Any black users of Soylent?


#1

Just curious: are there any folks on this board using Soylent who are black or african-american? If so, have you gotten blood tests done? Any negative results? In general, what is your experience of consuming the stuff?

Also, a question for anyone who knows more about nutrition then I do: Am I right to wonder if this product is equally healthy/effective for black folks, or is there some science/studies that indicate that racial differences are negligible or non-problematic in this case?

I ask because my overall impression of this community is that it’s very white. Black people have different health risks and health needs than white people, and those differences are frequently glossed over when things are tested on “most people” but most people doesn’t include any black people.

I’m very much hoping to hear that Soylent is nutritionally fine for black folks as well as white folks and that this was tested out in the same way that the differences between men and women was. But I don’t want to assume it’s ok, cause this is my health we’re talking about, eh?

So, anyway, any information anyone has about the experience of black people using this product would be most welcome. Thanks!


#2

sir may i ask how old you are and if you have finished school?
and how is a forum generally “white”?
Why would your color of your skin mater if food is healthy?
black, white, yellow, brown or read; they all use the same nutrients
and all differences is more a personal thing
this will fit for 90% of all humans on this planet


#3

I can’t speak for others. I will however chime in on your concerns. You are right to be curious about this point. However, the differences between individuals of different genetic backgrounds is typically less than the differences between any two other animals because (as a species) humans are more homogeneous than most other species. Generally a healthy diet is a healthy diet for all humans, with some noticeable variations by gender, but not by genetic heritage. That being said, the risk for certain genetic disorders do vary depending on genetic lineage. The risk factors can also vary, but it can sometimes be difficult to tell if this is a solely biological factor or one associated with other environmental factors. All of that being said, medical information on non-Caucasian individuals and non-male individuals is typically less well developed. So, it is good to keep an eye out.


#4

I believe he addressed this question legitimately:
“Black people have different health risks and health needs than white people, and those differences are frequently glossed over when things are tested on “most people””

Provided that we can keep this conversation on the point of genetics and science, and not meander into the philosophical/political/economic quagmire, the OP brings up a good question: Does this food address the health concerns of various people and their genetic variances?

I didn’t spend much time, but here’s an article that mentions some research papers that might pertain. I don’t have time to dig into it, just offering it up for discussion:


"it can be hard to know how exactly to eat like a caveman. Which cave? A good diet may depend on where your ancestors’ digs were located."


#5

but then it’s more of your genetics and not because your black or what race. consider that quite a lot of people a re a “mixture” of different races and not a clean “race” so to say.
'it’s probably impossible to make a diet that covers 100%of all humans, But i speculate that the differences between a african man and a European man, asian man or a n american man is probably sow smal and not important in the grand picture.

Soylent is not a Diet like the Paleo or the LCHF or the like, but it’s a food consisting of all things that the human body needs (DRI) the DRI is not based on the minimal value that your body needs but with a large error correction to cover more people.
i believe also that it’s more differences between you and me then between blacks and europeans.


#6

Thanks for the helpful responses. I knew I was probably opening a can of worms even asking the question, but it’s science at the end of the day. What is science if not asking questions and looking for answers?

I’m not a nutritionist or geneticist, so I don’t claim to know the answers. However, the last time I got blood work done, there was a line in the results specifically indicating the appropriate levels of some item for African-Americans in particular. My doctor also regularly makes reference to these types of race-based differences when we are talking about my health needs. Those two things are what made me think it was a good question to ask.

I’m sure the most accurate info comes from knowing about specific genetic differences. But, absent me finding out my exact genetic makeup, knowing if there are scientifically-supported racial generalizations about health and nutrition seems useful. Knowing that there are not scientifically-supported racial generalizations because someone did a study and found no differences would also be useful.

The article @metab0lic linked to was quite interesting to me. It’s prompted me to do some more digging around about fats in particular, so thanks for the pointer!


#7

next time you visit your doctor, ask him of this racial differences and write down the information.
you kan ask him in what nutrients you differ; and bye how much.


#8

I would be shocked if there were any large differences in nutrition requirements by black people. Or asian, or any other ethnicity. Soylent is about meeting nutritional needs for the human animal, and I’ve never heard of any nutritional differences of the type you’re concerned about. You’ll have a wide spectrum of differences based on height, weight, gender, lifestyle, illness, and metabolic quirks, but black people are going to fit into the same spots along that spectrum as white people. Soylent was designed to cover a broad range of that spectrum.

I would talk to your doctor and begin by saying “so what would it do for my health to have a perfect diet, with all the vitamins and minerals?” and don’t even bring up Soylent until the end of the conversation. He may have some specific, targeted recommendations based on your personal medical history. If he says “because you’re black, you have X and Y different nutritional needs” ask him to explain those differences. Personal and family medical history are going to play the largest role.

I do know that black people in America, as a population, have a different set of risks and medical concerns, statistically speaking. That being said, those concerns are not based on race, but genetics, or culture… African Americans of non sub-Saharan descent have a similar incidence as other populations of sickle cell anemia, for example. And there’s a sociopolitically skewed ratio of lower income African Americans resulting in a false correlation of diabetes incidence when the real reasons are being low-income with limited access to good nutrition. Adjust the studies proportionally and those numbers line up to the expected rates for humans in general.

If you’re of average height, weight, and build, then Soylent as is should be great for your diet. If you’re smaller, you may need to lower your serving size. If you’re larger, you may need to supplement macronutrients. If you have specific medical conditions, Soylent gives your doctor a chance to target your needs in a precise way.

I’ve read a ton of nutritional studies and books and articles over the last 5 months. Talk to your doctor, and I’ll bet he gets excited. The only nutritional concern I’ve ever seen brought up is for Vitamin D3 levels, and recent studies suggest that getting the RDA is sufficient for any individual, regardless of race, and that there is a tendency to overdiagnose D3 insufficiency in the african American community.


#9

African american . Or african? . A difference in sodium but 100% RDA would still be fine.


#10

Thank you for asking this question. I was wondering the same thing given my tendency to have blood pressure that is a bit elevated. I also am a little concerned about the low protein. I would like to try it but want more feedback first.

For those who gave this person heck for asking the question, there is research to say that there are some nutritional needs differences. Not a bunch, but some, which is part of what was being asked. Even if there wasn’t a stitch of research that says that there are any differences at all, I was under the impression that this was a forum to ask questions and get answers. Not to ask questions and be treated poorly for doing so.

http://www.blackherbals.com/science_of_african_biochemistry.htm


#11

well we did ask him to speak to his doctor and ask about this differences he is talking about
and i think it’s more about genome and personal life style then race, that makes the different.


#12

I don’t think anyone gave him heck - it’s an excellent question and deserves attention.

With my response, I just wanted to express that I haven’t encountered any significant information relating race to unique dietary needs. Individual needs are the X factor across the board, and most trends correlated with race have their roots in geography and culture, as opposed to anything based on ethnicity.


#13

To be fair the nature of evidence does not lend itself in a modern scientific framework to ever directly asserting that a thing/difference does not exist.


#14

Except in the context of conveniently enumerable things. Evidence can easily clarify any racial differences in required potassium levels (or the absence of such a difference). Similarly it can easily clarify any racial differences in required B12 levels… etc.


#15

I don’t have any studies that @jmjm is looking for, but I’m skeptical that there’s anything anyone would need to worry about. Mostly because the DRIs were determined through studies on diverse sets of humans and are statistically significant enough to be accurate for 97% of the population.


That being said, the connection between diet and race itself isn’t insignificant. Our skin grew lighter as we left Africa to get more vitamin D. Europeans evolved to drink milk largely due to vitamin D. Inuits of northern Canada ought to have developed lighter skin too, except that their diet was rich in fish and vitamin D - so they stayed darker. (This is a good read that’s more thorough.)

So a white person who spends lots of time outside without a shirt might be fine with getting less than half of the DRI of vitamin D, but a black person who works behind a computer all day might need to be more careful about getting the full DRI. Soylent takes the guess work out of it, but alas, I have no links to proof.


#16

Yes, we can progressively approximate a quantifiable value until we are reasonably sure it is close enough to 0 that we don’t care. Most medical and nutrition statistics do not use this approach… but it is possible. Regardless, my comment was just about falsifiablity as a principle of science a la Popper and as such it was accurate.


#17

I would argue that its not skin color that makes the difference in nutrition, its genetics and lifestyle that makes the difference. In the end we are all 99.9% similar on the genetic level, that being said the human genome is long, and even the 0.1% can lead to some changes, but there is few nutritional changes. Most of these changes are things like height, skin color, eye color, immune system, etc.

The few nutritional things I can think about is with Lactose (sugar found in milk). By the age of 3 most Asian decedents can no longer break down lactose. This because the genes that regulate the proteins that break down lactose get turned off. If we check the history of why this happens is that the only milk producing mammals where us humans, and there was no other source of Lactose, so these proteins where no longer needed by the time the child was able to eat solid food.

I do not know if there is a similar issue with African decedents, but if you eat the same things everyone else does there is not much of a nutritional difference.

Lifestyle would make the largest nutritional difference, someone who works out 3 hours a day, every day, would need more than someone who sits at a desk all day.


#18

Not Asians in particular, but non European… fascinating stuff.