East Meets West Returns Triumphantly, And Other Such Things

On UnwindMedia.com this week, I finally managed to convince Nick to sit down with me for another East Meets West! Thank goodness beer exists to help make that happen! We also had great episodes of Future Chat and Ottawhat? as you’d expect, and those were no slouches either. I should note that in Future Chat, we spontaneously decided to do a moment of silence, which worked surprisingly well until Nick burst out laughing 5 seconds after.

I spent a lot of time on this blog talking about Soylent, the food product that is literally just a powder you mix with water. I really like it except for the sweetener taste, but I won’t discuss that in any more detail now, you can find out exactly what I think so far here.

Today on East Meets West, Nick and Rob discuss the NHL draft, polling for the fall’s federal election, the mass exodus of cabinet ministers and what that…
In this episode, we chatted with Jacques Breau. Jacques is a woodworker and a vinyl collector, and you can find him all over Ottawa this summer on his tru…
This week, the latest Falcon 9 launch is unsuccessful, Rob talks all about his week on Soylent, and we revisit mobile phone corner. We also try a moment o…

Reflections On Soylent So Far

I’m going to keep this fairly short, but after 5 days having Soylent for at least one meal, here are my thoughts:

  • I don’t like the taste of sucralose, and it is the main taste of the current formulation. If there was a non-sweetenered version, I would find that much tastier. I would also love to chew gum these days if it wasn’t sweetened with terrible sucralose, aspartame or acesulfame potassium. The artificial sweetener just kills it for me.
  • I need a better way to mix it completely without resorting to a blender. At the moment, I end up with an imperfect mix (gets stuck to the sides and bottom of the container) just by shaking it up.
  • Food when you’re out or with people is a social thing. You can’t just have Soylent when you’re out with friends having a meal, or at a party. That is definitely a limiting factor for me.
Soylent is not actually this social a drink.
If I wanted to just replace all my meals with this (non-sweetened), I think I could do it, if I lived in a bubble. But there are so many circumstances where either I want to eat something, or I’m going somewhere that it’s expected I consume food, that incorporating Soylent into my diet 100% would be really difficult.
Soylent works best when you’re hungry, have it on you, and you’re going to eat alone. I haven’t tried prepping it in advance to just drink when I get hungry, but I’ll have to try that at some point. I still have almost 60% of the powder left, I think it will last me another week or two. The sucralose taste I think it’s what’s putting me off, because it doesn’t taste bad at all to me, so I think if I could try it without sucralose I could see myself doing it long-term much more easily.

Soylent Friday: Day 3

Wow, the last three days have been crazy. Here are my live-blogs from Day 1 and Day 2. Follow the Day 3 story below:

5:40 PM Fri.: Going to see a movie tonight! I will probably get something like pizza or a hotdog, but I usually get both. I am pretty hungry, but I’m “saving” calories for dinner by holding out for a while. This will likely be my last update today, but check back tomorrow to see how weekend days go!

3:15 PM Fri.: Hmmmmm, I have a little bit of a headache and I’m not sure why. Friday afternoons are always hard for me because I really appreciate my weekends. I’m going to hold out on eating more until I get home, and I might not eat great tonight as I’m going to see Inside Out tonight, but I’m interested to see how the weekend on Soylent goes. I will probably keep up the 50% of calories idea, and I’ll definitely have a batch ready to go for +Future Chat at 12:30 on Sunday.

2:00 PM Fri.: 

Becca: I wonder if this would be a more nutritious and cost effective option? Im also wondering about fibre and roughage? The same issue arises when people juice everything…. Aren’t you missing out on the fibre?? 

My answer: That’s a great question Becca, I’ll give you the same link I gave yesterday… https://faq.soylent.com/…/sections/200307055-About-Soylent 

In particular, to answer the fibre question, yes…there is plenty of fibre. I can confirm this is not an issue. See this link: https://faq.soylent.com/hc/en-us/articles/200789985-Do-you-poop-on-Soylent-Yes

12:30 PM Fri.: Doing just fine, getting ready to have the usual 1.5 scoops for lunch. Here’s another question:

Brian: Are there any cost savings if one switches over from regular groceries/produce to Soylent? 

My answer: It really depends what you buy. If you go all out, it’s about $2-$2.50 a meal for Soylent. It would definitely be cheaper for me, but I know people who (allegedly) spend almost nothing on food… 

Brian also asked some great questions I answered in the comments below this post.

10:45 AM Fri.: Some really great questions and discussion already on Facebook!

Lisa: Food and cooking is a part of our culture, I don’t think I could get on board with giving that up but I am curious to know why you are doing this! Just for weight loss or like a get-healthy-and-all-the-nutrients-your-body-needs blitz? I can see how it would be really good for people hiking and camping and going on long expeditions where they might not have access to fresh food.

My answer: I’m trying it for a week because I’ve been so curious since it first came out. I don’t know that I could replace everything ever, but it’s been a really eye-opening experience really knowing exactly how much I’m eating in a day, how many calories I need to feel full. I’m also not replacing EVERYTHING, just about half the calories.

It’s not weight loss specifically, but I could certainly lose a little weight with this in combination with being more active. I generally eat WAY too many calories in a day because I just bored-eat, whereas if I know I’m only getting calories from this, I know how much I’m supposed to have for a given time, and I can KNOW objectively that I don’t need more. It also helps to not bring any food to work, so to not eat only this I’d have to cave and find a restaurant, and it hasn’t come close to that.

I love food, but I think this would be OK sometimes.

Anna: It can be the cure for world hunger! But also, I think some more third party info would be interesting to read. I don’t want all my questions about Soylent being answered by Soylent. I’m curious to see whether humans can actually get all of their nutrition from Soylent as it is!

My answer: I think there’s less third-party stuff simply because it’s so new. They’re working with a lot of data from historical nutrition research, it’s not like they’re guessing and hoping. I agree it’ll take a while until it pans out, and I really don’t like the taste of sucralose, so that’s kind of annoying. But overall, there are a lot of people who can really benefit from something like this! I’m also very curious about all of this stuff! 

9:38 AM Friday: It’s the start of Day 3 on Soylent as a partial food replacement. We learned a lot yesterday, and that tradition continues today. I just finished preparing my first 1.5 scoops for the day, and I’ve made it to the 2nd pouch. This morning, I tried the preparation method I discussed yesterday, mixing a little hot water with the powder before mixing fully and topping up with cold water. It worked PERFECTLY and now it’s not chunky at all. AWESOME!

I feel good this morning, I think I had a more average breakfast this morning, so I wasn’t hungry until about 9:30 AM. I really notice that even after only 2 days, my appetite is changing. It’s interesting being aware of your nutrition down to the minute level, I’m a lot more aware now, and I find I eat less when I know I don’t have food I like to look forward to. Not that this is bad tasting, but it’s not a “treat” in the traditional sense like a burger would be.

I decided that today I’m going to take some questions, so if you have anything you’re wondering about Soylent, let me know! I’ll be taking questions all day, and I might even make a video about my experiences this weekend! That will depend on your questions.