Isagenix Diet Review: Does It Work for Weight Loss?
The Isagenix diet is a popular meal replacement weight loss program. It’s used by customers worldwide looking to drop pounds quickly.
Although the Isagenix system claims to be a “groundbreaking path to healthy weight loss,” many health experts argue that this product doesn’t live up to the hype.
This article will review the Isagenix diet, including how it works, foods to eat, what to avoid and whether it’s a safe way to lose weight or just another fad diet.
Rating Score Breakdown
- Overall score: 2.75
- Fast weight loss: 4
- Long-term weight loss: 2
- Easy to follow: 4
- Nutrition quality: 1
BOTTOM LINE: The Isagenix diet will cause weight loss if done correctly. However, it is almost entirely made up of processed and prepackaged foods that are high in added sugar. It may be a decent short-term solution but not a good long-term investment.
Isagenix is a meal replacement weight loss system manufactured by Isagenix International, a multi-level marketing company that sells supplements and personal products.
The Isagenix diet consists of shakes, tonics, snacks and supplements sold through the Isagenix website.
Their most popular programs include a 30-day weight loss system and a nine-day weight loss system.
The 30-day starter pack is promoted as a way to:
- Lead dieters to “experience consistent weight loss”
- “Satisfy cravings for unhealthy food”
- “Support the body’s natural detoxification system”
- “Improve muscle tone”
The 30-day system includes:
- Isalean Shakes: Whey- and milk-protein-based meal replacement shakes that contain 240 calories and 24 grams of protein (along with many other ingredients).
- Ionix Supreme: A tonic that contains a blend of sweeteners, vitamins and adaptogens that is advertised to speed muscle recovery, “support clarity and focus,” and “normalize the body’s systems.”
- Cleanse for Life: A liquid blend of sweeteners, vitamins and herbs claimed to “nourish the body’s detoxification system” and “eliminate stubborn fat.”
- Isagenix Snacks: Chewable, flavored tablets made of sweeteners, milk-based protein and other ingredients.
- Natural Accelerator: Capsules that contain a blend of vitamins and herbs that are supposed to help dieters “boost metabolism and burn fat.”
- Hydrate Sticks: A powder meant to be mixed into water that contains sweeteners, electrolytes and more vitamins.
- IsaFlush: A supplement containing a form of magnesium and a blend of herbs purported to improve digestion and “support a healthy gut.”
Both systems come in dairy-free options for those with allergies or dietary restrictions.
How Does It Work?
The plan consists of shake days and cleanse days.
On shake days, dieters replace two meals per day with Isalean shakes. For the third meal, they’re encouraged to choose a “healthy” meal containing 400–600 calories.
On shake days, dieters also take Isagenix supplements (including IsaFlush and Natural Accelerator) and can choose Isagenix-approved snacks twice a day.
One or two days per week, dieters are encouraged to complete a cleanse day.
On cleanse days, dieters abstain from meals and instead consume four servings of the Cleanse for Life drink, small amounts of fruit and Isagenix-approved snacks like IsaDelight Chocolates.
The cleanse days are considered a type of intermittent fasting, an eating pattern where dieters cycle between periods of fasting (restricting calorie intake) and eating.
After dieters complete their 30-day plan, Isagenix encourages them to either start the same system over for another 30 days or try another Isagenix system like the Energy System or the Performance system.
Summary The Isagenix weight loss system is a 30-day program that consists of meal replacement shakes, supplements, tonics and snacks. It incorporates one or two “cleanse” days every week, which use fasting techniques to promote weight loss.
The biggest draw of the Isagenix diet is that it can help you lose weight quickly.
This is because the diet restricts calories and strictly controls what you consume in the form of portion-controlled shakes and snacks.
Whether you’re eating meal replacement shakes or whole foods, if you create a calorie deficit, you’re going to lose weight.
The Isagenix website cites several studies showing that the plan does indeed lead to weight loss. However, it should be noted that all of these studies were funded by Isagenix.
A study in 54 women found that those who followed the calorie-restricted Isagenix meal plan and completed one day of intermittent fasting (cleanse day) per week lost more weight and experienced greater fat loss after 8 weeks than women following a heart-healthy diet.
However, the women consuming the Isagenix meals received calorie-restricted, pre-portioned meals while the women following the heart-healthy diet did not.
Plus, the women following the Isagenix plan reported greater adherence to the diet than the women in the heart-healthy diet group ( 1 ).
Had the study been designed so that both groups received the same amount of calories in portion-controlled foods, the weight loss results would have likely been the same.
Overall, calorie restriction promotes weight loss — there’s no doubt about that ( 2 , 3 , 4 ).
There is also a good amount of research showing that intermittent fasting leads to weight loss ( 5 , 6 , 7 ).
A typical Isagenix meal plan can range from 1,200–1,500 calories on shake days and only a few hundred calories on cleanse days. So, for people going from consuming an excess of calories to a calorie-restricted plan like Isagenix, weight loss is inevitable.
Nevertheless, the same can be said for switching to a calorie-restricted, whole-foods diet.
Summary Isagenix uses calorie restriction and intermittent fasting, two weight loss interventions that have been proven effective in many studies. However, research on the program itself is limited.