Still Sick on 2nd Day after trying only 1 glass of Soylent


We got our Soylent yesterday and my wife and I both made a batch and drank a cup. About 30min to an hour I started getting a weird buzz (like taking too much day cold medicine or being over caffeinated) that my wife also experienced which she described as an oddly anxious feeling, this led to massive headache that lasted for both my wife and I the rest of the day. Today, I’ve had stomach pains and gas throughout the day my wife is also complaining that she still doesn’t feel right. We only had one glass each and we only had our normal morning coffee to go with it and didn’t eat anything else before we both started feeling ill.

I know this isn’t just the fiber in the product as my wife and I normally supplement our diets with extra fiber like psyllium husks. Plus we didn’t go cold turkey on other food and just only eat Soylent for several days, we just had one glass each.

We normally eat an organic diet so I know we aren’t used to the processing in these ingredients, but I have many other shake products, many with high fiber, and I’ve never had such a bad reaction.

It is just disappointing, I have a busy job and having something that would be a quick nutritious meal would be great. I don’t know why other people put up with toughing it out, I can’t really think of a food product that has ever given me a reaction like this except maybe something that went bad.


I can’t help but compare it to a dog food. If you bought a dog food and it gave your pet terrible smelly gas and other bad side effects you probably wouldn’t buy it again, possibly you’d toss the remainder as well. Of course with pet food you have lots of competition out there, so you can just buy something else. I suppose the same is becoming true with the powdered foods like soylent now as well. Obviously there is Soylent, but there’s other options being sold as well and more becoming available.

I can’t help but wonder if Soylent 1.0 will turn people off of the concept completely or if they’ll attribute it to the specific product/version and give either a newer version of Soylent another try or switch to one of the other options. From reading the forum, it seems some of the DIY options don’t have the same negatives that Soylent does.


I have to say, this is bringing back memories.

For headaches, try adding 1/4 tsp table salt per day.

For the other symptoms, one small watermelon per day brought me relief in two or three days.


Do you both regularly take vitamins and such ? It’s possible you’ve consumed too much of a vitamin. Remember that 1 meal gives you 30% of your daily needs and if you were taking a vitamin as well, you’re now at 133% and many of the chemicals can be dangerous.


We didn’t take any other vitamin supplements. We just had coffee in the morning with the soylent as I said and went back to regular meals later in the day.


The headaches are usually reported when people fail to add extra salt. Did you add any salt to your Soylent?

Also, i know you said you didn’t take any vitamins with it, but do you normally take vitamins?

I find it odd that you both had the same reaction. I haven’t heard of a couple both having the same reaction of all the stories I heard. Perhaps your Soylent went bad? How did it taste/smell?


How did you prepare your Soylent? How much water did you use, did you use a blender or just shake it? When you say ‘a cup’ do you mean 8oz?


Perhaps they added salt with Potassium Iodine?.. I had my bad reaction to my first few glasses of Soylent the day I did that. basically an overdose on Iodide and Potassium which results in a headache that can last over 1 day for me at least.
Same day I even puked, which I attributed to also doing physical work (very physical)

edit: this was my first day of Soylent.


It seems almost impossible for this to be caused by a deficiency, especially sodium, in such a short period of time. The symptons described sound much more like a reaction to a dose of potassium or niacin at a higher level than your body is used to, maybe due to the fact that they’re more readily available in Soylent than in whole foods. I find it interesting that your perception is that Soylent is more processed than whole foods are. I haven’t thought about this before, but I think processed is the wrong word. It may be semantics but to me food processing is the addition of substances to foods for various reasons. I think it might be more accurate to say Soylent is more refined than the whole foods your body is used to having to break down and digest in order to access those vitamins and nutrients. Either way, bummer.


I receive the backer kit pitcher with it. We took a whole pouch and used the directions to make a pitcher with the pitcher we received. It was with the oil and the we filled the pitcher with water so the whole pitcher was full with the soylent mix.

As far as a cup - it was just the glass I had on hand both my wife and I had a glass each - although my wife blended hers with some organic frozen berries we had. There is over half the pitcher still left so if the pitcher is 2L we both likely had about 400ml.


Unlikely that was the cause of your episode based solely on salt and iodine content.

The daily amount of Iodine per US standards is 150 mcg per day. The Japanese in general take in over 13800 mcg per day. Iodized salt isn’t going to cause that much of an adverse reaction and a potassium overdose requires some effort, hypokalemia is far more common as hyperkalemia tends to be a physiological problem vs a food induced one, even with the diets of 1st world countries being so overloaded in sodium as it is.

Adding salt is good advice for anybody doing physical work in addition to maintaining hydration, soylent or no Hyponatremia could very well have been the cause of your headache.


While I do eat whole foods, I do fair amount of juicing and once a year or so will go on a liquid shake diet. The juicing is like a direct shot of vitamins and I don’t have issues. Most all the other shakes fortify with vitamins etc. in a similar manner but I don’t ever have bad reactions to them. The levels to really have vitamin or mineral overdose reaction are pretty high it isn’t just 101% or something like that. For example the RDA for vitamin A is 900micrograms for an adult male but the upper limit is 3000. Plus I’m a very big guy (over 6’) and not skinny.


Sure, I’m just pointing out the similarities between your symptons and other things, for example the niacin flush.


Sounds like potassium shock to me. The RDA for potassium is actually really high - think 10 bananas - so people generally don’t get even close with a normal diet, unless they eat a LOT of yogurt or other concentrated dairy. Plus, it’s not something you can just take in a pill (concentrated potassium will burn mucous membranes). Getting more potassium than you’re used to causes symptoms that are just like what you’re describing. It’s best to ramp up slowly.

In the long run, you’ll be a lot better off with proper intake, potassium is hugely important for cognitive abilities and preventing stroke, among other things.


It’s so interesting to me to see how everyone’s experience is so different. I’ve been on it for two days and have not experienced a single side effect. No headaches, no bad farts, no dizzyness.

Not trying to minimize your experience at all, but it seems to affect people in very different ways…


You may have had a virus.


I had the exact headache you’re describing, but my wife didn’t. From others who’ve had it, it sounds like sensitivity to either potassium or vanillan (or possibly magnesium). For me it was clearly something in the Soylent, and not an absence of something from my usual diet.

Good news is, the headaches stopped after a day or two and then returned (but much less severe, mostly just lightheadedness) each time I increased my daily intake. After the first week, after building up to 95% Soylent 1.0, I was completely free of headaches and lightheadedness.