Will Drinking Animal Blood Keep You Hydrated: The Bloody Truth

Will Drinking Animal Blood Keep You Hydrated

Drinking animal blood may sound creepy, or evil to most people, but there are many cases where human beings take animal blood throughout the world. Blood contains water and would help in keeping you alive in dire hydration cases. Besides water though,  blood has a high level of iron. The human body does not have a mechanism to dispel the iron hence may cause problems.

Will drinking animal blood keep you hydrated? There is no clinical proof or recorded studies to prove that drinking blood can hydrate a human being. Many studies carried out about people drinking animal blood, though scarce, have established other reasons that humans take animal blood. However, no organization, government, or agency has documented that animal blood can help the body in hydration, or any other way.  

Are There People Who Drink Blood To Keep Hydrated

Clinical vampirism is one of the documented cases of people who have a compulsion to drink blood. Though rare, Renfield’s syndrome named after ‘Dracula’, a character from Bram Stocker is a proven disorder. 

People suffering from clinical vampirism condition thirst for human or animal blood as a biological need to maintain vitality and health. The cause of clinical vampirism is unknown as there is very little information on it and clinical findings on the same are sparse. However, some sanguinarians suggest that the urge to drink blood is driven by mental needs and not physical. 

In some cultures and recipes, animal blood is used to thicken sauces and soups. Others use it to make some form of sausages or cook as part of a meal. Animal blood makes various delicacies. 

People like the Maasai from Africa drink animal blood from live animals. The diet is healthy and sustainable for their lifestyles as it has been practiced over the years. They drink fresh uncooked blood right from the cow’s vein. To them, it is not any different from milking the cows. Sometimes, they mix with the milk to make a special drink. It is hard to tell if the Maasai people drink blood for hydration purposes though. However, the areas occupied by the community have water scarcity.

Apart from the Maasai, people in Nepal hold an annual blood drinking festival every November. Hundreds of thousands of cattle are slaughtered to honor a goddess and they drink the blood raw. Monks also drink blood from live animal veins in a similar festival in the highlands of Nepal. Though this festival has been in practice for ages, it is clear people from Nepal and Monks drink animal blood for religious reasons and not hydration purposes.

Most of the other cultures consume blood in cooked form and not raw like the ones above for various reasons. 

Risks Involved In Drinking Animal Blood To Hydrate You

Unlike animals, animals, and vampires, the human body does not have the specialized mechanisms to digest blood. Consuming blood from animals will, therefore, suppress your body and digestion system causing health problems. 

Though drinking small quantities of animal blood may not be a reason for alarm, large amounts can cause harm. 

Hemochromatosis is a condition caused by the buildup of iron in the bloodstream and is potentially fatal. 

Many diseases can easily be transmitted from animals to humans through drinking the animal blood or even contact with an infected animal. Infected animals pass the diseases through eating meat that is not well cooked; drinking raw blood is risky in such cases. Animal blood is also prone to bacteria that can easily be passed to the person drinking it.

Can Drinking Blood Treat Some Conditions And Keep You Hydrated?

EPP (Erythropoietin protoporphyria) is a rare disorder which makes the skin very sensitive to the sun. Today, doctors advise patients suffering from the condition to avoid sun exposure and have regular blood transfusions to ease the symptoms. 

There is speculation, that earlier people drank animal blood and avoided exposure to the sun to treat the EPP. 

Though blood transfusion works very differently with the ingestion of blood, some people believe drinking animal blood boosts their blood count. When consumed, animal blood goes through the same process as any other food or drink. The vital minerals that can be absorbed in the body are taken in and the rest released. 

What To Consider Before Taking Animal Blood To Keep Hydrated

You may want to take the red drink for some reasons, whether curiosity or experimental purposes. Before you do it, it is crucial to think through.

The animals should be free of any bacteria. It is always wise to consult a vet to screen the blood and ensure that it is safe from diseases. Some cases may turn fatal if contracted. 

Talk to your doctor and a nutritionist as well. Knowing the risk you are about to take will ensure that you get the required help in case things head downhill.

Establish your purpose so that you may tell if you have achieved what you wanted at the end. If it is for experimental purposes, work with experts in the particular field. 

Get reviews and advice if possible. There is hardly anything new under the sun, hence high chances that whatever you are about to indulge in, someone has tried it before. You do not want to be another statistic. Going through reviews will help you avoid bad things and keep to the safe side.

Most animals, like human beings, retaliate when they sense danger. Getting to retrieve animal blood is a dangerous undertaking if you are not planning to kill it. Always plan for the safest way to get the animal’s blood. It is safer to have blood from animals slaughtered for food.

Avoid wild animals blood regardless of your cravings for blood. In dire situations though like stranded in a forest and almost dying from dehydration, grabbing a snake and drinking its blood may pass as a survival tactic. 

If you plan to drink the blood and leave the animal alive, consider the location and depth of laceration. You do not want to hit a major artery or vein and kill the animal in the process. 

Biting the animal is not hygienic or safe. Remember to sterilize anything that you may want to use for a laceration. 

After laceration, wash the area and apply an antibiotic ointment. Take care of it until it is completely healed.  

Ensure a doctor monitors you closely to ensure that you remain in good health after drinking animal blood. Take note of any changes that are not normal. 

Is It Legal To Drink Animal Blood For Hydration

Depending on your location, different laws protect animals’ abuse, consumption or handling. In places like the Maasai community mentioned earlier, cattle keeping is their major form of livelihood. While drinking animal blood in Maasai land may pass as a normal practice, you may land in trouble in other parts of the world.

Dinking blood from a cow in India may equate to an abomination. Always familiarize yourself with the cultures and laws of your area before trying some of these practices. One community may find drinking blood of certain animal blood interesting, while others may abhor the act. 

Final Thoughts

When in dire circumstances, animal blood can hydrate you or keep you alive. If all you can find is an animal and you are facing death, it makes sense to try cling to your dear life by all means. Other circumstance that warrants one to try indulging in such practices would be religion or for research purposes.

However, drinking human blood is a thin line that no human being should attempt to cross unless it is to save a life from dehydration. Pathogens are common in animal blood and can easily be passed from an animal to human beings. There are also no known clinical benefits of drinking animal blood hence it may be a risky act in futility.