Category Archives: Health

Soylent Review: Week 1

It’s been a full week of Soylent replacing two meals a day, and I’m still alive and feeling pretty good.

But let’s rewind a little…

According to their website,

Soylent™ is a pioneer in food technology, producing convenient, complete foods designed to provide maximum nutrition with minimal effort.

I’d wanted to try Soylent for a while, but put it off because I didn’t think I could make it work while still cooking for 3 other people, and it seemed like an expensive  investment when I’d still be buying groceries. Also, I kind of love food…like I really enjoy cooking for others, trying new things, and the time spent while sharing meals. 

On the other hand, I love experimenting with things, especially ones that are health related. Plus, I don’t *always* love cooking. Sometimes I want to work right up to our regular dinner time, and I haven’t start cooking. Breakfast and lunch are also less exciting for me, sometimes I’d rather not stop what I’m doing to eat lunch. Another benefit I considered from drinking Soylent is that the nutrition is already figured out. I figured 5 servings=2000 calories, so I could easily cut that back to what I need and not worry about getting enough protein or vitamins, etc. Last major awesome point…it’s plant based. Soylent is 100% vegan!

How I’m Using It

Originally, I was going to go 100% Soylent for a month, but according to their Nutrient Profile Calculator, I’d be drinking more grams of fat than I need. According to their Nutrient Profile Calculator, I only need about 1186 calories and 40 g of fat. That means I need 3 servings (400 cals each) to meet my calorie goal, but 3 servings would be 60g of fat. I decided to cut it back to 2 servings of Soylent with 1 meal. 

Soylent Nutrient Calculator
Soylent Nutrient Calculator

 

Day -4: Ordering my Soylent

I ordered my Soylent directly from their website on a Friday evening.  I used a promo code to get 50% off my first order of 2.0 (the bottled drink). You can use this referral link here: http://soy.lt/r/Q58Ei51bl9 (no benefit to me…just 50% off for you).

Along with my 2.0 subscription, I also ordered the powder with 10% off plus your first order comes with a free pitcher and scoop.

I also have a case of Cacao coming my way via Amazon with 20% off your first subscribe and save order.

Day 0: Shipment Arrived

My order shipped Monday and was delivered Tuesday. I would’ve started Tuesday afternoon, but it wasn’t delivered until 4pm, so official start day is Wednesday.

Day 1: Well…

I made the first pitcher of the powder the night before so it could chill in the fridge. Then I read it needed to be consumed within 48 hours, so I planned to drink the pitcher for breakfast and lunch on Wednesday and Thursday, sharing some with my husband.

Straight up, it wasn’t exactly my favorite. It has an aftertaste that isn’t fantastic. I did fill me up and I wasn’t hungry after drinking it, but that could be because of the taste.

Day 2: Better

 I still had half a pitcher in the fridge so I decided to use it as a smoothie base. I blended the already mixed Soylent with some frozen strawberries and it was a million times better. 

Day 3: Trying the 2.0

The Soylent drink tastes like the leftover milk from a bowl of cereal. Generally, that wouldn’t be my cup of tea, but I really love the taste of this. 

Days 4-7

So far, I’ve had 2 servings a day + 1 meal. I’ve never felt hungry, which was my main fear. Even if it was all in my head I was worried I’d think I was hungry. I’ve actually felt really good. Not hungry or tired. I haven’t noticed any difference at all really.

Drink vs Powder

The drink is more convenient with no mixing , there are 6g less sugar than the powder, and it tastes better.  The downside is that it is more expensive. The cost of a serving of the powder is about $1.54, where the drink is $2.69. I like the drink better, but when the powder is mixed with fruit it tastes fine.

Health

Around day 4 I was down a pound since starting Soylent. I think it was just a coincidence because I’m back to where I started now. 

I’ve only been drinking 800 calories of Soylent, but I’m positive I’ve been eating more than 400 calories in my one meal. I can see how this could be helpful for someone trying to get more calories in their diet.

In January I had my blood work done and I plan on having it done again in July. I realize this is not a scientific method, but at by July 2/3rds of my meals will have been from Soylent for 2 months. I’m curious to see if anything significant stands out.

I always planned on drinking Soylent for a month, but at this point I plan to continue drinking it for the foreseeable  future.

Would you be open to trying Soylent? 

 

Giving up Coffee

Pumpkin ChaiThere has been one resolution that I have been faithful to. It’s been 744 days since my last cup of coffee.

I decided to give up coffee because I was becoming dependent on it. I was never really a big coffee drinker and when I started working from home I didn’t drink it at all. Then occasionally, if I was up late or needed to get up extra early the next day, I’d ask my husband to make an extra cup for me. Then, I started asking him to make a whole pot and I’d finish what he didn’t drink. Then, I started making my own whole pot after I finished the first one. It seemed to get worse and worse.

It finally got to the point (over months, maybe a year) that if I didn’t have coffee, I would feel like a zombie. I couldn’t concentrate on anything, but also, by 2 pm I could barely keep my eyes open.

Another driving force is seeing how coffee affects other people. There are a few people I actively avoid if I know they haven’t had their coffee yet. I never want to be that dependent on something unnecessary.

It was hard for the first few days of giving it up. Really hard. It was set in my mind that I wasn’t drinking it, so there was never a temptation, but I felt horrible. I could’ve passed as an extra on The Walking Dead. After about 2 weeks everything was fine.

Now I usually drink tea throughout the day. Sometimes it’s black, sometimes it’s caffeine-free herbal. I just like to have something warm to drink in the morning, even warm lemon water will do. One nice thing about tea is that I use one tea bag (I bag loose leaf) and the caffeine diminishes throughout the day, The second cup has less caffeine than the first, the third even less, etc. My only new-ish rule is no caffeine of any kind 4 hours before bed time.

I’m oddly proud and very happy about the decision to give up coffee. I feel better throughout the day, I’m never jittery, no stomach cramps, and don’t crash in the afternoon. I don’t even notice a difference between having a cup of green tea vs a cup of lemon water.

I’m positive I’ll never be a coffee drinker again, but I don’t want to say I’ll never have another cup. I could see having a cup while traveling, or in a social situation. I am excited to see how long I can keep my streak up though.

 

2017 Goals

One of my goals for this coming year (like every year) is to write more here. I tend to write a bunch of drafts and never feel like they are good enough to actually publish. But, I’m going to try to start writing anything, even if it’s a post saying that I don’t want to write anything, once a week.

So, here is a list of my 2017 goals. They’re all things I’ve been contemplating/working on already, and are pretty attainable.

  • Be more organized…desk and office
  • Language learning…Duolingo daily, starting with German. Goals of either every day for 6 months or finish the German tree.
  • Morning pages daily
  • Use time better…schedule each day out more…spend less time on social media/Reddit
  • Be more active during the day
  • Blood work…have it done every 6 or 12 months
  • Meditate more regularly
  • January goal of writing down daily gratitude

Well, we’re 6 days into the new year and my list is going okay. Unfortunately, Tuesday I came down with the worst cold and didn’t want to get out of bed. Thursday, my throat felt like sandpaper, so the whole “being more active” thing hasn’t been going so well. Same with being more organized. I just put all the extra papers and crap on the floor next to my desk. The office is still a mess from Christmas crafts, but I want to get it all cleaned up as soon as I don’t feel like I’m dying.

I’m going to give myself credit for using time effectively. Yes, that meant doing the bare minimum of work and then napping, but it’s what I need to do right now. I bought a Happy Planner and like it so far. (I will never ever ‘scrapbook’ my planner…no cute emoji stickers here.) I originally bought a Bloom Daily planner since it has goal setting pages, but I couldn’t get over the square-ish size, so I put it up on eBay.

I also started the year off strong meditating for the first 3 days (plus days before the new year), and then fell asleep at 7 for the next two days so I didn’t end up doing it.

I’v been using Duolingo for the past month to work on German, so that is going well. I haven’t missed a day yet. I was hoping to have German done in 6 months, but from what I read, that seems too fast. Danish is next on the list unless they have Greek done for the app by then. I started just doing it on my phone, but then I went back and wrote down notes of everything and it’s really helping to retain it.

I ordered two blood tests through WellnessFX to have done now and again in 6-12 months. I wanted to do it earlier in the week, but didn’t want to fast and then drive the 30 mins to Quest Diagnostics. I have plans to go today though.

Morning pages and gratitude have also been going relativity well. I printed out a “Today, I am thankful for…” sheet with 30 lines to fill in and I’ve stuck with it. I started doing morning pages (writing 3-ish pages of anything when you first get up) after reading The Artist’s Way, but it’s really hard for my to stick with. I joke that I’m allergic to morning pages. So far, I’ve written every day though.

A tool that has helped me stay on track and visualize what I need/want to get done has been Habitica. It’s an app/website that helps you create better habits or break bad habits by making in into a game. You create your character and list your habits, daily goals, and one time to-dos, and you get points when you check them off. You can level up your character, battle bosses, and a bunch of other fun things. The game aspect is pretty cool, I like the rewards of finding items, but it also just helps a lot to have a checklist that I can see (I have it on my phone, but also always leave it open in a browser tab) and that resets every day.

Do you have any new years goals or resolutions? Do you usually stick to them?