You must have fantasized adventures like going on a long journey of the life-taking Sahara desert; or thought of walking in a dense forest with a little supply of food that would end within days and make you look for some grasshoppers or other such stuff. If you don’t want to die of starvation, then you must explore the answer to how long can a human live without water and food, before heading for such life-threatening adventures.
So, let’s have a look at how long a human being is capable of sustaining life without eating and drinking much.
Post-Starvation Prospects for Life
So can the human Live without water and food? And the answer is yes but not longer.
An analysis of the available information on the subject of starvation and its link with human life, reveals that survival without food and water varies from person to person and depends upon the following factors.
- Health condition of person
- Level of fat accumulation in the body
- Speed of metabolism that also varies from person to person
- Scale of the physical activity
- Genders (in few cases)
- Environmental conditions
From all the factors mentioned above health condition of a person, metabolism and environmental conditions matter a lot. For example, an athlete who does an extensive workout or runs fast for hours in scorching heat is also likely to die of dehydration within hours. In the same manner, a person who is not available with water is expected to survive for four days or up to a week, if the conditions are cold.
How Long Can a Human Live Without Water and Food?
A human can live without food longer than without water; this is because dehydration makes it difficult for human body systems to work correctly. There are many ways for the body to obtain the nutrition that comes from food. It can utilize the accumulated fats or start dissolving the muscles protein, for fulfilling its energy requirements. For water the case is different; its deficiency can lead to complications like a malfunction of kidneys, which is already one of the leading causes of death in America.
Briefly, a person who is surrounded by moderate and less-hot weather conditions can survive without water for up to one week at most.
Surviving Without Food
It is not possible to give an exact time duration that can make a human live without food. But, studies on hunger strikes show that people lived without food for up to 20-40 days. In case of human survival without food researchers often give the example of Mahatma Gandhi who starved himself for 21 days.
There is a reason why dieticians stress upon eating the food that speeds up metabolism; this is because an increased metabolism makes it easy to lose the weight quicker. Hence, people who have high metabolism are likely to die earlier of starvation. Women, old age people and those who are not physically active can survive hunger for a more extended period, as they don’t need too much energy.