Help me pick a DIY Soylent


#1

Well, given that it looks like even further delays are about to be reported (Backerkit cutoff now 3/31…) I’m considering my options for a DIY version to tide us over in the meanwhile.

The main thing we’re concerned about it flavor/texture. We don’t want to spend a ton of money getting set up and find we’re totally dissatisfied with the result. Theoretically we won’t have to wait TOO long to get our Soylent, but until then, we want to try soylent.

So recommendations from those who have tried the various recipes would be much appreciated! (FYI, we’ll be needing about 2400-2600 kcal/day if that matters.)


#2

If you sort by the number of favorites on DIY Soylent, you’ll see the top recipes. I just took the #1 recipe, People Chow 3.0.1, and replaced the soybean oil with olive oil to account for my allergy.

After finding that People Chow 3.0.1 was too high-carb for my metabolism (I’ve been on a Paleo-ish diet for a couple years now) I started experimenting with my own recipe, cutting down the carbs and increasing protein and fat, which has been working better for me.

You can try my variant here: Ax Chow 1.0

Hope that helps! :slight_smile:


#3

As far as taste and texture, the consensus seems to be that oat flour seems to be more popular than masa harina, but the downside with oats is that they give a lot of people gas. :stuck_out_tongue:

What was recommended to improve the texture of masa harina is to let your homemade soylent sit in the fridge for at least half an hour after mixing it. That’s what I’ve been doing - I actually haven’t tried tasting it immediately after mixing. Maybe I should do that, just to see if there’s a difference… :wink:


#4

Well… we’re off. I was hoping there would be an update of good news, but unfortunately we got bumped again by the protein supplier. So since it’s another month at least, I’ve gone ahead and thrown down a few hundred for 60 days worth of People Chow 3.0.1 (30 days, 2 people) and we’re going to go ahead and take the plunge and start DIY’ing our way to simplicity.

A few questions - how do you mix it up? All at once? A day at a time? A week at a time?

Also, my doc says that because of my size, I shouldn’t go below 2400 cals a day for weight loss. Since this recipe is based on 2000 (just like Soylent) calories, what should I do about those extra 400? Throw in some honey? Peanut butter? Eat dried berries or a handful of almonds before my shake? Those are the general ideas I’ve had so far.

Finally, how much water do you add to a day’s worth of mix to make it drinkable? I don’t want something too thick.

Thanks to @axcho for your responses and to anyone else who might offer some insights.

Excited to start DIY soylent!! Thanks to prime shipping, should be going by Weds of next week!


#5

Congrats on starting your DIY soylent journey! :wink:

You want to mix up a day at a time, both because it’s easiest to read off the measurements directly from the recipe without doing any further calculation, and also to make sure that you’re getting an even mix of nutrients every 24 hours even if you haven’t blended everything perfectly uniformly.

Of course, you’ll probably want to mix several days’ worth in one sitting for the sake of efficiency (I’d probably shoot for once a week, after I’ve finalized a good recipe for myself - I’m still experimenting). Just do one day at a time to minimize deviations in nutrient quantities.

For a sense of how to mix everything up, refer to this video:

That’s what tipped the scales in favor of actually giving this DIY thing a try, for me! I’d recommend dumping the ingredients in a mixing bowl though, instead of a plastic bag, and then transferring from the mixing bowl to a plastic bag for shaking at the end of every (day’s worth) batch. More efficient that way. You can reuse the plastic bag - just keep it to dry powders and you won’t need to wash it.

Once I mix up a day’s worth of powder, I’ll split it into three containers (one for each meal) and add the oil. Each morning, you can take the day’s allotted mix and put it in three blender bottles. I just fill each bottle about 90% of the way with water, on top of the dry mix that takes up maybe 30% of the bottle. That way it’s not too watery or too thick. Adjust to your taste, of course. Shake up the bottles and let them sit in the fridge to chill until you need them. Just one day at a time though!

For the extra calories, I’d recommend more oil (fats) since People Chow 3.0.1 already has a ton of carbs (too many, in my opinion). Try bumping the soybean oil to 100g per day - that will bring the total just over 2400 calories, without really overdosing on any other nutrients.

I’m no scientist or doctor or nutritionist though, so do what you think is right! :wink:


#6

I don’t know about the protein isolate nutritional content, but would it be bad to increase the protein?


#7

I doubt that it would be bad to increase the protein, especially given that People Chow 3.0.1 is pretty low on protein. But it would take a lot more protein to add 400 calories (affecting taste, price, and nutrients) while it would take less than half as much oil to do the same.

I’d maybe increase the protein and the fat content at the same time - you could bump up the whey protein isolate to 100g and the soybean oil to 80g, and that would push the total calories to 2400.

Note that you could achieve the same increase simply by increasing soybean oil to 100g and leaving the whey protein isolate at 55g…


#8

Boy @axcho I really owe you. You’re helping me out a lot here.

I didn’t look at the distribution of calories but assumed it was around the 50/20/30 mark. I feel that’s very carb heavy (but something of a norm it seems) and would prefer to be around a 40/30/30 range but that’s been astonishingly difficult to achieve in the DIY tool for me.

Anyway, do you know of any particular benefit for going one way or the other? I did get the soybean oil, and can get more at a 15% discount if I put it on my subscribe and save order which comes on the 27th. On the other hand, I will already have extra protein, if I were to get my Soylent by mid April… so… yeah. Maybe I should get the extra oil, lulz.

Thanks for all your help and input. I really appreciate it!


#9

Hey, it’s my pleasure! :slight_smile: It’s been such a long time since I’ve been hanging around online forums, answering questions… it’s fun. Always nice to be able to help people out.

Yes, the distribution of calories in People Chow 3.0.1 is 50/20/30, and I agree that that’s carb-heavy but also pretty common on the DIY site.

So, the main benefit of going with oil is that it’s cheaper. :wink: But it really depends on your body, and what it likes. My body likes metabolizing fats a lot better than carbs, and protein is somewhere in the middle so I like to adjust the balance accordingly. But everyone is different.

I’d say try it with 100g soybean oil one day, and 100g whey protein isolate with 80g soybean oil another day, and see which tastes better and more filling, and how your body responds for each day. Then stick with whichever one you like better! :wink:

Let me know how it goes, I’m curious!


#10

Well that’s the plan exactly. Gonna try it both ways, a day each, and see how my body responds. I’m surprised to see that doubling the isolate only results in a couple hundred calories. I assume the quantities involved are what will impact the flavor/texture negatively?

Just ordered gallon ziplocs and 4 of the blender bottles. I’ve got scales of all sizes. So very exciting!

One thing I noticed in that video was that the guy was using the same scale for all his measurements. In many cases, it’s wise to use a smaller scale for the smaller amounts, and a larger scale for the larger amounts. This allows for greater precision, as a smaller, two-point gram scale will give you very precise measurements for the smaller amounts. (In culinary school, the rule was to use a scale that was capable of no more than 8x the amount being weighed, as a reference.)

Just super lookin forward to it. :smiley:


#11

Sounds like your questions have been answered and your on your way, congrats. Enjoy the ride.

I’m certainly not second guessing your doc, but wanted you to know what I’ve seen happen with me, in case it comes up for you as well. I would hate for you to have a similar starting experience and get discouraged.

The calculators all recommend much more intake than what I have found to be realistic for me, and I would expect an MD to likely use a similar method. The calc on the DIY site for instance says that to maintain my weight I would need about 3000kcal, and to lose weight quickly I would be at 2640kcal.

When I first created my recipe I put myself at about 2300kcal thinking I would easily start losing weight, and… I began steadily gaining weight, oops. I since dropped my intake to 1800kcal and am now seeing the weight loss I was seeking. I am two months in and have lost 22 pounds, it has been a steady decline, but I have a long way to go yet. I’m not sure of your size, but as a reference I am >300.

As to ratios, I chose to go 40/20/40. The high carbs for some recipes don’t appeal to me, and 20% from protein should be an ample amount for most people. Even at my reduced calories the 20% protein I am getting is well above what is needed.


#12

I do have other scales, but that was the only one I had at the time that could do .1g increments. Since then I’ve gotten a better scale though I still use much the same procedure since if I’m off by a tenth of a gram I’m not too worried about it. I’ve adapted the People Chow recipe a little for my own use as well, substituting the soybean oil for olive oil and a vitamin K supplement: http://diy.soylent.me/recipes/people-chow-301-tortilla-perfection-with-olive-oil

If you do stay with the soybean oil, you can likely find it at your local grocery store. Most of the oils labeled “100% vegetable oil” or “pure vegetable oil” are going to be straight soybean oil if you look at the ingredients. If you do go that route you want to get one from a lower shelf that’s in the back as there are indications that florescent lighting destroys the vitamin K.


#13

People keep saying that. I’m right at 295, and the calc said 2400ish was the bare minimum for extreme fat loss. The doc says he wouldn’t want me to go below 2400. But who knows. In the end, this is all based on a guesstimate anyway. We’ll see what my body says about it after I start plugging in complete nutritional sustenance. It may prove, as it has for so many others, that I don’t end up needing as much Soylent as I might otherwise need of muggle food.

At any rate, yeah, I’m all set up and just waiting it out now. I am working out fairly regularly now and am hopefully gaining some muscle as I try to balance my weight. A little extra protein won’t hurt me, and I’m thinking my body might like the extra protein if I up that part but we’ll see how it all works out. Just a few more days now… :smiley: :smiley: :smiley:


#14

Ah yeah, gotcha. Didn’t mean it as a criticism of course. Just another piece to add to everyone’s puzzle. Thanks for your advice on the oil - I had no dang idea!


#15

If your going to be working out I would up the protein for increased calories and not the fat. I would try a 50/30/20 split or possibly a 40/40/20 split. Since your working out while trying to lose fat I would not solely rely on a scale for fat loss, keep an eye on how you look in the mirror and how your clothes fit as the scale can be decieving and upsetting. Adjust the calorie intake as you see fit, calorie intake requirements are mainly your muscle mass combined with your activity level. I’m 230 lbs but to maintain my weight I require around 4000 calories a day. I’ve tried 2000 calories a day with soylent but I was losing about .5 lbs a day so I added 2 regular meals to bring me up to 3000 which I am still losing weight but at a healthier rate.