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Ambronite - healthy alternative to Soylent?
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Rex Sanders
(Rex) - M

Locale: Central California Coast
Ambronite - healthy alternative to Soylent? on 05/05/2014 21:44:06 MDT Print View

Ambronite is "the world's first Organic Drinkable Supermeal". Currently raising funds through Indiegogo.

Early review on ArsTechnica:
While Soylent tastes like a vaguely sweet yeasty bread-drink, Ambronite tastes like raw, unsalted almonds. It's definitely a less neutral taste than Soylent; it’s much more like totally unsweetened almond milk, though the nut-taste is less pronounced than almond milk.

Don't stock up for the zombie apocalypse: Ambronite appears to have a viable shelf life of about two months.

And Wired UK:
... it doesn't look overly appetising but the nuttiness comes through in both the taste and texture and the thickness makes it feel more substantial than a normal drink. I wasn't particularly hungry when I tried my sample, but didn't feel the need to eat for some time afterwards.

Sold in 500 calorie pouches, about $8 each, "approx. 4 oz / 119g"

Might be worth it for certain no-cook meals.

-- Rex

Edited by Rex on 05/05/2014 21:56:33 MDT.

David Thomas
(DavidinKenai) - MLife

Locale: North Woods. Far North.
Re: Ambronite - healthy alternative to Soylent? on 05/05/2014 22:44:05 MDT Print View

Compare to peanut butter: 4 ounces is $0.60 and contain 666 calories. Mine seems to last on the shelf for many months.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: Ambronite - healthy alternative to Soylent? on 05/06/2014 05:40:58 MDT Print View

"Compare to peanut butter: 4 ounces is $0.60 and contain 666 calories. Mine seems to last on the shelf for many months."

Sure, but you don't really want to eat peanut butter on its own. You need to add bacon....

David Drake
(DavidDrake) - F

Locale: North Idaho
Re: Ambronite - healthy alternative to Soylent? on 05/06/2014 09:52:44 MDT Print View

Or you could just eat almonds and drink some water...

Just In Time
(ArcturusBear1) - F
Re: Ambronite - healthy alternative to Soylent? on 05/06/2014 14:52:24 MDT Print View

There is also Garden of Life Raw Meal, which you can get for around 35 dollars for around 2.5 to 2.7 lbs. That other stuff would cost around 80 dollars for equivalent amount...

If I ever have an opportunity to do a late winter/early spring brooks range trek, my main food would be raw meal mixed in with coconut oil or ghee.

Valerie E
(Wildtowner) - M

Locale: Grand Canyon State
Garden of Life Raw Meal on 05/06/2014 15:35:13 MDT Print View

Hey Justin, What is the taste/texture like on the Garden of Life Raw Meal? It sounds like it might make a helluva breakfast smoothie on the trail...

Just In Time
(ArcturusBear1) - F
Re: Garden of Life Raw Meal on 05/06/2014 15:56:36 MDT Print View

I've only tried the vanilla flavor so far. I don't mind it but I have a high tolerance for odd or different tasting foods. Texture is slightly gritty, but not highly so. If you want, I can mail you a scoop or two of the vanilla for free.

Valerie E
(Wildtowner) - M

Locale: Grand Canyon State
Re: Garden of Life Raw Meal on 05/06/2014 16:25:31 MDT Print View

Thank you -- VERY kind offer, but don't worry about it. I haven't decided whether to attempt the whole trail smoothie thing yet...I am extremely finicky in the mornings, and I thought a healthy smoothie might get me nutrition, on-the-go (while hiking) without causing nausea (which eating "real" food does for me first thing in the a.m)...

I may just get the "mini" size to try it out at home, and I was eyeing the vanilla anyway!

Paul Ashton
(PDA123) - F

Locale: Eastern Mass
lower cost alternative on 06/15/2014 11:57:59 MDT Print View

+1 tp Dave Thomas. If you must have a a smoothy type breakfast (or other meal) use carnation Breakfast Essentials. Just as good (or bad - depending on your point of view) but no where near as expensive ( nowhere near as hipster of course)

Gary Dunckel
(Zia-Grill-Guy) - MLife

Locale: Boulder
re: lower cost alternatives on 06/15/2014 13:47:18 MDT Print View

I've actually been checking out the various powdered nutrition options around here. I figured that there must be cheaper alternatives to the Packit Gourmet Jump Start smoothies. Here's what I've found, with calorie percentages of fat, carbs, and protein, as well as the total calories per ounce of powder:

Packit Gourmet Jump Starts:
27% from fat, 40% from carbs, 33% from protein; 113 cal/oz.

32% fat, 53% carbs, 15% protein; 127 cal/oz.

NutriBiotic ProZone, from Vitamin Cottage:
29% fat, 41% carbs, 30% protein; 124 cal/oz.

Walgreen's Shake Mix (about to be discontinued, highly discounted right now):
22% fat, 64% carbs, 14% protein; 118 cal/oz.

Carnation Essentials AND Kellogg's TO GO (identical percentages):
ZERO fat, 84% carbs, 16% protein; 101 cal/oz.

So I'm thinking that I'll go with Ensure and ProZone, due to the caloric balance, cal/oz., and cost, and forget the Jump Starts (high cost) and the no-fat Kellogg's and Carnation powder (cheap, but low cal/oz.). The Walgreen's powder is a real buy right now, but my local stores have sold all the vanilla, and all that's left left is chocolate (a little of that goes a long way for me).

The other thing about the Jump Start smoothies is that I would need to repackage them, to make 3-ounce/ ~375 cal. portions. I can add my own fruit to the vanilla flavor, but peaches and chocolate doesn't sound quite right.

I'd like to know what the best caloric ratio from fats/carbs/protein is while hiking. The standard Government DAILY recommendation is 27% fat, 52% carbs, and 21% protein. So if one will load up on protein at dinner, he/she could focus on fats and carbs during the day. That makes Ensure seem like a pretty good breakfast choice. Jump Starts and ProZone provide more protein, at the expense of fats.

It's interesting to me that Hammer Perpetuem has a ratio of 8% fats, 81% carbs (with a scant 13% of those in the form of simple sugars), and 11% protein. This is intended to be a solid hiking fuel mixture, at 109 cal/oz.

One last offering: ProBar Meal bars contain 48% fat, 42% carbs, and 10% protein. You get 410 calories per 3-oz. bar, yielding a whopping 137 cal/oz!

I don't pretend to know much about nutrition, or the best ways to spread our calories out through the day. I will be watching this thread to see what pearls y'all will offer.


Edited by Zia-Grill-Guy on 06/15/2014 13:49:52 MDT.

Joey P

Locale: New York
Soylent vs Ambronite on 06/19/2014 08:21:53 MDT Print View

Has anyone here actually tried either Soylent or Ambronite? I think they are great ideas for when cooking isn't an option or you don't have the time/energy. Very curious to hear about anyone hear's experience with them.

There was a funny review of soylent in the New York Times where they didn't like the flavor, but for camping I can't see that being as much of an issue if it is healthy and at least reasonable palatable.

Heather Hohnholz
(Hawke) - M
Soylent on 06/19/2014 12:13:50 MDT Print View

I have both made Soylent at home according to my own specs, and I am currently using the commercial Soylent made available to the Kickstarter backers.

One bag of Soylent + 1 bottle of the oil mix is equal to one day's meals=2000 calories. The shipped cost of one bag is $9. One bag weighs approx 440g/15.5oz. I can't remember off the top of my head how much the oil weighs, it's about 4oz or so. So let's say 20 oz/day. That comes out to 100 cals/oz, and $.45/oz. What you get for that is a nutritionally complete (according to FDA standards) food source (I know, I know, all the debate about there's stuff we can't quantify from whole floods, blah blah blah). I don't know of anywhere else you can get nutritionally complete food for an entire day at $.45/oz.

As to it somehow being unhealthy, I'm not sure where that assertion comes from. That assumes that just because something is "natural" or "whole," it's healthy. Cyanide is natural too. Want to eat an ounce?

My experience: I've used it, and I do well on it. The flavor is very neutral, a little bit sweet and vaguely....Oat? tasting. It feels filling, and gives me good, steady energy. I generally only use it two meals a day, and eat "real food" the third meal. There have been no unusual changes to my urination/defecation habits/size/consistency. I have not exclusively used Soylent in a backpacking-type scenario.

I think it's absolutely a viable alternative (both nutritionally and monetarily) to food in general, and may end up being very attractive to hikers for its simplicity and cost efficiency. The only issue I can see is that for thru-hiking, you're going to need a lot more calories daily than that, so at some point, you may have diminishing returns if you try to use Soylent as your only fuel source.

All this being said, Soylent is a very polarized topic, and there are a number of unknown factors associated with it. It, like everything else in this community, is a HYOH item.