To live solely on prana derived from the sun, breatharians replace their food with this life force. While food is processed to produce energy in the body, the body cells of breatharians absorb energy directly from the light, or life force.
In his Yoga Sutras, Sage Patanjali writes that performing samyama aids the yogi to be liberated from the need to consume food for survival. Samyama is the practice of integrating dharana, dhyana and samadhi, and is the supreme level of mind control.
The art of living off prana is also called Prana yoga. The practice involves deep breathing and sun gazing. Breatharianism, according to its followers, is not starving, but, rather, replacing food with a spiritual source to sustain life.