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Are we really genetically similar to the paleo men and women?

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  • #16
    This has been addressed here:

    Is Modern Wheat Unhealthy? | Mark's Daily Apple

    The wheat eaten by our paleo ancestors is not the wheat eaten today. It is a genetically modified "dwarf" variant designed towards high yield and high empty calorie in order to feed an ever growing population. I'm always a little torn regarding this subject because modern agriculture has allowed our society to advance in many positive ways, and more closer to home has provided a good living to members of my extended family. I'm not a researcher or a scientist so I can only rely on the work others have done and decide for myself whether or not I believe it. I believe the above referenced article because for me the proof is in the pudding: serious weight loss, better blood work, no more indigestion or acid reflux, better sleep, happier disposition and all around feeling of general well being. Tells me Sisson, Cordain, Wolf and others (backed by lots of science) are on the right track.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by The Scientist View Post
      You made three claims here, and I'll try to respond to each:

      1. "The child will eat grains from Day 1 and probably live to the age of 70 when he or she will die of health related issues (we can't say for sure these are grain related health issues but I would concede that dietary choices most likely lead to the death of the person). So essentially the body has coped with daily consumption of grains for 70 years. Could paleolithic people have done that? hardly. Therefore we are very different to the paleolithic man."

      You are making the mistake of directly comparing the two environments. We live in a world where grains (and sugar, and nearly everything else) is freely available year round. A paleolithic community would have had chronic food shortages, making it impossible to over-eat consistently. They also would have been much more active than we are. I think that the downsides of grains are most pronounced when they are over-consumed and combined with a sedentary existence. The paleolithic people we are talking about would not have had the option to over-eat. In fact, archeological evidence clearly shows that when a population of people transitions from a hunter/gatherer strategy to agriculture, their health (evidenced by shorter stature and smaller bones) declines. Grains allowed populations to explode in number because total calories increased, but this just spread more calories among more people, leaving each individual short on food and especially short on nutrients because of grain consumption instead of animal/plant food. So, you are right in one way – we are very different from paleolithic man in our environment. We are not significantly different genetically for the vast majority of our genome.

      2. "As an aside, the paleolithic man was all over the world so his diet depended on the environment. Paleo asians ate differently to paleo africans and paleo europeans and paleo americans etc. So do we look at our genetic heritage to look at what our particular paleo ancestors ate and then replicate that? "

      This is true. Individual components varied. What they had in common was a diet filled with meat, seafood, nuts and vegetables and fruits (native fruit, not the artificially selected bags of sugar we call fruit)

      3. "And another thing about dairy, do you really think paleo people didn't drink milk? I mean seriously, of course they drank milk. This is another con that the paleo gurus try to pull."

      I hate to be harsh, but this clearly shows that you don't understand what you are talking about. The paleolithic period is defined as the time prior to the advent of agriculture and domestication of animals. Given that there were no domesticated animals at the time, you must be suggesting that these people captured a female mammal that had recently given birth, tied her down, and milked her before going in for the kill and enjoying the meat.

      I will concede to your points about the domestication of animals. Perhaps the paleo man did not drink milk. I was under the idea that they had animals to enjoy but it seems I am wrong. I am not afraid to admit I am wrong about things

      I also agree with your first paragraph. Paleo man was NEVER obese so clearly the way we use grains today is quite different.

      To be honest, I can't disagree with your post at all.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by paul900 View Post
        I don't have an agenda at all I am just pointing out a fact. This is a known fact my dear
        And my little sweet pea, I am remarking about the size of the font you chose, not the statement you made. Size matters, you know, and it appears you have a need to overcompensate.
        Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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        • #19
          I'm trying to understand how one of the most reasonable and rational arguments I have ever had wound up taking place in an online forum. Thank you for being open-minded about it.

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          • #20
            Keep posting, wd.'ya? Both you and the OP especially (but not exclusively-everyone was good).

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            • #21
              Originally posted by paul900 View Post
              Paleo man was NEVER obese so clearly the way we use grains today is quite different.
              Don't be too sure about that! Here Venus from Willendorf, 20.000 AC:

              "All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident."

              - Schopenhauer

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              • #22
                I will if there is something I can add to. It seems like al the OP's original questions have been addressed. I'm off now for a date with a bird.

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by Gorbag View Post
                  Don't be too sure about that! Here Venus from Willendorf, 20.000 AC:

                  A fertility goddess – the ideal baby maker. Ironic how they idealized fat and probably made all the unlucky thin women feel insecure.

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by The Scientist View Post
                    A fertility goddess the ideal baby maker. Ironic how they idealized fat and probably made all the unlucky thin women feel insecure.
                    Yep, that's Grok's ideal woman, the female standard that every respected woman at the time wanted to look like...
                    "All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident."

                    - Schopenhauer

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by The Scientist View Post
                      I will if there is something I can add to. It seems like al the OP's original questions have been addressed. I'm off now for a date with a bird.
                      Scientist -

                      Thanks for the posts. You said basically what most of us here understand but couldn't have said in a way that was nearly as concise, understandable, or accurate. Hope you enjoyed your avian adventures.
                      The Champagne of Beards

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                      • #26
                        How much of our DNA do we share with chimps and bonobos?

                        We're still pretty darn close, after diverging around 5 million years ago.

                        So we're even closer to our direct ancestors, ya think?



                        AC

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by AlanC View Post
                          How much of our DNA do we share with chimps and bonobos?

                          We're still pretty darn close, after diverging around 5 million years ago.

                          So we're even closer to our direct ancestors, ya think?



                          AC
                          This is an extremely complicated question. Of course we are more genetically similar to our most recent ancestors (chimps) than any other species, and then come great apes, and then monkeys, and then other mammals etc... The problem is that biologists use similarity across the whole genome, or maybe in a specific set of genes, to judge "genetic similarity". This is great for deciding who is most closely related to whom in evolutionary history, but it doesn't answer questions about physiology. For example:

                          A single base pair change (1 out of 3,000,000,000!) in the right gene can give you muscular dystrophy, early onset Alzheimer's disease, lactose intolerance, etc,...

                          On the other hand, there are entire genes that have become mostly obsolete that comprise several thousand base pairs that could be deleted and we probably would not see any effect at all.

                          This means that looking at genetic similarity can tell us all about our past evolutionary ancestry, but it really can't answer questions about how similar we are to other animals as far as physiology goes, because tiny changes genetically can make big differences physiologically. To answer the physiology questions, there is no way around doing carefully controlled and time consuming experiments. Most of these experiments will probably never be done due to the huge number of questions to answer, and the monetary and man-hour cost of answering them. So... the best we can do is assume that each species is best adapted to the environment that it spent most of its evolutionary time in, and then confirm the big questions for humans through experiment.

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                          • #28
                            I think it's curious that to defend both grain eating and vegetarianism people want to reject our genetic similarity with Homo sapiens of 10,000 years ago or so and embrace a genetic similarity to apes and other hominid species that aren't Homo sapiens.
                            Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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                            • #29
                              Originally posted by paul900 View Post
                              So I am actually wrong about grains being introduced in the last 10,000 years. It seems we have been eating grains for 40,000 years
                              Yes there may be evidence that they ground grains, good source of calories but not a sustainable way to eat. You need close to 70sq ft of modern high yield wheat to make one loaf of bread. If we look at natural grasses I would guess you would need a field between 140-200 sq feet to make one loaf. I can not imagine a hunter gatherer cutting, thrashing and grinding a drive way full of grass everyday to make a loaf of bread....that is not sustainable.
                              Last edited by Dirlot; 11-23-2012, 08:06 AM.
                              Eating primal is not a diet, it is a way of life.
                              PS
                              Don't forget to play!

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                              • #30
                                Changes that have made their way into our genome in the last 10,000 years are a different story. For example, the lactose dehydrogenase (LDH) gene, which processes lactose in milk, was selected for expression into adulthood because people in their reproductive years clearly benefited from being able to get more calories from milk they collected from domesticated animals.
                                So, if the thesis is that the adaptations only develop to the harm that strikes early in life, does that mean that lactose intolerance exhibits its harmful effects earlier in life than the grain intolerance?
                                My Journal: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread57916.html
                                When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.

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