I keep hearing about this imaginary paleolithic diet, and I wonder how they know, and also find it strange that there was apparently one people a 100,000 years ago, and they all ate the same things. Everything about it seems wrong.
Now there is some evidence that humans were roasting starchy tubers in their caves.
Based on plants that would have been locally available, Stone Age people likely cooked tubers and roots in the cave, the scientists say. Compared with raw starchy plants, their cooked counterparts would have provided an especially efficient source of glucose, and thus energy, to people. Human fossils previously found in the coastal cave, located at Africa’s southern tip, also date to around 120,000 years ago.
Ancient starch eating at Klasies River Cave supports the possibility that Homo sapiens evolved genetic upgrades to help with digesting hard-to-break-down starch long before people started farming starchy crops in Africa around 10,000 years ago. Scientists have determined that people today carry more copies of starch-digestion genes than did Stone Age populations, such as Neandertals and Denisovans.
Ancient humans in southern Africa likely ate a mix of cooked roots and tubers, shellfish, fish and game animals, Larbey’s team says. Roots and tubers would have been available year-round. And while little is known about the origins of cooking, campfires were being built at least 300,000 years ago in Africa.
Well, maybe there is something to this paleo diet stuff, because I started salivating. I don’t have any shellfish or game, but I’m thinking now that dinner tonight might be some roasted tubers seasoned with some of the herbs my wife is growing in her garden. Our many-times-great grandparents weren’t stupid people. We might as well give those starch-digestion enzymes they bestowed on us a happy workout!