This is an anecdotal post about absorbing the protein in Soylent, but I’m interested in hearing other people’s experiences.
The point of the post is that liquid food passes through your system quicker than solids. Drink. Soylent. Slowly. Take about 2 hours to drink a bottle of 2.0.
I love Soylent, I drink both 1.5 or 2.0 for most meals. I’m a thin engineer ( I look like @rob ), but I’m physically inactive and I don’t require a lot of calories. Recently I wanted trying to put on some muscle so I upped calories, upped protein, upped activity. I’ve done this many times in the past and I’ve never had a problem putting on 10+ lbs. over a couple months. This is the first time I’ve done it on a Soylent diet, and progress was extremely slow. I fell into a routine of mixing PB and whey protein powder into a batch of 1.5 and bringing that to work for lunch. I would drink a 2.0 on the way to work.
I started noticing my urine was very frothy. Eventually I realized that the frothiness appeared after my Soylent meals. Frothy or foamy urine is an indication of protein being passed in the urine. Obviously this was a result of my upped protein intake, but it got me doing some experimenting and research. I could drink a cup of tea and go to the restroom without seeing any indications of foamy urine. An hour later, if I drink a bottle of 2.0 (within 10 or 20 minutes) and follow that with a cup of tea, urine has foam. So with just the off the shelf Soylent, I could see protein loss.
I searched around and came up with some rough numbers: we can absorb around 10g of protein an hour. I’m guessing that for myself it was probably even lower. So, the final amateur experiment was to drink 2.0 over a 2 hour time frame and check my urine. That helped. Froth is significantly decreased or not noticeable.
At this point I’m trying to stretch out the consumption process throughout the day, but it’s rough. I’m a chugger. I realize putting something in my stomach before Soylent will slow the rate that it passes through the GI, and I’m looking into supplementing with enzymes (specifically to get more protein). Apparently adding some milk (for fats and casein) is a common strategy for increasing protein absorption.
Obviously, this leads me to wonder about what else is getting flushed too quickly.