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Wolfgang
05-06-2014, 02:06 PM
So a few people on the ol' FB were passing this around today - soylent.me (http://soylent.me). Which, obviously, I first assumed was a viral campaign for a remake of the movie. But it's apparently a real thing? Like, with a non-joke Wikipedia page (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soylent_(food_substitute)) and all.

This is super weird to me - it's not a meal replacement shake like Slim Fast or anything like that, it's a food substitute? As in, it's nutritionally complete, you could just survive on it forever? There are a lot of details missing on their website, though. I'm assuming if you DID try to replace all of your solid food intake with Soylent there'd be some pretty harsh physical repercussions, especially if you tried going back on solid food after an extended period of time.

Has anybody else heard of this? I'm assuming that the general response from this group will be to completely disregard it as quackery. But I want to research it more as I do like the benefits of not having to actually worry about food/food prep and could see making meals of it a few days a week, or an every-other-day schedule. I feel like that'd be a pretty decent way to regulate weight loss as well.

Teaspoon
05-06-2014, 02:14 PM
What immediately occurs to me is to wonder whether the ingredients are a decent substitute for fibre. A diet composed of all useful, usable produce isn't going to have the indigestible cellulose that humans actually need, would it?

Maybe that's what the oat flour is for, but I'd be cautious.

edit: (I'm especially wary of anything that claims that women and men have identical nutritional requirements. Women do tend to need more iron, for instance. A handy one-size-fits-all product makes it sound like they're not paying attention to micronutrients, which are what's going to mess you up given an extended regime on this diet.)

will
05-06-2014, 02:16 PM
I ordered a small amount a while ago out of curiosity, and it should be arriving sometime relatively soon. So I'll let you folk know if I die or something.

Wolfgang
05-06-2014, 02:19 PM
I ordered a small amount a while ago out of curiosity, and it should be arriving sometime relatively soon. So I'll let you folk know if I die or something.

I'm really curious to hear non-Soylent-sponsored accounts of how it goes, so please keep me posted in this thread!

E: Falselogic just mentioned on FB that it's the same thing as Ensure. It can't be, can it?

E2: this thread (http://discourse.soylent.me/t/comparing-soylent-to-existing-nutritional-products/431/4) (admittedly on Soylent's forums) goes over the differences between the products.

will
05-06-2014, 02:21 PM
I'm really curious to hear non-Soylent-sponsored accounts of how it goes, so please keep me posted in this thread!

Absolutely! I'm not sure the precise timeline on when I'll get it ("shipping has begun", but......?????), but I'd be happy to Let's Play Soylent.

kaisel
05-06-2014, 02:27 PM
I wouldn't mind this for like breakfast since I'm usually half asleep anyway, or for days where I'm busy and just need something to eat. It also seems to have become popular enough that other companies are getting in on the food substitute game, Ambronite's (https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/ambronite-real-food-drinkable-supermeal) doing something similar except with natural ingredients.

An Ars Technica writer tried it for a week or so (http://arstechnica.com/series/ars-does-soylent/), for an earlier version. There was some discussion on TT about Soylent before, but I don't recall what thread it was at the moment. Their reaction was somewhat mixed, but it was using a previous version.

Wolfgang
05-06-2014, 02:29 PM
edit: (I'm especially wary of anything that claims that women and men have identical nutritional requirements. Women do tend to need more iron, for instance. A handy one-size-fits-all product makes it sound like they're not paying attention to micronutrients, which are what's going to mess you up given an extended regime on this diet.)

I couldn't see switching to this entirely for long-term. Wouldn't going on an all-liquid diet seriously mess up, or at least change, your stomach? My nephew was diagnosed with severe Crohn's disease and has to drink Ensure and receive other nutrients from a tube implanted into his abdomen. Would there be effects on your teeth/gums/jaw?

Patrick
05-06-2014, 02:48 PM
Yeah, this came up a while ago. People who really enjoy cooking were horrified, while some others were intrigued.

I bet that almost no one would be willing to forgo all food in favor of this, but I can see the appeal. Some days I'm just not interested in making a meal, and when I don't have anything on hand I'm a lot more likely to eat fast food or junk food. Especially one you consider existing inexpensive food, this sounds pretty good. I'm not a dietitian, and I have no idea if it does what they claim, but it will be interesting to see if it takes off.

upupdowndown
05-06-2014, 05:06 PM
my concern with this is that we're still pretty bad at figuring out nutritional needs and are just now realizing the importance of gut flora for overall health. My gut* feeling is that switching out a diet of real food with plenty of vegetables for a diet of NUTRIENT SLURRY is going to discombobulate those gut bacteria somethin' fierce.

But as an occasional meal substitute? sure, have at it.





*pun unintended

dosboot
05-06-2014, 05:25 PM
Any number of cereal boxes (among other fortified products) will have nutrition labels with row after row of 100%s. It doesn't mean they are equivalent to eating that amount of normal food. The difference between something that is intended to supply all of a human body's daily nutritional needs and one that actually does is an enormous gap of human knowledge that we are far from solving. (Edit: which was upupdowndown's point exactly.)

The foods contained in this are: oat flour, rice protein, canola oil and fish oil. You could easily just buy those ingredients. Actual oats and rice from the supermarket would cost 10 cents/serving. A serving of oil is similiar. The rest of this product that you wouldn't be getting are all the artificially added vitamins. I don't believe eating a multivitamin and those 4 ingredients deserves to be marketed as solving the nutritional problem for you. It's the modern day equivalent of putting the "fat free" label on something (selling people the hope that this product is certified okay in some sense).

Paul le Fou
05-06-2014, 07:42 PM
Yeah, this came up before and reactions went from "thank god, I hate worrying about food" to "this is a kafka-esque nightmare and also racist."

I'll be waiting until some actual long-term studies have shown us what subsisting on simple shakes for extended periods of time would, like, do to you. But I can see benefit in having a nutritionally complete(?) supplement onhand pretty much anywhere in the world.

Googleshng
05-06-2014, 08:37 PM
If I recall, this first came to the forum's attention via the thread of awful kickstarters, where the creator (who totally has no actual knowledge of nutrition beyond looking up how much of everything you need to meet 100% USDA requirements of everything) sorta half bragged about when he first started, he almost killed himself by leaving something out that you kinda totally need to live. Between that and his marketing savvy, this definitely seems like someone you should trust to sell you a non-FDA approved slurry to replace your diet with!

Wolfgang
05-06-2014, 09:57 PM
If I recall, this first came to the forum's attention via the thread of awful kickstarters, where the creator (who totally has no actual knowledge of nutrition beyond looking up how much of everything you need to meet 100% USDA requirements of everything) sorta half bragged about when he first started, he almost killed himself by leaving something out that you kinda totally need to live. Between that and his marketing savvy, this definitely seems like someone you should trust to sell you a non-FDA approved slurry to replace your diet with!

I'm assuming that the general response from this group will be to completely disregard it as quackery.

My gut* feeling is that switching out a diet of real food with plenty of vegetables for a diet of NUTRIENT SLURRY is going to discombobulate those gut bacteria somethin' fierce.


I'm assuming if you DID try to replace all of your solid food intake with Soylent there'd be some pretty harsh physical repercussions, especially if you tried going back on solid food after an extended period of time.

teekun
05-06-2014, 11:04 PM
Just looking at the Wikipedia page the alarm bells are everywhere.

Modifications to the ingredient list have occurred in response to results incurred in testing, for example: the first version of the formula omitted iron, which Rhineheart reported caused his heart to race.

A man who wasn't immediately aware of a extremely common, sometimes serious medical condition like anaemia is trying to create a food replacement via trial and error.

upupdowndown
05-07-2014, 02:13 AM
Just looking at the Wikipedia page the alarm bells are everywhere.

A man who wasn't immediately aware of a extremely common, sometimes serious medical condition like anaemia is trying to create a food replacement via trial and error.


#engineers

upupdowndown
05-07-2014, 12:30 PM
hey, someone from the New Yorker tried out Soylent and wrote about it (http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2014/05/12/140512fa_fact_widdicombe?currentPage=all). It's not coming up on my work computer so I can't post a pithy excerpt.

Teaspoon
05-07-2014, 12:49 PM
Automated food production is not a smart idea. Not until we've got something to power the machines with that isn't oil.

We're going to bump up against this problem anyway soon enough, there is no point in making it worse.

upupdowndown
05-07-2014, 01:05 PM
Automated food production is not a smart idea. Not until we've got something to power the machines with that isn't oil.

We're going to bump up against this problem anyway soon enough, there is no point in making it worse.

uh, you do realize that there's a lot of oil going into current industrial farming, yes? gotta drive those tractors and get products to warehouses (and then to stores) and whatnot.

Patrick
05-07-2014, 01:08 PM
hey, someone from the New Yorker tried out Soylent and wrote about it (http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2014/05/12/140512fa_fact_widdicombe?currentPage=all). It's not coming up on my work computer so I can't post a pithy excerpt.

I just skimmed it. This seemed like the most interesting part:

Liquid food has been given to patients in hospital settings for decades. Fifty years ago, when a patient was too sick to eat, doctors ground up regular food and put it into feeding tubes. Eventually, companies like Abbott Nutrition, the maker of Ensure, got into the game. Food replacements became more standardized and scientific. In the early nineteen-sixties, nasa made powdered drinks famous by using Tang in its space flights; according to Bruce Bistrian, the chief of clinical nutrition at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, in Boston, “the whole field exploded.” From the sixties to the nineties, liquid meal replacements became popular with the diet crowd, because they made it easy to quantify how many calories you consume. It was the era of Metrecal, Slimfast, and “a shake for breakfast, a shake for lunch, then a sensible dinner!” Today, aspiring bodybuilders drink Muscle Milk, a protein shake designed to add brawn. Bistrian, noting that the idea behind Soylent is “not rocket science,” said, “Any good nutritionist could put these ingredients in the proper amounts and make such a formula.”

Perhaps the main difference between Soylent and drinks like Ensure and Muscle Milk lies in the marketing: the product—and the balance of nutrients—is aimed at cubicle workers craving efficiency rather than at men in the gym or the elderly. From the perspective of its investors, this strategy might be sufficient for success. Sam Altman, of Y Combinator, mentioned Google and Facebook, and pointed out that search engines and social networks existed before both were created. “Most ideas, you can claim, are not new,” he said. “Often, they just haven’t been executed or marketed right.” Rhinehart tends to emphasize something else about his product: the idea that you could live on Soylent alone. Chris Running, a former C.E.O. of Muscle Milk, and an adviser to Soylent, called this suggestion “riskier.” He told me, “I don’t think it’s a position that people have ever taken before.”

The doctors I spoke to agreed that you could subsist on Soylent. But would it be a good idea? The debate, for the most part, revolves around substances found in real food, especially phytochemicals, which come from plants. Such compounds are not known to be essential for survival, but, in epidemiological studies, they appear to provide important health benefits. Lycopene, which makes tomatoes red, has been linked to lower rates of prostate cancer; flavonoid compounds, which make blueberries blue (and can be found in chocolate), have been associated with lower rates of diabetes. The science behind how our bodies use these chemicals isn’t precisely understood. But Walter Willett, the chair of the nutrition department at the Harvard School of Public Health, said that it would be unwise to miss out on them. “It’s a little bit presumptuous to think that we actually know everything that goes into an optimally healthy diet,” he told me. You can live without plant chemicals. “But you may not live maximally, and you may not have optimal function. We’re concerned about much more than just surviving.”

Rhinehart, naturally, is doubtful about this line of thinking. “How many humans in history were even getting broccoli and tomatoes?” he asked. As part of his research into Soylent’s formula, he told me, he considered adding some phytochemicals, but after reading dozens of inconclusive and contradictory studies, he said, it didn’t seem like an efficient use of resources.

So yeah, I bet that trying to subsist on just Soylent is likely a bad idea, but as a supplement it's probably not any worse than existing liquid diets or junk food. It's kind of dumb that he keeps pushing that angle.

upupdowndown
05-07-2014, 01:28 PM
So yeah, I bet that trying to subsist on just Soylent is likely a bad idea, but as a supplement it's probably not any worse than existing liquid diets or junk food. It's kind of dumb that he keeps pushing that angle.

I read it on my phone. I'm not surprised that he keeps pushing that angle; he's an engineer's engineer. Which is to say: he privileges his version of rationality above all else, included tens of thousands of years of human culture around food. In addition, Soylent seems to speak to that kinda techie utopian desire to somehow transcend the needs of the flesh and become pure information; problematically, most people tend to be pretty attached to our fleshy needs. There's also that glibertarian belief that reality can ultimately be "hacked"*, allowing you to be one of the Randian overloards who bestrides the very world like a colossus! or in this case, devote even more hours to your cubicle farm existence.

Actually, it really does sound like Soylent as an occasional meal replacement is a perfectly fine idea, and better than most other "got no time" solutions from a nutritional standpoint. I could even see some people using it as a way to reset their relationship with food. A Soylent cleanse - go on Soylent for two weeks and then approach real food with a different eye. But his dream of the Soylent algae? oddly terrifying.

the other really good thing about the article is that the author points out that the whole hippy-dippy farm-to-table ethos has pretty much left the working-class behind, mostly. (although my local farmer's markets all take foodstamps.)


ETA: you can see the initial discussion about Soylent on TT from last year here (http://www.talking-time.net/showthread.php?p=1501933#post1501933), in the Save the Last Bullet thread. There was actually a lot of interest in the stuff!


*and the corollary belief that you can do this hacking without having gone through extensive training in whatever field you're talking about. It's the Freakonomics approach: assume that your prowess in one field of rationality confers you with superpowers to unlock whatever issues in other fields haven't been solved for hundreds of years!

Wolfgang
05-07-2014, 01:51 PM
Actually, it really does sound like Soylent as an occasional meal replacement is a perfectly fine idea, and better than most other "got no time" solutions from a nutritional standpoint. I could even see some people using it as a way to reset their relationship with food. A Soylent cleanse - go on Soylent for two weeks and then approach real food with a different eye.

This is exactly how I would see myself approaching it. Portion control is difficult for me at times, and setting hard limits for a set period of days per week is something I could see as being very beneficial to not only helping take weight off but keep it off permanently. Not a diet but a reworking of how I approach food. As long as the nutritional needs are being met I don't see how it could be harmful.

Seth Marati
05-07-2014, 04:26 PM
We had this conversation (http://www.talking-time.net/showthread.php?p=1501933#post1501933) over a year ago, didn't we? Opinions were split.

Even though I'm in the "I hope it works, and I think it could" camp, my favorite response has got to be this:

Also we are literally only a century removed from not knowing what vitamins do. There are mad hormonal markers in food that have higher-order impacts we can't even imagine

I hope old dude's health holds up but there is a part of me that suspects his pineal gland is about to march out his mouth and down his chin carrying a car coat and leather valise.

Edit: Didn't see that uudd beat me with the link

Falselogic
05-07-2014, 04:44 PM
Best part of that New Yorker article was the 'Prepper who wants to order the stuff to go with his bug out bag and survival stuff...

Also, look up 'Preppers

ajr82
05-08-2014, 01:58 PM
Yeah, I think I posted it in the "Last Bullet" thread a few months ago because it seemed like equal parts quackery and Lifehacker-ubermensch nonsense. Mainly because of his palpable sense of resentment that food takes up time that could be spent Being Productive and Getting Things Done.

edit: I guess I should have read Seth's post.

Daikaiju
05-09-2014, 07:02 AM
Assuming this stuff is the Real Deal, it could make for a great emergency foodstuff to send instead of Cup Noodle. However, I doubt these guys would set a warehouse aside specifically for that.

upupdowndown
05-19-2014, 10:48 AM
I'm insanely curious, Willcoon: did your not-made-from-people nutrient sludge show up yet? Have you tried it?

will
05-19-2014, 11:08 AM
I'm insanely curious, Willcoon: did your not-made-from-people nutrient sludge show up yet? Have you tried it?

Not yet! I was notified that shipping was "beginning" on May 1st, but it sounds like it's still a ways off before I actually receive the thing. Larger orders shipping first (I think I only requested a week's supply), no shipping estimates yet, and they say that I'll get my "starter kit" (pitcher and scoop) a few weeks before the nutrient slurry itself ships.

I'm also curious, and I'll definitely let you all know when it arrives. Just so you know where I'm coming from: I think Soylent is weird, but I don't think it's sacrilegious. I doubt that it's a "perfect solution" to nutrition, but I also doubt that "just eating whatever" is perfect (or even locally optimal). I don't really expect to restock after my seek of Soylent runs out, but I might get some more if I become inhumanly powerful or if it's tasty enough to replace the occasional breakfast or lunch.

Wolfgang
05-19-2014, 02:41 PM
Just so you know where I'm coming from: I think Soylent is weird, but I don't think it's sacrilegious. I doubt that it's a "perfect solution" to nutrition, but I also doubt that "just eating whatever" is perfect (or even locally optimal).

considering most people's "whatever" is oreos and pepsi and KFC

upupdowndown
05-19-2014, 03:04 PM
considering most people's "whatever" is oreos and pepsi and KFC

shit, just put that in a blender and have it three times a day

Mightyblue
05-19-2014, 10:15 PM
Actually had to eat KFC a few nights back, and their chicken strips are more like breading with a very, very thin strip of meat in them. That, and the somersaults my stomach was doing afterward convinced me to not do that again. Not for 5.99 plus tax, besides.

What I really should have done is gone back to work and gotten the "same" meal from our deli; which would have been about half the cost and waaaay better in terms of quality and nutrition.

Falselogic
05-28-2014, 08:34 PM
NYT has an article on it (http://mobile.nytimes.com/2014/05/29/technology/personaltech/the-soylent-revolution-will-not-be-pleasurable.html)

Violentvixen
05-29-2014, 08:59 AM
NYT has an article on it (http://mobile.nytimes.com/2014/05/29/technology/personaltech/the-soylent-revolution-will-not-be-pleasurable.html)

I read that this morning and it's coming from a really bizarre place and clearly doesn't understand being poor and needing basic nutrients. Recommending eating pizza or ramen (with a friend egg!) instead of this is crazy.

upupdowndown
05-29-2014, 10:40 AM
I read that this morning and it's coming from a really bizarre place and clearly doesn't understand being poor and needing basic nutrients. Recommending eating pizza or ramen (with a friend egg!) instead of this is crazy.

I think you may have misread the article. this is the passage I think you're referring to:

But as soon as I began using Soylent, it dawned on me that Mr. Rhinehart’s entire premise of dividing food into “staple meals” and “leisure meals” was suspect.

It’s true that people sometimes eat meals that are mainly for sustenance (cheap frozen dinners, dried ramen, corn dogs) and other times we’re looking mostly for pleasure (72-hour short ribs). But I suspect that most of the time, for most meals, we want both sustenance and pleasure.

Soylent’s fatal flaw is that it can’t offer both. It optimizes for total sustenance at the expense of any pleasure. So while the drink might be nutritionally preferable to eating a diet of pizza, ramen and frozen dinners, I doubt it would be more pleasurable than doing so. There’s a lot of variety in pizza and ramen (try each with a fried egg). Soylent, meanwhile, will always be just the same.

Manjoo's stance is that Soylent's ultra utilitarian approach means that it won't succeed in being a widespread revolution in the way we interact with food, because we're usually hoping for sustenance and pleasure from our food. He's not saying that pizza and ramen are nutritionally superior to Soylent. He's conceding that Soylent is nutritionally superior to many foods.

dosboot
05-29-2014, 10:43 AM
I didn't read the article but... eggs are healthy and economical? Soylent is 3 dollars for 500 calories, and can't claim to be more nutritious than a multivitamin. Eggs and many other home prepared foods would be several times cheaper. Studies always show artificially added vitamins are very poor substitutes for vitamins obtained from food (and multivitamins are 3-20 cents anyway).

Wolfgang
05-29-2014, 11:19 AM
You left out the part where the article mentions eating them with pizza and packaged ramen. That's important.

There have been a number of articles decrying soylent that are essentially opinion pieces saying, yuck, I don't wanna drink THAT

upupdowndown
05-29-2014, 11:19 AM
Honestly, I think that Soylent in its current state is geared more towards people who are time-poor versus folks who are actually poor. Which makes sense, when you read about the dude who invented it, the people who were Soylent early adopters, and the types of folks that Soylent is marketing towards.


e: I've never been overly impressed with Manjoo's writing, and I think that the earlier New Yorker article was far better and more even-handed.

Violentvixen
05-29-2014, 11:42 AM
I think you may have misread the article. this is the passage I think you're referring to:

Manjoo's stance is that Soylent's ultra utilitarian approach means that it won't succeed in being a widespread revolution in the way we interact with food, because we're usually hoping for sustenance and pleasure from our food. He's not saying that pizza and ramen are nutritionally superior to Soylent. He's conceding that Soylent is nutritionally superior to many foods.

Interesting, when I read the article I make the exact opposite conclusion as you. After thinking it over more though I do appreciate his general point, I think his writing style rubs me the wrong way. When I trim the article down to just an outline in my head I don't get as upset about it although I still find it odd.

And although the drink is tastier than its horror sci-fi name implies, the whole idea of replacing lots of your meals with the same stuff day after day is a nightmarish prospect. It suggests that Soylent’s creators have forgotten a basic ingredient found in successful tech products, not to mention in most good foods. That ingredient is delight.

To me this is just opinionated emotional fluff! Using the words "horror" "sci-fi" "nightmarish" seems like pandering to other people who will hold his opinion.

The passage about how it's boring and beige really grated on me. He's coming at this from the perspective of being very emotionally attached to food (which as a food write for the NY Times he is probably required to be so I don't fault him for it), but I don't think the product is aimed at people like this at all.

After thinking about it more, another thing is that it's reminding me of people complaining about a new tech/science advancement not having. "Oh no, now I have to talk to a computer, it's cold and unfeeling, wah wah wah." There's a valid point there, sometimes you do want to talk to a person because you have a complicated issue. But it's also absolutely wonderful to be able to login to a website for 45 seconds and check your bank balance or whatever without wasting a ton of time talking to a person. They're different needs, which is why I just don't see why his review came at it from the hand-wringing "it has no soul" perspective. It strikes me as completely inappropriate.

Ultimately this quote from Rhinehart summarizes it best for me:

“Obviously there’s a lot more to food than nutrition,” he said. “We don’t expect people to live on this entirely. In fact, we think this elevates food into more of a leisure activity. You can go out with your friends or family, and if your default, staple meal is very healthy and sustainable and balanced, you can enjoy your other meals even more, because you don’t have to worry about how healthy they are.”

I will happily have two meals a day be a beige shake if that means I can go out and have fun with friends for the other meal a day. I turn down invites to lunch all the time because they're going somewhere unhealthy or too expensive.

I didn't read the article but... eggs are healthy and economical? Soylent is 3 dollars for 500 calories, and can't claim to be more nutritious than a multivitamin. Eggs and many other home prepared foods would be several times cheaper. Studies always show artificially added vitamins are very poor substitutes for vitamins obtained from food (and multivitamins are 3-20 cents anyway).

But you can't fry an egg or make pizza or ramen in as many places as you can make a powdered liquid. This is easy and light to throw in my bag and I can make it in the lunchroom at work. It's a great idea!

Completely agree about the vitamin supplement point. That's another thing that bugs me, I feel he should at least address that in the article.

Anyway, I'm not sure why I'm coming down as so pro-Soylent in this post but maybe I should order some!

Edit: These were posted while I was writing this.

There have been a number of articles decrying soylent that are essentially opinion pieces saying, yuck, I don't wanna drink THAT

Yeah, I think this is just another one of those pieces.

Honestly, I think that Soylent in its current state is geared more towards people who are time-poor versus folks who are actually poor. Which makes sense, when you read about the dude who invented it, the people who were Soylent early adopters, and the types of folks that Soylent is marketing towards.


e: I've never been overly impressed with Manjoo's writing, and I think that the earlier New Yorker article was far better and more even-handed.

Agreed on all counts.

upupdowndown
05-29-2014, 12:18 PM
funnily enough, Manjoo isn't a food writer; he's a tech writer. Used to write for Slate.

Violentvixen
05-29-2014, 12:23 PM
funnily enough, Manjoo isn't a food writer; he's a tech writer. Used to write for Slate.

Weeeiiiird.

Seth Marati
05-29-2014, 05:54 PM
Recommending eating pizza or ramen (with a friend egg!) instead of this is crazy.

Eggs won't even give you that much protein compared to all the cholesterol they contain, will they? I'm looking at the nutrition label on a carton of eggs now, and eating two will give you about a quarter of the protein you need in a day while putting you over your cholesterol limit by a solid margin.

dosboot
05-29-2014, 06:49 PM
Dietary limits on cholesterol are basically bogus though.

Red Hedgehog
05-30-2014, 06:08 AM
Dietary limits on cholesterol are basically bogus though.

This.

Evidence that eating too much cholesterol was in any way harmful started at inconclusive and ended at none.

upupdowndown
05-30-2014, 06:17 AM
ugh, it is immensely frustrating that dietary science is still all over the place so much and that government recommendations on nutrient intake can often be swayed by industry groups.

Paul le Fou
05-30-2014, 06:24 AM
Eggs are basically, like, the perfect food, right? You could probably survive on nothing but eggs.

I mean it wouldn't be great but among foods if I had to pick just one and only one to survive off of, eggs and me from here to the other side



But yeah, dietary science is really frustrating. It feels like nothing is ever good for you based on some kind of restriction or different studies (nuts are part of a healthy diet! Wait no they're poison now!) and that's before marketing adds another layer of fuckery to the shitshow.

Violentvixen
05-30-2014, 07:59 AM
ugh, it is immensely frustrating that dietary science is still all over the place so much and that government recommendations on nutrient intake can often be swayed by industry groups.

As someone who has been working in the physiology field for the last two years, my coworkers and I are firmly convinced this is because all physiologists are terrible at math and downright afraid of statistics.

Everyone in my work group (we're all scientists and engineers) has at some point gone off on a rant on how poorly designed physiology studies are.

Falselogic
05-30-2014, 08:32 AM
As someone who has been working in the physiology field for the last two years, my coworkers and I are firmly convinced this is because all [INSERT SCIENCE FIELD HERE] are terrible at [INSERT OTHER SCIENCE FIELD HERE] and downright afraid of INSERT THIRD UNRELATED SCIENCE FILED HERE].

This is what my experience hanging out with mathematicians, biologists, engineers, and physicists has taught me.

will
05-30-2014, 08:35 AM
So one of those Egg Council creeps got to you too, huh?! (http://www.frequency.com/video/youd-better-run-egg/160887515)

Violentvixen
05-30-2014, 12:22 PM
This is what my experience hanging out with mathematicians, biologists, engineers, and physicists has taught me.

Yes we all do that, but physiology is exceptionally bad at math. For a field that is all about seeing trends and patterns in populations their math is abysmal. I went to a conference and only one poster had anything more complicated than the linear regression.

There are many days where I just want this project to go away because the whole field is so stupid.

Vega
05-31-2014, 12:36 PM
This sounds like something the Gates Foundation would send to a poor or starving country so they can talk about reducing the cost of keeping a certain number of people alive and nourished. Have charities shown interest yet?

Rufferto
05-31-2014, 12:49 PM
This sounds like something the Gates Foundation would send to a poor or starving country so they can talk about reducing the cost of keeping a certain number of people alive and nourished. Have charities shown interest yet?

The product for that niche already exists (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plumpy'nut)

Vega
05-31-2014, 04:22 PM
The product for that niche already exists (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plumpy'nut)

I'm going to have to join a club of Plumpy'nut fans so when we meet people drinking Soylent we can boast that our tasteless food substitute has saved lives.

Wolfgang
05-31-2014, 04:38 PM
I'm going to have to join a club of Plumpy'nut fans so when we meet people drinking Soylent we can boast that our tasteless food substitute has saved lives.

what a rad thing to have said

Rufferto
05-31-2014, 05:04 PM
I'm going to have to join a club of Plumpy'nut fans so when we meet people drinking Soylent we can boast that our tasteless food substitute has saved lives.

Actually, Plumpy'nut has another advantage over Soylent, in that it is allegedly "surprisingly tasty (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plumpy'nut#Composition)".

Rufferto
05-31-2014, 05:37 PM
What I don't get is how the recipe for Plumpy'nut can even be patented when it's basically peanut butter and powdered milk. Hell, I've independently invented that by mixing this (http://www.bellplantation.com/products.html) with some milk, though I suppose for long term storage purposes, having the milk be powdered instead of the peanut butter would make more sense.

Paul le Fou
05-31-2014, 11:53 PM
powdered peanut butter wtf is this

Torzelbaum
06-01-2014, 01:42 AM
powdered peanut butter wtf is thisI wonder if that is really just "peanut flour (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peanut_flour)".

upupdowndown
06-01-2014, 10:37 AM
powdered peanut butter wtf is this

I've had PB2! It's not bad in that he has a really great rich taste to it, but the texture can leave a little to be desired. It is INCREDIBLE in smoothies or cooking for getting a rich peanut butter taste.

will
11-05-2014, 05:42 PM
MY KIND OF PEOPLE! LET'S DRINK: SOYLENT

http://i.imgur.com/Hy8n9WOl.jpg

So my nutrient slurry arrived! It came with 7 pouches of food powder, 7 hotel-shampoo-vials of food oil, and a starter kit - a half-meal scoop, a one-pouch airtight jug, and an instruction manual.

http://i.imgur.com/fHWBqmSl.jpg

Here's the stuff. Each pouch is supposed to be "three meals" worth of powder. To make a batch, you basically just pour one pouch into the jug, add water, shake it until they're well-mixed, add an oil bottle and more water until it's full, then shake a while more. Apparently you need to add, like, half a teaspoon of salt if you plan to live on the stuff. Which is weird, I expect it's something they'll change for the second iteration of the formula?

I don't have any pics of what it looks like mixed, yet. Maybe I can take one tomorrow morning. It's sort of a beigeish, off-whitish shake-like substance. My first batch was kinda powdery, but it's not so bad if you actually shake it properly. I also picked up a cheap shaker bottle - one serving size, with a little whisk ball that helps mix powdered stuff into water more easily - which is pretty convenient.

It's got a distinct smell / taste, kinda... flour, or bread, or batter? I think it's actually pretty tasty, if not particularly thrilling. I haven't tried much in the way of mix-ins (they recommend trying out fruit or peanut butter), but a bit of chocolate syrup worked all right.

(And for various reasons, the smell of soylent has been permanently associated in my brain with Card City Nights...)

It's pretty convenient as a food that's portable and quick to make - good for a breakfast if you're like me and it's replacing some cereal, or oatmeal you don't have time to make, or nothing. I tend to feel like it's not going to be enough food, but after a glass I do feel full. I haven't seriously tried the only-soylent diet, but I've done a couple days of soylent for breakfast and dinner.

Once you mix it up, you're supposed to drink it within 48 hours. As I wasn't replacing all my meals, a full jug of it was sometimes a little more than I could handle that quickly.

Before it arrived, they sent me an email with some advice and warnings - the thing about the salt was in there, but the big thing was a warning that some people were having issues with flatulence. It sounded like that was mostly people who switched over from a ramen diet to an only-soylent diet abruptly, though. I only had it for a few meals, and I didn't seem to have this issue.

Overall, a positive experience. I don't really plan to replace food any time soon, but I've ordered another box of seven pouches (much faster delivery once you're in the system and have your 'starter kit') to try it out a bit more, it's been a nice convenience to have in the pantry.

Any questions?

will
11-06-2014, 08:00 AM
http://foodnetwork.sndimg.com/content/dam/images/food/fullset/2014/6/9/0/RX-HE_soylent-pouch-and-glass-cropped.jpg.rend.sni18col.landscape.jpeg

This is what it looks like in liquid form.

upupdowndown
11-06-2014, 09:14 AM
dude, how's your energy level been? have you been tempted to try a few all Soylent days in a row For Science (tm)?

will
11-06-2014, 09:34 AM
dude, how's your energy level been? have you been tempted to try a few all Soylent days in a row For Science (tm)?

I haven't noticed any serious side effects that I can extract from the noise. Maybe felt a little more energetic for a bit? Maybe felt a little gross and under the weather a while later? Nothing I can really pin down to the soylent.

That seems a little weird when I think about it, given that I was getting 2/3 of my meals in slurry form at times. I think I might try the all-soylent thing for a bit with this next batch, and see if I can isolate any unusual effects!

Patrick
11-06-2014, 01:02 PM
I love that it includes something called 'food oil.' I'd like to know more about how it tastes when combined with other food, when you have some more experience with that.

Lady
03-23-2015, 10:25 PM
I ordered some 100% Food. (their nutritional info seemed better composed and their portion of iron more generous?) We'll see how far down the rabbit hole I get! I'm tired of being addicted to food

Vega
03-28-2015, 06:05 PM
Now that I'm pursuing a vegan, whole foods-leaning diet I have mixed feelings about soylent. On one hand I like being able to treat food as strictly utilitarian and getting all of the USRDA of nutrients from a single food item. On the other, I've heard from various people that it's healthier to eat whole foods than processed foods and soylent sounds pretty processed, especially its vitamins and minerals. I also wonder how much natural resource had to go into creating a daily batch of soylent compared to a well-rounded daily batch of whole foods. I'm saying all this as someone who hasn't eaten soylent yet. I'm currently catching up on Colleen Patrick Goudreau's Food for Thought podcast and I'm looking forward to when she talks about Soylent.

Lady
03-30-2015, 07:31 PM
I ordered some 100% Food. (their nutritional info seemed better composed and their portion of iron more generous?) We'll see how far down the rabbit hole I get! I'm tired of being addicted to food

Had 1/4 cup at breakfast and another 1/4 at lunch. I mixed it up then put it in the freezer for about half an hour to make kind of a chewy sludge.

Googleshng
08-15-2015, 02:14 PM
Just looking at the Wikipedia page the alarm bells are everywhere.

Modifications to the ingredient list have occurred in response to results incurred in testing, for example: the first version of the formula omitted iron, which Rhineheart reported caused his heart to race.

A man who wasn't immediately aware of a extremely common, sometimes serious medical condition like anaemia is trying to create a food replacement via trial and error.

Well I was a big ol' naysayer for quoting this constantly and urging people to avoid this stuff. The new formulation goes one better than including iron! It has lead! (http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/as-you-sow-files-notice-of-legal-action-against-soylent-super-food-300128427.html)

Which honestly goes a long way to explaining that blog post he recently wrote about stuff like saving water and energy by importing a fresh custom suit from China every day and throwing it out rather than wash his clothes. (http://robrhinehart.com/?p=1331)

Lady
08-15-2015, 02:23 PM
Interesting; I wonder if it was something new with how they were sourcing the material for the current version, or if it had been in the previous ones all along. Also wonder if it's present in the other brands that have popped up!

Great blog post though; the guy is a certified nut.

Googleshng
08-15-2015, 03:01 PM
I would think, given Rhineheart's rather on-his-sleeve love for unregulated lowest-possible-cost material sourcing, and never getting FDA approval, that the amount of lead and cadmium varies from batch to batch, and anyone who has been living exclusively off this... "food replacement" from a delusional idiot who thinks you don't use any gasoline if you call a car service, don't need iron in your diet, and consulting with nutritionists is for chumps... likely has ingested quite a large amount of things you really don't want in your body over the last year and change.

Seriously, I don't know how anyone has ever rationalized the risk there, given the iron thing.

ajr82
08-15-2015, 03:16 PM
I would think, given Rhineheart's rather on-his-sleeve love for unregulated lowest-possible-cost material sourcing, and never getting FDA approval, that the amount of lead and cadmium varies from batch to batch, and anyone who has been living exclusively off this... "food replacement" from a delusional idiot who thinks you don't use any gasoline if you call a car service, don't need iron in your diet, and consulting with nutritionists is for chumps... likely has ingested quite a large amount of things you really don't want in your body over the last year and change.

Seriously, I don't know how anyone has ever rationalized the risk there, given the iron thing.

But it's so efficient!

Dadgum Roi
08-15-2015, 04:58 PM
Rhinehart embodies pretty much every bad stereotype of the messianic Silicon Valley TED Talker.

BTW, wait for *my* new app, Eatr, which anonymously pairs you with a healthy food product located within a certain radius of your location.

Vaeran
08-17-2015, 12:16 PM
The new formulation goes one better than including iron! It has lead! (http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/as-you-sow-files-notice-of-legal-action-against-soylent-super-food-300128427.html)[/URL]

Can I even tell you how happy I am that there is a terrible secret about what is in Soylent

Torzelbaum
08-17-2015, 02:53 PM
It's full of people toxic heavy metals!

shivam
08-17-2015, 03:04 PM
so i've been researching further, and the people claiming it has lead and shit are basically well known for frivolous lawsuits against all sorts of food companies for prop 65 violations. this one's just easier to want to believe because we all hate soylent dude.

Paul le Fou
08-17-2015, 05:51 PM
Hmmm... well, until the jury's in about it, I'll ignore the alarmism and just keep on never eating Soylent once in my life.

Lady
08-17-2015, 06:43 PM
Guys I drank 100% Food (http://www.spacenutrientsstation.com/) for lunch today and now I've started to feel hollow inside, like there's too much water sloshing through my plumbing. My nail polish started chipping while I was picking at my teeth and it tasted strangely sweet. And I've got this urge to crawl into a tight metal chamber while someone sets off an explosion behind me...

Guild
06-15-2016, 10:53 PM
WHAT THE FOOD TALKING TIME

YOU DON'T CHEW REPLACE ???

https://s31.postimg.org/5gtlaiqaz/111.jpg

GET WITH 2016 NEXT LEVEL !!!

https://www.soylent.com/ <<<

My box arrived today. It's white.

The nutrition label - no lead !!!

https://s31.postimg.org/pyzmpy7yj/112.jpg

Expires next year and I've had 2

https://s31.postimg.org/jm68rojuz/113.jpg

They make me feel like I just ate!

I've got the thanksgiving sleepies!

Falselogic
10-13-2016, 12:26 PM
AHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHA (https://www.buzzfeed.com/nicolenguyen/soylent-food-bars-might-be-making-some-people-throw-up?utm_term=.tyGDZ23k4#.fqBWgVKpD)



AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHHAHAHAH (https://www.buzzfeed.com/blakemontgomery/soylent-recalls-bars-after-reports-they-made-people-sick?utm_term=.wgyENYDMJ#.wq0yn4YPM)


AHAHAHAHAHHHAHHA

*throws up violently*

krelbel
10-13-2016, 01:25 PM
I liked drewtoothpaste's take (http://theworstthingsforsale.com/2016/10/11/the-soylent-food-bar-might-kill-you/):

Soylent, a product named after the fictional product Soylent from the movie “Soylent Green” (and originally the book “Make Room! Make Room!”) was to be a nutritional shake you would drink instead of eating meals. Even though such a thing already exists, “lifehackers” picked up the Soylent drink and ran with it, the idea being that our lives are so busy with work and leisure that food gets in the way. The company sold millions of dollars of Soylent, despite the fact that the product was initially made in a converted factory building that contaminated the powdered version of the product with mold and heavy metals.

A couple of years later, Soylent released Food Bar, the Repo Man-styled block of solid food that enables you to… uh… not eat food, I guess. This product also obviously exists in every gas station and supermarket on the planet, usually in the form of a protein bar. But this didn’t stop the lifehackers, who bought it, and ate it, despite it making them ill. Some users vomited after consuming Food Bar, some had diarrhea, and the luckiest Food Bar consumers experienced both. The company insists this is due to everyone having an intolerance to one of the ingredients, while many users suspect contamination of Food Bar has led to Food Poisoning. They continue to eat Food Bar, tracking their horrifying symptoms in spreadsheets, unaware that being tricked into sickness by a company telling them they don’t have to eat food might not have increased their productivity after all.

Büge
10-13-2016, 02:25 PM
Sorry, I only eat food in bar form. When you concentrate food, you unleash its awesome power, I’m told. That’s why I’m compressing 5 pounds of spaghetti into one handy mouth-sized bar!

98ViBJzPmqs

Dadgum Roi
10-13-2016, 06:17 PM
I liked drewtoothpaste's take (http://theworstthingsforsale.com/2016/10/11/the-soylent-food-bar-might-kill-you/):

So is it made out of freeze-dried Taco Bell beef or...

muteKi
10-16-2016, 12:05 PM
I've already reserved my parking spot in hell for this one

http://i.imgur.com/tEkhL8ql.jpg

Ahamkara
10-16-2016, 04:00 PM
I liked drewtoothpaste's take (http://theworstthingsforsale.com/2016/10/11/the-soylent-food-bar-might-kill-you/):

I like this take, too.

I've already reserved my parking spot in hell for this one

this hurts

why would you post this


why