He Lived 70 Years Without Food or Water?

(Sam Panthaky / Getty Images)

Okay, first, I have to admit that I don’t necessarily believe that this 82 year old man has lived for the last 70 years without eating any food or drinking any water (as you are about to find out is his claim). However… that said… I still think that there’s a rather interesting story here. Why? Although it may be physically impossible to survive for 70 years without food and water, it is also deemed rather impossible, if not simply highly improbable, that a man could survive a full two weeks without food or water… at least not without water, and also at least without some rather adverse affects on his body.

But that is just what this man did.

Here’s the background: Yogi Prahlad Jani claimed that for the last 70 years, he has not consumed any food or water, claiming that he has been nourished by a goddess who pours nectar on his tongue in his sleep.  Ahem.  Umm… okay… sure.  If you say so.  And this type of roll-your-eyes-feigned-belief was the reaction of India’s equivalent of the US National Institutes of Health, who basically (although also cordially) called B.S. on Mr. Jani, politely inviting him to “be studied” at a hospital under surveillance of a number of the country’s most esteemed physicians.

But here’s where it gets interesting:  Much to everyone’s surprise, Prahlad Yani accepted, and showed up for the study.

And if his just showing up weren’t interesting enough, here are the particulars of what they found:  For 15 days, in the controlled environment of a hospital, under 24 hour surveillance through three separate video cameras, yogi Prahlad Yani underwent multiple batteries of tests, both medical and psychological, all the while not eating or drinking for the entire 15 day period.

Now normally, humans can survive weeks without food.  No biggie.  But not having water is a different game altogether.  Not taking in water is a seriously life threatening situation.  In fact, survivability without water (in optimal 70 degree temperatures) for a human body maxes out right at 10 days, with the average time being about 7 days for the critical organs to start the process of shutting down due to dehydration.  (And this is if you’re doing nothing but lying in the shade.)  After that process starts, typically death occurs rather quickly.

But after 15 days of medical investigation, India’s Defense Institute of Physiology and Allied Sciences concluded that not only did 82-year-old yogi Prahlad Jani not consume any food or water, his body also did not exhibit any adverse affects from his non-consumption.

“Clinical, biochemical, radiological, and other relevant examinations were done on Prahlad Jani and all reports were within the safe range throughout the study. He is healthy; his mind is sharp,” said researcher Dr. G. Ilavazhagn according to the Daily Mail. “What is truly astonishing, and something we have no explanation for, is that he has not passed stools or urine. To my knowledge, that is medically unprecedented.”

Noting that he did not urinate or defecate for the entire two weeks is substantial, because it deflates any theories that he hyper-hydrated or hyper-nourished before showing up for the study.  Also worthy of note is the fact that he was observed by 35 of India’s top medical researchers, not just some small group of potentially conspiring headline seekers.

Doctors have not found any adverse effects in his body from hunger or dehydration. They think that yoga exercises may have caused Jani’s body to undergo a biological transformation. The researchers said tests found that his brain is equivalent to that of a 25-year-old.

In fact the doctors said that after fasting for two weeks, Jani was healthier than the average 40-year-old.

When a person fasts, there are usually changes in metabolism, but that was not observed in Jani.

Okay, so… although this Indian yogi may have not lived for an entire 70 years without food or water (or maybe he did?)… he did at least however seem to get it done for over two weeks, well past death’s normal deadline of no-water-consumption, all while under a close medical observation that was reporting he was healthier than a man less than half his age.

Hmmm…

So for me… this begs a question; “If he survived 15 days without nourishment, seemingly without any detrimental effect, exactly how long could Mr. Jani potentially survive without food and water?”  And a good follow up question could be, “If the answer to the first question is not 70 years, where would the line be drawn between 15 days and 70 years? 30 days?  6 months?”  And regardless of the fact that the potential answer might not be close to 70 years, isn’t it cool that whatever the answer is, it’s well beyond what science says is the maximum survival for a human body that’s not getting any water?   And then comes some additional questions:  Is he an anomaly, or is it possible for other humans to foster a mind / body connection that can influence the body’s “normal” operation so as to create dramatically higher levels of health?  And is there a connection between his particular practice of yoga and the ability to create amazing efficiencies of health within the human body?

Hmmm…

Interesting stuff, don’t you think?  What’s your opinion?  You buy it?

Peace,

 

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