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Mind of Fire

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Mind of Fire

  2. 2. Can you imagine life without cooking? In fact, no such people have ever been found – not even primitive tribes!
  3. 3. Most Significant Achievements of Humanity According to Charles Darwin… Language & Fire
  4. 4. Meet Richard Wrangham, a Harvard Biologist
  5. 5. “(Wrangham) Believes that fire is needed to fuel the organ that makes possible all other products of culture, language included: the human brain”
  6. 6. Food = Energy • Every animal on earth is limited by it’s energy budget – CALORIES! • These calories are needed for daily living – not just going to the gym! • A human body devotes 1/5 of its energy to the brain at any given time!
  7. 7. There was a HUGE increase in brain size that hominids embarked on about 1.8 millions years ago… This had to be “paid” for with added calories either taken in or diverted from some other function in the body. Many anthropologist attribute the increase in brain size to addition of meat – BUT Wrangham and colleagues believe there is more to it!
  8. 8. Not only about the number of calories… They say it also matters what happens to the food once it is consumed! Raw food requires more energy chew, swallow and digest. The real breakthrough = COOKING!
  9. 9. The Effects of Cooking • Improves the taste and flavor • Detoxifies and kills parasites • Outsources digestion – Chopping, grinding, and the addition of heat does some of the typical digestion work for the body allowing more energy to be extracted from the food and less expended in digesting it
  10. 10. Impact of Outsourcing Digestion • Breaks down collagen in meat and softens the cell walls of plants to release starch and fat • Increases the macronutrients that can be absorbed by the body – Body gets roughly 30% more energy from cooked oats, wheat or potato starch as compared to raw – 78% more protein from a cooked egg than a raw egg!
  11. 11. To read the entire article from the June 2013 Issue of the Smithsonian go to this link: http://www.smithsonianmag.com/ science-nature/Why-Fire-Makes-Us- Human-208349501.html