Michael Werner looks normal enough. He's six foot tall, grey and bespectacled, weighs in at 12-and-a-half stone and enjoys playing tennis, socialising and jogging - three brisk miles before breakfast with his wife Angelica, a nice fry-up for her and a quick coffee for him.
All very ordinary. It's just that Michael doesn't eat. At all.
In fact, the last item of food that passed his lips was a huge helping of potato salad and a slice of cake on New Year's Eve 2001.
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Michael Werner claims he gets all the sustenance he needs from the sun
Extraordinarily, the 58-year-old doctor of chemistry and father of three from Brunswick, northern Germany, claims he gets all the sustenance he needs from the sun. Oh, and the occasional coffee, fruit juice or a glass of wine if he and Angelica are enjoying a night out.
"I call it light nutrition," he explains. "But one can also talk of ethereal, Prana, Chi or cosmic energy ... it's all the same thing."
It's also known as Breatharianism, or the belief that the elements contained in air - nitrogen, carbon dioxide, oxygen and hydrogen - can sustain a body.
So far, so daft. But Dr Werner isn't your average nutter. He's a bright, well spoken scientist who was so surprised at the consequences of his bizarre diet - just four coffees and two fruit juices every day for six-and-a-half years, plus that occasional glass of wine - that he's written a book about it called Life From Light.
"I'm actually a really normal person," he insists. "Not a freak, or someone with some amazing phenomenon - just a Joe Normal."
It all started in 2000 when the Werners had a friend over for supper. "It was a stroke of providence," he says.
"One evening an old acquaintance of my wife came round for dinner. We noticed she'd become very thin, even a bit haggard, and ate nothing.
"But when we asked what was up - whether she had a problem - she told us that she'd wasn't eating any more. She claimed she didn't need to because she'd gone through a very special conversion programme and was now living from light nourishment alone."
While some people might have suggested she saw a psychiatrist, post haste, Michael - who was overweight (15 stone), unhappy and unhealthy with a passion for pizza and all things spiritual - was intrigued.
And, finally, after nine months of build-up and the New Year's Eve potato salad blow-out, he gave it a whirl - starting with a strict acclimatisation programme to help his body adapt.
"It takes three weeks," he says. "The first week is really strict - eat nothing, drink nothing.
"Every doctor will tell you this is not possible, but it is. It sounds hard, but living without water for seven days is very possible - it's all about being in the right frame of mind.
"The crucial factor in this 21-day process is self-belief. If you believe you can do this then you won't give in to the hunger.
"On the eighth day you can have some watered down fruit juice - to cleanse your body with the antioxidants.
"In the third week, you can move on to stronger, more concentrated juices. And in the last seven days, your body stabilises and gets used to its new regime."
But what about the grindingly awful hunger?
"You won't feel the burning hunger if your mental attitude is right," he says crisply. "This isn't about dieting, but respecting your body."
But he does admit to losing more than two stone and looking "like a dried out tortoise" at the end of the three-week period.
Of course, fasting isn't new. It dates back to Biblical times, was rigorously practised in Judaism and recommended by Jesus both by example and teaching - to strengthen the spiritual life by weakening the attractions of sensible pleasures. But for a matter of days and weeks - not years. To be frank, it's a miracle Dr Werner hasn't died.
Experts differ as to the absolute maximum time that human life can continue without water, but the broad consensus rests at somewhere between seven and ten days, though severe dehydration and confusion (due to the build-up of sodium and potassium in the brain) would set in sooner. In the desert, of course, lack of water can kill in a matter of hours.
So if Dr Werner is telling the truth, then his body really is extraordinary. And at six foot and 12-and-a-half stone, he's not even particularly skinny. And he claims to feel wonderful.
"I feel healthier and more vital than ever. My powers of resistance and regeneration are stronger. I'm hardly ever ill any more. Psychologically, I feel stable and mentally enriched, have much better concentration and memory than I used to and now only need five or six hours' sleep, rather than the eight or nine I used to."
And what of his libido - has it been diminished by a diet of coffee, juice and air?
"The opposite!" he trills. "Every perception - whether it is sight, skin or other sense organ - is more intense. My potency has become even stronger."
But isn't what he's doing a form of anorexia?
"Oh no! I don't eat out of a love for my body - not because I hate it. Anorexics generally have a negative rejection of their own body and food. I feel very good in my body, even feel more closely bound to my body than before.
"I've always had a very positive relationship with food. I enjoy being present at mealtimes and often think I even enjoy them better than if I were to eat!'
So what does he do at mealtimes?
"I take part in them, of course. I always drink something - sometimes water, sometimes tea, sometimes coffee, depending on the situation and my mood."
There are an estimated 5,000 Breatharianists/light nutritionists worldwide, of whom Werner
claims to know about 30. The movement has a chequered past.
In 1983 Wiley Brooks, the founder of the Breatharian Institute of America and who claimed not to have eaten for 19 years, caused outrage when he was allegedly caught ordering a chicken pie. And several female followers have died after fasting and falling into comas.
Australian Ellen "Jasmuheen" Greves was a leading proponent of the movement in the late Nineties - lecturing all over the world on the benefits of a diet of light, air and one packet of biscuits in 10 years.
However, scepticism crept in after reporters visiting her Brisbane home found it crammed with food - which she insisted belonged to her second husband, Jess Ferguson, a convicted fraudster.
And a British journalist accompanying her to her check-in desk at Heathrow was astonished when the BA clerk asked her to confirm that she'd ordered an in-flight vegetarian meal. "No, no," she replied. "Well, yes, OK, I did. But I won't be eating it."
And an attempt in 1999 to test her skill ended in near disaster. The controlled experiment, under tight security, ended after four days amid fears for her rapidly deteriorating health. She blamed the failure on the stressful circumstances under which the experiment was conducted, rather than lack of food and water.
But where Jasmuheen failed, Dr Werner claims to have proved his capabilities.
"I have taken part in two ten-day studies where everything was monitored - my blood pressure, urine, heart rate. Much of my energy comes from light and the atmosphere. I absorb energy from light - like plants - and this allows me to function fully.
"It serves as proof that I am doing what I say I am, but we still can't pinpoint how exactly. There are many questions that can't be answered yet."
Including a rather obvious one. How can he lead a healthy life on a diet of nothing when thousands of people starve to death every day? After all, there's plenty of light in Africa - couldn't all the hungry people there adopt his principals?
"Fundamentally, I am convinced it would be possible," he says. "The problem is they are convinced they will starve if they don't eat," he adds. "But I do not in any way believe that light nourishment is a method of solving the world hunger problem."
Certainly, other medical experiments have found no evidence that there is any way for starving individuals to be kept alive.
During the closing years of World War II, 36 men took part in an experiment at the University of Minnesota in which they were subjected to semi-starvation and lost a quarter of their body weight. They suffered a variety of symptoms including anaemia, fatigue, apathy, extreme weakness, irritability and mental problems.
Medical experts are unanimous in their disapproval and scepticism. Even if you survived the initial fasting period, existing on a diet of light, air and coffee for an extended period is likely to be fatal. Even Dr Werner says he would not recommend it to others.
But he says he suffers no ill-effects even six-and-a-half years into his experiment. Is there any food he misses? "Occasionally, I'll bite into some chocolate or a slice of pizza - just to annoy my three children. But the enjoyment of eating stops as it hits the back of my throat.
"But I still love being with food, to see and smell it, particularly fried, in a cafe - that is something very fine. Now and again I get an appetite - when I might eat a couple of grapes or a nut. But these days I can take it or leave it."
Not surprisingly, he comes under constant pressure to eat.
"Dealing with the practicalities of light nourishment is not simple. I am often asked when are you going to eat again? I can only answer, I don't know.
2I can only say I would be stupid to eat again, as I am doing really well. Better than ever before."
Well, perhaps. But we have only his word for it and if ever there was an experiment which should not be tried at home, this is it.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-464814/Professor-claims-survive-just-sunshine-fruit-juice.html#ixzz1yjFzk4Go
The last time Michael Werner, a 58-year-old German professor has eaten was six and a half years ago. He survives solely on liquids and sunlight, which he claims provide him with all of the nutrients and energy that he needs.
Scientist 'lives on sunlight'
A German scientist is being studied by colleagues after claiming to have eaten nothing for four years.
Cancer researcher Dr Michael Werner claims to get all his energy from sunlight.
He says he drinks only water mixed with a small amount of fruit juice.
Dr Werner has written a book about his experiences, saying that when he started the experiment he even managed to put on weight.
In his book, Living through the Energy of Light, he says: "I can't really explain what is happening on a scientific level in my case, but perhaps just a little bit of faith is all that is needed."
German colleagues who are investigating the source of Dr Werner's energy say only plants can synthesise energy from the sun, but so far they are at a loss to explain how he is managing to stay healthy.
Dr Helmut Oberritter, head of the German society for nutrition, said: "It is not possible to live on what one gets from fruit juice alone.
"There are lots of vital proteins and fats that are missing. Obviously this case needs a lot more investigating if we are to explain it."
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-464814/Professor-claims-survive-
AFTER a brisk three-mile run every morning Michael Werner sits down to breakfast with his wife Angelica.
But besides downing a coffee, he doesn’t eat a thing — in fact, he hasn’t eaten ANY food for SIX YEARS.
The 58-year-old doctor of chemistry had always been fascinated with the idea that people can function without food. Then one day in 2001 he decided it was time to put it to the test — and had his last mouthful.
He says: “One evening a friend of my wife’s came round. She claimed she had not eaten for years, then explained how.
“It was enough to persuade me to try for myself.” Michael says he followed a programme which allowed his body to get used to living purely on liquids. And he says he may get nourishment from light and the atmosphere.
Explaining the start of the process he said:
“It takes three weeks. The first week you have to be vicious and not put anything in your body — no food, no water. It sounds hard but to get to this point you also need the right frame of mind.
“This isn’t about dieting, but respecting your body. You won’t feel the burning hunger if your mental attitude is right.
“On the eighth day you can take on some fruit juice. This is to cleanse the body with the antioxidants. You need to flush your system with something.
“However, at this point the juice is very watered down.
“In the third week you can move on to stronger, more concentrated juices. In the last seven days your body stabilises and gets used to its new regime.
“The crucial factor in this 21-day process is self-belief. If you believe you can do this then you won’t give in to hunger.”
Michael Werner's daily diet
Breakfast: Coffee with milk
Lunch: Fruit juice or water followed by a coffee
Afternoon: Another espresso
Dinner: Juice or water, occasional glass of wine if socialising with friends
He is keen to distinguish his regime from the scourge of anorexia, saying: “I don’t eat at all, in the same way as these girls who are killing themselves don’t.
“But I do this out of a love for my body, not because I hate it. This means my mental attitude is totally different and the process works differently on my body.”
Yet how can Michael lead a healthy life when models such as 21-year-old Ana Carolina Reston die from starving themselves? The Brazilian died last year of kidney failure after living on a diet of just tomatoes and apples.
|Fit hit ... health check|
Michael says: “There are many questions which can’t be answered yet. But I do know that much of my energy comes from light and the atmosphere. I am absorbing energy from light, a little like plants do, and this is enough to function fully. It is a form of light nutrition.
“I believe in it and I want it, so it works. For that reason I would not recommend this to others. You have to have the correct frame of mind for it to work.”
Other scientists may be sceptical but Michael, from Brunswick in northern Germany, says: “I have taken part in two ten-day studies where everything was monitored — my blood pressure, urine, heart rate.
“It serves as proof that I am doing what I say I am, but we still can’t quite pinpoint HOW exactly.”
Those who know Michael have got used to his unusual lifestyle. He says: “I still sit down for meals with my wife and friends or when my grown-up children visit.
“It looks strange that I am at the table with nothing in front of me and it took everyone a while to get used to it. But they now know not to make food for me.”
Michael Werner’s book, Life From Light, is available now for £12.99 from Clairview Publishers.
Werner's hard science-minded approach to "living on light" is a beautiful contrast to the current small (and growing) group of more "spiritually-minded" light feeders - Jasmuheen, HRM, etc.
Dr. Werner takes a very objective look at the process and ability of the human body to receive nourishment from the "light" - i.e., prana, chi, ki, orgone, etc. With a Ph.D. in Chemistry, Dr. Werner has himself subsisted solely on prana (and water, tea, etc) since the year 2000. By sharing his experience with the world, Dr. Werner is trying to open the "materialistically-addicted" minds of fellow scientists so that they too can see that we humans are spiritual beings as well.
This book includes great information for the Western educated person as well as: transcript of a Dr. Werner lecture; Q&A w/ Dr. Werner; a 10-day hospital-run experiment in which Dr. Werner was kept in strict isolation and studied around the clock; personal experience from a dozen or so people that have also underwent the 21-day transition process; and a look into the future of science and spirituality.
For anyone interesting in the future of human evolution (that is here now), this is a great book to have. Dr. Werner's book is a perfect addition to the Jasumheen, HRM, Mantak Chia (parts of his work), and yogic books/videos that also teach these wonderous methods of living on light.
In 1935, 1912 Nobel prize winner Alexis Carrel wrote in MAN, THE UNKNOWN that there was no proof that even one molecule of food ever became part of any human being's body. Michael Werner has now proved how right Dr. Carrel was.
Theosophist Rudolf Steiner often made the same observation. When an acorn grows into an oak tree, the ground around the oak does not weigh any less, so where did the oak tree come from? The only answer is from the invisible ether, or whatever you choose to name that spiritual world.
Scoffers like the one star reviewer (cited elsewhere here) cannot fathom the obvious exception that changes the current paradigm. But Michael Werner has proven them wrong, just like Catholic nun Blessed Therese Neumann did early in the 20th century.
Anecdotal evidence points to poisoning as the reason Rudolf Steiner died so young. Steiner pointed people towards the truth in his lectures; viz., that metaphysics has primacy over physics at all times.
Read LIFE FROM LIGHT with an open & inquiring mind, and make up your own mind about its truth. And let the scoffers weep, and gnash their teeth. Their day has indeed passed by.