Weekly Response – Raw Food, Evolution, and the Like (3/2)

So, this week we talked about lots of interesting things. I also came across many things in the news and in my own web-surfing that made mental connections to what we learned, so my mental picture of where everything related to raw food an such came from is kind of clouded. Forgive me please if I confuse sources or mix up some facts here and there.

So yeah. Firstly, I was most struck by the fact that cooking food increases its energy content and nutritional value by such a large margin (or at least makes it easier for our body to access it). I guess you learn something new every day… I didn’t think that simply eating raw food (and this is food that was meant to be eaten raw, not like large quantities of raw meat or dangerous things) would cause such a drastic reduction in the amount of energy the body absorbs. The drastic weight loss outlined by Wrangham in his description of the raw-foodists kind of shocked me, and also made me wonder about the health effects. If there were a long term study, I would hypothesize that people eating only raw food for a long period of time would have negative health effects, despite reporting feeling better immediately.

I also found it very interesting to ponder the effect upon cooking and fire and such upon the evolution of humans, both physically and culturally. The ideas that Mr. Wrangham presented in his introduction and the first chapter of his book are very thought-provoking, as most people never really think as food and cooking as a big part of human development, although they very likely were. In the last paragraph of chapter one, he summarizes how humans not only desire cooked food, but are adapted to it, and need it to survive

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One Response to Weekly Response – Raw Food, Evolution, and the Like (3/2)

  1. Mr. Sturdy Knight says:

    Good points, William. We often don’t think about the role food has played in human development, despite the fact that every human in history has spent a significant portion of their lives gathering, growing, preparing, and eating food. Many of the most important technological advances in history have been food-driven, from the taming of fire to the development of the refrigerated boxcar. I think you will enjoy what Wrangham has to say about the issues you raise in the weeks to come.

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