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Why “Getting Sparked Up” With AdvoCare Is Not Healthy
Turn on 1-click ordering. You have one body. Tamar on December 17, at For additional information about a product, please contact the manufacturer. In , AdvoCare secured the naming rights of a professional sports practice facility located at The Greenbrier in West Virginia.

What is Advocare Slim?

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Is Advocare actually healthy? As far as Advocare products go, I certainly could have highlighted another of their products with many more toxic ingredients and health concerns than Spark. As a licensed health care provider and certified nutritionist, I believe that it would be unethical and a major conflict of interest for me to sell MLM nutrition products.

I still like you as a person! But first and foremost, I am in the business of helping people heal their bodies through the use of real food. I do use nutritional and herbal supplements in my practice to assist clients in bringing balance back to the body, but I do not align myself with any particular company and I only recommend professional-grade products.

I do not make money off of any of the supplement recommendations that I make to clients. Listen up because that is sound advice for people everywhere! Nutrition, fitness, and other lifestyle changes are what actually changes lives. Not energy drinks, protein powders, or supplements. Recommending diet and lifestyle changes is common sense, but it is also a smart business practice on the part of Advocare.

There are a lot of wonderful, inspirational stories that you will hear about people using Advocare products. I suspect that many of those transformations come from the nutrition and fitness programs that people have started and not the products themselves. I have practiced as a registered nurse for over 8 years in various specialties in both conventional and holistic health care.

I have owned a health and nutrition consulting practice since You can read more about my credentials here. The short answer is no. The simplest explanation is that the product is not real food. Depending on the flavor of Spark, beet root extract, grapeskin extract, and natural and artificial flavorings are also added.

Based on a cursory glance, the ingredients list does not seem too bad. After all, it is mostly vitamins and minerals and everyone needs more of these nutrients, right? The vitamins and minerals found in Spark are important to the optimal functioning of the body, but once again, it goes back to the real food concept. It is always best to obtain your nutrients through the foods that you eat and not rely on getting them through a powder or pill. One important reason for this is that vitamins and minerals manufactured in a laboratory for use in a supplement are not always in the most bioavailable form that the body can actually use.

This is especially true with supplements that are not professional-grade. As one example, I will highlight the vitamin B12 that is in Advocare Spark. Vitamin B12 is a nutrient that helps to maintain healthy nerve and red blood cells and is essential to the synthesis of DNA and RNA, as well as the production of neurotransmitters. Vitamin B12 deficiency can lead to pernicious anemia. Since vitamin B12 is only found in animal products or fortified foods, it is recommended that people who are vegetarian or vegan supplement with vitamin B12 As a former vegetarian, I recommend that people who are vegetarian or vegan change their diet if they want to find optimal health.

In the supplement industry, there are several forms of vitamin 12 that can be used in products. Because of its low manufacturing costs and relative stability, cyanocobalamin is the most common form of vitamin B12 that is used in low-end vitamin products, including Advocare Spark.

Cyanocobalamin is a synthetic form of vitamin B12 that does not occur in nature, but it can only be manufactured in a lab. In order to be utilized by the body, cyanocobalamin has to be converted by the body into an active form of vitamin B The best way to get more vitamin B12 into your diet is to optimize your digestion and consume high quality meats, fish, poultry, and eggs.

If you are going to supplement with vitamin B12, be sure to choose a high quality, active form of vitamin B12 that can be readily utilized by the body, not cyanocobalamin. The cyanocobalamin in Advocare Spark is just one example of how the forms of the vitamins and minerals in this product do not necessarily provide the most benefit to the body. In general, MLM companies make money by manufacturing products using the lowest cost ingredients that they can find and then marking them up to outrageous prices.

With vitamins and minerals, that often means that you are literally flushing your money down the toilet in the form of nutrients that your body is unable to utilize. You are much better off using your hard-earned money to purchase nutrient-dense, whole foods that contain all of the nutrients you need in the forms that the body can use. That leads me to the next issue with the seemingly benign vitamins and minerals found in Advocare Spark.

Multi-vitamins and supplements such as Advocare Spark operate on the premise that everyone needs these extra nutrients and more is always better. According to the Spark label, consumers are urged to drink servings of Spark per day. In the case of the water-soluble vitamins such as B12 , you will excrete what your body is unable to use in your urine and overdosing is not a concern.

But what is a major issue is that all vitamins and minerals work synergistically in the body. Throwing a bunch of nutrients together in an energy drink in various amounts ignores the careful balance that is needed in order for vitamins and minerals to work effectively and efficiently in the body.

The beautiful thing about eating foods found in nature is that they already contain the vitamins and minerals in the exact proportions that are needed to perform their specific roles. Another consideration is a lack of attention to bioindividuality of people consuming the product. The body has a remarkable ability to balance the ratios between minerals, but due to a variety of modern lifestyle factors, such as diet and toxic environmental exposures, the system sometimes goes awry, leading to imbalances between nutrients.

The zinc and copper present in Advocare Spark can be used as an example of the significance of a lack of bioindividuality. Zinc and copper are minerals that have an antagonistic relationship. In our modern society, zinc and copper imbalances usually manifest as an excess of copper and a deficiency of zinc. There are numerous clinical reasons why I may not recommend that a client take a supplement with both zinc and copper in it if they are deficient in zinc or have an excess of copper.

Or I may recommend a supplement with zinc and copper with very specific ratios. The balance between the zinc and copper found in Advocare Spark may not be the best ratio to suit your particular needs.

Mineral imbalances can potentiate serious health issues if they are not corrected. Now, we can get into a few of the more obvious problems with the ingredients in Advocare Spark. The first toxic ingredient that sticks out on the list is sucralose, otherwise known as Splenda.

Sucralose is an artificial sweetener that was first discovered by researchers who were investigating insecticides. Yes, you read that correctly- insecticides! Sucralose is manufactured in a highly refined process that replaces hydroxyl molecules in sugar usually derived from genetically modified sugar beets with chloride.

It is one of the newest artificial sweeteners on the market and it was approved by the FDA in , as the Advocare website proudly proclaims. There are a lot of reasons why FDA-approval does not necessarily make a product or drug safe, but that is beyond the scope of this post. FDA recalls and withdrawals happen quite frequently and in the case of sucralose, I am not convinced of its safety.

Because sucralose is a relatively new artificial sweetener, there is no life-long data available on its use in humans. Research does show that sucralose can significantly alter the gut flora and there is growing evidence that the gut flora is essential to overall health and wellbeing of the entire body.

In our modern society, most of us were not provided with an ideal environment in which to foster optimal gut health from the very moment of our birth. I can assure you that none of us need any additional help from sucralose in creating an imbalance of gut flora! These ingredients are not always intuitive.

There is usually little or no testing done to verify the safety of these ingredients in the food supply. A principle known as the Threshold of Toxicological Concern TTC is used to justify the addition of these ingredients to the food supply.

The concept behind TTC is that very small amounts of chemicals should not pose a risk to human health when they are added to foods. You can read more about how the principle of TTC is applied to our food system here. Well, sure it does. One serving of Advocare Spark contains mg of caffeine. The average cup of coffee contains 95mg. If you are suffering from a lack of energy, fatigue, and mental fogginess that Advocare Spark promises to help, the answer is not caffeine or a low-quality vitamin and mineral supplement with artificial flavorings and caffeine added.

You need to address the root of the problem, which likely stems from a combination of poor diet, uncontrolled stress, a lack of proper movement of the body, insufficient sleep and rest, and exposure to environmental toxins. Without a comprehensive nutrition and lifestyle approach that addresses all of these factors, you will not realize your potential of optimal health. I know someone who sells and was trying to get me on board as well.

Following a Paleo lifestyle has been what has worked best for me, no artificial anything and I talk about it with anyone I can that has asked me what I do. I think with the studies that are coming out more recently that are demonstrating the effects that man made franken-food are causing may help to show some of the population that these things are more harmful than beneficial. I am confident that eventually the research will support how harmful processed foods are the the population.

But you are right though- there will always be some people who choose to ignore the facts. Keep up the great work!!! Spark is not indented to replace eating. You absolutely need to eat. It is just an energy drink. You can use it whether you are on a diet or not. In no way shape for form would anyone associated with Advocare recommend you not eat.

Advocare does offer a meal replacement shake but is only to replace 1 meal a day. You still need to eat 2 additional meals and snacks. I have been drinking spark daily for over a year. I am put of school on spring break and have not drank any since we got out.

I am now experiencing chest pains. Could this be a withdrawal symptom from not drinking it? Hi Belinda- Hopefully, you have followed up on this with your health care provider. You should always take chest pain very seriously and have it evaluated by a physician. There are too many variables for me to be able to say what could be causing this for you.

Please report back if you are able. I have done some research myself on advocare, their 24 day challenge and particular their spark. I was wondering why so many people jump on board with that…still not sure why. I am no expert but have done my research and do see that there are alot of toxins in their products.

You have to look up the ingredients and what they are. Yes you may lose weight but your are not getting healthy. For those that are drinking spark or doing the 24day challenge I challenge you to look up some of the ingredients and you will be very surprised.

Do you really want that going in your body? Thank you for this respectful and thoroughly researched post explaining why real food trumps synthetic food products. I appreciate the time you put into patiently discussing the negative aspects of turning to a popular yet low-quality and potentially harmful fast fix. I hope people become more aware of the need to address signs of poor health with nutritional therapy and not just a band-aid processed food. Thanks again for all you do!

However, my general viewpoint is that professional line brands almost always offer superior products. Thanks for stopping by! What do you mean by professional line brands? Can you offer examples or where I can find a list of professional line brands? Are we looking at specific ingredients? Looking forward to your response! Professional line brands are those supplement companies that make therapeutic supplements that are marketed to health care professionals, as opposed to being marketed to the consumer.

They are not typically found over-the-counter and you must purchase them through a health care professional. The quality control is higher and a good professional line brand will utilize third party testing companies to verify the quality of raw ingredients, dosing, etc. I hope that this helps! Thanks for the in depth review! Thanks Katie for your article on Spark. I have been taking it for about 3 years in place of coffee. I do still have fatigue and fogginess , and also I seem to have joint problems, could the Spark be contributing to my joint problems?

I am not a expert either. But splenda makes my joints hurt. I came on this site because a friend recently started selling this product and I was curious. I prefer to eat my vitamins. I recently joined a Crossfit gym and within a few weeks realized it was not for me.

The trainers actually, IMHO, went too far. BUT I had already bought the 24 day program. So 4 months later I decided since I cannot return it why not use it. I lost six pounds on it and felt no better. I added running and a normal run of the mill gym back in to my daily routine.

I am up to three miles per run and making slow gains in the gym the biggest part is I am losing size in a good way since I have decided to measure my fat rather than weight it. I modified my diet to eliminate sugar, fried foods, and processed foods; nothing but fresh meats, seafoods, veggies, fruits, and complex carbs.

Better to go natural with food and exercise. Thanks for stopping by the blog and sharing your story. Keep up the great work! Hey Michael, my name is Pete. Understand that every CrossFit has a different environment and fit. I encourage you to go try another one, because the principles and results cannot be matched in my opinion.

You just have to find the right one for you. In response to the AdvoCare I am extremely glad that you have decided to stop and not take those products. This is a big deal for alot of us out there. Can you please tell me what wold be considered professional lines of product? And incluse varying levels of affordability? I truly would love to eat more organic, whole foods and learn how to make healthier choices while having a variety of offerings.

It make me sick! Anyway, I would love can email or something with some recommendations of professional lines of product. Thank you, Stephanie Clark. There are many professional line brands. Professional line brands will be more expensive than over-the-counter in general, but you pay for what you get. It is better to get these products through a health professional that understands how they should be used.

AdvoCare disputed the ruling [42] and on April 30, , filed to appeal the decision on the basis that the plaintiffs were not customers and therefore did not fit the statutory definition necessary to be covered under the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act.

Wendy Miller of the Beaumont Weight Control Center said AdvoCare's Herbal Cleanse is probably safe for many users, but she suggested that the same results could be achieved without the products. The exposée argues that the company and a small number of distributors at the top of a distribution network makes most of its money from the signing-up of new distributors rather than sales of the product, while exaggerating the likelihood of financial success of distributors when only a few make a significant amount of money; that the company creates a cult-like atmosphere of not questioning the company's claims or the probability of financial success in new distributors, to the point where distributors will shun friends and family members who do so; and that the company is internally riven by divisions over the company's strong use of religious affiliation as part of its business model, with more devout members of the organization using it to gain and hold power in the organization and over its members.

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