Digipuratum

1912 Journal of the American Medical Association  
be "faint with hunger." One good meal relieves this kind of hunger which seems to be the only variety discussed by Professor Cannon. If, however, food be wholly or largely withheld for several days this first variety of hunger almost entirely passes away. As soon, however, as the body loses much weight from starvation the first variety of hunger is replaced by a psychic state, which may be called the second variety of hunger. In tliis state the mind is wholly occupied with thoughts of food. One
more » ... oughts of food. One plods along all day keen for the least sign of game or lost is reveries of past feasts, but there is no sensation of hunger nor any particular bodily feeling referred or otherwise. At night over the camp lire the men discuss various articles of diet. Newfoundlanders wistfully describe "brouse," a murderous soup thickened with codfish, salt pork and dough; half-breeds long for "bannock"; Indians recall the delights of' caribou eyes, fetus, marrow-grease and other aboriginal dainties. Nor is this obsession with thoughts of food confined to waking hours. I have never known n man to lose much weight from lack of food without dreaming of prodigal banquets. These dream feasts are a regular feature in the published accounts of starvation trips und are singularly constant, The most interesting feature of this second variety of hunger is (hat it cannot be appeased until nearly all of the weight lost from starvation is regained. As long as the sufferer is thin he is hungry, lie muy eat again nnd again till his abdomen hurls, yet he is never satisfied. The abnormal hunger of typhoid convalescents is a familiar example of this fact, but it is more noticeable in otherwise healthy people who have been living a vigorous life on insufficient food. After returning from a starvation trip, although the stomach may be as full us it will bold, a dry crust in the gutter looks appetizing and attractive. One of the most striking instances of the difficulty of appeasing (his kind of hunger occurred to me while hunting with six Indians, For n long time we had bad luck and became gaunt and thin. Some of us even lost strength which. 1 think, only occurs after all the subcutaneous and abdominal fat is absorbed. Finally one of the Indians killed a grizzly bear, not quite full-grown but in good condition nnd very fat. For forty-eight hours we did nothing lull eat and sleep and in that time we ate the whole bear except for a few scraps. As nearly as I could figure out.each of us ate 40 pounds of fat meat, clear of waste, in the two days. In consequence we nil laid diarrhea. After such feasts there is a folding of lassitude apparently due to mild profoid poisoning. The urine also acquires a strong animal odor varying with the species of animal supplying the meat. Yet in spite of these symptoms of repletion of the stomach, bowels and blood with alimentary matter, the feeling of hunger, the desire to eat, persists. To judge by their actions, s^jilge dogs are the same in this respect as human beings. II seems to me that (be only explanation of these phenomena is to assume that there is a psychic state characterized by a desire to eat. caused by the absorption from the fat-cells of tlie body of their accustomed oil-droplets. II would be an improvement in (he accuracy of the English language if we always characterized the first of these two states by the word "appetite" nnd reserved the word "hunger" for the second.
doi:10.1001/jama.1912.04260040235025 fatcat:djnmwphebnf5vc6t2kiuo4ri74