Please do not volunteer for this study

Hey, everybody!  Here’s a fun little medical quiz for today.  Can anyone tell me what the sharp whitish pointy things in your mouth are called?

Did you say “teeth”?  Excellent.  Pat yourself on the back.  Does anyone know why we have them?

Did you say “to eat things”?  Strong work.  Have a biscuit.

Why am I asking these questions, which my preschooler would find bleedingly obvious were I to put them to him?  Because apparently there is a man out there who wants to render them superfluous.

Food is the fossil fuel of human energy. It is an enormous market full of waste, regulation, and biased allocation with serious geo-political implications. And we’re deeply dependent on it. In some countries people are dying of obesity, others starvation. In my own life I resented the time, money, and effort the purchase, preparation, consumption, and clean-up of food was consuming. I am pretty young, generally in good health, and remain physically and mentally active. I don’t want to lose weight. I want to maintain it and spend less energy getting energy.

Food?  How very passé.  The future is now, friends.  It’s time to push aside those plates of varied, flavorful meals and transition to a diet of revolting-looking sludge.

There are no meats, fruits, vegetables, or breads here. Besides olive oil for fatty acids and table salt for sodium and chloride nothing is recognizable as food. I researched every substance the body needs to survive, plus a few extras shown to be beneficial, and purchased all of them in nearly raw chemical form from a variety of sources. The section on the ingredients ended up being quite long so I’ll save that for a future post. The first morning my kitchen looked more like a chemistry lab than a cookery, but I eventually ended up with an thick, odorless, beige liquid. I call it ‘Soylent’. At the time I didn’t know if it was going to kill me or give me superpowers. I held my nose and tepidly lifted it to my mouth, expecting an awful taste.

It was delicious! I felt like I’d just had the best breakfast of my life. It tasted like a sweet, succulent, hearty meal in a glass, which is what it is, I suppose. I immediately felt full, yet energized, and started my day. Several hours later I got hungry again. I quickly downed another glass and immediately felt relief. The next day I made another batch and felt even better. My energy level had skyrocketed at this point, I felt like a kid again. But on day 3 I noticed my heart was racing and my energy level was suddenly dropping. Hemoglobin! I think, my heart is having trouble getting enough oxygen to all my organs. I check my formula and realize iron is completely absent. I quickly purchase an iron supplement and add it to the mixture the next day. I have to be more careful not to leave anything out. [emphasis added]

First of all, I’m not sure I’d trust someone who’d choose the horrifying name “Soylent” for his product when it comes to matters of taste.  I haven’t sampled his concoction, but I’m still willing to place a benjamin on bacon and eggs in a flavor match-up.

But the above bolded segment tells you all you really need to know about how seriously to take this man’s claims about the health benefits of his nutrient slurry.  (Hint: not very.)  Whatever the reason for his heart rate and lack of vigor, it had nothing to do with his hemoglobin level.  Adding iron (which was probably a good call in the long run) and any resultant spring in the step were 100% placebo effect.  The average lifespan of a red blood cell is 120 days.  Unless our subject had suffered a massive bleed or developed a sudden hemolytic condition (which would have caused blood loss or destruction, respectively), no matter what the nutritional deprivation he had induced from an all-Soylent (*yeeeeach*) diet, his hemoglobin count would have been essentially unchanged in a span of three days.

His post goes on to talk about how great he feels, how wonderful it is to be unchained from the constraints of food prep, and how marvelous his blood tests turned out.  (More on that later.)  We should all chuck our fridges out, convert our pantries into pottery studios and embrace our new Soylent-enabled (*bleeeeeeargh*) life.

Now, the world is too full of crackpot nonsense to go after each and every cockamamie notion on the Internet.  But this particular brand of nuttery caught the eye of someone at Wonkblog, and that caught the eye of our own Jason Kuznicki, who decided to disrupt my otherwise serene state of mind and tell me about it.  (The man who came up with this is named Rob Rhinehart, by the bye.)

Quoth Wonkblog:

Rhinehart is currently looking for volunteers to try Soylent and then conduct blood tests — and, full disclosure, I’ve offered to try it — but if you’re serious about never eating regular food again, real medical food from Abbott or Nestlé is the way to go.

Friends, please do not volunteer for this study.  As the (actually quite sane) preceding post makes clear, liquid diets have been manufactured for many, many years.  We use them for patients who are incapable of eating, and I’ve got a great many patients in my own practice who subsist wholly or in part on one of the many nutritionist-approved liquid diets out there.  If you’re determined to do without the smell and flavor of food, then I hope you find the yummy, yummy taste of Jevity more to your liking.

But beyond the fact that liquid diets with a proven track record of safety are already available, this man’s plans to test his own formula’s safety are nonsense and a waste of money.  Furthermore, his entire venture is built on a faulty premise.

In a follow-up post in which Rinehart tells you what’s in his scrumptious blend, he asks for volunteers to drink it for a week and obtain a set of blood tests before and after.

I think it makes more sense to test this more thoroughly, and then produce it at scale.

So…I’ll just ship you some of my batch. If you are willing to consume exclusively soylent, and get a CBC, chem panel, and lipid blood test before and after the week and share your results with me it’s on the house. Bonus points for getting a psych evaluation before and after. The brain is an organ. I can ship it worldwide but it would be nice if you were in San Francisco so we can meet in person.

What a worthless waste of time and money those tests will be.  I’ve already explained why the CBC (which would be to check for anemia) would be worthless in that span of time.  So, too, will the chem panel and lipid tests.  Assuming a person has functional kidneys and isn’t consuming a truly (and frankly unpalatably) large quantity of sodium or potassium, a chem panel is going to reflect the body’s ability to cope with relatively large fluctuations in electrolyte consumption.  It is controversial to what extent diet even affects our bodies’ lipid levels, but even for those patients whose diets have been modified by medical order we don’t bother rechecking lipid panels for at least three months after making the change.  One week’s worth of difference?  Random noise.  And I pity the poor psychologist who is meant to figure out what kinds of neurocognitive tests are going to assess what affect this regimen has on brain function.

But beyond the silliness of ordering worthless tests, let’s just look at the silliness that underlies this whole nonsense.  Rhinehart’s whole schtick is that food is a foolish waste of time to produce and prepare.  His whole Soylent (*uuuuuuuuuuuuuuugh*) project is based on the idea that chugging it down as a sole source of nourishment is so very much more efficient and cost-effective.  Except:

I am reticent to provide exact brand names and instructions because I am not fully convinced of the diet’s safety for a physiology different than mine. What if I missed something that’s essential for someone of a different race or age group? Also, the cost is low but some of the ingredients are hard to find and/or must be purchased in bulk which can be an investment, and some of my suppliers are quite small and would have their stock depleted if many people rushed to purchase the exact same item I did.

You know what’s not hard to find, doesn’t have to be purchased in bulk unless desired, and is (at least in this country) in ample supply?  Food, available at a grocery store near you.  It has the added bonus of being delicious, to boot!  I have neither the expertise nor the desire to try to calculate the cost of producing the various mineral supplements Rhinehart blends to make his brew as compared to real food, nor to try and figure out the cost of hunting down suppliers for all of them and the time it takes to measure and mix them.  Maybe it really is cheaper on a macro level, I dunno.  Color me skeptical.

Can you live on it safely?  Possibly, though if you’re really in the mood to jettison food I’d suggest a replacement with a proven track record.  I happen to think there are probably lots of things in the foods we eat that are good for us but that we either don’t know about or with benefits we can’t properly measure, and that exclusively consuming a man-made alternative means you’re likely missing something.  But if you’re really wanting to test how good something is for you and its effects on your body, you’ll need a much longer trial than one week.

Me?  I’ll be over here eating food.  It tastes good, and it’s fun to make and share.

Russell Saunders

Russell Saunders is the ridiculously flimsy pseudonym of a pediatrician in New England. He has a husband, three sons, daughter, cat and dog, though not in that order. He enjoys reading, running and cooking. He can be contacted at blindeddoc using his Gmail account. Twitter types can follow him @russellsaunder1.


  1. Millicent has a cousin I’ll call Letitia, who is a librarian. She finds it necessary to interrupt any conversation that touches on a book by talking about the book, as if that were the whole point.

    Ar any rate, the film Soylent Green was a loose adaptation of Harry Harrison’s Make Room, Make Room which was a cautionary tale about overpopulation. It was not particularly memorable, plausible, or well-written (that is, it was a typical Harrison book.) One of its plot points was that the vast, starving American population of 350 millions can’t afford meat, and so lives on ersatz made of soy and lentils, hence “soylent”. In the book, soylent green is vegetables.

    • I’m pleased to meet you, Letitia.

      I’m looking forward to a discussion on one of my most favorite of books, Deus Irae by the late greats Phillip K. Dick and Roger Zelazney.

      Sadly, this most amazing piece of fiction has yet to be republished.


      That’s worse. That’s so much worse.

      You know, I don’t know if I would want this guy’s home-brewed version, and I wouldn’t want to replace food entirely; but a pre-made 100% nutritionally-complete product to be used on occasion, as long as it’s not hideously-flavored or -expensive, doesn’t sound so bad. Plenty of times I am in a real rush and it could be useful.

      • a pre-made 100% nutritionally-complete product

        You mean, besides beer?

    • Because I am a nerd who was raised by a nerd (sorry, Dad!), I actually knew the name of the book on which “Soylent Green” was based. And that “soylent” does not merely refer to the “It’s PEOPLE!” product made famous by a frantic Charlton Heston. (That would be the specific “green” variety.) That said, the association in almost anyone’s mind when they heard the word “soylent” is “It’s PEOPLE!” and I still find it revolting.

      Oh, and how lovely to meet you, Letitia. How do you take your tea?

      [Edited: I just re-read Leticia’s comment. I thought there were lots of different “soylent” varieties, and that only the “green” variety of soylent was made from people. (I have a vague sense that it was the extra-tasty, “special treat” soylent.) Am I wrong about this?]

      • Letitia has to admit that she’s never seen the film. But in the book (which, once again, is all that matters), there were indeed different colors of soylent, but all of them were made from different combinations of vegetables.

          • Hollywood took a lousy book and made a not-quite-as-lousy film. Making soylent green be made from people was pretty much the whole of the improvement, since it added a reason to care (which the book wholly lacked).

            it would be nice if you were in San Francisco so we can meet in person
            I’m counting on Schilling and New Dealer to participate and offer us their reflections.

          • I will give it every bit the amount of time and attention I feel it deserves. Twice that much, even.

          • You know the big reveal at the end of Fight Club, without which the whole thing is kind of pointless? That wasn’t in that book either.

          • How did I not know Fight Club was a book?

            Is it worth my time?

          • I loooooooooathed “Fight Club.” It is one of a very few movies I’ve ever walked out of, and I learned the “big reveal” from someone else later on. It wasn’t nearly novel or fascinating enough to mitigate the intense hatred I feel for that film.

            Assuming I’d hate the book just as much, I cannot imagine how I’d feel if I got to the end and there wasn’t even the supposedly interesting “twist.”

          • I enjoyed Fight Club (the movie). But then I’m a fan of Big Ten basketball, too. (Mike will get that, even if the good doctor doesn’t.)

          • Mike,

            Did we read the same book? My “Fight Club” novel had the twist ending… unless you are talking about the VERY VERY end rather than the big reveal which was slightly before the penultimate scene.


            It was written by Chuck Palahniuk.

          • I admit to loving Fight Club.

            But when I was a kid, I was dragged to Adult Child Of An Alcoholic Group Therapy Sessions to listen to grownups talk about their (really, spectacularly crappy) childhoods.

            The first third of the movie hooked me.

          • I *loved* the film… still do… but I came to watch it during senior year of high school (on a VHS tape!) so I was right in the target demo for its angst. From there, I’ve read many of Palahniuk’s books, which I’ve enjoyed to varying degrees because I’m fished up like that.

          • I need an explanation for the rage.

            Is it that the movie exploited, for funsies, something that is downright solemn (and could indeed have poisoned future support groups)?

            You know, that might be enough. I can see that.

          • It wouldn’t shock me to learn that people might have tried to do in real life what the Narrator did in the book/movie, but I haven’t come across anything indicating such.

            Palahniuk’s books are all about commentary on human nature and/or society of one kind of another. It’s not necessarily the most insightful or thoughtful, sometimes amounting to little more than, “People are really F’ed up and capable of F’ed up shit but it’s usually in pursuit of some sort of human connection they’re lacking and the happiness that connecting offers.”

          • I was apparently mistaken. I’ve seen the film but not read the book. I thought I’d seen a piece by the author saying that the big reveal wasn’t in the book, but I must have misremembered. Never mind.

          • I will tread lightly, since I know lots and lots of people liked the movie, including many people (such as present company) of whom I am exceptionally fond. I did not find the end-of-life despair of cancer patients played for laughs to be to my taste.

            I found the movie not only incredibly cruel, but smug and self-congratulatory in its cruelty.

          • Kazzy,

            So I hope this means you like Big Ten basketball, too (and not that sissified ACC balletball)?

          • Mike,

            It’s been a while since I read the book, but a quick Wikipedia perusal reveals that gur Aneengbe naq Glyre ner bar va gur fnzr. I believe that how they go about the reveal is much more subtle and slow than the twist-style that the movie favored. And the very end of the movie is very different from the book.

            Was a Rot13 necessary there? How many years after a movie’s release must we no longer worry about spoilers?


            FWIW, I’ve seen the movie literally dozens of times, but never got the impression that we were supposed to laugh at the survivors. I mean, there was comedy to Meatloaf’s character, but I don’t think we were supposed to see their suffering as comical. If anything, I always took away that we were supposed to abhor Ed Norton and Helena Bonham-Carter’s character for exploiting their suffering for personal gain while also identifying with the lengths that people will go to find connection and comfort in the world. Regardless, the movie resonated with me, but I was of the time and place that Palahniuk writes for. And I’ve got no inner spinster. If it did not sit well with you, that is an understandable reaction and not something I will press you on.


            Personally, I prefer Big East basketball most of all. Or, at least, what Big East basketball once was. I don’t even know who is in what conference nowadays. But the ACC sucks… hard.

          • How many years after a movie’s release must we no longer worry about spoilers?

            I feel fine about saying that it was his sled.

          • That absolutely and totally makes sense.

            When I was a kid and dragged to the meetings I went to, I always felt exceptionally uncomfortable listening to adults weep about their childhoods and during these meetings, I always felt like a “tourist”.

            A scene in which someone was a tourist at one of those meetings resonated with me. Of course, the dynamic was *COMPLETELY* different (he went voluntarily, after all), but capturing that sensation was something that shocked me because I never expected there to be a name for that.

            I was hooked because I recognized something and learned that it had a name.

            Which, of course, is not a reason that anybody else should reach the same conclusion.

          • Kazzy — The specific moment I recall at which I said to myself “Oh, dear. I am going to really, really hate this movie” was the bit where a woman gets up and says something along the lines that she knows she’s going to die, has accepted it, etc but desperately wants to have sex again, before she is hustled away from the podium. If memory serves, the audience in the theater where I saw (most of) it erupted in laughter, which seemed to desired reaction.

            My opinion of the film did not improve from there.

          • Russ,

            That is indeed an interesting scene and it does not surprise me if it garnered a laugh in the theater but I never saw it in such a setting, much less ever really in a group… nearly every viewing I had was solo.

            For what it is worth, I saw that scene as humanizing the woman in an interesting way… yes, she was dying from cancer… but she was still a fully fledged woman, with needs… sexual needs… but she had been reduced to soliciting people as she did because who is going to sleep with a cancer-ridden woman on the verge of death? I took it as a commentary on how we view and treat the ill.

            But there are certainly numerous ways to respond to that scene and regardless of how the writer/director intended it, it doesn’t shock me that a group of young men, the target demo, would laugh at such a scene, and that such laughter would drastically color the viewing experience.

            We could go back and forth on the *right* interpretation of that scene and the movie as a whole or what the appropriate response should be or its artistic merit or entertainment value but… we are different men with different dispositions with different responses to a deliberately provocative work… and I’m okay with that being so. 🙂

          • James,

            I would be delighted to make the acquaintance of you and Johanna and watch you be flabergasted at the gentrification/hipsterfication of San Francisco. You said you left in 1992, the city has changed.

          • ND,
            We’ll be there for two days in late July, with a pretty rushed schedule. Lunch may be a possibility. The Pirate store is probably on our itinerary now.

          • Hmmmm, Russell. I do indeed seem to remember you getting up and walking out of that move.

          • I hope you know I STILL feel guilty about that, since:

            1) Going was MY IDEA, and

            2) You were on assignment and stuck watching the rest on your own.

            Maybe not my very best Best Friend moment?

  2. Feces probably has a lot of unused nutrients in it.
    And lots of fiber.
    But I’m not so sure I’d want to make a spaghetti sauce based on it.

    • I collect foraging books.

      One, Eat the Weeds by Ben Charles Harris, describes how his family lived foraging. He chopped up grass and mixed it in their food. This is what food-security experts call ‘alternative food.’

      And when I just checked, it’s got some praise as a ‘valuable resource on foraging.’

      I’d sooner take dieting advice from Michael Moore.

      Takes all kinds of dung to make the world go round.

      • I understand grass to be one of the things that humans can’t digest at all, thus offering us zero nutrients.

        • Really?
          Does it matter at all how much you chew it?
          Does this apply to all grasses, or only certain varieties?

          I need to know these things before I get started on my . . . ahem . . . (research)

          No stone left unturned. No bowel left unmoved.

          • Oh, you’ll poop, alright.

            As Mike alludes to below, you can probably get a bit out of it, but likely not worth the effort to acquire and break it down. Cows and other animals have some sort of enzyme or micro-organism that allows them to break it down but which we lack.

            Same thing with wood… we can’t do much of anything with that… termites do what they do because of some other organism that lives in their guts.

            Nature is weird.

        • Not quite true. If you chew it enough, you can get some of the juices out, and get some micronutrients, and perhaps a miniscule amount of sugar. Intestinal bacteria will also convert a small amount of the cellulose to short-chain fatty acids. I’m not sure that it’s really all that different from lettuce, which also has essentially no nutritive value. Probably a bit more fibrous, I guess.

          • Depends on the lettuce… iceberg lettuce is almost entirely water. Spinach, on the other hand, has quite a bit of nutrients one can derive from it.

            And, you’re right, that it is probably possible to derive something or other from it, but you won’t get calories out of it, not enough to offset what you expend gathering it and attempting to break it down.

            Also, it tastes terrible… trust me, I know…

          • Eating “grass” DOES taste terrible, but there are ways to get around that, either in your food preparation, or by consuming it in other ways…

            …sorry, what were we talking about again?

  3. This has *got* to be an elaborate prank. A food substitute called “Soylent”?
    Also, he wants people to try Soylent and then do blood work, etc. and send him the results? Um, IRB approval, anyone? The whole thing seems way too sketchy to be for real.

    Then again, sketchy “science” has a lot of takers. I recently got into a long discussion with someone who swears by Ray Kurzweil and who tried to tell me that epigenetics was the key to all life. Hilarity ensued when I told him I had actually worked in epigenetics research for a while and that word did not mean what he thinks it means. That’s an hour of my life I will never get back….

  4. I’m not sure its a hoax because I know (and have known) many people who ascribe to the “there’s a problem with food” philosophy.

    Take that nice bit of stew beef you can by at the grocery. How much energy does that meat give you once cooked? The amount of energy required to produce that meat and deliver it to you is a much, much larger number. We have a food “system” that allows some nations to become obese through over-consumption (amongst many other factors) and others to starve (even in our own nation) and some of it has to do with the fact that money and energy required to make and distribute the food is being used to make and distribute far less efficient products.

    I’m not saying we should all go on an all liquid diet or that this guy is a medical genius, but I don’t think he’s totally wrong about what’s not right in the world regarding food.

    • I’m not sure its a hoax because I know (and have known) many people who ascribe to the “there’s a problem with food” philosophy.

      It is a hoax designed to fool PRECISELY those “many people.”

      • Are you saying they’re wrong to point out that there is a problem with a planet that has people dying of obesity and people dying of starvation at the same time?

        I might not agree with the extent they want to go to help fix it, but I’m very very hesitant to condem them as fools given the fact that, well… They’re Right.

        Meat is a very expensive product to produce relative to the energy it provides when it is consumed. If you want effiecent, then you actually ~are~ better off with a soy block with some flavor and vitamins added. It’s just… well.. math.

        Look at the energy to produce a pound of meat and then the energy that pound of meat produces. It’s not rocket science. And so I have some sympathy for someone who ways “look, this is wasteful. We grow all this corn, we give it to cows, and then we harvest their meat. We burn a lot of energy doing all this too between tractors, fertilizer, and transport. Can’t we be better?”

        I might not be willing to go on an all Tofu diet, but…. I’m not going to laugh at those who do for those reasons.

        • No. Kindly re-read my sentence. Mr. Rhinehart has come up with “Soylent” as a performance piece (hoax) to fool the gullible members of the “there’s a problem with food” community. Mr. Rhinehart is the one laughing, or at least seeing how far he can go with this.

          For my part I agree that there is a huge problem with the Western model of industrial agriculture, but that does not oblige me to accept Mr. Rhinehart’s account as the truth.

          • I dunno, man. If it is an elaborate hoax, the guy’s really done his homework. He either really got blood tests done himself or knows how to fake a lab report with eerie accuracy, and (while I have zero interest in ingesting it myself) his ingredient list seems reasonably well-crafted for a home-made liquid diet.

            But hey, it could all be a ruse! In which case, strong work Mr. Rhinehart.

          • Based on the series of posts he has written I believe it is an elaborate performance piece/hoax. I do not think he is trying to profit from anyone; I get the vibe of “how far can I take this before the reveal?”

            As someone who has a man dressed like a medical professional for an avatar, I had hoped you would be able to see through this.

          • I see where you’re at. There is a problem but this guy isn’t about fixing it; he’s just a loon.

          • He might be a loon but it’s secondary to what he is doing here: executing a performance piece with complete self-awareness.

          • Well, since I don’t really dress like your stereotypical doctor in real life, I decided my Gravatar would have to do.

            So convince me that it IS a hoax. What reveals it? What makes it sufficiently obvious that I should have seen it? It is that merely your very strong hunch after reading the posts?

          • In no particular order, and by no means comprehensive (sorry, pressed for time):

            For whatever reason, the loudest initial alarm was “As any Instagram user knows, food is a big part of life.”

            His running improves to 3.14 miles and he notes “That’s an irrational improvement.” Come on.

            Finally, SOYLENT. COME ON!

            The whole thing is so over the top it’s gone right back around to subtle.

            The discussion thread at LGM has more by me and others.

          • I’ll have to take your word for it about Instagram, since I know almost nothing about it. I assumed that meant “people who keep track of whatever it is I put up on Instagram will have noticed a lot of food-related content.” Can someone tell me what’s so obviously crazy about this?

            Is the change in distance he could run suspicious, or his description of it? Because I’m really not all that impressed by being able to go from one to a little over three miles. That’s not that big a jump.

            Frankly, the only thing that strikes me as particularly suspicious was the use of “Soylent.” Everything else seems totally preposterous, but not particularly indicative of dissembling.

          • His running improves to 3.14 miles and he notes “That’s an irrational improvement.” Come on.

            Should have been a “transcendent” improvement.

          • The Instagram reference made me think of hipsters incessantly photographing their food. YMMV.

            3.14 is the rough value of pi, which is an irrational as well as (thanks Mike Schilling!) a transcendental number. I freeley admit to forgetting the first (irrational) and never knowing the second until now (transcendental).

            Finally, there is no dissembling involved; he’s just straight-up BS-ing.

          • I will admit I completely (and embarrassingly) missed the pi reference. But to me that seems more an amusing way of describing what he may have actually done than a super-subtle wink that it’s all an elaborate fake-out. But, as you say, YMMV.

            Maybe it’s because I’ve had too many patients who have really done this kind of crack-pot thing, if not this specific one? It seems all too plausible to me.

          • I think you’re on to something with the plausibility thing. It’s superficially plausible but subtly tweaked. It also helps that so many people apparently WANT to believe something like this.

            For the record, I missed the pi reference on the first go-round myself.

  5. Up until a year ago I couldn’t care less about food. I probably wouldn’t have ever gone as far as replacing it with some less than desirable beverage, but I did not get any joy out of preparing or consuming it. Now I am beginning to learn to cook and use food as a vehicle to conversation, entertainment, education, culture, and so much more. Perhaps this gentleman could benefit from a cooking class so that he may better appreciate the value of food.

    • I would miss chewing. When I make a concentrated effort on eating less and being more active I find that I miss chewing. Gum helps. Can you have gum on this “diet”? Not that I’d try it anyway, just curious.

      • We learned in bio psychology that chewing is important to satiety. A person on a completely liquid diet is likely to have trouble feeling full, possibly resulting in taking in too many calories.

  6. You know, admitting that “food is the fossil fuel of blahblah” is essentially an admission that it’s actually the most efficient mechanism for transporting/carrying calories, etc.

    The reason we don’t get out of using fossil fuels isn’t because it’s just inertia. It’s also because it’s damned convenient and energy dense compared to the alternatives. God I hate this fucking pseudo-science bullshit.

  7. I. Love. Food. That lack of love for it is incomprehensible to me, frankly. As curious as a total lack of interest in any television or sex.

    Anyhow, something interesting. My son subsists on a pre-fab liquid diet. I’m trying to figure out how to blenderize and tube feed him real food so I can stop cramming chemical calculations of nutrients in him.

    • This is food.

      Also, he stated that he has not been on a strictly solid-free diet, and has said nothing adverse about eating out socially.

      • It’s “food” in only its most reductive, physiologic sense. It is not food in the way almost everyone means it when they say it.

  8. I get really upset about this kimd of thing.

    It’s a scam aimed at OCPD people or anyone who is prone to feel overwhelming frelings of being grossed out by anything bodily or organic, which is a fairly common problem. Some people have overwhelming fear of poop being built up in their intestines (and there are scams for that) or strong, irrational aversions to food or their bodies.

    The key difference between the product he is offering and something like Ensure, is that he wants to say his product isn’t organic food or a mixture of food products, but is rather some chemical concoction that isn’t at all organic. (I’ll bet this is false, and it has lots of sugar and starch and maybe even some ground dried veggies, fish oil, all of which are food and not chemicals, mined from somewhere and cooked together. Actually it is probablu just starch and sugar with a multivitamin in it.) This is precisely why some poor souls will want his product, because they will think it is cleaner, less gross, and less organic than a carrot or a pizza or even Ensure, which is marketed as liquid food.

    Hopefully he’ll get busted for selling this without labelling it at some point.

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