I fell upon Soylent news just recently, and am incredibly impressed with the progress, and particularly that volunteer testing is already underway. While I think the critics are correct about the current formulas likely not containing everything necessary to completely replace food, I think it likely is better than a lot of the terrible diets people have, and with so many willing testers it’ll simply get better.
I love that it removes a lot of the hidden variables that various other attempts to study dietary requirements have, and I really look forward to seeing the future of this product.
Now that my praise and excitement for the project is out of the way, I have a specific question, one that I think many people have been asking about Soylent:
Will it support athletic builds? I mean, considering I’m at sub-10% bodyfat and the BMI scale considers me obese, I’d assume that my nutritional profile is going to be quite different that the “norm,” particularly if I want to continue to gain, or at least maintain my current muscular mass.
While many others have already discussed limited protein, amino acid profiles, etc, I’m particularly interested in how Soylent would affect the hormones necessary for muscular growth and maintenance, particularly testosterone.
Art of Manliness provides a fairly in-depth overview of the necessary pieces to maintain solid testosterone production, and Tim Ferriss in Four Hour Body also took quite a bit of time to talk about it.
The blaring issue I see with Soylent is the lack of much Cholesterol in the current build. Since various studies(see Mark’s Daily Apple, “The Definitive Guide to Cholesterol”) have shown that dietary cholesterol doesn’t negatively affect health, and is actually necessary for good testosterone production.
Us geeky-types are already struggling to avoid the stereotype by studying up on bodybuilding and trying to optimize our fitness routines, it’d be a shame to leave Soylent reducing the body’s ability to produce a manly-man due to lack of cholesterol
EDIT: I’d be particularly interested in seeing testosterone levels for the few people who have been extensively testing it up until now. Tests aren’t super fast, but I think it’d be interesting data.