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Something I constantly hear in regards to Shakeology is the cost factor! Believe me, as a former self-supported grad school student, I understand tight budgets. As a coach, my first mission is to make the world a healthier place. So if budget is truly a deciding factor, I’d rather you consume something healthier than ramen noodles (which I may or may not have lived two weeks of my life on back in the day!).
I’m going to be reviewing a few Shakeology alternatives over the next couple of days. While I firmly believe there is no equivalent for Shakeology, I’m going to give these shakes a try and let you know how my thoughts.
Before I get into my reviews, here are my standards:
- No artificial sweeteners, including aspartame and sucralose. I’m not quite sure WHY some shakes still have these, but that’s another point for another day.
- No soy protein. Soy protein has been getting a lot of heat from the science world, so I’m just preferring to avoid it.
- Must be a meal replacement shake. The macros have to compare. Meal replacement shakes are different from protein powders. With a protein powder, you’re only fueling your body with protein. Protein shakes are great for lifters after a heavy workout, but they aren’t designed to provide much more nutrition than protein.
I usually get all wild and crazy for my shakes (I love to try new flavor combinations using extracts – see my recipe guide here). For the sake of this trial, I will buy chocolate flavored powders, and prepare them with unsweetened almond milk and 1/2 frozen banana.
Alternative #1: Vega One
This one I was the most excited to try, as from what I found, the ingredients/macros/etc were the closest related to Shakeology.
For comparison, here is the label for Vegan Chocolate Shakeology:
My thoughts of the Vega One (compared to Shakeology):
- Taste – The taste was definitely grainier. Texture doesn’t typically bother me, but there were some taste differences:
- Vega One was not as sweet as Shakeology
- Vega One had a more vegetable taste than Shakeology
- The aftertaste with the Vega One lasted awhile!!!
- Cost – Surprisingly, there is not a huge difference in cost:
- Vega One is sold on Amazon.com for $54.99 for a 19 serving tub. That breaks down to $2.89 per serving
- Shakeology (if you buy with the monthly discount) comes in a 30 serving bag. That breaks down to $3.88 per serving (if you’re active duty military, your cost drops to $3.33).
- Both of these include shipping (Vega One is free with Amazon Prime).
Overall thoughts and update: I ended up purchasing a tub of the Vanilla Chai Vega One. I’m a HUGE fan of chai, and the flavor was good. However, it never had a smooth texture (it was always icy, despite using a banana and almond milk). In the end, I was never able to finish the tub.
Stay tuned for my next installment!