Question of the Week Podcast

Question of the Week episode

Tue, 20th Nov 2012

How long could one survive on self cannibalisation?

A plate of cooked pork chops. (c) Stu Spivack - http://flickr.com/photos/stuart_spivack/34677132/

This week we find out how long you could survive by just eating your own severed limbs, plus we search for synchrony in menstrual cycles. 

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  • How long could one survive eating yourself?

    I suppose the question could be posed relative to any higher animal . My unvarnished question and maybe more palatable as "thought experiment" I recall in past that humans can last about one month with no food. If one sets aside medical complications , how long could a ...

 

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I have read hunger strikers can live 50-70 days sometimes longer, so if you started self cannibalisation after this time, then only eat your limbs which would feed you for another 30-40 days, then perhaps last another 30 days after this as your body breaks down your internal organs.
This is based on a typical englishman, i suppose you could double this figure on a typical american ;D sunshaker, Fri, 23rd Nov 2012

In a sense, with starvation, your body begins to reabsorb the nutrients stored in the tissues.  So, with a month of starvation, one would look quite emaciated.  And, at that time, there would be very little meat left on the bones.  Perhaps only enough left for a little stew. 

Anyway, rather than whacking off body parts, it might be best to just let the body reabsorb the nutrients it actually requires, perhaps only making some cannibal stew as one approaches "the end". CliffordK, Sat, 24th Nov 2012

I know which bit I'd start on. It doesn't get a whole lot of use these days anyway.

I keep getting spam emails for viagra. 'Puts lead in your pencil.' they say. Not a whole lot of good when you've got nobody to write to. Don_1, Sat, 8th Dec 2012

THIS IS NOT CORRECT. YOU HAVE NOT ACCOUNTED FOR BONES AND OTHER INDIGESTIBLE TISSUE Donnie, Wed, 16th Apr 2014

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