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Soylent (drink)

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Soylent (drink)

Place of origin United States
Region or state North America
Creator Rob Rhinehart
Invented 2013
  Media: Soylent
Soylent Powder Version
Soylent powder prepared as a drink
Type Powder prepared as a drink
Course Main course
Serving temperature Refrigerated or room temperature
Main ingredients 1.5:[1] Rice Protein, Oat Flour, Omega-3 Fatty Acids extracted from Algae
Ingredients generally used 1.5:[1] Rice Starch, Modified Food Starch, Soy Lecithin, Cellulose, Salt, Canola and Oleic Sunflower Oil, life'sDHA Oil Powder, Xanthan Gum, Sucralose, and other minor ingredients
Food energy
(per 500 ml serving)
1.5: 500 kcal[1][2]
Glycemic index 90%
  Media: Soylent Powder Version
Soylent Drink (Liquid) Version
Bottle of Soylent 2.0 Drink (Liquid) Version.
Type Liquid in a bottle
Course Main course
Serving temperature Refrigerated or room temperature
Main ingredients 2.0:[3] Soy Protein Isolate, Algal Oil, Canola Oil, Rice Starch, Oat Fiber
Ingredients generally used 2.0:[3] Gellan Gum, Soy Lecithin, Isomaltooligosaccharide, salt and other minor ingredients
Food energy
(per 400 ml serving)
2.0: 400 kcal[3]
Nutritional value
(per 400 ml serving)
Protein 20 g
Fat 21 g
Carbohydrate 37 g
Glycemic index 90%
  Media: Soylent Drink (Liquid) Version

Soylent is a meal replacement beverage, advertised as a "staple meal", available in both liquid and powdered forms. Its creators state that Soylent meets all nutritional requirements for an average adult.[4]

It was first created and tested by software engineer Rob Rhinehart as a self-experiment in nutrition. Subsequently, the powdered version of Soylent was developed into the first product line of the company Rosa Labs, who currently markets and sells the formulation.

Rosa Labs states that the current formulation is based on recommendations of the Institute of Medicine[5] and that Soylent meets the current Food and Drug Administration requirements to be sold as a food.[6] Rosa Labs also states that Soylent includes all of the elements of a healthy diet, without excess amounts of sugars, saturated fats, or cholesterol.[7]


On February 13, 2013 Rhinehart detailed his initial 30-day experiment in food replacement[8] on his blog before later sharing the nutritional information and original formula[9] for interested parties. Posts to his blog over the next two months detailed modifications to his personal formula.

These modifications led to a crowdfunding campaign on Tilt that raised over US$3 million[4][10] aimed at moving the powdered drink from concept into production. As of 2015, this crowdfunding campaign remains the most funded food-related crowdfunding project ever accomplished. After the campaign, Soylent had venture capital financing for a seed round of $1.5 million[11] to further develop proof of concept. Media reports have detailed how operations began for Rosa Labs in April 2014, using a relatively small US$500 system to ship the first US$2.6 million worth of product.[12] In January 2015, Soylent received $20 million in Series A round funding, led by venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz.[13]

Prior to June 2015, Soylent was only available for purchase and shipment to those in the United States. On June 15, 2015, it was announced that Soylent would begin shipping to Canada[14] at the same price in US dollars as for United States customers. Expansion to European countries is a stated future goal.

In July 2015, it was announced that Soylent would move its corporate headquarters to Broadway Media Center, located in downtown Los Angeles.[15]

Product history

In the first week of May 2014, the first shipments of U.S. orders of Soylent 1.0 began.[16] There have been subsequent changes, each called a new "version". Since Soylent 1.2 in November 2014, all versions have been vegan.[17] Version 1.4, introduced in February 2015, used a carbohydrate/fat/protein ratio of 43/40/17, made so considering the advice of F. Xavier Pi-Sunyer, M.D., a professor of medicine at Columbia University.[18] Version 1.5, introduced in June 2015, further adjusted the ratio to 45/40/15,[19] and has a glycemic index of 65 and a glycemic load of 35.[20]

On August 3, 2015, the company announced "Soylent 2.0," which is the first ready-to-drink Soylent product introduced by the company. The pre-mixed product comes in a 400 calorie recyclable bottle and debuted on September 9, 2015.[21]

Version Changes Date
Soylent 1.0 First full version. Ingredients were finalized in January 2014, which use rice as the protein source[22] and shipments began in April[23] (vegan) and May[24] (regular) of 2014. Early 2014
Soylent 1.1 The sucralose was decreased, giving it a more neutral flavor, and new digestive enzymes were added.[25] October 2, 2014[26]
Soylent 1.2 Omega-3 fatty acid from fish sources was replaced with omega-3 from algae, making the drink suitable for vegans and the enzymes added in Soylent 1.1 were removed.[17] November 10, 2014[17]
Soylent 1.3 Dipotassium phosphate was added and shipping box sizes were reduced.[27] December 11, 2014[27]
Soylent 1.4 Fats were incorporated into the powder which eliminated the need for the oil bottles, resulting in less packaging required in the shipping boxes and isomaltulose was added. Gum acacia was removed.[28] February 25, 2015[29]
Soylent 1.5 Improvements to texture from a reduction to oat flour and an addition of emulsifiers. Removal of powdered safflower and flaxseed oil which were both replaced by canola oil powder, supplementing the existing powdered high oleic sunflower oil and algal oil.[19] June 1, 2015[19]
Soylent 2.0 First pre-mixed Soylent liquid product and it alters the fat/carb/protein ratios to 47/33/20, which results in a glycemic index of 49.2 and a glycemic load of 16.7.[20] About half of the lipid calories come from algal sources and it uses soy for its protein source.[21] September 9, 2015[30]


The product's name is based on its namesake foodstuff in Harry Harrison's 1966 science fiction novel Make Room! Make Room! -- named as a portmanteau of its main ingredients soya and lentils. The term is, however, commonly associated with its 1973 film adaptation Soylent Green, in which the eponymous food supplement is made from human remains.[31]


In April 2013, Rhinehart said he was spending US$154.62 per month on Soylent, yielding a diet of 11,000 kilojoules (2,600 kcal) per day[32] while a diet of medical food such as Jevity would cost US$456 per month for 8,400 kilojoules (2,000 kcal).[33]

Soylent 1.0, which began shipping commercially in May 2014, was supplied in quantities of 7, 14, or 28 bags, with one bag providing "3+" meals.[34] As of July 2015 Soylent version 1.5 powder was available in the US and Canada for US$85 for 7 bags, with a reduced price for larger quantities or having a monthly subscription.[35][36] The lowest cost-per-meal option is the monthly subscription at a cost of US$280 for 28 bags, which calculates to US$10 per day, US$2.50 per meal (at recommended serving size of 4 meals/day), or $3.33 (3 meals/day). The tag line on Soylent's main website states "A full day of balanced nutrition made in 3 minutes for $3/meal."[36]

On August 31, 2015 the price of powdered Soylent version 1.5 dropped 23% of its price both subscription and one-time payments to US$54 and $64 for 7 bags respectively. This means the subscription costs US$7.71 per day.[37] The subscription to liquid Soylent version 2.0 costs US$29 for twelve 400 kcal bottles, which works out to US$12.1 per day on a 2000 calorie diet.


Powdered Version (1.5)

A glass of powdered Soylent after preparation.

The following summarizes the nutrition facts and ingredients for Soylent 1.5 (powder version).[1] The nutrition facts are based on one serving of 115 grams (4.1 oz).[1] Each Soylent pouch contains four servings.

Soylent 1.5 (Powdered Version) Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 115g Servings per Container: 4
Calories 500
Calories from fat 200
Amount per Serving % Daily Value*
Total Fat 23g 35%
Saturated Fat 2.5g 13%
Trans Fat 0g N/A
Cholesterol 0 mg 0%
Sodium 360 mg 16%
Potassium 866 mg 25%
Total Carbohydrate 57g 19%
Dietary Fiber 3g 12%
Sugars 15g
Protein 20g
Nutrition Facts (continued)
% Daily Value
Vitamin A 25%
Vitamin C 37%
Calcium 30%
Iron 23%
Vitamin D 26%
Vitamin E 26%
Vitamin K 28%
Thiamin 25%
Riboflavin 25%
Niacin 25%
Vitamin B6 25%
Folate 25%
Vitamin B12 25%
Biotin 25%
Pantothenic Acid 25%
Iodine 30%
Magnesium 23%
Zinc 25%
Selenium 25%
Copper 28%
Manganese 25%
Chromium 25%
Molybdenum 25%

Drink Version (2.0)

The following summarizes the nutrition facts and ingredients for Soylent 2.0 (drink version). The nutrition facts are based on one bottle (414 ml).[3]

Soylent 2.0 (Drink Version) Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 1 bottle Soylent (414 mL) Servings per Container: 1
Calories 400
Calories from fat 190
Amount per Serving % Daily Value*
Total Fat 21g 35%
Saturated Fat 2g 10%
Trans Fat 0g N/A
Cholesterol 0 mg 0%
Sodium 300 mg 13%
Potassium 700 mg 20%
Total Carbohydrate 37g 12%
Dietary Fiber 3g 12%
Sugars 9g
Protein 20g
Nutrition Facts (continued)
% Daily Value
Vitamin A 20%
Vitamin C 20%
Calcium 20%
Iron 20%
Vitamin D 20%
Vitamin E 20%
Vitamin K 20%
Thiamin 20%
Riboflavin 20%
Niacin 20%
Vitamin B6 20%
Folate 20%
Vitamin B12 20%
Biotin 20%
Pantothenic Acid 20%
Iodine 20%
Magnesium 20%
Zinc 20%
Selenium 20%
Copper 20%
Manganese 20%
Chromium 20%
Molybdenum 20%
Chloride 15%


Soylent contains soy lecithin and sucralose as masking flavors and to adjust appearance, texture and smell.[38] Rhinehart calls the flavor "minimal", "broad" and "nonspecific".[39] Before version 1.4, vanillin was included as an ingredient for flavoring.[40]

Reviews on the taste of powdered Soylent vary widely. Positive reviewers were "pleasantly surprised" with the "rich, creamy, and strangely satisfying" flavor,[41] or likened it to that of a vanilla milkshake with the texture of pancake batter.[42] Negative reviewers have called it a "punishingly boring, joyless product", "like someone wrung out a dishtowel into a glass",[43] "purposefully bland", and compared the taste to "homemade nontoxic Play-Doh".[41][44]

Due to the way in which both powdered and liquid varieties of Soylent are released by version, slight taste variances are introduced in every subsequent version, leading to an updated taste profile.

Proposed Proposition 65 lawsuit

On August 13, 2015, non-profit environmental and corporate social responsibility watchdog As You Sow filed a notice of intent to pursue a lawsuit against the makers of Soylent, claiming that Soylent did not adequately label its product given the levels of lead and cadmium present in the drink. The basis for the lawsuit lies in California's Proposition 65, a law that requires additional labeling for food products containing trace amounts of certain substances. Although Soylent contains levels of lead and cadmium far below the national safety levels set by the FDA, it does contain 12 to 25 times the level of lead and 4 times the level of cadmium allowable in a product without additional labeling as specified by Proposition 65.[45][46] A lawyer who has worked on settlements of Proposition 65 suits described the case as "alarmist" as the levels are well below FDA limits.[47] Soylent's website currently displays the required Proposition 65 warning.[47] As You Sow proposes that, since Soylent is marketed as a complete replacement for all other meals, these levels may be harmful.[45] The claim is of levels allowable concerning reproductive toxicity, which are considerably lower than levels allowable concerning poisoning or carcinogenicity.[48]

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e Soylent Nutrition Facts. Retrieved 1 June 2015.
  2. ^
  3. ^ a b c d Soylent 2.0 (Liquid) Nutrition Facts. Retrieved 13 Sept 2015.
  4. ^ a b
  5. ^ Nutrition - Soylent. Retrieved 10 June 2015.
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^ How I Stopped Eating Food. Feb 13, 2013. Retrieved April 4, 2015
  9. ^ What's in Soylent Feb 14, 2013. Retrieved April 4, 2015
  10. ^
  11. ^ Crowdfunding Darling Soylent Nets $1.5 Million In VC Funding. October 22, 2013
  12. ^
  13. ^ Soylent Raises Money. Retrieved 22 January 2015.
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^ a b c
  18. ^ Nutrition advisor for Soylent. 16 March 2015.
  19. ^ a b c
  20. ^ a b
  21. ^ a b
  22. ^
  23. ^
  24. ^
  25. ^ Soylent gets a version bump to 1.1—new flavor, new gut flora help. Retrieved 26 February 2015.
  26. ^
  27. ^ a b Soylent 1.3 Shipping Today. Retrieved 11 December 2014.
  28. ^ Soylent 1.4 begins shipping today. Retrieved 28 February 2015.
  29. ^
  30. ^
  31. ^
  32. ^
  33. ^
  34. ^
  35. ^
  36. ^ a b
  37. ^
  38. ^
  39. ^
  40. ^
  41. ^ a b
  42. ^
  43. ^
  44. ^
  45. ^ a b
  46. ^
  47. ^ a b
  48. ^

External links

  • Official website
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