So what happens to your body after about three weeks without food? Spoilers! Slow and miserable death! But is your best bet really bags of beans and rice?
You hear it all the time… “You can live 3 days without water, and 3 weeks without food”. Well, let me tell you a little secret….
Those three weeks without food are hell! And even if you’re rescued near the end of those three weeks the damage done can be permanent.
Sure, we can all spare a few days, and most will be fine after a week without food, but after that it’s a different story.
Your body starts to change, organs start doing funky things, and your heart and brain can suffer.
Oddly enough your body begins damaging itself in a desperate attempt to stay alive.
Three Weeks Of Hell
Not only are you going to feel like warmed over roadkill because of caffeine and sugar crashes, but your brain quickly stops working at peak efficiency, so decisions and critical thinking go completely down the tube after only a few days.
Your brain must have glucose to function. When the glucose levels in your blood get too low, your body starts making it own by cannibalizing your own heart muscles to use to protein to create glucose, which can have dramatic lifelong effects.
By the way, this actually happens in various muscles throughout your body, but for some reason your heart is one of the first places your brain chooses to break down for the protein it needs.
How much sense does that make? Come on.
At the same time, your intestines begin their slow shut down as you rob most of the muscles around them too, many of which can take years to rebuild and may require surgery with a pretty horrific recovery, debilitating lifelong pain, and permanent constipation.
That’s just around about week two. On week three your organs start to go into “limbo mode” to save energy for your brain, and many will never recover. Liver, kidneys, spleen, gall bladder….
Speaking of gall bladder, prepare to have it removed after weeks without food. It’s a finicky organ and many times a prolonged period of sitting idle is enough make it fail weeks later, or at least build up so many gall stones you need surgery.
In fact, not eating for weeks can trigger a myriad of other health problems. Some of the most common are heart attacks, liver cancer, pancreatic cancer, kidney stones, those previously mentioned gall bladder issues, a slew of intestinal problems, a generally higher risks of cancer, a much higher risk of dementia, and more…..
Sure, you can live three weeks without food, but after week one you’re looking at some life changing after effects.
“…I’ll Just Grab Some Cans When They’re On Sale…”
Food is the largest single investment and the underlying staple behind every proper disaster prep, but most preppers concentrate on gear, a little water, and just kinda hope to wing the food they need with a box or two extra at the grocery store every now and then, or the age old killer: “I’ll just hunt for what I need”. Good luck!
And some preppers buy food they wouldn’t normally eat because it’s on sale or they think it’ll store easy. These are the ones that don’t rotate their stockpile (because they’ll never eat that can of sardines in mushroom sauce), so they waste space and money storing food they hate. They look at their pile every few months and figure they’ll have enough. Good luck!
These preppers rarely think about caloric intake, nutritional needs, flavor monotony, or insulin loads….sorry white rice hoarders, diabetes will get you if the rioters don’t!
If you don’t have enough food, or the right kind of food, you are putting yourself at immediate risk. If you’re not properly stockpiled with basic food supplies, you will not last very long in a true prepper situation.
Prepping is about being ready NOW, so make sure you’re not winging your biggest and most important prep. We highly recommend prepackaged long term food storage for it’s savings in your closet space and your wallet over grabbing some stuff here and there or hoping to hunt and grow what you need.
Make sure you food stockpile is reliable, foolproof, and available NOW.