New Year's DIY Resolution

I was on official Soylent for about a month and a half (1.1), but had to quit due to gas. I tried nearly everything mentioned on here, but nothing made a noticeable difference.

I’m planning on starting DIY for the New Year. If any of you have feedback to give, I’d greatly appreciate it! I’ve read a ton of discourse posts about DIY experiences, as well as a ton of wikipedia articles about various nutrients, and have tried to synthesize that information into a more suitable (gas free) and nutritionally ideal recipe.

I’m a ~170 pound, 5 foot 11 inch, 26 year old, male - hoping to gain some weight (get a little bulkier/leaner) lifting weights four times, and walking 6+ hours, per week.

My recipe is here:


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Try using a multi-vitamin with lesser levels of B1,B5,B6,B7, B12.

I was interested in doing so, initially. However, I couldn’t find any evidence that there are any adverse side effects when taken at these levels (even though they are so much higher than the RDI).

The way i see it, there are two reasons usually behind somebody not finding adverse effects of something. The first is there are no adverse effects. And the second is there are adverse effects but they couldnt detect them. Since the second scenario is a possibility too, the concept of RDI’s exist (among other reasons too ofcourse). So i think a ‘Better safe than sorry’ approach should be taken in my opinion. Especially with regards to what we put inside our bodies.

Anyway, its your choice what approach you take, since you are making it primarily for yourself.

My guess is that the makers of this multi-vitamin are trying to replicate this finding (which is not evidentially strong by any means), I quote from wikipedia:

"The RDA in most countries is set at about 1.4 mg. However, tests on female volunteers at daily doses of about 50 mg have claimed an increase in mental acuity.[16] There are no reports available of adverse effects from consumption of excess thiamine by ingestion of food and supplements. Because the data is inadequate for a quantitative risk assessment, no Tolerable Upper Intake Level (UL) can be derived for thiamine… "

The citation is for: “Thiamine’s Mood-Mending Qualities”, Richard N. Podel, Nutrition Science News, January 1999.

Edit: The link appears to be broken. Apologies.

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If you intend to grind the pills into powder as in your notes I would suggest you consider buying a powdered vitamin to begin with, grinding the pills may become tedious, and they usually taste nasty. The taste may be masked by your other ingredients, but maybe not, hiding the vitamin flavor is one of the reasons Soylent included some of the flavoring/sweetener they have. Since you’re already using GNC Mega Man you could easily switch to the powdered version of the same vitamin they sell, plus it’s easier to dial in the dosage with powder, rather than going by whole pills.

Welcome to the soylent club.

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I hadn’t thought about the taste of the vitamin pills, or the tediousness of grinding them up. But I did order some of the powdered Vanilla Bean Mega Man Sport to try as an alternative to the pills. It’s a little more expensive than using the pills, but if it’s a lot more convenient and/or tastes better, then I might stick with it.

Have you (or anyone else) tried the chocolate version?

I haven’t. I’ve heard, but don’t recall where, that the chocolate is not good. I’ve used the vanilla bean in a few recipes and haven’t noticed the flavor, though I use less than the standard dose (currently 14g) to get my recipe where I need it to be.

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You have a potential dangerous level of omega 3. At levels above 5g/day they start to cause unusual bleeding and lowering your immune response.


Do you (or anyone else here) have a source for that?

I can’t find any evidence for an upper intake on omega 3, simpliciter. What I can find pertaines only to “combined” (a term that I’m a little unsure how to disambiguate) EPA and DHA. It was this advice in view of which I listed the omega 3 breakdown of the fish oil per 5ml.

“Supplemental intakes of EPA and DHA combined at doses up to 5 g/day, and supplemental intakes of EPA alone up to 1.8 g/day, do not raise safety concerns for adults.” This is quoted from the European Food Safety Authority (2012):

It looks like you provided your own citation. @MentalNomad has done extensive research on fats and knows more than I do.

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My recipe doesn’t exceed that marker, though. In fact, I’m thinking of increasing the fish oil from 15 to 20 ml. It seems my EPA and DHA levels may fall below a therapeutic threshold.

“EFSA has carried out a number of scientific assessments of health claims related to the benefits of n-3 LCPUFA intake. The NDA Panel has concluded that intakes of EPA and DHA of between 2g and 4g a day are needed to reach claimed effects such as the maintenance of blood pressure and triglyceride levels…”

“Specifically, the experts say that supplemental intakes of EPA and DHA of up to 5g a day do not increase the risk of reported adverse effects such as bleeding episodes, impaired regulation of glucose levels or impaired immune function.”

Both from the press release for the above quoted panel report:

I still don’t know how they’re measuring “DHA and EPA”, though. Is up to 4mg equal to up to 4 mg of DHA and up to 4 mg EPA? Or, alternatively, would 3mg EPA and 1mg DHA equal 4mg “EPA and DHA”? I think it is the latter, but am very unsure.

It’s up to 5g of combined DHA and EPA. I assume then your recipe has a fair amount of ALA. Sorry I didn’t really look that closely at the breakdown. From the sounds of it you have read all the relevant information on omega 3.

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Would 2 mg of DHA and 3 mg of EPA count as 5 mg of combined DHA and EPA ?

2+3=5 :smile:

I like Nordic Naturals for my fish oil. It may be a better buy than the one you are using. Its worth looking into.

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Thanks for the tip !

Also: I did increase the fish oil in the recipe, bringing it up to 20ml.

And this proves my second scenario.

I’d caution you to bear in mind that the therapeutic effect is only relevant if you’re in need of therapy. In other words, when they say “maintenance of blood pressure,” they don’t mean healthy people staying healthy. They mean hypertensive people (with high blood pressure) using EPA/DHA as a drug to lower their blood pressure so they can maintain a more normal blood pressure.

The risk profile for someone with hypertension is different - they are at risk of adverse event or death because of their hypertension. Taking 4g of EPA/DHA may add some risks because of the supplement even while it takes away other risks because it helps manage the hypertension.

In the range approaching 5g, EPA/DHA is definitely acting as a blood thinner. This is believed to be the primary reason why it has a beneficial therapeutic effect for those who have conditions which are improved by taking a blood thinner.

As a healthy 26-year old, it does not make sense to take therapeutic doses of EPA/DHA any more than any other therapeutic drug.

Always remember this is an open area of research. No finding is absolute - every new finding adds to the general weight of evidence as we narrow down our knowledge. In the U.S., 3 g is GRAS (generally regarded as safe.) Levels of 6.5 g per day have been associated with serious problems. The EFSA panel finds that up to 5 g a day does not raise safety concerns, but ONLY in context of the following two facts:

  1. “Among consumers with the highest intakes of n-3 LCPUFA (from fatty fish and/or food supplements), levels can rise to 2,700mg a day for adults.”
  2. Dosages of 2g to 4g are used for therapeutic effects.

(quote from the EFSA press release)

I would interpret this as saying EPA/DHA as a drug appears safe at up to 5g per day… where ‘safe’ is defined in drug terms. That doesn’t mean that taking up to 5g has no risk… it does have risk. But it means EPA/DHA does not bring so much risk that it raises safety concerns when taking into account the risk-reduction of the therapeutic effects.

Also bear in mind that part of the purpose of the EFSA is to help determine what should and should not be sold ‘over the counter,’ versus controlled. A safety finding is important if it’s to be legally sold in anything other than tiny doses.

Their report covers a lot of different ground, and it’s easy to confuse the safety assessment for EPA/DHA as a therapeutic versus the safety assessment of EPA/DHA as nutritional guidance for good health. The actual EFSA report’s summary says:

The Panel considers that supplemental intakes of EPA and DHA combined at doses up to 5 g/day, and supplemental intakes of EPA alone up to 1.8 g/day, do not raise safety concerns for the adult population. Limited data are available on the effects of long-term supplementation with these n-3 LCPUFAs at higher doses. The Panel also notes that observed intakes of EPA and DHA from food and food supplements in European populations are generally below these amounts. Dietary recommendations for EPA and DHA based on CVD risk considerations for European adults are between 250 and 500 mg/day. There are no specific recommendations for EPA.

So they specifically call out that the recommended daily intake, bearing in mind that it’s beneficial and reduces the risk of Cardio-Vascular Disease, is 250 to 500 mg/day. At the same time, they’re saying intakes up to 5g/day appear safe for the population (but not necessarily risk-free), and they mention that there isn’t yet much information on the risks inherent in long-term supplementation at high dosages of 2g and 4g. (There are mostly 12-week studies.)

For EPA/DHA, I don’t think it’s a good idea to push yourself up to the safety limit when you’re not trying to address a specific underlying problem. Personally, I’d shoot for 1g per day at your size, which is already double or quadruple the typical daily recommendation, but half or a quarter of the amount you’d want to take if you had a dysfunction to treat, such as high blood pressure or a cholesterol problem.


I’m an advocate of getting plenty of the water-soluble B vitamins. I didn’t look at the specifics of the sup you’re using, but I’m not concerned over any generally-available high-potency supplement’s level of B vitamins. They have a very different safety profile from EPA/DHA, and there are a broad range of observed beneficial effects.

Personally, I use LEF’s “Life Extension Mix” multivitamin in tablet form; I trust their research and the levels they set, so feel free to compare. I used to buy their powdered version, but it definitely caused flavor problems in my DIY. I ended up making my DIY, but mixing up the powdered vitamins in a separate glass so I could chug it and wash it down. So I switched back to taking pills for all my supps.

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Thanks for providing such a detailed and helpful response. I truly appreciate it!

I totally misunderstood what was meant by “therapeutic”. I’m going to cut my fish oil serving into a quarter of it’s previous size (from 20 to 5 ml).

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