Omega 3/6 Ratio Concerns in Sunflower Oil?

Hey guys,

I’m wondering if anyone has thoughts on the skewed ratio between Omega 6s to Omega 3s in Sunflower oil. I’m aware that while Sunflower oil offers a beneficial source of linoleic acid and other polyunsaturated fats, in other regards the proportion of Omega 6s might be problematic. As far as my basic understanding goes, Omega 6s (specifically linoleic acid) are still essential to the body, but without being paired with the anti-inflammatory effects of Omega 3s, they can begin to promote inflammation.

This is especially relevant since Drink has switched to Sunflower oil as the major source of lipids. Anyways, wondering whether there are any gaps in my knowledge, and I look forward to hearing what everyone thinks.

That’s a realistic concern. Have you looked into supplemental doses? Because Soylent is vegan, it might be wise to supplement the omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA at a dose of 200 to 300 mg per day, and also vitamin B12 at a dose of 25 to 100 micrograms per day or 1,000 to 2,000 mcg per week (vitamin B12 is best absorbed in small doses, so the less frequently you ingest vitamin B12, the more you need to take at one time).

This is another reason that I’d like to see Soylent return to algal oil as soon as possible.

Soylent already supplements B12. No need to add more.

As with all of Soylent’s supplements, it depends on how much of the product you are ingesting. Each bottle of 2.0 meets 20% of your RDA for iron, but I’m only having 3 bottles per day. “There’s no need to add more” even for someone consuming the full daily compliment of Soylent is not a statement I’m willing to make considering how easy it is to supplement and the relatively nonexistent downside to it.

I’ve been a vegan for 25+ years, so I’m probably over-cautious. YMMV.

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Didn’t realize you were vegan. In that case I agree with your decision to supplement. I made the assumption that you and Aiden were omnivores. But really you only need to supplement the non-Soylent portion of your diet. I know it’s semantics but it’s still a good point. If you were to go 100% Soylent you wouldn’t need supplementation it’s only when you go less that supplements become potentially necessary.

Perhaps we should stop hijacking this thread. If you want PM me.

Hey, we’re still on track. @AidanGoltra brought up a good point. Sunflower oil is one of the worst oils when it comes to omega-3 to omega-6 ratios. Humans evolved to consume omega-3 and 6 at basically a 1:1 ratio, with acceptable variation anywhere from about 4:1 to about 1:4. Sunflower oil is about 1:70, heavy on the omega-6 side, which is ridiculous and much too likely to lead to tissue inflammation and related illnesses.

Disregarding any other nutrients, I think supplementing EPA and DHA is well advised if Soylent is one’s primary source of lipids. That is the case with me now. When I go back to a legacy food vegan diet I can include plenty of palm, coconut, olive, or flaxseed oil, but since I’m only consuming Soylent now, supplementing is called for, and I’d advise anyone else to do the same if they aren’t getting a good balance of the fatty acids.

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So one important thing to bear in mind here is that the sunflower oil used in Soylent products is a high-oleic version.

What this means is that the predominant fats in it are monounsaturated, and not polyunsaturated. The ratio is still an issue, but as relatively little of the fat coming from the sunflower oil is any form of PUFA, the issue is minimised somewhat.

Soylent products generally don’t have the best fatty acid profile when it comes to the omegas (both in terms of ratio and in terms of pure omega 3 intake), but this particular element isn’t too big an issue.


Great breakdown, I hadn’t connected that Omega 6s and PUFAs could be independent. Thanks so much!