How Long Can a Human Survive With No Food?

Food is one of the least important items in a survival situation. A person needs food to survive, but he can last far longer without food than he can without water. The Boy Scout Wilderness Survival Merit Badge handbook lists food as the fifth of seven priorities when a person finds himself in a survival situation.

Starvation Survival Time

The average person can last 4 to 6 weeks without consuming any food.

How Long can a Person Last Without Water?

Three days is the maximum a person can live without water. Two days is the average amount of time a person will live before dying of thirst.

The Role of Body Weight in Starvation

Overweight people can live longer without food. The body consumes fat reserves first during lean times. In essence, the body is using its own fat tissue as a food source.

Additional Physical Factors

How hydrated a person is to begin with before they start the fast, how old they are and his or her general health influences how long a person can survive before succumbing to starvation.

Psychological Factors

Whether or not a person suffering from starvation is in good mental health also affects how long they can live without food.