I have been using my DIY soylent recipe called BulkBarnMax for about two weeks now, with only the occasional meal of real food to supplement. It’s generally great for me – increased energy, weight loss, feeling good all over. But sometimes I have had severe digestive problems that took me a while to figure out. I use a lot of oat flour, so I thought perhaps it was related to the phytic acid that others talk about. But now I understand that it’s a problem of my stomach sometimes not producing enough HCL to activate the protein digestion process. When that happens, the soylent mixture sits there in a lump, giving me cramps. I am prone to low stomach acid in the first place and when I chug a shaker of bland vanilla-tasting liquid as I rush through the day my body isn’t getting the signal it needs to start the protein digestive process. So here is what I do to solve it, in case this is a problem for you:
- Drink the soylent when you’re feeling hungry
- Eat a bit of sauerkraut, kimchee, or a pickle before you drink the soylent. Even a spoon of vinegar or a drink of lemon water will do.
- If all else fails, take a couple of Betaine HCL capsules. These work even after you have drunk the soylent, although like everything they’re more effective if taken before.
Yesterday I had particularly bad cramps from drinking soylent and the Betaine HCL made it all better. I know this won’t be an issue that affects everyone. Most people in their 20’s will not have a problem with this, but stomach acid production decreases as we age. It sort of makes sense, too. We’re taking away the cues of flavour and chewing that signal the body to start producing stomach acid and then dumping a load of protein in the stomach before it’s ready. By the way, my protein source is a high-quality whey isolate which is the most expensive component of my mixture.