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Thread: Effects on the body in starvation

  1. #1 Effects on the body in starvation 
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    I would like to know the effects of starvation on the body - specifically the brain.


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  3. #2  
    Forum Junior JennLonhon's Avatar
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    Personally, when I am hungry, I am very nervous and not a good person to mess with =))


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  4. #3  
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    The brain cannot afford to change it's activity significantly, because its far too delecate. Your brain behaves the same during starvation, mostly (obviously you get slightly fatigued), as during a fed state.

    The main differences is what energy source the brain utilizes, during the fed state the brain relies on glucose but as this is unavailable during a starved state the brain instead metabolizes 'ketone bodies', which are synthesised by your body in responsed to low glucose supplies. I recomend you read up about ketone bodies and their synthesis if you are interested in this subject, as the real difference between starved and fed states is here, the sourcing of metabolites rather than the catabolizing of them.
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  5. #4  
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    I'm not sure, but you may be able to observe the same in athletes. The press tries to interview a runner immediately after a race, the runner just kinda talks zombie-like. I've actually heard one plead, "Not now. My brain is oxygen deprived," but I think it must be low glucose not oxygen.
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  6. #5  
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    Some of your questions may be answered here.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minneso...riment#Results
    The full report of results from the Minnesota Starvation Experiment was published in 1950 in a two-volume, 1,385 page text entitled The Biology of Human Starvation (University of Minneapolis Press). The fifty chapters of this treatise contain an extensive analysis of the physiological and psychological data collected during the study together with a comprehensive literature review.
    Among the many conclusions from the study was the confirmation that prolonged semi-starvation produces significant increases in depression, hysteria and hypochondriasis as measured using the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI), a standardized test administered during the experimental period. Indeed, most of the subjects experienced periods of severe emotional distress and depression. There were extreme reactions to the psychological effects during the experiment including self-mutilation (one subject amputated three fingers of his hand with an axe, though the subject was unsure if he had done so intentionally or accidentally).[1] Participants exhibited a preoccupation with food, both during the starvation period and the rehabilitation phase. Sexual interest was drastically reduced and the volunteers showed signs of social withdrawal and isolation. The participants reported a decline in concentration, comprehension and judgment capabilities, although the standardized tests administered showed no actual signs of diminished capacity. There were marked declines in physiological processes indicative of decreases in each subjectís basal metabolic rate (the energy required by the body in a state of rest) and reflected in reduced body temperature, respiration and heart rate. Some of the subjects exhibited edema (swelling) in the extremities, presumably due to the massive quantities of water the participants consumed attempting to fill their stomachs during the starvation period.
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  7. #6  
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    In buddhist belief, the wealthy prince disappeared into the forest under the bodi tree and starved his body because he though that food and wealth were means of bad will. He realised when he could feel his own spine through his abdomen that this was not a good idea. This just goes to show that for years it has been known that starving the body of nutrients leads the muscle atrophy and degradation of fatty tissue, other than the physical problems siddhatha gotama encountered, he also said how his mind was clouded.

    Without carbohydrates from food for fuel, the body metabolises glycogen into glucose, when glycogen stored are depleted, the breaking down of fatty acids, tissues/muslces for energy to supply the brain. So to address your initial question, you body will do anything to supply the brain with glucose, it will even break down its own tissues for fuel.
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  8. #7  
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    When i am hungry , I cannot do anything with my brain, the only thing coming to my mind is food. There is few glucose storage for the brain . As long as I can see, my situation is just common.
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