Continuing the discussion from Blood Sugar Spike After Soylent:
I’m a little confused and a little concerned about the maltodextrin in Soylent 1.0. (I started writing this in reply to the above thread, and then decided to break it out into its own thread.)
I currently consume large amounts of a meal replacement shake that has a lot of added table sugar (sucrose), around 120g in a day’s supply when I’m using it as sole-source nutrition. My Soylent is on order and I am looking forward to it as being “healthier” in terms of “less sugar.”
2g of sugar in a serving of Soylent 1.0 according to the nutrition label, or 6g per day, sounds a lot better (“healthier”) to me than 120g of sugar in a day’s worth of Ensure Plus.
Yet reading about the DE and GI of maltodextrin, I’m not sure if it’s actually “better” or “healthier” than table sugar.
I guess my main concern for myself is “pancreas fatigue” and/or “insulin overload” rather than high blood sugar itself. I’ve done a bit of finger pricking for the blood sugar meter (not as much as the OP of the above thread! @CarltonLemley ) and it’s always basically normal (down around 100 a couple hours after a meal, and below 100 first thing in the morning).
Like @whitslack I get trembly palpitations after drinking my shakes (not Soylent, mine hasn’t arrived yet).
I understand that insulin can cause those symptoms, and can also cause weight gain, even if blood sugar is “normal” and overall calorie intake is within the recommended range.
Dextrose equivalent (DE) and glycemic index (GI) use dextrose (AKA glucose) as a baseline. Dextrose itself has a DE of 100, and a GI of 100.
The DE of maltodextrin is 10, and the GI of maltodextrin is 130. (According to the Soylent macronutrient overview blog post the GI of Soylent as a whole is still under research.)
Food with a high GI is what causes blood sugar spikes, accompanied (in non-diabetic persons) by an insulin spike (the body’s mechanism to bring down the blood sugar). (May also be affected by the glycemic load (GL) of a food, which is a function of the total amount eaten, and how many total carbs vs. fiber.)
I’m not actually sure what the significance of DE is in terms of how a substance is utilized by the body. (Anyone who knows more about this, please chime in.) I’ve seen a couple of posts that seem to imply that the “low” DE of maltodextrin of 10 is somehow “healthy” or “good” but it’s not clear to me that this is the case.
The 130 GI of maltodextrin is very high, higher than just about any other food substance.
As a comparison, table sugar (sucrose) has a DE of zero, and a GI of 65. It’s clear that table sugar can cause the trembles, blood sugar/insulin spikes, etc. that cause problems for some of us. Yet the DE and GI of table sugar are both lower than maltodextrin.
The above thread contains descriptions of consumers experiencing blood sugar spikes after consuming Soylent 1.0 (there have been a number of other posts describing similar symptom throughout this Discourse too).
I’m hoping to generate some general dialogue on the topic, but I’ll ask a couple specific questions to start:
Why maltodextrin in Soylent, as a basic unit to provide carbs, instead of plain ol’ table sugar? (As regards nutrition, as opposed to palatablity or taste “neutrality”; like almost everything, some people would like the taste of the sugar, some wouldn’t.)
Due to the maltrodextrin (and/or other ingredients, oat flour etc.), is Soylent likely to cause the blood sugar and insulin spikes I’m trying to avoid, perhaps more likely than the sugary meal replacement shakes I currently consume? Maybe even more likely to cause it than the candy, cakes, etc. which are (sadly) a main source of my calories when I’m not using a controlled replacement meal source?