Different carbohydrate options


So I was taking a look at this longevity institute discussion of saccharides

We’ve been looking at carbohydrates simply from an energy perspective but, that might be short sighted, I won’t take a stand on any paleo / keto diet stuff that I’m not knowledgeable about but a quick review of most eneteral nutrition formulas (medical formulas used for people who can’t eat normally) shows that just as we are, its maltodextrin through and through, I’m seeing malted milk, corn syrup solids, hydrolyzed cornstarch, sugar alcohols and then just plain monosaccharides (fructose and glucose) . heres a breakdown comparison from a gastroenterologist publication in 2005

WITHOUT simply blenderizing food and adding it to the mix, does anyone have any ideas for other options? I’d like to get some diversity if I’m going to be putting lots of this in my body, I understand that my normal diet is basically corn /wheat/ potatos but to limit it directly to maltodextrin seems a bit…off.


Many protein and fiber sources have their own levels of carbohydrates as well. However, some have pointed out Isomaltulose as an alternative, along with a whole discussion on alternatives here.


One might (unsympathetically) say you don’t know what you want! You don’t want “blenderized food” but you’re not comfortable with limiting carbohydrate content to maltodextrin. What other options do you think there are? There are other industrial food carbohydrate ingredients than just maltodextrin but I suspect you might be equally uncomfortable with them.

(satire)You could just chuck some motor oil in your soylent! It’s all carbon, hydrogen and oxygen anyway, same difference, huh?(/satire) Back in the1950s Immanual Velikovsky got the scientific world all upset with his books World in Collision, Earth in Upheaval and Ages in Chaos, in which advocated “cataclysmic evolution.” They mocked him; he was a bit too much like Charles Fort. But modern evolutionary theory has justified Velikovsky at least to the extent of admitting that cataclysmic earth changes may have played a key role in some of the major extinctions of prehistory. Velikovsky tried to speculate on possible conjunctions of earth with comets and the planet Venus, drawing from the Old Testament and other ancient religious and folkloric sources. Velikovsky thought that the manna that fed the Israelites during their wanderings in the wilderness could have been hydrocarbon compounds from the tail of a comet in close conjunction with our planet.

If it’s totally synthetic carbs you want you’re still a wee bit early for the show. They are working on that, but it’s a tough job and ATM most of the emphasis appears to be on synthetic carbs as vehicles or adjuvants for vaccines. I find no page for “synthetic carbohydrate” in Wikipedia, nor any page for “synthetic food.” I’m not certain but I think they may have managed an edible oil or two, but no carbs yet.

I think we’re getting down to the nut-cutting now! It has taken a couple of months, though. Rob’s soylent idea in its conceptual purity is to create synthetic food, but the technology isn’t up to it yet., nor is our knowledge of nutrition sufficiently sophisticated. Attempts to ingest pure elemental “nutrients” usually provoke a big REJECT response from the body. So a practicable Soylent for the time being lies somewhere in the no man’s land between food ingredients and pure chemical “nutrients.”

To make a long story short, you’re asking for too much when you demand the exclusion of blenderised food. I started out in your camp but quickly realised it’s still a bit early for a pure chemically defined diet, and would demand research facilities that three-quarters of a million in kickstarter funds wouldn’t begin to buy. So I’m concentrating unashamedly on blenderised food for my own Soylent, and reaping the benefit of no adverse physical reactions no matter what changes I make in my formula – the body is quite tolerant towards food, or at least mine is. People with extensive food allergies, of course, are rather up a stump. Whether Rob’s concept of a Soylent that leans strongly towards the CDD will actually serve their needs or not still remains to be seen. One can hope!

Meanwhile you need to think about this and define your personal “search terms” a bit. What exactly is “off” about maltodextrin? What is unacceptable about blenderised food? And what alternatives do you see that do not involve combining the two opposed options to a greater or lesser extent? (Hey! Don’t drink that motor oil, I was only joking!)


While I would like to see a carb that has a lower Glycemic Index, I am still good with using malto.

My question like J_Jeffrey_Bragg is what is wrong with malto? Then what is wrong with blended food?
Personally I wouldn’t use blended food, but I am feeling quite comfortable with my recipe now.


Actually cheekiness appreciated, I grew up on monty python and vonnegut.

So I did read the post linked above by mrob, and I like what I see so I was thinking more along the lines of Isomaltulose (which if mixed in wouldn’t terribly add to costs) or another oligosaccharide / Galactooligosaccharide / Fructo-oligosaccharides , that can be purchased in bulk and is in syrup or powder form.

My problem with blenderized food is consistency and ease of chugging the glorp that would ensue, I ate this recipe for a week straight and actually felt real good , the problem was it was very dry and extremely time consuming, I could blenderize that, add some B12 and a little vanilla for taste and get everything my body needs for about 3.50 a day BUT the consistency would be…chunky.

I like the added health benefits (think GI flora, mineral absorption, immunity) of Oligosaccharides over disaccharides ontop of the slower release of sugar.

I was wondering if anyone else had explored this or perhaps found a commercial source.


I’m a great admirer of Kurt Vonnegut, too! Also Robert Anton Wilson and not to forget Robert A. Heinlein – all of them masters of cheekiness, each in his unique way

I sure can’t blame you for searching hard, schulte! Whoever comes up with a really good alternative will have done all of us a big favour. Like you, I feel that it must be hiding out there somewhere; wish I knew an industrial food chemist.

Yes, I liked Mike Turitzen’s article too. It would be quite chunky, agreed, if blendrised. My own “analogue” (i.e., food-based) recipe is working out quite well for me. I just need to let go of my own food obsessions for long enough to give it a fair trial as a stand-alone app, say a couple of weeks! (I hate to think of going without my morning hot cereal for that long, though.) It still needs some refining probably before it would be useful to others, making sure all ingredients are easily and generally available and bringing it more closely into line with other soylent recipes. The calories are slightly on the high side, as are some of the minerals, and I need to factor in a multivitamin; a good bit of housekeeping before it would be good to go as far as recommending it for others’ use. But it is reasonably nutritionally complete, could easily be made perfectly complete – and it is NOT chunky, nor is it in any way hard to take! Take a look at it, schulte, just to see how a food-based model can be approached without chunkiness – the only fresh ingredient in it ATM is a banana, which liquifies easily. Also you might like to take a look at @zach Alexander’s Hacker School Soylent which I think is a very elegant piece of work. You gain a good deal of flexibility by expanding your soylent to include more food ingredients (I say “more” because with the oils, the maltodextrin and the oat powder the food ingredients are already firmly in the mainstream recipe). Since a purely CDD is still beyond our reach, you might as well include whatever foods best fill the nutrient bill and gain the undeniable flavour boost that goes along with that.


I looked at the longevity institute’s article on saccharides and wanted to make some comments. The basic gist of the article is that there are eight saccharides and saccharide derivatives the body needs: Glucose, Galactose, Mannose, Fucose, Neuraminic N-acetyl acid, N-acetyl Glucosamine, N-acetyl Galactosamine, and Xylose. None of these are essential nutrients because all of them can be synthesized by the body. But the synthesis process does use up nutrients and it’s possible that sometimes the synthesis process may not be sufficient. For these reasons, the article author thinks you should seek out dietary sources of these nutrients.

The article doesn’t mention it, but in the supplement worlds these eight nutrients are generally known as “glyconutrients,” a name coined by the main producers of such supplements, Mannatech. There is significant skepticism about glyconutrient supplements, and specifically about Mannatech’s product Ambrotose. Ambrotose is a mix of 50% Larch Arabinogalactan and 10% each of Gum Tragacanth, Gum Ghatti, Glucosamine Hydrochloride, rice starch and Manapol. Aside from the glucosamine, the other ingredients are mostly indigestible (though they may have some prebiotic benefits); so Ambrotose is probably not a good source of these glyconutrients. Additionally, many scientists thinks that the body’s synthesis process works fine and that a healthy diet will provide all of these necessary nutrients.

On the other hand, some research has shown that supplementing with some of these nutrients alone can have benefits for certain conditions. For example, N-acetylglucosamine may be effective for the treatment of autoimmune diseases, glucosamine sulfate is possibly effective for the treatment of osteoarthritis, and Mannose is used for treating urinary tract infections.

In short, though it is certainly clear that these saccharides and saccharide derivatives are necessary for the body, it’s not clear whether supplementing with any of them is beneficial. There are supplements for glucosamine sulfate, arabinogalactan (which contains galactose), d-mannose and others. Evidence for their effectiveness is limited, though not nonexistent.