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I’m going to preface this by saying I actually love Shakeology.
I bought an almost-new bag from a friend of mine for about $30 (yay!) and I was surprised by how much I liked it. I mean, I started drinking it wanting to hate it because it was so expensive – but it really did what it promised. I had more energy and felt healthier overall.
With that being said, Shakeology is not affordable for us – by any stretch of the imagination. I mean, I try to imagine it and I feel like my imagination straight-up laughs at me.
Considering our food budget for three of us is about $100 a week, I would be crazy to spend more than that on a shake that doesn’t serve as a meal replacement for me (really, just a snack.) I can’t justify $4+ for a snack. Sure, I can blend it with other stuff to make it more filling, but that makes it even more expensive.
And even though I like it, I don’t believe my health is seriously in jeopardy if I skip out on it. I’d rather spend that money on good, real food that my whole family can enjoy.
That being said… I like the concept. I found when I started “for real” working out (as in, not just walking/running but also including body weight/weight lifting exercises) that I felt out of sorts without a protein shake. If I had a protein shake after my workout, I felt a lot more “with it” for the rest of the day.
Plus, if I’m going to invest 30 minutes a day in a workout, it’s a nice trade-off to be able to have a quick, healthy meal afterward 🙂
So with all this in mind, I looked high and low for an alternative. Well, not really high and low – just all over the internet and Amazon 🙂 The thing that made it hard to find an alternative is that Shakeology is a “nutritional shake”, not just a protein shake. So any old protein shake isn’t going to be the same.
What I wanted to find was one with comparable flavors, a comparable nutrient profile, and if possible “superfoods” – but I was willing to let that one slide if necessary. I tried a few that were promising, but didn’t quite meet what I wanted.
But after some trial and error, I’ve found one that I’m super excited about.
It’s called Vega Protein and Greens.
What I like:
I like that it has two servings of greens per shake and is a multi-source plant based protein. I’m not a vegetarian by any means (and never, ever will be), but I generally prefer plant based protein powder because of what I’ve read about the oxidized cholesterol in dried milk. I mean, I still enjoy whey protein for the milkshake-y taste – but for a daily-basis type protein, I’m more into plant-based.
P&G also has more protein than Shakeology, with 20 g of protein per serving. I’m especially a fan of that because when I was pregnant with A, my midwife wanted me to get 90or more grams of protein a day, baseline. A shake like this would have helped a lot (and I totally plan to use it next time.)
Which reminds me: there’s no warning on the side for pregnant or breastfeeding women to consult their doctors before use. That makes me feel a little safer about using it 😉
I also love that there’s no sugarin it. It uses stevia as a sweetener instead.
Also, my mom tried it and liked that it’s super low carb: 6 g carbs and 1 g fiber. It doesn’t mean much to me, but for people to whom it does, their eyes about bug out. So if that’s you, cool!
But the thingthat makes all this stuff even better is THE PRICE. Oh my goodness, the price. For a 25 serving tub, it’s about $49.99 full priced – but you can typically get it on Amazon for less. Like, half that price less. So it’s only about $2 or less per serving versus Shakeology’s $4.33.
If I’m being completely honest, I slightly prefer the flavor and mixability of Shakeology. This one is a little sweeter and a little less smooth when you use a shaker bottle. If I don’t blend anything with it, like a banana (or cherries – my favorite) it does taste a little “green”.
It doesn’t bother me, though, because it still definitely tastes good. Especially when I consider how much cheaper it is, but maybe that’s just me 🙂
Besides, I like my protein shakes better when they’re made into a more filling “meal replacement” type shake anyway. If you’re a shaker bottle devotee, however, you might not like it as much (but seriously – try it with frozen dark cherries. You’ll throw the blender bottle in the trash. Okay, maybe not, but it’s seriously so good.)
All in all, Vega Protein and Greens is just a great budget-friendly alternative to Shakeology.
What’s your favorite post-workout shake?