Why Do Vampires Drink Blood?
Being mythical creatures, and very popular ones at that, there are a lot of interpretations of vampires, what they do and how they act, what they want and of course, what they need. Vampires appear in all sorts of fiction, mythologies, legends, cultures, and yes, believe it or not, non-fiction. Thus each author’s interpretation makes its way into each of the stories and the details of a vampire become clouded. Certain characteristics always stay the same, however, and this is what forms the general idea of what is a vampire. One of the most characteristic features of vampires is that they drink blood ‘š they do vary in the type of blood, of course, some drinking any sort of blood except human because they dislike the idea of it, and some drinking nothing but human blood ‘š but they all drink it.
The main accepted reason as to why they drink blood is quite simple ‘š they need to in order to survive. Of course, why they need is varies. Some people believe that it is a punishment from God or another omnipotent being or meta-being, because they accepted long life from Satan, Lucifer, or the Devil, or the counter-omnipotent being. Because they exist in many cultures, it is difficult to classify which religion they are a part of or not a part of ‘š but in essence, the blood-drinking is a punishment, to suck the life-force (blood) out of a living being, killing them to survive.
Another popularly held theory is that because vampires have no blood themselves (often the reason that vampires are cold to the touch) and thus need to drink blood in order to replenish the supply of oxygen to their muscles. This is a much more scientific explanation, and as with many other mythological creatures (or not so mythological?) a scientific explanation can add credibility, but it can also take it away. Unfortunately, our body cannot digest blood ‘š we cannot simply absorb blood by drinking it, so this would not really help a vampire (of course, their bodies are different than ours, but,¦) and also, bodies and muscles need constant supply, and vampires aren’t known for breathing in blood like air, but rather drinking it. In normal physiological properties, this can’t be why vampires need blood.
I choose to think of blood for vampires as a water source for us ‘š they cannot survive without it, but they do not need it constantly. It is a source of life for them, as water is for us. It also would provide nourishment for them, as food does for us, but as food is less important to us than water, this would be more of a secondary feature.