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Thread: Interesting article ~ 'We’ve Adapted to Foods not on the Paleo Diet' page

  1. #1
    Aingealag's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Interesting article ~ 'We’ve Adapted to Foods not on the Paleo Diet'

    I found this interesting, sensible and thought provoking. Being from the Netherlands, I guess there is a case for me allowing a bit of healthy, organic dairy back into my life...

    We’ve Adapted to Foods not on the Paleo Diet

    I'm only a beginner at this, would love to know what the Paleo/Primal veterans think of this.

    Cheers,

    Wendy

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    Ancient man did not eat a lot of potatoes. They may have been consumed more by man living on the ancient African continent, but were not likely to be growing or eaten in other regions.
    Bad research. Potatoes are native to the Americas.

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    Humans originally ate fruit, plants, and insects. At some point, they began scavenging carcasses of animals killed by other animals. These early humans ate the bone marrow from bones (high in DHA) and brains from skulls because this was all that was left over after other animals had eaten the animal. After the introduction of this new food, our brains grew in size and we became much smarter and eventually began hunting large animals
    Are we talking about actual Homo sapiens here? Because no. We were plant and bug eaters a long long long long time ago. We started cracking into marrow bones long before we became "human".

    Food sensitivities affect roughly 75% 0f the population, but some of this is due to health conditions and leaky gut or allergies
    Is this how the author supports the statement that we've adapted to new foods?

    Then there’s the science of epigenetics. Genes are turned on and off according to diet and lifestyle. For this reason, it is absurd to suggest the epigenome of modern humans is identical to that of our Paleolithic ancestors given the substantial changes in environment and food that have occurred since that era.
    Genes turn on and off constantly through out lives. Just because I don't live a bajillion years ago doesn't mean I throw up my hands and say "my genes will never be like theirs." They won't, it's true but what about all the people with autoimmune diseases etc who do better on paleo? Something in them has changed.

    It's weird, how have we adjusted when the whole articles talks about milk, grains, legumes, etc, and gives percentages of the population who aren't adjusted to them. It sounds like someone is trying to go for the "everything in moderation" argument

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    Dairy is the <3.

    But, yes, it appears that we do have some adaptations. However, grains are still junk food.

    M.

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    Lady D's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaveBug View Post
    It's weird, how have we adjusted when the whole articles talks about milk, grains, legumes, etc, and gives percentages of the population who aren't adjusted to them. It sounds like someone is trying to go for the "everything in moderation" argument
    Exactly.

    I have a problem with this bit:

    "At some point, they began scavenging carcasses of animals killed by other animals. These early humans ate the bone marrow from bones (high in DHA) and brains from skulls because this was all that was left over after other animals had eaten the animal. After the introduction of this new food, our brains grew in size and we became much smarter and eventually began hunting large animals."

    Dogs and therefore presumably wolves, at least, also eat marrow - do we need to tool-up just in case they start evolving quickfast, and take over the planet?! Humans toiling 18 hours a day in giant chocolate factories, with the strongest among us perpetually enslaved into a lifetime of throwing sticks and bouncy rubber balls for our canine masters?

    I mean, really...

  6. #6
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    My dog's already there. He's a lot smarter than most humans I know. He does eat a lot of marrow along with me. Just sayin'.....

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    The article sorta sounds reasonable, but I do have to nitpick a few points:

    Quote Originally Posted by the article says
    A common argument is that we are not adapted to foods like dairy and grains that arrived upon the advent of agriculture about 10,000 years ago. The argument further unravels when we assume that a species isn’t adapted to a food because it’s never consumed it.
    Except that we don't assume that. Coconuts are much more recently 'introduced' to the human species than wheat is. The arguement against wheat isn't solely that it's neolithic. It's that it's toxic to us and we haven't adapted to it yet. Coconut isn't toxic to us, so no problem. The whole 'paleo' concept is just to get people used to the idea of what real food is (and the paleolithic foods are much more likely to be safe since we've been eating them for so long).

    Quote Originally Posted by the article said
    Food sources can be big drivers of evolution.
    Which is relevant when there is selective pressure which will increase the breeding/survival potential of the people who adapte to the new food. Whatever you want to say about metabolic symdrome and the diseases of modern civilisation, it's NOT that it prevents us from breeding. So modern foods *aren't* a big driver of evolution in the human species, since while they are bad for us they don't prevent us from eating.

    Quote Originally Posted by the article said
    As you can see there are a lot of factors at play that cause one to become intolerant of a food. You can’t just outline a diet and say,”This is the best diet.” This applies to the Paleo diet and any other diet. Due to the complex nature of genetics, environment, intestinal flora, food and our nutritional status, one must figure out the diet that best suits their needs, preferences, and tolerances at any given time.
    This bit (and the entire section by Chris Masterjohn) is completely and very right.

    Quote Originally Posted by the article wrote
    Then there’s the science of epigenetics. Genes are turned on and off according to diet and lifestyle. For this reason, it is absurd to suggest the epigenome of modern humans is identical to that of our Paleolithic ancestors given the substantial changes in environment and food that have occurred since that era. Epigenetic changes can happen relatively quickly. One such quick change is called lactase persistence or the ability to digest lactose into adulthood, which began about 8000 years ago. This is roughly 2,000 years after we began domesticating and milking animals.
    The author clearly doesn't understand what epigenetics is. It *seems* like they think it is a rapid fire form of fast-track evolution, where really, it's how your hormones turn parts of your genes on and off (that's an oversimplification, but that's what it means in the context of diet). You still pass the same genes on to your offspring regardless which of your gene sequences you activate in the course of your own life.

    Lactase Persistence is NOT an example of epigenetics. It's an example of *genetic* mutation that became dominant in selected areas where that mutation was selected for (the people who were able to matabolise milk had a survival advantage over the people who did not).

    Quote Originally Posted by the article said
    People who are adapted to grains are probably the minority.
    When we talk about being adapted to starches, there's genes which produce the enzyme amylase, and humans have a relatively recent mutation which causes us to produce much more amylase than relatives like the chimpanzee. So we are more adapted to eating starches than them. Similarly for dairy, a portion of the population has evolved lactase persistence. We can point our finger at a specific reason why people are adapted to starches and dairy.

    What does being 'adapted to grains' mean? What's the reason why 'probably the minority' of people are adapted to grains?

    Quote Originally Posted by what the article says about beans
    Here’s my opinion: If beans or legumes like lentils make you play your Scottish bagpipes, you don’t digest them well. Perhaps you shouldn’t eat them. Or maybe you need to prepare them by soaking and sprouting the beans. Traditional and tribal peoples never consumed legumes unless they were prepared properly.
    Agree 100%. I don't currently eat beans, but it's one of the things I'm kinda agnostic on rather than flat out banning like wheat.

    Quote Originally Posted by the article said
    Ancient man did not eat a lot of potatoes. They may have been consumed more by man living on the ancient African continent
    Lol. Potatoes are native to the americas. I agree with the article's point that just because it's a neolithic food doesn't mean that it's automatically bad.
    Last edited by magicmerl; 08-08-2013 at 07:35 PM.
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    Belforte's Avatar
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    Epigenetics is about a change in gene expression, it is not a change in the gene itself. Generally expressed as the gene turning on or off. The gene itself does not change.
    Life. Be in it.

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    Yeah, if it did that would be mutation.

    M.

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    I am with the respondents that question: Adapted to what? There is difference between beans and whole groats you soaked and boiled and commercial ever-soft wheat bread or non-melting ice-cream with a half-inch long list of additives. I do not think a human in general has to adapt to something that grows naturally, even if you have to cook it first to eat. The demarcation line where the human trifled too much with food is not clear to me. Hence I believe in self-experimentation .
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