(Edit: Sorry for the wall of text…)
I have no background with nutritional science, but have been doing “heavy” research this week (read: Google searches, forum posts, published articles/experiments) into what forms of various vitamins/minerals/omegas/phytonutrients, etc are optimally bioefficient as I prepare my own DIY recipe. To put it mildly… it’s been a tough road.
I’ve searched Reddit/DIY.Soylent forum for threads discussing primarily the bioavailability of the various nutrients but haven’t found many definitive answers. This quote from an article words my concerns well: “Various nutrients and dietary components interfere with the bioavailability of vitamins. Hence, requirements for vitamins cannot be considered independently, but must be evaluated in relationship to other nutrients and compounds consumed by an individual.” Article
What’s bothering me is that, for a given individual, there must be an optimally efficient form of a given nutrient (taking into consideration any potential conflict of other simultaneous nutrient sources), right? Take me for example as an individual: shouldn’t it be true that for, say, potassium, I will absorb/utilize either potassium gluconate or citrate (or even a different form) most efficiently? It’s science. What I certainly DON’T want is to make a recipe full of competing nutrient sources that aren’t optimally efficient at best and leaving me at risk for deficiency or adverse effects at worst, both short and long term. I am also trying to keep my nutrient intake relatively near the applicable DRI. Seeing 5000% of various nutrients causes me concern based on sources suggesting long term adverse effects.
How would I discover this for myself? What are my resources? I can and will make a best guess based on the information I have available so far, but my entire goal for soylent is nutrition efficiency and repeatable convenience. I want to craft my recipe, based on my individual needs, dependent upon what will give me the best results… obviously!
I understand this isn’t a simple concept. There are many other factors to consider including digestion (stinky farts, anyone?) and the long-term effects of a diet comprised primarily of chemical supplements seem to be largely debated or unknown. But I want to do the best I can given that with DIY I’m not held by other people’s diet limitations.
I also understand that I may be looking into this too deeply, but if I’m going to do this long term, I want to be as healthy and efficient as possible. Costs will just have to be managed, but I don’t want to cut any corners that can be avoided.
(Note: I am not vegan and have no known health complications; I am only interested in what nutrient forms will be the most efficient in concert with one another. My personal order of priority is: Macro ratios > micro efficiency > Preparation/Taste/Texture > cost (within reason, aiming for <$5 “meal”). I’m 25/m/150 lbs, with a horrible current Western diet, and weight gain goals. Anticipating a 70:30 Soylent:Food ratio in practice.)
Any insight, direction, opinion, or research links/calculators would be greatly appreciated! To me this is the greatest unknown part of this entire meal replacement experiment. (Thread also posted to /r/Soylent/)