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View Full Version : Does eating rabbit leech nutrition from you?


Apocalypso
02-16-2013, 06:46 AM
So I am reading Pterry's Snuff. Don't want to spoil since there might be people still reading it. I'm about halfway through it now, so I'd appreciate others not spoiling anything either.
Anyways, one character mentions that you can't live on rabbit. The other says it leeches something from the body, something you need to live. You need to eat something else or you will not survive long on this diet.

I've not eaten rabbit before and don't really know much about it. My first thought was you would get Scurvy eating meat but no fruit or veggies. But that doesn't fit the passage in the book, which claims that rabbit "removes something" from one's body. So what's the Straight Dope? Does rabbit leech some essential vitamins or minerals from the body if it is eaten exclusively? What would you die from? How long would it take (approximately)? Does this imply that you can survive exclusively on beef or pork or chicken, or at least longer than you would on rabbit? Or is it any all-meat diet that's not sustainable, and pterry was just putting it in the discworld vernacular?

GuanoLad
02-16-2013, 07:01 AM
QI addressed this (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XC2RYiaM6WU). You use up more vitamins than the rabbit provides. But eat other foods alongside it and you'd be fine.

Malacandra
02-16-2013, 07:29 AM
Also google "Rabbit starvation" in case you want something more authoritative than Stephen "Patronising Smartypants" Fry. :D

bump
02-16-2013, 07:52 AM
It's actually not a vitamin deficiency, but rather an imbalance in the amount of protein consumed vs. fat and/or carbohydrates consumed.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rabbit_starvation

Captain Amazing
02-16-2013, 08:02 AM
QI addressed this (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XC2RYiaM6WU). You use up more vitamins than the rabbit provides. But eat other foods alongside it and you'd be fine.

It's not the vitamins so much as the protein. Rabbit meat is really lean, so it's almost all protein, and the human body can only digest so much protein. So, if you just eat rabbit meat or something else that's just protein, you're not going to be able to metabolize enough calories to survive.

Anonymous Coward
02-16-2013, 04:03 PM
I've read that eating the organs of the rabbit is a good way to stave off rabbit starvation.

njtt
02-17-2013, 10:33 AM
....
(I knew a cat who made a habit
Of eating nothing else but rabbit,
And, when he'd finished, licked his paws
So as not to waster the onion sauce.)

terentii
02-17-2013, 10:52 AM
NB: Leech is a noun. Leach is the verb.

Johnny L.A.
02-17-2013, 11:00 AM
Will eating leeches give you rabbit fever?

terentii
02-17-2013, 11:17 AM
Will eating leeches give you rabbit fever?

Dunno. But I think a leech might leach your blood.... :confused:

Ulfreida
02-17-2013, 11:38 AM
The well-known sea kayaker John Dowd and his kayak mate experienced this off the coast of Patagonia, when they could not get to shore, and, moored precariously to the kelp beds, survived on a diet of raw sea duck. It weakened them so much that they could barely paddle in the freezing stormy waters, but once they got to their cache and added sweetened condensed milk to their raw sea duck diet, they revived.

Whenever I think of ocean-going adventures I always remember this, and stay home.

Don't Panic
02-17-2013, 02:22 PM
QI addressed this (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XC2RYiaM6WU).
OK, so let me see if I've understood this correctly now. If you eat rabbit... you'll die? Please let me know if there's something I've missed.

AndrewL
02-17-2013, 02:41 PM
The well-known sea kayaker John Dowd and his kayak mate experienced this off the coast of Patagonia, when they could not get to shore, and, moored precariously to the kelp beds, survived on a diet of raw sea duck. It weakened them so much that they could barely paddle in the freezing stormy waters, but once they got to their cache and added sweetened condensed milk to their raw sea duck diet, they revived.


I find it surprising that a diet of duck would cause rabbit starvation, since duck is a fatty meat, unlike rabbit. Might it have been some other nutrient deficiency?

Robot Arm
02-17-2013, 03:19 PM
OK, so let me see if I've understood this correctly now. If you eat rabbit... you'll die? Please let me know if there's something I've missed.Not quite. A little rabbit is fine, just don't eat lots of it.

terentii
02-17-2013, 10:43 PM
OK, so let me see if I've understood this correctly now. If you eat rabbit... you'll die? Please let me know if there's something I've missed.

You just have to balance your diet, that's all.

Apocalypso
02-18-2013, 09:32 AM
OK, so let me see if I've understood this correctly now. If you eat rabbit... you'll die? Please let me know if there's something I've missed.

If you eat nothing but rabbit meat for a while, yes (according to the links).
Thanks to everyone for the info, I had no idea this was possible. Sorry for the leech/leach confusion.

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