

The most effective weight loss program is the one that promotes a well-balanced diet. Instead of significant restrictions and eliminations of certain food groups, these programs promote the intake of various foods in moderation. Our body needs different nutrients to function properly. These nutrients are obtained through different foods. That’s why you shouldn’t eliminate certain food groups from your diet unless you have a health condition that requires it.

The most effective weight loss program is nutritious, healthy, and easy to include into your lifestyle. This kind of program doesn’t include intake of certain foods or products for a month, you can easily follow it for a long time. The Mediterranean diet is a good example.

In a nutshell, fad diets, programs that require the use of certain products, and very restrictive eating patterns aren’t the most effective strategies. They can promote weight loss, but the results are short-term only. Your goal is to slim down and maintain your results.

Conclusion

The Isagenix diet is a meal replacement program that promises you can slim down in 30 days. The diet has some good sides, but also many disadvantages. The biggest problem is added sugar as well as the fact this program is expensive to follow. Your weight loss journey can benefit the most from well-balanced diets and regular exercise for weight loss as core components of a healthy lifestyle. If you’re not sure where to start or what to do, you can always consult a nutritionist or dietitian who can provide nutritional counseling.

References:

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3511220/
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3442323/
  3. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28329121/
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3225890/
  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5371748/
  6. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24993615/
  7. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28715993/
  8. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/10-health-benefits-of-intermittent-fasting
  9. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/327398
  10. https://www.livestrong.com/article/373529-the-side-effects-of-isagenix-shakes/
  11. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5663253/
  12. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27001645/
  13. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31174214/
  14. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/11396693/
  15. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5331580/
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