100% Honest Review: Soylent 2.0, the meal replacer...

why you should trust me...

I'm a doctor of physical therapy and certified lymphedema therapist. In 2017, I will receive an academic doctorate in health science. I only provide brutally honest views on my blog, and always disclose when I'm sponsored or if I had received free samples in exchange for an honest review. DisclosureThe good people at Soylent provided me with 36 bottles of Soylent 2.0 to sample and review. Other than receiving the samples to review (plus two Soylent t-shirts!), I was not financially compensated for this 100% honest post. The opinions I've published are completely my own, based on my experience.

to begin... 

As I'm writing this post, I'm finishing a bottle of Soylent 2.0.

I'll admit it; I was never a huge fan of Soylent until Soylent 2.0 came out. Why, you ask? Well, my husband used to mix up batches of Soylent, not finish them, and leave them to grow mold in our fridge. Who had to flush said moldy Soylent down the toilet? Yours truly. It was such a hassle to mix and shake it up. I did it a few times and worked out my biceps and wrists. Even after vigorous mixing, you can end up with some powdery chunks  here and there. The goopy powder concoction, while okay tasting, was not addictive. 

Soylent 2.0, however, is creamy and tasty. This version of the meal replacer comes pre-mixed and packaged in convenient white bottles. I can only rave about the packaging... you can load 12 bottles in a box straight into your fridge. And because they're plain white bottles, they begged me to doodle all over them! See some of my creations below:

OverHams OverSoy... Overwatch characters as hamster fan art on Soylent 2.0 bottles.

OverHams OverSoy... Overwatch characters as hamster fan art on Soylent 2.0 bottles.

A Spaceman and space pandas, Dancing Groot, space whale and jellies, plus eight Star Wars References over Soylent 2.0 Bottles... #SharpieArt fanart

A Spaceman and space pandas, Dancing Groot, space whale and jellies, plus eight Star Wars References over Soylent 2.0 Bottles... #SharpieArt fanart

Pokemon Go Pokemon as DC Universe Justice League characters, fanart over Soylent 2.0 bottles using colored Sharpies.

Pokemon Go Pokemon as DC Universe Justice League characters, fanart over Soylent 2.0 bottles using colored Sharpies.

taste and texture...

Think cashew soy milk, think unsweetened Ensure. (Sometimes, I think of breast milk because the color's similar. Okay, sorry to the faint of heart for the imagery. I'm sure your mind can unsee this. My eyes, by the way, can't unsee some recent NSFW Orlando Bloom pics on twitter... ack, but I digress!) Soylent 2.0's texture is smooth and velvety (with slight hints of the powder mix, so if you search for it with your tongue, you can feel the grittiness), and the taste is subtle and good, reminding me of cream. It isn't very sweet, it isn't salty-- it's a soy protein "shake" of some sorts. I crave it. It does leave a bit of a lingering aftertaste on the tongue. Though it's made with algal oil, Soylent 2.0 does not taste fishy or like seaweed. (Thank goodness!)

It is a vegan food, and it's nut and lactose free. Soylent is transparent about how this food is not GMO-free. I appreciate the transparent labeling, and frankly, I'm more adverse towards antibiotics and hormones in our food than towards GMOs, but that's a whole different story. 

Tip: Drink Soylent 2.0 after it's chilled. 




pricing and saving money...

You pay around $33.00 (USD) for a box of 12 bottles. Each bottle provides you with 400 calories. You're paying less than three dollars for a full meal. You really can't beat the price. If you replace one meal a day with Soylent (like me), your box of 12 will last you 12 days. I pay around $16 dollars for lunch at NYC, and at least $12 for lunch in Brooklyn during work. By replacing your lunches with Soylent everyday, you're fattening your wallets! 

feeling full...

I typically finish a bottle of Soylent over 15 minutes. You really don't want to gulp down 400 calories without staggering. I feel full from drinking Soylent for around three to five hours after. During that time, I don't crave sugary treats. I've found myself, in general, not craving carbs and junk food as much. On days where I've had bigger meals, I find myself desiring nothing but Soylent for my last meal of the day. Sometimes, I have Soylent for breakfast. Most work days, since my lunch options are limited, I have a bottle of Soylent 2.0 for lunch around 12PM and I come home around 5PM to have some light snacks before dinner at 7:30PM. 

replacing "real food"

Soylent is not for everyone. For many people, eating is pleasure. We have teeth for a reason: to eat, to chomp, to grind, to chew, to masticate, and our palates and tongues to savor flavors. Our noses to inhale the fragrant aromas of freshly cooked meals. I don't think it's Soylent's mission to convince us to replace every meal with Soylent, but they have certainly provided us with a convenient alternative to energize our bodies. We can potentially become healthier eaters. Instead of downing a 900-calorie fast food meal for lunch, we can energize ourselves with a bottle that's packed with nutrients at half the caloric cost. Soylent provides an "even release of energy." I find that I don't feel sluggish after drinking Soylent, I feel less tired during the day, and I'm a better at portioning food during breakfast and dinner. Whenever I drink a bottle of Soylent, I don't have any additional food with it. I do like mixing a teaspoon of ground flax seed with a bottle. This adds needed fiber to Soylent. 

shelf life

Update on June 29, 2017: So Soylent 2.0, when left unopened in the bottle, has a shelf life of around a year. A commenter mentioned that it can't be real food if it can last that long in the bottle, and that the best foods spoil quickly. I agree! So I'm happy to say that I've had opened bottles of Soylent 2.0 spoil in less than 3 days after opening and not refrigerating it. Spoiled Soylent is yucky...

losing weight...

After two work weeks of drinking a bottle of Soylent 2.0 every day for lunch, I have neither gained nor lost any weight. I don't think that you should try to lose weight and start a "Soylent Diet." I think you should continue to eat, learn to make healthier choices, and portion your food better if your intention is to become fit and healthy. 

I have noticed that my arm muscles appear toner, and my waist slightly slimmer, but this could be all due to my summer tan and sweating in sweltering NYC heat as I run after Phil at parks. I haven't gone for blood work recently, and I intend to soon, to see if my fasting glucose, cholesterol, and A1c levels have decreased.  

side effects?

Some people on the net report odiferous flatulence. Others, stomachaches. When I first tried Soylent 2.0, I had a bottle for breakfast and then a bottle for lunch. My stomach acted up that night and into the next morning. My stomach has been fine since then, so I'm not sure what happened. Perhaps my digestion system was going through a detox of some sort?

customer service...

The good people at Soylent are responsive, fun, and friendly. All my interactions with Soylent people have been pleasant. I even drew their CEO, Robert Rhinehart, as a chubby panda and they're cool with it ;) 

made by people, not with people...

Soylent is made by people, not with people or any people parts... Don't confuse it with Soylent Green, though I think it was Soylent's intention to slightly creep us out with a nod to that movie.

new flavors cacao and nectar

Soylent has sent me both new flavors to try. In my very honest opinion, I find myself unable to drink down Nectar. It has a very strong taste and after-taste. Imagine drinking pureed Fruity Loops in milk, with an additional perfume taste kick to it. Cacao is okay but I still prefer regular, Soylent 2.0...

newest cafe flavors Chai and Vanilla latte Soylent reviewed

... pending sampling

final thoughts...

If you can't tell from all my bottle art that I'm a fan of Soylent 2.0, then let me tell you this: I'm a fan of Soylent 2.0. I would give it a perfect score when I don't feel any more grittiness (or chalkiness). I can't complain about the taste or the price. You can also conveniently order shipments of Soylent through Amazon. With Soylent, I don't have to worry about what to eat for lunch at work. When I'm running late in the morning, I can also grab a bottle to drink during my commute. I'm so happy that my husband no longer has to mix up batches of Soylent that become moldy messes in our fridge. This version of Soylent has a shelf life of approximately a year. 

I happily give Soylent 2.0, 4.5 Pandas out of Pandas! I hope you'll give Soylent 2.0 a try!