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"There's Something Fishy About Human Brain Evolution"

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posted on Feb, 22 2006 @ 07:20 PM
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I'm not entirely sure if this particular subject is appropriate for this forum, but I decided to give it a try, and share it with the rest of you anyway. It is somewhat interesting (if indeed it is true) that a food source helped us evolve to what we are today. I'm just thinking out loud, but is there a possibility that nations with a sea-shore have a higher percentage of people with above average IQ? Could they possibly be smarter than people who live inland? Supplements are being taken by those living inland,....yet it still makes me wonder.

On another note, I have heard in the past that fish is brain food, so this isn't a ground-breaking news flash, yet I never thought about it helping us evolve.

Something Fishy About Human Brain Evolution


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Forget the textbook story about tool use and language sparking the dramatic evolutionary growth of the human brain. Instead, imagine ancient hominid children chasing frogs. Not for fun, but for food.

According to Dr. Stephen Cunnane it was a rich and secure shore-based diet that fuelled and provided the essential nutrients to make our brains what they are today. Controversially, according to Dr. Cunnane our initial brain boost didn't happen by adaptation, but by exaptation, or chance.

"Anthropologists and evolutionary biologists usually point to things like the rise of language and tool making to explain the massive expansion of early hominid brains. But this is a Catch-22. Something had to start the process of brain expansion and I think it was early humans eating clams, frogs, bird eggs and fish from shoreline environments. This is what created the necessary physiological conditions for explosive brain growth," says Dr. Cunnane, a metabolic physiologist at the University of Sherbrooke in Sherbrooke, Quebec.

The evolutionary growth in hominid brain size remains a mystery and a major point of contention among anthropologists. Our brains weigh roughly twice as much as our similarly sized earliest human relative, Homo habilis two million years ago. The big question is which came first -- the bigger brain or the social, linguistic and tool-making skills we associate with it?

But, Dr. Cunnane argues that most anthropologists are ignorant or dismissive of the key missing link to help answer this question: the metabolic constraints that are critical for healthy human brain development today, and for its evolution.



(edited by Byrd.. please don't cut and paste the whole article. Thanks!)


[edit on 23-2-2006 by Byrd]




posted on Feb, 22 2006 @ 07:44 PM
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Interesting article. The only part I disagree with is when he said that there was no initial selection for a larger brain. Although his definition of initial may change the interpretation of that statement. And there's so much room for argument that I don't have it in me at the moment. I will pass on an interesting fact I read a few days ago. It appears that women are making men smarter. While it can obviously be disputed a study (peer reviewed, i'll find it if anyone is that interested) came out that said women tend to select more intelligent, successful men which overtime has increased the base intelligence level of males. So the next time a girl passes you over you can just think about how she's really just trying to ensure a future with more intelligence than you have to offer.

Anyways, great find. Maybe mom was right about finishing my fish.



posted on Feb, 22 2006 @ 08:19 PM
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"It appears that women are making men smarter."

Umm, Uh, I don't know.

I must be the exception not the rule then?

If I remember right, Men like thigh and Breast meat. More then Anorexic chicken leg woman. Yet, Fashion tells me otherwise. And HollyWood shows All married men as idiots.

So either Science is a Fraud or hollywood is?



posted on Feb, 22 2006 @ 09:53 PM
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Yes, high protein diet is the best thing to ever happen to makind. And no wonder vegetarians are so stupid.



posted on Feb, 22 2006 @ 10:48 PM
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All the more reason TO RESTORE THE SEA!!

What the good Dr. has forgotten about live clams is that they are NOT available year 'round. In the North, you don't eat them in months with less than seven letters.

That factoid killed off dumb hominids in the past- and still does today.



posted on Feb, 23 2006 @ 12:55 AM
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Fish are somewhat easier to catch than, say buffalo.

But as to the social implications... hmm. Link that article, if you would.

One of the impacts of a society with divided sex roles is that women and children often get poorer quality food than the men do (a system of taboos controls it.) So... many questions, there.

Yes, please link the article!



posted on Feb, 23 2006 @ 03:33 PM
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Originally posted by cedargrove
Interesting article. The only part I disagree with is when he said that there was no initial selection for a larger brain. Although his definition of initial may change the interpretation of that statement. And there's so much room for argument that I don't have it in me at the moment. I will pass on an interesting fact I read a few days ago. It appears that women are making men smarter. While it can obviously be disputed a study (peer reviewed, i'll find it if anyone is that interested) came out that said women tend to select more intelligent, successful men which overtime has increased the base intelligence level of males. So the next time a girl passes you over you can just think about how she's really just trying to ensure a future with more intelligence than you have to offer.

Anyways, great find. Maybe mom was right about finishing my fish.


There are too many variables involved, and scientists are proven wrong every day by other scientists. I tend to take it with a grain of salt, but it does sound plausible. I watched a program on the Discovery channel a couple of months ago. They had an archeologist talking about humans evolving larger brains, because they discovered a new diet,..... eating animal flesh. He claimed that as vegetarians, humans needed much of their energy to digest the plants they ate. Vegetarian animals do have a more complicated digestive system. Once they began eating meat, their digestive systems evolved to a more simple process, hence saving energy for the brain. Once that happened, their brains began to evolve, gaining size, and intelligence. Though I doubt it, I don't know if that archeologist was the same guy who wrote the above article, but it seems along the same lines.

As for that "women make men smarter" article,... well,... I'm not entirely sure that's true. Theoretically it "should" be true, but I doubt it is in practice. It would be very difficult to proove, since education is becoming more common-place all over the world, and data would have to be collected over a number of years (unless of course that reasearch has already been performed). If you find the article, post it anway. At least it will give an insight into the logic of the scientists who make this claim.

Women have always selected their men according to physical appearance, status, and ability to provide for a family,...but then again,...some women lack good judgement....so who knows? I think we've all heard of dead-beat fathers,.....abusers of all sorts, and the poor families with ten starving children. I don't think evolution is working quick enough, and once again, there are just too many variables. Wether today's dead-beats are smarter than dead-beats from 300 years ago remains to be seen.



posted on Feb, 23 2006 @ 03:38 PM
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Originally posted by Chakotay
All the more reason TO RESTORE THE SEA!!

What the good Dr. has forgotten about live clams is that they are NOT available year 'round. In the North, you don't eat them in months with less than seven letters.

That factoid killed off dumb hominids in the past- and still does today.


While you may be right about the clams, I think the man meant to include all sea creatures such as fish, squid, etc., not only clams.



posted on Feb, 23 2006 @ 06:56 PM
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As to the 'women make men smarter' by choosing the smarter males and having smarter offspring.......sounds good, but I instantly get a vision of the hulking 'ape-man' type simply bashing the 'cave-nerd' over the head and taking the woman......LOL! So much for his brains!

Catching fish would seem to be less hazardous for improving the 'smarts'.



posted on Feb, 23 2006 @ 07:32 PM
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well this answers why the japanese ar the smartest people on earth. Is there anything they cant do that another group of people can(minusing out physical attributes like sports), i dont think so they have a well developed entertainment infrastructure technology and are starting to develop space travel. So if anyone can tell me of something that the Japanese cant do but others can I would be interested.

P.S. Im persian not japanese though I have been called a jap(some might get the joke)

Oh and I am very serious about japanese people as a whole being one of the most inteligent people in the world but did realize one thing that they are not to great at and would probably have to be given to my people(jews) and thats finance/banking

[edit on 23-2-2006 by Desolate Cancer]



posted on Feb, 25 2006 @ 04:06 AM
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Originally posted by Frosty
Yes, high protein diet is the best thing to ever happen to makind. And no wonder vegetarians are so stupid.


Uh yeah, cuz protein is exclusive to meat.


Gogo arrogance.

*consults his arrogance list. ahh Frosty was already on it.*

BTW I am a vegetarian and a competitive martial artist. My diet sustains my lifestyle quite well


Err wait you said "makind". Maybe you meant another species? Or maybe you need more animal protein to boost your smarts
At least you spelled stupid correctly.

[edit on 042828p://25u32 by Lucid Lunacy]



posted on Feb, 25 2006 @ 04:25 AM
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If we are isolating fish then we should also consider the fact fish are high in polyunsaturated fatty acids (omega-3s). Essential for healthy brain function.

Ive also heard the theory that the accidental(?) consumption of psychedelic plants is what gave rise to human consciousness. I agree protein played a major role in the overall development of the brain, but as far as the catalyst for human consciousness goes...i'm leaning towards the latter theory.

[edit on 042828p://25u22 by Lucid Lunacy]




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