Russia Alexei Navalnyi has been on a hunger strike for 21 days – this is how non-eating affects a person

Eating does affect everyone individually, but after a few weeks, problems begin to appear at the standard of living.

In Russia opposition leader Alexei Navalnyi has been on hunger strike today, Wednesday 21 days, or three weeks.

Navalnyi went on a hunger strike because he did not feel he was getting the treatment he needed in prison. Navalnyi has previously been imprisoned as well as a victim of incitement such as torture.

Over the weekend, doctors warned Navalny’s condition was so serious that he can die at any moment I can. Of particular concern are Navalny’s excessively high potassium levels, which threaten the condition of his heart.

How long can a person not eat?

It can be assessed based on how long different energy stores last, says a leading nutritionist Mikko Rinta From the Health House.

Fat stores last about 48-61 days, depending on the person and the underlying diseases, while protein stores last about 60-65 days.

The chest emphasizes that the effects of not eating are very individual and depend on, for example, a person’s initial condition. He speaks on a more general level, and does not take a direct position on the situation in Navalny.

Benchmark however, one can search history. An hunger strike is a means of resistance and pressure to get attention to a chosen issue.

Perhaps one of the best-known hunger strikers is the father of nonviolent resistance Mahatma Gandhi, who fasted several times to oppose the British regime in India. At its longest, he had not eaten for just 21 days.

Another example can be found in 1980s Ireland, where supporters of the Republic of Ireland in prison were on hunger strike against the British regime. In the 1981 hunger strike, ten prisoners starved to death, most notably the 27-year-old who started the strike Bobby Sands, who died after 66 days of fasting.

The prisoners had not eaten for the longest time Kieran Doherty, which starved after 73 days.

A young girl carries a picture of Bobby Sands on the 20th anniversary of the hunger strike in 2001.­

Euronews media for its part, it says that the longest fasting was also a supporter of the Republic of Ireland in the 1920s, which withered after 94 days. He did, however, drink sugar water during his strike.

When stop eating, during the first few days the weight starts to drop quickly, up to a couple of kilograms a day.

Within a few days of stopping eating, the body begins to adjust to the situation and moves to ketosis, which, among other things, it seeks to conserve protein.

“The body uses its energy stores, primarily mainly fat and carbohydrate stores. After that, the use of protein increases, ie tissues and muscles are used to satisfy energy needs, ”says nutritionist Rinta.

In about 3 to 4 weeks, the body has consumed 30 to 40 percent of its protein, making the situation severe. After several weeks of not eating, problems begin to appear at the standard of living.

“Myocardium shrinks and kidney and lung function weakens, which affects the ability to cough, for example. In addition, the susceptibility to various infections increases, wound healing slows down, the ability to regulate heat decreases and brain function deteriorates, ”Rinta lists.

On a spiritual level, anxiety and depression, among other things, raise their heads.

“One could assume that when he arrived in Russia, Navalnyi was in relatively good shape, but since then his situation has not been optimal. For example, poor sleep weakens the starting situation. ”

On the other hand, Navalny’s starting situation was aggravated by the fact that in August 2020 he was tried to be poisoned with the novitok neurotoxin. Studies by the Bellingcat supplier network, among others, have shown that the company was most obviously based on the Russian intelligence services, ie the Russian administration.

The choice of poison also points in the same direction. Navalnyi survived narrowly due to a quick stopover and later treatment he received in Germany.

He was arrested as soon as he returned to Russia. He was jailed for violating parole in a show trial.

Internationally The most unfortunate situation has been received with concern.

Over the weekend, the United States and the European Union raised concerns about the health of the opposition leader. On Monday, the President of the Republic Sauli Niinistö said he had raised the topic in his last week’s phone conversation President of Russia Vladimir Putin with.

Indeed, the Russian Prison Administration announced on Monday that Navalnyi will be transferred to a penitentiary hospital. According to the agency, Navalnyi has agreed to take vitamin supplements.

On Wednesday, Navalnyi supporters will hold demonstrations across Russia.

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