Monday, November 10, 2014

Herbalife Day One

You can read here my reasons for doing this, Today is about the first day.

Yesterday I had my first meeting with Debi Zylbermann. I drank one glass of herbal tea before setting off at 8am and walked the 40 minutes uphill to her clinic (yes she has a clinic, she doesn't sell sachets of cup-o-soup from her handbag).

On my way, with plenty of time to think, I'm already wondering why you need to buy a meal replacement powdered soup rather than make a big healthy soup yourself and have one cup for lunch every day. I'm also resenting the fact that I will have to buy milk again, having virtually given it up, in order to make the shakes, and I don't much care for chocolate or strawberry flavour, etc, etc, etc.

When I arrived everything changed (either they are very friendly or I'm very gullible) and I went with the flow. Debi's assistant (a clinic with an assistant even) gave me a 2-cup (500ml) glass of tea. Raspberry flavour. It was good,

Debi measured my height (hooray I'm just over 5'3" and 161cm - I always thought I was only 160cm and was also worried that I may have started shrinking). Then I stood on the scales with bare feet (required) and a series of numbers flashed up. I recognised the number of kg relating to my weight and Debi said she'd explain all the others when we meet on Wednesday.

She also measured my neck, bust, waist, and hips. All a good 10 inches above the measurements I remember from the Miss World contestants on the telly all those years ago (well I don't know about the neck).

I was presented with my first shake (Vanilla - phew!) and though it was quite creamy I was pleasantly surprised to find out it was made with water not milk. As I sipped Debi asked me questions about my eating habits and lifestyle. We agreed that we're not expecting spectacular results from a three day trial as I've already lost a stone (14lbs/6kg) in the past six weeks. So actually this will be a more realistic test of Herbalife than had I come to them from being totally out of control.

My questions were answered:
1. They only have one soup (tomato) and it's fortified with extra vitamins, minerals and protein. My vegetable soup at home has a lot less protein even if I do add rice and beans,

2. One of the principles is that you lose weight faster on a high-protein diet which is why it's better to make the shakes with low-fat milk or soya milk than to make them with water. We agreed on half/half water and milk.

I was given five scoops of the tea (actually a different flavour not as nice as the raspberry) and five sachets of the vanilla shake mix. This was the three day trial pack. I also had a list of instructions: One protein snack in the afternoon (Debi suggested one or two hard boiled eggs) with a piece of fruit, and a light meal at about 6pm (mostly vegetables, a serving of protein, low on carbs). The tea (500ml) was to be drunk directly before the shake (500ml) and another 1.5 litres (6 cups) of water or other herbal tea to be drunk aswell during the day. Simple.

I walked home and beyond to the supermarket to buy my 1% fat milk (I should've bought soya milk but it's three times the price), a dozen eggs, and some fruit. I arrived home just in time replace my lunch and boil the eggs for later.

I finished lunch and tried to do some work but actually, I was counting the minutes until I could eat my eggs and fruit. I got no work done. I was far too pre-occupied by the regime. I filled the time with cups of herbal tea and going to the loo.

I loved those hard boiled eggs at 3.30pm, sprinkled with a little salt. I didn't fancy an apple after that so I had a less commendable banana but so what.

Supper was a big salad of lettuce, avocado, tomato, grated cheese (the protein element) with a lemon and olive oil dressing. I also had two rice crackers with humus and a spicy aubergine pate on top. This was a bit sneaky as the rice crackers and humus were what I would have had for breakfast only on toast.

Into bed at 9pm with a good book even though I wasn't remotely tired (and I usually am). Lights out at 9.30 still not tired but too nervous to get up and work in case I ate something and resolving to get up early in the morning to work instead.

12.30 woke up to go to the loo and couldn't get back to sleep. Worrying about all the work I'd not done the previous day. Read a bit. Fell asleep again at about 3am and woke at 7 which is the usual time not early at all.

I stood on my scales this morning and had dropped 1.6lbs since yesterday! :~).

Btw, I ditched the blender and made my shake with an egg whisk - just as good, no electricity, and less washing up. Debi suggested I put ice-cubes in the shake which wouldn't work with an egg whisk but I'm happy with milk and water both from the fridge.

Today I had planned to walk to the bank (40 minutes uphill) and home again but I really didn't have the time. I also had a meeting at someone's house where I had two cups of coffee (decaf because that's what they had) with soya milk. I know it's not herbal tea but it has some protein right? I took the bus home aswell.

So now I'm finishing my tea, going to make my shake for lunch, and dreaming about my hard boiled eggs. And I'll probably have a banana too.

Tomorrow I won't be walking much as I'm in college all day - must remember to take my tea and shake with me. And on Wednesday I will walk the 40 minutes uphill to Debi's clinic (no direct bus so no choice) to find out the results of my three day trial and decide what to do next.

Jerusalem people, you can contact Debi Zylbermann on fb.


  1. Impressive level of detail there! I'm always very dubious about this sort of thing, it's good to read the experience of someone equally skeptical.

    1. I'm not skeptical in that I don't believe it will work - of course it will work but I am skeptical about how healthy these things are. I think the thing is to treat it as a short term solution to a problem and then concentrate on healthy eating once you have reached your goal.

  2. Good luck! I know my father tried it, but it didn't really work for him. I do get the idea of being a bit easier if someone helps you (as the Herbalife people do), but I still don't get why it couldn't be done without their powders really (ok, added vitamins to the soup - if really needed, one could take some vitamins on the side in the worse case, no need for powder stuff).

    1. You could totally make a healthy soup and add protein powder (and maybe take a multi-vitamin) - it's the added protein that makes the difference I believe.