The power of a community can be unstoppable. Recent news stories about how communities have fundraised to pay for medical bills, school equipment, and public programs can be found on most local television stations. These stories focus on one key theme – that community action almost always centers around the well-being of individuals, especially those individuals who may not be able to fend for themselves. For some communities, this means focusing on creating meaningful and lasting health programs.
It is no surprise that a sense of community can go a long way in the pursuit of health goals. Even a single, close relationship like a well-functioning marriage can make a difference in a person’s mental and physical health. Studies show that physical contact (hugs, hand-holding, pats on the back) releases endorphins which lower stress and boost endorphins, which positively impacts overall health. Social isolation has an opposite effect, and studies show that individuals with fewer interpersonal relationships are at greater risk for heart health issues, stress, and mental illnesses like depression. Studies like these show that even primary human connections can make a lasting impact on the health of individuals.
As if this were not enough, better health habits are definitively and positively linked to better overall health. The encouragement, support, and guidance of individuals who may have already built those habits, or those working on those habits, give people trying to build healthy habits a place to turn to when they need help. It was precisely this type of community that was the foundation of Herbalife Nutrition’s Nutrition Clubs.
A History Of Herbalife Nutrition Clubs
Herbalife Nutrition clubs are community-oriented meeting places run by Herbalife independent distributors. These clubs are places where people in the community can attend exercise classes, wellness seminars, and eat and drink nutritious foods. Globally, there are more Herbalife Nutrition Clubs than Starbucks locations, which is a giant leap to have made in less than twenty years. Herbalife has been around since the 1980s, but it was not until 2004 that the first Nutrition Club was born.
The first Nutrition Clubs started in Mexico in the early 2000s. Two independent distributors saw the need for nutrition-based programming in their communities. They saw that the lack of wealth in the community played a contributing factor to the health of individuals within their communities. Rather than seeing a trend of community members averse to buying Herbalife Nutrition products because they did not care about their health, they saw individuals who cared very much about their health but did not have the money to afford gym memberships, health supplements, and consistent access to nutritious food. The independent distributors who started the original Nutrition Clubs broke down their supplies into single servings, so that it was affordable to more people for a small fee. From there, they started to offer other health and wellness classes. The concept stuck, and so too did Nutrition clubs.
Today, members of Herbalife Nutrition Clubs pay a small fee to access many different wellness tools. Members are typically invited to the clubs and, after paying the fee, have access to Herbalife Nutrition’s range of nutritional product offerings (including teas, shakes, and aloe products). Additionally, Nutrition Clubs offer community activities, including health challenges, group workouts, and community walks.
The Link Between Food Deserts & Community Wellness
Wellness is often dependent upon income. The Journal of The American Medical Association recently highlighted this fact and suggested that providing access to community wellness programs would be a critical step forward for improving the health of the lower class. Herbalife Nutrition is helping in areas where community health programs do not exist. Herbalife Nutrition’s Health Clubs instead put the power of health into community members’ hands. Independent distributors run wellness, exercise, and other programs based on their community’s needs. Most importantly, they provide nutritional information for those who may not otherwise have access to this information.
Nationwide, there are over 23,000,000 people who live in food deserts. Food deserts are classified differently based on whether a person lives in a rural or urban setting. For those in rural settings, a food desert means no supermarket access for 10 miles. For those in urban settings, food deserts mean no access to supermarkets within 1 mile. Instead, people living in food deserts may have ready access to fast foods and processed foods available at convenience stores and gas stations, exacerbating health issues. The creation of Nutrition Clubs highlighted one startling fact – people living in food deserts are concerned about their health and want access to nourishing food and community wellness programs. They simply do not have the means to access these vitally important health tools.
For residents living in urban or suburban food deserts, having access to Nutrition Clubs make sense. They are affordable ways for residents to access nutritional and physical health resources. Herbalife Nutrition Club communities offer people who may still be learning about nutrition a place to be supported by people they know. This provides a jumping-off point for those who want to learn more about their health and wellness in a non-judgmental setting that encourages health exploration. Having an open, judgment-free place to discuss is key to the quality of the program.
Studies have shown that in interpersonal relationships where humans continuously stress one another out, the body negatively reacts. This has been a consistent problem in chain gymnasiums, where people seeking a healthy lifestyle may feel out of place among frequent gym-goers. Research has found that it is not just access to community health programs but rather the quality of those health programs and the discussions within them that make a big difference. Environments perceived to be hostile contribute to stress and inflammation within the body. Because Herbalife Nutrition Clubs are made up of community members most individuals know, there is an element of friendliness and familiarity that may help members feel better mentally and physically.
Why In-person Community Nutrition Clubs Are Necessary
Additionally, the peer-to-peer nature of Herbalife Nutrition clubs has proven beneficial to those seeking a healthier lifestyle. It is a type of relationship that cannot be replicated over the internet, even with today’s extensive and high-tech solutions. Studies have shown that wellness clubs with an in-person component help participants remain consistent with their goals. Similar studies have shown that working out with another person significantly increases the benefits you receive from working out, such as stress relief and strength training.
Herbalife Nutrition Independent Distributors are at the helm of Nutrition Clubs. If they know anything, it is this – nutrition and wellness are highly personal, and there is no “magic cure” for every person out there. What may be healthy for one individual might not be the right choice for another. So, having the personal connection of the in-person wellness coaching and Nutrition Clubs has been a critical factor behind the success of Wellness Clubs.
Independent Distributors receive regular training through Herbalife nutrition experts, fitness instructors, and coaches. All the information they receive is backed by science and leaders in their fields, which means that independent distributors offer easy access to legitimate, up-to-date wellness information. This prevents customers looking to enhance their wellness routine from feeling the burnout of contradictory opinions on the internet and provides customers with personalized health plans.
The Role Of Independent Distributors In Nutrition Clubs
Independent distributors who facilitate Nutrition Clubs play a fantastic role in their community. They are familiar and friendly faces who are there to help others on their health journeys. The most exciting part of their role? As a part of their community, they have the scientific knowledge to help guide healthy decisions and personal knowledge to help customers stick to their goals in a way that works for them. They set achievable goals and paths toward those goals, including training for a race, eating better, or losing weight.
When customers accept an invitation to a Nutrition Club, they get to meet with a Herbalife Independent Distributor. Independent Distributors work with individuals to identify their pre-existing health habits and their overarching needs to find ways to best support those goals. For instance, if a person’s goal might be to run a 10K at the end of the year, but they have never participated in any running beforehand, the independent distributor could suggest nutrition modifications and exercise plans that would help that customer reach their goal.
One of the most complex parts of sticking to a wellness plan is staying motivated. Independent distributors design wellness club activities to keep customers happy and invested in their community, contributing to sustained motivation. However, everyone knows that slip-ups inevitably happen. Independent distributors also nurture non-judgmental accountability within Nutrition Clubs to keep customers on top of their wellness goals. They also help Nutrition club participants get over their limiting beliefs, which might be holding them back.
Healthy Lifestyles, Healthy Life
Nutrition Clubs rely on communities coming together to work.
Without the support of the community, Nutrition Clubs go defunct. The fact that there are nearly 90,000 Herbalife Nutrition Clubs worldwide shows that communities globally are invested in all aspects of wellness and that they see these club spaces as a place where they can pursue overall wellness.
Eating a nutritious diet and exercising is only one part of a more significant health equation. Of course, nutrition and exercise are integral to reducing metabolic disorders, high cholesterol, high blood sugar, heart disease, and diabetes. But the community aspect that underlies Herbalife Nutrition Clubs addresses far more than just nutrition and diet. Its holistic approach to health shows a clear positive impact on community members’ mood and mental health, which, combined with health and nutrition, may positively impact cancer risk. But most importantly, it works toward community longevity, boosting the livelihood of cities and towns worldwide. That is a kind of health that’s impossible with just a diet or exercise change.