Ketogenic Soylent: FAQ & Experience


Sucks about the discomfort. How about looking into drinking something like beef suet instead of purely oil? That way you can maintain the liquid aspect of Soylent and not drink as much oil. Is the only difference between your version of soylent and the original a lack of maltodextrin and an increase in oil?


Two this GS to think about. One you dislodge bacteria and they latched to your tonsils. Two your feeling like there is something to still swallow has you swallowing more which will cause a raw spot on your tonsils, like when you have a really runny nose and you goto bed. You end up swallowing all night long and wake up with sore throat/tonsil.


Yeah, that’s the only difference. Soon to be replaced by almonds, will see if that works. And the original was/is fantastic for me for a whole month, so I feel pretty good about the idea in general.


I posted this in the Alternative thread. Might help you get more fat/protein in liquid form.


So, good news!

I haven’t been eating much soylent lately (daily still, but not as much). I’ve been consuming other ketogenic foods for the past two days.

The past two days have also been highly interesting. Since starting I’ve been hit with every single thing on this list, the benign ones like thirst, keto breath, and cold extremities especially in the last two days:

Early stage [ketosis] symptoms include the following:

  • ** Tiredness or fatigue
  • * Headache
  • ***** Feeling thirsty all the time
  • **** Dry mouth
  • **** Ketosis breath, which smells vaguely fruity and not terribly pleasant
  • **** Metallic taste in the mouth, particularly on the back of the tongue near the molars
  • *** Weakness (see my reply!)
  • * Dizziness
  • * Nausea or stomach ache
  • ** Sleep problems
  • **** Cold hands and feet
  • **** Frequent urination [kind of a duh, goes with thirst]

I’ve put asterisks on a 1-5 rating of how severe relative to each other. Dizziness has been very mild and pretty much nonexistent. Headache also very very mild. Nausea/stomach ache once and very mild. None of these concerned me. The weakness is very noticeable. I don’t feel weak doing daily things, but carrying something heavy? Very much so. Even say, holding my arm straight up for a while. (Update: see my reply a couple posts below.)

I’m actually quite happy about this. I was worried it was my soylent. I’ve obviously a ways to go in adaptation, but I think I’m off to a very good start. It’s also quite possible the swallowing/tonsil problem I was experiencing (which I reiterate was also very mild) is simply related to some of these.

It’s actually quite possible that my ketogenic soylent was doing a very good job at pacifying these initial adaptation symptoms, and since eating more solid food in the past two days they’ve become more noticeable. Apparently the MCTs in coconut oil and olive oil give quick energy, and are similar to carbohydrates in a way. I wonder if the body thus handles these much easier and it abates symptoms while still adapting to ketosis in general.

I tried two tablespoons of coconut oil and the rest olive oil. It tastes awful. My ketogenic soylent tastes awful. I’m really missing the flavor of the carbs in it. So I’ve come up with a solution, it’s no longer going to be diluted with 3L or so of water. Instead, I’m going to try it all in a single liter tomorrow (and then after tomorrow I’m going to try almonds and soylent without oil… excited for that). I’m not going to do anything stupid like drink it all at once, rather I’ll drink very small quantities of a thicker soylent throughout the day. I think it will help a great deal with the taste. I’m a very tolerant person and I doubt I will have any issue with this. I’m also excited about the increased portability. I will also work on improving the flavor at some point.


My ketogenic soylent drink is NOW’s whey protein isolate, fiber (which switching for a new one, possibly), olive oil, KCl, and water to the 2 liter mark on my container. I mix with half the water and an immersion blender and blend it well, then fill it up and blend one more time. It isn’t an ideal taste, but I sort of like it. Everything else is in pill form, which I don’t bother grinding up because I can’t be bothered in something that’s supposed to be easier, and I don’t want things to break down and become useless nutritionally by sitting in soylent all day. Because of the vitamins in the multivitamin, I take it with soylent (fat-soluble vitamins). I take calcium/magnesium/phosphorous multi pill 90 minutes before/after taking a multivitamin since it blocks some of the things in it. I also take an 18mg iron pill every other day, and 90 minutes before/after taking either the calcium or multivitamin since it can block calcium and I think some things in the multi. I also have to take a tsp of salt raw because it makes the soylent inedible. It’s the only thing I leave out because of taste. It’s really easy to do if you have some water in your mouth first, pour it in, and swallow and you don’t taste much of it at all.

Ideally I’d just have a powder I mix with water every day for a day’s worth of nutrition, but because I don’t know how to measure how much of any nutrient is actually being absorbed in an immediate and helpful way, I don’t see how I can go forward making things simpler. I think I’m just going to wait and see what Rob offers and hope he has a zero carb version that’s well tested.

Of course the multivitamin (or anything else I’m taking) could not be absorbing as well as I think or at all, but even so, it’s still probably better than what I’ve been doing. I’m going to do a detailed post on everything in my soylent, why I do it that way, and so on—but I’m waiting until I’ve been on it for a while and made any adjustments and am relatively satisfied with it.

For now, I’ll leave you with one recommendation: the Opti-Men multivitamin is superb! Three of them a day, 180 pills in a bottle (a 60 day supply) for less than $20 on when I ordered. It has a massive list of things that are in it, including some of the optional things in Rob’s list and some digestive enzymes that help with absorption. For those of you sourcing from multivitamins, take a look.


Just an update, approximately two weeks. I’m no longer on a “calorie restricted” diet. I’m also no longer drinking Soylent at all, so these updates may be less useful to some but I’ll continue with them for a little while anyway. I’m still ensuring I get adequate nutrients as I did with soylent though. I read Why We Get Fat: And What To Do About It by Gary Taubes on @cameronmalek’s advice and it’s been eye opening. Fantastic research.

I believe my weakness may have been simply from eating too few calories. It was present (I think to a smaller degree) before I switched to a ketogenic diet, and I believe I ate even less after.

I’ve been eating to hunger recently and, along with greater adaptation I expect, the only remaining symptoms seem to be a metallic taste in the mouth and increased thirst. Overall the entire adjustment has been very easy. Adaptation may be easier for me as I was already consuming significantly fewer carbohydrates from simply being on a low-calorie Soylent for a month before going ketogenic. (200g or less in Soylent, and I rarely finished it all.)

My sleep has been fantastic (even though I still don’t always get as much as I should). I’ve noticed a big difference. When I wake in the morning I feel like I’ve been awake for 3 hours, I just casually do my morning routine like I’ve been up all day, there’s no “waking up” at all, it’s quite lovely. If I went to bed too late my head still feels unpleasant as I’d expect but physically the rest of me is quite good.

My skin seems much improved as well.

I’m excited for my next update because I’ve corrected some mistakes I made with supplements that were negatively affecting me and next week should be a big improvement.


Just chiming in as someone who’s gone through a few phases of keto ranging from a few weeks to a few months (solid food)… I can’t stress how important electrolytes and hydration are during the induction phase - it really can make the difference between feeling halfway decent and dealing with the notorious flu-like symptoms. Drinking chicken stock/broth (or some salt water) is an easy way to make sure you’re not deprived.

Personally I wouldn’t calorie-restrict much at all during keto. During a month and a half span of keto I ate 3-4 full meals a day and still managed to lose nearly 15lbs, and I wasn’t overweight to begin with. If you’re watching calories on keto you’re going to feel pretty awful all the time - it’s a diet that really requires being able to eat frequently enough to not feel hungry.


This is very interesting. May I ask why not use grapeseed oil instead of the Olive oil? Best of luck with this.


I’ve used both based on what was around the house, and grapeseed oil tastes worse in my opinion. I’m sure others disagree. I don’t see a strong reason to not use grapeseed oil if that’s what you want.


I wanted to report that I am on my first day of (normal, non-ketogenic) soylent, and like the OP, I have a sore throat. Has this happened to anybody else?


You got used to it? :stuck_out_tongue:


I’m really, very interested in a ketogenic soylent. I had great success with a ketosis trial earlier this year and would like to continue with it. I really think keto is one of the best ‘life hacks’ someone could do for themselves; with the possibility of soylent being keto too, this could be revolutionary.

Question: Where are the instructions on how to build a keto soylent product or mix? I’ve been searching these forums and haven’t come across any instructions on how to do this. Any assistance or a link would be much appreciated.


Please let me know how your skin does over time. I was looking into this too but the adjustment period was too uncomfortable for me.

I have very greasy skin and I wonder how much of this could be due to my body’s preference for carbs.


So actually @kthprog I’m still on this diet specifically for the benefit to my skin.
I stopped losing fat after reaching ~10% body fat (I figure I would lose more if I started weight training like I’ve been meaning to) but I’ve kept on it because it keeps my skin so clear.

And to put that in perspective, I was on Accutane, which worked briefly, I was then on Dan Kern’s The Regimen for at least a few years (effective but spendy and an enormous hassle), and now I’m on nothing. :stuck_out_tongue: I just spot treat with a tiny amount of benzoyl peroxide. The anti-inflammation property of this diet is insane.


I have acne and mild sebhorreic dermatitis both associated with overproduction of sebum. The acne isn’t inflammatory (i.e. it’s not red at all) but the S.D. definitely is.

Being 19 I’m a bit too old to have acne.

I can’t avoid carbs for anything other than a short period of time without starting to feel very stressed and hungry even if I eat enough fat, but for the sake of my skin this is worth trying to me.

Thanks for the response, I’m going to start changing up my Soylent recipe to a Keto recipe as soon as I can.

I’m extremely hairy though which suggests that regardless of my diet, I may be producing such a large quantity of androgens that I’ll continue experiencing acne until later than normal in life when my androgen production declines.


This is most likely because your body isn’t adapted to burning fat for energy, it’s adapted to burning carbohydrates. Don’t you think? What I’m saying is this is normal. Once it has adapted I’d expect you to experience the opposite, tremendous satiation.

To be honest I feel I’ve lost the satiation benefit at this point in the diet, it’s probably because there really isn’t “excessive” fat storage for me to burn anymore so I actually have to eat a somewhat regular amount of food again, hah. Oh well. I still retain the clear skin benefit though, and sharp mind.

I’m 27 by the way. :wink:


The thing that makes me feel the most likes it’s a good idea is the fact that carbs simply aren’t necessary for human health. That on it’s own suggests to me that it’s better eliminated from the diet.

Also I would think that logically lower blood sugar means less free glucose for invasive organisms to utilize, which is probably what reduces acne.

I’ll definitely put the effort in.

How long does it usually take to adjust?


Fully adapted in something like 3-5 weeks I think. I hear 3 a lot. I’d say completely over any negative symptoms after a week and a half. It takes a few days to get fully in ketosis and then there’s an adjustment for a few to 7 days or something like this. I found myself very thirsty (to be expected as the water weight is shed from the way glucose is stored as glycogen in the body). You lose sodium during this transition so it’s very important that you supplement a bit with sodium, if you do so you’ll feel fine. If you don’t you can get flu-like symptoms and feel quite awful.

Thus salt is a critically important nutrient for athletes, and this is
especially true on a low carbohydrate diet. When carbohydrates are
restricted the body changes from retaining both water and salt to
discarding them. Because of this fundamental shift in mineral
management, it’s not uncommon for people to lose 4-5 pounds of water
weight during the first week of a low carbohydrate diet. Typically,
only half of that first week’s weight loss is from fat and the other
half is due to salt loss along with its associated water. If some of
that salt is not replaced, however, blood flow may be impaired and the
body over-reacts in its quest for salt. This primarily happens in the
kidneys, which try to compensate by wasting potassium (i.e., kidney
cells give up potassium in exchange for retaining sodium), leading to
a negative potassium balance.

The loss of water and salt can reduce plasma volume and make you feel
sluggish and compromise your ability to perform outdoors in the heat
or in the weight room. As a result, some people get headaches and feel
faint. This state of salt depletion causes a compensatory loss of
potassium, which has a negative impact on muscle mass since potassium
is a necessary co-factor in building and maintaining skeletal muscle.
The easy solution is to routinely take 1-2 grams of sodium per day in
the form of 2 bouillon cubes (or home-made broth). Some bouillon cubes
contain less than 1 gram sodium so be sure to check. On days that you
exercise, be sure to take one dose of broth or bouillon 30 minutes
before your workout.

Phinney, Stephen; Volek, Jeff (2012-06-15). The Art and Science of Low
Carbohydrate Performance (p. 80-81). Beyond Obesity LLC. Kindle Edition.


Thanks for writing up that little guide chris! I’ve made a few small changes and used it as a basis for the wiki page for ketogenic soylent. Hope that’s cool!