CBC News
Story Tools: PRINT | Text Size: S M L XL | REPORT TYPO | SEND YOUR FEEDBACK

The 38-hour famine

Kevin Yarr

by Kevin Yarr, CBCNews.ca

As a great lover of eating, the news that I would have to go 38 hours without solid food was quite distressing to me.

It was my turn for a colonoscopy.

I will say no more on the procedure itself. It's not appropriate to a food blog, nor is a event that you are virtually unconscious for particularly noteworthy.

But 38 hours without food…

My appointment was for 11 a.m. Friday morning, and the instructions from the doctor said no solid food after midnight Thursday. At a little before 11 p.m. Wednesday I was sitting down with a sandwich, preparing a quiet farewell to chewing for a day and a half. I followed that with a pear and a yogurt, and went to bed feeling very unsettled.

Breakfast was a large glass of white grape juice. As my family bustled around I tried to avoid watching them eat, a difficult task when you are trying to get your kids organized and off to school. Then they were gone and I settled down to work with a cup of tea.

I was quite surprised that I wasn't all that hungry, and that didn't change as the day progressed. I was, however, continually distracted by thoughts of food, though again not in the way I might have expected. It was not visions of barbecued ribs, cheesy lasagnes or coconut cream pies that were distracting me. It was little things. "I think I'll just grab a cookie," would pop into my head, as if it was someone else. "No. You won't," I would respond.

The idea would fade without so much as a whimper, only to reappear as, "How about a cheese biscuit," 20 or 30 minutes later.

And it made me wonder about eating. I have watched my kids want to eat because they were bored, or go for long stretches without because they were deeply involved in something. How much were my distractions prompted by hunger, and how much by moments of boredom, or simply by habit?

I can think of at least two occasions in the last week where I have felt hungrier than I ever did during that food-free day and a half.

By 1 p.m. on Friday I was all done, and ready to go. I had thought before about some elaborate celebratory lunch to mark the end of my fast. But still my hunger, perhaps simply by a learned lack of expectation, was at bay. I had a bowl of chicken rice soup, a biscuit, half a date square and a cup of tea.

And that was all I wanted.

Have you fasted or gone without food for a time? What was your experience?

« Previous Post | Main | Next Post »

This discussion is now Open. Submit your Comment.

« Previous Post | Main | Next Post »

Post a Comment

Disclaimer:

Note: By submitting your comments you acknowledge that CBC has the right to reproduce, broadcast and publicize those comments or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever. Please note that due to the volume of e-mails we receive, not all comments will be published, and those that are published will not be edited. But all will be carefully read, considered and appreciated.

Note: Due to volume there will be a delay before your comment is processed. Your comment will go through even if you leave this page immediately afterwards.

Privacy Policy | Submissions Policy

Food Bytes »



About the blog

From trends and culture to politics and nutrition, Food Bytes serves up tasty tidbits about food and the issues surrounding it that flavour our everyday lives.

About the writers

Amber Hildebrandt Amber Hildebrandt writes for CBCNews.ca in Toronto. Growing up on a farm in Manitoba, she acquired an insatiable appetite, but it was during a stint in Japan that she developed her discerning tastebuds and "foodie" ways.

Andrea Chiu Andrea Chiu is an associate producer at CBC Radio Digital. Though she loves to eat, cook and discuss food, don't ask her to bake. It never turns out well. She tweets as @TOfoodie on Twitter and organizes food and wine events in Toronto called FoodieMeet.

Tara Kimura Tara Kimura is the consumer life reporter for CBCNews.ca, covering a wide range of issues that range from rising food costs and the growing organic movement, to new trends in the marketplace.

Andree Lau Andree Lau is a CBC web reporter in Calgary. Her journalism career includes seven years as a CBC-TV reporter. Her own blog called "are you gonna eat that?" chronicles her eating adventures (including sampling snake and camel hoof tendon).

Jessica Wong Jessica Wong is a CBCNews.ca writer who loves to eat and cook, as well as discuss, read and watch programming about food, sometimes all at once.

Kevin Yarr Kevin Yarr, CBCNews.ca's writer in Prince Edward Island, wrote about food and beer for national and regional magazines before joining the CBC. He acquired a desire for new tastes on his first trip to Europe, and an appreciation of eating locally and in season when he finally settled down on P.E.I.

Elizabeth Bridge Elizabeth Bridge is a writer with the CBC Digital Archives in Toronto. She first ventured into the kitchen as a child to indulge a sweet tooth by baking cookies and making fudge. A student budget compelled her to be a vegetarian (for a while) and instilled in her an ongoing curiosity about food and cooking.

Related

Food features

Recent Posts

Chinese banquet dinner
Thursday, April 9, 2009
Share your Easter recipes
Thursday, April 9, 2009
Ode to the sandwich
Wednesday, April 8, 2009
Sweet treats and salty science
Monday, April 6, 2009
Peeking into your kitchen
Thursday, April 2, 2009
Subscribe to Food Bytes

Archives

April 2009 (6)
March 2009 (10)
February 2009 (9)
January 2009 (9)
December 2008 (16)
November 2008 (13)
October 2008 (12)
September 2008 (11)
August 2008 (9)
July 2008 (12)
June 2008 (10)
May 2008 (16)

Categories

Agriculture (12)
Amber Hildebrandt (22)
Amuse-bouche (32)
Andree Lau (24)
Culture (43)
Elizabeth Bridge (7)
Health (13)
Industry (26)
Jessica Wong (26)
Kevin Yarr (15)
Leigh Felesky (3)
Politics (11)
Tara Kimura (29)
Trends (33)
[an error occurred while processing this directive]
Story Tools: PRINT | Text Size: S M L XL | REPORT TYPO | SEND YOUR FEEDBACK

World »

New Orleans hurricane defences rely on swamps as much as levees video
The U.S. government is updating levees and other flood protection in and around New Orleans to prevent the devastation of another hurricane like Katrina. But just as important is a system that was protecting the city before the first levees were built: the wetlands.
Mass shootings in the U.S.: Guns, glory, broken dreams
The U.S. leads the world in mass shootings, according to a new study, and beyond access to guns, a desire for fame and social pressure to achieve the so-called American Dream could be behind what the researcher calls "an exceptionally American problem."
Migrant crisis: Arrests made in deaths of 71 in truck in Austria
Police arrested several people believed to be part of a human smuggling operation in connection with the deaths of 71 migrants who likely suffocated in a refrigerated truck found abandoned on Austria's main highway, law enforcement officials said Friday.
more »

Canada »

Analysis Spin Cycle: When should deficits stop? video
There is little denying the Liberals handed their rivals a political gift on Thursday by announcing that, should the Liberals form the next government, they will run deficits in the first three years of their mandate. It provoked seemingly out-of-character reactions from his main rivals. Economists seem less worried.
Exclusive Alberta mother fights to keep child on marijuana treatment that quells seizures
An Edmonton-area mother is challenging an attempt by the Alberta government to legally bar her four-year-old daughter from receiving a marijuana treatment the mother says has successfully quelled her daughter’s debilitating epileptic seizures.
Canada's economy: 5 reasons not to panic
A recent spate of frightening economic headlines paints a dire picture of the economy, but an examination of some basic gauges of Canadians' financial health suggests it's not all doom and gloom.
more »

Politics »

Analysis Spin Cycle: When should deficits stop? video
There is little denying the Liberals handed their rivals a political gift on Thursday by announcing that, should the Liberals form the next government, they will run deficits in the first three years of their mandate. It provoked seemingly out-of-character reactions from his main rivals. Economists seem less worried.
Who is Tom Mulcair? 5 questions Canadians asked Google video
What are the top five questions Canadians have about NDP Leader Tom Mulcair? Google Canada has compiled the data.
Strength in Democracy party taps into voter dissatisfaction with main parties
Canadians may be surprised to learn there is a sixth federal party vying for their vote with a slate of candidates that includes three incumbents — the same as the Greens and two more than the Bloc Québécois.
more »

Health »

Sorry - we can't find that page
 
CBC.ca

Sorry, we can't find the page you requested.

  1. Please check the URL in the address bar, or ...
  2. Use the navigation links at left to explore our site, or ...
  3. Enter a term in the Quick Search box at top, or ...
  4. Visit our site map page

In a few moments, you will be taken to our site map page, which will help you find what you looking for.

more »

Arts & Entertainment»

Céline Dion returns to Vegas stage with 1st show in a year video
Canadian singing superstar Céline Dion is back in Las Vegas for the first time since she halted her career in 2014 to care for her ailing husband René Angélil.
John Boyega wields lightsaber in new Star Wars Instagram teaser
The new teaser for Star Wars: The Force Awakens is as notable for its aspect ratio as it is for its meagre new content.
Mr. Robot finale postponed because of scenes 'similar' to Virginia shooting
USA Network has postponed airing the season finale of the psychological thriller Mr. Robot because of scenes that it says bear similarities to Wednesday's deadly shooting of two journalists in Virginia.
more »

Technology & Science »

New Orleans hurricane defences rely on swamps as much as levees video
The U.S. government is updating levees and other flood protection in and around New Orleans to prevent the devastation of another hurricane like Katrina. But just as important is a system that was protecting the city before the first levees were built: the wetlands.
New Facebook got 1 billion users in a single day
Earlier this week, a billion people used Facebook in a single day for the first time.
Many psychology studies fail reproducibility test
A large group of researchers set out to repeat 100 experiments published by leading psychology journals to see how often they would get the same results. Here's what they found.
more »

Money »

Canada's economy: 5 reasons not to panic
A recent spate of frightening economic headlines paints a dire picture of the economy, but an examination of some basic gauges of Canadians' financial health suggests it's not all doom and gloom.
TSX, Dow charge higher as market gloom over China dissipates
North American stock markets followed China's lead higher on Thursday, moving up 300 points as gloom over China's slowing economy dissipated.
SkyGreece Airlines 'temporarily' halting operations
SkyGreece, the fledgling airline offering flights between Europe and North America, is temporarily ceasing operations, Toronto’s Pearson airport said in tweet on Thursday evening.
more »

Consumer Life »

Sorry - we can't find that page
 
CBC.ca

Sorry, we can't find the page you requested.

  1. Please check the URL in the address bar, or ...
  2. Use the navigation links at left to explore our site, or ...
  3. Enter a term in the Quick Search box at top, or ...
  4. Visit our site map page

In a few moments, you will be taken to our site map page, which will help you find what you looking for.

more »

Sports »

[an error occurred while processing this directive]
Live WATCH NOW: World track and field championships, with Christabel Nettey in long jump final video
Watch live now for action from Day 7 of the IAAF world track and field championships in Beijing, including Canada's Christabel Nettey in the women's long jump final and Damian Warner in the decathlon 400-metre event.
Video Usain Bolt, Segway cameraman meet agin video
Usain Bolt and the clumsy cameraman who toppled him after Bolt's 200-metre victory returned to the scene of their collision Friday at the world championships in Beijing, only this time there was nobody doing backflips.
Derek Drouin soars to high jump final, Damian Warner 2nd in decathlon video
Canadian high jumper Derek Drouin took his first step towards claiming another world championship medal on Friday by qualifying for the final, while Damian Warner put himself in second place in the decathlon.
more »

Diversions »

[an error occurred while processing this directive]
more »