Saturday, July 11, 2009

Paleolithic versus Neolithic

I’ve been thinking about the Paleo diet and how it makes a lot of sense. Hunter gatherers appear to have been a very healthy bunch of people. All that fresh meat and lots of exercise has got to be good for you. On the other side were the Neolithics building their little hamlets and farms, relying on staple products like grains for their main source of food. But their health deteriorated , their teeth fell out and their bones ached.

In the forest were the noble savages still living the same life they had for a million years. They were close to nature, part of nature, noble, glorious savages. They started with their primitive stone tools to be the dominant predator and a million years later they had progressed to slightly sharper stone tools. A million years and that was all they came up with! Yes, they were thick as two short planks.

Then emerged the neoliths, unhealthy maybe, a little crazy maybe, but smart, very smart. In a few thousand years they progressed from stone tools to nuclear power stations. They became the supreme predator. They transcended the animal condition. Is it possible that diet had something to do with it?

Studies have indicated that gluten may have a part to play in schizophrenia and bi-polar disorder. Great leaders and innovators have often been diagnosed with these conditions. Could this be a happy coincidence? Agriculture produced gluten which produced schizophrenia which produced innovation and development.

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