Chapter 7 – Lifestyles
“Man is what he eats.” – Ludwig Feuerbach
One of the hardest sections to write about is what Homo Superior (Cro-Magnons) used to eat and what they did not. We know that genetically they were superior to their Homo ancestors in height, weight and speed, but were these advantages just genetic or were they enhanced by their diet? If so, what can we learn for these ‘giants’ of history?
We should remember that Homo Superior were on average about 6’6” tall and of ‘a thick muscular build’ like their paternal mothers the Neanderthals. Consequently, they would have weighed about 125kg – 150Kg. This doesn’t mean that this is the maximum size of Homo Superior, as we can see in our own civilisation, as some of us grow to over 6’ and even a few to 7’ (and go on to play basketball) – although technically, current Homo Sapiens (in the west) are an average 5’ 10” tall for males and 5’ 6” for females. This leads us to believe that some Homo Superiors may have easily grown over 8’ or more and weigh over 175Kg.
So what on earth did these ‘giants’ eat to sustain these vast energy levels and more importantly, why have we not maintained this natural stature and have shrunk in comparison?
If you search the internet you will find all manner of ‘Prehistoric Palaeodiets’ and ideas of what they used to eat in the past. Some so called ‘experts’ have suggested that Homo Superiors ate ants and crushed animal bones for the marrow. Others believed that the Homo Superior ate small vermin and the occasional rabbit or hare. These ridiculous suggestions are based on a primitive caveman ideology and not the real scientific evidence we have now uncovered. Previously, we showed that Homo Superior were born as natural ‘hunters’ and created tools like bows that allowed them to ‘silently’ shoot ‘razor sharp’ arrows to kill their prey almost instantly by maximising blood loss. These skills would have never been achieved or warranted if they subsisted on rabbits and hares, as it is plainly overkill to hunt a weak prey such as rabbits and hares in this manner.
The archaeological evidence indicates that Homo superior ate large animals, and they followed the herds into ‘Doggerland/Atlantis’ after the last ice age including reindeer and venison. But there were lots of other animals and meats around, so why did they decide on these varieties?
“Reindeer meat is fine-fibred, tender and lean. The meat is very healthy with more vitamins and micronutrients and less fat than pork or beef. Reindeer meat is also an ethical choice for free grazing and a cleaner environment. Today, reindeer meat is prized for its rich flavour, tenderness and low fat content. Reindeer meat is also known for its wild taste, which should not be spoilt by too much spice when preparing for cooking. For best results, cook to medium rare.” Wikipedia.
Reindeer meat has more protein than beef, mutton or mammoth – but with less fat content. So clearly the Homo Superior knew what constitutes ‘good meat’ and what constitutes bad ‘fatty meat’. The Homo Superiors major innovation of boats led to them fishing in both freshwater and the seas off the coasts of Europe. Another new tool for the period ‘the harpoon’ laid testament to the size of the fish and sea mammals hunted; and the wicker fish traps we found in Eastern Europe also shows the diversity and number of the fish and crustaceans caught. This is what scientists say about a fish diet:
“The role of omega-3 fatty acids such as eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid in preventing coronary artery disease has gradually been elucidated, and there is increasing evidence that fish oils have a cardioprotective effect. Many trials have since shown the benefit of taking fish oils or eating a diet rich in fish, and the American Heart Association recommends an increase in the dietary intake of omega-3 fatty acids. Cardioprotective benefits have been observed with daily consumption of both wild and farmed fish, which are both high in omega-3 fatty acids. The consumption of as little as one fish meal weekly has been shown to be beneficial, with dose-dependent greater benefits up to about five fish meals per week.
A large randomized trial of 18,000 patients with hypercholesterolemia (observed for 5 years) showed that adding 1800 mg/day of eicosapentaenoic acid to statin treatment resulted in a significant reduction in major coronary events compared with the controls who received statin treatment alone. The euphoria of conquering coronary artery disease by a simple diet change has been tempered by a plethora of papers that warn against eating fish because of the risk of mercury poisoning of the central nervous system. The stark choice, if one believes the mercury poisoning enthusiasts, can be summarized as between living a shorter life with the mental abilities of an Einstein or living a long life as a moron. “
Mental abilities of Einstein!!
Homo Superior lived a harmonious life with nature and unlike future generations did not pollute their waters with mercury or other chemicals from farming. – The report continues;
“Mercury enters the atmosphere by combustion of waste and coal. The element then enters the oceans from the atmosphere where it is converted to methyl mercury by microorganisms and then taken up by marine life and concentrated in fish. As methyl mercury is not fat soluble, unlike dioxins, it does not reside in the fatty tissues. Methyl mercury is strongly neurotoxic, as shown by studies in Iraq where the consumption of bread contaminated by a fungicide containing methyl mercury resulted in mental retardation, seizures and microcephaly in infants.
The concentration of methyl mercury in fish is increased by fish eating other fish for food. Fish that are not predatory, such as sardines, salmon and shrimp, therefore have very low levels of methyl mercury. By contrast, predatory fish such as shark, tuna, swordfish and orange roughly have higher levels of methyl mercury. Interestingly, the much-maligned farmed fish have the lowest levels of methyl mercury. To add another level of complexity to the debate, although methyl mercury per se is very neurotoxic, in fish methyl mercury is bound to cysteine, and this compound has a tenth of the toxicity of pure methyl mercury.
What evidence is there that the intake of methyl mercury from eating fish causes neural damage in humans?
In the Faroe Islands a study was conducted in a cohort of infants over a 14-year period. The study examined the development of the nervous system in children who were born to mothers who ate pilot whale meat daily in their diet. This study showed that there was a correlation between high prenatal mercury intake by the mother and neurological developmental deficits in the infant.
By contrast, in the Seychelle islands where women eat 12 fish meals a week, no effects on infant neurological development were noted despite the fact that the mean methyl mercury concentration in the hair of Seychelle island inhabitants, including infants, was 10-20 times that seen in US inhabitants. The concentration of methyl mercury in fish caught around the Seychelles, however, was similar to that found around the US — 0.05-0.25 ppm. The higher levels of methyl mercury found in the Seychelle islanders were therefore due to the islanders eating more fish rather than eating highly contaminated fish. By contrast, pilot whale meat has 10 times the concentration of methyl mercury that is found in ocean fish (1.6 ppm).
The difference between the data from the Faroes and the Seychelles is therefore likely to be largely because individuals in the Faroe Islands had much higher exposures to methyl mercury, because they ate marine mammals and not fish. It should be noted that a toxic level of mercury in hair is estimated to be 50 ppm, and even with a safety factor of 10, which reduces the threshold to 5 ppm, the levels of the Seychelle islanders eating 12 fish meals a week was only a mean of 6.8 ppm.” Nature Clinical Practice Gastroenterology & Hepatology, 2012.
Furthermore, with just two sources of food we have the reason why Homo Superior was leaner and more intelligent, shown by possessing the largest brains (1600cc+) in the evolutionary history of man. But to judge accurately how superior and natural Homo Superior’s diet was in comparison to our own, we must understand what happened at the end of the Mesolithic period, known as the ‘Neolithic Farming Revolution’, this will give us a clear understanding of why we are still smaller and mentally inferior to Homo Superior even today after four hundred years of medical and scientific research.
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