USANA Trial Diary

Have you heard of USANA? I hadn’t until about a year ago, and even then I put off trying the products until last month. For those of you who, like me, have never heard of USANA, they’re a nutritional/supplement distributor. Think super high quality vitamins, shakes, and protein bars.

With all my stress lately, I haven’t been eating that well and my healthy habits have been practically non-existent. So I decided to bite the bullet and try out the much-hyped USANA line.

You can take a health assessment through USANA, or talk to an associate to see what they recommend. I sat down with three associates I knew, and we talked through my daily habits and concerns before coming up with a list of recommended products. Top concerns for me?

  1. Nutrition – I work A LOT and don’t often have time to cook or prepare nutritious meals
  2. Energy – probably from lack of nutrition, but I run down easily
  3. Preventive care – it’s never too early to be thinking about heart, mind, or bone health (among other things!)
  4. Joint health – speaking of bone health… I have hypermobile joints, which I have definitely been too hard on over the years. I’ve noticed a creaking/grinding in my right hip during Pilates lately. It doesn’t hurt, but it sure sounds terrible.

Recommended Products (Purchased)

  • CellSentials (Multivitamin and Multi-mineral)
  • Proflavanol (antioxidant)
  • MagenCalD (magnesium + calcium + vitamin D)
  • BioMega (fish oil)

Also recommended

  • Digestion & detox series
  • Protein shakes
  • Hepasil DTX

Imagine what the medical bill for a hip replacement is.

No lie, USANA is not cheap. There was some serious sticker shock up front, which is why I only went with the most highly recommended products and put everything else on a “to try later” list for myself. My mentor looked at me when I said something about the price and said “imagine what the medical bill for a hip replacement is.”

Oh.

I can’t even imagine that, and I’ve known people my age who have been told they’ll have to get one in the next ten to fifteen years. That’s crazy!!

I also see people come into the studio for rehabilitative Pilates a lot. Watching them struggle in the beginning is hard. Hearing them talk about what they’ve lost – range of motion, ability to travel or do things they love – is harder. I don’t want to be there.

Without further ado, here’s what happened during my first month trying out my USANA products.

Day 1 | My USANA box arrives!

Each bottle is beautifully branded (sorry, have to geek out for a second). I read the instructions on each bottle, and balked again. Most of the supplements require you to take 2 pills twice daily. For the CellSentials, that’s 4 pills in the morning, 4 in the afternoon. Same with the Proflavanol and the MagneCalD. The BioMega is 2 pills once daily, but those BioMega pills are HUGE.

It took me a half a bottle of water (about 8 oz) to get the first round down. I don’t have trouble with pills, there were just so many! The pros? All of the supplements are flavorless, except the Proflavanol which is coated with a surprisingly tasty grape flavoring; and I had to drink almost an entire glass of water to take everything. Yay for getting 2 glasses of water a day here! It’s also recommended that you take the pills with food – a small problem when I’m a chronic breakfast-skipper. So another bonus for me was giving myself time to make and eat breakfast, because of course I want to maximize how effective these things are.

I didn’t expect much from the supplements right away; I figured at least a few days for my body to adjust and soak in the newfound nutrients. So I was pleasantly surprised throughout the day as I noticed my energy levels staying more even. I often “slump” around 11 am, but I didn’t have such a drastic drop in energy this time.

Day 7 | One week down.

This would be the most boring post in the world if I wrote about every single day, so here’s what I noticed over the first week:

  1. Consistently higher energy levels. I felt like I could do everything I needed to without burning out or needing a power nap. I didn’t slow down at my normal 11 am or 2 pm slumps during work, and I had no problem staying up a little later to take on a few more blog/personal tasks.
  2. Brighter skin, fewer breakouts. Probably from all the extra water I’ve been drinking, but it could also be from the extra nutrients and the antioxidants.
  3. TMI, but… way more bathroom breaks. Vitamins make you pee? Or is it the extra water? I wanted to find out, so I took another look at the label.
Break it Down

1500% daily values aren’t uncommon in the CellSentials. My initial thought was that that can’t be good for anyone – can’t you overdose on vitamins? I asked my USANA rep about it, and she answered me with a question:

Do you know where the % daily value comes from?

Uh… No, no I do not.

Percent Daily Values (%DV) were established around the 1960s, when the FDA sought a way to combat nutritional deficiencies. Soldiers were coming home with vitamin deficiency ailments like scurvy and rickets, and the government needed a solution. So the %DV was developed to advise consumers of the minimum daily values they needed to intake to stay healthy.

Sounded reasonable to me. I did some independent research (i.e. Google’d a lot) and came up with similar results. The %DV was in fact established around 1968, and has not been updated since (thanks to heavy lobbying by vitamin and supplement manufacturers).

There is such a thing as vitamin toxicity, however, which can be developed after taking large doses of A, D, C, B6, or niacin. Yikes. In some cases, toxicity just results in “flushing” – so that could explain all the bathroom breaks.

Day 21

Energy levels are still consistently higher than normal, so I know the first week wasn’t just a “placebo effect”. One weird thing I did notice was that I was way hungrier than usual. Apparently this is not a normal reaction to USANA products, so I’m still trying to figure this one out.

My first month of USANA is almost over, and it’s time to decide whether I’m going to cancel my auto-order or continue with this course of nutrition.

I honestly expected to duck out after a month. I didn’t think I could handle taking a million pills twice a day, or spending an entire week’s worth of grocery money on supplements.

I feel amazing though – like I can take on anything at any time. The amount of energy I suddenly have is incredible, and bizarre. For someone who can’t sit still, who’s constantly moving, making, doing, working, I get worn down really easily. I haven’t felt any fatigue for the last three weeks, and they were some of the toughest I’ve had this year (thanks, universe, for stockpiling deadlines just for me).

I’m sold, and 100% committed to the USANA lifestyle now. Full disclaimer, I’m also a USANA Associate now, because I really believe in these products!

If you want to learn more, check out the website or send me an email! hello@findingataraxia.com.

Cheers to a happy and healthy life, lovelies!

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