Reliable Ingredient Nutritional Information


#1

I’m trying to put together my own soylent recipe, but I’m finding it virtually impossible to find complete nutritional profiles of various ingredients. Basic google searching hasn’t panned out so far. I’ve found SELFNutritionData (http://nutritiondata.self.com/) but it doesn’t seem to be very accurate. I’ve also been checking the USDA site, but there are a ingredients missing from that site. Does anyone have a
solid resource for this data?


#2

self.com is good, but they’re only as good as the USDA data they pull from.


#3

Can you give some examples of ingredients that you’re struggling with? And some examples of problems with the self.com information?

Generally the nutrition label for the product is fairly good, although some (for example, protein) won’t contain enough detail for certain micronutrients (protein, for example, often contains a significant amount of sulphur, which is not explicitly listed on the nutrition label). Another source is other DIY soylent recipes, although you have to be careful to select only “reliable” recipes.


#4

So far I haven’t been able to find anything on self.com about soluble/insoluble fiber, biotin, chromium, iodine, molybdenum or sulfur.

I haven’t been able to find reliable nutrition info on cacao nibs. A lot of nutrition labels don’t include all vitamins and minerals - only calcium, vitamin a, vitamin c, and iron. It seems like having all available information would be really important when engineering a complete diet, but I don’t feel like I’m getting it.


#5

Yes, it can be difficult to get some of that detail. Fiber should be available. Have you taken a look at some of the popular recipes on the DIY site? I get a lot of my details from them. The sulphur is fairly easy to derive for protein if you can get the amino acid composition. Most ingredient labels include more than the four nutrients that you listed.

I found fiber, iron, magnesium, copper, and manganese information for cacao nibs very easily with a quick Google search … you just need to do some cross checking and verification of the information before accepting it, which takes some time.

I actually use a multi-vitamin for most micronutrients, so I’m generally only looking for other ingredients in macronutrients, which is fairly simple.


#6

I’m looking to make a whole food recipe that eliminates foods that I’m either allergic or sensitive to, includes foods that have effects on the thyroid and mood, and hopefully tastes decent.

I found the following for the cacao nibs:

Calories: 130
Carbs: 13g
Sugar: 0g
Protein: 2g
Fat: 12g
Copper: .5mg
Iron: 3.3mg
Magnesium: 63.8mg
Manganese: .5mg

That information was on one site only, at least that I could find. Other sites listed slightly different values for the 5 values, but didn’t list the bottom 4, or only listed some of them.

One of the recipes I’ve been looking at lists fiber, calcium, copper, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, sodium, sulfur, zinc, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, folate, pantothenic acid, choline, and vitamins e and k.

I suppose if worse comes to worst I could get the recipe tested in a lab to verify the nutrition. It just seems strange to me that there isn’t more reliable information out there.


#7

When I can’t find what I think is reliable information for something that I’m hoping to use I usually just remove it from the recipe and look for something else that has more reliable sources for the nutrient breakdown. But you are correct: having your recipe tested is probably the only way to be sure, but for most of us I think that’s way too expensive; that’s why it’s easiest to pay RL for a tested formulation. Unfortunately, for some of us either allergy issues are a problem (specifically, gluten and canola oil for my wife), or the taste is unacceptable (me), or it is unavailable where they live, or the calorie/micronutrient ratios aren’t what we want.

Fortunately, in our case, we aren’t concerned about using “whole” food … I’m happy to put in potassium carbonate/citrate, sodium chloride, ascorbic acid, selenium, isomaltulose, whey isolate, and, as I’ve said previously, a multivitamin. But you’ll find a number of complete “natural” recipes on the DIY site, so I’d start with those. Good luck!


#8

Unfortunately, adding new ingredients requires going through stacks of online research - there hasn’t been much demand for nutritional breakdowns as thorough as the soylent diy’er needs. Most consumers (even health conscious ones) don’t ever go as far as we do in learning about what’s in the food.

Most of it’s available out there, there’s just not a grand unified database, because until Soylent, there wasn’t much demand for one, at least in the form we want.