Author Topic: Evolution and Instinctive Nutrition  (Read 4893 times)

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Offline FruitAndVegLover

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Evolution and Instinctive Nutrition
« on: June 10, 2014, 08:43:37 pm »
New to this forum but not instincto!  Been eating Instinctively for one year now!!!!   I was reading this forum and realized I have always had some questions

What part of our evolutionary history shaped our nutritional needs ?  If  humans started there evolution in the rainforest would they still instinctively want these fruits and leaves and stalks from there?  Or have we evolved away from that?  I found it astounding that humans are the only species that utilizes foods from all over the world and I just wondering if thats good for us.    Every other animal follows a specific seasonal diet according to the location of where they live.  I guess mostly what I am wondering is why I crave the foods I do.   I am a female of European descent from the United States...  I have never instinctively chosen foods from South America or North America.... I dont like Apples, Or tomatoes or Avocados.   Basically all the foods I eat are from Asia and the Mediterranean with a heavy bearing on Citrus and Greens.   Could this be where a major change in the Human diet and where a shift in intelligence happened???   My ancestors just randomly stumbled onto a lemon patch and now i need them????  Explain how we come to naturally crave certain foods that are good for us............ and what about Africa???  What about our long evolutionary past there?  Are we not missing the native African plants and fruits we evolved with,  or do they not even exist anymore?     Did the increase in nutritional value of our new fruits and vegetables shape our brain?   I wonder why I eat the things I do and dont revert back to eating like an ape.    How do i  come to crave and need lemons and cantaloupe in my diet instead of frickin figs and termites?  Whats the difference?    I wanna know a true diet with actual foods that changed us and benefited us from our past... Is that so hard!!!???

~Emily

Offline nummi

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Re: Evolution and Instinctive Nutrition
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2014, 12:11:53 am »
I would recommend watching two 2 hour long movies provided there: http://www.rawpaleodietforum.com/hot-topics/a-video-about-neanderthals-'big-foots'-and-others-and-our-relation-to-them/msg122727/?topicseen#msg122727
And then there's provided a shorter video, in the third post, 8 minutes long that goes over something fundamental in some more detail.
The movies will answer who we are, where we came from, and why we are here. Or rather what we originally were.

About water: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hQ5qPbdxbv8 (Has, I think, Polish subs but other convenient versions have been removed from youtube, except those split into many pieces merely to annoy people.)

This is not a vegan or vegetarian forum. Meat has usually utmost emphasis here (and fats and organs).
Meat is and has been a "natural" part of our diet for "forever" (which apparently isn't that long...), and who we were made of, and it is absolutely essential to anyone who cares about true health. But people differ, and so differs how much someone needs. The problems come when you cook it or you eat meat from sick and maltreated animals. Basically, bluntly, meat you eat should come from animals that lived a happy and as natural as possible life (this is made ever harder, on purpose).

Trying to explain why you "crave" something specific we first need to know more about you, what your diet has been throughout your life. What pills and drugs you have been subjected to. Your physical activities and training. Lifestyles. Where you've been, what you've experienced. Everything really, because everything effects who you are.
So, easier instead is making you see yourself, your past, and possible futures, and the world you live in. So you could make the right decisions and choices on your own, with your own mind. Everyone experiences differently, and words are not accurate - this is why.

Online TylerDurden

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Re: Evolution and Instinctive Nutrition
« Reply #2 on: June 11, 2014, 12:18:27 am »
There is more and more evidence that the majority of us humans are descended from apemen ancestors who spent millions of years far away from Africa. So, some of us may not even be adapted to African foods. Indeed, some, like me, find tropical fruits to be a problem re food-intolerance, for example.
Any man can make mistakes, but only an idiot persists in his error. Marcus Tullius Cicero

Offline Iguana

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Re: Evolution and Instinctive Nutrition
« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2014, 12:52:46 am »
Welcome, Emily. 
Our cravings are formed by memory of previous experiences — or worse experiences with the cooked foodstuff and when on standard cooked diet — and since our needs change over time, cravings don’t necessarily reflect our current needs. We shouldn’t rely on them, but rather on our senses of smell and taste.
Cause and effect are distant in time and space in complex systems, while at the same time there’s a tendency to look for causes near the events sought to be explained. Time delays in feedback in systems result in the condition where the long-run response of a system to an action is often different from its short-run response. — Ronald J. Ziegler

Offline CatTreats

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Re: Evolution and Instinctive Nutrition
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2014, 06:06:57 am »
I agree about the cravings. I do think that sometimes cravings are accurate, but you can't always rely on them because most (if not all) of us came from a tainted diet prior to RPD. When I crave a cooked steak (still happens), I know that it's not because I want raw beef, it's the SAD person inside still wanting to eat cooked food. But there are times where I'm like "wow I really want raw salmon" and when I finally get it, it's DELICIOUS. Also exclusively with meat, if I talk or think about something I'm craving, I will salivate like crazy. Only happens when it comes to raw meat, never plant foods or cooked foods. There was a time that I was talking to a customer at work about how delicious raw duck is and how much I wanted it. I actually had saliva come out of my mouth mid-sentence. Embarrassing at first, but I was able to explain how badly I wanted it and she thought it was cool. If I look at pictures of the raw meat I'm craving (usually the night before we're going to be able to go out and get some), I will be drooling and ravenous. It's better than watching the Food Network.
In its purest, unaltered form, healthy food is delicious.

Offline FruitAndVegLover

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Re: Evolution and Instinctive Nutrition
« Reply #5 on: June 12, 2014, 07:01:45 am »
its hard for me to even explain my qestions in the right terms

I think what Im wondering is what period of time are are instincts adapted to and how to eat the actual foods that are 100 percent best for us.

and how these foods from all over the world that we never had access to can be good or even better for us?  My ancestors never ate avocados so how could they be
good for me? and why would i instinctively want them ???etc....    A person would instinctively crave foods from africa and other parts of his or her past wouldnt they!?



Our evolution happpened mostly in ancient Africa and then we spread out!!! so whats foods would our instincts drive us towards???
do they same plants and fruits, etc.. even exist today that our ancestors would have been eating?  I sometimes bite into.. say a melon and wonder...Is this really a food that my body needs and was available to my ancestors or am i just trying to replicate some fruit that I have never tried because its not mass produced and/or isnt  available to me...and Is it just as healthy to get your vitamins and nutrition from some modern day fruit as it would be from some native african fruit you dont access to????   

whats the difference between me getting my nutrition from an ancient fruit or a modern day lemon or something?   


I feel like Im  not on the right path when i can only instinctively eat foods available to be in north america...   im missing foods from parts of my evolutionary history that my body wants!   I need to travel around the world and select the best foods for my body or something!


or maybe my thoughts on evolution our misguided

Offline Iguana

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Re: Evolution and Instinctive Nutrition
« Reply #6 on: June 12, 2014, 02:24:01 pm »
Good questions that we’ve all been wondering about. It seems no definitive answers can be found from theoretical considerations based on our current very limited and uncertain anthropological knowledge: only long and thorough experiments have given empirical, provisional and partial answers.

I think this has already been extensively discussed on several threads, see GCB’s posts amongst others.

Anyway, traveling around the world is an excellent idea and great experience.  :)   
Cause and effect are distant in time and space in complex systems, while at the same time there’s a tendency to look for causes near the events sought to be explained. Time delays in feedback in systems result in the condition where the long-run response of a system to an action is often different from its short-run response. — Ronald J. Ziegler

Offline CatTreats

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Re: Evolution and Instinctive Nutrition
« Reply #7 on: June 13, 2014, 02:05:48 am »
My ancestors never ate avocados so how could they be
good for me? and why would i instinctively want them ???etc....    A person would instinctively crave foods from africa and other parts of his or her past wouldnt they!?

This is my idea of it. We need certain nutrients, and will instinctively crave them. When you introduce a food that has these nutrients, the body remembers them. So if your ancestors never ate avocado, but you eat one and there is no adverse reaction and you obtain nutrients for it, avocado will be added in as an option for the nutrients it contains. I don't think you can crave something you have never had, or at least not specifically. I've never craved say, liver, until I actually began to eat it.

Our evolution happpened mostly in ancient Africa and then we spread out!!! so whats foods would our instincts drive us towards???

To my understanding, we left Africa and inhabited different parts of the world long ago, so there would be time for us to adapt and change. I believe one of the reasons some people do well on a ZC diet versus people who absolutely need to be omnivorous, is due to this. I'm not one to use the "gene card" but that's usually where I would.

do they same plants and fruits, etc.. even exist today that our ancestors would have been eating?  I sometimes bite into.. say a melon and wonder...Is this really a food that my body needs and was available to my ancestors or am i just trying to replicate some fruit that I have never tried because its not mass produced and/or isnt  available to me...and Is it just as healthy to get your vitamins and nutrition from some modern day fruit as it would be from some native african fruit you dont access to????

The answer would be no. Apples of today are nothing like apples from long ago. Almost all fruits have been selectively bred (domesticated) to be larger and sweeter, and in the process (not surprisingly), they have lower nutrient content. 

whats the difference between me getting my nutrition from an ancient fruit or a modern day lemon or something?

The difference is that domesticated fruits straight up do not have the same nutritional value. The same thing has happened with our produce as our meat - we've domesticated the species and turned them into an unnatural substance. Not as bad as GMO's or grain-fed meats, but domesticated produce and meats are all inferior to their wild ancestors.

I feel like Im  not on the right path when i can only instinctively eat foods available to be in north america...   im missing foods from parts of my evolutionary history that my body wants!   I need to travel around the world and select the best foods for my body or something!

Then do that. :)
In its purest, unaltered form, healthy food is delicious.

Offline FruitAndVegLover

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Re: Evolution and Instinctive Nutrition
« Reply #8 on: June 13, 2014, 08:53:28 pm »
but lets the say the food is 100 percent wild and in its natural unaltered


Just for example... Say my body has a hard wired memory and instinctively would crave figs and an edible wild grass from tropical africa or asia/

But Me being only able to eat what i know hear around me in the US eat peaches and celery.  Say somehow the both contain similar nutrients my boyd needs?
Does it matter?

\how does a chimp react when on a captive diet in the zoo?   do they thrive on all these unfamiliar fruits and heads of lettuce ,etcc

My thought process is.. humans being so advanced and intelligent can eat anything they from any part of the word.  Maybe this is to our benefit?.  but does it
fit you past and your bodys natural chemistry?



Offline eveheart

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Re: Evolution and Instinctive Nutrition
« Reply #9 on: June 14, 2014, 01:34:19 am »
If mankind could not adapt fairly well to local food sources, how do you explain human migration to all climates? Which elements in one food do you think are found exclusively in that one food alone?
"I intend to live forever; so far, so good." -Steven Wright, comedian

Offline PaleoPhil

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Re: Evolution and Instinctive Nutrition
« Reply #10 on: June 14, 2014, 02:26:32 am »
Interestingly enough, it turns out  that even Neanderthals ate dates, which are a tropical palm fruit (coconut is another well-known palm fruit, and palm hearts/ubod are another palm food):

Quote
The Real Caveman Diet: Did people eat fruits and vegetables in prehistoric times?
By Brian Palmer

 
"paleoanthropologists found bits of date stuck in the teeth of a 40,000-year-old Neanderthal"
>"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

Offline colorles

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Re: Evolution and Instinctive Nutrition
« Reply #11 on: June 15, 2014, 04:09:53 am »
fact of the matter is, there is no one diet that will perfectly suit every different kind of person on this planet. we have all been evolving separately at different corners of the world, for a very long time now. the diet and way of life fitting to an Inuit, would not be fitting to a Khmer, and visa versa. while some people in this world do very well on chronically very low carb diets, some do not. in fact some populations seem to live well on much higher chronic carb consumption. and still many more people are somewhere in between

it really just depends on your ancestry, and in the western world anyways where the lot of us can go to the supermarket and pick up an global variety of foods (for better or for worse), your own self experimentation on what you can and cannot handle for starters, and eventually what you thrive on over the long run. humans are quite adaptable, there is no doubt that regional adaptation to diet has occurred just like it has with race and everything else genetic. for that matter we wouldn't be the only mammalian species to show such adaptations to diet, i mean look at the polar bear compared to the brown bear: polar bear eats a primarily carnivorous chronic VLC diet, while the brown bear eats a diet primarily consisting of fruits supplemented by whatever else it can find. both of these bear subspecies ("subspecies" being analogous to "race") can produce fertile offspring together, so they are the same species (just regionally adapted "races" of the same species if you will), but they both have rather healthily adapted to rather differing diets. wolves are much the same, showing regional adaptations ie subspecies, each eating the food they can hunt of find in their respective parts of the world. which is usually any animal they can take down, but as anybody that is familiar with canids will tell you, they are nothing if not opportunists

if i recall there was even an experiment once transplanting a carnivorous lizard, to an isolated island, and in just a few generations the lizard was already showing intestinal adaptations to a primarily herbivorous diet (i'l see if i can find the study). granted the transition was likely not smooth at first...but the point is, is that an hardy creature will adapt to any new environment and its dietary challenges it finds itself in, and if it can't it either A) dies out, or B) returns to whence it came (the option us humans likely face with large scale SAD diet if i may say, given there is a ratio between "positive adaptations to any new food source" and "the negative side effects of any new food source", and when it comes to the modern processed diets, humans are on the loosing end of that relationship). and the fact of the matter is over the many thousands (if not millions of years given some other theories) of years, various human populations at various corners of the world and everywhere in between, have been adapting to their environments and everything that comes with it

what does this mean? does this mean not to eat avocados if you are not from the americas? or any other given set of food/region of origin scenario? well, in the world we live in today its a bit more complicated than that. and when it comes to instincto and "what you are craving", well if you were living in your native part of the world you would instinctively crave only your native foods. you can see, how it would be a bit more complicated in todays world...

to put it simply, you just have to keep your ancestry in mind to give yourself a starting point, and then just experiment from there. and don't be afraid to ask questions and share your experiences, either here or with your family
« Last Edit: June 15, 2014, 04:18:36 am by colorles »

Offline Iguana

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Re: Evolution and Instinctive Nutrition
« Reply #12 on: June 15, 2014, 04:44:39 pm »
and when it comes to instincto and "what you are craving", well if you were living in your native part of the world you would instinctively crave only your native foods. you can see, how it would be a bit more complicated in todays world...

Once and for all, « instincto » is not about eating « what you’re craving ». It may coincide, but not necessarily and not always.
« Last Edit: June 15, 2014, 04:56:44 pm by Iguana »
Cause and effect are distant in time and space in complex systems, while at the same time there’s a tendency to look for causes near the events sought to be explained. Time delays in feedback in systems result in the condition where the long-run response of a system to an action is often different from its short-run response. — Ronald J. Ziegler

Offline FruitAndVegLover

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Re: Evolution and Instinctive Nutrition
« Reply #13 on: June 16, 2014, 05:50:46 am »
so we had a certain diet of foods that we knew ....   but how does something like a coconut (which I loveeeeee .... benefit me if my ancestors never had access to coconuts?   )   I sound stupid saying this but its hard to explain..  Is consuming new foods that u like good for u?   Say for example I was an ancient ancestor of humans eating a chimp like diet... then i discovered new foods!  how does this benefit me and does my body have to adapt to this?   how have we evolved away from eating termites, figs and ligs?

Offline PaleoPhil

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Re: Evolution and Instinctive Nutrition
« Reply #14 on: June 16, 2014, 08:40:59 am »
so we had a certain diet of foods that we knew ....   but how does something like a coconut (which I loveeeeee .... benefit me if my ancestors never had access to coconuts?   )   I sound stupid saying this but its hard to explain..  Is consuming new foods that u like good for u?   Say for example I was an ancient ancestor of humans eating a chimp like diet... then i discovered new foods!  how does this benefit me and does my body have to adapt to this?   how have we evolved away from eating termites, figs and ligs?
Maybe coconuts are similar to some of the foods of the past? For example, fig palms and coconut palms are both palm fruits (technically, one is a multiple fruit with drupelets and the other is a drupe), so maybe there are some similarities (along with differences--coconuts have more fat and less carbs than figs), and maybe some of them haven't even been figured out yet? If you want to know then why not look for what the various apemen ancestors (pre-agrarian Homo sapiens sapiens, archaic Homo sapiens, Homo sapiens neanderthalensis, Homo erectus, H. ergaster, H. habilis, ...) ate (and we modern H. sapiens sapiens are apemen too, of course). You could also look for what the healthiest peoples in the world today eat (the blue zone survey provides some info on this). Recently, I found the evidence on Neanderthal fig consumption and Tyler found the evidence on Neanderthal wild grain consumption; maybe you'll find more? Have you searched at all yet? If so, what have you found so far?

Figs are one of the clearest foods of all, as H. sapiens sapiens, Neanderthals and wild chimps all ate them.
« Last Edit: June 16, 2014, 08:47:21 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

Offline PaleoPhil

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Re: Evolution and Instinctive Nutrition
« Reply #15 on: April 20, 2015, 06:25:38 am »
Two things stand out from this article about chimp diets – food species diversity and figs:

Quote
“1-Diversity—In Kibale chimpanzees were found to have consumed no fewer than 102 species (and perhaps many more) of plants either in the form of fruit or leaves. How many species are in your fridge? I did a quick count and found fewer than fifty plant species in my entire local farmer’s market.

2-FigsNearly half of all of the food consumed by chimps appears to be one or another kind of figs, fruits of the Ficus trees. Fig trees produce delicious, nutritious fruits in large numbers. Chimps are not the only animals to eat figs. Fruit bats love figs, as do many birds and as do the other apes. When living in the same region, gorillas eat fewer figs than chimps, but gorillas do eat figs, as do orangutans. The majority of the carbon atoms in the average American have been said to come from corn; it is possible more than half of the carbon atoms in chimps come from figs.

...

8-More figs—OK, there were only seven things. But figs, I’ll reiterate, are everywhere in the life of chimps, bonobos and other apes. Figs. Figs. Figs. We tend to think of the megafauna as being the group of species that shaped humanity, but it seems as reasonable to postulate we were shaped by figs. Like the fruits themselves, we grew out of their trees.”

http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/2012/08/02/how-to-eat-like-a-chimpanzee
>"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

Offline JeuneKoq

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Re: Evolution and Instinctive Nutrition
« Reply #16 on: April 20, 2015, 06:51:52 am »
There's no fresh figs in Belgian shops at the moment, but I do eat them dried when I have sweet cravings, so I don't get tempted to eat the chocolate and cookies that are in the next drawer (still live with the rest of my family). They taste and feel better anyways.

I used to work in an organic shop, and when available fresh figs were basically the only thing I snacked on . I chose those that were the ripest, and if it wasn't for the price I think I would've ate them by the kilo(s).

Offline PaleoPhil

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Re: Evolution and Instinctive Nutrition
« Reply #17 on: April 20, 2015, 07:38:23 am »
Yeah, fresh figs are definitely the tastiest.
>"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