Author Topic: Neanderthals ate cooked grains, veggies and meat  (Read 4918 times)

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Offline ForTheHunt

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Take everyones advice with a grain of salt. Try things out for your self and then make up your mind.

Offline yuli

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Re: Neanderthals ate cooked grains, veggies and meat
« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2010, 08:18:43 am »
I though it was already known that Neanderthals cooked a bit of grains (since you can't eat them raw at all and I don't think they sprouted)...
But still the amount of grains they ate was just what they could gather, they didn't have bowls of rice, pasta and loaves of bread thats for sure.
If you eat about a tablespoon of black rice every other day you will probably not suffer much ill health, but its not necessary...
I think they ate them because they ate whatever they could, it was tough times back then.

Offline Stancel

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Re: Neanderthals ate cooked grains, veggies and meat
« Reply #2 on: December 28, 2010, 08:29:22 am »
It says they found "grains of plant material". It doesn't sound like they mean "grains" in that way, more like "grain" as in a small piece of something.

I always wondered about cooking methods. I doubt they would have a saute pan ready to make stir fry. No ovens, no pots. I've heard theories of turtle shells and other such things being used as cooking pots.

Offline TylerDurden

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Re: Neanderthals ate cooked grains, veggies and meat
« Reply #3 on: December 28, 2010, 09:48:24 am »
There is real evidence of prejudice in that article(eg:-" This study is the latest to suggest that, far from being brutish savages, Neanderthals were more like us than we previously thought. "

The implication above is that eating raw or eating mostly meats somehow makes one a brutish savage.

As for the stuff re Neanderthals eating cooked foods, that was already known well before this study, as they appeared after cooking was invented. The notion re meats in their diet is more complicated:- the Neanderthals lived in both Europe and the Middle-East, so different Neanderthal populations lived in entirely different climates with different kinds of foods available etc. - most likely, therefore, the more northern-living Neanderthals ate more meats than those in the Middle-East.

What is, of course, wholly dishonest in the above article is that they falsely assume that since Neanderthals cooked some of their plant foods, that they must have cooked all their meats as well. Yet, many hunter-gatherers until recently ate some raw animal foods(according to Weston-Price, the healthiest tribes would do so as a routine) - so Neanderthals are highly likely to have done the same.
« Last Edit: December 28, 2010, 10:10:59 am by TylerDurden »
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Offline Stancel

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Re: Neanderthals ate cooked grains, veggies and meat
« Reply #4 on: December 28, 2010, 10:11:21 am »
Well, there have been worse articles about the Neanderthals, Tyler.

^aside from the seemingly fictional history (written by a former filmmaker, no less), the picture looks very unrealistic.

Offline sabertooth

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Re: Neanderthals ate cooked grains, veggies and meat
« Reply #5 on: December 28, 2010, 10:11:42 am »
They may have just seared chunks of meat to thaw it out in the winter. I doubt they ever ate things well done, even if they did roast some of their meat on an open fire.  
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Offline TylerDurden

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Re: Neanderthals ate cooked grains, veggies and meat
« Reply #6 on: December 28, 2010, 10:44:17 am »
Well, there have been worse articles about the Neanderthals, Tyler.

^aside from the seemingly fictional history (written by a former filmmaker, no less), the picture looks very unrealistic.
That other Neanderthal theory has been largely debunked by current scientific research. I think it was covered in a past thread somewhere?
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Offline riy freeman

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Re: Neanderthals ate cooked grains, veggies and meat
« Reply #7 on: December 29, 2010, 07:54:14 am »
I don't think the article implied eating meats meant savagery at all. I think the savage imagery comes from the club wielding, caveman archetype.

Also the article's focus was not to state that cooked meats were not consumed. It was focusing on vegetables/ plant matter.

Offline PaleoPhil

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Re: Neanderthals ate cooked grains, veggies and meat
« Reply #8 on: January 01, 2011, 06:57:12 am »
I stumbled on a source that confirms that the grains consumed at one of the Neanderthal sites were cereals, but as TD pointed out, this is old news that was already reported in earlier finds, the site with grains was in Iraq, which is one of the earliest regions on the planet for grain eating, whereas grains did not become important in most of Europe and Asia until much later, and just because some Neanderthalers ate some grains doesn't guarantee that grains are good for us. For all we know, those grains could have been detrimental to the health of those Neanderthalers and one blogger even posted a tongue-in-cheek hypothesis that grains could have caused the extinction of the Neanderthals to point out the absurdity of extrapolating too much from this single data point. Here's an excerpt from the source:

"a new report published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of the Sciences (found here) found grain residues in the teeth of Neanderthals in Belgium and Iraq who are believed to have lived 36-46,000 years ago.

At the Iraq site, they found evidence of the consumption of 73 starch grains. Ten were members of the Triticeae tribe that includes wheat, barley, and rye, and most likely close relatives of barley. Fifteen appeared to be members of the Triticeae tribe that had been cooked with moist heat. They also found sixteen dental residues of different species of the fruits of the date palm, and four other unidentified tree fruit residues. The 136 dental starch residues at the Belgium site were more difficult to identify, but they included sorghum relatives.

The authors noted that the finding of starchy plant food consumption does not contradict isotope data, which can only detect meat and protein-rich plant foods. In other words, the types of evidence do not overlap enough to determine proportions of different food groups with any confidence."
(http://www.cholesterol-and-health.com/Paul-Shou-Ching-Jaminet-Perfect-Health-Diet-Review.html)

There is real evidence of prejudice in that article(eg:-" This study is the latest to suggest that, far from being brutish savages, Neanderthals were more like us than we previously thought. "
It is nice to see additional confirmation of my earlier point that some of the past opinions and extrapolations of scientists that Neanderthals were mere brutish savages incapable of culture, religion or even complex thought, were excessively negative. You may not like the term "demonization," call it whatever you like, I do think some scientists went overboard, particularly early on after the first discoveries of Neanderthals.

I acknowledged from the beginning that Neanderthals engaged in cannibalism and I even predicted that more evidence of Neanderthal cannibalism would be found, I just think that some of those early scientists exaggerated and extrapolated this into painting a picture of dumb brutes who engaged in extreme levels of cannibalism because they were crazed with bloodlust and violent emotions (and didn't focus as much on other less emotional or sensational potential reasons for the evidence at various sites like human brains and organs being high quality food sources that can be scarce at times or simply preferred to other food options, starvation, ritual consumption of some of the flesh and thereby spirit of a loved one or of the spirit of an enemy, or multipart burial that may or may not have included ritual post-mortem cannibalism) in order to show how we humans have progressed by becoming more "civilized" since and how history is a story of endless progress and utopian perfecting of humans, with the single utopian society for all being a "shining city on a hill" instead of a diversity of cultures matched to their local habitats.

Quote
The implication above is that eating raw or eating mostly meats somehow makes one a brutish savage. ....
Get used to it. Many people do seem to think we're brutish savages, Paleo re-enactors or fond of Noble Savage notions just because we eat raw meats and refer to our approach as a "Paleo diet". The same sort of "demonization" or negative stereotyping or whatever you want to call it that has been used against the Neanderthals is being used against us and will continue to be used against us.
« Last Edit: January 01, 2011, 07:03:25 am by PaleoPhil »
>"When some one eats an Epi paleo Rx template and follows the rules of circadian biology they get plenty of starches when they are available three out of the four seasons." -Jack Kruse, MD
>"I recommend 20 percent of calories from carbs, depending on the size of the person" -Ron Rosedale, MD (in other words, NOT zero carbs) http://preview.tinyurl.com/6ogtan
>Finding a diet you can tolerate is not the same as fixing what's wrong. -Tim Steele
Beware of problems from chronic Very Low Carb

 

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