Soylent Update

I thought it was about time for an update on my Soylent experiment. I’ve been on about 90% Soylent for about a month and a half now. I ate food for a week and a half while my mom was visiting, and then for a week while I was out of town on a work meetup. Otherwise, I’ve mostly just been eating Soylent, except for the ocassional weekend pizza.

In this time, Soylent has gone through three different versions. Here’s how they’ve worked for me:

Version 1.0

The original. This was the version I was on for my first week.

The good:

  • Completely filling;
  • Made me feel really great — high energy, just felt really good; and
  • I don’t have to shop, cook, eat, or wash dishes.

The bad:

  • OMG gas. Peeled the paint off the walls.

Version 1.1

For this version, they halved the sweetener, which I really appreciated. It tasted less sweet and more neutral. They also added enzymes to help with the gas issues, but that didn’t make any difference to most people, and it made the formula a lot thinner and people complained of blood sugar spiking.

The good:

  • Less sweet;
  • I guess the texture was a bit smoother; and
  • I don’t have to shop, cook, eat, or wash dishes.

The bad:

  • Not filling at all. I got hungry pretty much right after having a glass; and
  • Didn’t make any difference to me at all, as far as gas goes.

Version 1.2

Because of the limited improvement in digestive issues and the satiety problems, they removed the enzymes for this version. They also replaced the fish and canola oil blend with a canola and algae oil blend, making Soylent 100% vegan.

The good:

  • Back to filling, although I still do not feel as satiated as I did with 1.0;
  • As with 1.0, I feel really great just in general;
  • I suppose it’s nice that it’s vegan. Morally speaking, we should all probably be vegan; and
  • I don’t have to shop, cook, eat, or wash dishes.

The bad:

  • Gas;
  • I have some bloating on this version that I didn’t with any previous; and
  • This version sometimes makes me feel a little bit nauseous after a serving. There are reports on the forums of a lot of people getting a “bad” batch of 1.2 — I think it’s more that this formula just causes a bit of nausea in people, but I have no idea why because they don’t seem to have changed much from 1.0 just in the basic formula.

Version 1.3 will be arriving soon, but the only real change with it is just that they made the packaging more efficient.

I have found that as far as the digestive issues go, I am fine if I have Soylent for breakfast, and then it becomes a little uncomfortable if I have it for lunch, but it’s not actually until I also have it for dinner that I really have a problem. I’ve tried various OTC aids as suggested in the Soylent forums (Beano, probiotics, kombucha, peppermint, activated charcoal, drinking very slowly, standing on your head for 1 hour after drinking and reciting the tenets of the Noble Eightfold Path), but so far, nothing really makes a substantial difference.

Until they fix the gas issues, I’m going to probably start having it for breakfast and dinner and eat a sandwich or something for lunch, and see if that helps. Not to mention, since I’ve been running more regularly, a pitcher of Soylent per day doesn’t seem to be quite enough to keep me from going to sleep hungry (although it should be).

If eating solid food once a day doesn’t fix these problems, I might need to throw in the towel until they fix the formula.

Everyone will tell you that specific food cravings mean you’re missing some essential nutrient: for me, I previously always craved rare, bloody red meat (no matter how many beans and lentils I ate, and even though I always took a high iron multivitamin). But on Soylent, I don’t get any food cravings at all, ever, which is really pretty amazing. Now, I will still absolutely eat an entire cake in one sitting should one just happen to appear before me, but not because I’m hungry for it.

I have been on the 28 bags per month subscription, but between the travel and ocassionally eating other food, I am not getting through my subscription nearly as fast as they’re shipping it. So I’ve paused it to finish up my stock, and then I might try the 14 bags/month subscription instead. I’m not sure that will be quite enough, though, and I wish they offered something in between that and 28.

I’ll update on this again in another month.

A Spider

I’ve been deeply into the fall malaise that hits me every other year or so, and have been feeling really shitty about how little I’m getting done and how much effort it takes to not do it.

A few days ago, I noticed this spider on the wall, a few inches from the doorframe that leads into the den. You know what? I just decided I’m going to start calling the den “the library.” Doesn’t that sound nice? It has a lot of books in it, so it’s the library now. Who can stop me?

Anyway, this spider just sat in that same exact place for like two days. And gradually, I began to feel superior to him. I mean, here I was, feeling like a slightly mobile pile of dirty laundry, dragging myself from the library to the office to the bedroom, not really managing to do much but work and sleep. But compared to this spider, I was a whirlwind of productivity. This guy couldn’t even be bothered to move an inch a day.

Not long after that, he moved to the doorframe proper. So, that took him about a week for maybe a five-inch journey. Sucker. I was absolutely smoking him, running circles around him. I started getting a little boost every time I went into the library, and saw his sorry ass, still pinned there, not succeeding.

Two days after that, he made it to the middle of the doorway, where he hunkered down underneath the loose floor rim thingy that I can’t be fucked to fix, and he nursed himself there for several days, ruminating on how far he’d come.

I was literally bounding over him, the idiot!

The next day, he pulled himself out from under the rim thingy, made quite a good bit of progress toward the sliding glass door, flipped over on his back, and died.

So, I’d been competing with a terminally ill spider, turns out. I’d been assuming this was the laziest, saddest, most chronically depressed spider ever, and all the time, he was making a heroic journey, one last major push in his very old age to die in the sunshine of the glass door. And he made it, the crazy bastard!

If I were a better sort of person, I’d take inspiration from this, but I’m not, so I just feel annoyed that even a spider is doing something more impressive with his life than I am.

His little corpse has been lying there for days now, because I’m too tired to sweep him up.



Last night, I arrived home with a bottle of wine, only to be unable to find my wine tool anywhere. This is odd because I live alone, have never had anyone over, and am not the sort of person who misplaces things. But it was nowhere to be found. I tried with no success to open the wine with scissors and a knife before hitting on this brilliant solution of screwing a screw into the cork, and then using pliers to pull it out.

I’m ok with admitting this is really the smartest and most capable I have ever felt in my entire life, and I’m still kind of depressed there weren’t witnesses.

A Pointless Follow-Up

I just wanted to mention that it has been nearly a month since I quit Facebook, and although I was a pretty heavy Facebook user, I have missed it exactly zero times! If you’ve thought about leaving, I highly recommend it. Why listen to people you haven’t talked to in fifteen years bitch endlessly about their boring lives when you could follow comics making hilarious jokes on Twitter instead? Free yourselves!

Election Day!

I’m not sure which possibility disturbs me more: that our votes are actually meaningless and “democracy” is a farce, or that it actually works and all of us blithering morons really do on some level decide which direction this country heads in.

Anyway, get out there and vote today! (As long as you’re voting the way I would; otherwise, please don’t.)