Navigation Links
The way we weren't: U of Minnesota biologist debunks myth that humans peaked in Paleolithic era
Date:3/5/2013

MINNEAPOLIS / ST. PAUL (03/05/2013) Have agriculture, technology, diet and lifestyle changes put humans out of touch with the way we evolved? And would we be healthier and happier if we lived, at least to some extent, the way our Paleolithic ancestors did?

The abundance of Paleo diet and lifestyle recommendations suggests the answer is yes. But University of Minnesota evolutionary biologist Marlene Zuk is skeptical. The Paleo ideal is a myth based on speculation rather than science, she says. As a skilled writer with an engaging sense of humor, she does an informative and entertaining job of debunking this myth in her new book, "Paleofantasy: "What Evolution Really Tells Us About Sex, Diet and How We Live," to be published by W.W. Norton on March 11.

Paleo proponents claim that humans fully evolved as hunter-gatherers and that the development of agriculture triggered a downward spiral, causing disease and social conflicts. But that, Zuk says, is a paleofantasy without scientific basis.

"There's widespread misunderstanding about how evolution works, particularly how fast it happens," Zuk says. "To think of ourselves as misfits in our own time and of our own making flatly contradicts what science has revealed about the way evolution works; namely, that we can adapt over just a few generations."

Genes continuously appear in and disappear from the human genome. Some remain for millions of years, others for much shorter periods, Zuk says. Evolution is a series of compromises and tradeoffs because genes have more than one function, and interact in complicated ways.

"By focusing on how we were in Paleolithic times, we overlook the ways we've changed since then. New tools in evolutionary biology and genetics are helping us understand how change happens, and which parts of the genome change quickly vs. slowly. Understanding that difference in people as well as other organisms is much more interesting to me than trying to hew
'/>"/>

Contact: Matt Hodson
mjhodson@umn.edu
612-625-0552
University of Minnesota
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. University of Minnesota engineering researchers discover new non-invasive method for diagnosing epilepsy
2. University of Minnesota receives $13.1 million in DOE funding for 2 new nationwide centers
3. Antimicrobials from personal care products found in statewide survey of Minnesotas rivers and lakes
4. University of Minnesota startup offers game-changing energy solutions that reduce CO2 emissions
5. University of Minnesota invention helps advance reliability of alternative energy
6. Developmental biologist Arthur Lander named Donald Bren Professor
7. Biologists explore link between amphibian behavior and deadly disease
8. Biologists lead international team to track Arctic response to climate change
9. Biologists map rare case of fitness-reducing interaction in nuclear, mitochondrial DNA
10. Biologistics: How fast do chemical trains move in living cells?
11. Campus as laboratory: U-M student biologists use Diag trees to help solve gypsy moth mystery
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:7/24/2014)... a low vision specialist at The University of Texas ... been awarded a grant to help Harris County residents ... or surgery. , Even with corrective lenses, many people ... there are a variety of low vision devices, such ... their vision loss. , Iyer is using the three-year, ...
(Date:7/24/2014)... week for an all-day public forum on a $1.7 ... to dredge toxic sediment from an eight-mile stretch of ... the plan, which proposes removing 4.3 million cubic yards ... one of the largest cleanups in the agency,s history. ... , "We need to ensure the future well-being of ...
(Date:7/24/2014)... the United States, wildland managers often utilize the silvicultural ... (ladder fuels). These cuttings and other post-logging debris ... in order to dispose of the material. To improve ... cover all or part of the debris pile with ... in order to keep water out. A recent study ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):UTHealth Dr. Bhavani Iyer awarded low vision grant 2Experts Weigh the Pros and Cons of a $1.7 Billion EPA Cleanup Plan for the Passaic River at an NJIT 2Study gives new perspective on agricultural plastic, debris burning, and air quality 2
... of Energy,s Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA-E) has awarded ... Carolina State University to support research into the creation ... in high-temperature environments. "Most biofuels, such as ethanol ... plants through photosynthesis. Our project would cut out the ...
... A system that allows precise targeting of radiotherapy using ... dose of radiation they administered to lung and liver cancers ... the 2nd European Lung Cancer Conference. "With this study ... have a precise system that can give information at any ...
... is available in Spanish . , Agricultural ... Research Center in Burns, Ore., are taking a careful ... high desert rangelands. Cattle share this habitat with ... the showy commotion they create during mating season. But ...
Cached Biology News:NC State wins ARPA-E grant to study extremophile production of biofuels 2ARS scientists study effects of grazing on grouse habitat 2
(Date:7/25/2014)... At the request of the AMA, the ... for the public comment period (Docket No. FAA-2014-0396) for ... established by Congress as part of the FAA Modernization ... the new deadline for comments as September 23, 2014. ... published in the Federal Register on July 25, 2014, ...
(Date:7/25/2014)... , July 25, 2014 Sinovac Biotech Ltd. ... products in China , today announced that ... quarter ended June 30, 2014, after market close on Thursday, ... call prior to the market opening on Friday, August 15, ... 8:00 p.m. China Standard Time) to review the Company,s financial ...
(Date:7/24/2014)... July 24, 2014 -- Keryx Biopharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq:KERX) (the ... randomized, active control Phase 3 study of Zerenex (ferric ... for the treatment of hyperphosphatemia in patients with end-stage ... binding and iRon delivery with FErric CiTrate in EsrD) ... the American Society of Nephrology ( JASN ). ...
(Date:7/24/2014)... RIDGE, Tenn., July 24, 2014 -- A novel combination ... the Department of Energy,s Oak Ridge National Laboratory an ... for its unusual physical and electrochemical properties. , ... how oxygen affects the surface of a perovskite manganite, ... behavior. The new avenue to understand surface behavior could ...
Breaking Biology Technology:FAA Grants Comment Extension at the Request of AMA 2Sinovac to Host Conference Call to Report Second Quarter 2014 Unaudited Financial Results 2Zerenex (ferric citrate) long-term Phase 3 study results published in JASN 2Zerenex (ferric citrate) long-term Phase 3 study results published in JASN 3Zerenex (ferric citrate) long-term Phase 3 study results published in JASN 4ORNL study reveals new characteristics of complex oxide surfaces 2
... , June 25 Ruedi Waeger , Ph.D., former president ... of Directors, was honored with the Robert W. Reilly Leadership award June ... , , , ... Plasma Protein Therapeutics Association (PPTA) and recognizes individuals who exemplify the leadership qualities ...
... Beardsworth Consulting Group, Inc. announces the appointments of ... Robert W. Malone , M.D. as the company,s Medical Director, Vaccines. ... Dr. Alison Martin ... of clinical research experience.  She joins Beardsworth from the National Cancer Institute ...
... HOPKINTON, Mass. , June 25 Caliper Life ... and services for drug discovery and life sciences research, hosted its ... 9 and 10. This thought-leadership conference is focused on sharing ... process, leading to the next generation of breakthrough diagnostics and therapies. ...
Cached Biology Technology:Ruedi Waeger Receives the 2010 Robert W. Reilly Leadership Award from Plasma Protein Therapeutics Association 2Alison Martin, MD and Robert W. Malone, MD Join Beardsworth 2Caliper Owners Group Meeting Showcases Critical Role of Biopharma and Academic Researchers for Improving Healthcare and Quality of Life 2Caliper Owners Group Meeting Showcases Critical Role of Biopharma and Academic Researchers for Improving Healthcare and Quality of Life 3
AedestaTM Animal Organ/Tissue Perfusion Soln....
ANTI FLAG EP CL VEC...
Cross reactivity to St. Louis encephalitis (MSI-7) is determined by ELISA....
EGTA, 10 g. Ethylene glycol-O,O-bis-[2-amino-ethyl]-N,N,N,N,-tetraacetic acid.Assay: > 99.0%. Category: Nucleotides & Enzymes & Biochemicals, Ultrapure Biochemicals ....
Biology Products: