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  • What if there's baboon dung in your water?

    ... in the wild you may have no choice but to drink it anyway.


    The scientist settles in with the Hadza:

    We know from looking at 100s of ... samples [of Hadza faeces], that the average Hadza harbors nearly twice the microbial diversity as [an American].
    An interesting point. The seasonality of the Hadza food is quite spectacular:

    Since it was late January, we were in the wet season and wild honey and berries were plentiful. I also ate lots of tubers. During this particular field session, the Hadza camps we were working in had very little meat, save the occasional bird. In short, they were basically vegetarians! (As a side note, itís important to remember that depending on what time of year a particular anthropologists or ethnographer visits a group around the world [now or in the past], seasonality will have a significant impact on the observed foods being eaten at that point in time [this is affect is more pronounced in lower latitudes]. That said, someone visiting the Hadza, say 70 years ago during the same time I was during this field session, would note that their diet was 95% plants. On the flipside, visit the Hadza during November, you would see lots of meat and a different picture of the plant:animal ratio would emerge.
    It's an interesting post, and what the man finds is more complex and contrary to what he expected:

    I originally thought that being in this new, microbially-rich environment, I would quickly acquire a greater diversity of gut bacteria
    But no.



    The latest post from the always interesting Human Food Project:

    Microbial Diversity: sometimes you have it, sometimes you don't - Human Food Project

  • #2
    Very interesting article. I'm wondering what methods the Hadza use to get their honey - I can't imagine they have many bee keeping suits. Also, I wonder just what kind of plants he ate. Would have been interested in a breakdown.

    M.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by MEversbergII View Post
      Very interesting article. I'm wondering what methods the Hadza use to get their honey - I can't imagine they have many bee keeping suits. Also, I wonder just what kind of plants he ate. Would have been interested in a breakdown.
      Yeah, I think they get the honey from the wild. The same seems to have gone for the Bushmen (sometimes called San, which sounds more scientific, although I think the Bushmen themselves have said they prefer the name Bushmen, on account San was a name used for them by some of their traditional enemies). IIRC, among the Bushmen, if you found and marked a tree with a nest in no one else would touch it -- but ownership here is ownership of a found, not cultivated, resource. (And I'm sure the owner would share the find.)

      The Bushmen sometimes found honey in cooperation with the Honeyguide bird:

      honey guide (bird) -- Encyclopedia Britannica

      Or the "honey badger" (ratel):

      ratel (mammal) -- Encyclopedia Britannica

      Laurens Van der Post even claimed in one of his books that Man, bird, and ratel were known to work together as an inter-species team of three. Maybe -- although I think Sir Laurens, interesting man and important writer as he was, would … err ... exaggerate at times.

      It seems that the bird leads the way, and the man breaks the nest open, throwing some honeycomb to his helper. If he didn't they'd soon learn. Interesting stuff. Animals definitely do seem to be able to learn -- witness, for example, that game in an area that hasn't seen Man before has been described as much less wary. The same even seems to go for fish. The Encylopedia Britannica article on the ratel linked above says that the ratel also can also break open a nest, which the bird can't -- although the bird can find them.

      I think you're more sceptical than I am, judging from an earlier post of yours, but personally I'd also not rule out some kind of unconscious, wordless communication between man and the animals/birds. And if this kind of thing does go on, the Bushmen, who have not all the distractions we have in our society, are the ones who would be open to it. It's said that the Bushman women always know when the men have killed.

      The Hadza honey-gathering I don't know about. If they don't cooperate with birds or animals, they at any rate would be able to get some idea of where resources were by observing animal behaviour -- maybe they'd even note which way bees foraging for nectar returned. I daresay they might know about smoking the bees to calm them down, too.

      On the fruit -- in a previous post he says:

      No matter the season, fibrous baobab fruit and subsurface tubers are a daily constant for the Hadza. Yes, they consume lots and lots of dietary fiber!
      (Re)Becoming Human - Human Food Project

      I know … not very detailed. But there's a little more there.


      Geoff Bond, an anthropologist with dietary interests who's been around for awhile has a little here:

      Geoff Bond's Natural Eating Book Review - Book-Review-Hadza-Marlowe

      He's recommending a book by a Frank W. Marlow there. Maybe there'd be more in that.

      I think the fruit that peoples like this tend to find and eat in the wild is very much more fibrous than modern cultivated varieties. It's also very much less sweet -- more like an avocado, than, say, a peach. But, then again, much as I agree in principle with the low-carb approach (for most people, at any rate) I guess, to return to the first topic, some hunter-gatherers eat huge amounts of honey when it's around albeit it may have a few fatty grubs in it!

      I feel myself that while it's possible to give some general guidelines on diet -- and that something like current paleo/low carb/WAPF diets are as good as anything and better than most -- we don't really understand such a complex topic as human dietary needs very well. It's interesting to me that Jeff Leach in that article there doesn't find what he expects and hardly knows how to begin interpreting his results -- he seems more to be proffering suggestions.

      I originally thought that being in this new, microbially-rich environment, I would quickly acquire a greater diversity of gut bacteria. It’s also important to note that I did not participate in the butchering of any animals during this period, as none were killed. But I have no idea if the messiness of butchering would have contributed to my overall gut microbe diversity. In general it seems the diversity of bacteria I brought with me to the field suffered some losses – possibly some combination of flat out disappearance or at least … not detectable by 16s methods. This could also be a function of diet – ie, new substrates for the gut microbes to munch on – or being nudged out by new members acquired from this new lifestyle. In either case, the chaotic reorganizing seen in the first graph above suggests that at least in the first few days my losses – for whatever reason – out paced my acquisition of new members.
      It's refreshingly honest. It seems to possiblysuggest that the state of our knowledge is not currently that impressive. LOL

      Comment


      • #4
        Here in New Orleans, the tap water tastes like it might have baboon dung in it, but I use a Brita pitcher, so I think I'm good.

        Not picking on New Orleans. Most every place I've ever lived that wasn't mountainous had icky tasting tap water.
        "Right is right, even if no one is doing it; wrong is wrong, even if everyone is doing it." - St. Augustine

        B*tch-lite

        Who says back fat is a bad thing? Maybe on a hairy guy at the beach, but not on a crab.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by JoanieL View Post
          Here in New Orleans, the tap water tastes like it might have baboon dung in it ...
          Why, ma'am, that there's alligator dung. A lot of folks like it -- puts hair on your chest.

          Comment


          • #6
            Lewis, what gives me away as a skeptic?

            I looked into their methods - they do smoke the bees (which makes sense of course). I imagine the whole thing works out like this: Facing angry bees 40 metres high and unattached for honey - Human Planet: Jungles, preview - BBC One - YouTube

            Honey gathering is a man's job, probably because it's hazardous and men are biologically expendable.

            I can believe in their utilization of birds, as symbiosis is a recurring thing in nature (note dogs, cats). I don't have any evidence, though (nor do I of life on other planets, but I can believe that too).

            As for wild fruits, this was a pretty good plug for some that aren't the tiny, bitter ones we've come to accept: Wild and Ancient Fruit: Is it Really Small, Bitter, and Low in Sugar? | Raw Food SOS

            M.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by MEversbergII View Post
              Lewis, what gives me away as a skeptic?
              Your reply to the thread on Professor Kyriacos Markides. IIRC, you posted: "what's wrong with the paradigm?" This was in the context of Markides' having been reported as considering that he had been socialised into a materialist viewpoint by what's (broadly speaking) currently acceptable/assumed in academia, while considering that experiences he has had in his fieldwork undermine that view.

              I looked into their methods - they do smoke the bees (which makes sense of course). I imagine the whole thing works out like this: Facing angry bees 40 metres high and unattached for honey - Human Planet: Jungles, preview - BBC One - YouTube
              Thanks! It's a nice piece of video. However, this is the Bayaka:

              Bayaka - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

              not the Hadza. AFAIK, the Hadza's country is a mixture of open grassland and woodland. The Bayaka are living in jungle. Still, doubtless there are some similarities in the honey-gathering.

              I can believe in their utilization of birds, as symbiosis is a recurring thing in nature (note dogs, cats). I don't have any evidence, though (nor do I of life on other planets, but I can believe that too).
              I don't find that at all difficult to believe. One can even train birds -- hence, hawking. I can credit that the honey guide bird and the ratel cooperate, too.

              What I found stretched my credibility was Laurens van der Post's claim that all three would cooperate together. A three-way cooperation sounds like a pretty complex business, and I'm not, further, sure that each of the three would have a specific role than neither of the others could do. I think there are questions against Sir Laurens, and that sometimes he may have stretched the truth for the sake of literary impact. He's certainly been accused of it. I think that perhaps it may be possible, but I'd want to see an account from someone else confirming it.

              I did just try googling: bushmen ratel

              I found this:

              Sometimes they were helped, however, by the honey bird, a creature that came fluttering over them excitedly, eager to lead them to where some bees had made their home in a tree or in some rocks. ‘Look, look, o person with wings!’ they would cry, ‘gathering my things and quickly I come!’ Then they followed the bird and made a fire outside the bee’s nest to make them drowsy – for the African bee is the most vicious and aggressive of all bees in the world – then they’d take out the honey and share it with their friend. The honey bird, incidentally, would enlist the help of any human but not if it could find its friend, the ratel, first The ratel was a kind of badger with a thick skin immune to the stings of bees. But its nose and eyes were still vulnerable and, as it didn’t know how to make fire, it would instead stick its behind inside the nest and release a smell so powerful that the bees would drop to the ground, helpless to prevent the theft of their honey.
              The Story of the Bushmen of the Kalahari | The Storyteller Tom Thumb and his Stories

              That's only an internet search, and I don't know the status or reliability of the site that comes from. But, FWIW, the implication there is that the bird would cooperate with men or with a ratel. There's no suggestion of a three-way cooperation.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Lewis View Post
                Your reply to the thread on Professor Kyriacos Markides. IIRC, you posted: "what's wrong with the paradigm?" This was in the context of Markides' having been reported as considering that he had been socialised into a materialist viewpoint by what's (broadly speaking) currently acceptable/assumed in academia, while considering that experiences he has had in his fieldwork undermine that view.
                Hm. May have been in Zombie mode. I don't recall that at all. In fact, that sounds like something that would be far and away over my head.

                M.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by MEversbergII View Post
                  I don't recall that at all.
                  It was here:

                  http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread110977.html

                  You said:

                  What's wrong with paradigm? It's spiritual healing that's the fruity part.
                  By "What's wrong with paradigm?" I took you to mean: "I see nothing wrong with the (materialist) paradigm." And by "It's spiritual healing that's the fruity part" I thought you meant that people who believe in "spiritual healing" are, as they say round here, nutty as fruit cakes.

                  Maybe I misunderstood you.

                  According to Markides, around a third of Americans report having experienced some kind of "paranormal" experience. I suppose some of this is illusion; I doubt it all is. And I guess that anyone who has had that kind of experience, and really is convinced of its veracity, is not going to be impressed by "materialist" viewpoints. They are socially powerful, though. So much so that people who have had those types of experience tend not to talk about it, not wishing to be laughed at or dismissed as crackpots. And yet when you really start to think about it, you realise that the dominant view in the social sciences -- the "materialist" one -- really is nothing more than a set of assumptions. People are seeing their assumptions reflected back at them from the world, because they bring them with them and read them into it.

                  The area interests me, up to a certain point, for a number of reasons. I think it also has a few points of intersection with the "ancestral health" world.

                  Here's one: Once you start looking into what anthropological subjects believe you find they take as read all kinds of things that anthropologists would dismiss. But who's right? I daresay there's a fair amount of superstition, ignorance -- and trickery -- on the part of the subjects. But that there's nothing in their beliefs, and their interpretation of their experiences, is … well, nothing more than an assumption. For example, Sandy Gall in his book on the Bushmen records that when first meeting a Westerner who'd come to help them, a Bushman said, "You've finally come. We've been waiting for you."

                  http://www.amazon.com/Bushmen-Southe...dp/B003WQAP2W/

                  Would you, definitively, like to say that they hadn't had some premonition there?

                  Here's another: There's a definite interest, that usually goes unremarked, in corners of the ancestral health movement in people who are outside "the paradigm". This is particularly noticeable with the Weston A. Price Foundation. Two interesting searches:

                  https://www.google.co.uk/search?clie...gBg&gws_rd=ssl

                  About 35 results (0.28 seconds)
                  And

                  https://www.google.co.uk/search?clie...wCQ&gws_rd=ssl

                  About 19 results (0.48 seconds)

                  I'm not recommending either Steiner or Cayce myself -- just pointing out that it's worth noting that there's a definite interest at the WAPF in people who don't fit in with the mainstream and its prevailing assumptions. But I don't think that's necessarily a bad thing -- rather the opposite on the whole.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    By "What's wrong with paradigm?" I took you to mean: "I see nothing wrong with the (materialist) paradigm." And by "It's spiritual healing that's the fruity part" I thought you meant that people who believe in "spiritual healing" are, as they say round here, nutty as fruit cakes.

                    Maybe I misunderstood you.
                    Oh, I was wondering why you were apologizing with using the word paradigm. You are right, though, I am a materialist. I had a friend once who tried to talk to me about seeing ghosts years back. I listened, but I keep my distance these days. You are spot on, though, in that I think it's fruity.

                    The rest - don't know anything about that.

                    M.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by MEversbergII View Post
                      Oh, I was wondering why you were apologizing with using the word paradigm.
                      That was mainly because "paradigm" itself is an over-worked term, and tends to drag a lot of assumptions in its wake.

                      You are right, though, I am a materialist. I had a friend once who tried to talk to me about seeing ghosts years back. I listened, but I keep my distance these days. You are spot on, though, in that I think it's fruity.
                      I know what you mean.

                      I think most "sightings" are probably bogus. Whether they all are though ...

                      I guess people just have to make up their minds as to what they believe possible -- but the notion that one could find a definitive proof one way or the other seems simpleminded to me. It's a matter of how the world seems to you.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by MEversbergII View Post
                        Lewis, what gives me away as a skeptic?

                        I looked into their methods - they do smoke the bees (which makes sense of course). I imagine the whole thing works out like this: Facing angry bees 40 metres high and unattached for honey - Human Planet: Jungles, preview - BBC One - YouTube

                        Honey gathering is a man's job, probably because it's hazardous and men are biologically expendable.
                        I saw that episode and what cracked me up was the toddler eating handfuls of comb and honey while matter-of-factly swatting the bees away.
                        Late 50s, post-menopausal, low carb with some dairy, following the 5 Leptin Rules, taking ThyroGold, eating lots o' fiber and zero wheat with great results. My Primal Journal

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