We are all looking for a quick and easy fix for our weight loss needs. It’s always intriguing when a company wants to offer us all of the products that we need for success- plus one that offers a unique solution that no one else does. Le-Vel has created its Thrive line with this goal in mind. But should we give them the time of day?
Thrive has many components- a multivitamin, shakes, and a skin patch. Supposedly if you take the 8-week challenge, it will make you feel like a new person. So what products are worth your time and money?
Although the vitamins are divided for men and women, they are virtually the same product. Also, we should mention now that the product’s instructions can lead to a lot of confusion. The vitamins come in convenience packs of two but you are only meant to take one per day. This sort of defeats the purpose of being easy-to-use, but we’ll continue to look at them.
Thrive-M for men contains A, B, and D vitamins, selenium, and vanadium. A and D are both fat soluble vitamins and this product does not contain any fat so you’ll definitely need to take it with food (we will talk about the shake in a moment). The product also has the maximum amount of chromium you can have in a day.
Chromium has been shown to help with weight loss. It also contains caffeine from coffee and tea sources, which have also been shown to help with fat burning. However, this product does contain shellfish so it’s a definite no go if you have allergies or are vegan/vegetarian.
Thrive-W for women has almost the same exact contents as Thrive-M. It contains folic acid, which is important for women who are of child bearing age. This is because a folic acid deficiency is linked to birth defects like cerebral palsy and by the time some women find out they are pregnant, it may be too late. That is why this vitamin is recommended as a precautionary measure so it’s good that the product contains it.
However, it contains folic acid and a few other vitamins about 100%, which means a higher price tag. Your body will eliminate the excess too, so it’s not giving you any additional benefit. It will just most likely make your urine turn some spectacular colors.
Thrive-Mix is a shake powder that comes in three different flavors- vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry. The powder can be mixed with water or milk. But remember that milk just adds extra calories and potentially fat if you don’t go for skim options. The powder is only 110 calories, though, so milk can still be an option.
With 5 g of fiber and only 2 g of sugar, it’s a pretty good product. It also has 2 g of fat which is perfect for absorbing the fat soluble vitamins. However, it offers caffeine too. So if you’re doing the vitamins and the shake, you’re getting a lot! This may cause you to lose some water weight immediately, but it’s important to have caffeine in moderation to avoid dehydration.
The patch is where things get interesting. You are supposed to wear it for 24 hours, which can be pretty limiting if you like to work out or shower, which most people do. It also has forslean and cosmoperine, which are commercially made ingredients that remain a mystery. However, it has green coffee and garcinia cambogia, which can be potentially effective through a patch because they can be absorbed into your system through this method.
Again, caffeine has its place in weight loss, but this is your third product of the day with some in it. If you enjoy the occasional cup of coffee, tea, or even bite of dark chocolate, it can send you over the edge if the products themselves don’t do it before then. Also, garcinia cambogia is a much more debatable supplement for weight loss (see our article on it). The patch also has white willow bark, which is essentially a filler with a special name that helps to drive up the price.
Le-Vel is an intriguing company. When first reading about its founders, they seem to be on the up and up. However, one quick tap over to their brand information and that all goes up in flames. Le-Vel’s co-founders are Jason Camper and Paul Gravette. They are said to have 41 years of combined health experience. They were supposedly driven by their desire for a high-quality health product; however, they themselves appear to be of about average weight.
There is nothing wrong with being at a good average weight, but they don’t appear to have much tone besides. Typically, health company owners should practice what they preach and it appears that the founders want users to do as they say and not as they do. This raised the first flag, which was then echoed by their brand philosophy.
Although they had been involved in the health business, the founders’ mission was to create a brand, not a product (their words, not mine). They want their brand to become an icon that is recognized on a global scale. Forget quality products that work. Forget about changing lives for the better. It’s all about money and notoriety.
I guess that explains why they don’t fit the health enthusiast mold. They are businessmen who sit behind a desk and nothing more. This might also explain why they want to pump you full of caffeine so you can lose quick water weight, regardless of the potential health ramifications.
But what do the customers think? They give the vitamin supplements a 3.6 out of 5 stars. Approximately 48% gave the product a 5 out of 5 stars, 11% gave 4, 5% gave 3, 7% gave 2, and 29% gave 1 star. Most complaints were of upset stomachs and hot flashes.
Because the product has fat soluble vitamins, you should take it with food anyway. This may help tone down the side effects. Other users complained about feeling shaky and weak. This is most likely due to its caffeine content. You can battle this by drinking at least one glass of water with your vitamin.
The shakes also get a 3.6 out of 5 stars. About 57% of users gave the product a 5 out of 5 stars, 9% gave it 4, 2% gave it 3, 5% gave it 2, and 27% gave it only 1 star. Many users complained that the instructions were unclear. Apparently an individual packet contains enough powder for two shakes. This definitely limits the product’s convenience, but many users liked the taste well enough to overlook this shortcoming.
However, they are one of the more expensive shake mixes. At about $3 per shake they are in direct competition with brands like Shakeology, which will trump them due to their higher vitamin and mineral content.
The patches have the lowest satisfaction rating at 2 out of 5 stars. They received no 5 out of 5 ratings. 29% of users gave them a 4 star rating, 1% gave 3, 29% gave 2, and 28% gave 1 star. Now these low ratings may be because many users received expired products, but it was congruent with many other customer review sites.
The patch is known to fall off easily and it can be difficult to conceal. Most of us don’t want to blatantly advertise for a company that offers us no commission. Also, it can be embarrassing at the gym or at work since the patches are often brightly colored and glittery.
We give Le-Vel’s Thrive product line a 2 out of 5 stars. The product is individually packaged, but it is so in double doses limiting its convenience.
The vitamin supplement is decent and has some ingredients that are effective for weight loss; however, they are packaged separately for men and women in attempts to bump up the price.
The shakes are also of decent quality; however, their cost is astronomic for a mediocre weight loss product. If you’re spending that kind of money, you might as well shop around and get the most for your dollar.
Also, the patch, which is their unique brand-maker, has low reviews. It only has one active ingredient, which is already provided in the other two products. Also, you have to wear it for 24 hours which is fairly ridiculous. It is not designed to be showered with nor is it sweat-repellent. This is interesting since Le-Vel explains that you have to use the products along with a healthy diet and exercise regimen.
Overall, Le-Vel seems more concerned with making money and a large brand they can use for bragging rights than making a product that works. Now, companies will be concerned with the budget and profits- we all are. But it is nice to know that the intention is to help improve health and create a product based in science. They are out there and they are worth your time, money, and trust.
Only you are looking out for your body and your wellbeing. So be informed and make the choices that are right for you- not someone’s bottom line.
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2. Amazon. (2016). Thrive premium shake mix- single servings 16 per box.
3. Amazon. (2016). Thrive-W.
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5. Le-Vel. (2016). Brand philosophy. Retrieved from https://le-vel.com/Brand/Philosophy
6. Le-Vel. (2016). Co-owners, Co-founders, Co-CEOs. Retrieved from https://le-vel.com/Brand/ExecutiveTeam
7. Le-Vel. (2016). Thrive-Derma Fusion Technology. Retrieved from https://le-vel.com/Products/THRIVE/DFT
8. Le-Vel. (2016). Thrive-M. Retrieved from https://media.le-vel.com/Documents/THRV001M.pdf
9. Le-Vel. (2016). Thrive-Mix. Retrieved from https://media.le-vel.com/Documents/THRV002.pdf
10. Le-Vel. (2016). Thrive-W. Retrieved from https://media.le-vel.com/Documents/THRV001W.pdf
11. National Institutes of Health. (2016). Chromium Fact Sheet for Health Professionals. Retrieved from https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Chromium-HealthProfessional/
12. Zeratsky, K. (2016). Does caffeine help with weight loss? Retrieved from http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/weight-loss/expert-answers/caffeine/faq-20058459
Amanda is a gym instructor and a diet and nutrition fanatic that has reviewed 100s of supplements for the benefit of consumers. She struggled with obesity 7 years ago and after losing more than 30lbs, dedicates most of her time in helping others achieve similar results and transform their lives.
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