Advocare International: Faith & God

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You will notice that Advocare founder Charlie Ragus implemented the use of God right from the start, and at first glance seems causally related. But I believe otherwise. The use of religion was implemented as a business strategy. You will notice Advocare continues to utilize Charlie's number one statement “ Honor God through our faith, family and friends”. Although that in and of itself is not a bad thing, you will notice that Advocare has taken the use of God into a new direction, almost cult like. But I am not so sure Mr. Ragus intended for Advocare to become a religious company. Please allow me to explain.

If you watch this short video you will realize that Advocare does not just provide basic religious accommodations during success school, they go all out. The reason why I provided that particular video is because the guy recorded it the night before. Seems a little cultish to me, but that is just my personal perspective. 

I find it curious that a company that is in the direct marketing business spends an awful lot of money implementing God, as you can tell in this 20th anniversary video. So, as you can see, God becomes or has become an important element. If you read the Advocare International vs. Karen Ford case, you will know that it was not always like that. The following can be found on page 18 of the court manuscript:

“Danny McDaniel was told to stop preaching at Advocare meetings or else lose his distributorship, but McDaniel wouldn't, so he resigned his distributorship in favor of his wife and continued preaching”.
You will notice on page 6 McDaniel takes it a step further and testified to the following:
“Danny McDaniel claimed that he saw no conflict of interest in terminating 3 of his best friends and former football heroes when their earnings then flowed up to his wife, because he had been instructed (convicted) to do so by the Lord.”

As you can see, the McDaniel family begins to take a drastic turn towards the use of religion to advance their financial interest. But, at that point in time, Advocare did not seem to approve such behavior. That is apparent in the court manuscript.

Now you can find videos of Pastor Danny McDaniel,  and soon you will probably see him preaching at the Advocare success school prayer sessions that now appear to be acceptable. McDaniel claims in this video (around 1:30) that he found God in the winter of 1996 after years of lying, drinking, and sexual misconduct. Somehow I get the feeling it was more like the year he joined Advocare. According to this video, you will notice that the McDaniel family joined Advocare 2/18/97. Not a big separation between going back to church and joining.

Going back to the other video pertaining to pastor McDaniel, you will notice Danny talks about the Market Place Ministries.(3:00) I think you are probably starting to get the point. He did not just start a regular ministry, he started one that would benefit his business, and in my opinion is a selfish purpose. Misleading many people into believing they can obtain financial success only if they follow the Advocare success system does not sound like something God would support. You will notice other distributors also implementing God and can easily be found on the Advocare website. If you watch Krysta & Zach Huckabee’s video found on the previous link you will notice he is a pastor. Other than that, you will notice, if they are not promoting God, many of the successful Advocarians are owners of a gym, teacher, business owner, instructor, or already make decent yearly income. 

As you can see, God went from being an acceptable thought, but not acceptable in business, to being so acceptable that Advocare spends thousands during special events to accommodate that target market. McDaniel and other distributors incorporate Market Place Ministries for their own personal gain. Please do not misunderstand me, I am not telling you that religion is bad. Although I do not attend church, I do believe in God. But I also believe there is a fine line between crediting God for financial success, and using the Lord for personal gain. Please give me your thoughts about this subject below, I would love to hear from everyone.

I also want to make sure everyone understands, I do not hate Advocare. That is not what this blog is about. I provide the information, and from there it is up to you to decide to use it or not use it. I do encourage users of the product to avoid giving the products to their children due to the lack of real research proving its safety and efficacy.  I just finished writing an article about Advocare and distributors target shcools to increase sales and would love to get your feedback. 
As usual, Thank You for reading and please share!

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  1. This is very interesting. The thing I do know about this company is that it sells overly priced supplements which I could never bring myself to purchase. I have been a fitness enthusiast for years. I've been using supplements for the same amount of years and I couldn't justify spending double on products that I had been using for so long. I also didn't appreciate the over the top promises. Any diet works if you follow it, its really not magic. If you restrict enough calories you WILL lose weight. Its just science and has nothing to do with these (or any) products.

    I knew someone (we are no longer friends) who sells the products. Before he started selling the product he was struggling financially and I guess he became a distributor for extra income (which he's achieved - and on the record I am very happy for him). Before he started selling the products he had a very definite opinion about religion. We discussed it in detail on many occasions but eventually he became a born again Christian. It happened slowly. I would listen to the things he said like, he was "God's vessel" and "he was so blessed to be changing people's lives" and I remember thinking he was being brainwashed.

    One particular situation stuck out to me. There was a young lady who I introduced to him because I thought she might benefit from a structured program that the 24 day challenge promised. I honestly had no idea how much it cost or how it worked but I believed what he said so I recommended it to her. She did it and had some success but when the program was over she was left with the decision to either continue to purchase another program or take what she learned and go on her own. She told me she wanted to do the program again but couldn't afford it. She told me she was really upset about it so I spoke to my friend and explained her situation to him. I figured because he was so blessed to help people he'd be able to find a way to help her but that's not what happen. He made it clear that he could only help her as long as she was buying his products and that's when it became clear to me that this had nothing to do with him doing good for others. It was about his sales. That's when I knew the program was a scheme and he had become a completely different person. Eventually the friendship ended.

    So as I read your piece, it confirmed what I had suspected all along. I'm happy for people that are able to make a living doing something that makes them happy but its not anything I could ever see myself getting sucked into.

    1. Thank you for sharing your story it is greatly appreciated. I agree that the products make it difficult to stay a customer. Which in return makes it difficult for people to succeed unless the conditions are just right. Right personality, right place, and list of many other variables that have to happen to be successful. I am glad your friend was successful as well, as I do not write hoping and wishing for people to fail. I know there are a select few that will earn an income. But as far as the products being any better than those on the shelf, I agree, way over priced, and it is about recruiting. If the person does not join, and does not purchase the products, they do not want anything to do with the person anymore, and that is too bad. Again thanks for sharing your story, would you mind me sharing your story on my Advo-Truth Facebook or Advocare Review Facebook?