OPINION: Herbalife nutrition is not nutritional, it’s another pyramid scheme

Having a balanced and nutritious diet is different for everyone, so when Herbalife says their products can help everyone lose weight, don’t believe them.


Herbalife Nutrition is a billion-dollar company which provides their products to independent distributors, or people who buy into the company, which are then sold in stores owned or operated by the individuals. Their most advertised products include meal replacement shakes and energizing teas and their products target overall weight loss. 


The company boasts themselves by sponsoring people around the world who represent their brand throughout multiple platforms, the most notable person being Portuguese soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo. Even if these athletes are the face of the company, the majority of people indulging in their products aren’t in top shape like these athletes. This promotes a negative image for those who are working out and consuming Herbalife products, yet not seeing the same results at Ronaldo.


During the pandemic, there was a TikTok floating around of people talking about the randomness of these nutrition shops popping up around their towns. In Glen Carbon, that shop is 618 Nutrition & Energy. The shop which opened in Feb. 2021, is owned by independent distributors selling Herbalife products. They market their products to everyone, and often have deals to draw new customers in. In an effort to get more customers in the door, these businesses advertise on various platforms and have the help of existing customers posting about their products on their private accounts. On 618 Nutrition & Energy’s Instagram, they post to remind their customers about emails which are waiting to be read in their inboxes.


The downsides of their products include people believing they will lose weight from drinking their meal replacement shakes alone. I think by now we all should know losing weight is a combination of eating well and exercise. According to WebMD, losing weight includes eating foods that will keep you full throughout the day — this includes protein-rich foods. Registered dietitian Erica Julson rated the Herbalife diet 1.79 out of 5 points. Some of the downsides she mentioned with their products are their shakes being heavily processed, expensive to purchase, potentially increasing hunger and their diets aren’t set up for everyone to succeed.


I’ve heard time and time again that not every diet works for every person, so I find it hard to believe these products can live up to their claims. While they may be convenient for those on the go and without much time to cook meals during the day, I don’t believe meal replacement shakes are good to use for the long run. There are plenty of other ways you can cook yourself a quick meal or meal prep in a shorter amount of time if that is an issue for you. Before you consider buying into their products, do your research on what you are putting in your body. 

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