Last Updated on June 12, 2023 by Umar
The idea of eating one’s own feces, also known as coprophagia, is a controversial and taboo subject.
However, in extreme survival situations, people may wonder if it’s possible to consume their own waste as a last resort.
This comprehensive blog post aims to explore the potential risks, benefits, and consequences of eating human feces for survival.
Nutritional Value of Human Feces
Human feces consist of around 75% water and 25% solid matter, which includes bacterial biomass, undigested plant matter, protein, and fat
Although feces contain some nutrients, they are considered waste products that the body cannot use
Therefore, the nutritional value of human feces is minimal.
Health Risks of Eating Feces
Eating human feces carries significant health risks due to the presence of harmful bacteria, viruses, and parasites
Ingesting feces can lead to infections such as Cryptosporidium and Giardia, which cause gastrointestinal symptoms like diarrhea, abdominal pain, and cramping
Consuming feces can also expose a person to bacteria like Campylobacter, E.
coli, Salmonella, and Shigella, which can cause nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, and fever.
Potential Benefits of Eating Feces
In theory, ingesting “clean” feces could provide a second chance to absorb undigested food and metabolize non-digested nutrients
However, the potential benefits are outweighed by the significant health risks associated with consuming feces.
Coprophagia in Animals
Some animals, such as pikas, have been found to consume feces as a survival strategy
For example, pikas living in the Tibetan Plateau have been observed eating yak feces to supplement their diets with undigested nutrients during the harsh winter months
However, it is important to note that the digestive systems and dietary needs of animals differ significantly from those of humans.
Alternatives to Eating Feces for Survival
In a survival situation, it is crucial to prioritize finding safe and nutritious food sources rather than resorting to eating feces.
Consuming feces poses significant health risks and offers minimal nutritional benefits.
Instead, focus on locating edible plants, insects, and small animals to sustain yourself during a survival scenario.
Eating human feces for survival is not recommended due to the significant health risks and minimal nutritional value it provides.
In extreme situations, it is essential to prioritize finding safe and nutritious food sources to maintain health and increase the chances of survival.