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Not Losing Weight With Herbalife? 7 Solutions & Gimmick Analysis

Weight Loss & Diets | Written by Nathan | Updated on 10 February 2022

If you’re not losing weight with Herbalife, don’t become discouraged just yet. Whether you plateaued or didn’t see any results to begin with, we have you covered.  

Below we’ll touch on why progress stalls or ceased to exist in the first place, the best solutions to achieve that summer body you’ve been dreaming of, and if Herbalife is even worth its money or if it’s just another weight loss gimmick. 

Why You May Not Lose Weight With Herbalife

Some people find out if Herbalife tea burns belly fat early on and see dramatic weight loss within weeks of taking Herbalife supplements. While others see minimal results using the same techniques, but why is this?  

  • Starting Weight & Habits

Those who are already at a “healthy weight” generally lose weight at a slower pace or stall out more quickly because they aren’t in as much of a calorie surplus to begin with. Or in other words, they don’t eat as much as heavier set individuals. Not to mention, if you’re already at a healthy weight you will burn less calories in day-to-day activities than heavier individuals. 

Having decent eating and exercising habits can also make it seem that progress comes slower, but don’t worry, just stick to the plan, and the weight will come off in time. 

  • Eating Too Much, Too Little or Subpar Tracking

It’s common for people to underestimate or overestimate how many calories they’re eating, and it’s impossible to know how much you’re eating without some sort of tracking. 

If you eat too much, you’ll pile on pounds, and your dieting efforts will be wasted. However, if you eat too little, your body can go into “starvation mode” by holding on to everything it has. Which, in turn, can also impede weight loss. 

Be sure to calculate and track how many calories you need to begin with, and then make small adjustments as you go [1]. 

  • Sugar

The American Heart Association suggests women consume around 25 grams of sugar, while men should eat around 36 grams. To put that into perspective, a soda has around 40 grams of sugar, a cliff bar has around 22 grams, and the Formula 1 Nutritional Shake Mix, French Vanilla, has 9 grams of sugar per serving [2]. 

Sugar is calorie dense, high in glycemic index, and empty calories, so it’s no surprise it can contribute towards weight gain and an array of other health complications [3] [4]. 

  • Body Composition

If the scale still isn’t moving, you may want to have your body composition checked. Many people find that once they start working out, they lose inches but not weight and occasionally people will have lost weight, but look fatter. Or you may already be at a healthy body weight for your body type. 

  • Movement & Exercise

Movement should be a cornerstone of any weight loss regimen, but if you’ve already increased your activity levels, it could be worth increasing the intensity. 

We suggest getting around 10k steps per day and hitting the gym 3x per week minimum. Both of these can increase your calorie expenditure and prove fruitful. 

  • Underlying Medical Condition

If you think you’re doing everything right, but still can’t shed those pesky pounds, go to the doctor and get blood work done. If something is affecting your hormones, sleep, or mental state, you could have an underlying health condition that makes losing weight that much harder. 

All of these play a huge factor, but age, genetics, ethnicity and more come into play as well. Nonetheless, here’s a few solutions to kickstart Herbalife weight loss once again granted you don’t have any undiagnosed medical conditions.

7 Solutions if You’re Not Losing Weight with Herbalife

A dumbbell and lifting straps to symbolize that exercise could be a solution to weight loss on herbalife.

If you’re currently taking Herbalife supplements, tracking your calories, and your weight loss has stalled, here are some tips to help you out. It’s important to keep in mind that factors such as genetics also play a huge role in weight loss and weight gain. That may be why you’re not losing weight with Herba life. 

1. Change Your Exercise Habits

Your body builds a tolerance for exercises that you do regularly. So if you want to keep losing weight, you may need to change what types of exercises you do. Keep in mind that radically changing your workout every 3 months won’t yield the best long-term results. But there are ways to add more variety into your current routine. 

For example, if your main exercise is jogging 5 days a week, you may benefit from a beginner weight lifting routine called starting strength. Or if you lift weights and run already, try mixing in some HIIT workouts like insanity.

Perhaps you’re an avid walker, and you’ve plateaued even though you walk 5 miles every day. It could help you to add some bodyweight exercises to build more muscle.

2. Try a new type of food tracking

If you’re not losing weight with Herbalife, consider counting your macros instead of calories. 

This one is a little tricky because there’s still some debate about which is more effective: pure calorie counting or focusing on macros (protein, fat, and carbs). However, since you’ve tried counting calories, it may help to switch it up and count macros. Or if you’re a decent cook, you can even learn how to duplicate popular diets such as Medifast or Optavia. 

No matter the case, you may not be getting enough protein in your diet even if you hit your calorie targets every single day. Protein is hard for your body to digest, so it works longer to break it down and use. That means that protein keeps you feeling fuller, longer. Plus it helps build muscle more quickly. Win-win. 

3. Eat Less Sugar. Sweet tooth!

All calories are not equal! If you’re eating a lot of refined sugars, it will be nearly impossible for you to lose weight. 

  • A good trick is not to deprive yourself completely of the food that you crave. Instead, learn how to listen to your body when the craving stops. That can happen in as few as 1-3 bites of something. 
  • After the craving is gone, stop eating! Many of us continue eating high-calorie food long after the craving has been satisfied because it’s in front of us. 
  • Another trick is to eat something healthy first to help fill up part of your stomach. That way, you won’t be as tempted to eat a whole meal’s worth of M&M’s. 

4. Get an app that lets you track your food intake by personalized goals. 

Some apps have it all planned out for you where they tell you how they would lose weight. Others let you personalize your journey. You’re still held accountable, but it’s an approach that’s tailored to your specific life and goals. 

For example, instead of only tracking calories, you can track your salt intake as well. Calorie counting alone may not be enough. Too much salt can cause high blood pressure, hypertension, and can cause you to hold on to your fat. It’s one of those things that very few people are aware of, but it can have a noticeable effect on your weight loss progress. 

5. Pro tip: If you don’t have time to track your calories, at least take photos of everything you eat. 

Then, review them at the end of the day. Even if you don’t know the exact number of calories, the amount of unhealthy food you eat (or alcoholic drinks you have) may surprise you. And you’ll have a visual record to make it easier for you to stay accountable to yourself and goals. 

6. Get yourself an accountability partner. 

An accountability partner is someone who is on the same journey as you and will help you stay focused on your goals. Plus, it’s a flexible solution to fit your life. You can both go to the gym at the same time if you’re local, but even sending someone a message that you went to the gym can help. You’ll have someone there to cheer you on and help push you through the times you want to quit. 

7. Learn how to cook and meal prep your healthy options for the week. 

If you have food ready to go, when those hunger pangs hit, you won’t have time to think. Thinking about what you want to eat when you’re very hungry can be a recipe for disaster. People tend to grab what’s nearest and easiest. If those are healthy options, then you’re setting yourself up for success (and avoiding a case of the “hangries”). 

These are all great tips to keep in mind when you hit a weight loss plateau on any diet or weight loss plan. 

What to Do When You Hit a Weight Loss Plateau

A person is measuring themselves on a scale with a measuring tape in the foreground to symbolize overcoming a sticking point.

So what do you do when you hit a plateau? If you feel like you’ve tried everything, but you’re not losing weight or inches anymore, you may have hit a weight loss plateau. Here are a few proven options to get you over it – no matter which weight loss method you use. 

  • Consult with a nutritionist. They’ll give you advice on how to add variety to your eating habits so that you continue to lose weight. They can also tell you whether or not it’s safe to reduce your calories even further. Remember that eating too few calories is as bad for weight loss as eating too many. 
  • Invest in a personal trainer. Even if you only do this once a month or every few months, having another set of eyes look over your workout routine will help you see the weak points in your training. Plus, they can suggest new and different ways to work out so that your muscles don’t have time to adapt to any one exercise. 
  • Add more movement throughout the day. Take a 5-minute walk around your office every hour or so. Do some low-key seated or standing yoga stretches at your desk. There are a lot of excellent free YouTube videos to get you started. 
  • Track your progress with your clothes or a tape measure instead of a scale. You may lose inches before you lose pounds when you’re building muscle. If your clothes fit you better (or have become too loose), that’s a huge win. Even if the scale stays in exactly the same place! 

Hitting a weight-loss plateau is a very common part of the journey – no matter which program you’re on. So why do some people blame Herba life when their weight loss stalls? Is it a gimmick after all? 

Gimmick Analysis of the Herbalife Weight Loss Program

If you stopped losing weight on Herbalife, you may be wondering if that sells representative sold you junk or if it’s a scheme of sorts. To be fair, we don’t blame you.

The truth is, Herbalife has withstood lawsuits that their products don’t have special nutritional properties like they claim, vague product labels, and others claiming their pyramid-like structure is illegal so it’s no wonder people question their legitimacy. 

Let’s break down each.

  • Pyramid Structure (Multi-level Marketing)

From the outside, Herbalife may seem like a pyramid scheme (illegal) but the truth is the SEC has very strict rules surrounding multi-level marketing (legal) business models and Herbalife has stood the test of time.

However, the whole concept of individual representatives marketing weight loss products gives off a vibe that they’re just wanting to make a dime off of you and this is somewhat true. 

Although most representatives have honest intentions, they’re financially incentivized to get people to buy the products and lose weight. In the grand scheme of things, this can be viewed as a pro or a con to their multi-level marketing “scheme”. The downside is you have untrained individuals peddling supplements and weight loss products.

But on the plus side you have a community of newfound fitness enthusiast who are incentivized to help you lose weight and see results. It’s not always black and white.

  • Nutritional Value

There’s surely healthier supplements out there, but Herbalife has the community aspect going for it and it’s by far from the worst product either. One of the biggest downsides of Herbalife supplements is the costs and vague nutritional labels.

But will the supplements help you lose weight, what’re the better alternatives, and why does it work for some people? 

The supplements can help you lose weight, but most people who see results are doing other things to facilitate their weight loss. They started seriously counting their calories, working out more often, and avoiding high-calorie-low-nutrient foods such as most desserts and alcohol. That would help explain why Herbalife can help people lose weight, and be a testament that it’s not the supplements itself. If you just want a solid product (don’t want to be a representative and don’t care for the community aspect etc.), we suggest looking over the major brands on the market because it’s no surprise you can find cheaper protein powder, teas, pre-workouts and really anything else Herbalife sells. Whether it’s Herbalife or another brand, reducing your calories and moving more will generally bring solid results. 

Consider this, if someone has been used to drinking meal a 150 calorie meal replacement shake for 2 of their 3 meals, it’s nearly impossible to stick to the same calorie count once they stop drinking the shakes. It’s no wonder people gain weight after quitting Herbalife and the plateau’s are apart of any weight loss journey. 

That’s why it gives so many people a hardcore “gimicky” feeling. Herba Life shakes and supplements may be a fast way for some people to lose weight, but it may not be sustainable over the long term. Safe, effective long-term changes and weight loss tend to happen more slowly than a lot of people would like. Once you build healthy eating habits, it’s much easier to continue with them because you built a healthier lifestyle. 

Other Effective Weight Loss Options

A man drinking water after exercising.

  • Drinking More Water

Another simple change that people often overlook is your water intake. It’s claimed that as many as 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated [8]. That means that when you do drink water, your body is going to store it. 

It doesn’t know when you’re going to give it more water, and it needs a supply to keep you alive. It may sound counter-intuitive to drink more water to lose water weight, but it’s true. Drinking more water can not only help you lose weight, it’s better for your skin, organs, and can even reduce stress [9].  

Drinking less water = more water retention = more water weight. 

  • Intermittent Fasting

An option that has been growing in popularity in the past few years is intermittent fasting. The efficacy of intermittent fasting has been mixed, but some claim to have sustained weight loss using this method [6]. 

One of the main benefits is its flexibility. It’s free to start, and you can fast for 12-20 hours depending on your goals and your tolerance. The most popular fasting schedule is the 16/8. 

You limit your eating to an 8 hour window at any time during the day. Some people prefer to give up dinner while others find it easier to skip breakfast. Either way, you’re fasting for roughly 16 hours. 

Of course, healthy eating habits are still important for intermittent fasting to help with weight loss. And there’s a lot of debate about whether super low-calorie foods such as coffee will break your fast or not. If you drink it black, it has fewer than 5 calories. Many fasters claim that drinking one cup of black coffee is fine and won’t derail your weight-loss efforts. 

  • Other Meal Replacement Shakes

There are many meal replacement shakes to choose from. Here are a few things to keep in mind if you’re planning on replacing your regular meals with shakes. High protein and fiber content will keep you feeling fuller, longer [7]. Since you’re replacing food with something else, you want to make sure that there is a good range (and amount) of vitamins in the shake you choose. 

Keep in mind that some of these options can get very expensive and that the cost does not always indicate the best quality. If you do meal replacement shakes for two meals instead of one, you may have a hard time keeping the weight off when you stop. That’s because you’ll still have to spread your calories more evenly across your three meals once you go back to eating food for each meal. 

  • A Professionally Designed Nutrition Plan

This one is not the cheapest, but if you have the funds to invest in a nutrition plan from an expert, you’ll be setting yourself up very well. That’s because the plan will be tailored to your weight loss goals, lifestyle, and eating habits. Plus, you won’t have to plan anything. It’ll all be done for you. 

You might be surprised by how many calories you actually should be eating. For a highly active person, 1,400 calories a day may not be enough for maintenance. You could be putting your body into starvation mode and not even know it. 

Conclusion

Overall, it’s common for people to hit a plateau or not lose weight on Herbalife, but it’s not necessarily a gimmick either. Herbalife can show people how to stop eating junk food and sugar, replace unhealthy meals with healthy ones, as well as foster a weight loss community that many people thrive on.

If you’re not losing weight on Herbalife, simply changing the way you eat or the way you workout can help get you back on track. If you’re still plateauing after trying the tips above, you can always try other diets like noom diet, which shows you exactly what types of food you can eat. 

Remember,  a “one size fits all” approach to weight loss doesn’t work and the key is persistent effort over time. That’s why it’s so important to calculate your calorie needs and include your daily activity levels (check reference 9 below for a weight loss and calorie needs calculator) [9].  

Again, weight loss is a deeply personal and different journey for each individual. So find the type of weight loss program that you enjoy the most, can stick to for a long time, and give yourself freedom and forgiveness on those days that you don’t stay on track. Losing weight and keeping it off is a lifestyle practice not a sprint. 

References

[1] Harvard Health. 2021. Calorie counting made easy – Harvard Health. Retrieved 30 December 2021, from https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/calorie-counting-made-easy

[2] www.heart.org. 2021. How Too Much Added Sugar Affects Your Health Infographic. Retrieved 30 December 2021, from https://www.heart.org/en/healthy-living/healthy-eating/eat-smart/sugar/how-too-much-added-sugar-affects-your-health-infographic

[3] Harvard Health. 2021. The sweet danger of sugar – Harvard Health. Retrieved 30 December 2021, from https://www.health.harvard.edu/heart-health/the-sweet-danger-of-sugar/ 

[4] Poitras, C. (2018). Perched on a Plateau: Why Today’s Rapid Weight Loss Diets Always Seem to Fail – UConn Today. UConn Today. (2018). Retrieved 30 December 2021, from https://today.uconn.edu/2018/05/perched-plateau-todays-rapid-weight-loss-diets-always-seem-fail/ 

[5] Rynders, C. A., Thomas, E. A., Zaman, A., Pan, Z., Catenacci, V. A., & Melanson, E. L. (2019). Effectiveness of Intermittent Fasting and Time-Restricted Feeding Compared to Continuous Energy Restriction for Weight Loss. Nutrients11(10), 2442. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11102442

[6] Vander Wal, J. S., Marth, J. M., Khosla, P., Jen, K. L., & Dhurandhar, N. V. (2005). Short-term effect of eggs on satiety in overweight and obese subjects. Journal of the American College of Nutrition24(6), 510–515. https://doi.org/10.1080/07315724.2005.10719497

[7] Taylor K, Jones EB. Adult Dehydration. [Updated 2021 Oct 10]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2021 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK555956/

[8] Yes, drinking more water may help you lose weight. The Hub. (2020). Retrieved 30 December 2021, from https://hub.jhu.edu/at-work/2020/01/15/focus-on-wellness-drinking-more-water/

[9] Body Weight Planner | NIDDK. Niddk.nih.gov. (2021). Retrieved 30 December 2021, from https://www.niddk.nih.gov/bwp

About the Author

Nathan

Nathan has been a fitness enthusiast for the past 12 years and jumps between several types of training such as bodybuilding, powerlifting, cycling, gymnastics, and backcountry hiking. Due to the varying caloric needs of numerous sports, he has cycled between all types of diets and currently eats a whole food diet. In addition, Nathan lives with several injuries such as hip impingement, spondylolisthesis, and scoliosis, so he underwent self-rehabilitation and no longer lives with debilitating pain.