The subject of eating meat can be quite a polarizing subject with some people.  Vegans and Vegetarians may have their own moral and humanitarian reasons for avoiding animal products but they cannot ignore the overwhelming scientific facts of what our bodies require in order to be healthy.  Some of these essential requirements can only come from animal products.

Information on eating meat is continually coming out and being added to the already overwhelming evidence and research in the areas of human physiology, biochemistry, nutrition, and evolutionary biology that have been published showing how the consumption of animal products has helped to shape the modern human mind.  Our minds comprise 20 percent of the body’s energy consumption, two times the amount of other primates.  The reason that we were able to sustain the nutrient requirements of having a larger brain is because of eating meats.

A study published recently in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, did an examination of brain sizes of primates and found that larger bodies have larger brains across species, but humans have very large, neuron-rich brains for our body size, while gorillas, three times the mass of humans, have smaller brains with one third the neurons.  Scientists have shown that adding neurons to the primate brain comes at a fixed cost of approximately six calories per billion neurons.

This extra calories needed for gorillas to evolve a humanlike brain would require an additional 733 calories a day, which would require two more hours of feeding.  A gorilla already spends as much as 80 percent of the tropics daylight hours eating.

As for humans, if we were eating only raw vegetation, we would have needed to eat for more than nine hours a day in order to consume enough calories to evolve our brains.  Without the use of modern day refrigeration and growing techniques, that scenario is highly unlikely, especially when you add in the danger and other difficulties of gathering so much food in prehistoric times.

Our bodies require certain nutrients found in meat like iron, vitamins B9 and B12.  When we are deficient of these nutrients problems will develop.  A study published in October  2012 in PLoS ONE, examined the remains of a pre-human toddler who died from malnutrition about 1.5 million years ago in modern day Tanzania.  The child was around the weaning age and had a type of spongy bone growth associated with either the mother (due to breast milk) or the child not consuming enough nutrients directly from meat or eggs.  According to the author of the study Manuel Dominguez-Rodrigo, an archaeologist at Complutense University in Madrid, the finding implies that meat must have been an integral, and not sporadic, element of the pre-human diet more than one million years ago.  Humans evolved on the African Savanna where meat was plentiful.  From insects to elephants, they provided the best packaging of calories, proteins, fats, and Vitamin B12 needed for brain growth and maintenance.

We believe that the body has certain requirements that need to be fulfilled in order for it to be healthy.  These requirements come in the areas of having and maintaining a brain body connection, moving and using our bodies, having healthy thoughts and emotions, and providing it with fuels so it can thrive and not just survive.  The information in this article is just one of the entities of a healthy diet.  The foods that our forefathers ate are much different than the foods that we buy from the grocery store.  The quality of meats and vegetables unfortunately do not compare in quality to original wild sources due to decreased nutrient content, fat imbalances, genetic alterations, and toxic chemicals.

Eating healthy is a possibility today, it just takes some planning and quality information to base your food choices around.  

Neanderthal Says: Eating Meat is Good For You