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STDWatch
Dr. Patricia Shelton

Feb 25, 20237 min read

Joinzoe.com review

The information provided herein does not constitute an expert or medical advice, nor intended to replace such advice.

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Over the last few years, there’s been a rise of home health testing. More and more people are interested in taking control of their own health, and ordering your own health tests is one way to do this.

ZOE is a new nutrition program designed to provide personalized nutrition advice. Many people are looking for ZOE health program reviews. This program represents a significant investment. Is it worth it?

What is ZOE?

The ZOE program is designed to be a comprehensive nutrition program. It involves home test kits, including a “muffin challenge” test that helps to determine your metabolic response to specific foods, as well as a test of your gut microbes. In addition, ZOE includes an app that’s designed to help you make better food choices.

Who is it for?

ZOE is intended for the general public. Although people with conditions like diabetes or gut health issues (like ulcerative colitis) are not prohibited from joining the program, it’s important to note that the program isn’t designed around specific medical needs. If you have any chronic medical conditions, you should definitely check with your medical team before you decide whether ZOE is right for you.

Additionally, people who have a history of eating disorders or who are pregnant or nursing should not take part in ZOE, because it’s not designed around their specific needs.

What does ZOE include?

There are several different components of the ZOE program:

  • Gut microbiome test. This tests levels of multiple different microbes in your gut, including some that research has linked to good outcomes and some that have been linked to health problems.

  • Blood sugar and fat metabolism tests. You eat specially designed test muffins, and then your blood sugar and blood fat levels are measured through fingerprick blood tests. This determines how your body responds to carbohydrates and fats in your food.

  • Food tracking app. Based on your mix of gut microbes and your blood sugar and fat responses, this app uses AI to determine what your likely response to various food combinations is. You log all of your food in the app, and it gives you a dietary score each day.

  • Coaching. You can chat with ZOE health coaches online, to help answer any questions and help you stay motivated with your eating program.

How does it work?

ZOE tests your body’s response to different types of food. You eat certain standardized muffins for breakfast and lunch one day. These contain measured amounts of carbohydrates, protein, and fat, and allow for your body’s response to the various components to be measured. You’ll need to take a few blood samples on the day that you eat the muffins, so you’ll need to plan around doing your ZOE test.

ZOE also tests levels of various microbes in your gut. You send in a fecal sample, and levels of different microbes are measured. ZOE gut health testing currently looks at levels of 30 different specific microbes.

You’ll then get access to personalized nutrition information based on the results of your testing. If you’re looking for ZOE weight loss reviews, you should note that ZOE is not specifically designed as a weight loss program, but a more comprehensive nutrition program. However, many people do lose weight on ZOE, because they’re eating healthier.

Is ZOE legit?

The ZOE program is based on a huge number of scientific research studies. The lab testing is done in an accredited laboratory, so you can be confident that the results are accurate. In addition, ZOE has published results of its own specific program showing beneficial results. Generally, it’s important for scientific results to be repeated by another research group before they can be relied upon, but it’s encouraging that this specific program has actually been tested.

However, it’s also important to note that the research on factors like the gut microbiome is still in its infancy. At the moment, we simply don’t have comprehensive research indicating which species of bacteria are more beneficial. Many researchers argue that promoting tests of the gut microbiome is somewhat premature, given that we still don’t really have a handle on this very complex topic.

ZOE has a 4.5 star score on TrustPilot, and as of February 2023, 73% of people gave a five-star ZOE review. Many of the negative ZOE labs reviews mention that the program is expensive. It’s important to be clear about what you’re signing up for and make sure you feel it’s worth the cost, since ZOE is not cheap.

Pros

The ZOE program aims to provide personalized nutrition advice. Everyone’s body responds differently to food. ZOE takes into account your specific responses, so you don’t get one-size-fits-all advice.

It’s also important to take into account the gut microbiome when considering nutrition. Research is showing that your microbiome is hugely influential for your health, so any program that doesn’t consider this aspect of health may be missing a huge part of the picture. ZOE takes into account how your body processes both blood sugar and blood fats, as well as your microbiome, to help provide more personalized advice.

Cons

The ZOE program is only available in the continental US and Hawaii. New York is excluded, because of regulations in the state. If you aren’t a resident of an area where ZOE is available, then you won’t be able to participate in the program. There’s an early access program for residents of the UK, but ZOE hasn’t yet been rolled out for general access there.

ZOE also requires quite a bit of time and dedication. Logging all of your food in the app requires you to stay consistently motivated to remember to do this. In addition, the reports that you get are extremely comprehensive, and could take a long time to read through and understand. Not everyone has the time and attention to devote to the ZOE program.

In addition, although it’s personalized, ZOE doesn’t do any allergy testing, and doesn’t take known allergies into account. If you know that you’re allergic to specific foods, then you’ll need to modify your plan yourself. For those with food allergies, this can make a “personalized” nutrition program seem a little less personalized. ZOE nutrition reviews sometimes note this lack of attention to allergies.

Payment methods

ZOE is paid for online, using a credit card. There’s an initial cost of $294 for the testing. You then pay monthly for access to the ZOE app and coaching, which costs between $29 and $59 per month depending on how long of a period you subscribe for.

Results

After you mail in your samples and send in all of your data, you’ll get your results in about six weeks. The ZOE results are extremely comprehensive, with two reports of 40 to 90 pages each. Some people may feel overwhelmed by having this much data, but ZOE also includes an action plan to help you decide what to do with all of this information.

Sources

TrustPilot: ZOE Reviews. https://www.trustpilot.com/review/joinzoe.com. Accessed 9 Feb 2023.

ZOE. https://joinzoe.com/. Accessed 9 Feb 2023.


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