I would reiterate what I try to say all the time, that this life is not about survival, that we are not to follow animal instincts. The Gospel message is about giving your life away so that you can find it. Honestly, everything is poisoned and spiritually defiled since long before we were born. All the air, all the water and all the edible things are in fact ruined. Now we have genetically altered or cloned foods that are not labeled, the only way to tell is to look at them on the molecular level.
These abominations are spread by such things as birds and are now practically everywhere and almost untraceable. Everything is most likely corripted in multiple ways, or at least in one way or another. Starvation for the sake of Christ is looking more and more reasonable all the time. I want to stay away from all uncleanness, so there appears to be little alternative.
But there are plenty of works about what can be eaten in the wild, if we choose to simply try and keep our distance from corrupt society as much as possible. I am not able to list all the pros and cons here in this post, but I wanted to offer something.
My childhood memories recall that Euell Gibbons (I have all of his books) was a spokesperson for Grape Nuts Cereal and did a commercial saying that “every bit of a pine tree is edible.” The pine nuts are good, the needles can be soaked so that the vitamin C seeps out and then simply drink the water. Soak any part of the tree and it should eventually become soft to chew. Yew was used as a poison on arrows and might be thought of as a pine because of its evergreen needles.
Cedar, Arborvitae or Juniper is good right off the tree — it freshens the breath (almost like mint, or probably more like a menthol taste). A word of caution, it has the same chemical as Sage, Mistletoe, Rosemary and Wormwood, so to much can be bad. Just nibble on it. The bluish grey berries are medicinal and are good for the urinary tract. Basically, there are no poisonous conifers, but too much of anything might kill you.
National Geographic did an article in 1920 about which mushrooms were edible or not. Here is a 2.2MB zip file which has some color plates for identification.
Edible leaves are always a nice alternative. There are Pot Herbs; as well as perennial leaf crops; a list of edible leaves and this informative page from The Sustainability Wiki.
Here in there desert many cactus are edible, I have ate every part of the Prickly Pear Cactus before, minus the pricks (thorns).
The plant known as ‘Cattail’ is one of the best wild edible plants.
It is amazing how long the body can really live without food, some people say they have gone 45 days without food and remained in good health. Fasting is actually very healthy. The strict Old Believers fast for over half the year anyway.
The area known as the Adirondacks in the state of New York is named after the American Indians who lived off of eating bark from the trees in that area. The name means ‘bark eaters.’
The less we put into our body the less defiled things will come out, so there can be benefits to consuming less.
It is said that before the Great Flood, at the time of Noah, mankind was entirely vegetarian. We should take note of that.
If we must eat, raw foods are best. Fish is acceptable to eat raw, except on prescribed fast days when fish is allowed to be eaten dried for a holy day. There is the problem of more and more mercury being found in fish, so perhaps one serving a week is all we should take. Even farm raised fish are more than a little bit questionable, if you ask me. Mercury is spewed out of all the concrete manufacturing plants like a bunch of volcanoes.
God commanded that bread be made from certain mixed grains, whole grains was the idea, which is to be cooked (baked). This is how the Fathers ate. It is very simple to make a clay stove like the old Russians did.
King Nebuchadnezzar went into the wilderness a mad man, ate only grass for seven years, and returned sane.
Almost everything is edible, but things may not be very palatable. Just because we can eat something does not mean it wont kill us. Non-poisonous berries are good for various uses, even to make wine or beer. Even things which would normally be edible can become corrupted by something getting into it from outside, that is why keeping food (and water) covered is important. Oleanders contain a toxin, so be mindful of that. The poison is in the sticky sap and will cause harm, even death. Fumes from burning Olenanders’ are likewise poisonous. All parts of Azaleas, Rhododendrons, and Mountain Laurel (Kalmia) are toxic, as well as honey made from the flowers.
If you ask me it is not such a good time to be keeping animals, especially for food.
We can even eat clean dirt, there are many Christian references to ascetics doing so. A Russian named Mishechka was famous for his habit of eating clay.
Our body can absorb nutrients (or poisons) through the skin, or even through the lungs, so that is something to think about.
Something else to realize is that it is a fact that food can be mind control, or how certain foods can control your brain:
This is one reason to abstain from meat, that meat tends to make us more aggressive, so it is far better to be humble and eat veggies.
Remember, the Lord had food that His disciples did not know of, so can we.