Better Living Through Chemistry

I ordered some Soylent this morning …

SoylentNo, not Soylent Green. That would be made out of people, silly! I ordered Soylent, which is a blend of chemicals designed to serve as a food substitute. Imagine if Ensure were designed by a bunch of techno wankers in Silicon Valley rather than Abbott Laboratories. As near as I can tell, that is what Soylent is. I read an article about this stuff at The New Yorker and I just had to try it.

So why would I order Soylent? I have two reasons; one kind of trivial and one not so trivial. The trivial reason I ordered Soylent is to present my figurative middle-finger to all the bean sprout-eating chemophobic fucktards out there. You know … the people who piss and moan about white bread because it’s white bread. They get on my nerves, and so I relish the thought of drinking a chemical toast to the motherfuckers.

The not so trivial reason why I ordered Soylent is that I actually forget to eat sometimes. I’ll start to lose weight and then I’ll have to start tracking my daily meals in an Excel spreadsheet to make sure I’m consuming enough calories. It’s not that I don’t like food. I love dining out and eating a nice steak every now and then. But the average meal, for most of us is just bland anyway. The Soylent isn’t meant to replace the steaks at Outback or the Pizzas at Mellow Mushroom or the burritos at Moe’s. Rather, it’s intended to replace some of the less than exciting meals … the peanut butter sandwiches, the macarni and cheese, the chicken pot pie.

In the past, I’ve used Ensure as an occasional calorie supplement. But the stuff isn’t cheap and the little eight once bottles only contain 250 or 350 calories. In contrast, this Soylent stuff sounds like calorie heaven. One pouch of the stuff contains three “meals” or one full days worth of calories. Each “meal” is 670 calories. Winner! If I could choke down a pouch of this junk a day, I would gain weight! But of course, I don’t really intend to replace all my meals with it — just some of them, maybe one or two a day.

Unfortunately, Soylent lists a 10-12 week wait time before new orders are shipped, so it may be a while before I can write about what it’s like (apparently, it’s only 1-2 weeks for reorders). I kind of have a feeling though for what it may be like. I’ve watched The VICE Guide to North Korea a few times, and in that glorious documentary (it’s in Part 1 of the videos), they describe what it’s like to eat in a fine North Korean restaurant:

They give you about three or four courses of absolutely inedible food. It’s just matter. It’s like fried … matter.

That’s kind of how I anticipate Soylent will taste: Like … matter. It’s going to need something, surely. Maybe ketchup? Some sugar? A sprig of parsley and a touch of cinnamon perhaps? A splash of Kahlua? Or perhaps some Brawndo … it’s got electrolytes! I dunno. We’ll see though! 😛

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3 Responses to Better Living Through Chemistry

  1. Rattlesnake says:

    I would like to try this as well. I have a similar attitude towards eating. Eating is usually a chore, unless it is something I really like. I’ve eaten those Ensure things as well, and I actually really like them. If only they weren’t so expensive. But apparently it is weird to find those things delicious, so maybe I would also find this stuff delicious.

  2. I don’t mind vanilla or strawberry Ensure. But at 350 calories for one bottle of Ensure Plus, it’s not much of a boost. These guys at Soylent seem to have gone about designing their product the way I would have designed it. It’s bottled “food.” Not some trendy diet thing that’s extra high in fiber or low in fat or carbohydrates or high in protein … it’s just “food.” It provides an almost the exact recommended balance of fat, carbohydrates, protein, fiber, etc. It sounds kind of neat!

    From what I’ve read, the taste does sound rather bland. Sugar and cinnamon, or maybe some vanilla extract might help it go down. Really hope I don’t have to wait the full 12 weeks for delivery though!

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