DIY Recipes for extreme obesity


#1

Does anyone have a Soylent recipe for a 25-year-old 6’2" obese (385 lb) male? My husband is considered morbidly obese (I hate that term), and I am struggling to find a DIY Soylent recipe for him or create one from a template. In my experimentation, the vitamins/minerals/micronutrients often go way over the max before the macronutrients are up to the proper levels. He has no health problems yet aside from his obesity (no blood pressure/blood sugar/etc problems).
Currently, neither of us have tried Soylent, but I created my own recipe based off of Chocolate Silk by @hharris. I want him to be able to use Soylent if he becomes interested, but I couldn’t find any recipes for extremely obese males in my search. Any help is appreciated, especially since I’m new at this!

Here’s his nutrient profile, if it’s helpful, based on Rob’s recommendation for losing weight. (I’m also open to suggestions for his profile.)

Thanks!

Macro Nutrients Amount Max
Calories (kcal) 3072
Carbohydrates (g) 384
Protein (g) 192
Total Fat (g) 85
Saturated Fat (g) 0
Monounsaturated Fat (g) 0
Polyunsaturated Fat (g) 0
Omega-3 Fatty Acids (g) 0.75 3
Omega-6 Fatty Acids (g) 1.5 17
Total Fiber (g) 40
Soluble Fiber (g) 0
Insoluble Fiber (g) 0
Cholesterol (mg) 0 300

Vitamins Amount Max
Vitamin A (IU) 5000 10000
Vitamin B6 (mg) 2 100
Vitamin B12 (ug) 6
Vitamin C (mg) 60 2000
Vitamin D (IU) 400 4000
Vitamin E (IU) 30 1500
Vitamin K (ug) 80
Thiamin (mg) 1.5
Riboflavin (mg) 1.7
Niacin (mg) 20 35
Folate (ug) 400 1000
Pantothenic Acid (mg) 10
Biotin (ug) 300
Choline (mg) 550 3500

Minerals Amount Max
Calcium (g) 1 2.5
Chloride (g) 3.4
Chromium (ug) 120 600
Copper (mg) 2 10
Iodine (ug) 150 1100
Iron (mg) 18 45
Magnesium (mg) 400
Manganese (mg) 2 11
Molybdenum (ug) 75 2000
Phosphorus (g) 1 4
Potassium (g) 3.5 6
Selenium (ug) 70 400
Sodium (g) 2.4 2.4
Sulfur (g) 2
Zinc (mg) 15 40


#2

First - kudos to the both of your for trying to get ahead of this before he has health issues. Also, at age 25, his hormonal mix is still tapering down from “growing” to “normal adult…” It will continue to gradually get harder for him to lose some of that weight if he doesn’t do it now.

On the micronutrients - I’d suggest not worrying about small excesses too much. I realize that a great deal of his excess weight is fat, which isn’t nutritionally demanding, but he will also have a lot more lean body tissue than people of average weight. Even if he lost all the excess fat, at 6’2", he’ll probably still be well above the average size used to calculate the Daily Values.

My practical advice:

  1. If you take any formula that’s reasonably balanced at 2000 kcal per day, and scale it up to provide 3000 kcal per day, you’ll be fine on all the micronutrients, and don’t fret if they look “high.”

  2. When scaling the recipe up, consider bumping the protein and fat a little more than the carbohydrates. The numbers above point to a ratio of 50/25/25 for carb/protein/protein. If you bump that more towards 40/30/30, it will be more satiating for him and more sparing of lean tissue as he loses weight.

The satiation issue will matter more as he starts to lose weight; his body is becoming accustomed to being 385 pounds, so after he loses a couple dozen pounds, the reduction in leptin (which is produced by fat) can start making him feel hungry a lot more easily, making it harder and harder to stick to a diet plan.


#3

Just some thoughts for you:

The biggest struggle your going to have is satiety. I hate “assumptions” but I’m going to assume here in that your husband has grown accustomed to eating large meals and also to feeling “full”. This is the HARDEST thing to let go of, the tying of satisfaction to feeling “full” because on soylent it’s not going to happen. Eating till your full really means continuing to eat even after having a “meals worth”. Adjusting the physical and mental expectation to “I’m hungry and I drank my shake, I still want food” to something more like “I drank my shake, I if I just wait 20-30 minutes my hunger will slowly fade away”.

That being said, recipe wise the biggest recommendation I can make for any recipe is that you consider Casein protein as part of your blend. Not as your ONLY protein mind you, but I would strong consider doing 50-60 grams a day. Unlike whey and other isolates casein is considered a “slow release” protein. It digests much slower and has the added benefit of keeping appetite at bay longer. In your macro’s you listed 192 grams of protein, so incorporating 50-60 grams of Casein as part of a protein blend shouldn’t be a problem.

Where you get you calories after that though is going to be challenging. You also need to take into account activity level. My goal now is still to cut fat but to do so without sacrificing lean muscle tissue. I’m an athletic weight lifter but still need to lose 30 pounds to get to my ideal body composition. Accordingly I have found my best success with a zone style diet (33/33/33 carbs/protein/fat) but in your husbands case if he’s not trying to gain strength or improve his athleticism and is instead focused solely on diet then a ketogenic recipe might work best…

Fair warning - in my experience Keto recipes taste and have the mouth feel of wet garbage. I don’t mean to be hyperbolic, I started with straight people chow, which is recipe I would say, about half of my friends couldn’t stand and the other half said they could live on it but wouldn’t choose to, I on the other hand enjoyed people chow just fine. When I tried a Keto recipe I hated everything about it. Taste was poor, mouth feel was poor, etc. I’m just saying this to establish two things. One - Does your husband WANT to do this? soylent SUCKS compared to real food, especially the good stuff he’s probably eating now. So his willingness and commitment is arguably the most important thing. Second - I wouldn’t start with Keto. If I had started with Keto I would likely have quit soylent. Instead I knew it could be better and simply gave up on making a keto recipe work. Instead I found a better balance of cutting carbs and increasing protein (and added other sources of protein such as Casein and Soy) that finally led me to my happy place today.


#4

If your looking for a recipe I made one for you. Its low carb and not as cheap per day as I would like because of all the protein but it should get your husband going. Its designed for a man of his age and size who is looking for rapid weight loss. You may want/need to add flavoring to make it taste better. When I first started using a similar recipe I didn’t much like it but as my taste buds adjusted it began tasting pretty good. You can copy my recipe over to your DIY account by clicking the copy recipe button and then play with it.

The fact that the recipe is low carb will result in a rapid weight loss at first as he loses water weight. After that his weight loss will slow to a “reasonable” rate then eventually stop. When it does stop come back and lower the calorie count and the weight loss will continue. Keep repeating till he reaches his goal weight.


#5

I’ve come from a place pretty similar to where he is now. I’m a little older at 37, a little shorter at just over 6’, and I don’t think I ever broke 360, the highest I remember reading on my scale was 356, but I may have.

I started soylent (at ~330 lbs) in January when the company delayed shipping, and have been DIYing ever since. I did get some of the factory Soylent and liked it, but didn’t like the macro ratio, so have pretty much gone back to just DIY, or heavily modified Soylent. Along the way I have written a plethora of recipes for myself, with the goal of weight loss, and have been experimenting to find a keto soylent (~40 recipe variations into keto so far), and have just about got it where I want it, but keto recipes are hard to get palatable. I don’t know if you’re familiar with keto, it may or may not work for him, but it eliminates most carbs, which can benefit weight loss quite nicely. I’ve gone full keto twice this year for about two weeks each, and really liked it, but just couldn’t sustain it with the recipes I tried. I do think I’m ready to do it again though.

You are of course welcome to any of my recipes, there are more if you’re interested, I just haven’t made them public, and I’d be glad to help design something specific for him. The hybrid recipes listed are where I started and I really did like them. You will need to increase the calories a bit if you want to get over 3k, which is fairly easy to do with the fats, I use MCT oil to adjust my calories without messing up the micro nutrients, and as an added bonus it’s said to aid in weight loss.

I do recommend that you be open to adjusting the caloric level up or down as needed, I have found that for myself there has never been an accurate calorie calculator. I am currently at ~1500 kcal/day, and am losing ~1.5 lbs/week. When I started at 330 lbs I tried 1800 kcal and found that it was still to high, so had to drop it to 1600 kcal to really see any results. I am down to 280 lbs after 10 months of soylent, and don’t regret for a moment making this change.

You both will learn a ton if you decide to DIY, I know I have. The community here has been exceptionally helpful, please don’t hesitate to ask anything.


#6

Thank you for your reply and support. You made a very good point that I had not considered - since he is larger, he can tolerate more vitamins/minerals. It did not occur to me that his nutrient profile did not adjust the micronutrients up in light of his weight. I just checked and realized they’re the exact same as mine (a 5’6", 150 lb female)!
You make a good point about the macronutrient ratios, and I will definitely keep that in mind if he decided to really get into Soylent.


#7

Thank you @Endtropy for replying. I actually hadn’t thought too much about satiety since the article I read about Soylent that originally led me here stated it was a filling substance, but both my husband and I often have difficulties restraining from overeating. Especially when we start becoming lazy in our cooking and/or leaving out vegetables, which make a huge difference. So far, we tend to overeat healthy foods, but overeating is overeating.
I have heard a great deal about Casein protein, and one of my close friends has a lot of experience using it, so I’ve come to understand the importance of slower digesting foods. Thank you for the reminder, because I had completely overlooked that idea since I was so focused on just getting all the nutrients in the right range (so tedious!).
My only experience with keto eating was that same close friend of mine did an entirely ketogenic non-Soylent diet for a while and eating or drinking carbs made him sick since his body had adapted. I don’t think my husband or I would be able to limit our carbs so extensively. We both have too many carb-based foods that we love, and most of them are not unhealthy (bread, etc.). Right now, I think we’re focused on changing how we’re eating in a way that maintains our morale. Kudus to you on your dedication! In terms of his commitment, neither of us are truly on board yet, but we are curious enough to try it for awhile and see how it goes. If I can find a not-terrible tasting recipe, I will try it for at least one meal a day for a few weeks to see how I am affected. If the effects are mostly positive (in terms of energy, weight, etc), and they outweigh the side effects, I would continue to replacing two meals per day, etc. My husband said that he would be interested in replacing one meal per day (again, if the recipe were tolerable). We are both looking for convenience, and counting calories can become exhausting. I think Soylent would help us both since we would be able to make a day’s worth of food the night before and instead of wondering what to eat and how much and in what combination, we can just drink some Soylent…period. I am very excited for our ingredients to come on Wednesday and see how it goes. Feel free to check it out (it’s called Chocolate Velvet); I’m always open to feedback. (This recipe is for me. I haven’t finished his yet.) Thanks again!


#8

You won’t need the MSM currently in your recipe, the whey protein has sufficient sulfur at 4.6g of SAA’s per 100g of whey isolate, and you should also be getting a bit more from the rice flour. SAA’s are the amino acids where we get our sulfur.

You should also know that some of the profiles for your ingredients are not complete, your whey protein for instance does not account for all of the micro ingredients that are in the protein. I haven’t looked through the rest, but highly recommend you check the accuracy for all of your ingredients. You can potentially overdose if your ingredients are not correct, as there is no way to see what you are actually getting for your micronutrients. This may account for the missing nutrients as well, giving you a complete recipe.

The USDA has a good database that will give a lot more detail than any of the product nutrition labels.


#9

I second @kennufs’s comment on the MSM - that’s something that has been discussed here, before. The Sulfur entry does not belong on the page at all, it should be SAA - Sulfur-Containing Amino Acids - and in practice, if you get your daily allotment of protein, you can’t miss on the SAA’s, unless you’re using a very weird and unbalanced protein source, like gelatin. In case you care, cysteine and methionone are the two amino acids that provide our sulfur needs.

Like you, I ordered my MSM powder from Amazon before learning this. Amazon was happy to take them back. You may even have the same bottle I had! :smile:

I don’t agree with Kennufs that there’s any credible risk of “overdose,” but I’m a big fan of getting all the possible details in there. You may have already done that, because as I look at your recipe, it looks like there’s a lot of micro info in there.

Lastly, I was having a hard time figuring out where all that fiber is coming from, and then I saw the cocoa powder line… holy wow, that’s a lot of cocoa powder, isn’t it? If this recipe works, it’s going to be a treat to drink…

Two other comments:

You might get a lot of settling overnight, because you didn’t include xanthan gum or guar gum or psyllium husk. These are commonly used soluble fibers - xanthan gum, especially, is known as a great thickener that also keeps your mix from settling, without impart any taste or texture, aside from the thickening. Psyllium husk is the greatest thickener, but depending on your source, it may add little flecks. I don’t notice the flecks, but other people feel its bad for the texture.

Since this is looking like hot cocoa - you can try microwaving it for a hot treat. I sometimes nuke my DIY. You can drink it if you make it warm, but if you nuke it too long, the whey protein will solidify like a recipe with egg protein in it, and you end up with something I consider spoon bread. On the plus side, I’ve made delicious spoon bread. :smile:

Have fun with your experiments!


#10

Wow, thank you so much for the recipe! That looks pretty spot on. I’ve read from a couple people that rapid weight lose for obese people can lead to skin problems and more stretch marks and skin looseness. Has that been your experience as well? I know he is fine losing weight slowly if it has benefits.


#11

Rapid weight loss does not lead to new stretch marks, but it can expose existing stretch marks that aren’t obvious because the skin is currently stretched out. It’s like pushing together the skin around a wrinkle; it makes the wrinkle deeper and more prominent, but if you stretch out the skin, the wrinkle disappears.

He will definitely get some skin looseness as he loses weight, but whether it’s a problem depends on how well his body carried/distributed the fat when he had it, and how well his skin tightens up as he loses the weight. His young age should help - I have a mid-40’s friend who is not so fortunate; he lost about 200 pounds, much of it very rapidly on a PSMF diet, and wore spandex workout shirts as undergarments most of the time to hold things in place.

I suspect the skin will eventually recover as much as it’s going to recover, after more time passes, so you’ll end up in the same place - if you’re going to have a problem eventually, you’re going to have a problem eventually, regardless how quickly you lose the weight - but if your weight loss outpaces the progress rate your skin is capable of, you have problems on the way down, as well as at the end. Again, because of his age, he may be fine - but if not, the only fix I’m aware of is surgery. Another good reason to lose some of that weight now.

Skin aside, there are a number of health benefits to losing the weight relatively slowly… but at his size, he should be able to get started and lose fat quickly for the first couple of months, with no downside. When he gets below 300 pounds, it might be prudent to take stock and think about slow and steady for the long haul. Also, while his skin will get looser, I doubt that he’ll have any “problem” in that regard until he’s getting down closer to the 200 pound range.


#12

Its my understanding that stretch marks happen when a person grows faster than their skin can stretch. Think pregnancy. People who lose to quickly can have saggy skin for a while. 3.5 years ago I lost 35 pounds in 6-7 months and didn’t notice any skin issues. But then again I wasn’t looking for any. If your husband would rather lose weight slowly I can alter the recipe accordingly, no problem.

The taste of the recipe as is reminds me of Cherrios. I would recommend using a flavored protein powder to make it taste better. The one in the recipe is unflavored and can seem a little blah at first till your tastebuds adjust.


#13

Thank you so much @MentalNomad and @kennufs for all the information and support! I am always open to feedback and interested in learning new things, even if it goes over my head the first (few hundred) times.
I had a lot of trouble with the micronutrients, even using the USDA database. This was due, in part, because I wanted to use some of the ingredients that I had leftover from previous eating endeavors that were taking up space (storebrand whey protein, pb powder, etc), and while the USDA has similar products, the macronutrients were often off, so I opted to enter these ingredients manually. However, the only info I had was on the back of the container or the internet, which often leaves out many micronutrients. Should I just copy the micronutrients from similar ingredients in the USDA database? I wasn’t sure how to get the missing info. I want to pay attention to micronutrient levels, in part for overdose caution, but also because I would imagine that higher levels can quickly affect the positive effects of drinking Soylent, even if not at toxic levels (ie, higher levels of some micronutrients lead to lower energy, more headaches, or something).
That’s extremely helpful info on the MSM levels; I never would have realized that.
@MentalNomad, I am very much hoping it will taste chocolatey and sweet, but since that’s actual baking cocoa, not cocoa powder (although there’s a little of that too), I’m very worried it’s going to be extremely bitter. That’s why I tried to squeeze in multiple sweet ingredients (honey, hot cocoa powder, brown sugar, etc), though there’s not too much.
I’m not too worried about settling overnight unless it affects the texture or nutrients. If it just requires shaking, that’s okay. I have a blender cup and an actual blender that should work okay. That’s interesting info about thickening agents, though, another thing I hadn’t even considered (I’ll have to make a list).
Ha, spoon bread! I’ve always thought “man this bread is good, but why can’t it come in liquid form?” (not!)


#14

The micronutrients can be tough. I’ve chosen to default to the USDA database when there’s a doubt, as they have verified the ingredients. The manufacturer is not required to list everything on the nutrition label and often they will round their numbers. I would still use the nutrition label if the product has any added ingredients, for example a pure whey isolate would probably be best taken from the USDA unless the manufacturer shows good reason to go with just their numbers, however if the manufacturer fortifies the micros, or has any other additives they need to be accounted, in which case I would start with the USDA as a base and then add the remaining items from the manufacturers info.

Loose skin, yeah… I think I’ll have at least some trouble with that, hopefully not enough to need surgery though. I do agree that your husband may come out OK since he is so young though, but he may have some still, and it may take a few years for it to tighten up.

As to the cocoa, I used it in most of my recipes and love it, though I think you may find that much to be a bit overpowering, I’m usually at 15-25g. Let us know how you like it once you’ve tried it out. I’ve never tried the P2B, but that may help mellow the cocoa a bit too. When I started I did the Hybrid recipe linked above, which is a modified Hacker School recipe, and it used some brown sugar as well. The cocoa and brown sugar go well together and you may find that you don’t need the honey.


#15

Oh, because if the carb level, I mistakenly presumed it was a sweetened cocoa… Well, there’s always a lot of experimentation in new recipes! Enjoy the ride, if you can.


#16

I’m skinny. I learned a lot about my appetite while happily on a mostly Soylent diet.

I realized that I don’t consciously enjoy the experience of eating real food, unless it’s unusually good or unique. Still, I get the occasional craving that I must obey, in spite of my desire to avoid spending or food coma (which I don’t get from Soylent). Other people may get these irrational cravings less/more often. I also learned that I tend to pig out when I have real food. It’s not that I feel like I’m starving on Soylent, but because it’s a habit/reflex. It’s this compulsive feeling that eating isn’t over until I’ve completely filled myself.

One thing I can recommend is adding extra water. If you add the daily required proportion of water, he’ll have more to sip on. Highly diluted Soylent is actually also the greatest “energy drink”. Just keep it in a shaker, because dilution causes it to settle faster.


#17

Yeah that would be the most amazing Soylent ever - 60 + grams of hot cocoa mix. If only! There is also some hot cocoa mix in there though. I just tried my recipe (slightly modified) today and it is really good actually. I didn’t need as much baking cocoa as I thought (thank goodness!). It tastes like dark chocolate brownie batter - a little gritty, mostly sweet, but not as sweet as regular milk chocolate brownie batter would be. I didn’t have honey so I switched it out with sugar free maple syrup. I didn’t realize the salt I have was NOT iodized either, but it didn’t make tooo much difference (obviously if I had iodized salt, I’d use it, but I don’t feel the need to go buy any).
I am a little concerned about the sugar level - about 46g of sugar per day is now twice what the World Health Organization recommends (although it used to be 50g, it’s now 25g). Side note: Why is sugar the only thing NOT listed in what is otherwise an extremely comprehensive list?!


#18

Because sugar isn’t an essential nutrient :smile: From what I’ve read Nick, the guy in charge of the DIY site, was supposed to add the ability to track any nutrient you want. No idea if or when he will add that in.


#19

@kennufs I meant to thank you before for all the recipes! (How do you link them by the way?) Also, congratulations on losing so much weight - you must be incredibly determined! You are definitely right about the community here too - you all have been so supportive; I am truly impressed!
In terms of micronutrients, I definitely intend to use the USDA database once I have to buy new ingredients. I want to get rid of the whey protein I had from before first.
I don’t know too much about skin problems from weight loss since I haven’t been obese, but I’ve seen others comment on it. I only care because I think it would bother him - I don’t care how he looks, as long as he’s healthy.
The recipe turned out pretty good! I don’t have anything to compare it too obviously, but I’m really impressed that something so nutritious can be tasty, too. Now all I need to do is find a way to lower the sugar content while keeping the calories up.
@horsfield Yeah I’m not a huge fan of plan Cheerios, though I think he is. (We both prefer honey nut of course.) He would prefer to lose weight slowly just since it feels healthier and more sustainable and gives the body time to adjust. It’s completely up to you if you’d like to modify the recipe. I don’t want to inconvenience you in any way. Thank you for the recipe you gave us; I was amazed at how spot on it is. Since I’m still so new, it’s taking me forever to get recipes even close to 100% complete. Thank you!
I hope they create an opportunity to add nutrients, especially sugar since it’s so important to overall health (the lack of it, I should say). It’d be helpful for people with diabetes or prediabetes too, I’d imagine, or for folks like me who just want to make sure they’re not eating way too much sugar.
@Davjdag I’m definitely in the other camp: I really enjoy eating food. I don’t know if I’d ever become interested in an entirely 100% Soylent lifestyle. I know one of my habits I’m hoping to break by using Soylent is eating for non-physical reasons, like boredom or stress. I’ve found very regimented diets helpful in that I don’t have to think about what to eat or consider macronutrient ratios throughout the day - it’s all planned out ahead and as long as I stick to it, I know I’m taking care of myself. I expect the same to happen with Soylent, so long as I can get through a few days of trying it out. Your comment about the energy drink idea reminded me of something - do you (or other folks) drink Soylent in meal fashion (it is lunchtime, time to drink a specific portion of Soylent) or do you sip it throughout the day whenever you feel like drinking something, or some combination of the two?


#21

Make sure he knows that.