When you have diabetes, it can be challenging to find protein or meal replacement shakes that won’t cause your insulin to spike. However, you’ve recently discovered Shakeology and heard the entire sales pitch about how much it can boost your immune system and help you lose weight. Will Shakeology raise your blood sugar too high or keep it level?
Shakeology is good for diabetics because it has a Glycemic Index of 24, which is lower than most fruits & vegetables. Thus, Shakeology helps to keep your sugar levels in balance, provides a healthy amount of protein & fiber, super greens, prebiotics & probiotics, adaptogens, antioxidants, and more.
This article will give you an honest look at the ingredients in Shakeology so you can decide for yourself if it will be good for you or not.
How to Manage Diabetes
There are two types of diabetes: Type 1 diabetes, which is where insulin isn’t being produced by the pancreas, and Type 2 diabetes, where there is too much insulin production and the body becomes resistant to it. Type 1 diabetes requires insulin for life, and people with this type are born with it.
While Shakeology can be good for both types, this article will only focus on Type 2 diabetes.
Traditional Medical Advice
Managing Type 2 diabetes means keeping your blood sugar levels at acceptable levels, but there are two schools of thought about how to do this. Most health professionals agree that it’s impossible to reverse it and that managing it is the best you can do. They recommend the following plan:
- Consume lean meats and get plenty of protein.
- Eat plenty of vegetables and whole grains.
- Keep portions small, but eat two additional snacks to keep your blood sugar levels up.
- Exercise at least 30 minutes per day.
- Make sure you take your medication and keep going to doctor appointments.
Alternative Advice: Intermittent Fasting
However, Canadian doctor Jason Fung suggests a better way to manage, or even reverse, diabetes. He’s worked with several patients over the years who’ve seen successful results of his plan. He recommends intermittent fasting to control blood sugar and insulin.
Intermittent fasting involves reducing how often you eat and increasing the hours between your last meal of one day and your first meal the next day. According to Dr. Fung, insulin is the natural process your body uses to digest the food you eat whenever you eat. Whether protein or carbohydrates, any food needs to be processed into glucose so your body can use the food for energy.
Insulin is the key to open the cells to allow glucose into them for energy. When insulin production is high, that also means that your blood sugar count is high.
Dr. Fung uses intermittent fasting with his patients with diabetes as a way to completely reverse diabetes. His theory is that when you don’t eat as often, you lower your insulin and better manage your diabetes. The most common times people eat are noon and 6 PM, then fast from after their last meal until noon the next day.
What Causes Insulin Spikes?
Insulin spikes result from eating, as explained in the previous section. However, protein doesn’t have the same effect on your insulin as higher carbohydrates like starches, sugars, and grains.
When you eat a meal high in starches and sugars, your pancreas has a hard time keeping up with insulin production. When your pancreas is constantly producing insulin, diabetes Type 2 develops.
Protein can do the same thing if you consume too much of it. While it’s difficult to eat too much protein when it is in whole food, it’s easy to get too much protein when you consume it in a shake.
Carbohydrates and protein are converted to glucose, with insulin as the key, but protein does take longer for it to be converted, which means protein doesn’t cause the insulin spike that carbohydrates do.
When you eat or drink something high in sugar or even high in protein, your insulin will spike to deal with the incoming food.
Interestingly, Shakeology has helped several people with diabetes to stop and/or reduce the medications they are on.
Shakeology Ingredients–Are They Beneficial?
Most of the Shakeology ingredients are beneficial for health, such as digestive enzymes, adaptogenic herbs, and supergreens.
Adaptogens work to decrease your stress level and create a sense of calm. The herbs in this category include maca root, mushrooms, and ashwagandha root.
Digestive enzymes include probiotics that promote good gut health and a healthy immune system. These are the same probiotics that are found in yogurt and kefir drinks.
Super Greens provide several vitamins and minerals, including the B vitamins crucial for energy, brain health, and proper sleep. Kale, spinach, spirulina, and chlorella are just four of the many super greens that Shakeology provides.
Fiber is part of a balanced diet that helps you feel full and helps your body do what it needs in the digestion process. Chia seed, flaxseed, and pea fiber are added to keep you full and regular. Most traditional advice for managing diabetes says that fiber is crucial to keeping your blood sugar and insulin at healthy levels.
Shakeology Can Help You Manage Diabetes
When you use Shakeology as a meal rather than a snack, you can manage your diabetes because it can replace less healthy meals that worsen your diabetes.
When used with a well-balanced diet, Shakeology can keep your insulin manageable. Many people have reported that they could lower the amount of insulin they had to take and that they’ve lost weight using the shake.
It can work as a meal replacement shake for managing diabetes because it contains very few calories, and it is a low-glycemic food. Try using it in the morning as a breakfast-to-go or as lunch in place of fast food.
Don’t Only Rely on Meal Replacement Shakes to Manage Your Diabetes
Shakeology cannot technically be classified as a meal replacement shake because of a lack of healthy fats; many people do use it as such. Several people rely on meal replacement shakes to manage their diabetes, but while this can work, they miss out on a lot of nutrition not found in the shakes.
If you rely on meal replacement shakes to manage your diabetes without a balanced diet, you won’t have too much success. Replace perhaps one meal per day with Shakeology, then have one or two balanced meals for the remainder of the day.
When you have a balanced diet with leafy green vegetables, lean meats, and other fruits and vegetables, you can manage your diabetes better than with meal replacement shakes alone.
Shakeology is a nutrient dense shake that has a very low GI of 24 that is perfect for diabetics.
Shakeology Diabetic Reviews
Consider Theses Shakeology Reviews From People Who Were Dealing With Diabetes.
I had sky-high cholesterol, triglycerides, blood pressure, and I was most likely borderline type 2 diabetic… I’ve been drinking Shakeology for 2 years now and it really has changed my life. I drink it every single day. I immediately saw improvements in energy levels. Before Shakeology, my breakfast normally consisted of a piece of toast and a piece of fruit, or a granola bar. These things never ever filled me up, and I would sit through class tired and hungry, counting down the minutes until lunch. Now, I make my shake, take it on-the-go, drink it in class, and I am easily full until lunch. — Sara Lost 115 Pounds Using Various Programs on BOD and Shakeology
I was introduced to Shakeology through a friend of mine back in May of this year. I tried it, well all I can say about it is that it has most likely saved my life. My B/P went from 169/98 down to 106/69 in three months. Also, as a type II diabetic my blood glucose levels had come to numbers that had my doctor on the floor, he is now taking Shakeology! Everything about my health has improved by 20 to 25% overall and I feel great! – Jerry Meyerson
Yes the Shakeology price can be overwhelming at first but since I started drinking it daily the amount of money I spend on fast food has drastically decreased thus actually saving me money. I have more energy, my hair & fingernails grow at a rapid pace, my stress levels have been reduced, & I just feel GOOD…I am a Type 2 Diabetic who manages her disease with proper nutrition & exercise. My last A1C test was 5.1 this was the lowest it has ever been & was after drinking Shakeology for 8 months. I can not imagine starting my day with Shakeology ever again!!!! – Sherry Hicks
2 years and 5 months ago I was told I have type 2 diabetes and had to start taking metformin. 2000mg a day to start. The Dr said I will never stop taking metformin and may have to go on insulin injections if I dont change my habbits fast. I shared my predicament with a friend and they told me about shakeology. I admit I did start paying closer attention to what I eat but due to other physical ailments have been unable to get the proper amount of exercise. I started slow and skeptical on my shakeology adventure, 6 months after I was diagnosed. 1 drink a day and a balanced diet after a week I noticed my resting sugars were dropping, not a point or two but 10 points and I had more energy.
^months later was my second A1C check and I was back in the low 6 range the Dr asked what I was doing because this was great progress from a 7.2 just year earlier. I gave him a sample of the shakeology and told him what I had changed. He called the following week and said he wanted to send the sample for testing and that it and my slightly reduced diet were working very well to help my situation. The following checkup was 6 months later and my sugars resting and after meals was within normal ranges for a non-diabetic and he advised I could cut my medication in half. This continues today my check up 3 weeks ago had an A1C of just 5.4. My metformin is down to only 500 mg and the Dr. says if I lose 20 more pounds I can stop taking it altogether. I started shakeology at 1 drink a day for the first 3 to 4 months I have between 1 and 2 a day now and the Dr has cleared my health ailments to start light exercise and once I am under 300 lbs says I can even try P90x. I walk 2 miles a day now and feel great plus my meds ar 1/4 of what I started. Thanks beach body and shakeology. – Mike
This past July (2015), I was diagnosed with Pre-Diabetes. It was all very confusing and I wasn’t sure how to change my diet – I did NOT want to go on medication. I learned that cutting out carbohydrates as much as possible was the only way to control my blood sugar levels naturally. This is much harder than it sounds. Things I never expected were loaded with carbs. There really wasn’t a whole lot left for me to eat and I was concerned.
Interestingly, I had just started drinking Shakeology a few weeks prior. Through my research, I learned about the glycemic index and how Shakeology is very low on the scale. Finally, something “safe” for me to consume that’s delicious, packed with nutrients and low calorie, too. I made Shakeology a standard part of my day from that point on. And along with my daily shake, I began freezing Shakeology so I would have a healthy dessert as well. The only other change I made to my life was to increase my exercise. I did not need to lose weight as I am 5′ 2.5″ and 107 lbs.
So, here’s the good news: It’s working… working out more, cutting out carbs and drinking Shakeology is transforming my health and reversing my Pre-Diabetes.
Here are the details…
Background: Hemoglobin A1C is an average blood sugar reading over 3 months.
Normal Range: 4.8 – 6.0
Pre-Diabetes: 6.1 – 6.4
July 1st, I was at 6.4.
As of August 17th: 6.1
I went from being borderline Diabetic to borderline Normal and I give so much of the credit to Shakeology. Thank you for creating a product that is changing my life… – Laurie
When I first tried Shakeology, I was pretty skeptical because I’m not a “shake person” and I felt that I could get the nutrients I needed from food. Wrong.
My doctor told me I was B12 deficient, Vitamin D deficient, and on the verge of being pre-diabetic. I wasn’t even overweight, and I had just run a half-marathon! I thought I was healthy. Within a few months of drinking Shakeology, my labs came back much better! My B12 was on point and I was able to stop weekly injections. My Vitamin D was closer to normal, and my A1C (tested for diabetes) had dropped an entire point.
I have gotten compliments on my hair and skin since drinking Shakeology and fueling my body with nutrients. I’ve also been able to lose weight and keep it off by drinking this as a meal replacement. I don’t have it every day, but at lest 5 days/week. Chocolate is my favorite flavor, and I love to mix it with cold coffee and some mint extract — reminds me of a peppermint latte from Starbucks haha. – Amanda Seghetti
“Shakeology works, because I am a diabetic that was on 9 pills. But once I started drinking Shakeology, it changed my overall numbers in blood pressure, sugar levels, and cholesterol. To this date of 6 months of drinking Shakeology and working out – NO PILLS!!” –Sydney
I’m a 57 yr old insulin dependent diabetic, on insulin for 47 yrs. I’ve been using Shakeology daily since 4/8/10 and it’s a predictable meal, in that the carbs are exact. That has been a major benefit for me. Since then I’ve dropped 22 lbs, reduced my daily total insulin by nearly 40%, and am now off bp medication. Also, the only workout I’ve done is the one that comes w/ the drink mix… I call ’em Shake30 and Shake50 workouts. I haven’t worked out much at all the last six weeks, other than running a bit, but the weight continued to drop and it must be due to the Shakeology. _BH
Being DIABETIC, and HAVING KIDNEY & THYROID DISEASE, I had to do something.
Thanks to Beachbody, I have lost a total of 75lbs. and now living a more fit and healthier lifestyle. I come from a family of Type 2 Diabetics and was borderline diabetic myself, and had Kidney disease, Thyroid disease and back pains. Doing Beachbody’s workout programs and drinking SHAKEOLOGY has changed all that! My thyroid results are normal!!! My doctors are AMAZED at my results!!! My lab results are ALL NORMAL now and show that I am NO LONGER DIABETIC!!! I have so much more energy, strength and stamina than I have ever had when I was in my teens and 20s. I started at 196lbs. wearing a size 16 and am currently 125lbs. wearing a size 4!!! I have never been a size 4 before in my life!! ~Jenny, mother of 4, and works full time.