Why is 1.6 vs 2.0 sugar content so different?

So, pondering switching back to powder, I looked at the nutrition info for the new 1.6 vs the 2.0 I’ve been drinking.

The 2.0 nutrition facts PDF says 9g of sugar, all of which is added sugar.

The 1.6 nutrition facts PDF says 19g of sugar, all of which is added sugar. (1.5 was 15g of sugar.)

Why is there so much more sugar in the powder?

2.0 has 9 grams of sugar per 400 calories.

1.6 has 15.2 grams of sugar per 400 calories (19 grams of sugar is per 500 calories).

(Likewise 1.5 has 12 grams per 400 calories.)

Unhelpfully, I’ve no idea why 1.6 has more sugar than 1.5 and/or 2.0.

The release notes discuss some of the changes; maybe isomaltooligosaccharide, isomaltulose and maltodextrin are sugars? I dunno.

As it pertains to the “sugar” information on food labels, the FDA defines sugar in the CFR:

Sugars shall be defined as the sum of all free mono- and disaccharides (such as glucose, fructose, lactose, and sucrose).

In Soylent, isomaltulose is a disaccharide and therefore qualifies as “sugar”.

In the 1.5 formula, we can see there are 50g of isomaltulose, where 50/4=12.5g. A little more sugar must be coming from some other ingredient, but I don’t really care to investigate which.

In the 1.6 formula, there are 77g of isomaltulose, where 77/4=19.25g. This accounts for all of the “sugars” on the label.

For comparison to 2.0, again take into account @pauldwaite’s note that 2.0 is 9g / 400 kcal, which is around 11.25g / 500 kcal.

Be careful what conclusions you draw from the “sugar” content printed on a food label. There is no sucrose (table sugar) in Soylent, so worries about sucrose specifically may not apply. The “sugar” label isn’t even helpful as a first indicator of glycemic index. Isomaltulose has a low glycemic index, despite being labeled as a sugar. Maltodextrin has a high glycemic index, despite not being labeled as a sugar.


Nice! So:

Isomaltulose has been increased to improve glycemic index and texture.

That’s 1.6 as compared to 1.5

I guess 2.0 has other ways to get a good texture and glycemic index.

The NYTimes posted a table today of substances said to simply mean “sugar added”. Unfortunately it included our old friend isomaltulose.

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