Protein shakes, detox teas, and metabolism boosters are some of the most popular supplements on the market.
Though you can purchase these products from any supplement store, many people buy from multilevel marketing (MLM) companies.
Arbonne is one of the most popular MLM companies that sell nutritional supplements. The company also promotes a diet program called 30 Days to Healthy Living. However, you may wonder whether the diet works and whether it’s something you should try.
This article reviews Arbonne’s 30 Days to Healthy Living program, including its benefits, its downsides, and whether it aids weight loss.
diet review scorecard
- Overall score: 1.83
- Weight loss: 2
- Healthy eating: 1.5
- Sustainability: 1.25
- Whole body health: 3.25
- Nutrition quality: 1
- Evidence-based: 2
BOTTOM LINE: Arbonne’s 30 Days to Healthy Living program promotes some healthy habits but relies on unqualified consultants and dangerous dietary practices. Plus, its high cost, food restrictions, and reliance on supplements make it necessary to avoid.
- Reviewers like the way the supplements taste.
- The program is convenient and easy to follow.
- The program promotes holistic health practices such as eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, practicing mindfulness, and getting quality sleep.
- The diet promotes unnecessary food restrictions.
- You must rely on Arbonne’s expensive products to follow the diet.
- The diet is only 30 days long, but you’ll likely have to continue it in order to maintain results.
- The company makes numerous unsupported health claims.
- Most consultants aren’t paid a livable wage — this calls Arbonne’s business ethics into question.
Arbonne is an MLM company that claims to strive to be the best and healthiest company in the world. It sells a variety of products, including vegan skin care products and nutritional supplements.
You can choose from dozens of products on its website, but the most popular program Arbonne offers is the 30 Days to Healthy Living program. Notably, the company refers to it as a “reset” after a person has engaged in unhealthy lifestyle habits.
Arbonne claims that when you experience digestive issues, low energy levels, or other general health concerns, it’s a sign that your body is not functioning as it usually would and needs to be reset.
The diet involves removing foods that you may be sensitive to in order to revitalize your body from the inside out.
To follow the diet and purchase products, you must work with an independent consultant — a person who sells and speaks on behalf of Arbonne products and earns a profit from each product they sell and each person they recruit.
Despite selling nutritional supplements and providing diet recommendations, consultants are not required to have any formal education in any nutrition or health-related field.
According to the 30 Days to Healthy Living guide on the company’s website, there are six steps you must follow:
Step 1: Remove trigger foods
The first step is to remove any foods that Arbonne claims are not beneficial to your well-being. Foods like alcohol, coffee, dairy, wheat, gluten, soy (except organic, non-GMO tempeh), and artificial sweeteners are to be avoided for at least 30 days.
Still, the company does not provide evidence or rationale for these claims.
Considering that this practice is an elimination diet, it should be pursued only under the guidance of a qualified health professional.
Step 2: Add healthy foods
Next, Arbonne suggests incorporating healthy foods into the diet, though it doesn’t provide a specific meal plan. Instead, the company provides general tips, such as:
- Eat every 4 hours to maintain energy levels.
- Have one healthy, well-balanced meal that includes mostly vegetables, lean protein, complex carbs, and healthy fats.
- Drink mostly water. The company suggests drinking at least half your body weight in ounces each day. For example, if you weigh 150 pounds (68 kg), you would drink 75 fluid ounces (2.2 L) of water per day.
- Add healthy snacks if you’re hungry.
- Replace two meals with Arbonne shakes.
The diet encourages followers to replace two meals per day with an Arbonne shake “meal,” which includes:
- 2 scoops of Arbonne Essentials protein shake
- 1–2 cups (236–473 mL) of water or nondairy, non-soy milk
- 1/3 cup (around 10 grams) of leafy greens or 1 scoop (7 grams) of Arbonne BeWell Superfood Greens powder
- 1/4 cup (around 40 grams) of fruit
- 1 tablespoon (16 grams) of peanut butter or half an avocado
In addition to these tips and foods, Arbonne recommends four “core” supplements to support your health, along with two customizable options. Keep in mind that these supplements are expensive and feature numerous suspect health claims.
The four “core” supplements are:
- FeelFit Pea Protein Shake: a vegan protein powder that provides 20 grams of protein per 2 scoops (40 grams)
- GutHealth Digestion and Microbiome Support: a supplement containing probiotics, prebiotics, and digestive enzymes
- CleanTox Herbal Detox Tea: an herbal tea that the company claims will support the liver and kidneys; the company suggests having two per day
- Energy Fizz Sticks: a powder containing B vitamins, ginseng, guarana, and green tea that the company claims will support energy
In addition, you must select two additional supplements to take:
- CleanTox Gentle Cleanse: an aloe supplement that the company claims will detoxify your body by eliminating “toxins” from your system
- BeWell Superfood Greens: a powder mix containing 36 fruits and vegetables and prebiotics
- GutHealth Prebiotic Fiber: a supplement containing 12 grams of soluble fiber and a prebiotic known as inulin
- InnerCalm Adaptogenic Stress Powder: a powder containing Ashwagandha and saffron to promote calmness
Useful supplement shopping guides
Check out these two articles to help make supplement shopping a breeze:
Step 3: Get moving
Arbonne recommends daily physical activity to maintain a healthy body weight, heart health, physical fitness, and self-confidence.
Though it doesn’t provide a detailed program, the company recommends moving more than you did the day before, joining a gym, and/or taking up a new hobby, such as tennis or dancing.
Step 4: Be mindful and manage stress
Arbonne strongly recommends stress-reducing activities, such as meditation, hiking, or reaching out to friends and family. The company suggests that lowering your stress levels will make you less likely to overeat high calorie and high fat foods, which can lead to excess weight gain.
Step 5: Get enough sleep
Arbonne recommends resting more often and sleeping at least 8 hours per night to prevent weight gain, improve your immune system, and lower your risk of chronic disease.
The company provides general recommendations, such as using essential oils, putting electronics away before bedtime, and practicing a bedtime ritual.
Step 6: Track your goals
Arbonne generally recommends tracking your goals and progress to help you notice changes in your body, things that you could improve on, and foods that are bothersome to you.
Optional step 7: Prepare for life after the 30 days
After completing the 30 days, Arbonne recommends that you continue using all Arbonne products, meaning the protein shake, fizz sticks, digestive support, and so forth.
Further, you should work closely with your independent consultant, the person you buy your products and program from, to identify foods you should reintroduce or exclude from your diet.
Interestingly, Arbonne suggests that you will need to do the 30 Days to Healthy Living program more than once, which calls into question whether the program actually works and whether it’s intended to make people become reliant on the company’s products.
Though Arbonne doesn’t specify who the diet is for, the company’s main webpage claims it’s for people who are looking to improve their health and energy levels and potentially lose weight or “manage” their weight.
Arbonne suggests that the diet can help “reset” your body and identify foods that “may not be serving your body well.”
Though this may sound tempting for folks with digestive issues, the diet isn’t a proper elimination diet. If you’re looking to understand potential trigger foods, it’s better to work with a qualified healthcare professional who can learn more about your health background.
The Arbonne diet has a few glaring downsides. It excludes large groups of foods, which means it may not provide adequate nutrition for some people and may be triggering for people with a history of disordered eating.
Arbonne makes a legal statement that’s common for diet and health companies, saying that anyone with an underlying medical condition such as diabetes or heart disease, anyone who takes medications, and anyone who is pregnant or nursing should consult a healthcare professional before trying the diet.
Considering that the only guidance you receive while following the Arbonne program is from unqualified consultants, it’s important not to follow this diet without getting clearance from a healthcare professional.
It’s likely that a healthcare professional will not endorse this diet, and they may suggest better, more sustainable options.
Arbonne specifically states that the 30 Days to Healthy Living program is not a weight loss program, though you will likely lose weight on the diet.
The diet focuses on eating mostly vegetables, lean proteins, complex carbs, and healthy fats, and it encourages other healthy lifestyle practices, such as daily exercise, mindfulness, and good sleep. All of these are linked to better health and weight management (
Though the diet emphasizes eliminating large groups of foods, such as dairy, wheat, gluten, and soy, there’s little research to support doing so for weight loss. In fact, consuming foods like dairy, soy, and whole grains may support weight loss (
Additionally, while the diet recommends nine supplements, there’s no evidence that any of the company’s products lead to weight loss or increase your metabolism. However, certain products that are high in fiber and protein may help manage your hunger levels.
What’s more, replacing a meal with an Arbonne shake is likely to slash your calorie intake. The shake Arbonne recommends provides only 323 calories, assuming you make it with frozen blackberries, spinach, almond milk, peanut butter, and vanilla protein powder (
Replacing a meal with this shake does not provide enough calories for most people and would likely put them at a calorie deficit — especially when paired with increased physical activity — and ultimately lead to weight loss.
There are a number of potential benefits to Arbonne’s 30 Days to Healthy Living program.
Focus on lifestyle changes
Unlike many other diets, Arbonne’s 30 Days to Healthy Living program encourages numerous lifestyle changes to improve your health.
Along with eating a diet of whole, minimally processed foods, Arbonne encourages its followers to exercise regularly, get adequate sleep, manage stress, and practice mindfulness.
Arbonne recommends focusing on the nutrient quality of food and eating mindfully rather than counting calories.
Furthermore, the program encourages followers to listen to their hunger cues and eat approved foods whenever they want.
Still, many argue that this diet goes against mindful eating, as it encourages a lengthy list of food restrictions. Restricting foods can increase anxiety surrounding food choices and goes against the premise of listening to your body’s needs (
Whole, unprocessed foods
Numerous studies have shown positive benefits of limiting highly processed foods high in calories, fat, and sugar, including reducing the risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, inflammation, and premature death (
As such, any diet that encourages eating whole, minimally processed foods will likely benefit your health. However, the use of many processed supplements contradicts Arbonne’s “unprocessed” philosophy.
Despite claiming to encourage a long-term healthy lifestyle, Arbonne has been widely criticized for its long list of restrictions and claims that lack scientific merit.
Arbonne claims alcohol, coffee, dairy, wheat, gluten, soy, and artificial sweeteners are foods that are “not beneficial for overall wellbeing.”
While excessive alcohol intake is harmful and people with allergies, intolerances, and autoimmune or gastrointestinal conditions may need to eliminate certain foods, little evidence shows that eliminating these foods improves overall health in all people (
The program also improperly carries out an elimination diet, relying on unqualified consultants to determine which foods you may be sensitive to. Eliminating large groups of foods all at once makes it difficult to know which foods — if any — are truly causing issues for you.
In many cases, simply adopting healthier eating patterns can lead to improved energy and health, which can be misconstrued as evidence of a food sensitivity or intolerance that may not exist.
Proper elimination diets remove one food at a time based on your specific condition and involve weeks to months of trial and error. In all cases, this should be done under medical supervision (
Expensive and inaccessible
Arbonne is an MLM company that requires customers to pay a membership fee for discounted products or higher prices without a membership. However, even with the discounted prices, Arbonne’s products are quite expensive.
The company offers a package deal that costs $304.80 with the preferred client discount or $508 without a discount. This package includes:
- two packs of FeelFit protein powders
- two boxes of CleanTox teas
- one GutHealth Digestion and Microbiome Support
- two EnergyFizz stick boxes
- two of the four customizable supplements (CleanTox Gentle Cleanse, GutHealth Probiotic Fiber, BeWell Superfood Greens, or InnerCalm Adaptogenic Stress Powder)
Considering that most items last only 30 or fewer days and you’re expected to buy the products beyond the 30-day diet, this program’s cost makes it inaccessible for those with lower incomes.
Given that none of these products are necessary to be healthy, you’re better off spending your money on whole, nutrient-dense foods and other healthy lifestyle practices.
Faulty science claims
Though the general basis of the program is sound in that it encourages healthy habits, such as eating nutritious foods, exercising, and sleeping more, Arbonne makes bold claims about its products that lack scientific evidence.
For example, its CleanTox Gentle Cleanse product claims to detoxify your body by “cleansing your system” using ingredients like aloe, ginger, and choline. However, there’s no clear evidence that any of these ingredients detoxes your body any more than your body naturally would when following a healthy diet (
Further, while the GutHealth Digestion and Microbiome support supplement does contain ingredients that support gut health — such as prebiotics and probiotics — it claims the use of digestive enzymes helps ensure that your digestive system is working properly.
In most healthy individuals, the digestive system produces enough digestive enzymes and does not need a supplement like this to work properly.
Another example is the Metabolism Support supplement (offered outside the 30 Days to Healthy Living program), which claims to “rev” your metabolism. Though Arbonne claims a clinical study supported the use of one of its ingredients — green coffee bean extract — in weight management, it fails to directly identify the study.
Even then, claiming that the supplement will increase your metabolism without scientific research on the product in question is misleading. Though some people may claim that the products help, most health improvements likely come from an overall healthier lifestyle.
MLM companies like Arbonne have fallen under tremendous scrutiny for ethical concerns regarding how they compensate independent consultants, the consultants’ lack of qualifications, and the incentivization to sell products.
Independent consultants are not required to have any formal education in nutrition or health. In fact, the only requirement is that they be 18 years of age and pay the initial $59.00 registration fee.
Furthermore, because profits are tethered directly to sales, along with recruiting new consultants to join the brand, independent consultants are constantly incentivized to push products onto consumers.
According to the company’s 2021 income disclosure statement, 56% of consultants made an average annual income of $206, while 97% of sellers made less than $13,785 — not including the cost of products, hosting parties, and membership fees (32).
Though sellers have the potential to earn more based on sales, many experts argue that the design of MLM companies oversaturates the market, making it nearly impossible for independent consultants to make a livable income This is ultimately an unethical practice (
As a result, you may wish to purchase your nutritional supplements from non-MLM companies that are required to pay their employees a guaranteed wage.
Though Arbonne does not give a specific meal plan, it provides a document with general outlines of what to eat. It’s based on having 3–4 meals and snacks spaced out every 4 hours. Here’s one example:
- Meal/snack #1 (7:00 a.m.): meal replacement shake
- Meal/snack #2 (11:00 a.m.): kale salad bowl with tahini
- Meal/snack #3 (3:00 p.m.): basic shake or meal replacement shake
- Meal/snack #4 (7:00 p.m.): turkey burger with sauteed mushrooms and spinach
It’s expected that you replace at least one meal per day — ideally two — with an Arbonne protein shake that includes a small amount of nondairy, non-soy milk; fruit; vegetables; and healthy fat. Additionally, all supplements should be taken as directed on the package.
At the time of this review, Arbonne International, Inc., has an average rating of 3.9 out of 5 from 179 reviews on Trustpilot. Interestingly, there appears to be a large contrast in the reviews, with 1/5 and 5/5 being the two most common ratings.
According to the Better Business Bureau, Arbonne has a rating of 2.27/5 from 56 customer reviews.
Some positive reviews mention the great taste of the FeelFit protein powder, as well as other subjective benefits such as feeling more energized and healthier and having clearer skin. However, there have been reports that consultants are providing most of the positive reviews.
Negative reviews mostly focus on the MLM structure of the company, stating that the company’s profits come from taking advantage of the consultants rather than from the products.
Others complain about the “pushy” sales approach from consultants, who rely on sales to make money. Numerous reviews mention situations in which Arbonne consultants were unprofessional and/or promoted inaccurate nutrition and health information on social media.
Some reviewers mention that they were overcharged and had trouble contacting customer service, and others complain that Arbonne’s products are overpriced and provide little benefit.
Additionally, Arbonne has been involved in a few lawsuits. One class-action lawsuit filed in 2017 claimed that Arbonne’s MLM structure was unethical and failed to provide consultants with a reasonable opportunity for financial success. However, it was dismissed in March 2018 (34).
In 2020, the FTC sent a warning letter to Arbonne in response to numerous consultants promoting false or misleading information about COVID-19 and income claims. The letter emphasized that Arbonne needed to provide better oversight for its consultants (35).
Finally, in 2008, Arbonne was required to pay $30,000 to settle a discrimination lawsuit after the company refused to hire a person based on their disability, deafness (36).
To start the Arbonne 30 Days to Healthy Living program, you’ll need to create a free account on the company’s website. In the process, you can also choose to become a Preferred Client, which gives you 20% off all products. However, it costs $29 per year to be a member.
Arbonne previously offered a starter kit, but this kit is no longer on the website. The company doesn’t specify, in the FAQ section or elsewhere, whether the kit is available. You may opt to purchase one of the products under the 30 Days to Healthy Living category instead.
When you begin to check out, a pop-up encouraging you to add a Preferred Client membership or become a consultant will pop up, but you can always choose to continue without a discount.
When you sign up, you can also check a box to indicate whether you’d like to receive communication from an Independent Consultant.
The company recommends that customers use the autoship program, which offers automatic payments and shipments of the product every 30, 60, 90, or 180 days. You can discontinue the program whenever you want.
How much weight can you lose with Arbonne in 30 days?
Arbonne does not promise that you will lose a certain amount of weight as a customer or on its 30 Days to Healthy Living program.
That said, if you consume the low calorie shakes twice per day and consume only one other meal, per the company’s recommendation, it’s likely that you’ll reach a calorie deficit, which could result in weight loss.
However, some of the shakes have just 160 calories per serving. Consuming two of these shakes in conjunction with just one additional meal would likely total too few calories per day for an average adult.
Is Arbonne a scheme?
Arbonne is an MLM company that operates in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and a number of other countries. While MLM schemes aren’t illegal, they’re often predatory. Arbonne is no exception, as there are concerns that the company uses misleading promises and sales tactics.
In fact, it’s been found that 96% of Arbonne consultants — even those who are higher ranked as regional vice presidents — do not make a livable wage. Most Arbonne consultants make less than $200 per year. These statistics call the company’s business practices into question (32).
What can you not eat on Arbonne 30-day cleanse?
While following Arbonne’s 30 Days to Healthy Living, you are not allowed to eat or drink alcohol, coffee, dairy, wheat, gluten, soy (except organic, non-GMO tempeh), or artificial sweeteners.
Arbonne’s 30 Days to Healthy Living program has grown in popularity as a lifestyle diet to help people improve their health. However, it has also received tremendous scrutiny for its faulty claims and unethical practices.
The diet promotes many food restrictions and supplements that are unnecessary, not backed by science, and expensive.
What’s more, the company relies on unqualified consultants to provide nutritional and health guidance and fails to pay them fair compensation, which raises numerous ethical concerns.
One redeeming quality of the diet is that it promotes eating nutrient-dense foods, exercising daily, and many other healthy behaviors. Together, these behaviors may help you lose weight, especially if you’re new to this type of lifestyle.
Although the diet has some positive qualities, most of the benefits are the result of adopting healthier lifestyle changes — not the diet itself or the products required. If you’re looking to improve your health, you’re better off avoiding this program.